Most of the players of MAD Lions’ two-split winning roster look confused. Core pieces like İrfan Berk "Armut" Tükek and Norman "Kaiser" Kaiser don’t look suited for the current meta. Judging by their team performance, Javier "Elyoya" Prades Batalla has not had a successful transition to the main shotcaller. And Matyáš "Carzzy" Orság has not been the top three European AD carry that Team Vitality was hoping for.
Then there’s Marek "Humanoid" Brázd. It’s been business as usual since he’s joined Fnatic — having some of the best performances of any player in the LEC. He’s fit into Fnatic’s system like a glove, and has helped them become one of the front runners to win the LEC. Inven Global spoke with Humanoid, to discuss his thoughts on Fnatic’s team dynamic, his thoughts on MAD’s failures, and what teams are most intimidating coming into playoffs.
One of the strengths of MAD last year was your teamfighting ability. What is it like teamfighting with this roster compared with MAD?
Team fights are usually about personal skill. So there's not really that much you can do as a team to win team fights, because it just depends on mechanics a lot. Which is I guess why we are winning a lot of team fights. We were pretty good at it in MAD as well, so l don't think we are doing anything different in that sense.
How has Razork compared to Elyoya?
Elyoya, it took him a few weeks or maybe months to become actually really good and to be able to play competitive, because it was his first time. And Razork had already played in the LEC before, so it was easier from the start. I think right now they are pretty similar playstyle-wise.
Obviously, international competition is somewhat on the horizon. With Fnatic one of the contenders to play in MSI, how do you think Fnatic’s style compares with MAD last year in playing top Eastern teams?
I think our style is a bit more aggressive in the early game. And later in the game, it's pretty similar. I think that's the only difference. And against the Asian teams, I guess we will have to see how strong they are, because the top teams from China and Korea are usually really strong. So yeah, I don't really know how much of a chance I would give us. But I think we for sure have some chance to win.
You stated last year that you didn’t think LEC teams knew how to play past 20 minutes. Half a year later, is this still the case?
Yeah, I think no team has an idea how to rotate around the map past 15 minutes. And usually, it's pretty free to gain really big advantages, unless you're pretty far behind. But I think if we are even, it's pretty easy for us to win the game from like 15-20 minutes.
Do you think that's going to be a problem when it comes time for international play?
I think for the other teams, yeah, for sure. But I think we are pretty good at that. I think we are doing it pretty well. So I wouldn't say it would be a problem for us.
Fnatic's the only team that can play well past 20 minutes?
I would say so in Europe, yeah.
What other problems do you see in European play right now?
I'm not really sure. I can't really say that there's one thing. I think there are a lot of teams in the league that are just really bad and playing against them is not really useful practice. The top 4 teams are decent but in the other regions there are like eight to 10 teams that are pretty good and are good to play against, and you learn something from playing against them. But here it's just you can only play against three other teams to actually learn. I think that is one thing that is pretty bad for the region.
In an interview last year, you talked about how G2 was the best team in Europe and they had by far the best players across the board. When you look at a team like Rogue, is it the same?
I think with Rogue, they always historically just did well in the regular season. And they usually just practice one style for the entire split and they just play it all the time and just win games in the best-of-1s. But yeah, in the last two playoffs, they just did way worse in the best-of-5s than the best-of-1s. I think that's why people don't really consider them that good.
I'm expecting them to do way worse in playoffs. Just like even last year, they just did really bad in playoffs. After being first place for the entire splits. I'm expecting them to look the same.
Even with all the different players on it?
Yeah, I mean, it looks like they still have the same issues that they had.
Who would you expect to meet in the finals for playoffs?
I would say probably G2. Yeah, I think they have the best chance.
Vitality have been gassing themselves up quite a bit for playoffs. You don't think they have a good shot?
I think Vitality are just not really doing that well. I think they have had a lot of trouble, they don't really look clean in any of the games that they've played. So, yeah, I think they are not really that good.
In-game, in many ways, MAD Lions played around you. Do you think Fnatic are doing the same, or how have you had to adjust your playstyle to the team?
Yes, I would expect them to be a bit higher in the standings. I didn't expect them to be like top 3, but I thought they'd be like top 6. Somewhere around the 5-6th spot. But yeah, I think they got a bit unlucky in some of the games, I think they still deserve to be in playoffs.
What would you say the biggest issues for them are at the moment?
It's hard to say. I think, since they have two new players, it takes them a while to actually adjust to playing on LEC, on stage. And that just comes with time. I think they will do way better next split.
At the beginning of the season, you complained that the competitive meta was very boring. Having played a full split, do you think it's improved at all?
I think the competitive meta for mid lane is basically exactly the same as it was at the start of the split and as it was last year as well. So I honestly think that literally nothing changed at all.
I write. I rap. I run. That’s pretty much it.