V3 Esports Paz “Actually, it’s been a really tough year overall”

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LJL 2019 Summer Week 1

Photo by @KUJI_T

The hardest year ever.

 

LOLNINJA
Hello Paz! Thanks for taking the time to do this interview!

 

Paz
Hi, Thank you so much for this opportunity, too!

 

LOLNINJA
First of all, congratulations! You guys won the LJL Summer Finals! I’m sure you’ve been asked this a lot, but how does it feel?

 

Paz
Thank you so much, it feels really good!

Actually, it’s been a really tough year overall. It’s probably been the hardest year I’ve ever had.

We had so many new players join us. The Koreans were really obsessed with winning, and sometimes their egos were difficult to deal with.

They would make strong statements without really considering the other person’s feelings. We spent a lot of time talking about how to communicate and it got better over time, and at the end of the day our team ended up working very well together.

COVID-19 also had a significant impact. Ideally, we’d all like to go out together, have dinner and drinks, get refreshed and move on, but COVID-19 prevented us from doing that. We had to stay in the gaming house all day, even on our days off, so it was difficult figuring out how to relieve stress.

 

LOLNINJA
It was such a tough year. But I think everyone’s hard work paid off. I’m sure there was a victory celebration, but who was the happiest?

 

Paz
Due to COVID-19, we had a cozy celebration at the gaming house and we ordered delivery. I wasn’t able to join the party since I went home, but they sent me a lot of pictures of everyone having fun. Raina definitely seemed to be the most excited. Even after we won, he kept saying “I can’t believe we won…”

© 2020 Riot Games. All Rights Reserved.

 

This is how we beat DetonatioN FocusMe(DFM)

 

LOLNINJA
That’s good to hear, and I think Raina was really happy because he was crying after the win.
By the way, Paz, in your victory interview, you said that you weren’t nervous because you knew you could definitely win. Why?

 

Paz
I’ve been a professional in the LJL for a really long time, so I’ve become really good at finding the habits of my opponents.

I was never actually coached by DFM Kazu, so this is a bit of speculation, but I think that as a coach he tends to simplify winning strategies into winning patterns.

For example, when they pick lane dominant champions like Renekton or Sett, they tend to go for level 3 turret dives with their AP junglers. Another example is when they pick Nocturne, they tend to gank bot lane at level 2, even though Nocturne isn’t strong yet. They want to force their opponents to flash, get a small advantage, and buy time for Nocturne to hit level 6.

When we’ve figured out how they want to play, we can play more comfortably. It allows us to focus on laning.

With this in mind, I watched the semifinals, where DFM picked Shen and Leona. It seemed that their winning pattern this time around was creating a bot-focused game where they could win skirmishes with the pressure Shen and Leona provide.

So I concluded that the key to winning the finals was banning engage support champions like Leona, Rakan, and Nautilus, so they couldn’t as easily deliver Shen to the front lines.

When we were going over drafting strategy, we talked about how those kinds of supports were going to be problems

And if they play around bottom lane, that’s where we’re strong. We’ve been playing around them all season. So I thought we could win.

 

LOLNINJA
So you figured out DFM’s strategy beforehand based on your own experience, yeah? It sounds like you’re playing an important role in determining how your team wants to play.

 

Paz
Of course it’s not only me. Our coaches also told us that Leona was going to be important. Usually we watch LJL matches together. I think the biggest thing is that everyone is confident in speaking their mind.

 

Perfect chemistry between two coaches, HW4NG and Son.

 

LOLNINJA
It was truly a team win. For me, The combination of the two coaches, “gentle” HW4NG and “passionate” Son was pretty good.

 

Paz
First of all, Son is older, but he really communicates with the players from their perspective. He’s like an older friend to us, we’re all very close. He’s also very good at League. As a Hecarim one-trick, he’s almost always between D1 and Grand Master on the KR server. He duos with us a lot. He’s a coach who makes it easy for his players to voice their opinions. He also lives with us together at the gaming house.

HW4NG, the head coach, stays with his wife on weekends, so he’s a little bit more distant. But we don’t feel like it’s difficult to talk to him.

Son could say things to us that HW4NG couldn’t, and vice versa, HW4NG could tell us things that Son wasn’t able to.

For example, imagine the other team is stacking waves on the top side and you’re being camped. You and your teammate are talking about whether to farm and die, or to back off and stay alive. People are getting heated.Son wouldn’t take a side, because he understood what both of us were going through and he’s actually a good player. “I agree with both of you.” Then HW4NG would make an executive decision, saying “Ok. this time we’re gonna do this.”

They are the definition of the difference between a head coach and a regular coach. HW4NG is an adult, and so is Son, but Son is still growing up with us.

