ubah: “Players give feedback all the time, but it simply doesn’t reach them”

ubah: “Players give feedback all the time, but it simply doesn’t reach them”

Coming out fourth at the PUBG Global Invitational 2018 wasn’t good enough for Ivan “ubah” Kapustin. The PUBG prodigy left his mates at Natus Vincere to join FaZe Clan powerhouse.

Before becoming one of the best fraggers in PUBG, Ivan “ubah” Kapustin was known as an up-and-coming talent in the CIS Dota 2 scene. He played for the top teams in the region, including Team Empire, HellRaisers, and Power Rangers. But when PUBG came out, ubah made a switch without much consideration.

Even though Natus Vincere came to Berlin as one of the favorites to win PUBG’s first-ever $2 million dollar event, the luck wasn’t on their side. First, they had to make do with the last minute substitute. But even after the tournament ended NaVi struggled to return to winning ways. It was time for change.

Ivan “ubah” Kapustin left the Ukrainian organization but did not stay a free agent for long. He was hastily recruited by arguably the best team in the world, FaZe Clan.

In an interview, ubah told us about the differences in practice, the horrendous state of the game, his disappointment with the developers, among other topics.

Vie: In one of the videos on your channel, it was said that the practice in PUBG is peculiar. Can you tell us more about this? Especially, given that you have training experience in Dota 2.

ubah: First, we have scrims, where all the top teams sit and usually train five games a day before the tournament. Of course, before the PGI no one wanted to train the TPP mode, except for the teams that went to Berlin. I can’t specifically mention differences from DotA: you train, play, watch replays and find mistakes so that they are not allowed to continue.

Vie: How is your tactical training? Do you say who is running where and when, if the circle suddenly falls in some way, or does it all happen impromptu during the game itself? 

ubah: Basically it happens already in the game itself. We look at how the circle falls and what position is better to take, but since this is all random, it makes no sense to discuss actions further than one step at a time.

Vie: Doesn’t this make the imbalance in the competitive element? After all, how can you compete in a game in which you cannot be ready until the last moment? 

ubah: You may be ready. If you better adapt to the circles, make the right decisions in taking positions, you will win. For this, 16-20 games are held so that teams have more options for making decisions and the right to make mistakes. The one who makes the most correct decisions wins. Sometimes it can happen that a team is sitting in a circle for the second time in a row, but when you win in a game where you were constantly on the move – the feelings are indescribable.

Vie: It’s no secret that PUBG has FPS issues. Even at PGI FPS would drop as low as 10 FPS on tournament computers. Do you think that’s fine? 

ubah: Basically, the FPS fell when the rotations began on the machines. When the third circle, for example, 75 people are alive from 80 and the circle goes somewhere abruptly. On the map, 30 machines start to go at the same time, and the frame rate drops greatly.

Vie: And was it somehow discussed with the developers? 

ubah: No, we didn’t tell them anything. It is difficult to contact them and talk about something. Green does not apply to those people who can say: “I play this game for a very long time and like that, believe me, it will be better.” So it does not work with them.

Vie: You actually sound very bitter…

ubah: How else? We have a lot of suggestions to the developers. Roughly speaking, professional players give feedback all the time, but it simply doesn’t reach them at all. Or when, for example, problems with sound started, they asked the person to name the headphone model and see that he put the driver when the problem was obviously in the game.

Vie: Have you considered switching to Fortnite

ubah: No, I did not. If I change the game, it’s not Fortnite. I don’t like it. But in PUBG, most things suit me.

Vie: What is missing from the professional scene in PUBG

ubah: This is a good question. From the developers of more feedback, so that they listen to the players. It is necessary to focus on optimization, adding high-quality death match for training would be nice. In principle, everything.

Vie: When people ask you how PUBG is better than Fortnite, what do you tell them? 

ubah: I watched a couple of streams, where 20 people in the final zone are just sitting above each other, not doing anything. It seems to me that this is reason enough. 

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Fulambia: “Succeeding in an environment dominated by men feels very satisfying”

Fulambia: “Succeeding in an environment dominated by men feels very satisfying”

Member of the first all-female professional PUBG team, Fiore “Fulambia” Boncompagni, told us about what it’s like to compete (and succeed) in the environment dominated by men.

