Okay, more like random guesses and shots in the dark. Historically I have averaged a whopping 57.8% accuracy for the first week. So, let's just take these predictions with a grain of salt.
Eve Forums "predictions" thread -> HERE
Qualifying round 1 - Day 1 - 30th June (All times in UTC)
15:00 Agony Empire vs. Exiled Ones - Really a tough choice here, Agony Empire has been stepping up it's game in Nullsec recently, and showing some signs of serious improvement, despite being a training school. A lesser man wouldn't be familiar with Exiled Ones, but they are a smallish wormhole alliance. Unfortunately for them, I think the skill to win this matchup lies in the hands of Agony empire.
15:20 SOLAR FLEET vs. Dead Terrorists - Solar Fleet has made several appearances in previous Alliance tournaments, and made it into the Final day last year, they have always been successful in the qualifying rounds. Dead Terrorists made it deep into AT8, but were not chosen to participate in AT9. Looking at just history of the two teams, it is a fairly even matchup. Both have been here before, but SOLAR has the advantage with experience in the five man setups from AT9. A very different game than AT8. For that and the simple pool of pilots that SOLAR can pull from, compared to the 29 members of Dead Terrorists...
15:40 Lone Star Partners vs. Raiden. - After daring to give me the raspberry, Lone Star has a special place in my heart, and a tingly spot on my stomach. This corp hails from unknown space as well, but has a lot of balls, their killboards reflecting their desire to get in fights no matter where their exits. This is their first AT, so that will play against their chances, as will their rough first matchup vs Raiden. Raiden[dot] was in AT9, making it to the group stages before being defeated and pushed out the last day of group. However their experience and pilot pool will make for a tough matchup against alliance tourney newcomers like Lone Star Partners, and should garner their victory here.
16:00 The Kadeshi vs. The Space P0lice - The Kadeshi, sov holders in and around Catch, Feythabolis, Omist and Tenerifis boast a stronger pvp wing than they are given credit for, currently deployed to Delve. I wonder how much time the offensive has taken away from practicing because they face off against another AT veteran, The Space P0lice. The Space P0lice had a rough time in the AT last year, losing in the qualifying stages twice, and unable to make the group stages. This is a closer match than on paper, and I think though the Space P0lice will make a strong showing, The Kadeshi have a history of making it deep into the the AT.
16:20 Hun Reloaded vs. Perihelion Alliance - Now this is a matchup I am looking forward to. HUN exploded out of obscurity in AT4, winning the whole thing, while Perihelion has been making hell for their opponents in the past two AT's, including a win in the qualifiers that sealed Rote out of the group stages last year. In fact they didn't lose a single match all AT9 until the final day, losing to Darkside. The true runners up to Hydra/Outbreak in AT9. Will we see a resurgent HUN, aiming for their second crown? Or will the story be Perihelion stepping off to another good start?
16:40 Babylon 5.. vs. Nulli Secunda - Babylon squeaked through the qualifiers last year, with one loss and one victory, making it into the group stages before being defeated twice more to lock them out of the final day. Nulli on the other hand has some serious talent on their side, and no I am not talking about singing talent, in fact Nulli is a competent sov holding alliance, also out fighting in the Delve war, with some solid AT9 experience making it to the group stages as well, before facing some rough competition. In a matchup of nearly-there's, whos the winner? Maybe the song has something to do with it.
17:00 Noir Mercenary Group vs. Elysian Empire - Noir did not participate in AT9, but were in AT8, despite not making it through to the finals, their matches were close, but not as decisive as they prefer. Noir makes a living as Mercenaries and now more than ever, is a chance to show their skill in a stand up fight. The Elysian Empire are relative unknowns in comparison. But that's not to say they aren't ready for a challenge. As has been said before, living in a WH is not an easy life. The Empire is a strong force in WH space, and looks to highlight their skills against all comers in ATX. I see a close match here, and find it really tough to call.
