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Russia wins Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds Nations Cup, UK manages not to come last

Competitive Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds is a strange beast. Teams rack up points across multiple games for eliminating others and being one of the last few left alive, in various amounts depending on the tournament. That usually means that you can tell who’s going to win before the end, but not this time. Home team South Korea had pulled ahead early and stayed there – until the last game, where Russia pipped them to the post. And down at the bottom of the table, Great Britain managed to save themselves from last place by a single point.

Having assumed South Korea would take it from their initial lead, I spent much more time speculating about who would end up sixteenth of sixteen teams. Plus, esports could use a little more Eurovision energy, so I was hoping for the UK to come in dead last. They were hovering around there for most of the three-day event, including when I checked in one day to hear this immediately.

Today they picked up a little, before once again tumbling all the way down. The last game was basically a battle between them and Finland to see who would rank bottom. Both had a couple of players eliminated early, but Britain managed to eke out the victory (insofar as it can be called that).

Their single point lead on Finland was actually a big part of spoiling Korea’s day, as they picked off Cha “Pio” Seunghoon early. Simultaneously spoiling my fun and the fun of the home crowd. Boo.

Russia also had players dropped to the USA and Canada, but they were on a tear. Despite being eliminated in ninth to Korea’s tenth, their extra points for eliminations gave them the win in the end.

“You even have the Korean crowd showing up and showing the respect to Russia,” said one commentator, as the winning team lifted the cup, but, ah, it was a lot quieter than when Korea were doing well in-game. Still, there’ll always be the quasi-rematch at the Global Championships taking place this November.

During this event I also discovered that there’s an entire Twitch channel just dedicated to showing the game’s map (and a few rolling stats, like who’s got the most kills and how many players from each team are still alive). I do like watching from this angle, letting you focus on who you want and the overall picture rather than having to follow the spectators’ whims. It also makes it look like the whole game is made up of very angry colour-coded ants. And I think that’s neat.

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Jay Castello

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Jay writes about video games, falls down endless internet rabbit holes, and takes a lot of pictures of flowers.

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