Fulambia’s Brazil Gaming House recently overcame some of the best PUBG teams in Latin America and secured themselves a spot in the Liga Profesional de Esports’ Super League. The first female PUBG team will compete against the best teams in the region for a spot in the $2 million USD Grand Finals next year.

Although the majority of the community didn’t take the team seriously at first, through sheer perseverance BGH overcame all odds and established themselves as serious competitors.

But the road to Latin America’s Pro League wasn’t easy for the team. Competing in the environment dominated by men is difficult, admits Fiore “Fulambia” Boncompagni, but finally reaching that goal is very satisfying.

How are you Fulambia? First of all, congratulations for having qualified for the LPE Battlegrounds final. You qualified together with the best teams in Latin America. How does that feel?

Fulambia: Well, I am very well, and the truth is that it felt great. To tell the truth, it took us almost by surprise, since match 3 was accompanied by many mistakes that we had to correct in the last match. To see that it was possible for us to reverse our mistakes and get back to the top of the rating was excellent.

How did you form this squad? What prompted you to form an all-female PUBG team for BGH?

Fulambia: Previously we had another roster, in which we were a group of friends having fun. But the thing started to get serious when Queen, known as bbyebye in-game, got approached with a serious proposal. They wanted us to go all the way. It was there when we put together this roster, where we all had the same goal, the same commitment, and the same desire.

Brazil Gaming House was immediately interested in us, since we played many Brazilian scrims and got their attention. Sincerely, day by day they make us continue to choose them since they really take care of their players, which keeps us very happy.

There are people who believe in the disparity between men and women when playing these types of games and you are living proof that this is not the case. How does it feel to succeed in an environment completely dominated by men?

Fulambia: Honestly, I’m not going to lie — it feels very satisfying. Although it is a team that is still solidifying every day, just being there and competing side by side with many great teams is great. I am proud to know that we are where we are because we leave everything behind and we do not let ourselves be intimidated. We don’t let others step on us and that’s the key.

How do you see the competitive scene of PUBG in Latin America? What does it lack to be like the scenes of North America or Europe?

Fulambia: The scene is getting better, and these tournaments give rise to the undoubted growth of it. I think that to be up to North America and Europe we would have to talk about infrastructure, which we do not have and an important commitment between organizations and players.

Thanks for your time. Any shoutouts?

Fulambia: Mainly I want to thank Brasil Gaming House for continuing to support us, the girls of the team, and our coach. Thank you!

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0nuqtive: “The closed qualifiers for PEL will be the most crucial step in our careers”

0nuqtive: “The closed qualifiers for PEL will be the most crucial step in our careers”

After a prolonged dry spell and numerous roster changes, AVANGAR is looking to get back on the winning horse with a new line-up built around Alexey “0nuqtive” Trufanov.

The year for Kazakhstan based AVANGAR began with a first-place finish at IEM Katowice 2018. After that, however, followed a series of subpar results. Although AVANGAR managed to qualify for PUBG Global Invitational, a $2 million dollar tournament, the performance there was underwhelming and they finished 16th in the TPP event.

After their team was invited to the closed qualifier for PUBG Europe League, Alexey “0nuqtive” Trufanov told starladder that the new team will be built around him. Last month AVANGAR brought in TORNADO Energy’s Mikhail “azverin” Naumenko, Vega Squadron’s Maxim “Maxiz0r” Tatarintsev, and NaVi’s Taras “Snoopykx” Bazyazichniy in hopes of returning to the winning path.

In the interview, Alexey “0nuqtive” Trufanov talked about his new teammates, playing without a shot caller, and how PEL qualifier will determine their future in PUBG.

You have almost completely changed the lineup of the team. Tell me please, who is responsible for coordination now and how are the roles assigned in the roster?

0nuqtive: Yes, I am the only one remaining from the old AVANGAR. We are jointly responsible for coordination and actions, we do not have any defined captain. This has its advantages, but also obvious disadvantages. For example, sometimes we lack an ultimate decision, but I am sure that we will cope with this.

