Performing all across the globe, Perkz has come back to North America to claim his dominance over the NA teams.
With EU in the lead, Rift Rivals seems to be headed in favor towards the Europeans. But, as we know about League of Legends, anything can change. Although G2 seemed to have difficulty in closing out games, Perkz explained that EU is definitely ahead of NA and winning it would be easy.
After day 1 of Rift Rivals, we sat down with Perkz to discuss his take on meta perspectives of NA and EU, Zven and Mithy, and NA solo q.
¤ In the last interview with you, you mentioned that your mental was going to explode if you came to NA. Here you are now. How is your mental so far?
I played a decent amount of solo q. But at the end of the day around 8-9pm, I am still jet-lagged. I get really tired, and I can’t hold it in anymore. The solo q gets to me very fast. NA solo q is so much worse than EU solo q. It is not a very efficient practice.
¤ The ping must also be an issue. In EU, I have heard the ping is usually 20-30. In LA, the ping is 60-70.
Yeah, the ping is the biggest issue. The ping is 60 here and in EU it is 30. There is an extreme difference. The difference between 7 ping and 30 ping is a lot less compared to that of 30 ping to 60 ping. It is really hard to practice.
¤ Other than the ping and solo q, what have you liked about coming to LA?
First of all, I love it how we are traveling as a team. This is our second team travel ever since Copenhagen. I get to see Mithy and Zven almost every day. I was able to go to the TSM and C9 house. It is so nice to see my old teammates. We all went to Santa Monica Pier and ate ice cream. I saw a bunch of LA. We went to some restaurants as well. I really like the food and weather here.
¤ What is your take on how your former teammates transitioning from region to region? Do you think they like it here?
My take on the players that came to NA (Zven and Mithy) is that they probably like it here because it is nice. Good weather, good team infrastructure, and good food. Despite all this, I am sure they all miss EU. This is because EU is a lot better and EU solo q is a lot better. As a pro player, you must spam a lot of solo q in order to get better. That is the whole point. I believe it is true that once you go to NA, you cannot get better than what you were. This is mostly because of the solo q. There is no competitiveness. Only playing for fun. Streamers and stuff.
In the end, this makes teams weaker because the players are, themselves, weaker. I feel bad for Zven and Mithy.
¤ Talking a bit about Rift Rivals, do you think EU is vastly ahead of NA this year?
I don’t think EU is THAT ahead of NA, but EU is definitely ahead. We have more creativity and aggressive plays than NA. We are better at closing out the games. Even though we weren’t able to close out some of our games (laughs). That was really bad. As long as our team and Fnatic sharpen up our play, I believe EU can easily take over NA.
¤ Why do you think EU is more creative and out there regarding the meta compared to NA? EU was the first region to implement Heimer-Fiddle and Kai’Sa with 3 supports.
I don’t really know actually. It is just how it is I guess. The sky is blue...airplanes can fly... EU players are better than NA players. I’m not sure, you know? It just comes down to this. EU players have better mechanics and bigger drive to win. Because of this, we actively try to find avenues we can win the game with. NA just keeps playing standard. However, this might all change in the future. But as of this moment, this was how it was for the last couple of weeks. This is why EU is coming out on top. Splyce is not but all the other EU teams are.
It all depends. How fast will NA adapt? Right now, they are learning about our style. NA is currently learning and adapting. We will just have to see about it.
¤ Is it better to find a new way to win that fits your region/team or is it better to follow what everyone else is doing?
My team in the past, we literally only followed Korea. Till season 5, EU was actually ahead of everyone else. We would pick Ivern and unique team comps. I came to the conclusion that doing whatever is best for the team and works for our team is the best. This is how you win most of your games. You cannot expect to be SKT in peak form and win season 5,6, and 7. You shouldn’t play like a team that is doing well somewhere else. Just pick what you think is best and win. This is how I feel right now.
¤ Hypothetically if you were an NA coach, what would you implement to your team so that they can make it to Worlds?
Basically, it is just playing to your strengths. This is how Team Liquid won. They play to their strengths which is their bottom. TL’s bot and jungle play well together. This is how they won their game against Splyce. So overall, you need to make sure you play to your strengths. That’s it.
¤ Is there any mid laner that you saw and thought “Wow, this guy is something else”?
I don’t really have that with anyone. I have played against very talented teams and players in my past. Hence, I am used to going up against good players. There isn’t anyone that really is outstanding to me. If I was watching MSI, I would say Caps right? He was the best mid laner at MSI. But right now in this split, I don’t think there is anyone who I think as “Wow, this guy is something else”.
¤ Caps has been called the best mid laner at MSI. On the other hand, you have also been called the best mid laner in EU. What do you think will settle this debate?
Since both of us will say ‘I am the best’, it is very difficult for us to say. I think we push each other to be better. Caps wants to be better than me, and I want to be better than him. It comes down to team play. The debate will be decided on which team is better than who. This way you can clearly say ‘Oh, this guy is clearly better than that guy.’. If Fnatic wins against G2, everyone will think Caps is better than me. If G2 wins against Fnatic, everyone will think I am better than Caps.
If I die in lane or lose early game, but if I win, I’ll still be better than him (laughs). I made my team win.
¤ What was going through your mind after Worlds last year?
In some way, I was sad that we were splitting up. But looking from another perspective, I knew it was the best thing that could ever happen to me. It made me really grow so much in a short amount of time. It helped me accept the new positions. I am kind of finding balance on my new place on the team and my old place. So, I am being more of a joking and supportive type of person now. More jokingly than I was last split. Last split, I really tried helping my team learn the game the way I learned it in G2. I was really excited about how I could step into new challenges this year.
¤ Lastly, is there anything you want to say to your NA and EU fans watching Rift Rivals?
There is not much more to say than thank you. I want to always thank you guys for the support. The reason why we do what we do is to get the support from the fans that like to follow me. I want to make sure that my fans are proud of me, and I am proud of myself. What I always look for is to win. This is why G2 has been at the top for so long. I will keep working on that goal, to be the best. You guys can always count on me.