Echo Fox Sonic Fox wins Kombat Cup S2 Week 1!

We couldn’t be happier to note how Season 2 started with a tremendous bang! While a majority of this Top 8 consists of players familiar to those who’ve watched Season 1, three of them were entirely new faces, and each of them had their shares of talent to shock us.

Unfortunately, Frozen Acid, who’d made his Top 8 debut in the final week of Season 1, was unable to participate. Therefore, Noble iLuusions would advance to the Top 4 by default. It’s a shame, but there will be plenty of opportunities for Acid to try his hand at the finals!

As the first match unfolded, the Season 1 champion, Echo Fox Sonic Fox, would take on newcomer HARA Rewind. The fox practically mauls Rewind throughout the first round, but that is the trigger that kicks Rewind’s gears into motion. One touch is all Rewind needs to entrap the fox in a string of plus frames that also compensates part of the meter cost for Displacer Raiden’s MB Teleport. Sonic tries to control the teleport but fails, and Rewind takes Game 1. In a surprise twist, Sonic switches to the character that gave him his first shreds of glory in MKX: Erron Black. As Sonic applies the pressure with his 2 1 1 2 2 string while mixing in command grabs, Rewind becomes too overzealous in pressing buttons, causing him to lose the second game, but he makes up for it in Game 3 with an occasional torpedo to instill caution into the fox. After a loss by chip out, Sonic finally pulls out his Sektor, but Rewind’s adaptation seems to spell the champion’s end…until he drops his winning combo. Instantly the fox takes advantage of his mistake to tie up the set 2-2. His final instances are of desperation from escaping Sonic’s MB missiles with his MB Teleport. It works the first time, but a second EX Homing Missile tags him on start-up, enacting a Brutality in the process. After staring defeat in the face, Sonic completes his comeback to win 3-2!

The domination of the Echo Fox crew would continue through the efforts of Echo Fox Scar, who takes on his former teammate, ISM Starcharger. The two were initially introduced to the scene as comrades for the Kombat Houston crew, back during the days of Mortal Kombat 9, but allies have now become enemies. Scar is caught unawares by Starcharger’s D1 – Fan Lifts and D1 – Rising Fans, a tactic that serves as an excellent anti-counterpoke set-up. In spite of this drawback, Scar is prepared with some top-notch whiff punishers that fluster the Edenien warrior. A correct read on Scar’s jump-out goes awry as Starcharger commits to a float instead of his jump-2, giving Scar the opportunity to go up a game. Star answers back with instant-air fans that are thrown extremely low to the ground, making the mid-range game even more of a chore. A wild scramble in Game 2 ends in Star’s favor, tying the set at one win apiece. When Star produces his parry, Scar hesitates and then turns invisible, prompting the Edenien to react with a slide that is blocked and punished for the game. Star displays a valiant effort, but a final poke leaves him open to a neutral jump-punch that propels Scar to a 3-1 victory!

Due to Frozen Acid’s absence, the tournament proceeded to its last quarterfinals match between Noble Tweedy and GTG Semiij. In their previous encounter, Tweedy had picked apart Semiij with some deadly tech to produce a one-sided win in his favor, and that tech proves to be effective still judging by how his teleport tech counts Semiij’s EX Fade cleanly. But although Tweedy goes up a win as a result, he finds himself almost instantly falling back to a defensive playstyle in the face of Semiij’s increasing aggression. Tweedy was using his B1 to dodge the jump-ins at first, but he switched back to the strategy of blocking as his nerves began to limit his responses. The hitbox of Mileena’s D1 leaves our jaws hanging as it consistently anti-airs Tweedy at the peak of his jumps, allowing Semiij to create 30% conversions off of them. Down 1-2, Tweedy begins running in to start his offense. Semiij is startled by his opponent’s sudden rushdown and tries to jump backwards only to be anti-aired, but he recovers quickly in the final round, trapping his opponent in the corner with blockstrings, staggers and an occasional jump-1. Tweedy’s life bars eventually give out against the pressure. For Semiij, revenge is truly sweet!

For the first time since their induction into the Echo Fox crew, Sonic Fox and Scar must commit a team kill in order to advance in the tournament. Of course, the two share a familiar rivalry that goes back to the days of the ESL Pro League. The slow and steady pace of their matches is a testament to how well the two understand one another’s playstyles, so it takes tens of seconds before either player cracks open the other’s shell. On occasion, a player’s savage moment is punished by only a jab, obviously due to a missed input, which is a mark of how high the nerves are running within the two. Scar would come close to choking at the end of a round before he wins it. Even more interesting is that the B1 overheads are almost non-existent from these matches. With the set tied at 1-1, Sonic begins whittling away at Scar’s iron-clad defense with a mixture of throws and blockstrings. Scar does likewise while spending meter on his EX Phase like candy at the cost of his access to Breakers, which allows Sonic to pulverize him for one mistake with a lot of damage. In the final game, Scar clutches out the second round with a throw, but he is overwhelmed by the fox afterward. Sonic eliminates Scar 3-1 to proceed to the Grand Finals!

