[UPDATE 17/12/2021] The W3NL organizers, after conducting internal talks, have decided to reconsider their decision to ban KoLoss from W3NL and – provided that we are given sufficient information about team Turkey’s players – to reinstate his rights to be manager.
The information mentioned being:
- All three replays for every player in the lineup
- An active W3Champions account with a bare minimum of playing history
- The « Orc brain » tool (from Warcraft3.info) not finding any smurfs during analysis of these replays.
We trust that KoLoss, his team, and all the other participating nations, will behave in a respectful and kind manner, and make sure that this competition remains a celebration of Warcraft. Please note that from now on, and in the spirit of keeping the spotlight focused on the tournament itself and not any unproductive hearsay, every mention of this last recent decision, past decision, and the events they might be concerning, will be deleted, with a warning.
Reminder of the rules: « Every participant is required to maintain an adequate level of respect and friendliness with other players and the admins. Insults and unfair or disrespectful behaviour towards the admins or other players will not be tolerated. »
[UPDATE 30/10/2020] ToRReNte case is cleared of charges since our investigation didn’t provide confirmation with a 100% evidence that Taner is him. Although we can confirm that Taner was an alias and Turkey, MrGannicus and KoLoss remain banned.
We express our sincere apologies to ToRReNte for the prejudice.
MrGannicus signed up together with a representative team of Turkey during the sign-up period for the league. The players on the team at that time were Amenthis (aka Ibrahimovic), Koloss (CaN), and Rayid.
However, there were concerns regarding the eligibility of a number of these players as previous participations in leagues and on W3Champions ladder showed that they were playing from Germany or under German flag. Albeit the vehement insistence of MrGannicus that it was not the case, the organizers of the league checked with Rayid, and he confirmed he didn’t have Turkish citizenship. Thus, Rayid was not allowed to represent the team. No confirming evidence was shown for CaN and for Ibrahimovic.
MrGannicus showed a passport copy to one of the organizers as evidence (but no comparison between his face and the face on the passport photo). However, the organizers took the decision to allow the team to represent Turkey.
On September 24th, the team of Turkey added a player nicknamed Taner to their squad. It is important to note that this coincided with another event related to W3NL. Three days earlier, on September 21st, Spain (prospective line-up Scars, ToRReNte, VortiX, HoBBiT) were denied participation as the deadline for signing up had expired on 13 September. Thus, the players Scars, ToRReNte, VortiX, and HoBBiT were not allowed to participate in the league.
Additionally, it is important to note that nobody had ever heard of Taner, and the 3 replays that were provided by the team of Turkey as reference for his game style, were replays from Battle.net ladder with a total length of 16 minutes.
On September 27th, the team of Turkey played their first league match – versus the team of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Taner played in both the solo match (Game 1 – Game 2 – Game 3), and in the 2v2 match (Game 1 – Game 2) together with CaN. The 2v2 team of Turkey won in a relatively straightforward fashion the 2v2 match.
In the solo match, in the first game, Taner made moves inconsistent with the level of play he displayed in his subsequent games in the tournament, and he quit the game a little before the 9th minute of the game. The next two games ended in decisive victories for him versus billybih (no W3.info Elo rating, 1750 MMR W3Champions). Thus, nobody paid any special attention to the result.
On October 3rd, the team of Turkey played their second league match – versus the team of Bulgaria. This time Taner faced Lubber (1932 W3.info Elo rating, 2200 MMR W3Champions Grand Master). In the first game, Taner won in a very decisive fashion. The second game was even, but Taner still managed to win, after more than 30 minutes of play. The skill level displayed by Taner in these games could be estimated at about 2,100+ MMR W3Champions level.
During the matches, Taner was not online on Discord. CaN facilitated the communication between Taner and the opponent teams (for instance regarding vetoes).
It’s important to note that during the match, Turkey gets an official warning for insults and Unpausing during their 2v2.
