Player profile: Bwipo

bwipo league of legends
Credit: Lol Esports Flickr

Who is Bwipo?

Gabriel Rau, better known as Bwipo, is a professional League of Legends competitor.

Until recently he performed the duties of a toplaner, but in May 2021, while playing for Fnatic, he temporarily switched his playing position to the jungle.

After becoming an undisputed cog inside the Fnatic machinery Bwipo became one of the most beloved players by European fans. Having left the team in 2021, he now tries his luck playing for Team Liquid in North America.

Position and play style

Bwipo can play both toplane and jungle roles; in the latter he has taken a liking to champions such as Viego, Rumble, Karthus, Mundo and, essentially, any strong metagame champion.

Having only recently displayed his abilities for the jungle , his champion pool in this department is not as extensive as that of others professional players, and when given the choice he will almost always go for the most powerful characters, with whom he nevertheless is quite competent.

Until May 2021 Bwipo played exclusively as a toplaner; there he proved himself extremely proficient against his opponents with champions such as GangplankOrnnAatroxSionRenekton or Urgot.

Aggressive inside the Rift, his distinctive play style seeks constant confrontation with his opponents; he is also well known for teasing them with dances and character animation laughs after making a good play.

Career

Bwipo began playing competitive League of Legends in 2015, when he joined the ranks of mCon Esports. He spent three years attending regional tournament in both Belgium and The Netherlands, showing decent results; he particularly stood out in 2017 while playing for Sector One, with whom he won 10 small tourneys.

Bwipo´s chance arrived in 2018 after Fnatic hired him as an auxiliar replacement for sOAZ. He played very little during the split and failed to win a single game, but Fnatic managed to qualify in first place for the playoff and sOAZ fell injured, so Bwipo was forced to fully assume his position. He had strong improvements in face of the upcoming crucial tournament, so much so that he won his first European title after beating G2 ­by a 3-0 score in the finals, although Bwipo considered that he was just in the right place at the right time and that his teammates were the ones to open the door that allowed him also to get the trophy.

Despite his victory, there was still some level of distrust around the Belgian player since he had been brought in to take over one of the best toplaners that Europe had seen until that point. Yet Bwipo´s numbers were quite promising: not only had he rampaged through lesser events, he had consistently spent three consecutive years among the top 25 highest ranked Solo queue players in the European online server. Bwipo had much to prove, and luckily for him he had the means to do so. It was only a matter of time until he earned the trust of the audience through good displays of skill.

The summer split of 2018 was notoriously different from what the traditional metagame of League of Legends offered. The botlane saw itself filled with top champions, and Bwipo tried his luck alongside Hylissang, becoming an almost unstoppable duo that managed to end the season with 13 victories and 5 defeats; Fnatic won the playoff. In his first year Bwipo had won the two LCS splits and was promptly named the best rookie of the season. At Worlds, with Bwipo back in the toplane, Fnatic kept surprising everybody after reaching the finals of a tournament they have started-off in the infamous group of death, where they had successfully faced off against Chinese RNG for the first time ever. Bwipo and his teammates got out of the group in first place; from then on they got out as favorites in their bracket, but it was Invictus Gaming who sadly defeated them 0-3 in the final (Fnatic had actually defeated Invictus in the group stage). For Bwipo specially this was a hard defeat, yet it gave him the confidence he needed to stop being under the shadow of sOAZ and taking a decisive step forward.

With the Belgian athlete at his best, Fnatic decided it could dispose of sOAZ for the 2019 season. Bwipo had proved he could be a critical player and started using more aggressive champions, especially Aatrox, with whom he was quite feared. Fnatic came in first in the spring split and second in the summer one, losing to its great rival, G2. Finally they secured the second seed for the world championship and managed to get to quarter finals, where they lost against the eventual winner, FunPlus Phoenix.

2020 was known as a year of fierce rivalry between G2 and Fnatic; unfortunately for Bwipo, the fruits of it were ultimately collected by Ocelote´s boys. G2 won both playoff finals against Fnatic, both by 3-0. They came back to the world championships as second seeds and they yet again fell during quarters, this time against Top Esports.

In 2021 competition in Europe turned extreme. The situation went from having two strong teams to five due to the addition of MAD Lions, Rogue and Misfits. Bwipo also saw how G2 stole away his former ADC teammate, Rekkles; Nemesis too abandoned Fnatic. The spring split served as one of adaptation for the incoming new playesr, Nisqy and UpseT, and Fnatic did not achieve higher than a fifth place. For the summer split something had to change for them to reach Worlds. It seems the first thing to change was Bwipo himself, who decided to roleswap to the jungle and left the toplane duties to Adam. The regular season did not go all that bad, with a fifth place, but only two victories away from ranking first. Fnatic also got second place at the LEC, and during the playoff the team took some much wanted vengeance against G2 by taking away the last European spot for Worlds; they would fall in group stage.

Saying goodbye to Fnatic, by the end of November 2021 Bwipo would sign for Team Liquid; he would display good results with the team during 2022, winning the Lock In event at the LCS and the Spring split with a 14-4 score. During the playoff the team would fall against EG, getting a third place, and the same would happen during the Summer split. Sadly, Bwipo and Liquid would not qualify for Worlds.

It would be in December 2022 that Bwipo would abandon his position with the main team and become a content creator for the organization.

Fun facts about Bwipo

  • He won the 1v1 organized tourney at the All Star Las Vegas in 2019; he repeated the feat in 2020.
  • It is usual for Bwipo to be seen laughing and enjoying himself quite a lot during the course of his matches.
  • Wide Bwipo
NameGabriël “Bwipo” Rau


Source of photograph: Riot Games
BirthdateDecember 24, 1998
BirthplaceBruges, Belgium.
TeamsmCon esports (2015-2016)
Enigma Esports Benelux (2016)
Sensei Esports (2016)
Sector One (2016-2017)
Dark Passage (2017)
Veni Vidi Vicí (2017)
RoX (2017)
nDurance Gaming (2017-2018)
Fnatic (2018-2021)
Team Liquid (2021-present)

Also available in: Español

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