Well then, not the most hyped clash between 2 teams but it’s certainly drama-worthy to say the least. It’s Aggressive Mode versus Ninjas in Pyjamas, but really all I see is Lil versus PPD. The history and tension between these two players dated way back to the International 2019, and no, Lil did not play in TI9. Instead, it was right after Virtus.pro, the CIS team that looked so strong that the earned the title as the Major Kings, got eliminated too early. And that’s when things begin to look spicy, Lil wrote a long tweet regarding VP kicking him and how it was a bad decision for them to do so as seen in their TI9 performance. But he immediately got slapped in the face (quite literally) by PPD who scolded him for being toxic as all Lil was doing is flaming VP every time they lose.
Dramas aside, we finally get to see Lil play in quite a formidable team. Although they did not qualify for the major nor the minor, Aggressive Mode still have a decent lineup. In game 1, NIP started off with a very disgusting draft, having picked Void Spirit, Lifestealer and Lina as its cores. Void Spirit in this game was played as the offlane by Lelis. Such a strong draft was perfected even more with Shadow Demon being picked as a support that can easily disrupt enemy combos with his Disruption while saving his ally. The one-sided game eventually ends after Aggressive Mode’s attempted sneaky Roshan attack was discovered by PPD. As the rest of NIP know what they were up to, they came immediately to fight Aggressive Mode and teamwiped them.
Game-winning scan by NIP: https://youtu.be/VB-txJxZa_k?t=3252
Heading into the second game, Aggressive Mode somewhat learnt what really won the game for NIP, which is the defensive plays by UNIVERSE on his Shadow Demon. Thus, they did not hesitate to ban that hero instantly this time around, including another defensive support, Oracle. This game, Aggressive Mode switched to a more aggressive mode, picking every hero that could initiate into NIP. From Ember Spirit to Slardar, but even the support, Lil played Dark Seer. The game looked like a hunting game, where Aggressive Mode just want to constantly take fights and NIP just couldn’t respond to the aggression.
With the series tied, the final game turned out even more exciting as we witness a close game played by the two teams. NIP had a good early game, with Lifestealer getting a free farm lane all to himself. Although NIP lost their offlane, their offlane Puck (by Liposa) still managed to go online after securing the levels, allowing him to start fights. NIP managed to secure a decent lead at midgame after a disastrous fight by Aggressive Mode. In their attempt to quickly kill TANNER’s Shadow Fiend, he countered it with his ultimate which feared the enemies away while his team kills them off. Unfortunately, this play alone wasn’t enough for NIP to secure this game. NIP decided to fight confidently as their cores had BKB but Aggressive Mode’s damage output were too much for NIP to absorb as we see Shadow Fiend get instantly destroyed despite still having BKB activated.
Counter-initiation by A-Mode: https://youtu.be/VB-txJxZa_k?t=11762
The game eventually come to an end, all props to Ursa having Abyssal Blade, immediately killing any NIP heroes so unfortunate to be a target. Perhaps Lil is feeling a taste of sweet revenge after this game against the team led by PPD, who once opposed his morals. However, there’s no time for celebration just yet, as Lil’s A-Mode will face off against the boys over at Nigma to determine who will be the top 4 in Tug-of-War: Mad Moon. Stay tuned.