It’s a combination of exploiting the meta and individual firepower.
Meta Matters is a series where we take a deeper look into the esports metagame. We’ll explore strategies used by the best teams and supplement that with our own research and statistics. Esports isn’t just a random group of people playing video games – the meta truly matters!
Among the pro players, MPL-ID is widely considered the pinnacle of competitive MLBB. Leading the Regular Season league standings after five weeks is Bigetron Alpha. After undergoing a roster change, they now top the charts and are looking to continue to dominate the league with an impressive and unmatched 7-1 record.
How did they do it? There are three aspects to which we can attribute their success.
Part 1: The Meta
The landscape of the MLBB competitive scene has been changed significantly by the battle spell, Flameshot. Previously, support heroes capable of building magic items were considered situational but have become a dominant pick even across the MLBB professional leagues so far. Now that the meta has shifted to what the Indonesian players call the “Flameshot meta,” teams are now prioritising these supports and their potential counters. Exploiting this meta, of course, includes Bigetron Alpha.
Secondly, the changes to the Red Buff, where Marksmen, Mages and Support heroes deal 50 (+50% Total Physical ATK) True Damage and slow their target by 30%, have increased the strength of Marksmen and Support heroes. This special attack has a 3 seconds cooldown. With this change, Marksmen now have access to a slow and true damage, which greatly increases their early game utility, allowing them to run down opponents. This further complements the “Weakness Finder” Marksman emblem.
Note: The advance server has nerfed the cooldown of Flameshot by 15 seconds. Whether that is a significant is still up in the air.
Part 2: Team Composition
Bigetron Alpha designs their victory composition like this:
- Off lane (their favoured pick is either Uranus or Thamuz)
- Support (Magic damage)
- Tank (can be switched out for another support if Diggie is in play)
- Mage (Harith/Lunox)
- Hyper Carry (Any Marksmen/Marksmen replacements)
You’re probably thinking that this just looks like any other composition and to be fair, you’re almost right. Take into consideration what used to be the dominant meta, 2 Tank compositions were viable thanks to the changes to Revitalize. Now the exact same thing is happening here except it is based around Flameshot.
With this skill, Support heroes can easily chain abilities with the help of Flameshot to set up kills for the team very early in the game. The early stages of MPL-ID games have been extremely aggressive because of the strength of this spell. And Bigetron have been quick to adopt this meta.
Part 3: Branz
The secret ingredient to Bigetron Alpha’s current success is this man right here. What teams have been trying to replicate, but unsuccessfully is what this carry brings to his team. A standard feature of Bigetron’s plays is to play defensively, depending on their opponent’s line-up until level 3-4. Then they will look to dive Branz’s lane. The strategy is simple, look to play towards the dominant side of the map and ensure Branz (the carry) gets enough gold and experience. The Red Aliens then proceed to destroy towers and will sacrifice the opposite tower if necessary. This cycle repeats until all tier 1 towers are razed. While this game plan is being executed, the team will funnel as much gold as they can to Branz until he hits critical mass. Fun fact: he is the player with the highest GPM in the league so far at 867 GPM.
His performances over the past few weeks are a testament to his individual strength. He was declared MVP for the first two weeks of the league, which helped give the team an early season lead. His Marksmen plays have been phenomenal. He has the third-highest kills in the league (107), averaging 5.7 per game. But neither has he always gone all-out to get kills. He has the second-lowest deaths per game, averaging just 1.2 deaths each game – that’s impressive considering he has played 18 games! His level of consistency is simply amazing!
With these three components, Bigetron Alpha has taken seven Bo3’s, with their only series lost against RRQ. Some might argue that Bigetron Alpha isn’t invincible, and to that, I agree. However, I will say that they are extremely difficult to beat with this composition until teams start adapting.
This may be my speculation but I can see that Bigetron is trying to diversify as they are aware that teams might find a way to counter their strengths. For example, when they lost to RRQ, they forced Zhask twice. Whether they continue to stay on top of the league or drop will be determined other teams finding an equivalent counter-meta. If teams can figure out that Baxia & Diggie was the answer to deal with the two Tank Revitalize meta, I’m confident that there will be an answer to this.
This is a guest post and the views expressed here are the author’s own. GideonQ is a caster and analyst for MPL-MY/SG Season 5.
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