We would like to share the latest updates on the NIP versus Anonymo Esports match and offer clarity surrounding what happened during and after the match.
The information communicated on Sunday 16th of May and the way that information has been shared by all the parties involved did not provide a clear and complete picture about the facts and decisions that happened, and we owe a sincere apology to everyone from the teams, to players and the rest of the community. No matter the level of complexity and the amount of discussions that were being managed, all official communication remains our responsibility and it should have been managed with significantly higher standards.
During the match of NIP versus Anonymo, the NIP players claimed before and during the match a significant amount of packet loss.The issues were only experienced by the NIP players and on multiple data centers and locations; this seemed to be a typical routing issue which is the responsibility of players/teams to address and solve, in order to play an online competitive match.
During all conversations, there had not been any official/formal agreement between the teams to postpone the match. While it is true that one Anonymo player posted a message in the in-game chat about the possibility of playing another day, it didn’t get presented in the official channels, where the management of Anonymo was requesting to resume the match according to the rules.
NIP’s first official request to not play the match was noted to be after the conclusion of Map 2, before going into Map 3. That being said, an admin could not, on a purely subjective basis, make the decision of postponing a match because one single team was claiming to have issues; because then any decisions of postponing a match taken on a similar basis could compromise the competitive integrity of every match. Therefore, the admin made the decision to force the players to conclude the match as per stated in the official ruleset.
On Saturday morning, the NIP management team advanced a formal request to replay the match by providing meaningful data and information to prove that the issues experienced by the players was not caused by anything that was under their control and therefore, based on the official ruleset, the match should have been replayed.
The admin team, after a preliminary investigation on the materials and information provided, agreed there was enough evidence to accept the claim and start a deep investigation to further understand the nature of the issue.
After more than 8 hours of tests and analysis, it was possible to identify the issue that was affecting the NIP players, which was caused by the security configuration of the server and that was causing severe and persistent packet loss for all the players, regardless of the data center, routing, usage of a VPN or any other options usually available for players and teams to avoid typical routing issues.
Based on that information, the league operations team decided to accept the request of NIP to replay the match and the decision was communicated to both teams on Saturday evening, 24 hours before the scheduled replay.
As per our decision, we offered Anonymo the choice to play either just the final map (Mirage), or the entire Best-of-Three. The single map of Mirage would take the stance of being the first official request of postponement by NIP. Giving both options to Anonymo had been decided by Flashpoint and agreed by NIP.
After that, a lot of information started circulating on public channels, some accurate, others less so, and we decided to postpone the schedule of the match to give everyone more time to reset and evaluate the situation, and also give the teams enough time to prepare for the match.
We’ve spoken at length with both teams and consulted the CSPPA, and on Monday, 17th May it has been confirmed that the third map of the Best-of-Three (Mirage) will be replayed on Tuesday, May 18th at 21:00 CEST. The Lower Bracket Round 1 match versus HYENAS will be moved to Wednesday, May 19th at 15:00 CEST to ensure the loser of Tuesday’s match does not have to play another match on the same day.
With this post, we tried to consolidate as much information as possible and hope to have at least provided a meaningful and comprehensive summary about why and how decisions have been made. We understand that not everyone will agree with the final outcome regardless, but at every stage of this process we’ve focused on making the decision we thought was best to provide a fair and competitive environment within a framework of constraints, all of which are defined within the official rulebook.
We also understand that the final decision and the rules that determined the overall outcome of our decision process may seem misaligned with the general sentiment and opinion of many professional players and community members, in particular about the possibility of replaying a match, no matter the reason.
Therefore, tomorrow we will be sharing with all the teams an updated version of the rules to better define the types of issues that will be taken into consideration, as well as how the rules should be applied and how to avoid having teams replay a match that would be more suitable to be rescheduled or deemed unplayable. We will also provide every team access to the game server at least 24 hours before the match to have enough time to investigate other potentially rare edge cases affecting poor internet performance of any genre and avoid having similar scenarios as the one that happened during and after the match in question.