Team Astralis is a professional eSports team from Denmark. They are most famous for their achievements in Counter-Strike and are known to be the first player-made team in the history of CS.
Today, Team Astralis represents one of the leading Counter-Strike: Global Offensive teams on the planet. In this article, we will try to identify the exact reasons and factors that contributed to this success, and what actually distinguishes Astralis from the other eSports teams in the market.
Team Astralis History
Team Astralis was founded in January 2016 in Denmark. It was founded by the members of team Question Mark right after their departure from the well know team SoloMid.
What distinguishes them from other professional eSports teams is that Astralis is entirely player-made. They have started completely DIY and yet managed to get funds from various investors such as Sunstone Capital and individual investors such as the renowned entrepreneur Tommy Ahlers.
One of the most important people responsible for leading the team through their early days is in fact their manager, Frederik Byskov aka “realition”.
As the team is very young, there is not a lot of history behind them except of their outstanding achievements and some minor and major roster changes that eventually crafted Astralis in what it is today. One of the highlights when it comes to their roster changes is when they announced that one of their founding members, more specifically Rene “cajunb” Borg was transferred to Team Dignitas in May of 2016. They also managed to get Lukas Rossander aka “gla1ve” within their ranks in October 2016. In the same year and month, they sold Finn “Karrigan” Andersen.
It was pretty much an amazing idea to risk everything and just get out of SoloMid and start a new team from scratch. That is exactly what they have managed to do and it represents a revolutionary move in the history of eSports.
Their current rosters consist of mega experienced players and the roster is quite different than your average pro-roster. This roster of team Astralis consists of members entirely from Denmark.
Their roster did not go through significant changes apart of those mentioned earlier. Today, this represents a very functional, if not one of the best Counter Strike: Global Offensive rosters in the eSports industry.
- Coach Danny Sorensen aka „zonic“, one of the founding members who joined on January 19th, 2016. He is from Denmark, as is the rest of the team.
- Nicolai Hvilshoj Reedtz aka „dev1ce“ – who joined on January 19th, 2016. He is from Denmark and his role is Awper/Rife. He is also one of the founding members of the organization.
- Peter Rothmann aka „dupreeh “ – who also joined on January 19th, 2016 and is a founding member. His role and in-game position is Rifler (entry fragger).
- Andreas Hojsleth aka „Xyp9x“ – fourth and the final member who joined on January 19th of 2016. He plays on the position of a Rifler (support) and is also a founding member of team Astralis.
- Markus Kjaerbye aka „Kjaerbye“ joined team Astralis on May 19th, 2016. He plays on the position of Rifler.
The last, but definitely not the least, is the controversial Lukas Egholm Rossander, aka „gla1ve “who is also the in-game leader for the squad. Joined on October 24th, 2016
Team Astralis, being such a young organization, started competing in tournaments less than a month after its inception. In the first months they started out without winning any tournaments. However, by the end of their first year of founding, they managed to get a 1st place winning streak.
It was clear from the start that the team means business and their impressive list of achievements is there as the ultimate proof.
The year 2016, the very same year they were founded, started out with a bang! Their first participation in a tournaments was the Global eSports Cup – Season 1 on the 7th of February 2016. They managed to get a third place and their first experience in competing as the newly formed team.
The next month, on the 18th of March, they scored a second place on the Counter Pit League Season 2
Less than a month later they, attended MLG Major Championship: Columbus on the 3rd of April, 2016. They managed to get 3 – 4th place, which was a huge success. Namely, this championship was on a much higher level than the previous two ones. And the money was much different. For the previous tournaments they got $ 19,200 and $ 30,000 in prize money, and for the one in April they got a staggering $70k.
They have made a 2-3 month break and in July of 2016 they participated in the eLeague Season 1. Here, they placed 5-8th on July 7th. They took yet another, this time a 3-4 month break from tournaments, and enrolled at the Intel Extreme Masters XI – Oakland tournament. They managed to get a 3rd-4th finish in that tournament on the 20th of November, 2016.
On the Path of Success
After a series of decent but not outstanding results, the sun started shining yet again upon team Astralis. They managed to get the 2nd place finish in the ELEAGUE Season 2, on the 3rd of December, 2016.
This also marks the largest prize won by the team in that time, bringing them a breathtaking $140,000. After the tournament, their path of outstanding success started showing. They managed to win $250,000 in the Esports Championship Series Season 2- Finals, after claiming the title on the 11th of December, 2016, which marked their first tournament victory.
They managed to do all this in their first year of existence and this victory opened the door for the next two victories.
The next victory happened on the 29th of January, 2017. It goes without saying that this was their biggest achievement in their Astralis careers. They managed to get a ground-breaking $500,000 in the ELEAGUE Major of 2017. This is by far their most notable victory to date.
The winning streak ended with the Intel Extreme Masters XI – World Championship where they once again claimed the 1st place on the 5th of March, 2017, winning $104,000 for their performance.
Their last reported tournament participation was at the StarLadder i-League StarSeries 3 where they placed second and won $50,000
Astralis Partners and Sponsors
Along their steady path of success, Astralis has managed to gain quite a few individual and corporate partners alike.
They were first operated by RFRSH Entertainment and got funds from organizations such as Sunstone Capital and individual entrepreneurs such as Tommy Ahlers. Today, they are incorporated as Astralis ApS and their main sponsor is the car manufacturing giant Audi.
The very idea to leave a professional eSports team together and make a new one proved to be very lucrative. They were able to garner international attention from corporations and individuals alike, and from its inception in January 2016 it can safely be said that Astralis is the definition of success in the world of eSports.