Onslaught eSports is thrilled to announce the acquisition of North American PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds team “Question Mark” to compete under the Onslaught brand for 2017-18. The perennial top-15 ranked team consists of players Han “SteeZybb” Tong, Kyle “The_Zek” Cote, Justin “S4v4g3” Andaluz, Tom “PistolaTime” Banel, Sam “COVNTER//CVLTURE” Mark, and Dave “BingBangBonk” Bonk and is a regular fixture on both the PUBG Online NA Showdown Series and individual PUBG leaderboards.
PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, typically referred to by its acronym “PUBG”, is one of the hottest emerging esports titles in 2017. A “battle royale” game type still in early access on PC and slated for additional release on the Xbox One console later in 2017, the game features 100 players (for competitive team play, broken into teams of 4 each) who parachute onto an island to scavenge for weapons and equipment in a kill-or-be-killed survival scenario. Featuring a huge starting map that slowly decreases the safe zone in size over the match to force encounters and tactical gameplay, the title has exploded in popularity with over 10 million copies sold within the last 6 months, and features heavy developer involvement, one of the hallmarks of successful esports scenes.
The team “Question Mark” is certainly anything but their former namesake, having been a consistent performer over the first 3 seasons of the unofficial pro league for competitive PUBG. Run by PUBG Online, a community organization who has developed both the exclusive Showdown Series and the Open Series for aspiring teams, the league already features some of the other top esports organizations in world including Elevate, Tempo Storm, Noble, Ronin, and Set to Destroy along with multiple former professional gamers. Joining the quickly expanding ranks of PUBG teams made perfect sense for Onslaught’s Jen Dalton, Chief Operating Officer.
“With Onslaught’s history of being involved in emerging esports titles, it made sense to keep our eye on PUBG. Based on the last few month’s results and the clinical approach “Question Mark” took to developing their roster, we are very excited to see how the next seasons of the Showdown Series play out.” commented Jen Dalton, COO.
Team Captain and IGL Han “SteeZybb” Tong echoed this sentiment, reflecting on the careful approach and how it fit well with Onslaught’s own analytical approach to entering PUBG. “Forming this team has been a long, methodical process that began with Dave and I. After a few months seeing all the other teams around us constantly imploding due to immaturity or ego I made it my mission to find players who were not only incredibly skilled at the game,but also had character that put them head and shoulders above everyone else. It was this same process that led us to committing to Onslaught. It is clear that the management here is more than capable, and with their longstanding history of success in various titles it was a no-brainer. I’m proud to represent Onslaught, and to be doing so alongside this much talent.”
Onslaught’s success in recognizing and developing top-level talent was not lost on Tom “PistolaTime” Banel, a former Rainbow Six: Siege professional player who was very familiar with Onslaught as a result and appreciative to finally have the long search for the right organizational representation finalized.
Said Banel, “Searching for an organization is always a long, difficult and pretty stressful task. In the timeframe orgs look at all the different teams, you know that you have to perform to make them choose you…increasing the stress on every single member of the team. At the same time you learn a lot about yourself and your team in those moments; if your team performs well despite all the additional stress, you know you have something huge going…this is exactly what happened with our team, we are stronger than ever and ready to take anyone head on.”
“Question Mark” has finished 15th, 17th, and is currently ranked 7th in the September 2017 season of the Showdown Series. The professional league features weekly matches pitting all teams against each other in a 3 game series, with points awarded in accordance with each squad’s final placing and each season running for 1 calendar month. The early season success is a possible harbinger of the long-term potential for the Onslaught roster according to Sam “COVNTER//CVLTURE” Mark.
Sam continued, “Since joining the team with Steezy and Bonk 2 months ago, it was immediately clear that we had chemistry; however, we needed to refine our play style and the rest of our lineup so that we could all play off of each other in a way that would help us reach our full potential. Through pub games and using the first two months of the Showdown Series as tryouts and practice, we found Pistola, then S4v4g3, then Zek, who all fit our rotation perfectly. Although this cost us placing in the early Showdown Series, we proved that we deserved our place by battling through the Promotional events, and intend to compete at the highest level in these coming seasons under Onslaught.”
With the recent decision by PUBG Online to change from 3rd person perspective game play to 1st person perspective (both viewpoints are supported in the game, and the merits and strategies involved in both are hotly contested topics) the scene is ripe for new talent and tactics to thrive. Kyle “The_Zek” Cote was excited for the switch, eager to combine some of the FPS skills the team possessed with the willingness to adapt and study the game.
When interviewed about the state of the game and the team’s potential, Cote was bullish. “Progression of the game since introducing first person this season has brought forth a new meta which we’ve taken time to watch film and study. Our team is working constantly, theory crafting new strategies which we plan to use going forward and test in scrims to keep at the highest level in not only the PUBG Online Showdown series but all high level competitive tournaments.”
With many of the shared values and traits as historically well-performing Onslaught teams, the future looks bright for #oSPUBG. Please join us in welcoming the entire team to Onslaught, and prepare for some excellent battle royale action!