The first match was a Bo5 ZvZ between Impact and the heavily favoured ByuL. Impact started the series with an early ling/baneling attack that canceled ByuL’s natural. Both players safely macroed after that, though, with ByuL’s lair, third base and spire all faster. His mutalisk count was higher from the start which gave Impact no choice but to concede after foolishly initiating a fight.
Impact got more done with the same sort of aggression on Newkirk Precinct though, following up with a low-econ roach attack that pulled him further ahead. Needing to make something happen, ByuL turned to his favoured mutalisk transition. They bought him time, but not the game as hydra/infestor evened the series.
The aggression continued in Game 3, but a heavy bane hit from Impact on ByuL's worker line sent him into the lead for the second time in the series. Desperate to close things out, the Dead Pixels zerg stuck with the plan that had brought him success all series long. Lings flooded into ByuL's main, but ByuL pulled practically all his drones to save his natural hatch when it was deep in the red. That allowed him to quickly even the defecit as both players reached three bases.
Both players moved into tunneling claws roaches, and after a few fights, the army supply was in ByuL’s favor. Both players built spires and fourth bases, but things were thrown on their head when ByuL dove into Impact’s main with his entire army. Impact countered and took a hefty army supply lead, but another erroneous decision to take the muta vs muta fight against ByuL's larger flock allowed ByuL to clean up the rest of the roach / ravager army, sending us to a final set.
Impact took an early third on Honorgrounds that ByuL was unable to punish. From there, both players moved into mutalisks, but Impact always had the higher count. ByuL built infestors, but lost his third in the process. With Impact ahead on economy, they transitioned to ultra/infestors/viper. Impact lost a big fight, but remaxed with 15 ultras. After a brief lull, Impact won out as he and ByuL smashed into each other with their full armies, making Impact the first semifinalist.
Next up, Zest and Classic faced off to see who would play against Impact. The series got off to a peculiar start with dueling proxy dark shrines. Classic wisely made a robo though, and after delaying Zest’s dt’s and denying Zest’s robo, Zest tapped out.
Zest started game two with a pylon rush that was completely shut down. With his nexus delayed, Zest went for an adept drop that also failed. Both players moved into blink, while Zest added disruptors. Up a base, Classic’s contain turned into a crushing attack that put him one game from advancing.
Game three was even more puzzling than the first. Classic’s botched cannon rush meant Zest got a faster expansion. To compensate Classic went for disruptor drops. As the players expanded, Classic transitioned into colossi, while Zest went for phoenixes off double stargates. Zest was so far ahead that even though he lost a massive fight he was able to repel Classic’s push into his fourth. Some traditionally effective Zest macro had left him with a 4k / 3k bank, and a mass zealot warp-in turned the tides.
Both players traded early adept harass on Cactus Valley, but Classic doubled up with a resonating glaives attack which left him vulnerable to Zest’s DTs. Classic tried to protect his building robo, but it died before he could get an observer. Classic managed to put Zest on one base, but he was irreparably behind economically. Proxying a robo in the middle of the map allowed him to finally get detection on the map, but he'd already lost too much. The writing was on the wall and so they moved into game five.
Zest immediately set the pace of their final game, opening with a greedy nexus first build. Classic felt pressured to respond, trying a pylon rush and oracles to start the final game, but Zest deflected both easily. Zest then opted for blink and took his third while Classic continued into void rays, eventually adding disruptors. Classic looked to have stabilized, but adept/prisms gutted his economy just as the game was beginning to look doable for him. Classic stuck around with half the income, but Zest eventually cleaned up the last of his opponent's army.
Join us on Thursday 13 April for the second half of the VSL Round of 8.