NAVI Success Story
NaVi are among the most famous and respected teams in the esports world. They specialize in playing Dota 2, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and other computer games. Founded in Ukraine in 2009, the team, known as Natus Vincere, has become synonymous with success in world tournaments and for their high standard of play.
One of the team’s most significant achievements when it comes to CS:GO is certainly the fact they have participated in all 19 major tournaments. No other organization has managed the same. Their closest challengers are fnatic on 16 tournaments and Ninjas in Pajamas on 15. Counter Strike 2 is coming out in the summer of 2023, so Natus Vincere will forever have their place in history as the only team to participate in all CS:GO majors.
Let’s take a look at the brightest and most disastrous moments for the CS:GO team in these 19 prestigious tournaments.
NaVi’s Bumpy Start in CS:GO Majors
Things didn’t go smoothly for the “yellow and blacks” at first. At their first major, DreamHack Winter 2013, NaVi finished in a humiliating last place. They lost 9-16 in the group to fnatic, and then 13-16 to LGB. Most likely, this was due to the fact that the “oldies” still hadn’t switched from CS 1.6 to CS:GO, which was new for them, while young seized and kibaken were not fully matured yet.
NaVi’s History of Being Second in CS:GO Majors
After several lineup changes and a lot of hard work, the “born to win” performed brilliantly at DreamHack Open Cluj-Napoca 2015. In the playoffs, in a tense struggle, they beat the Brazilians from Luminosity 16-14; 16-13, and then trampled the Swedish NiP 16-3; 16-6. The French Team EnVyUs were waiting for them in the grand final. The first map, de_train, saw an incredibly tough fight, and the yellow and blacks lost 14-16. And then, on the de_cobblestone map, it all went wrong for the team. It ended 16-5, and the French were crowned the champions. There was talk in the community about the team’s mental health issues.
By the middle of 2016, NaVi were one of the most stable teams in the world. In April, the “born to win” made it to the finals of the Major, and then they had a great few months, often playing in finals. But the team kept taking second place, and it was the mental factor that was dragging them down.
NaVi remove Zeus from the lineup
In August 2016, tired of getting so many silver medals in tournaments, the team decided to remove captain Danil Zeus Teslenko from their lineup. His place was taken by Alexander s1mple Kostylev.
The team’s results went downhill. At ELEAGUE Major Atlanta 2017, NaVi finished in 5th-8th place, losing 1:2 on maps to Astralis in the quarterfinals.
Their worst performance came at PGL Major Kraków 2017. The team could only manage 9th-12th place, failed to make the playoffs and lost their Legends status.
A Journey through Lineup Changes in Top-Level Esports
After the Kraków disaster, the team realized they couldn’t build a champion squad without a strong leader. And they brought Zeus back. The legendary captain once again led the team into the final of a major. This time at FACEIT Major: London 2018. The team looked unstoppable. They smashed BIG 16-2; 16-6, and had no trouble beating mibr 16-10; 16-5. In the grand final, they met Astralis, who were at the peak of their form. Despite all the efforts of Zeus and the team, they stumbled one step away from the champion title for a third time. The Danish team managed to win 6-16; 9-16.
And the latest significant tournament for the team was PGL Major Stockholm 2021. In the grand final, they faced the G2 Esports team. It was a truly spectacular match. Both teams showed genuine professionalism and skill. But in the end, the team managed to win with a score of 2:0. After losing three grand finals, they take the championship title. They did not concede a single map in the entire tournament!
It is impossible not to mention the players who were on top form throughout the tournament. Especially worth mentioning is Alexander s1mple Kostylev, who was recognized as the best player of the tournament. He showed real skill and was able to take his team all the way.
Ahead of us is the final major for this version of Counter Strike: BLAST.tv Paris Major 2023. The team have successfully qualified. No one knows who will win the cup at the last major in history, but they are going in as the favorites. This is the result of many years of work and training. The team haven’t rested on their laurels: they continue to work on their skills. And we can be sure that they will again delight us with their wins more than once in the future.