It wasn't a fluke: Tempest have triumphed over MVP Black in a 3-2 series at the Summer Global Championship to become the new world champions.
For Tempest, the win is not only the culmination of a journey, but vindication that their 4-0 win over MVP Black in the Superleague 2016 S2 finals was not an accident. Brothers Jae Hun "Lockdown" Jin and Gyeong Hwan "Hide" Jin were both former members of MVP — the former on Black, and the latter on Sky — and with this win, Lockdown's risky decision to leave the organization to play with his brother appears to have been vindicated.
The final day of Heroes action at DreamHack Summer saw some incredible sets between the Top 4 teams, with the game played at its highest level yet. The Grand Finals series was the best of all, with the two Korean teams constantly maneuvering around their opponents' picks and tendencies in their attempts to bring home the $150,000 first-place prize.
The last Western triumph
MVP Black earned their spot in the final with a 3-1 semifinal win over mYinsanity. The series got off to a surprising start, with mYi drafting a composition around Artanis and Lt. Morales, designed to exploit Medivac to quickly eliminate keeps and even threaten core. The game ended in a base race, but MVP Black rotated quickly enough to respond, eliminating mYi's core first to end the game. The strategy may have prevailed on some other maps, but seemed like a difficult fit for Sky Temple, due to the value of the objectives.
Game 2 saw mYi strike back on Infernal Shrines with a double-specialist composition plus Stitches. Markus "Blumbi" Hanke landed some incredible hooks, including one that interrupted a fleeing Falstad's attempt to fly away.
mYinsanity's victory seemed like it could swing the momentum of the series, but MVP quickly put an end to that. Game 3 on Towers of Doom saw mYi's Vikings composition lose an early fort and fall too far behind. Then, after a technical issue caused a long delay and a remake, Game 4 on Battlefield of Eternity was a similarly dominant win for MVP, as mYi tried a Muradin/Tyrande composition that could not sustain them through the enemy's aggression.
China's final star
eStar Gaming had to face Tempest in order to move on, but ultimately fell 3-1 to MVP.
The dive comp the Chinese team fielded in Game 1 of their series saw the divers become the divees, as Tempest unleashed Kerrigan. In the hands of Ju Dam "Dami" Park, the Queen of Blades was everywhere, catching eStar out of position and landing huge combos.
eStar fought back in Game 2, taking over with Tychus, Xul and E.T.C. Facing a Muradin and Chen frontline from MVP, Tychus shredded the opposition.
Game 3 on Cursed Hollow saw Tempest win with a Muradin, Sonya and Tyrael frontline. Sanctification in particular came through in a big way for Tempest, allowing Sonya to go berserk and even negating a Mosh Pit. A crazy all-in from Tempest proved to be enough to seal the deal.
The final map was the seldom-seen Towers of Doom. Tempest fell behind very early, and the map seemed destined to go over to eStar, but the Koreans fought back with the power of Kael'thas, winning late-game teamfights and forcing eStar into the death spiral of fort captures and pick-offs that's become so common on that map.
With both Korean teams in the Grand Finals, it was time for MVP to earn their revenge against the roster that swept them 4-0 in the Superleague 2016 S2 finals. However, their aspirations were dashed by two brothers and the team they assembled to challenge the reigning world champions.
Game one on Battlefield of Eternity saw Tempest get out to a 1-0 lead. Tae Jun "merryday" Yi played Lt. Morales, but was often isolated by Tempest's Muradin/Sonya frontline. After trading forts early, Tempest eventually managed a stong teamfight under MVP's top keep and pushed to core for the win.
Infernal Shrines was the battleground for Game 2, and Dami again reprised his role as Kerrigan. Even though Dami still had some very strong plays, a late game teamfight was completely sealed up by the biggest Mosh Pit of the tournament, courtesy of MVP's Ji Hoon "Sign" Yoo.
Cursed Hollow played host to Game 3, and Tracer made an appearance in the hands of Won Ho "KyoCha" Jeong. MVP's catch-all flex player is sometimes considered to be the roster's weakest member, but he put on a show as he darted in and out of the fray, becoming both an annoyance and a legitimate threat to Tempest.
Game 4 on Dragon Shire was a back-and-forth nail-biter that approached the 25-minute mark and featured the best teamfight of the tournament. If you watch only one Heroes game from DreamHack Summer, make it this one. Several late-game Dragon Knights went to both teams, but neither was able to seal the deal until a massive brawl erupted in the bottom lane and Tempest rode out of the smoking crater that resulted.
No map could be more fitting for Game 5 between these two great teamfighting squads than Towers of Doom. Dami was given all the tools he needed to absolutely dominate MVP on his Greymane, getting Wizened Duelist stacks to the point where Sign's Muradin was as easy to rip apart as a Tyrande. The game was a fitting culmination to what was definitely the best series of competitive Heroes of the Storm that we have seen so far.
Josh Bury is a news editor for theScore esports. You can follow him on Twitter.