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Top Ten Starcraft 2 Personalities/Pros of 2013
Starcraft, the world's best e-sport.
Here are my favorite pros/personalities. They have either excellent tournament performances, great live streaming, top cash earnings, community building, or they're just simply starcraft legends.
Day9. Day9 has been central to my continued interest in Starcraft 2. He produces a daily show at day9.tv with thousands of live viewers for each of the 595 episodes he's done so far. Every single one of them is available on demand for free via his website.
On Monday he sets up a sets a restraint for his viewers; displaying the best submissions of the week on his show "Funday Monday" rich with comedic segues, rants, and immortal impersonations. Tuesday-Thursday he analyzes Starcraft topics of top pros and tries to teach strategy in a way for a large audience to understand. Recently on Fridays he has been playing other games. Some classic moments have been watching him play Amnesia, building forts of barrels to hide behind, and cries of terror throughout.
Day9 is the most popular caster in America. He has hosted many popular tournaments such as Dreamhack, Blizzcon, Major League Gaming, Intel Extreme Masters, and Blizzard's latest "Master tournament" the Starcraft World Championship. As a winner of a Pan American Championship and three time World Cyber Game finalist he casts knowledgeably in an inimitable style all his own.
2. Husky Starcraft
One of the most beloved youtube personalities, Husky Starcraft takes it upon himself to dabble in a bit of everything. From starring in original music videos to reviewing games in the starcraft arcade, his main focus seems to be entertainment and entertain he does.
Currently he holds over 800,000 youtube subscribers. My favorite recent series he has been working on is Bronze League Heroes. Where he casts "the very best of the very worst" in an enlivened style.
His music video Banelings (see below) has achieved 10 million hits. He is always fun to watch.
DeMuslim is a top ten grand master Terran player. I include him in my top three because I consider him to be the best live streamer of actual starcraft 2 games. He is personable and extremely skilled. You can watch his stream at twitch.tv at the following link:
Some notable achievements:
In January 2011 he got signed with team EG. A couple weeks later he placed third at IEM - Season 5. He had the best beta W:L record (199-63) according to tl.net. He was the first player to be ranked #1 GM in two regions (NA & EU).
He named himself DeMuslim because he is a fan of Muhammad Ali.
Jung "Mvp" Jong Hyun, from South Korea, sets the bar for pro Terran players. He won the GSL four-times, reaching the finals six times. On top of that he's taken gold at an IEM, a WCG, a BlizzCon, and a MLG.
When it comes to Starcraft 2 there just hasn't been anyone more successful. His SC2 prize pool is king currently sitting at $373,520.
MC, aka the Boss Toss, is the best Protoss player in the world. He currently plays on team SK-gaming and was born in South Korea.
MC is the first player ever to win two GSL tournaments. He is also the only protoss to ever reach three GSL finals. He won it all at the IEM Season VI Championships.
Currently he is the #2 earner of all starcraft 2 pros sitting at $367,213 in winnings just being passed by MVP this year.
6. StarTale Life
The first (and only) zerg to make my top ten Starcraft 2 influences is StarTale's Lee "Life" Seung Hyun, a zerg pro from South Korea. Sure DongRaeGu has earned more in winnings. Sure FruitDealer has won when the world thought a zerg couldn't. But Life has set the scene on fire, being the third youngest SC2 player ever to play a televised match at the age of 15.
On October 20, 2012, StarTale Life fought entirely through the GSL tournament and got a chance to beat MVP, the best player in the world, at the Finals. Still only 15 years old, he would become the youngest player ever to win a major SC2 tournament. And he did, bringing in $43,000 for that victory alone.
In November 2012, he went to his first even abroad to compete at MLG Dallas. He was able to come back to win against Flash, a broodwar legend, and Leenock to win the MLG event.
In 2013 after winning the Iron Squid - Ch. II tournament against heroes such as MarineKing, and DongRaeGu, he attended the MLG Winter Championship. Once again in a place where zerg was seen as the underdog, Life was able to show the world that zerg could win again, defeating players such as Flash, becoming the first back to back MLG champion.
You can't honor the present without honoring the past. Starcraft 1 has been the staple of E-sports in Korea for the last decade only recently has Starcraft 2 edged it out in popularity. The man leading the merciless slaughter was none other KT Rolster's Flash.
In Starcraft 1 he had a 70+% winrate vs every race, impeccable macro, held the longest reign as the #1 ranked player on the KeSPA Rankings, has the highest ELO rating of all time, and the highest earnings in Starcraft 1 netting him a whopping $407,228.05.
Flash has made the switch to SC2 but still needs practice. Nonetheless he did make it to the MLG finals against Life as previously mentioned. I'm sure his reign isn't over.
8. Marine King Prime
Lee "MarineKing" Jung Hoon of team Prime, aka MKP, will always be one of my all time favorites. He has his own unique play-style and made it work with some of the most exciting micro matches imaginable. There's nothing quite like intensity displayed of his marine marches on an opponent. He pulls off the sickest splits you have ever seen.
Born in South Korea his biggest achievement has been pulling off two MLG victories back to back.
He single-handedly popularized his two barracks style when he defeated player after player at the second GSL using marine rushes, performing baneling splits, and circling his victims with marine control.
In 2010 he was the top ranked player of Korea listed under the name Baskin Robbins, his alleged smurf account.
He's played in several premium tournaments but usually ended up knocked out at the finals to someone like MVP. Overall his current winnings come to $186,425.
Won "PartinG" Lee Sak is a Protoss player from South Korea. He has devised a lot of fast 3 base styles we see today.
PartinG's greatest success was his win at the 2012 Battle.net World Championship earning him $100,000 in a single tournament. Another notable achievement was taking first in the World Cyber Games of 2012. He has also all-killed team EG, Incredible Miracle, and Prime to cement himself as a Protoss badass.
His sc2 earnings to date place him in the top ten with $186,109 in winnings.
Lee "INnoVation" Shin Hyung of STX SouL is new to my radar. We saw him at the Heart of the Swarm MLG event and he came out swinging, 3-0ing several strong players like HuK, Leenock, and Rain. Only Flash himself was able to stop him, where he had to face MC for a third place finish. He was able to do just that in a 2-1 victory.
Blizzards new tournament structure has three major tournaments WCS Korea, WCS Europe, and WCS America. At the end those who score the most points play in a Championship WCS. You can watch these games at blizzard's website wcs.battle.net. As a side note I'm very impressed with the production of WCS, and looks like it might be my favorite one to watch going forward.
Innovation's success in Korea's GSL allowed him to play in WCS Korea. He was able to defeat Life, Flash, Symbol, and defending GSL champ Roro to get to the finals where he lost in bitter defeat against Soulkey.
Placing 2nd in WCS Korea allowed him to play in the WCS Championship. He was able to fight his way through the round of 8 where he 3-0ed aLive. Advancing to the semifinals he had to face MVP himself where he eeked out victory 3-2. In the other semifinals Soulkey (who ended Innovation's chances at victory just a tournament ago) just barely lost against sOs 3-2. Innovation then proceeded to run over sOs 4-0 to secure a $40,000 1st place prize.
He will be someone to keep an eye on in the upcoming tournaments.
If you want to read more you can check out my post about my favorite SC2 Streamers.
Who do your favorite person in the Starcraft 2 scene? Let me know in the comments below.