OK, so going back in time you guys played with chilly for a couple of months in that post b1am / sicarri phase. What happened with chilly? How come it didn’t work out?
emongg: Chilly was just a really good friend of ours who we got to play Overwatch when we were in the middle of figuring out who we wanted to pick up. Rob always wanted to play support but when we were initially looking for a new dps there really wasn’t an established ranked leaderboard yet so we just asked him to play and see how it went. He was a great teammate we just always knew rob wanted to support.
So did you always know that rob-wiz wasn’t destined to play DPS in the long run or was it more an experiment that didn’t work out?
e: Experiment that didn’t work out I would say.
So now rob switches back to support, Michael3D moves from flex to the tank role that was formerly held by juv3nile and you are now filling the flex role?
e: Yeah we just shifted every around. I felt that it would be way easier to find two new dps from ranked and let them develop chemistry rather than bringing in 2 various roles. I enjoy the flex role a lot more too.
With the current roles then are you still experimenting or does the team feel like they have found something that works?
e: We are pretty much sticking with what we have now, some of us didn’t even play the characters prior so seeing how it all goes.
It felt like Selfless had struggled for a long time to really find the consistency to break through and contest the NA Top 10. It all built up toward the Overwatch Open NA Qualifiers; you beat Splyce 2-0, then they took you down in the run back 1-2. How big of a setback was missing out on Atlanta for team morale or did you feel like that version of the roster just wasn’t good enough?
e: The Atlanta situation certainly didn’t help but I felt even prior to that we were starting to notice that chemistry wise and strategy wise we just weren’t there. I think it really came down to us not understanding how to play the game and having a varying mindset within the team. Once the Atlanta loss happened we kind of knew that something would possibly change. The thing is we never really wanted to do any type of changes it just eventually came down to the point where people just didn’t really want to play.
e: Rob, Mike and I played COD at one point. Rob was on EG and mike and I played for a team together. We ended up playing on teams together later on in different games that were not COD.
So you guys were all friends and had played together for some time – was that why it took you so long to act and make some painful changes? Was there a certain amount of inertia because people didn’t want to step on each others toes?
e: Yeah well juv3nile and chilly both played other games with us too. I think we really wanted to make it work it just came down to the point where we couldn’t get things to go the way we wanted and didn’t take enough time to define ourselves as a team. The stepping on each others toes thing certainly is something we didn’t want to do because we were all such good friends for a long time.
So what was the breaking point and who was the one to step up and take action?
e: I think it really just came down to some people not wanting to be on the team while others didn’t want to play their current role etc. I don’t really think anyone stepped up and took action. Just kind of happened all on its own.
Was it this kind of stagnation that lead to juv3nile leaving the team?
e: I would say he just wasn’t enjoying himself on the team and wanted to find something else to do. He was also going on a 2 week vacation so for him it just made sense. He’s a good dude.
So at the time juv3nile left, you started playing with Kellar, we saw you play with Rinavx and later Sinatraa. Did you try any other options? How did it all come about and how do you feel they all stacked up?
e: We had tried a few other people from ranked and ones on current teams now but originally we still had rob on dps during this process. We initially searched for a support and a dps while I moved to flex. We then later on decided that rob still wanted to support moved him to that then started trying out various people. It was a pretty long process for us. We didn’t want to rush into things too quickly but at the same time we didn’t want to wait too long on players. What we really wanted was a team full of 6 people who have great chemistry, a similar mindset and good comms. That was a big deal for us and that’s what it really come down to in the end. We tried out a lot of talented players who I’m sure will end up on some great teams.
e: I think the try outs helped us try to understand the game more. You can swap in a bunch of people all day long but if you aren’t trying to play the game together in a certain way it just won’t work. So the tryout process kind of helped us support/tanks figure out certain different strategies we never even considered before. Kellar and Sinatraa are both vocal in a positive way and let us support them. I would be lying to you if I said I knew their full competitive backgrounds I just know they both played a bit of CS prior to Overwatch, no clue on the whole history.
It looks like the roster changes are already paying dividends – Selfless picked up a big win at the weekend in the Realm Hallow’s End Invite Cup #2, beating four teams currently ranked above you in NA (Helix, Method, Denial and -bird noises-) by GosuGamers. What did this result mean to you after such a long period of uncertainty?
e: Wins are great, it is certainly a wonderful thing to see. We still have a long way to go and we will see what happens as everything goes forward. Absolutely no complaints about winning though, just hoping that we can continue that and not take any steps back. We have A LOT to work on so i’m hoping we will be able to constantly work on what we need to.
What are your thoughts on the current state of NA Ovewatch? In the same period where Selfless had fallen off a little, we saw some exciting teams like Rise Nation, Method and Kingdom eSports emerge from the pack; it seems like it is more competitive than ever. What’s it like competing in this kind of environment?
e: I think it’s great having a lot more teams that can compete. It makes practice days way better and makes it a bit more exciting. Teams will only continue to get better when the practice is a bit better.
Finally then, what are the current goals for Selfless Gaming? What tournaments are on your radar? Where can the fans hope to see you competing?
e: Current goals are just to keep on improving and make sure that we keep trying to expand how we play. There is so much you can do in this game so hopefully we can continue working on that. Tournament wise I’m not really sure waiting to see what comes around for now. It seems to be an off season for Overwatch right now so just going to see what comes out. Obviously the Blizzard league is rumored so waiting to see all the details.
Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. I’m looking forward to seeing what Selfless can bring in the months ahead!
e: Yep no problem and thank you!
The Selfless Gaming roster is now:
- Michael “Michael3D” Wilbanks (Tank)
- Jeff “emongg” Anderson (Flex)
- Rob “rob-wiz” Kennedy (Support)
- Daniel “dhaK” Martinez Paz (Support)
- Justin “Kellar” Kellar (DPS)
- Jay “Sinatraa” Wong (DPS)