B1ad3: "Gambit is the underdog"
At the next major FlipSid3 are hoping to break their run of four group stage exits at majors after nearly a year and a half.
Read below to see what Andrey "B1ad3" Gorodenskiy's point of view on all things MLG Columbus is:
How have you been preparing for MLG Columbus? Was there a bootcamp prior to the major or have you only been practising online? Is there anything you focused on specifically?
No bootcamp. We coudn't find any bootcamp place in Columbus. Therefore we were playing online only, we got only three fully practice days, without any official matches. Not so much, we would prefer much more. Specifically we focused on our teamplay, communication and midround decisions. There are also some new tactical features that we prepared.
Recently teams have stopped bootcamping prior to big events or only do it for short periods of time, mostly for less than a week, why do you think that is? Is it as important nowadays as it used to be? What are the pros and cons for your team?
In my opinion a proper bootcamp is a very important element of preparation. Nowadays a lot of players get bored and annoyed by each other while bootcamping, for most of them the whole process becomes a daily routine and it is depressing, to some extent. But at the end of the day, it's all about the attitude, team spirit and professionalism.
Most CS:GO teams aren't working hard enough, says FlipSid3's in-game leader
There are many tournaments going on nowadays, usually at least two significant ones per month, does that make it hard for teams to be able to adapt and improve their gameplay significantly? Could it be part of the reason why CS:GO has become more based on individual plays rather than tactics?
It's true that there are many tournaments. It's kind of a problem for a lot of teams but at the same time it creates an extremely competitive enviroment. Those who work harder than others eventually reap the benefits. There is also a reason why some teams' playstyle is mostly based on their individual plays rather than tactics and it is entirely individual. Practice time is very hard to come by. I can say that 85% of top 30 CS:GO teams are still not woking hard enough compared to the other sports professionals. It seems as if they are not improving at all. Also they are not using the full potential of the game which has teamplay as the main root.
Do you feel comfortable with the group that has been assigned to you? Can you go through each of the possible match-ups (NiP, Luminosity, mousesports) and tell us how you should fare in them?
We are fine with this group, all teams are beatable in my opinion. All of them have flaws that can be exploited. We just need to come up with a proper gameplan and execute it without mistakes. I am personally very excited and look forward to our matches. Speaking about the opponents: NiP is a legendary team with very skilled players, but at this moment they are still not back at the level they were at before. It's not as legendary as it was. Mousesports have crazy aimers like NiKo and Nex, but they are still not a complete team, yet not a tier1 echelon. They have a lot stuff to improve and I am very curious about how they will look at the major. Luminosity is very good at the moment, I was surprised when they lost Katowice 2016 and they are the toughest opponent in our group. But still they have some weak spots.
Could there be a better system of seeding other than based on the last major and the qualifier? Current format practically ignores all competitions taking place in between the majors, which is five months' worth of events in this case.
Current format is fine, but they should add some clauses to it. Like if the period between the majors is more than 3 month, or the team has made any lineup changes etc.
What expectations and goals have you set for yourselves at this event? What placing would you be satisfied with and what would be unacceptable?
We expect to pass the groupstage, I won't say that it's top 8 or bust because all teams are extremely talented in our group.
With how different teams have stepped up lately (LG and Na`Vi especially) and others are stagnating or even dropping off, who do you have as favourites to make the top four? And, on the other hand, is there an underdog who could surpass fans' expectations?
LG, Fnatic, Astralis and Na`Vi are expected to be in the top 4 but I have a feeling that this major will bring a lot of surprises. G2 will surprise. Gambit is the obvious underdog.
B1ad3 believes group A is passable
Can anyone stop this seemingly unbeatable fnatic lineup (barring group stage losses), which has won the last six tournaments they attended? If so, who? How do you see your own chances against what has become one of the greatest teams of all-time should you meet them?
It's harder to stay on the mountain than to climb it. Fnatic have won the last six tournaments they attented but a major isn't on that list. Obviously they must be extremely motivated because of that and I have a feeling that to win this major Fnatic will have to play much better than they ever have. This is their toughest test. Our own chances against Fnatic in BO3 are not so great but I believe that any opponent is beatable. No matter what there is always a chance to win against anyone if you are prepared and are confident.
There will be four American teams in attendance (SPLYCE, CLG, Liquid and Cloud9), more than ever, is this the time to shine for North America? Which of them have the biggest chance to advance to playoffs and possibly upset one of the big names?
I think none of them will advance to playoffs but CLG has the biggest chance. This is the best chance any NA team has ever had and they are capable of doing it. Liquid can surprise but only if s1mple will perfom on the godlike level. He needs to show up for his team in a big way as they did for him in the qualifier.
Valve implemented the new timers shortly after the previous major - now that we have seen almost three months of competition with them, how do you think they affect each of the sides and the overall balance? Do you believe Valve achieved what they wanted to with the change?
Changing timers was a very good idea. I think Valve achieved what they wanted to. They should do something like this after each major. It's kind of a reboot for the competitive scene. Also, they should add one new map after each major, considering that we have only 3 majors per year. Timers affect a lot, now T side is much stronger, with a proper T approach CT have really low chances unless they gamble.
In an interview at the main qualifier, B1ad3 admitted Shara was getting nervous on LAN. Is it getting better with each tournament you attend? Could it become an issue again at a major stage, where the pressure is bigger than usual?
Shara's main feature is that he is not afraid of any opponent. He does not get nervous on LAN. The anxiety of the competitive process makes him play with too much energy sometimes, or he is thinking too much. Therefore he makes untypical moves. I believe it's because he didn't play for any professional team in CSGO before F3, but I do not think that the MLG major will be a bigger pressure for him.
You can go through the following list for our previous pre-event interviews in case you missed any: