If you are a faithful follower of the Starcraft II e-Sports scene, you were likely glued to your computer screen yesterday, frantically refreshing the Evil Geniuses website after a masterful viral campaign featuring a series of tantalizing and infuriatingly opaque teasers hit the web, hinting at some kind of epic game-changing announcement.
And by now, you already know the big news – that Liquid.HuK is Liquid no more. EG has officially acquired him. He will join PuMa (acquired earlier this year) and EG’s resident ace IdrA in a new EG-sponsored pro house in Korea.
Undoubtedly, this is one of the biggest shifts in SCII history.
HuK has been on a tear recently, posting impressive showings in every major event he has entered as well as winning two huge international tournaments, Dreamhack 2011 and HomeStory Cup III.
It seems that EG has been contemplating their move for quite some time, and with HuK’s recent impressive showings, they “didn’t want to spend another year looking in from the outside” and thus made him an offer he couldn’t refuse. HuK, for his part, wants his fans to know that despite what team colors he wears, he’s still the same old Jenny from the Block:
“I’m excited about my future with EG, and I’m looking forward to training with all of my teammates, especially IdrA and PuMa in Korea. I know that some of my fans might be upset that I’m joining EG, but I hope that most will continue to support me regardless of what shade of blue I’m wearing ^^.”
His departure from Liquid means not only that they are losing their strongest player, but that the organization that has always been the hub of foreigner talent is no longer fielding the preeminent SCII team.
Understandably, feelings are somewhat bruised on the Liquid team, but they understand. It’s business, after all. Victor “Nazgul” Goosens, owner of Team Liquid, responded:
“We’re sorry to see Chris go. Not only is he an excellent player, but he was a close friend to the team. We did everything we could to keep him on Liquid, but in the end Chris made the choice he thought was best. We respect his decisions regarding his career, and wish him luck with Evil Geniuses.”
There is no question in anyone’s mind that in terms of sheer star power, the combination of HuK and IdrA batting for EG will be a formidable force to contend with. In addition, the move may be just what IdrA needs to pull him out of his slump.
The “bad-boy of pro-gaming”, whose rivalry with HuK (as well as his rivalry with just about everyone else who plays Starcraft) is already the stuff of legend, has been struggling lately. A chance to live in South Korea and train with HuK and PuMa may be exactly what he needs to get his head back into the game.
And the fact that HuK and IdrA will now be teammates – and roommates – is potentially rife with the kind of shenanigans to make RTS nerds everywhere giggle like schoolgirls.
The community now waits with bated breath to see what kind of developments will arise, but there is one result that everyone will expect – greatness.