Now about the weapon. Max usually gets all bolted sniper rifles, I prefer AR’s, azverin with Snoopykx use AR’s as well as DMR’s. The main thing is not to give AKM’s to Snoopykx, and AWM’s to azverin. To me as well, by the way (I’m talking about AWM’s).

What was your first impression about the new teammates?

0nuqtive: The guys want to win and understand how the game works.

Who is the “soul” of the team? Who is in charge of the mood?

0nuqtive: The soul of the team? I do not know, but azverin is just a darling! Snoopykx sometimes makes great jokes on the behalf of the enemy, which is why, when I push, my laughter literally makes my hands shaking, so I can’t shoot, thanks. Who else… Ah! Maxim, this man uses a scorpion with Beryl, may he rest in peace, and also red half grip. But in fact, Max is a cool dude, we still have to win GLL’s Wingman with him;)

Have your usual landing zones changed after reshuffles?

0nuqtive: Of course, they did, now we prefer plants nearby Mylta and Sosnovka on Erangel. Upper Georgopol is also an option, but rather as a fallback. It is more comfortable for us to play from the South of the map.

On Miramar, we take La Cobreria, El Azahar, or Tierra Bronca with Campo Militar. Prior to that, my usual place to start looting on Erangel was Upper Georgopol, while on Miramar – Minas Generales.

Do you have a team motto to raise the team spirit? If so, tell me a little about how he appeared, how it sounds when you use it.

0nuqtive: Well, motto. Recently it became ALGA AVANGAR.

How did you and the other players take the news about the appearance of such a big league in PUBG? What were your first thoughts when you found out about it?

0nuqtive: Awesome news! I want to go to Berlin again! At first, it was not clear how it would all work, because once in the league you need to play on the LAN 3 times a week for two months, and a need to live in another country for 2 months seemed like a strange idea. Now we are motivated to go through closed qualifiers for PEL, I think that this is the most crucial step in our career.

What update of the game for the last month has pleased you the most?

0nuqtive: I wasn’t happy with the latest updates, but let it be the patch where Shooting range (#21) was added, which allows me to warm up and test my weapon. And a patch with team crates before PGI (#18).

Winter is coming, and that means the release of the winter map! Are you waiting for this event? 

0nuqtive: I’m really waiting for it, I love the winter setting. It is very interesting how they will use the water, for example, is there going to be any ice? And if so, will it crack? By the way, there will finally be a place to use white camouflage, the one that from the very release of the game hasn’t had any practical use, but still, people will run with purple M24 (hi Maxim Maxiz0r).

And what do you think about the map pool in PUBG? 

0nuqtive: The ideal map pool in PUBG for me is about 5 maps with different biomes. Desert, Forest, Jungle, Savannah maybe? And the winter will be. Actually, I liked Wake island and Bozcaada, as well as Stratis in ArmA 3 BR.

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OMG xiaorong: “PUBG is like a different game every time you play”

OMG xiaorong: “PUBG is like a different game every time you play”

Coming out victorious in the PUBG’s first-ever Major, the Chinese OMG are feeling more confident than ever in their game.

Before their arrival in Berlin, the Chinese players were confident in the third-person mode. That’s the mode that they practiced the most back in China. As an added bonus, the European teams barely played TPP these days anymore. It was a golden opportunity. If a Chinese team could bring back the trophy, it would be from the TPP tournament.

But it did not go as well as they expected. Even though OMG managed to pick up the chicken dinner on the first day of the competition, the inconsistent performance cost them a lot of points. At the end of the event, the Chinese representatives found themselves in the fourth place, just behind the Korean and two European teams.

What no one saw coming, was what would happen next. On the first day of the FPP tournament OMG completely exploded. They took home three of the four games on the first day. And even on the fourth game, they finished second.

Not even a lackluster second day was enough to stop the Chinese team. OMG gathered enough points to cement their lead and became the first ever PUBG World Champions. In FPP, nonetheless.

To talk about their success in the tournament, we grabbed the whole team, as well as their coach TouTou for an interview.

Vie: How do you feel about winning the PUBG Global Invitational 2018 in the first-person mode tournament?

TouTou: Very happy. We played the game our way and we will continue to lead the team in OMG style. I want to show OMG’s ambition to all the teams around the world.

silentBT: I felt very bad about performing poorly in the third person mode. I still don’t know how we managed to play so well in the FPP mode, but it happened and it was amazing.

