June 15, 2024

So, ArkAngel and Mineski have reached the quarterfinals of the Asia Minor SEA qualifiers, which will give room for two teams to go to the prestigious tournament.

Obviously, the winner of the entire thing will represent Asia in the FACEIT Major in London. But then, both teams have been eliminated in the 1/8 final…

The question is…how does it look from here?

As a fan of CS and Philippine Counter-Strike, it is just sad and frustrating to see the fact that the teams that I actively support are unable to reach the Asia Minor.

Anyone who follows Philippine FPS history closely know well that apart from two small Asian titles that Mineski won somewhere in 2016 (plus the various second-place finishes they had at big contests)…the last big-name trophy that the country has won in CS:GO was back in 2013, when Smackdown won the Asian Cyber Games.

However, when one looks at it in an objective manner, two things come out:

  1. There are more Filipino teams in the Asian scene than ever. Yes, it is true that we lagged behind the likes of Thailand (last time I checked, they have two teams in the Asian top 10), Indonesia (one team in the Asian top 10, two very good players named BnTeT and xccurate and tons of good teams) and Singapore (Dreamscape has just beaten Asian #1 TyLoo to get the slot for ESL One Cologne, which is basically one of the most prestigious CS:GO tournaments in the world). Yet, one can’t deny that Mineski is up there (10th place), ArkAngel has grabbed everyone’s notice and TNC has been making strides in their international appearances, not to mention the several lower-tier Filipino teams who have made headlines in various smaller Asian tournaments. In other words, THIS TIME AROUND, WE ARE GETTING BETTER…for REAL.
  2. This is practically the most convincing placing that we have so far. In a high-stakes competition such as the Asian Minor, getting to the top eight AMONG HUNDREDS of TEAMS is A HUGE ACHIEVEMENT in ITSELF. In addition, we had…worse runs (to put it bluntly) in the other Minor qualifiers that we’ve participated, so when anyone looks at it from the side of a neutral observer, it can be said that the Philippines is actually starting to improve.

Now, everyone knows that TNC, ArkAngel and Mineski are considered to be the “Big Three” of Philippine CS:GO this season.

There is no better time than this year for these teams to show that they can make Philippine CS:GO history this year…or should I say Philippine esports history?

This target is going to be hard and wrought with challenges.

But with experience and talent on our side, I’d like to think that we can actually do it within this season…or the next one (if things don’t work out).*

After all, as a manager of a prominent Asian team has told me, “There’s no deadline for teams to catch up. If they put the time and effort (needed to improve their gameplay), they will get better (results for sure).”

Personally, I would be happy if:

  • A Filipino team gets to the Minor
  • A Filipino team wins a qualifier to an international tournament
  • A Filipino team wins a decent-sized Asian championship

I do hope that the Philippine scene can do it this year!

*Edited to reflect better language

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