While FPX eventually came out on top with the 2-1 victory, they had to fight for it twice. A Killjoy Turret bug voided the initial FPX win and forced the final round on Ascent to be replayed — and for a moment, it seemed as if the series could potentially have a different outcome.
By the time the match actually ended, it was past 2 a.m. in Istanbul, Turkey. Three additional rounds of overtime had also been played, after XSET won the replay.
Emotions were clearly running high on FPX’s side. In a post-match press conference, FPX in-game leader Kyrylo “ANGE1” Karasov made clear what he thought — replaying rounds hurts the competitive integrity of the game.
FunPlus Phoenix ANGE1: ‘We were all super angry’
In Round 24, XSET’s Killjoy Turret went off in the wrong direction, which meant that Rory “dephh” Jackson spent time holding A Heaven instead of looking in the direction where FPX were really coming from.
“I think there are a lot of bugs in any game. There are a lot of things happening in every match,” ANGE1 said. “It is not the best idea to replay rounds, especially after the match, because then teams will question all the bugs that have happened in the history of Valorant.”
“Should the round be replayed or not? That’s why I was really angry about it.”
At the same time, the hours-long gap between when the match ended and the replay meant that teams could have the chance to review gameplay footage or hold strategy discussions, although coach Don “Syyko” Muir has since confirmed that there was no opportunity to do so.
“I don’t think the round should have been replayed just because of the Turret bug,” added the FPX IGL. “It’s not our fault, we shouldn’t be involved in this.”
“I think it’s obvious for everyone watching that this bug is not something that big. From my point of view, it also ruins the competitive integrity of the game. With two hours between the games, they could have rewatched the match and figured out what we were doing.”
With their tournament lives on the line in the lower bracket, FPX were also understandably upset at Riot’s decision to replay the round. “We were all super angry,” said ANGE1. “This anger gave us energy.”
Coach Erik “d00mbr0s” Sandgren also talked about the difficulty of getting back into the right state of mind after thinking the match was over.
“When you win a game, you let all your emotions out and your energy level goes down,” he said. “To have to go back and get into the right mode again, especially in that crucial moment on the third map, is a really, really hard thing to do.”
FPX now advance to a rematch with DRX on September 17 at 1:00 a.m. GMT+8 | September 13, 10:00 a.m. PT | September 13, 5:00 p.m. GMT.