Worlds Quarter Finals 2 Min Preview (Saturday): RNG vs FNC
Royal Never Give Up Summary
RNG, and Uzi especially, have been amongst the strongest team fighting teams at Worlds. Uzi has been extremely effective on hypercarries such as Twitch and Vayne and his team have been willing to play around bot lane to ensure that he is able to make the transition from early game to late without falling too far behind. However, although Uzi has the majority of the highlights, the key players for RNG have been Mlxg and Xiaohu. Mlxg has played a high gank focused style but has been able to avoid falling behind (except game 2 vs G2) because Xiaohu has been able to get mid priority consistently 1 v 1 (against high calibre mid laners such as Crown, Perkz and Frozen). RNG have used this mid/jungle pressure to attack side lanes and bridge through early game. In mid-late RNG are extremely proactive in forcing team fights, and will aggressively look to contest vision in enemy jungle (even at a gold deficit) and make picks. FNC have been below par at this World Championships so far, but they will surely look to contest the Xiaohu/Mlxg pairing. How well FNC do in this series will depend firstly on if Broxah/Caps are able to match their opposite numbers, and then how well LetMe/Soaz are able to get pressure to influence the 2v2.
The best thing that can be said about FNC is that they have shown strong mental fortitude throughout their worlds run. In knockout situations against HKA, IMT and GAM they have been able to play at a consistent level whilst rivals played far below their normal level. However, FNC have 3 main issues as a team at this tournament:
1) Their mid game lane assignments are poor, and this causes them to get behind, even against teams from emerging regions such as KLG, YG and GAM.
2) They don’t play well around Broxah attacking enemy jungle. Despite adjacent pushing lanes, backup in jungle invade situations has been slow to arrive. Deep vision has often been the responsibility of Broxah to contest alone, making him extremely susceptible to picks
3) FNC don’t set side waves properly before grouping in late game. This means that they don’t have map pressure late and rely heavily on enemy teams making mistakes to win rather than being able to force themselves. Of FNC’s 10 wins at worlds (group stage and play-in), only 3–4 have come from FNC forcing the pace of the game, the rest have relied on enemy mistakes.
On paper this should be a comfortable win for RNG. FNC win games mainly through team fighting (in particular punishing poor team fight execution from enemy team) and RNG are amongst the best team fighting teams in the world. However, the mid 2v2 will be key early game and FNC have looked at their best when Broxah has played for Caps. Soaz has also hard carried multiple games at worlds, and if he can get pressure against Letme 1v1 and use this to swing mid in FNC’s favour they might be able to get a result.
RNG Group Stage Match History
RNG attack Nidalee mid game with high single target cc/burst focus. Letme/Xiaohu use their push to control top side jungle -> transfer top lead to bot. FB need bot lane to have pressure because they lose solo lanes and jungle, but RNG stop this happening with roams.
SSG greedy Relic Shield start against strong laning ADC, without winning 2v2 mid/jgl (cedes push in mid and bot). RNG take advantage to snowball through bot lane + bot side jgl vision. RNG mid game vision denial excellent->forces key fight when SSG must contest.
Despite side lane push and winning jungle matchup, G2 play extremely slow and low risk because on paper their comp outscales RNG late (RNG are full ad, with a Jayce that will fall off late and only Twitch for sustained dps). However, exceptional team fight positioning and stealth usage from Uzi more than makes up for compositional weakness.
Mlxg extremely reckless early game. 2 flashes burned on first gank top for no kill (costly when trick ganks later), attempt to deny full wave of cs instead of just taking bot t1 as soon as possible (turned, giving G2 first tower), re-engaged lost fight top. G2 free snowball without doing anything.
FB draft to deny ADC through bans. However, they give Galio to RNG and start jungle route on bot side Red buff in vision. RNG respond with 3 minute gank bot to equalise lane, then defend future dives bot with Galio -> Bot lane snowballed in favour of RNG
SSG Mid/Jungle control poor, no backups for Ambition invades, no collapse vs mlxg aggression. Game extends because RNG are over-aggressive in bot dives without vision and give up kills to Camille and bot lane. However, in team fights Uzi’s positioning>>>Ruler and he carries.
