Evil Geniuses is headed home in what will likely be viewed as a huge disappointment for one of the tournament favorites.
North America’s final team took a 2-1 lower bracket defeat to Vici Gaming. That sends the team home with a shared ninth-place finish and a $800,400 check.
The series opened with a sprint of a game that saw Evil Geniuses get on the board first. Things were even into the mid game but all it took was one team wipe in mid game for Evil Geniuses to take the win. A botched initiation by Zeng “Ori” Jiaoyang led to a messy fight that ended with five dead Vici Gaming players.
EG used that to push and Vici Gaming just couldn’t get its footing back in time to stop them. The pressure stayed on with the “GG” call coming at 22 minutes.
Game two was the complete opposite, with Evil Geniuses and Vici Gaming trading the momentum in a 51-minute marathon. Every engagement was frantic and while EG tended to get the better of the fights, Vici did enough damage to keep them from getting too much and eventually became the first team to properly crack high ground.
A key fumble by Evil Geniuses where Arteezy was picked off and killed despite having Aegis of the Immortal opened the door for Vici Gaming to force a decider.
The final game started with intense early aggression from Evil Geniuses. As soon as they got some levels, Tal “Fly” Aizik and Andreas Franck “Cr1t-” Nielsen began roaming across the map, hunting for kills. Some worked out and others didn’t, but that was fine for Yang “poyoyo” Shaohan on Spectre.
That kind of back-and-forth action continued on into the mid-game with Evil Geniuses playing around Arteezy and the Aegis of the Immortals on Troll Warlord. Though the team was able to apply serious pressure, it wasn’t able to crack high ground outside a lone tier-three tower.
As poyoyo’s Spectre started to come online, Cr1t- and Fly just couldn’t stay alive long enough through Haunts to impact team fights. Evil Geniuses could still find pick-offs and pressure with Aegis, but without it the team couldn’t do anything to challenge Vici Gaming. The Chinese squad knew it too, and Vici Gaming flipped the switch and began commanding the game and finding pickoffs.
A kill on Arteezy left him without buyback and Evil Geniuses without any way to defend. That prompted an all-in push from Vici Gaming that paid off to lock up the series 2-1. It also punched EG’s ticket home from TI10.
The elimination of Evil Geniuses came alongside swift eliminations of Quincy Crew and Undying at TI10. Undying fell victim to Fnatic in a best-of-one, while Quincy Crew had the misfortune of drawing OG in the second round of the lower bracket.
While the early eliminations of Undying and Quincy Crew aren’t shocking given TI10’s format, Evil Geniuses falling on the bottom half of the final standings is a surprise.
Evil Geniuses was the top team in the Dota Pro Circuit, taking second place in both majors this season and looking strong in regional play. That was enough to have the team pegged as one of the favorites to win alongside PSG.LGD.
Despite that, Evil Geniuses never quite lived up to that billing at TI10. The team looked solid in the group stage en route to a 9-7 finish, but never quite looked dominant. Evil Geniuses survived the best-of-one round by eliminating Elephant, but didn’t look especially sharp for its elimination match against Vici Gaming.
With the season now over and roster shuffle season looming, Evil Geniuses could be in for a big shakeup. The big question is who will be on their way out the door?