This November has been filled to the brim with high-octane Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds action. The PUBG Global Championships saw 32 teams gather from across the globe. After 48 total matches played over two weeks, Gen.G from the PUBG Korea League has triumphed over the rest of the field to claim the lion’s share of $4 million.
THEY STAND ON TOP AND HOIST THE TROPHY AS CHAMPIONS OF THE WORLD HERE AT #PGC19! CONGRATULATIONS TO THIS AMAZING KOREAN SQUAD! ??
— PUBG Esports (@PUBGEsports) November 25, 2019
Gen.G’s journey at PGC began as a humble one. While their squad is exploding with talent, they came in as the PKL’s fourth seed. This was reflected in their Group Stage performance, which saw them struggle to get going early. Fortunately, a 12 kill Chicken Dinner in the final game gave Gen.G enough points to advance in the seventh slot of eight from group A.
For semifinals, Gen.G was placed into group B, forcing them to play the first two days of the round-robin. At this point, they were still a sort of fringe team: playing well enough to advance but not expected to contend for the top. Day one saw them nab 30 points when the expected cutoff was around 60.
An above-average day two netted Gen.G 44 points and a ticket to finals. While they didn’t earn a Chicken Dinner during this stage, their consistency shot up towards the end in an omen of things to come.
The biggest story of Semifinals was FaZe Clan. The top European seed had just completed a Cinderella story at the last possible second. They sat in the last place going into the final game and pulled out one of the biggest games in PUBG history, 18 kills and a win against two other bubble teams.
The week break passed by and coming into Grand Finals, no one looked more refreshed than Gen.G. The Korean giants dominated the first two games of the day, earning an absurd 42 points right out of the gate. At the end of day one, Gen.G was sitting at the top with 56 points.
FaZe Clan was ready to show their ravenousness in matches six and seven, where they took two consecutive wins of their own, each with double-digit kills. While FaZe was gaining on the leaders, Gen.G didn’t get complacent. Their first two games of day two both ended in second place with double-digit kill totals as well.
With everything on the line, the real competitors separated themselves. 4 Angry Men, the top Chinese squad, snagged two Chicken Dinners and closed in on the top. FaZe also placed well in every match leading to the finale. Gen.G had faltered slightly, only earning 3 points in their next three games. It all came down to the last match of the tournament.
What started as a three-horse race for the title quickly dropped to two, as 4 AM went down in fifteenth place. FaZe and Gen.G both had plans to go hunting for points, but disaster struck for FaZe as they lost two members early.
Despite being at half-mast, they powered through to the top three. Even after helping to take down Gen.G, the European squad didn’t have the manpower rake in more kills. Gen.G finished the final game in fourth place with 10 kills, securing the PGC 2019 Championship.
Gen.G walks away with at least $2 million. Half of the prize pool is theirs alone, as well as the bonus money earned from Pick’Em Challenge votes. As the winners of the biggest and most important PUBG esports event yet, they have also earned the right to be called the best in the world.
While PUBG’s esports scene is still early in development, this year has been a giant step forward. With standardized rulesets, operational league systems, and more partners and organizations buying in, the future looks bright. Gen.G will no doubt look to continue their success in 2020 alongside everyone else.
Written by Zakaria Almughrabi