“Frustrating is the theme of the day,” Daniel "Drakos" Drakos says partway through the last game of Day 2 in the Worlds Play-Ins stage. And he was right! From multiple useless crocodile first picks, to Syndra ADC failing to come to fruition, to games stalling out endlessly with neither team boasting any initiative. Even LCK giant, Damwon Gaming, had some frustrating moments of their own after somewhat shaky starts to both of their games. And while arguments could easily be made for Jang “Nuguri” Ha-gwon, Kim "Canyon" Geon-bu, and Heo “Showmaker” Su as the Worlds 2019 Play-In Day 2 MVP, the winner must go to the VCS mid laner, Nguyễn "Artifact" Văn Hậu.
Coming in as the first ever VCS 2nd Seed, Lowkey Esports end the day 1-1 after losing to MEGA and taking down HKA. In their first game, Lowkey struggled with engage, siege potential, DPS, and just overall closing out a lead. LK had chosen three melee carries with a Syndra for their bot laner and no real tank. Their opponents, MEGA, were able to dictate the entire pace of the game with their more standard comp. However, locking in the nerfed Akali (nerfed?), he survived lane against The (newly reworked) Unbreakable Spear, Pantheon, and was the sole LK member to fending off MEGA and holding onto the possibility of victory for the Vietnamese squad.
Artifact utilized Akali’s full potential to find multiple picks throughout the game, swinging things back in LKs favor. Unfortunately, Atit "Rockky" Phaomuang’s Camille got too far ahead, and a final Baron fight went the way of MEGA, sending Artifact and the Vietnamese squad out with a loss.
In their second game, however, Artifact utilized the InvenGlobal Day 1 Champion pick, Tristana, to snowball a lead into a dominant victory. He ended the game with an 11/3/1 KDA and over a 6,000 gold lead over opposing mid laner. After roaming down to an early skirmish in the bot lane and then calling for his jungler immediately after, Artifact had 3 kills before 5 minutes.
He continued pressuring the map with that lead, constantly roaming into the river getting vision on the HKA jungler, buffering rocket jumps perfectly to stay safe when necessary. LK used his long range siege and dive capabilities well, rotating the Yordle Gunner around from objective to objective, making sure to never let off the gas and allow any breathing room for the LMS 3rd seed.
While the whole top side from Korea earns honorable mentions for today, Artifact takes the title. DWG outclassed their opponents each game, but that is to be expected. Artifact stepped up in the exact way he needed to and rightfully takes MVP for Day 2 of this Play-In stage.