Call of Duty

How ACHES became OpTic Gaming CoD's biggest nemesis

by Jacob Hale

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Patrick ‘ACHES’ Price's rivalry with OpTic Gaming is legendary. Here's how one player became the kryptonite of the most popular and successful organization in the history of Call of Duty.

Now the captain of Los Angeles Guerillas, ACHES’ accomplishments under major orgs such as FaZe Clan, Evil Geniuses, and Complexity made sure he was always working against the GreenWall. Unfortunately for them, he was very good at his job.

In our latest Call of Duty documentary, we discuss how the ACHES vs OpTic blossomed from humble beginnings, grew into a bitter feud, and eventually became a storyline that underlined entire careers. It all began with a simple push.

Aches playing Call of Duty.
MLG
Aches has been a constant thorn in OpTic's side.

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The Push

‘The push’ seems to have been the catalyst for the rivalry that unfolded between ACHES and OpTic, dating all the way back to UMG Chicago 2012.

In the grand final of the tournament, OpTic and ACHES' Complexity team went up against each other, with Nadeshot's OpTic side finally taking the win – and letting their CoL opponents know about it. In response, ACHES pushed Nadeshot rather than shake his hand, and a rivalry was born.

Under that Complexity team, ACHES went on to be one of the best players in Black Ops 2 and play in a dynasty team whose moniker as the best team ever could not be argued until several years later. It was a trying time for OpTic fans, who regularly saw their team fall short, and to see their arch-nemesis winning so handily at most events made it all the more painful to watch.

Chris Marsh interviewing Aches ESQV 2015
YouTube: Dexerto
ACHES was at the top of his game, and OpTic were always a team he wanted to win against.

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Complexity's dominance continued into the Ghosts season, where they looked almost unbeatable early in the year. OpTic looked like they had a shot at beating them in the upper bracket of CoD Champs 2014, but ACHES' team prevailed and eventually went on to win the title.

OpTic finally got their revenge at X-Games 2014, where they defeated ACHES and company on route to winning a coveted X-Games gold medal. This was the highlight of OpTic's Ghosts season and coL bounced back to beat them again in the next event, MLG Anaheim 2014, despite rumblings of inter-team turmoil.

Eventually, as the Ghosts season waned, coL's dynastic roster split apart but ACHES' rivalry with OpTic Gaming was about to get a whole lot more interesting.

OpTic Call of Duty with X-Games gold medals.
Twitter: Red Bull
OpTic's X-Games win was monumental for the organization.

Advanced Warfare: Turning of the tide

It wasn’t until the Advanced Warfare season where the Call of Duty community saw a sharp turn in each party’s luck and results. In the off-season between the two titles, OpTic had bought out the Evil Geniuses team’s contracts and used the players to build a stronger main team, as well as a second-team under the name ‘OpTic Nation.’

The only player to not play under the OpTic banner after this was, of course, ACHES. He left to join a team that had become the Call of Duty kings on YouTube, taking OpTic’s original USP and amplifying it ten-fold, FaZe Clan.

And despite having a team that looked vastly inferior on paper, ACHES defied all odds and logistics to beat OpTic in the grand final of MLG Columbus 2014, the first event of the season.

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MLG
ACHES wasn't going to let anything get in the way of him beating OpTic for the championship.

With five stitches at the base of his thumb, and claiming to have had no sleep the night before thanks to injuries he had sustained the night before, it looked unlikely that ACHES wouldn't even be playing in the grand-final matchup. But, not willing to let his limitations get the better of him, he didn't just play the match, he won it against all the odds.

Then, fast-forward to the 2015 World Championships and OpTic Gaming are on an event-winning streak that had set them far apart from the competition. They were a shoo-in to be world champions, the result an inevitability rather than just an expectation.

That was until they found themselves unceremoniously knocked into the loser’s bracket, facing none other than ACHES in a spot that saw the loser’s head out in seventh place.

Of course, you already know what happened: ACHES’ FaZe Red team won 3-0, making short work of the most successful team in Advanced Warfare. Not only that, but shortly after, Nadeshot announced his retirement.

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In 2016, OpTic fans must have thought they were having deja-vu – dominant for most of the year, but a World Championship clash saw them facing ACHES once more in the loser’s bracket, facing a 7-8th placement if they lost.

MLG
ACHES solidified his villain status among OpTic fans after his team's emphatic Champs performance in 2016.

It seemed impossible for Cloud9 to knock them out, but that ACHES magic that had become ingrained in the OpTic psyche reared its head once again. C9 thwarted OpTic’s chance at a world title with a nail-biting 1v1 in game 5, round 11 that shook the CoD community to its core.

At the following World Championship event in 2017, OpTic went without facing ACHES for the first time in the history of the event – and won the whole thing. Meanwhile, ACHES had his worst Champs placement yet, falling at top 16. Then, a year later, the World War II World Championship tournament rolled around.

World War II: The collapse of the wall

Placed in the same group, and with one match left to play, ACHES – now back on EG – needed a 3-0 win to get out of pool play, while OpTic needed just one map win to move on to the bracket in their worst season yet.

Evil Geniuses became somewhat of an unstoppable force against OpTic, and despite the GreenWall being one of the biggest and greatest teams in CoD history, they took a 3-0 loss and placed top 24. This was, and remains to this day, OpTic’s worst-ever placement, and of course, it was orchestrated by ACHES, who went on to win the whole tournament.

The direction this rivalry takes with the dawn of a new era is yet to be seen. The franchised Call of Duty League brings a manner of changes to the CoD esports sphere, not least the fact that OpTic now is not the same as OpTic then.

So does ACHES’ ability to bring out the worst in OpTic continue with the new OpTic Gaming LA team – his local rivals? Or does it transfer to the Chicago Huntsmen, where much of OpTic’s former lifeblood now lives, with Seth ‘Scump’ Abner, Matthew ‘FormaL’ Piper, and Hector ‘H3CZ’ Rodriguez all occupying spots in the Chicago team?