Kira: “I was very happy to play Galio”

Kira: “I was very happy to play Galio”

After a subpar start to the 2018 Season World Championship for Gambit Esports, team’s midlaner Mykhailo “Kira” Harmash took time to share their experiences at the most important event of the year.

In their opening match, the CIS representatives faced off against the Taiwan Regional Finals winners G-Rex. The 36 minute long match proved to be less than challenging for the team from Taiwan. To put things in perspective, Gambit failed to take down a single enemy turret in the entirety of the match.

Harmash and his team managed to bounce back in the second game against Kaos Latin Gamers. Gambit pulled a reversal and beat KLG in a 29 minute game. Kira’s Galio proved to be instrumental to his team’s success. GMB overcame the second hurdle for a much-needed confidence boost.

Tomorrow Gambit will face off against G-Rex and Kaos Latin Gamers again. Two teams with the best record in the group will progress towards the next round, for a chance to get into the main event.

After the dust has settled, Mykhailo “Kira” Harmash in a short interview talked about their team’s performance on the first day of the event.

Vie: You seemed like a completely different player on Galio than you were on Malzahar. How did that game go for you?

Kira: I’m really happy that on this server all skins are unlocked and that I could pick the one I really wanted. I was very happy to play Galio. I feel very confident playing him. There’s a lot of engage potential there and I actually feel useful for once. Unlike some other champions.

Vie: Tell me about your first game. It really didn’t go so well for you. What was the idea behind those picks?

Kira: We knew he had to play around top and mid. In the middle, I had to play a painfully passive game against my own wishes. At one point it was getting really frustrating because we could’ve easily killed Syndra there, gained a lot of vision control, and win the game thanks to our bot lane.

Vie: It looked like you will play around your bottom lane, but something collapsed there. 

Kira: PvPStejos didn’t call Diamond to top lane, because we wanted to protect our bot lane in case they start playing really aggressively there — like they usually do. Our coaches scouted them really well and told us exactly how to play this one. The execution of that plan was the problem. Especially in the middle lane.

Vie: G-Rex is still a major dark-horse, it couldn’t have been easy to scout them. Did they play the way you expected them to? 

Kira: I think it was what we expected. It may not seem like much, but it really helped that two of our guys have already played against one of them before. I mean Toyz (G-Rex coach). Some of the things never really changed since the Taipei Assassins days. We knew some things and we were ready for them.

Vie: Thanks for your time, Kira. Any parting words?

Kira: Thanks for watching, hope you enjoyed it. The first match wasn’t very good, the second one was a bit better. I think the next one will be even better and we will show some cool things. We will do our best.

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Climbing the ladder in 8.13

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Hayro, Tortee triumph at the Star Challenge

Hayro, Tortee triumph at the Star Challenge

The Turkish Hayro and the Russian Tortee come out victorious in the first ever PUBG Mobile esports event in Europe — the Star Challenge regional finals.

After two intense days of games in Kiev, Ukraine, the winners were decided for the inaugural PUBG Mobile event. 16 teams, featuring PUBG streamers, content creators, and influencers, all came with only one goal. The battle wasn’t just for the $20,000 in prize money, but for the two spots in World Finals, to be held in Dubai later this year.

The Global Finals will see all the regional winners competing for the lion’s share of $600,000 in cash prizes.

The European qualifier saw some big-name players taking a shot at success, including FaZe Clan player David “Fuzzface” Tillberg, popular streamer and former Call of Duty professional Nikolai “Mazarin1k” Lazarev, PUBG player Mario “RaptorDaRaptor” Joos, and others.

The Turkish Hayro shot up the rankings in the first game and managed to keep their top spot for the entirety of the tournament. After ten games they had 4700 points — 500 more than the second team. They also confidently led in kills, racking up a total 87 of them.

Hayro. Photo via Starladder.

Tortee and his team followed in second with 4200 points. Before the last game, team Tortee were in the fourth place, 400 points behind the second place team. A chicken dinner and 17 kills in the last game earned them enough points to qualify for the World Finals in Dubai.

Just 95 points behind them finished RaptorDaRaptor and his team. Third place in the final game didn’t prove to be enough to keep their second place position. They got an impressive 74 kills over ten games, second most in the entire tournament.

The overall results are as follows:

1st – Team Hayro – $10,000 + spot at Star Challenge Global Finals 2018 Dubai

2nd – Team Tortee – $6,000 + spot at Star Challenge Global Finals 2018 Dubai

3rd – Team RaptorDaRaptor – $4,000

Unsurprisingly, the two competitive PUBG Mobile teams came out ahead in the first European esports event. A week of preparation for the other teams didn’t prove to be enough to compete against the actual Mobile pro’s.

Although the battle was closer than one would expect.

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clawz: “I doubt that any sizeable organization will ever be interested in Quake”

clawz: “I doubt that any sizeable organization will ever be interested in Quake”

Two times QuakeCon Duel champion Nikita “clawz” Marchinsky talks about winning, Nyx, sponsors in Quake and just waiting for the much anticipated CTF game mode.

The young Belarusian came out victorious for the second year in a row in the year’s most stacked tournament. QuakeCon this year again as well attracted the best players in the world.

Since then, the twenty-year-old player joined Myztro Gaming and is preparing for the future tournaments.

Vie: You overcame everyone at QuakeCon in a very convincing manner. Were there any matches that actually made you sweat?

clawz: Before the game against Garpy I was feeling really nervous. I knew I had no right to lose that match and that got to my head. I also got pretty close to it in a game against DaHang. I was leading 2:0 in rounds and was just feeling this gloom of things to come.

