The quarterfinals for OGN Overwatch APEX Season 1 kicked off as South Korea's Afreeca Freecs Blue faced off with Europe's REUNITED in one of the closer best-of-fives in the tournament. What was interesting about this set is that both teams excel very clearly on different types of maps. Maps like Lijiang Tower are a definite strong point for Afreeca so it was no surprise to see them take a swift and convincing win there. The second map was Numbani, where the opposite was shown, and REUNITED delivered as the clear favorite to win this map.
Despite the fact that both teams are so lopsidedly talented at different map types, the set was so close that no one can deny that they were equally matched in mechanics and team coordination. With the new patch throwing most ideas up in the air however, it was hard to determine whether or not they were picking what was optimal for the meta.
REUNITED attempted a full hold with Torbjörn on the first point of Numbani after the buffs. Afreeca's Jung "Recry" Taekhyun, while carrying his team to victory on Pharah, also had his fair share of fault for losing Route 66 to REUNITED due to hero-switching. Because ultimates take longer to charge now in the new patch, swapping a hero multiple times is punishing as it resets the amount of charge one has in their ultimate gauge. Despite this, Afreeca Freecs Blue won the final map, Hollywood, and took the set 3-2 to advance to the semifinals, and REUNITED is knocked out of the tournament.
Afreeca vs. REUNITED proved a hard act to follow for the second quarterfinal match between South Korean teams BK Stars and LW Blue. In sharp contrast to the first match, this set ended in a blazingly quick 3-0 sweep by BK Stars. Few words can describe the match other than Chae "Bunny" Joonhyuk playing Tracer as he usually does, shattering LW Blue to pieces repeatedly on all three maps of Nepal, King's Row, and Volskaya Industries. There was little LW Blue could do, especially when Bunny was getting five-man Pulse Bomb kills with brilliant setups from the rest of his teammates. As such, the rowdy gang of high schoolers advance to the semifinals and send LW Blue home with a disappointing loss.