We were blessed to have two really good mentors. Actually they have been best friends for a long time. They talked a lot together.

Without HW4NG and Son, we wouldn’t have won and we wouldn’t have made it to the finals. I owe a lot to them for managing the mentality of the players, especially the Korean players.

© 2020 Riot Games. All Rights Reserved.

© 2020 Riot Games. All Rights Reserved.

 

What he learned from the Vietnamese team

 

LOLNINJA
I see. They are great coaches. How did you guys improve under these coaches?

 

Paz
Our bot lane did a lot of lane practice with Korean friends, trying out possible match-ups for the finals, like Ashe Pantheon vs Jhin Leona. Through these practices, they learned a lot. Here we win, there we lose, and this is how to play a kill lane.

Before the finals, Mugita (Ace) ,our mid laner, had Aria from Crest Gaming Act (CGA) help him practice with 1v1 matchups for the finals.

 

LOLNINJA
Wait, Aria helped you guys?

 

Paz
Yeah, in fact, last year, before the finals against DFM, four Koreans in LJL and another Korean top laner worked together to make a mock team and helped us with scrims. I think that’s why we were able to get their help this year. We wouldn’t be here otherwise. I am very grateful to everyone who has helped us.

 

LOLNINJA
You mentioned in your post-final interview that you had the help of a Vietnamese team as well.

 

Paz
Yeah, when we scrimmed with GAM Esports, we got to try out lane swaps. I don’t think it helped them very much, since they didn’t get to lane, but they were still very kind and helpful. I am very grateful.

We tried swapping like 10 times, and we found that sometimes it didn’t work. Really glad we noticed that. As you know, Vietnamese teams are very aggressive and creative, right? So there were a ton of other things I wouldn’t have learned without scrimming them.

 

LOLNINJA
Like what?

 

Paz
Well, you have to start fights if you want to win. I’ve been watching LPL a lot this year, and it seems like the team that’s starting fights is winning. When you’re behind, you’ll just fall further behind. But when you initiate, you’re going to be able to execute on your plan more easily. I learned a ton of things from them.

 

Archer and His metamorphosis

 

LOLNINJA
Many people have helped you guys to grow. Who do you think has grown the most?

 

Paz
Archer. Archer was a very good player on KR with his 1000LP, where he was well known as an insane mechanical player with his Kai’sa. But he had no experience in the competitive scene. So, when he first joined the team, he didn’t know how to fight with the team or control his emotions. He talked a lot with his teammates and I think he’s improved a lot mentally and technically. If he looks at where he was before, he might say “Wow that’s not me!”

 

 

LOLNINJA
Awesome. How did you find such an amazing player?

 

Paz
Bugi knew him from solo queue. Bugi brought him saying, “he’s just amazing.” So we decided to hire Archer after trying out a bunch of candidates.

 

When Japanese Players say “NO”

 

LOLNINJA
Cool. Was there a moment when you felt that the whole team had improved to a much higher level?

 

Paz
I think Japanese people have a tendency to not express their opinions very clearly. That’s the kind of thing that just didn’t mesh with the Korean players who were clearly more assertive.

But this doesn’t work for any of us, does it? That’s why we talked it over and made improvements so that the Japanese players would be more assertive and the Koreans would be receptive to their arguments.

When the Japanese players learned to say NO when they needed to, and the Korean players began to trust and accept their assertions, I felt that the whole team had grown up a lot.

 Always playing for the team

 

LOLNINJA
You guys were able to get to know each other and understand each other. As a great catalyst for your team, Paz, you are often described as an unsung, selfless hero or a counterweight lately. But I think you used to carry a lot with your Fiora and things like that. I know you have changed your playstyle for your teammates, but what do you think?

 

Paz
We have an insane Korean ADC and he definitely can carry us. That is our strength. Honestly I’m not that good at laning, and I think it would be better for me to contribute in other ways.

And a lot of compositions just don’t work if you play carries in the top lane. Like, when you play squishy champions, you’ll have a harder time getting vision when you start to fall behind. So it’s better to have a tanky champion in top from the start. My teammates and I are on the same page, so it’s more natural.

 

LOLNINJA
So you will pick a carry-type champion in the future?

 

Paz
Yeah. I’ll sometimes pick one of them now. I practice carry-type champions on a daily basis so that I can pick them at any time.

 

Curiosity

 

LOLNINJA
By the way, you are also known for your fluency in languages. Apart from Japanese, you can also understand Korean and English. When did you learn them?

 

Paz
I like to watch streams and VODs. So I learned it from them. During team meetings , when I hear Korean words and phrases that I don’t know, I want to understand, like “what is he saying about me?” So I don’t study really, I just like learning things that I didn’t know.

 

LOLNINJA
So, You don’t study to work overseas?

