Interview : Stewie2k from Cloud9

PVPLive conducted an interview with rising talent Stewie2k from Cloud9. Cloud9 recently won the ESL Pro League in what was definitely unexpected by a lot of people´s standards. It is yet to be seen if they would be able to keep the same level of gameplay alive to win the next tournament. With the Major set to be held on American soil, their next few months of games will be on home soil.

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Since your joining Cloud9 the roster has changed, I wouldn’t say often, but enough to have to adapt around the new addition. How was it changing up your play style when you started, then again adding Slemmy, and then finally again adding autimatic? Would you say you learned faster because of it?

To be honest, Cloud 9 hasn’t taught me too much. It was more learning on my own by playing with the top teams and just absorbing all the knowledge, scenarios, and applying it all into my own gameplay. I’m not saying Cloud 9 hasn’t helped me, but I’m saying this team has paved the road for me. As for adding Slemmy, I don’t think it was a big impact for us and I didn’t learn too much. At the time, we desperately needed a player since it was mid season, every one was contracted, and no one on the team was willing to be the in-game leader. Adding autimatic was our priority afterwards because we saw potential in him. So at the end of the day, I wouldn’t say I learned faster because of all these roster changes and new players, but I would say just giving me the chance to play at this level helped me adapt.

Bringing in autimatic gave the team more firepower and was a confidence boost because, as you said, you all saw potential in him. At the time of his addition, would you have thought you’d win out at ESL Pro league like you did? What was going through your mind as you kept pushing closer and closer to the grand finals of EPL?

Bringing in autimatic was definitely a confidence boost because we knew we finally have 5 players who hold their own, know how to deal with many scenarios, and have a mind on their owns. We saw a high ceiling with our team and we didn’t think we’d win pro league this soon. We knew we would make extreme improvements at these LANs, but not at such a fast rate.

As for what was going through my mind during ESL Pro League finals, I thought every match was a war. There’s no easy match. Every match will be tough whether we are up 15-0 or not, every round mattered. The only way we win is with confidence and a clear mind. Even when we got out of groups and played OpTic in the quarterfinals, I didn’t feel close to the finals until we beat them. Once we beat OpTic, I knew this was our chance to take it all. I even tweeted out that we were going to take it all.

Some say this is the strongest iteration of C9, where do you realistically see yourself and the team headed and what do you think needs to change or improve to get there?

I’ve told my team this before and I’m not trying to sound like a jerk, but this is for sure the strongest roster Cloud 9 has ever had. I picture our team as the top 5 teams in the world right now. I think we need to compete with more consistency and come out with more confidence for us to stay that way. If we improve our team play onto the level Virtus Pro has then I think we’d be the most feared team.

The team is at a place right now where you’ve accomplished big things, but you’re still considered somewhat fresh as a unit. With IBP Masters coming up which leads to iem Oakland, plus the you’ve just qualified for the Minors leading into the January major how do you guys stay focused and “unreadable” with events happening in such quick succession?

Winning ESL Pro League definitely made me feel good, but personally I don’t think its a big accomplishment. I would never feel accomplished with my career until I win a major on American soil in front of die-hard Cloud9 fans. With no disrespect, I feel like the minors shouldn’t have any effect on our gameplay. If we play the way we’ve been playing and even if the other team anticipates it, we should be able to beat them. It’s not a matter of being “unreadable”, its more of playing as a team and being able to outplay them. Assuming that we could make the major qualifiers, I think that’s where we start attempting to be “unreadable”.

What are the expectations like for you personally and for your team?

Personally, I have extremely high expectations for my team because we have such high caliber players and veterans that we should be able to know how to play every scenario. I think hitting rock bottom and starting at the beginning for the major would be a good step for us. I think it would strengthen our stamina for wanting to win and keeping up with the meta. As for the team, I think our expectations are to qualify for the major and AT LEAST make it out of groups to play in front of a crowd.

What happened or what event sparked the idea that you knew you belonged as a pro player? Basically, when did you think… “damn, I made it”?

I think my very first LAN with Cloud 9 sparked that I belonged on this team because we beat G2, one of the better teams in my opinion. I think my series of breakout LANs and confidence boosting all started at Dreamhack Austin.

When I thought I finally made it was when I was treated as a real friend and teammate on Cloud 9. Once that happened, I knew I had some “say” on the team, would be able to manage this team, and hopefully lead them into the right direction.

Do people meme at you on the streets now?

Hahaha, I’ve been recognized many times at the gym and the streets a couple times. It definitely feels good, but when I’m out of game I try not to let the fame get into my head. I like to picture people as equal, as cliché as that sounds. I may sound like a jerk every now and then on stream and stuff, but I think trash talking should be apart of the game. It’s what entertains viewers, but should never be taken personally.

Any last words or shoutouts you want to share?

I’d like to give a shoutout to all the fans who stick with us through thick and thin. We see your tweets and we really do recognize who the genuine fans are and who aren’t. Lastly, I’d like to give a shoutout to all our sponsors and thanks for everything provided.

 

Source : PVPLive