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Talent Player Luka 'Kaktus' Ollikainen Promoted to Academy Roster

At the beginning of the year, Northern Star Gaming unveiled a new initiative: the Talent Program, aimed at boosting the competitive level of Finnish and Nordic young players in Fortnite. The program's inaugural season kicked off in early January, with six young promising Fortnite players beginning a six-month coaching program under the auspices of Northern Star. One of these talents was Luka ''Kaktus'' Ollikainen.

Kaktus, a 13-year-old Finnish prodigy, has shown exceptional promise right from the start of the year, making it to the finals of three different Cash Cups and earning $100. However, his current achievements pale in comparison to Kaktus's journey in the last season's Fortnite Champion Series, where he made it to the semifinals.

Kaktus entered the FNCS fray in only the second open qualifier, placing immense pressure on himself to succeed, knowing he had only one shot left. After numerous matches, he advanced to the final round, finishing in 27th place. This marked the first time in his career that Kaktus had progressed from open qualifiers.

Due to the new format, Kaktus hadn't yet qualified for the so-called semifinals, as there were two different brackets: the Lower Bracket and the Upper Bracket. The Upper Bracket corresponded to the FNCS semifinals, offering a path to the FNCS Grand Finals, while the Lower Bracket provided a chance to advance to the Upper Bracket. Thanks to strong performances, Kaktus made it to the third round of the Upper Bracket, making his chances of reaching the Grand Finals realistic. Despite high level of the games and relative inexperience, Kaktus fell short in the semifinals, but this only underscores his potential as one of Finland's most promising Fortnite players, achieving such feats at just 13 years old. After the first season, Kaktus ranks 192nd on the European Power Ranking list and third on the Finnish Power Ranking list.

Promotion to Northern Star's academy team is by no means a given and requires a tremendous amount of effort. Reflecting on his future, Kaktus remarked:

"It's really exciting to be playing at a higher level, so to speak. I've never played under a professional team before, so this is all new to me. I believe I can improve my performance now and achieve much better results, which is why I want to earn more money and climb higher in the standings next season. Let's see if I'm even seen in the Main Roster in the future. Time will tell."

Jusif Ali, CEO of Northern Star Gaming, is pleased to have Kaktus join the organization:

"Kaktus is truly an exceptional player on the Finnish scale. He is very young and has just started competing at this level, which gives us a great foundation to mold Kaktus into a future star. Of course, the work will be tough, and we believe that our efforts on his behalf will yield results that will see Kaktus in the Grand Finals and even in our Main Roster in the future."

The new season begins this week, so preparations for the upcoming season are well underway. Currently, Northern Star has three contracted players:

Aleksi ''Raifla'' Ruuska

Artur ''G13ras'' Gierasimovicz

Main Roster

Luka ''Kaktus'' Ollikainen

Academy Roster



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