Analysis of the Anubis Avalanche - Dynasty vs. Fuel
The second map between Seoul Dynasty and Dallas Fuel on opening night will go down as one of the best from the Inaugural Season of the Overwatch League. Seoul had just come a first game loss on Junkertown where Dallas looked strong, and they needed a win to turn the tide. Thankfully, the next map, Temple of Anubis, is one of their strongest.
Beginning the match, Dynasty went for the top defense just above Objective A, where the team shields and protects one of the best Widowmaker perches. Defending from here forced Dallas’s more less divey assault team to approach the objective from the right side of the map for more protection, instead of the popular left route through the market. Pushing Dallas into to this route enabled Seoul to force them into a trap that I’ll talk about later, but unfortunately, EFFECT was able to take out Zunba’s D.Va too quickly for Dynasty to engage properly, though we did see a preview of what was to come later.
With the help of EFFECT following up the Zunba kill with 3 more quick eliminations, Dallas captured Objective A in 57 seconds, and steamrolled into Objective B to capture it in just 49 seconds, completing the round in only one minute and 46 seconds. This gave them a massive 6:14 time bank and continued the theme of making Seoul’s defense look troubled.
In Dynasty’s opening push in Round 2, they followed Dallas’s lead and went for a slow and methodical approach, keeping Fleta on Genji and focused on controlling EFFECT’s Widowmaker as the Fuel went for a traditional market defense next to the bridge. While on the outside looking in it appeared that this strategy wasn’t working when both the Dynasty supports were quickly shut down, it turned out to be a setup for their second push that allowed Seoul to surround Dallas and come at them from all sides (below).
Miro (Winston) opened by leaping onto Chipshalen (Mercy) who was out in the open on the bridge, which began the Fuel death spiral and allowed them to not only clear point A, but it also began the point B steamroll with a 5 ultimate advantage and take the objective even faster than Dallas did, 43 seconds, giving them a time bank of 4:48.
Round 3 began with Dallas on defense and they opted for the same strategy as before, trying to hold the market. This time they crumbled to Dynasty’s dive comp due to being bunched up. This not only allowed Seoul to continue the snowball, but turn it into an avalanche. With the quick loss of Point A, Dallas knew they had little chance of holding B, so they played triage, opting to stall and eat away at as much of the remaining time Seoul would have in their next assault round.
Hoping for a repeat of their Round 1 success, in Round 4 Dallas went for a similar approach, but this time using Lucio’s speed boost to race for the point. With Dynasty’s positioning, the rush negated their dive defense and left them scrambling to reach the point. Even though Chips’ Mercy quickly fell, losing the access to Resurrection, Dallas was able to capitalize on Seoul’s lack of preparedness for a quick capture of both points.
When Round 5 began, Dynasty’s attack only had 3:18 on the clock. The Fuel went for the market defense yet again, but this time kept themselves scattered for the inevitable dive that came. Spreading out wasn’t enough though, and Fleta quickly tore through their ranks with Genji, killing Taimou, Chipshalen, Harryhook, and Effect in quick succession to help capture the point in just 44 seconds!
A popular strategy for defending point B is having a support player switch to Sombra for health pack denial, more DPS, and access to EMP on the enclosed capture area, but they instead opted to have Taimou make the change-up. It held promise as he built up a quick EMP, but in an unusual engagement, Dallas chose to dive into Seoul’s lineup outside the front gates, which allowed the Dynasty to secure a few kills and race to the point. With under a minute remaining, Fuel again had no choice but to go for the stall in an attempt to force the round into Overtime, hoping to leave Dynasty little time for the next round. Holding for 47 seconds, it wasn’t quite enough and Seoul finished with 11 seconds on the clock.
In what would become the final round, Dynasty prepared their earlier trap by returning to the top defense from Round 1. Fuel was stuck on repeat, and again attempted to rush the point as they did in round 4. With this rush, they fell right into the spider’s web. With Dynasty up top, Fuel hugged the wall near the small health back to keep out of sight lines from above, but seconds after the engagement, Fleta was on the move.
From this position above the front choke, no matter where Dallas moved to, they were in danger of being either sniped by Fleta, or assaulted by the rest of the Dynasty. Dallas was forced to hide in buildings if they were to stay alive, and putting themselves into massive danger if they poked their heads out to make process on the capture meter. With this arrangement, Dynasty could also send Zunba on D.Va down to contest, and jump back up to an awaiting Tobi whenenever he needed healing.
Taking a look at the field from Fleta’s point of view, you can see where there was no safe position on the point.
In the last minute on the clock, Dallas switched to a dive comp, hoping to force Miro and the support off the perch. The tactic worked, but at great cost after losing much of their time to picks by Fleta. Capturing Point A in Overtime, along with having a Tactical Visor and Primal Rage at the ready and knowing that they forced Seoul to use up their ultimates, Dallas had only 30 seconds, one chance to tie things up.
Racing to Objective B and able to hit about 60% of a capture, another set of rounds looked promising when the Fuel had all 6 players on the point, but Dynasty are masters of the Anubis stall and held B in Overtime for 51 seconds, all while whittling away at Fuel’s numbers. In the end, it was xQc’s jumping off the point while using Primal Rage that led to the end of Anubis, and gave Seoul their first win of Season 1.
Why were there so many snowballs in this engagement? There are a few factors.
Being a capture map, or 2cp, it lends itself easier to snowballs once the first point is captured if the attacker is able to stagger the eliminations. Stagger enough and the defenders are not able to set up their defense and hope for a good stall.
In this match-up, Fuel were able to take advantage of the 2cp steamroll and use Dynasty’s staggered spawns, however when Seoul attacked, they often killed Dallas in quick succession to use staggers, but but were able to take advantage of Dallas’s poor engagements to quickly dive the point, forcing the boys in blue to stall instead of win.
On top of 2cp’s rushed nature, watching closely one can see exactly what each team was going for in their engagements. Dallas was targeting Zunba’s D.Va in every engagement, hoping to remove Defensive Matrix from the equation, and Seoul felt Mercy was the larger problem, setting their sights on Chipshalen’s Mercy. Taking out either of these heroes is a massive boost for either team based on the hero abilities alone, let alone the skill of the individual players.
If you’d like to watch the entire match in its entirety, you can find a direct link here.