After 2 weeks of intense fighting and drama we have the 30 World Cup 2016 Finalists!
It is done.
We now know who are the 30 national teams to determine which one of them will be the worthiest to be crowned Imperia Online World Champion for 2016.
The last two weeks we saw it all.
We saw how easy the Group Stage can be for some of the leading teams, like the defending world champion Croatia, their main wannabe-rival Poland, the always solid and ready to fight for medals Romania and, of course, the ever vigilant and tough teams of Argentina, Brazil and Bulgaria. All of these teams had no problems winning their groups and, in some cases, to decide the fate of some of the teams in their groups.
Yes, life is not fair, when you have to deal with the most powerful teams in this tournament. Germany felt it in Group one, as it could not find its way to any of the castles during the entire phase and, despite its best efforts, it could not make a descent stand against Croatia, Russia and USA.
Saudi Arabia, Ukraine and Hungary felt it too, as they were unable to realize the one and single truth that you need influence points, in order to have even the slightest chance to be among the final 30 teams.
Probably the greatest excitement for us, viewers in this tournament, was the 2 weeks struggle of Italy, the Group 5’s “Top Dog”. The bronze medalist from World Cup 2013 were totally shocked by the triple tag-team of Spain, Albania and Canada, which wasted no time in conquering and defending all the castles in their quadrant, leaving the Italians struggling and sweating on the 4th position, fearing for their place in the finals until the very last day of the Group Stage.
This year’s Group Stage is also the Underdog’s year. Because we witnessed the first time in the history of the tournament, in which Turkey and Serbia did not win their groups. Turkey’s arrogance was punished by Lithuania and its stellar leader Risaras in Group 4 and Georgia totally stole the entire Group Stage show with its amazing and total domination over Serbia in Group 3. Probably out of frustration Turkey made a last day attempt to deny Greece from the Finals, by giving a castle to Venezuela, but the Greeks discovered the foul play in time and managed to assault the still undefended Venezuelan castle and gain just enough influence points to fly into the finals.
Speaking of medieval schemes, Brazil and its South American neighbors Ecuador and Uruguay also tried to pull one on the small but very tough team of Bosnia and Herzegovina and tried to isolate it, but the Bosnians were not the ones who would fall into this trap. Ultimately the Balkans managed to cut the triple knot in their group and finished 3rd, leaving Uruguay to tremble for its place in the finals right until the Group Phase’s very end.
All in all we have once again watched a very interesting Group Phase and we saw some new “players” coming on the big stage, declaring their intentions to make the leading teams a run for their money. Well done to them!
We have an extremely interesting Grand Finale ahead of us.
It all starts on November 18th, 3 PM Server Time.
And 2 weeks later we will have a new World Champion!
Good luck, finalists!