17:20 RED.OVERLORD vs. R.E.V.O.L.U.T.I.O.N. - After RED made it to the finals in AT8, they did not compete in AT9, but get their chance again in ATX. Sov holders out in a huge swath of space in the South. Their competitors are an interesting matchup, small to their large, but as with any matchup never quite certain. R.E.V.O.L.U.T.I.O.N. are a set of pirates that seem to operate out of the lowsec in Caldari space. As with all pirates in the AT they stand just as good a chance in this match as any one else, as long as they have put the time in. Another good match, but one I think that RED might take in the end.
-- Intermission --
18:20 Fearless. vs. Sleeper Social Club - Neither have been in the AT over the last two years, so they start off with a level playing field in terms of experience. Fearless. is a Merc corp that operates their PvP wing out of lowsec to keep themselves sharp. They face off against the SSC, another Wormhole alliance, who have been looking forward to getting into the Alliance tournament. Both sides appear to be evenly matched and it will come down to the preparation, intel and some parts luck to determine the winner. Since SSC responded to my earlier post, I will go with them.
18:40 Darkside. vs. RAZOR Alliance - A regular pair of Veterans face off here, Darkside operates further south, than RAZOR does, in Sov, but both are strong pvp entities. Darkside has a strong history in the AT, making it to the final round last year, before losing to eventual champions Hydra/Outbreak in a very close match. RAZOR on the other hand fought their way through the qualifying stages of AT9 and made it just as far as Darkside, before being eliminate by the other half of the Hydra/Outbreak team. With Hydra and Outbreak out this year, is this a 6 v 6 of what the final would have looked like last year? I THINK SO!!! Darkside. ftw!
19:00 Get Off My Lawn vs. RvB - Old Syndicate residents, LAWN face off against highsec foreverwar partners Red Vs Blue. Red and Blue have a ton of PvP experience, but I wonder how much of a chance they had to get critical mass from their membership to flood the test server with training fights. LAWN showed some deft moves in AT9, getting into the group rounds before being swept there, going 0-3. Blue and Red (bestfed) participated in AT9, but Blue was eliminated in the qualifiers while Red made it into the group stages, going 1-2 and missing out on the finals by mere points. This is a tough choice for me here, But I will have to go with the corp/alliance I have been in before.
19:20 WHY so Seri0Us vs. Against ALL Authorities - WHY so Seri0Us owns their own small chunk of Sov, close to the massive Sov holdings of -AAA- Both sides are active pvpers, but who will show up with the better setup? They look to be blue to each-other in space, the perfect time to settle some of those nasty blue on blue desires. I will side with the underdog here, at the risk of being wrong.
19:40 Exodus vs. Bruderschaft der Pilger - Exodus is a pvp alliance in the curse region, and are quite active, and good. Rote had the luck to practice some 12v12 setups against these guys and they rocked our world. Bruderschaft is a part wormhole alliance and part nullsec alliance, made up of several corps that band together when they are needed but otherwise operate in either Curse, or WH independently. If there ever was the AT battle for Curse, this would be it.
20:00 Goonswarm Federation vs. BricK sQuAD. - Goons, well.. Goons, they didnt make it into group stages in AT9, but fought some close matches none the less. In AT8 they showed moment of brilliance, but were unable to capitalize. This year seems to be the year of the Goons, wouldn't it be interesting to see them sweep the table and win the AT as well? BricK sQuAD. on the other hand, favored the triple Tengu setup last year, but it served them well, giving them a solid win in the first round and then a major loss in the second round. If Eve is any indication, I expect Oracles from them. My money is still on BricK after they beat up on test in the opening round last year.
20:20 Out of Sight vs. Pure Madness - OoS looks like everyone will underestimate them, that's going to be costly, they are doing a good job at PvP but I haven't seen them on the test server, while I have seen Pure Madness on there at all hours. Both have fought in Syndicate on and off, so I look forward to this match, though I think it will be close. I am guessing Pure Madness
20:40 The Veyr Collective vs. Northern Coalition. - I wish I knew more about The Veyr collective. It looks like the spend some time flying with Matari Exodus, but who knows how much of that good can rub off. To make matters worse, they get a brutal first round matchup with NC. Northern Coalition[dot] was in AT9 but unable to make it into the group stages despite going 1-1, with a fairly good win over The Space P0lice. Unfortunately, their first matchup didn't yield them enough points to make it into the next round.
