During Rift Rivals, the team with the most formidable performance is undoubtedly G2. With winning 3 games out of 3, G2 is taking NA for a spin.
We met with G2’s talented support, Wadid. With a Busan accent, Wadid answered our questions with freshness. He had an extremely friendly character. Despite being our first time meeting with him, Wadid’s character allowed nothing short of a great interview.
Wadid, without filter, explained his team/Perkz’s history and his initial feelings with NA.
¤ How does it feel to participate in Rift Rivals?
For me, this is my first ever international event. In addition to this, it means a lot to me that I am representing EU. I am trying my best to beat NA. Within the 3 top EU teams, my team is the only team that uses a Korean player. This gives me even more reason to show a good performance.
¤ Was it not difficult to live in a foreign country alone?
When I first came to EU last year with ROCCAT, it was difficult. Since I have no reason to use English in Korea, language was a huge issue for me. Luckily for me, I met fantastic teammates that helped me adjust a lot better. Once I began talking to my team, I was not lonely at all. They all became my true friends. Because I don’t dislike any kinds of food, I don’t have any issues now.
¤ You are on the same team as one of the best EU players. How was living with Perkz? How was he different from others?
Although he is young, Perkz has in-depth comprehension and worries constantly. He not only thinks about himself but also about his team as well. Despite being at a young age, Perkz has more experience than any other professional player. He went to Worlds multiple times and even has a lot of experiences in winning. In regards to these aspects, I still have a lot to learn from Perkz.
Come to think of it, Perkz has given me help and I too have given him help. It is not only myself but also the whole team that is extremely close to one another. Because of this, we easily help each other out.
¤ What sort of help have you received?
The help that I get relates to inside the game. Since I can get information easily from Korea, I introduce a lot of it to Perkz. In exchange, Perkz gives me plentiful insight into team experience. He is a veteran.
¤ It seems that Perkz looks a lot different from his previous self.
To be honest, I had a bit of prejudice on Perkz before joining the team (laughs). Once joining the team, I realized he had deep thoughts and practices harder than anyone else.
¤ Is there a significant cultural difference between Korean game organizations and European ones?
Comparing my time in SBENU, EU’s culture is definitely different. Whenever we finish a game and start feedback, the entire team and coaching staff actively participate. Everyone has an open mind. While I was in a Korean team, it was more towards players listening to what the coach was saying.
There seems to be pros and cons for both cultures. If a coach is extremely talented, it is beneficial for the players to follow off what the coach insists on. There is a saying ‘Too many cooks can spoil the broth’. Since coaches in Korea are very talented, it is the most optimal to not waste our time listening to players talk.
Despite this, EU has one significant advantage. Since there is a variety of discussions available, the possibilities are endless. Because our team values feedback so heavily, it usually takes the same amount of time to practice and give feedback.
¤ We heard it is your first time in NA. Was there anything you found interesting?
Since this is the home of League, it felt like the food, facilities, and the atmosphere was incredible. In n Out was really good. I get the feeling that I am going to gain a lot of weight staying here.
¤ Have you traveled around LA?
To be honest, we flew in on Sunday. I have been trying to adjust to jet-lag and spent my time practicing. Because Rift Rivals is held dead center of the split, I can’t fully relax. I am constantly improving my pace. Right after Rift Rivals, we have an important match against Misfits. Because both teams are 6 wins and 0 losses, I am focusing a lot of my attention on that game as well.
¤ Your schedule seems like hell.
The schedule is hard but going to different places to play and meet the fans is fun. Also, I think it is even more enjoyable because we are winning.
¤ How does it feel after playing against NA teams?
We did play against NA multiple teams. I am certain that compared to EU teams overall, NA is definitely worse. Team Liquid was the only team that did fine. Team Liquid only throws as a team and not individually. It is different from any other NA team.
Team Liquid practices as if they are playing a live game on stage. For example, if they think the enemy jungle is on the bottom side, the bot duo doesn't do any damage trades. In these sort of aspects, Team Liquid focuses the most when practicing. In regards to the other teams, it was no different from playing a solo q game (laughs).
¤ Wasn’t this your first time in NA solo q? How was it?
It was so hard (laughs). First of all, the internet is terrible. While EU has 20 ping, NA seemed to have 60~70 ping. As soon as I clicked my mouse, I felt it. I thought to myself 'The internet lag is real'. In Korea, ping in Seoul is 6~7. Busan is around 12 from what I remember. There is seriously a huge difference. I used to say "NA food and weather is so good". Because of NA solo q, my feelings to come back have disappeared (laughs). I simply cannot enjoy the game.
While the internet is an issue, the users are so funny. A few games, it was really impossible to win (laughs). Currently, our top laner had lost so much solo q in NA that his mental is gone. Although my mental is okay because I haven’t lost much yet, it is extremely hard even when I do win (laughs).
¤ Did you also meet a lot of pros in solo q?
I met them a few times. The pros are definitely better. To be honest, I want to meet NA streamers. They are actually very entertaining. Even though Sneaky is not a streamer, I think he is entertaining. I want to meet Sneaky.
¤ You were famous in Korea for your Bard.
I wrote a Bard guide on Inven and got famous. Back then, I wasn’t preparing to be pro. I just played a few thousand games on Bard. When I went to go look at Bard guides on Inven, some guides weren’t even done properly. I saw a guy who played a few games on Bard and called his guide 'Bard Basics'. I got so pissed off that I wrote my own guide.
It has been so long since I played Bard. Since Bard is such a bad champion now, I can’t afford to play him. Now that I am a pro, I have no choice but to practice and play good champions.
¤ You talked a little bit about Team Liquid earlier. Could you go more into detail?
Since their playstyle is fairly obvious, it is easy for us to prepare against them. Even when asking other teams, they say Impact is strong on tank champions and they try to make plays through their strong bot lane. I think it is quintessential for TL to grab a lead through their bot lane.
However, for our team, we can implement gold funneling and bruiser/mages in the bot lane. It is very difficult for us to go into the game with a losing draft. Since AP casters are so strong in the bot lane, I think we will have the upper hand if the opponent decides on using a standard ADC. In other words, the opposing bot lane won’t be able to create a lead against us.
I would like to think TL might have a chance if they picked a mage in the bot lane and did well. We have concluded that mages are a lot stronger than standard picks such as Ezreal or Kai’Sa.
¤ NA believes the same, but some teams are unable to due to their lack of mastery.
Hjarnan is a very unique player. He is famous for his Heimer and Singed one trick in solo q. I believe he has put over a few hundred games on them. When this meta first started, he asked if Heimer bot was okay to use. After using it, Heimer seemed incredibly strong. Thanks to Hjarnan, we go into picks/bans with the upper hand.
¤ Is there anything you want to particularly say?
To my knowledge, my name is not known at all in Korea. I want to go to Worlds in Korea and let people know my name.
¤ Do you ever want to play in Korea?
I’m not sure. During Spring, each member played their own style from their former teams. Our synergy was bad. However now, I believe we are a very strong team. I want to see how far we can go.