Few teams have enjoyed such regular season success as Legacy Esports. In the three-year history of the Oceanic Pro League, Legacy have won more than 75% of their matches and have multiple first-place regular split finishes, all beyond the steadfast leadership of talismanic captain Tim “Carbon” Wendel. With Carbon now donning the suit and (Hopefully?) tie instead of a green-and-black jersey, Legacy have rebuilt entirely around mercurial midlaner Claire, adding an adept if unspectacular bot lane, an experienced voice in the jungle, and brought in Oceania’s first Korean import in two seasons. The retooled Legacy will attempt to build upon the…tradition…that Carbon led his team to, and although the task may look stiff on paper, add Legacy’s first trophy in the OPL era.
Importantly for the organisation, they have retained the services of head coach Luchio “Soulstrikes” Park. Soulstrikes adds supreme gameplay knowledge, an eye to innovate without torpedoing his squad with off-meta picks, and OPL experience as a coach which is a rare combination among coaches. He’s added international experience with his appearance at Rift Rivals with Legacy. My take on Soulstrikes is that he is naturally a collaborator and this approach is perfect to build a young squad from the ground up.
2017 was a Jekyll-and-Hyde year for Brandon “Claire” Nguyen. Had he spent split 1 in an org that had Legacy’s expectations but was perhaps not as dedicated to player development as Legacy is known for, he may very well have not made it to split 2. Claire paid off Legacy’s faith in him with a significantly better latter half of the season. Retaining Claire gives the Legacy some much-needed organisational continuity as they rebuild the rest of the roster. Ask anyone with any background in high-elo Oceanic league of legends and they will tell you about the monster Claire, the scrim god that haunts the mid lane. He also has his signature series to his credit which came out of Split 1, a masterful Viktor that was some of the most sumptuous teamfighting you’ll ever see out of a control mage. This is the Claire that Legacy are banking on seeing. Claire is now the local centrepiece that they intend to build around, and the starting point for the dominant solo lane play of days gone by for the green and black legion.
The addition of Lachlan “Sybol” Civil into the jungle is an intriguing pickup. With long-time development prospect Babip heading to eternal rivals The Chiefs it seemed that Legacy were content to let Claire and Raid to provide the leadership from the traditional carry roles. Not the easiest of tasks. Legacy’s great fortune was having veteran jungle presence Sybol fall into their lap after Avant pivoted to their youth movement. At least, it would have been incredibly fortunate 12 months ago. Sybol went through a true period of adjustment in 2017 as it started being released from the Dire Wolves for a crime no more sinister than being not as good as Shernfire, a description that arguably describes every jungler on the server. He started brightly for Avant, but as the year progressed his consistency abandoned him. With that said, he has incredibly high peaks and some frightening champions in his pool. All Sybol has known before 2017 was stability and if Legacy can provide him that I would tip his experience to lead him once more towards the top of the oceanic jungle pile that he has previously called home.
Joining Claire after an inconsistent year of his own is the former Abyss ADC Julian “Raid” Skordos. Over his career Raid has played one very ordinary Split 1 and two absolutely stellar Split 2’s. Despite taking flak for being able to only carry his team as far as the line without getting them over it, with the declining spiral of Looch’s performances he was playing with some of the heaviest Rock Lee training weights since the Chiefs tried to carry lqdcheese. Raid’s strengths are safe laning and consistent damage. He has consistently among the best numbers outside the big 4 oceanic AD Carries – (FBI, K1ng, Raes and Lost) and was arguably the “best of the rest” outside these four. To the credit of his critics, he hasn’t shown the “pop-off” tendencies that have been seen from examples such as the hero play to close out Sin in the split 1 gauntlet from his Legacy predecessor in Lost, so Legacy will need to account for this. They will have entered free agency knowing they were not going to get as complete a player as Lost, and Raid is the best player to fit the aims of their roster construction, which is built around their solo laners.
Joining Raid in the bottom lane is Daniel “Decoy” Ealam. This move increases Legacy’s Elam/Ealam counter to two. Decoy came into a Regicide outfit that was kind of spinning its wheels with a subpar Kpop and after being fed to the wolves in his first match against the Chiefs was impressive on a team that began to ramp up through the two-man support rotation between himself and Chenxuan. His win/loss rate was quite poor, but so was Regicide’s, and his efforts in-game showed that there’s some talent that Decoy brings to the table. There’s not much more that can be said about Decoy’s young career, but given that Legacy needed to go to the Free Agent pool for a support there was probably only one or two other names that were on the same level of ability, so this addition locks up a solid if unspectacular botlane, and that’s frequently all you need when you build around your solo laners.
The last of these solo laners is Legacy’s shiny new import, Min “Mimic” Ju-seong. Mimic has a career path that has only spanned two full years but has plumbed the full range from the mighty KT Rolster all the way to the national leagues of Europe. Mimic was most recently on EU CS team Millennium where they endured a shocking time, winning only a single series and the roster disbanded before the org failed to requalify for the summer split of the Challenger Series. Mimic’s play in EUCS was best on tanks, though it is hard to pick out performances when he only won three games out of ten. He has been trying to augment this with some strong recent SoloQ play on Camille, Jax and Jayce in low KR master tier. Legacy have acknowledged in this pickup that they want to be able to control the game through solo lane play and have looked to the example set by Sin in 2017 that and concluded that importing was the best way to do it. Being able to secure even a journeyman import like Mimic is a huge boon for Legacy and the OPL as a whole and Legacy will be hoping his diverse experiences will fill the hole left by the departing Tally.
As a collection of names the players Legacy have picked up don’t fill you with the confidence that they will live up to the…institution…of success that the organisation has displayed. But what I like about this roster is that it’s been created with a plan in mind. They believe in their solo laners, and they secured a veteran jungler who prefers and looks best when he is ganking for his laners over controlling and being a teamfighting presence. Add into that a safe and solid botlane that you only want them not to overbalance the map and it’s clear to see Legacy’s path to success. All that’s left now is for Soulstrikes to get them firing and hope that talent doesn’t let them down.