FNC Group Stage Match History
GAM draft losing lanes and jungle but negate this through smart use of lane swap and Nocturne to make picks in response to tower dives. GAM play extremely aggressively mid game with numbers deficit, but 90% of time calculated vs FNC cds or to block rotations (earning towers).
FNC comp should struggle early game but they play well around putting jungle pressure mid lane and then transferring it to bot to stall. Game extends with both sides playing extremely passively, however Rekkles flashes into 1v5 at 50 mins to lose game.
FNC poor knowledge of jungle pathing or use of lane swaps to play around areas of strength->leave Maokai in horrible matchup vs Nasus. LZ comp scales because Nasus free to hard split due to LZ wave clear, good disengage +Galio to stop FNC collapsing on Nasus.
FNC odd Renekton last pick vs Jayce/Lulu (Renekton cannot team fight vs Lulu, so must split->early lead key->Reksai must top), BUT bot lane loses hard early (cannot survive without ganks)->too much for Reksai to bridge early->FNC cannot snowball before outscaled.
IMT don’t play to their composition’s win conditions correctly. With Ezreal jungle and ardent support, Maokai is the only tanks for peeling so MUST hold cds vs dive threat (meaning IMT should use range advantage to fight slow). In key fights Flame repeatedly uses all cds to dive, leaving Cody Sun with no zone control protection.
Archie plays extremely disrespectfully top for GAM, pushing lane with no flash vs ganking jungler -> 4 deaths in early laning phase. Soaz uses his lead to buy an early Righteous Glory for engage and snowballs his lead across the map.
FNC’s Malzahar excellent counter to Ryze: Can outpush -> transfer pressure + lvl 6 kill threat with gank stops Pobeltor contesting wave. Although IMT outscale with Twitch, FNC use Malzahar + Chogath to make picks/isolate targets in fights with huge single target burst and snowball before Twitch can scale.
FNC poor Jungle/Support communication around vision control allows GAM (with powerful late game composition) picks to stop FNC snowball. However, GAM unwilling to take small wins to delay game -> overextend chasing kills -> lose won fights. Optimus misses 4 key shockwaves.
FNC Play-In Match History
Tierwulf ganks bot with Elise before hitting level 3, gets turned and dies. Broxah over-extensions into KLG jungle gives KLG opportunities to punish but KLG repeatedly over-extend chasing kills and FNC punish well by collapsing first from adjacent lanes -> river skirmishes.
FNC get behind on tempo trading side tower objective vs Nidalee, and fall far behind, but are rescued because YG team fight execution is off in key fights (overchasing and mis-executed/mis-communicated teleport flank)
Broxah shaky with early pathing, however poor KLG draft with only Xayah as a damage threat (too short range to position aggressively as only damage threat, cannot siege well) stop them being able to capitalise. FNC punish Fix reset to make key pick to stop snowball and outscale.
FNC have extremely poor understanding of pressure, rotations or how to trade sides to progress game and cannot snowball despite early pressure off Elise. YG team fight well around Lulu late game and close out with superior team fighting.
P1) FNC/HKA (1)
FNC questionable early game macro (around objective trading) -> HKA ahead. However, with side towers down HKA keep 1–3–1 vs heavy anti-dive composition and no side lane objectives to take instead of setting up 3–1–1 -> collapse. Cannot take mid t1 to get jungle access to snowball.
P2) FNC/HKA (2)
Soaz destroys Rumble as Shen and snowballs advantage to rest of map. HKA outscaled so must force bot side, but all this does is play into Shen’s lead even further
P3) FNC/HKA (3)
FNC ahead early with good mid/jungle synergy. Snowball through clever 2–2–1->4–1–0 rotation (Galio covering 2 lanes whilst his team groups). HKA win some team fights but are unable to find a macro solution to FNC’s rotation patterns.