From being a national level swimmer in Australia to becoming one of the staple names in the League of Legends content creator game, Drew “Midbeast” Timbs has done it all. In his journey as a content creator, he reaches out to his audience through his analysis of pro play and solo queue. However, his passion for LoL lies beyond just grinding content.
Midbeast sat down with Inven Global to talk about his journey, the removal of the import rule in the LCS, and his goals for 2021. Through the interview, I came to quickly realize just how much Drew wants the Oceanic region to succeed, and showed how his passion lies beyond just gameplay analysis.
Can you please introduce yourself to all our readers at home?
Hey I’m Drew Timbs! I go by the name “Midbeast” online and I’m passionate about making league of legends content for my Youtube channel and Twitch stream.
A majority of your content involves spectating various pros/challenger players from all around the world and analyzing their game play. Which aspects of that particular content appealed to you the most?
When I first started the journey to becoming a better player in 2013, I was roughly silver in rank and grinded hundreds of games with no progress. It got me thinking — surely there’s a better way at improving then this… So I started looking up pro player VODS on YouTube. As I watched these games, I wasn’t sure what I was looking for, and struggled to keep up with the high level of play. I wished there was somebody in the background, just guiding me what’s happening and why it was happening so that I could consume the content more efficiently.
Enter me in 2016, after finally reaching Challenger, I decided to start a YouTube channel and Twitch stream so I could do exactly that; break down high level play in simple terms and easy to digest concepts.
You’ve been a well-known Dopa fan for years. What aspects of his gameplay makes him very special in your books?
It’s no secret I’m obsessed with Dopa! From the time I first watched him play, a mysterious mid laner that supposedly was better than Faker, I was hooked. He didn’t play like the others, it seemed as though he had solved an unsolvable game. He played with a certain style, a consistency that was as close to a robot as a human could get. It was fascinating. Since then, I’ve always kept up to date with his strategies and games. I document them on my YouTube channel, attempting to help myself and others improve, I break down and analyse his games.
Your roots in your esports journey are closely knitted with the OPL. How did you react to the OPL shutting down?
I was surprised, honestly. I always thought Riot Games would finance a league for each region, regardless of monetary gain. It was a big shame but I’m happy the ESL and Guinevere Capital came through to create the new LCO and give aspiring oceanic players a home.
I’ve watched you co-stream the LCO (League of Legends Circuit Oceania). With so many OCE pro players now playing in other regions, how do you rate the current skill level of the league, when compared to the major 4 regions (LCK, LPL, LEC, LCS)?
Like any minor region, we struggle to field a strong league. While I think some of the top teams have potential, it’s hard to compete with these larger leagues. You have to understand that a large number of these players are making close to minimum wage, leading many to work second jobs, or attend university in their off-time.
Compare this with huge budgets and gaming houses of the larger leagues, it’s hard to expect the same level of skill from our players and league. In saying that, there still are some exceptionally talented players in the region and if given the opportunity could do major damage in the major leagues.
Are there any players in the LCO that you predict will do well in the future? Who are your top 3 picks that you think have the potential to do well in other regions?
Some of the players that I think could easily be imported next year:
1) PCE Violet: Explosive young AD, reminds me of C9 K1ng, could easily shape up to be top 3 ADC in the LCS following the footsteps of FBI/Lost/Raes/King
2) PGG Pabu: Can easily slot into any roster and be the difference maker. Very knowledgeable about the game, would be a huge asset to any organisation with draft/comms and doesn’t lack in the micro/macro department.
3) PCE Aladoric: Huge potential player, naturally gifted and can pair up with any AD making them a huge threat.
Recently, it was revealed that some LCS team owners have requested Riot Games for the removal of the import rule. Considering how players from Oceania are no longer considered imports in the LCS, what are your thoughts on the topic?
It’s a hard one for me. By making OCE players not considered imports, it allowed the path for our league to filter through our best players to NA to help fill their talent pool to compete with the LEC/LCK/LPL. If this import rule is implemented globally, our players would now be competing with EU/KR/LPL talent and would struggle to have the same opportunity to prove themselves.
But on the other hand, I also think why only OCE? Why should our region be the only to benefit the rewards of not being considered imports? What about Brazil/Japan/other minor regions... it’s a tough topic and I’m not sure if the league would be better or worse off without the import rule. I do know that the league would lose its identity as NA. Whether that’s a good or bad thing however, I’m not sure.
As someone that spectates a lot of solo queue, are there any solo queue-exclusive mid lane champions (i.e. Talon, Katarina) that have the potential to make it into the competitive meta?
Definitely! There are so many champions that have the potential to be drafted in competitive, but it doesn’t seem like many teams have the balls to pull them out. I think right now, too many immobile mages are being blind picked such as Syndra/Ori/Azir/Viktor/Zoe/TF. If you really want to spice things up, champions that can be picked to exploit this would be Ahri, Nocturne mid (Stridebreaker), Fizz, and Qiyana.
In the pre-COVID era, I remember you travelling around the world to play on different servers. Once travel restrictions are lifted, which countries are you looking to travel the most, and why? (Are you looking to come back to Korea once again?)
YES! One server I’m really looking forward to is the Chinese super server. It seems extremely high level and fast paced which I love. I’ll definitely return to Korea and EUW servers in the future, but it obviously just depends when Covid restrictions lift.
Goals in 2021?
Overall, I want to continue making better and better content. League is something I genuinely enjoy and have a passion for, so I want to keep contributing as much as possible. Also, I’m hoping to achieve rank 1 in OCE SoloQ. I’ve hit top 10 before, but I would love to take it a little more seriously and hit that number 1 spot before I travel anywhere again.
Lastly, are there any special shoutouts that you want to make, whether it’s to your friends, family, and/or fans?
Big shoutout to everybody that doubted me over the years. Definitely helped influence me to keep up the grind and never stop trying to improve my content and gameplay.
Striving for perfection to achieve excellence in esports