End of Day one.
*Whew!* -Look, this is a shitload of work to write all this crap down so now we go to abbreviated version for Day 2 of the qulifiers! Sorry if I get some of my info wrong, or short-change your alliance -
Qualifying round 1 - Day 2 - 1st July (All times in UTC)
15:00 Dark Taboo vs. Alpha Volley Union - Nobody here responded to my questioneer. Bastards. That aside, Dark Taboo operates out of what looks like WH's and somewhere in or close to badsville. Something to the tune of this killmail... Wow that's bad. AVU It doesn't even matter, if you can't beat people that do that to their own members. Go home.
15:20 Manifest Destiny. vs. Verge of Collapse - Manifest Destiny are mostly small gang, lowsec Pvpers it seems like, running gangs in Amarr lowsec and making life hell for people down there. Verge of Collapse is telling anyone who will listen that they are bad. So that usually indicates the opposite. I am going to go out on a limb here and say Verge of Collapse is going to win this matchup.
15:40 Shadow Cartel vs. Tribal Conclave - Shadow Cartel is perhaps best known as one of the larger and more successful pirate alliances in New Eden at the moment. They also provide a home for such notorious villians as Nassh and Helicity Boson. They are a roaming pvp alliance at heart, operating out of the Gallente Militia zones, fighting all takers. Tribal Conclave on the other hand are virtual unknowns, who operate out in Scalding Path with Imperial Legion and friends against Gypsy band (whom I hope they will fight later on). My heart is always with the pirates. Good luck Shadow Cartel.
16:00 Dystopia Alliance vs. Pandemic Legion - Second to top most important match of the first weekend. Dystopia Alliance has all the members of the GHSC, in addition so such noteables as Tyrrax Thorrk and Istavaan S. Pandemic Legion is looking to step back up and claim their fourth AT title giving them the most in AT history to date (they are currently tied with BoB with three. It will be a close match where intel and meta-gaming will be more important than fittings and pilot skill.
16:20 Heretic Nation vs. Romanian Legion - Heretic Nation fly around "mother" ammamake, defending her from all who would rape and pillage her. No seriously. Active PvPers in that region, you can always trust that they are never too far from the first asteroid belt, and always in force. Having said that Romanian Legion are not a force to be forgotten. I think Heretic Nation takes this one in a close match.
16:40 Ev0ke vs. Wormhole Holders - Ev0ke are a powerful and last I looked, competent PvP Alliance who flies out in Geminate and Vale of the Silent, owning a considerable amount of space up there. The Wormhole Holders are a developing WH alliance looking for that elusive good fight and a chance to spread their name and influence, not to mention hopefully attract new pvpers to their ranks by performing well in the AT. Unfortunately for them, it will be an uphill battle vs Ev0ke. But I wish them luck.
17:00 The R0NIN vs. Dirt Nap Squad - The R0NIN are small gang guys who hang out in Syndicate, killing everything that comes in their path. Effective gang fighters, they need to step up their tactics a notch to be able to compete in the Alliance Tournament. I say that mostly tongue in cheek because last year the R0NIN made it all the way to the group stages before facing a gauntlet of skilled opponents, losing 2 of 3 fights and not making it into the finals. DNS, I didn't think you could BOBS bridge into the AT? Dirt Nap Squad is arguably most famous for it's proclivity towards dropping... everything... on everyone. At any chance they get. DNS Hasn't been in the AT in a few years, but I still expect good things. Close match here, but I am going to go with R0NIN.
17:20 Gypsy Band vs. Curatores Veritatis Alliance - Gypsy Band is a Curse based, small gang, vs large alliance PvP alliance. As I have said before and no doubt will say again, Alliances based in NPC space tend to do well vs CVA, I don't know why this is, but it stands pretty true. Okay Okay, CVA did make it to the Final day in AT8 and lost to the exact same people Rote lost to. I'll give them some respect. But not much.