Vie: Are you getting used to the US? You have been to three QuakeCons already.

clawz: I didn’t really get a chance to properly explore USA. But every place is good in its own way.

Vie: Let’s talk about your Nyx. The aggressive approach to attack your opponent straight out of invisibility. Was that something planned or did it just happen for you?

clawz: Nyx is a very underrated champion. Her skill-cap is really high and I like her a lot. I like the things you can do with her, even considering her limited resources. I play her on almost every map. She’s especially strong on DM6 and Ruins, but you have to be able to hit a lot.

Vie: And which weapons do you like? Or should say which one, rail or LG?

clawz: LG (lightning gun, ed.note). It’s a strong weapon from a psychological perspective. It’s good in both attack and defense, and most importantly — it’s stable.

Vie: And your favorite game mode?

clawz: I’m just waiting for CTF. Playing with four people results are always more stable. And it’s really that much more fun to play with more players.

Vie: What’s the situation with sponsors in Quake right now? You must be getting a lot of attention, being a two-time world champion.

clawz: I doubt that any sizeable organization will ever be interested in Quake. The deal that I’m being offered all the time — with 10-20% of my prize winnings being taken away — from small organizations just isn’t right. Because Quake doesn’t get that many viewers there’s very little we have to offer each other.

Vie: Do you ever watch your own replays?

clawz: I don’t. And never did, actually.

Vie: What is the change Quake needs the most right now?

clawz: The game itself. Some game mode that would finally attract people. I really wouldn’t mind seeing a Quake Battle Royale game.

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Boombl4: “When we came to the Major, we weren’t a team anymore”

Boombl4: “When we came to the Major, we weren’t a team anymore”

Right after Winstrike went 0-3 in the FACEIT Major London 2018 the Russian organization released the majority of the team. Kirill “Boombl4” Mikhailov talked about the reasons behind the change.

The ELEAGUE Major Boston 2018 was nothing short of life-changing for the Russian team. Then Quantum Bellator Fire team beat the CIS Minor, qualified through the new Challengers stage, and even made their way through a stacked group stage and earned a spot in the playoffs.

Since then, however, the team failed to perform online and didn’t qualify for any international tournaments. In the FACEIT Major Winstrike failed to put much of a fight in the first two games against Team Liquid and Fnatic. Only in the deciding game of the tournament, Winstrike started showing a fighting spirit in the match against Cloud9.

Even following a series of underwhelming results, the news about the majority of the team being released came as a surprise.

As Kirill “Boombl4” Mikhailov explained in a social media post, the situation within the team went awry ahead of the Major tournament. “When we came to the Major, we were not a team anymore,” he wrote. “It didn’t happen overnight. Slowly the climate within the team started to change. We were communicating less. People stopped playing for the team and started playing because it was their job. Definitely not because they enjoyed it.”

Winstrike. Photo via HLTV.org

According to Boombl4, the way players approached the game slowly became a real issue within the team and the motivation to perform dropped significantly. Before they knew any better, losing became a part of the routine. “Everyone just started playing worse,” he continued. “It became a job where you were doing what you’re told. It stopped being about individual performance.”

The lack of communication only worsened the state of mind within the team. Instead of talking about their issues, everyone closed-off and continued as they were. In the end, it led to the current situation and Boombl4 believes it’s one of the worst things that can happen to a team. “When you stop discussing what you don’t like about the team with your teammates, that’s when you’re in trouble. And that’s exactly what happened to us.”

As to why Winstrike decided out of five players to keep only him, Mikhailov has a pretty good idea. “They probably thought I would make a good team captain,” he said. “I always had a very serious approach to everything I do. A lot of people want to play with me as well.”

“I could gather a good group of players for the new team,” he concluded.

As of right now, waterfaLLZ, Kvik, jmqa, and balblna are all teamless, however, their return to the new Winstrike roster is still possible.

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Star Challenge brings PUBG Mobile to Europe

Star Challenge brings PUBG Mobile to Europe

PUBG Mobile is about to get more competitive, with a Star Challenge tournament series coming to Europe later this week.

Even though we haven’t seen much potential for competitive play in PUBG’s mobile game, it turns out that’s because we weren’t looking hard enough. But that is about to change, with a new series of competitive tournaments coming to Tencent’s PUBG Mobile.

Today, Tencent Games together with PUBG Corp. announce their tournament PUBG Mobile Star Challenge coming to Europe. The European qualifier event will feature 16 top streamers, influencers, and pro players vying for their chance at a chicken dinner. The competitors will fight for $600,000 in prize money which will be distributed over several global tournaments.

The first stop will take place in Kiev Cybersport Arena, in the very heart of Ukraine. The event begins this weekend and will happen on September 29 and 30. PUBG Mobile Star Challenge will be streamed live on PUBG Mobile Youtube, Twitch, and Facebook channels.

Invited players will form the squads of four people around themselves for the event. In a similar fashion to PUBG’s first invitational at Gamescom 2017, the invited players are famous streamers, community members, and content creators coming from both versions of the game.

Star Challenge will feature both game modes, with TPP being played on the first day and FPP on the second. The event series are made up of the Qualifiers, Preliminaries, Regional Finals, and World Finals.

The push for PUBG Mobile esports is in line with Bluehole’s five-year plan announced during the PUBG Global Invitational 2018. There are more events planned for the mobile game in the near future, with developers being keen on making it a success. The big factor for the future of the game will be the viewership numbers and the community response.

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