 

Paz
No. Just out of curiosity. I learn a lot when I want to. I don’t like it when someone tells me to do it lol.

 




 

Don’t be Scared

 

LOLNINJA
Thank You. I think this time is your first international tournament in a long time. You have a lot of international experience. Paz, what is the most important thing when you compete at worlds?

 

Paz
First of all, DON’T FREAK OUT. If you’re scared, and just farm like a kitten, your opponent will run over you at the end of the day. Is it fun to watch? No, definitely not. I don’t want to let the fans down. So, don’t be scared, do your best, play to your strengths. You must not say like “Oh man, I should have not played like that”.

If you did your best and still lost, that means your opponent was stronger, so there’s no way around it. It is where we live. You have to accept it.

Also, going to the international games means that you’re going to get that much more attention. We get way more comments, both positive and negative. Some players get their hearts broken when that happens.

But I think the only thing we can do is to believe in what we’ve done and show everyone how desperately we can fight with all our might. That way, whether we win or lose, I’m sure you will all understand.

River(Baby), Canna, Nuguri

 

LOLNINJA
I love it. It’s inspiring to see you give it your all, whether you win or lose. So is there a player you’d like to compete against in WCS?

 

Paz
First of all, River(Previously known as Baby) from PSG Talon. He was my teammate on V3 Esports. Due to COVID-19, He couldn’t compete in play-in stage, I want to meet him in the main stage.

Next, Canna from T1. Last year V3 scrimed with a T1 academy team. So I’d be happy to play them at WCS again.

Finally, Nuguri from DAMWON Gaming. Actually, When Nuguri just debuted and when he was at I Gaming Star, I scrimmed him and it was a hell of an impact! Like, ‘WTF??? I didn’t know the top lane could play like this! I’ve been a fan of Nuguri’s since then.

Of course, it doesn’t matter if we don’t make it to the main stage, but I’d love to fight one of those three!

 

LOLNINJA
I am so hyped! By the way, what was so great about Nuguri?

 

Paz
He is insanely aggressive. He doesn’t fear death and he always tests his limits. I try to think about what my opponent is thinking while I’m laning, but I don’t think Nuguri is probably thinking about that. I get the impression that he is fighting in a world that ONLY he can live in. Nobody can be like him. I think he is really cool.

I like players who play beyond my expectations. For example, when it comes to LJL players, I like Pon-san (Yutapon) and Aria. Both of them play beyond my expectations. They are really cool and fun to compete with. It makes me really happy when I beat them. So I always pay attention to Pon-san during team fights in finals lol.

 

Nuguri is a top-notch player. He always plays very far beyond my expectations!

 

LOLNINJA
Nuguri is too aggressive, so he gets ganked a lot for first blood.

 

Paz
Yeah, but he improved a lot this year though. Nuguri is said to be the same whether he is 0/0/0 or 0/3/0. He stays aggressive no matter how much he gets ganked. And then he wins the lane anyway. I was like what was that? lol

 

Dear fans and one more thing.

© 2020 Riot Games. All Rights Reserved.

LOLNINJA
I’m looking forward to the day you guys meet on the stage! Finally, do you have a message for your fans?

 

Paz
This is the second year since I joined V3 Esports, and I don’t think there were many people who supported us at first. But over the past two years, the number of people who have supported us has increased. I would like to thank you all from the bottom of my heart for your support. Thank you so much.

I would also like to thank all the fans who have supported me personally throughout the years. Thank you so much.

We still don’t know how far we’ll go in the WCS, but we promise we’ll give it our all! Thank you for your support.

And … just one more thing, if I may?

 

LOLNINJA
Sure. Go ahead!

 

Paz
To tell you the truth, it was me who chose the Japanese players for this year’s V3 Esports, Mugita (Ace) and Raina. V3 Esports didn’t have a lot of expertise in team management, so they asked for my help, especially in terms of player acquisition. Without them, we couldn’t make it. I feel awkward telling them this in person, so I’ll just tell them here.

 

Thank you so much!

 

 

 

管理忍

I will support them as much as I can gozaru.

コメント

  1. Naruhodo yokuwakatta de gozaru!

    3
  2. u can saying gozaru btw its not fitting

  3. kokowa eigo shibari desuka

  4. TL;DW
    Zerost Saikyou!

  5. nihonngo ha doko desuka ?

  6. gozaru.

  7. 誰かVediusにこのリンク送ってあげて

    1
  8. 訳せや!って思ったら訳してあったでござる

  9. hmm,naruhodo yoku wakaruyo.

  10. ここで心配しなくても英語圏のLJLファンには管理人やアメリカ人アナリストの彼がこの記事を紹介してるでござろう

  11. Riot generously allowed us to use their images so I putted some of them from their instagram.

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