-- Intermission --
18:20 Fatal Ascension vs. Kill it with fire - I think a forum post said it all accurately, Kill FA with fire. FA just completed a stint in Syndicate, bring joyous kills to the masses. Though I do tip my hat to them for taking some of the fights they got in. Kill it with fire on the other hand, is another Wormhole alliance, friends with the SSC, but self sufficient WH pvpers with a strong background in small gangs. This usually lends itself well to the atmosphere of the AT, and it will be interesting to see if FA had the time to practice with all their redeployments.
18:40 Rote Kapelle vs PERCUSSIVE PIZZA TIME DIPLOMACY - Refuse to comment on Rote, but PERCUSSIVE also known by their former name Percussive Diplomacy are no laughing matter despite their funny name. I'm not sure if it is a gambit to make people underestimate them or just searching for a laugh, but these Gallente milita pilots do well both in the war and out of it.
19:00 Capital Punishment. Vs. Suddenly Spaceships - I'll be the first to admit that there is some bad blood between Capital Punishment and Rote Kapelle. To be honest though, TEXN and friends are a formidable force even if we didn't get along with them in the long run. They will be facing a tough challenge against eve celebrity led Suddenly Spaceships. Seldarine is one of the premier pilots in eve if you have never heard of him before, and this latest alliance incarnation could be one of the toughest. Stationed out in Curse, Suddenly Spaceships focus on 5-15 man gangs and roaming combat. They are long-time vets of the AT, having participated in the last 8. Will this be the year they step up and deliver a championship?
19:20 Black Legion. vs. Mildly Intoxicated - [MEN.] How I love your ticker, and your work. You do gods work out there, especially in your Muninn fleets. Okay maybe those are a little last-year, but I still lub ya! Black Legion[dot] hold sov in one system in Vale of the Silent, but have been harassing people since inception. Solid pvpers they have been operating Alpha fleets since before it was cool. Never afraid to "punch up" these are a team to watch this year. Mildly Intoxicated is not an alliance I am as familiar with, but I do know of ookke though I am not sure he is good enough to carry the rest of the team past the favorites in this match. In a split decision amongst my personalities, I chose Black Legion as well.
19:40 The Forth District vs. The Gorgon Empire - 4th District is a Providence based alliance, and quite good at what they do from all appearances. That being small to mid sized PvP, and holding a small amount of Sov. They face off against The Gorgon Empire, a Curse based, NPC null alliance interested in showing off their PvP skill and knowledge by racking up some wins in ATX. It will be a tough fight, as both sides are looking to prove themselves. In the end, the Curse region has probably sharpened The Gorgons to a keener edge.
20:00 No Holes Barred vs. Team Liquid - No Holes barred is a WH Alliance, looking to make a name for itself, vs a team that already has a name for itself, in another game. Team Liquid is a Starcraft clan, and a very successful one. I think it was best said that their fits will have been EFTed to death. Now it's just the execution that could mess it all up.
20:20 Choke Point vs. Fluffeh Bunneh Murder Squad - Chokepoint is another successful Northern Alliance, PvPing in and around some of the big entities around Geminate and roaming all across eve at times. They face off against some Fluffeh Bunnies, terrors of WH space, who want to mislead everyone into thinking they are harmless Jita miners in awe of Chribba. Their deception won't work on me!
20:40 The G0dfathers vs. Test Alliance Please Ignore - Oh jesus, nearly done! Fuck it, G0ds pretty much split in half, and this half joined up for some Squid Facwar shooting at them nasty Feds. TEST is well, TEST, and after having done so badly last year, they might be looking for some redemption. TEST is showing signs of improvement in game, but we shall see. I wish them luck but wonder if G0ds have what's needed to take them out.
End of Day Two
Good Lord, no wonder I hated doing these posts, this took forever >.< I will have to start on monday next week so it will be done by Friday!
Enjoy! Streams start tomorrow.