‘Chiu on This’ is a short and regular opinion blast
I have spent an inordinate amount of time pondering the Dallas Fuel. Who could blame me? They were into the Overwatch League with such high hopes and now they are the second worst team in the league with Mayhem’s recent uptick. If things keep going the way they are, they could possibly get upset by the Shanghai Dragons come Stage 4. So what happened?
I don’t know. I’ve never focused my study on the team organizations before as many of the moves I saw made sense at the time. There are only so many limited incentives you can think of for a particular roster move and they almost all fall on the competition to money scale. The choices usually boil down to a combination of this is the best player, this is the best player we can get right now, and this is the only affordable player we can get right now.
So I went about studying. I looked into the esports history archives, but I couldn’t find anything comparable. I went into sports like basketball, but didn’t find much there. I went into psychology, mythology, economics, politics, ancient Shindo practices, basically anything I could think of that was even tangentially right. But the answer was right in front of me the entire time. It was something I’ve ignored for the better part of 8 years, but it was twitch chat all along.
Or more specifically, Twitch Chat Plays Pokemon. For those who don’t know, there was a seminal event in Twitch Chat history (essentially their version of the moon landing) where they played pokemon by inputs into twitch chat. This event is the skeleton key. If we use it correctly, we can almost perfectly figure out and predict what has happened and is going to happen in the Dallas Fuel.
Don’t believe me?
Think about this, Red is the player avatar. The avatar in this case is hastr0. Much like Red, hastr0 has seemingly no control over his actions. If you read his AMA, he both gives full control to KyKy and takes it away. He both makes the decisions as CEO and the entire team makes decisions regarding the roster.
The starting pokemon in the initial run is a Charmander named ABBBBBBK or Abby for short. Charmander is a fire dragon pokemon. The obvious analogue here is KyKy. He started off as the leader of the team and just like Abby, was released part way through.
The first pokemon that is caught is a pidgey, later known as Bird Jesus. EFFECT is clearly Bird Jesus. The strongest player on the team and the player fans congregate around and devote their lives to.
Just like Dallas Fuel, everything went fine back when they had no big investors. But once they went from EnVyUs to Dallas Fuel was when all of the viewers started showing up and screwing up the twitch chat. At this point we need to make a reference to something else. I did say it only “almost” perfectly explains everything.
The other reference I used was The Matrix, a 1999 film where the protagonist is named NEO. In that movie NEO finds out the world around him is a simulation and he must break free from the chains to save humanity. He is taught this by Morpheus who is one of the first to understand what is going on.
In Dallas Fuel, xQc is Morpheus. Think about it, as the best streamer on the team, he quickly figures out that the team is controlled by twitch chat. However the powers that be cannot allow him to break the simulation so they send hunters after him to report him to Blizzard and get fined/suspended. He tries to break free from the system and warn the others with the twitch emotes by asking people to try hard, but that permanently kicks him out of the simulation. At which point he must gather recruits once they leave the system to start a revolution (why do you think KyKy and Rascal showed up to his house?)
In Twitch Plays Pokemon, he is the proto-anarchist. The first one to give the idea of government to the others before he is forced out. I suspect he was rattatta (JLVWNNOOOO a.k.a. Jay Leno) as he saw little to no play time, but is still beloved by fans despite doing nothing.
As Hersh invested into Dallas Fuel for Overwatch League, the amount of “viewers” increased so now more people could play Twitch Chat plays Overwatch League. This is where things start getting weird.In Twitch Plays Pokemon, the pokemon were forced to learn the wrong moves, Red was forced to command the wrong combinations of moves, the wrong pokemon were released, and it was an overall terrible time. The then disparate groups of people controlling TPP went to their forums to strategize how they could govern the simulation.
The Dallas Fuel did something similar. Outside of Bird Jesus a.k.a. EFFECT, they had no clue what they were doing. They fielded different roster after different roster, lost cocco along the way, had players go into different roles, and had no guiding voice (just like twitch chat). After each game, all of the players/coach went onto social media to complain to their groups about how bullshit everything was, while the owners/managers strategize how they could get their vision of what to do correct.
Just look at the A.M.A. of hastr0. The line how KyKy had complete control, but I forged him to put in a player (and then he self-praises himself because they win that week), is a classic line that used to be uttered when people were battling over Twitch Plays Pokemon.
Also, just like Twitch Plays Pokemon, random people were released that had no reason to be released. Custa was traded, KyKy was kicked out after being given “complete control”, and Rascal was released and the Dallas Fuel makes it sound like he’s a bad asset.
Custa was either BigDig or C3KO because he had a lot of potential as a leader and player, but couldn’t show it. Rascal was clearly the False Prophet. A strong pokemon, but for whatever reason the players decided he was evil incarnate, specifically tried to release him into the wild, and then made him out to be evil (shoutout to winz, the brother of aKm).
The final part that gave it away is the constant battle for anarchy and democracy going on in the Fuel. For those who don’t know, there were two modes of play. The first was anarchy, everyone do what they want. Then there is democracy where people had to vote for the next action and majority wins the move. I knew we were in anarchy before as random things kept happening from fines, suspensions, a bowel movement forcing seagull to become the off tank, etc. Then I realized the game mode had switched as it went from anarchy to democracy as KyKy was voted off the island and Hastr0 talked about how unlike every other organization in esports, he had no way of stopping his players complaining on social media.
I don’t know what happens next, only that they will soon have more players playing Twitch Chat plays Overwatch League as they are apparently hiring more support staff. Of course the biggest secret remains a mystery, what is the Helix Fossil of the Dallas Fuel?
I have my own suspicions that the Helix Fossil is cocco and on the next stage, he will be reborn from from the fossil to once again take his rightful place as a working member of the team. Until then, every Dallas play will simultaneously say they love him, but refuse to let him go play anywhere else.
There is one problem with my theory however. History tells us that Twitch Chat eventually did beat Pokemon. Somehow I doubt Dallas Fuel will ever beat the Overwatch League, but if they try hard enough, maybe they can beat Shanghai Dragons come stage 4.