On Monday, February first, Firebat put out a tweet that simply read: “Hey everyone. This is my new twitter as I am no longer part of Archon.” This immediately kicked up a wave of rumours trying to figure out what happened, which Firebat was quick to answer that he was not kicked, he did indeed leave of his own accord. One fan asked “still not paying?” in regards to rumours that Archon hadn’t been paying their employees or prize winnings. The rumour is entirely unfounded and to all accounts Archon has been paying everything they commit to, but Firebat liked the comment without responding.
He continued to stream in the meantime, and every time he was asked he refused to comment on the situation, citing Archon’s short statement that they had parted ways, saying that he didn’t want to cause any drama and that their statement would have to do, as unsubstantial as it was. Despite his lack of comments, many rumours were circulating blaming Archon for poor employee conditions.
The next day, Amaz and Backspace, the co-owners of team Archon, put out a video explaining the Firebat situation. The video starts off by explaining that while they may not have paid the prize winners immediately, they did pay them within the three month window that they stipulated, and at no time have they held back employee payments. The video then devolved into a completely unprofessional tirade against Firebat himself, as an individual. They had some valid points such as that Firebat allegedly bought a dog and then forced his teammates to look after it, but these facts were interspersed with insults of character, such as Backspace stating that “Firebat’s room smelled like pure urine”. The video ended with a very ironic statement from Amaz that Firebat “needs to mature”.
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Firebat decided not to reply with any insults, and put out his own statement which was far more professional and stated that he “left Archon because [he] was unhappy with circumstances regarding the team, specifically regarding payments”. He finished off by wishing Archon “the best of luck in the future”.
Regardless who is to blame or who handled the situation better, this is a devastating blow to Archon. They lost both Xixo and PurpleDrank back in August, and now they have lost Firebat without gaining any particularly strong members in the meantime. Firebat alone accounted for six of the team’s ten tournament finishes, and a vast majority of the prize winnings the team had earned. Without him team Archon will be severely hurting for strong members.
In the Red Bull Team Brawl happening later this week, Firebat was originally scheduled to play on team Archon, but he has since been replaced on their roster by Amnesiacsc. However, Firebat will still be playing, as Reynad, founder of and player for team Tempo Storm, has offered Firebat his own spot on his team. This certainly hints towards a potential partnership between Firebat and Tempo Storm down the road.
Firebat becoming a free agent is particularly important in the professional scene because, as Reynad stated, Firebat is the best free agent in a long time. Firebat won Blizzcon 2014, and he has had very impressive tournament finishes ever since then. On February first, Firebat’s mother tweeted out: “Bidding war to get Firebat signed. C9 vs. TempoStorm vs. Liquid vs. Na’Vi vs. Celestial”.
Certainly keep an eye out for Firebat’s future team, but also watch Archon, as they will need to sign some new players soon or fade into oblivion with a very sub-par roster compared to the other professional teams on the scene at the moment.