Three elimination matches, with CIS and EU pitted against each other in one branch of the lower bracket and OG taking on LGD in the other. Only five teams remain in the tournament in the aftermath of Day 4. Chinese teams show absolute dominance, taking four out of five spots in the bracket. Team Liquid is the last hope of the Western Dota.
In Game 1 Team Liquid were allowed to take their signature Keeper of the Light for Liquid.gh. The early and mid game were pretty much a FWD.Resolut1on showdown, with him going on a massive kill streak, all with the benefits of track from VP.RodjER. However, once GH managed to get his hands on an Aghanim's Scepter Team Liquid gained a massive momentum swing. They came early in the morning and left at sunset with part of Empire's base in ruins.
In the second game Team Liquid went back to the basics with a Slardar+Lifestealer AND Oracle+Huskar combinations, while Empire answered with an Anti-Mage and the CIS specialty — Disruptor. It is unclear how Empire allowed all of this to go through the draft, but it cost them dearly. 30 minutes into the game they were forced to call GG, despite once again having a great start on FWD.Resolut1on.
OG stole LGD's Magnus as a first pick in their first game, but LGD answered in kind, by banning or picking pretty much all signature OG.JerAx heroes. The whole game was beautiful back and forth with LGD having a vision advantage during the night, courtesy of Night Stalker, while OG had a superior mobility and counter-initiation. The game is definitely worth watching, as both teams have executed almost perfectly with little to no mistakes.
Back to the basics for OG in the second game with a Magnus+Juggernaut combo, while LGD went for comfort Kunkka support, signature hero for the region. Draft heavily leaned towards LGD gaining early tempo, however a last pick Storm Spirit for LGD.Maybe slowed it down, especially against a OG.JerAx Nyx Assassin. It certainly showed in the laning stage, where OG managed to get massive momentum from several successful rotations and an early tower kill. This momentum hasn't translated into economic advantage, however, and when Storm finally got some items, LGD started applying immense pressure with their superior teamfight. Relying too much on Magnus ultimately cost OG their second game and they were eliminated with a top8 finish, but not without putting on one of the best spectacles of this tournament.
Once again, Liquid got their hands on their favorite KotL for Liquid.gh, once again putting their opponent on a clock. VP, however, went for an all-out aggressive draft, with tri-core of Necrophos, Bloodseeker and Venomancer, making for an extremely action-heavy early game. Once GH got his Aghanim's Upgrade, Liquid started doing their usual shenanigans, however a smart itemization from VP allowed them to repel aggression and even score some return kills. 30 minutes in, the game was dead even. And it lasted for 73 minutes more after that. Not all of it is worth watching, but the last 10 minutes of the game were quite entertaining.
Second game started off with Team Liquid stealing VP's signature Dark Seer and taking Slardar over Sand King, allowing the latter to be picked up by Virtus.Pro. VP all-ined on the early aggression with a position 1 Necrophos and mid Viper. Team Liquid went a bit greedier with Faceless Void and Liquid.Miracle- Invoker. After feeding two first kills to Liquid.MinD_ContRoL's Dark Seer, VP managed to recover economically with a superior laning stage and once they felt comfortable they started to play the regular Virtus.Pro Dota — aggressive, fast and bold. 30 minutes in Liquid lost two lanes of barracks and lost their ancient at 35.
Virtus.Pro once again drafted a heavy teamfight lineup with Magnus, Slardar, Ancient Apparition, Queen of Pain and Faceless Void, while Team Liquid decided not to fight them head-on, but rather rely on split-push from both Anti-Mage and Nature's Prophet. Once again a very patient and even early game from both teams, as they traded blows without a clear economic or momentum winner until 25 minutes in a series of mistakes from VP allowed Liquid to take control over the map and split-push VP into elimination.