The first major Age of Empires IV tournament ended with the grand prize being awarded to a veteran of the Age of Empires esports scene. A longstanding champion of Age of Empires II, Ørjan “TheViper” Larsen succeeded in winning the top prize of $7,000 in the first “S-tier” event organised with its sequel, which was released at the end of October 2021.
The new entry in the franchise has attracted competitors from a range of different game communities. The $20,000 Genesis competition, hosted by Elite Gaming Channel between 13-14 November, featured players prominent in other Age of Empires titles, as well as Warcraft and Starcraft. However it was TheViper, often considered the best AoE2 player of all time, that won the grand prize.
The Norwegian player defeated the Greek Age of Mythology player Themistoklis “TheMista” Bonidis in the final. He previously scored wins against the British Age of Empires Online player RecoN and Pedro “LucifroN” Durán, a Spanish former professional Warcraft III and Starcraft II player. TheViper won despite a persistent wrist injury.
512 players participated in the open qualifier of the Genesis tournament, which ended with eight players continuing to the main event. They included well known Age of Empires II players Hera and Kasva as well as LucifroN’s younger brother Juan “VortiX” Durán.
The tournament’s rules meant that each player could not use a civilization that they had previously won with in the same series. This meant that players could not anchor themselves to a particular favoured civ. The deciding match of the series between TheViper and TheMista had them playing as the Abbasid Dynasty and the French.
TheViper’s achievement in the tournament establishes his status in Age of Empires IV against a host of new challengers. Meanwhile he remains the preeminent Age of Empires II player, recently achieving victory in the History Hit Open.