Vie: You guys played very aggressively in the FPP tournament.

xiaohaixxxx: When we play in China, we are representing only one club. But when we’re playing in the World Championship, we are representing China. So we played more aggressively.

Vie: So that was your key to victory?

xiaorong: There is no one special strategy to winning because it’s like a different game every time, map and round you play.

Vie: OMG is pouring insane resources into their teams. That must be helpful as well?

TouTou: Yes. There are four other people working towards the success of this team behind the scenes. One external contact person, one manager, and two analysts. OMG is ahead of any Western team in terms of infrastructure.

Vie: Do you know what you’ll be doing with the prize money already?

lionkk: I got the personal prize money for the most kills as well as the longest survival, and for now I want to give a good gift to my girlfriend for supporting me.

Vie: You guys also played in the Charity Showdown with the popular streamers. Some of them are just really good and experienced players. What do you think separates pro players from skilled amateurs?

TouTou: Professional players and amateurs are really different. One of them are professional athletes, they do this for a living, and amateurs play games for fun and entertainment of others. I think there is a big difference there. There are many talented and practiced players like lionkk in China. In order for the Chinese esports system to develop further, I think more players should be able to stand on this stage like lionkk.

xiaohaixxxx: I think the biggest difference is in patience. Playing a game for a job is very different from simply playing a game every day. There comes a lot of strategy, patience, and so on with it.

Vie: Before I let you go, is there anything you’d like to tell your fans?

TouTou: In a regular FPS game, the Chinese teams lose to the European teams. Even in PUBG we have lost against the European teams before. But I think this PGI proved that the Chinese team can beat other European teams. We will do our best to come to the top of Battlegrounds’ esports in the future.

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JoelSophie: “It won’t be very long before Korea fully shifts to FPP”

JoelSophie: “It won’t be very long before Korea fully shifts to FPP”

Taking a closer look at the Korean PUBG scene, we sat down with OGN’s and SPOTV’s caster and analyst, Seungmin “Joel Sophie” Lee.

Those following the Korean PUBG scene are well familiar with Joel Sophie and his work. He quickly became known for his deep knowledge of the game and established himself as one of the most insightful casters in the scene. Earlier this year, he was invited to cast at StarSeries i-League Season 1, alongside some of the best PUBG casters and analysts in the world.

Korean teams had a lot of success at PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS’ first major tournament ever. Gen.G Gold took the first place in the TPP tournament and their sister team Gen.G Black, while dominated on the first day of the competition, finished in respectable sixth position. But while Gen.G players had seen some success in the Charity Showdown, it did not go for them quite as planned in the FPP event. Although the Korean players had shown some promise, they still couldn’t compete on the less familiar FPP grounds, as both teams finished outside of the Top 8.

Joel Sophie talked about his career as an esports caster, gave us an insight into the Korean representatives at PUBG Global Invitational 2018, and discussed the further impact FPP will have on the Korean PUBG community.

Vie: Tell us a bit about how you ended up where you are now. How does one become an English caster for a Korean league?

JoelSophie: I got my first job in esports when I applied and was selected as a translator for OGN, working on the League of Legends Champions Korea (LCK) program, starting June 2016. During my journey, I formed aspirations to become a caster, so I let OGN know of my ambitions, and just a year after my translating debut, a position opened up for their Blade & Soul tournament, and that became my debut as an English caster.

Photo via Twitter

Vie: Why PUBG? What was it about it that made you go “I must get in on that”?

JoelSophie: Doing well for myself and gaining respect within the industry, my ambitions grew in wanting to get involved in a major title. However, I knew that established scenes, such as LoL, Overwatch, and CS:GO, already had their own established talents. That would make it difficult for me to break in past them.

I wanted a scene that was going to grow at the same pace as I was going to grow as a caster. When I was thinking that in late 2017, the game that fit that bill was PUBG. I had confidence in my skills, that it would be recognized, and that I could grow with PUBG in their own esports endeavor. It was also intriguing that its developer, PUBG Corp., is a Korean-based company, so I was excited for an opportunity to be directly involved in communication and to maintain a close connection. I let OGN know that I wanted to be considered as a candidate for their first PUBG tournament, PSS Beta. The competition was definitely fierce, but in the end, I was selected for the position, casting with @proxywolf. Now, I am providing full coverage for two of the three PUBG Korea League Pro Tours with OGN’s PSS and SPOTV’s PWM.