Investigation – Part 1
As nobody knew the history of the player Taner, an investigation was launched in order to understand more about his identity. The team of Turkey, and in particular their Manager – MrGannicus, and the facilitator of the communication with Taner – CaN, were questioned. MrGannicus defered to CaN for additional information. The most important bits of information CaN provided were:
- Taner was his friend from Turkey, not a famous player.
- Taner hadn’t played W3Champions, he practiced custom games recently to prepare for the match. This was confirmed with Sheik and Cement. The training games happened on October 2nd.
- Overall CaN was extremely defensive and asked repeatedly why the organizers were interested specifically in Taner.
The replays from the custom games versus Sheik and Cement were provided to the organizers by CaN. No information about the player Taner, and no replays of his, prior to the date September 23rd, were provided to the organizers. His identity or history prior to his joining to the team of Turkey remained and still remain completely unknown.
Additionally, a past offense of MrGannicus where he was caught managing a team that used aliasing in another league, made the case for a thorough investigation even stronger. That offense happened during W3RL Season 1, and involved KraV.
An investigation was launched in order to analyze the replays of Taner. The first thing that was spotted immediately was that an attempt at faking key binds was made. Additional control groups were set towards the end of each game, once the game was already won. These were control groups 6, 7, 8, 9, and 0. These control groups were never used throughout the games. Additionally, certain actions were purposefully doubled, in quick succession, in order to inflate the player’s APM.
Finally, the following screenshots are showing a conversation between MrGannicus – Turkey manager – and someone who wants to stay anonymous. The images speak for themselves.
Based on all of the evidence above, it was established with certainty beyond a reasonable doubt that the player Taner was a smurf account that was trying to conceal their identity.
Investigation – Part 2
The second part of the investigation involved filtering out the hotkey spam and comparing the normal (non-spam) hotkeys of Taner with other players that fit the profile (approximately 2,050 to 2,200 MMR level of play with Night Elf, or potentially relevant players who may have off-raced with Night Elf). These players included:
- JohnnyCage (offrace elf)
- Cash (offrace elf)
- Blade (offrace elf)
- KraV (offrace elf)
The only player whose hotkeys were very similar to the ones of Taner, was ToRReNtE. However, a number of adjustments had been made:
- The aforementioned control group spam, and double-command APM inflation spam;
- Control groups were remapped with 2 moving to 3, and vice versa.
MrGannicus has been caught having his hotkeys remapped in a similar fashion in order to not be associated with his previous account – iMB (with which he had been banned from W3RL).
The conclusion reached by an independent multinational team of replay analysts was that the probability was very high that Taner was in fact ToRReNte, based on the hotkeys. A significant number of replays of ToRReNtE versus Undead players were analyzed in order to come to that conclusion. To this, the circumstantial evidence that the team of Spain was denied participation just 2 days before the joining of Taner to Turkey is added.
Albeit all of this, we had a conversation with ToRReNtE and he was shocked and frustrated by the accusations. He was very responsive and helpful when asked for information, and was insistent that the case should be resolved and the actual smurfer should be discovered by all means. A lot of circumstantial evidence points to ToRReNtE, but we will certainly continue to investigate the matter further and to look for other potential culprits. At present, we will freeze our decision on the permanent ban of ToRReNtE from the event until further evidence is uncovered..
Additional post factum evidence that ToRReNtE was the person related to Turkey, was the fact that Taner – a brand-new account, joined the Discord server of W3NL after the announcement of the ban, and asked that we invite « ToRReNte#3378 » (the actual correct Discord account of ToRReNtE) to join the server, before removing the # information from his message. As there is no way for a brand-new account to obtain the contacts of another user, unless they share a server, this was a clear evidence that this particular Taner was fake, and that this particular Taner knew ToRReNtE.
Last but not least, it is important to note that the « Taner » who joined the Discord server post factum, was a different account from the one who joined for a brief period of time on October 3rd, before the match of Turkey with Bulgaria.
-The W3NL Organization Team