Next up, Noble iLuusions and GTG Semiij would meet for a runback from KIT 2017, where iLuusions triumphed 3-1 to get into the Top 4. Semiij plays a decent mid-range game with his sais, but fails to block against iLuusion’s 1 2 string, which has a low as its second hit. iLuusions also draws upon his armor rune to ensure that trades with the opponent end in his favor. As iLuusions takes a quick first win, Semiij switches to his back-up, Hollywood Cassie Cage, but this choice does nothing to ease his woes over the match-up. At a crucial point in the match, iLuusions cancels a restand into his meter-draining rune and then surprises Semiij with another mix-up that deprives him of his chance to use a Breaker. The final leg of Game 2 comes down to a scramble until iLuusions performs the Michaelangelo Special by winning with a Sky Drop! Semiij immediately returns to his Ethereal Mileena for a final stand, though his difficulties in defending against Quan Chi remain obvious. To the crowd’s surprise, Semiij allows iLuusions to jump cleanly over him before administering one final mix-up. History is repeated as Semiij falls to iLuusions 3-0!

iLuusions has been a regular in the Kombat Cup Top 8 for quite some time, but this would mark his first appearance in a Grand Finals, much to the joy of his Noble comrades. Only Sonic Fox stood in his way, and he would not go quietly. Having watched the last set, Sonic was prepared to block iLuusion’s low launcher, though he still had to contend with the armor rune obstructing the trades. The fox immediately reacts to iLuusion’s jump-in, forcing the Noble player to keep his feet planted to the ground. To make up for his poor wake-up options, iLuusions burns meter for armor when using the corner interactables, and he also manages to break Sonic’s defense by reverting to his F4 overhead option. Game 2 ends in a stunning conclusion with SonicFox countering iLuusions’s armored Sky Drop with a Teleport Uppercut to break the armor. Not willing to give up, iLuusions abuses his overhead again to force the third game to a final round. After a quick exchange of blows, the two walk into and out of each other’s territory cautiously, looking for a chance to run in for the kill. iLuusions strikes first, but Sonic’s counter sends him full-screen. With no other option, iLuusions bets it all on the Michaelangelo Special once again…only to be blocked and punished.

With a resounding 3-0, Echo Fox Sonic Fox takes Week 1 of Kombat Cup Season 2! It may be a fresh start, but the champion’s prowess has yet to falter! Noble iLuusions is also to be commended for finally breaking into a Grand Finals after continuous Top 8 appearances. Everybody has put on a great show and we’ve enjoyed every second of it!

Final Results

1st – Echo Fox Sonic Fox
Prizes: $250 and 150 league points

2nd – Noble iLuusions
Prizes: $100 and 125 league points

3rd/4th – GTG Semiij
Prizes: $50 and 75 league points

3rd/4th – Echo Fox Scar
Prizes: $50 and 75 league points

5th – Frozen Acid
Prizes: 50 league points

5th – HARA Rewind
Prizes: 50 league points

5th – ISM Starcharger
Prizes: 50 league points

5th – Noble Tweedy
Prizes: 50 league points

Match Log

Quarterfinals

Echo Fox Sonic Fox (Cassie Cage, Erron Black and Sektor): 3 vs. HARA Rewind (Raiden): 2

Echo Fox Scar (Triborg – Smoke): 3 vs. ISM Starcharger (Kitana): 1

GTG Semiij (Mileena): 3 vs. Noble Tweedy (Kenshi): 1

(Noble iLuusions advances by default due to Frozen Acid’s DQ)

Semifinals

Echo Fox Sonic Fox (Triborg – Sektor): 3 vs. Echo Fox Scar (Triborg – Smoke): 1

Noble iLuusions (Quan Chi): 3 vs. GTG Semiij (Mileena and Cassie Cage): 0

Grand Finals

Noble iLuusions (Quan Chi): 0 vs. Echo Fox Sonic Fox (Triborg – Sektor): 3

Thanks go out to Mr Aquaman and GTG Doughboy for casting the conclusion to Week 1! Doughboy will return tonight alongside VX Saga to cast our first Konquest bracket, which happens at 8 P.M. EST on the PS4. If you did not make it to the Top 4 in the Kombat Cup, you can sign up for a chance to grab some redemption points!

Sign-ups for Week 2 of the Kombat Cup are also available and can be found here.

Missed out on the action? Watch this archive to catch up! Matches will be uploaded to our YouTube channel soon.

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