Vie: Let’s go a few weeks back, before the PGI. What were your expectations for the Korean teams there?

JoelSophie: I had the pleasure of being invited to cast for StarLadder’s StarSeries i-League PUBG back in March, where I had the privilege of witnessing the competition between the best from the West and the two invited Korean teams. Needless to say, the Korean teams were underwhelming when compared to the likes of FaZe Clan and Team Liquid. I wasn’t necessarily disappointed, but simply in acceptance of the fact that this is Korea’s current competitive state. I always kept a close eye on the European competition, whether it was GLL, Auzom, etc., knowing these teams were the best in the world of PUBG esports.

Simultaneously, I was casting the Korean tournaments while keeping track of their progress when compared to their previous February through March performances, when they showed that StarLadder, IEM Katowice, and PGL Bucharest weren’t the stage that Korea would come up to shine. I definitely saw a huge improvement from our teams, especially in FPP, to a point where I wasn’t afraid this time of them facing up against the best in the world. I expected at least a Top 5 Korean finish for TPP and a similar result for them in FPP. Admittedly, it was pleasantly surprising to seer Gen.G Gold finish at the top of TPP and just simply disappointing to see them finish their FPP run the way they did. I believe they could have done much better.

Vie: It’s no secret that TPP is huge in Korea. What is the general consensus there in terms of FPP? 

JoelSophie: Even today, the general player base in Korea isn’t heavily exposed to the FPP playing environment, being unaware of its benefits. Since PUBG was the first shooting game for many at the time, the initially introduced TPP mode quickly settled as the norm. When so many people had already invested hundreds of hours in the TPP mode before FPP was ever introduced, it became difficult to find reasons sufficient enough for them to change. However, it is a completely different story for the professional scene. After disappointing finishes from top representatives at international tournaments hosted in FPP, the truth started to creep in that doing well in FPP was going to be the only way to truly find global success.

Vie: Do you see Korea switching to FPP for good anytime soon?

JoelSophie: Even the domestic tournaments shifted heavily towards FPP in their most recent formats, and my assumption is that it won’t be very long before even Korea fully shifts to an all-FPP format.

Vie: So the TPP event at the Global Invitational went pretty much as you expected?

JoelSophie: I expected Team Liquid to closely rival the top position for TPP with their past success with unconventional competition modes. This happened when Miramar and TPP were first played in tournaments, and Liquid excelled in them. Those guys thrive under pressure and do amazing things in unexpected situations.

All in all, I think placing second was a good result for Liquid, and while OMG did well to place 4th, I was a bit disappointed in 4 Angry Men. I thought they would do just as well as OMG, and for Japan, the pure player base is just simply not enough to be competitive with Korea and China at the moment, and the infrastructure needs to be improved for them to find more success, so their result at PGI wasn’t too much of a surprise. With all that said, I would never consider ‘being the best’ being ‘bare minimum,’ but general success in TPP for Korea was definitely ‘more than expected.’

Photo via Starladder

Vie: The FPP tournament did not go quite so well for Korea, though. 

JoelSophie: I honestly believed that Gen.G Gold theoretically could’ve fought it out for that top FPP position. They were absolutely prepared enough to take it home. I can only speculate that just as with any other team, their most recent accomplishments relished over TPP and the Charity Event did lead to at least some amount of complacency. I know EscA and his experience with consecutive success in the past when he played Overwatch for Lunatic Hai, so I kept my trust in him to lead his team to a proper mindset, but the moment you lean towards ‘expecting to win’ is when teams will fall hard, even more so in PUBG.

Vie: So you think Gen. G Gold could’ve done better in the FPP event?

JoelSophie: Gen.G Gold did fall hard in FPP. They ‘expected’ to do well, and I’m confident that EscA and his team have learned a valuable lesson from all this. I might be overly critical to a team that won two-thirds of a major tournament, but it’s the manner in how Gen.G Gold fell in FPP that leaves me wanting more. I don’t think their performance on the last two days was a fair reflection of their true potential. Give them another chance, and I believe they will pull off a more convincing result.

