Reigning Quake world champion and a member of Natus Vincere Apex Legends squad, Nikita “clawz” Marchinsky talked about his esports career, opinion on Apex Legends, his future with Quake and much more.
The Belarusian player joined Natus Vincere earlier this year together with another Quake legend, Alexey “cypher” Yanushevsky. Since then the two players had their debut at a LAN tournament for Apex Legends, albeit separately. And even more recently, they announced the newest member of the squad — Artem “pkmk” Nechaev.
At TwitchCon Europe, clawz finished 3rd at the TwitchCon Europe Showdown 2019 – Qualifier 2 behind NRG esports, but bombed out of the grand finals, finishing 15th.
Switching from an arena shooter to a battle royale game has been a big change for the 21-year-old, the player confirmed in a Natus Vincere interview.
Did the invitation to Natus Vincere surprise you? What emotions did you experience immediately after you received a formal offer to be under the yellow-black banner?
The offer really was a pleasant surprise, and the emotions were appropriate. And if before that there was a goal to get into such a large organization, now I’m going to the next difficult goal — to defend the team’s colors as long as possible and make a feasible contribution to its development.
Have you played Overwatch, PUBG, Fortnite? How’s that coming along?
I played Overwatch for about a year, immediately from the beta test. However, I decided to leave the discipline, as I received information about the new Quake. I tried PUBG and did not like it. The plans were to devote a lot of time to Fortnite, but, again, Apex Legends popped up.
If Quake championships are held this year, will you participate in them?
Yes, I will, if there is no conflict with the LANs with Apex Legends.
How did the championship in Quake disciplines affect your life? Have you become famous in your own country?
After two years it came to me, what I have achieved and how much I won — everything happened so rapidly. Life has become quieter, but the thirst to win only intensified. I’m not a celebrity, but they do sometimes recognize me on the streets.
What does Quake need to become a competitive discipline? Or, in your opinion, the game can no longer be resurrected?
Quake need some interesting and fun game mode for casuals, in my opinion. The game will just not survive if there is only one duel mode in it. If you want — have fun and play with friends in something interesting. If you want — try yourself in the competitive part of the game.
And of course, the competitive part itself should be well and interestingly done for the audience. Or maybe the game just lacked a strong advertisement. But as for me, it’s not as interesting to play a duel, as for many others.
In September 2018, you said that you were waiting for the Battle Royale in the spirit of Quake. Does Apex fall under that criteria?
In general, yes. I just wanted to see what it would look like in the Quake universe. Plus, maybe Quake would be carried away by more people. Apex Legends is very dynamic, and it is interesting to find out how dynamic Quake would turn out to be, with the mechanics of strafes and rocket jumps. And also — how the end game scenarios would look like.
Initially, you and cYpheR played along with COOLLERZ. Why did your paths diverge?
To a greater extent due to the fact that Anton [COOLLERZ] and I did not get along.
The TwitchCon tournament was the first for you under the NAVI flag. How can you rate this event?
TwitchCon is a wonderful entertainment event that took place in the equally wonderful city of Berlin. Emotions left extremely positive: everything was prepared and done at the highest level.
What kind of tournament format do you like: play public games and compare results (ESL), or face all opponents in one lobby (TwitchCon)? What are the pros and cons of each mode?
Playing in public lobbies — is a big no. The element of luck is much more difficult to neutralize at the expense of the personal and team level of play, except maybe it is better for the sake of beauty, they will let you run and shoot off the heads with a “Wingman”.
Anyway, all serious tournaments will be held with the densest set of participants — and they are much more important. However, at times there is enough entertainment too. Personally, I really enjoyed playing and watching everything in the custom lobby at TwitchCon.
One of the features of TwitchCon is that the team that killed the leader received a cash prize. Should the organizers of the competition take a better look at this format?
Again, I approve of this if the bounty goes only as a bonus. This is too random, and therefore it’s not for esports.
At Twitch Rivals there was a case when one of the teams won, being outside the zone, using first aid kits. Do game developers need to increase the zone damage?
I think you should not increase the damage from the zone, while the rule in the League prohibits healing and waiting in the zone.
Apex Legends is still a young discipline. What does it need first of all for the development of the professional scene?
More content, more patches, more tournaments. More feedback.
Do you think that the game itself is developing too slowly? Even the long-awaited “Battle Pass” turned out to be different from what was expected.
At the moment, this feeling prevails. “Battle Pass” really didn’t turn out to be the best, but, as the creators of the game said, they are already working on it. And in general, the first patch came out fairly quickly, because after all they did not expect such a hype around their game and now they are trying to make the least amount of mistakes.
What do you need as a player, primarily to maintain interest in the game? Perhaps a new map, weapons or characters?
Tournaments are most important to me. And various new content to relax and stream the public games.
Duo, solo — are you waiting for any of these modes in the game?
I’m not, given the fact that there are enough teams staffed, it would be maybe interesting to look at the solo mode. As well as, for those who have no desire to play with randoms.
What, in your understanding, should be matchmaking in a game? Would you agree to wait longer for the start of matches to play against stronger players?
I do not know, it all depends on how you look at this question. On the one hand, this is fun and some kind of entertainment for the player and the same viewers. On the other hand, of course, I would like the level as a whole to be higher, but this is probably more suitable for a solo mode.
Watching one level of play is sometimes tiring. In the end, pubs are for to quickly find and play against completely random people. Custom Lobby for those who want to work further on themselves.
What can you say about weapons? What needs to be buffed or nerfed?
Generally, at the moment, everything is more or less balanced, except that it is necessary to slightly change the chances of the drop rates and a number of certain items. So that, for example, in three neighboring houses there were four Mozambique and nothing but them.
Are you satisfied with the balance of the characters?
One way or another, there will be a meta of three or four of the most powerful characters. The same Wraith, it seems to me, for the time being, she will be for a while in a competitive meta, while the Bloodhound is unlikely to get there soon if nothing changes. Metas will just shift.
You are known as a first-class Wraith player. Why did you choose this character?
Wraith is suitable for those who love the aggressive style of the game, as it gives the right to make mistakes, and sometimes even a few mistakes, which, in turn, makes it possible to carry out more beautiful and difficult moments.
In the last patch, Wingman was nerfed, reducing the number of rounds in the clip. Nevertheless, you continue to use these weapons. Is the nerf too small, or is the weapon too powerful?
There is an additional motivation to hit even more. The weapon is still very strong, it is just sometimes preferred to use covers more often. And if you find any clip attachments, then this is still the same Wingman. Again, this is a very powerful weapon against those who aim with the help of the zoom, since their mobility is extremely reduced, so it makes it easier to hit with a Wingman.
How can you make the infamous Mozambique useful?
Mozambique in both hands. It would be a solid meme.
Share with newcomers what you need to do in order to win? Jumping down into small villages, loot, and then go into battle? Or jump immediately to the hot zone — “Skull”, “Air Base”, “Artillery”?
Play, deploy, die, deploy, kill, die. Gain as much experience as possible. Apex is a dynamic game, in it, the significance of the combat squad, in my opinion, is higher than in other games, or at least plays an important role. And this skill is not just the ability to accurately aim at the enemy.
Many hours of practice is really the most important step to success. Nevertheless, backing it up with the quality of the play is advisable. With the acquisition of the necessary qualities, it will be possible to maximize the chances of winning in most situations.