The Vancouver Titans Needed a Loss To Become Even Stronger

Matt Buchholtz,

May 15, 2019 11:19 AM

A team that improves every time they are defeated, the Vancouver Titans needed a loss in the Overwatch League to grow stronger. Disagree? Let me tell you the tale of a little team called Runaway...

Hot take: The San Francisco Shock winning the Stage Two Overwatch League Finals is the best thing that could happen to the Vancouver Titans. I know, a bit confusing, but trust me; things are about to get good.

The Past

You see, watching APEX (a Korean Esports Tournament airing on OGN) is what got me hooked on competitive Overwatch. It was a league packed with storylines and characters. It got my attention and had me tuning in early mornings at the gym and at night when picking up around the house. It was there that I fell in love with a scrappy team known as Runaway. They played with their hearts on their sleeves, but never quite seemed to be able to bring home the championship. They endured numerous monetary and emotional struggles, but they were a family, and no matter how many losses they took or challenges they faced, they always found some way to get back up and try again.

When Overwatch Contenders Korea took over APEX’s role, Runaway finally secured the championship in Season Two that fans had been dreaming of. It was beautiful, poetic, and the last game that the roster played together as Runaway. This was good news, however, as it was revealed that due to hard work from team management—most notably team GM Lee "Flowervin" Hyuna—the entire roster was getting signed to the same Overwatch League team, the brand new Vancouver Titans.

The Present

Now, let’s fast-forward through all the Vancouver Titan things you already know: they were undefeated, they won the Stage One Championships, they had fun playing the “Bad Boys” of the league, etc. The Titans were able to rely on their absolutely incredible synergy and history to deliver win after win, but I don’t feel that they ever felt truly challenged outside of facing the San Francisco Shock.

“I always thought of Vancouver, New York, and San Francisco as a top three,” said Sung-jun "SLIME" Kim of the Titans via a translator last week. “But since we beat New York, Vancouver and San Francisco are top two now.”

(Photo Credit Robert Paul for Blizzard Entertainment)
(Photo Credit Robert Paul for Blizzard Entertainment)

This lack of a challenge really goes against the Runaway mindset. Without something to overcome, it’s hard to push yourself or to identify what you could work on. The Vancouver Titans are as good as they are now because of the hits they took in Runaway. As much as people want to say that Overwatch League is not an anime, this roster will only get stronger and stronger now that a rival has appeared.

“I was very happy it was a long streak,” said Main Tank for the Titans, Sang-beom "Bumper" Park. “I really enjoyed it.”

“This time I think they planned a little bit more than [us],” said Jooseok "Twilight" Lee. “They were a better team today. We made some mistakes we usually don’t.”

“There were a lot of unusual mistakes, and we weren’t able to execute the plans we had planned,” continued SLIME. “In Stage Three we will be able to perfect it.”

The Future

To me, these quotes ring authentic and true to the soul of the team. The heartbreak, the honesty, the determination; all classic Runaway. For those who haven’t seen what comes next (the ups, the downs, the crying, the punching out ceiling tiles) let me tell you what happens next: they come back stronger than ever.

The Vancouver Titans next take the stage against the Atlanta Reign on June 8th. 


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