Photo: By Adam Lakomy for ESL
‘Chiu on This’ is a short and regular opinion blast
One of the most interesting aspects of Furia’s qualification to IEM Katowice was their CT-side aggression. In this blog, I’ll be looking at a four man mid control setup that the team used throughout their qualifier. Furia played Mirage against three different teams in their run: eUnited, Envy, and INTZ.
They pulled out this four man mid-aggression in six different rifle rounds. It was fairly successful against the two NA teams and something I suspect will catch teams off guard the first time they face it. Here is a basic outlet of the setup and it’s possible variations:
Image Key: The filled blue circles is is where each player starts off the round. Empty Blue circles is where each player can potentially end up moving depending on how the mid battle pans out. The purple lines designate a particular player throwing a grenade. White is for smoke, yellow is for a molotov. I haven’t bothered with flashes as it made the map even more unclear.
In terms of ordering, the player who makes first contact is arT. He has a few moves. He can take the typical AWP angle from window down mid, if he has the spawn, he can swing and surprise people from the far side of window, or he can drop down and smoke off underpass while holding mid with his AWP.
The second contact is yuuri. If arT decides to stay in window, he throws a smoke to cover him from underpass while trying to look for aggressive duels down mid. Able can either cover his flank from connector or take an aggressive stance from connector to trade yuuri. Finally, VINI has two choices. After throwing his smoke, he can get onto the fence and be the 4th player to trade for mid (or control underpass), or if Furia lose out the trades in mid before he is in position, he goes to catroom and plays passively.
What made this CT-setup so effective is that if anyone does any variation of fast mid control, Furia should win out with the man advantage and mass utility usage. If the Ts send one-two players through underpass, they will either get smoked out or run into VINI and able trading that area. If they run three players mid, then Furia will naturally trade them out. If the Ts try to molly connector, Furia will use their own smoke to put it out and run through. They will also consistently throw flashes into mid to try to get favorable duels.
While this setup increases the chances of winning mid control and leaving the CTs in a power play situation if they get into a firefight, it has flaws. If a team has studied their moves, then the hardest counter is a fast explosive execute on either A or B. These are riskier moves in that Furia also like using CT-side setups that emphasize the wings to try to control B-halls and Tcon. The better answer is to delay mid control a bit as it takes Furia a massive amount of utility to pull off this setup. This is what INTZ did in their game against Furia at the Minor.