Vie: There’s an idea floating around, that once China and Korea switch to FPP they will become the new overlords of the PUBG scene. Do you agree with that sentiment?

JoelSophie: Yes.

Follow Joel Sophie on Twitter @JoelSophie_.

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Scoom: “EU obviously has the best track record in the Western scene”

Scoom: “EU obviously has the best track record in the Western scene”

Taking second place in the PUBG Global Invitational 2018 TPP event, Team Liquid have established themselves as a force to be reckoned with before the FPP competition.

Even before the start of the $2 million dollar tournament Team Liquid were considered to be the favorites by many. They plowed through the European qualifier, topping the list and eliminating one of the best teams in the world, FaZe Clan, on their way there. And all that considering they almost skipped the qualifier entirely.

Team Liquid had to bounce back after the not-so-great first games of the tournament. Keiron “Scoom” Prescott and his team finished sixth and eight in the first two games respectively, for a pretty subpar result. And even though they managed to secure back to back chicken dinners in games three and four, consistency allowed the Korean Gen.G Black (14th/2nd/2nd/2nd) to overtake them in the overall ranking.

Even though they couldn’t find any more chicken dinners on the second day of the competition, they showed just enough consistency to secure $160,000 and the second place finish in the overall rankings. The Korean Gen.G Gold, however, exploded and delivered the performance of their lifetime. They convincingly delivered two chicken dinners and climbed from the sixth position to take $400,000 and the title of the World Champions in PGI 2018 TPP event.

We sat down with Scoom to talk about their misfortunes in the online qualifier, their journey through the PUBG’s biggest tournament of the year, and preparation for the TPP event.

Vie: Walk me through how PGI qualifiers went for you guys. You made a lot of mistakes in the online part, you even failed to qualify, but in Leicester you were like a completely different team. What happened there? 

Scoom: Yeah, we didn’t really play our own game during the qualifiers. I don’t really know why, but we were playing new spots and doing things we normally wouldn’t. We came 6th (while Top 5 were to qualify). It wasn’t like we played bad per se, but we were meant to qualify 1st in our group I’d say. You can never be sure with the online matches and low amount of games.

Vie: So what changed?

Scoom: During the LAN/offline event we just felt like ourselves again. We felt confident. With LAN experience, playing against teams for whom it was their first LAN, it was much easier for us.

Vie: The “new” Liquid is somewhat of a PUBG superteam — four star players of their own respective teams on a single squad. Was that your goal or is it something that happened organically?

Scoom: Yeah, this team basically happened randomly. I mean when I first joined Liquid and started playing PUBG competitively my only goal was to be one of the best, if not the best team in the world. I’d work as hard as possible to achieve that.

When we started making roster changes a few months back I was super fortunate to get this team together. As I thought and of course still think, these are the best players in the scene.

Vie: With some of the biggest contenders not here, who do you think will be your biggest competitiors in the FPP event? 

Scoom: I don’t think we have any rivals per se, we are never worried about anyone else. We just focus on our game. I think NaVi and Gen.G teams are probably gonna perform the best.

Vie: So you are pretty confident?

Scoom: We are feeling really confident about PGI. We have a really good track record and feel like it’s our time. But we will treat each game as new and not let it go to our heads. We are confident in our own game and we’re not getting ahead of ourselves.

Vie: How do you feel about the perceived rivalry between EU and NA teams? Is it at all important for your team? 

Scoom: I don’t really care about regions too much, to be honest. There is always banter about EU>NA etc, but EU obviously has the best track record in the Western scene and even internationally.

Vie: What did you think of the TPP tournament?

Scoom: Including TPP is understandable because it’s pretty popular casually and especially in the Asian scene. As they even compete in it, it is what it is, even though I don’t think it’s really competitive, we gave it our all.

Vie: Did you prepare for it at all?

Scoom: We have just been playing public games to get used to it a little.

Follow Team Liquid’s Scoom on Twiiter @LiquidScoom. PUBG Global Invitational 2018 continues on Saturday, watch it live on Twitch.

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