Wita – The QuakeCon 2019 Interview
Thank you for sitting down with me.
No problem, man.
So how was your QuakeCon experience so far?
It has been great. Everyone’s been super lovely. Obviously, we’ve got to get back into this later, but my performance was not satisfactory. I had a lot of things where I did not play well enough. I did not mulligan correctly. I had a lot of nerves, as well. A lot of people were saying I was super nervous and I was. I didn’t bottle up correctly because the type of nerves that I have when going on stage is different because like on the casting desk that’s my natural element and I was like a juggler going to crack if I beat Karakon, oh I’m back in my natural element and right before the first people I did the interviews with and on the caster’s desk.
Overall though, I enjoyed getting to meet, not even just the players, getting to sit down with people like Jason, Christian (CVH) and even just meeting people who are like here that aren’t really involved with the masters like people like Eolis and her husband and Silverfuse’s husband as well has been pretty nice and also Ian, Endo, aka Alex and everybody involved who’s been here and watched the tournament has been cool. Also the fact that I got recognized by a person named Surebanker is amazing who was super cool. He likes my stream, that was really something else.
Did you get to meet any of the Bethesda staff?
Oh this is kind of fun. So, Eolis had a plus one for the ESO-thing, like a mixer. And so I got to meet the ESO community manager named Gina, who is like one of the main community managers for that game. It was kind of funny because I was set earlier watching the presentation to go with Boomslife. We don’t even play ESO, we were just like, “so we were going to check this out and it’s probably going to be pretty cool,” and it was kinda cool. I was getting to talk to “important people” and that was something interesting. Also, I somehow managed to sneak a meal voucher out of a guy named John from ID software. So, that was kind of funny.
So how was your trip out to Dallas? Did you have any difficulty getting out here?
It’s kind of interesting because I did not even have 24 hours before the games when I went to bed as I got here on Wedesnday. When I arrived at Dulles Airport in Washington I luckily had Boomslife in front of me in the customs queue, so I could jump forward to him or else I would have missed my flight and I wouldn’t have been able to fly out here until the day after. That was the only real trouble. I had no obscene delays or bad timing in the layover which you sometimes happens.
How did you prepare for the tournament?
Some people will say I was too relaxed, but for me it was all about getting here in the first place, that was pretty important to me. So, after qualifying, I went home to see my family for a month and I even extended that trip for a few days, because I thought that we would have more time to submit decklists. We had to submit decklists on the 19th and I thought we had leeway until the 21st, but obviously they had to do media stuff and I had already extended my trip back home for one day and it was kind of annoying in a sense.
I just practiced a lot with Boomslife. I got some decks from Corey Millhouse and he has been super cool to me as well. So I just did my testing with Boomslife mainly and we tested a lot of things here and there, and obviously we did something correctly, because he got second. I probably put in way few hours less than most people did, but overall I thought it was enough. I think that, had I played better on the day, I probably would be sitting here with 6 rather than 2k.
What’s your favorite decklist that you brought?
My pet child was the Sorcerer list which is very much off the wall. But I’m kind of sad that I didn’t get to showcase a battlemage list that wasn’t mid-battlemage. Because I think that that list is super fun. If you are listening or are reading this you should go out and test my battlemage, I brought here, on ladder to try something that isn’t prophecy BM or midrange BM. Because it is actually super fun once you get the hang with it. It will take you a few games to get there, but it’s a really, really, really cool deck to play because it just goes really fast. People don’t like when I talk about Hearthstone, but if you ever were a face thunder player in Hearthstone you’ll appreciate the math and race maths and the things you can do with this deck to get there.
You were actually the only one bring Prowl Smuggler?
The thing is that the Dagoth list and the Guildsworn list that I played were Boomslife’s lists as well. His Guildsworn was a few cards different because I had few different techs for his matchup specifically, but we both brought Prowl Smuggler in Dagoth and I brought it in the mid-BM. I think Prowl Smuggler is a card that is really, really good. Because it’s a card that allows you to split your pressure. Obviously, it dies to Firebolt, but a lot of decks can’t contest with the 3/2 statline. And a 3/2 to statline is really good. That’s also why I brought Reaper in Sorcerer because I needed the 3/2 statline to contest Barrow Stalker or Fifth Legion Trainer, etc. And I think that it is a payoff card that keeps getting better every time you hit face with the pilfer effect. What you can do very often is to have three attack Altmer Flameslingers, you can have four attack Withered Hands and you can facilitate trades or push damage, so whatever you want to do. It’s just a card that keeps on giving. A lot of people play Crown Quartermaster. It’s sort of like a Crown Quartermaster, but with a higher pay off but also with a higher risk.
Speaking of interesting deck choices. You brought Bone Colossus, Nahagliiv, and Preserver of the Root.
So the thing about that. A lot of people would be like “Why do you not just go with Alfiq Conjurer and Mighty Conjuring”? And as it is, you can get under those decks pretty faithfully and especially if you’re on the ring and they can’t ring out Conjurer on turn 4 with an atronach that proccs it, you have a negation or whatever. But what happened when at least I have tried putting Alfiq and Mighty Conjuring into Sorcerer is that I very often got battlemace’d by the battlemage. So the thing is that on turn 7, if they play Belligerent Giant on your Bone Collossus, you still have three 1/1s in play that will allow you to push six damage afterwards.
So, Bone Colossus is kind of a hard card for battlemage to go one-for-one with. Obviously, Tribunal in the format can still easily get rid of the card and I can see why people might dislike that.
And for Preserver of the Roots, I was looking for a four drop that scaled into later stages of the game. So I was missing out because when I got the person doing the same thing for me. The thing about preserver is interesting because you can drop it on four, always, and you can always drop it on five or six. And what happens is that when you drop that thing on six it forces out removal. And in aggro matchups, a lot of times you aren’t going to be dead by turn seven, like I did against Karakon, because he had some somewhat fortunate draw for the crusader. But obviously I also mulligan’ed incorrectly and he knows that I am not putting anything away from his play at all. am not disputing that at all. But I very often found that you get those things done that actually have an impact on specific matchups. And I think that it’s a card that when you have so much stuff in the deck that requires silence, you have Bleak Coast Trolls, you have Hauntings Spirits, you have Daggerfall Mages so I think when you put this thing down and your opponent is out of point removal it is a four mana 6/6 which is still pretty relevant. So what it does is the fact that it allows you to counter-push as well in very specific situations. And that’s why I like to play sorcerer to set-up a counter-push. So if you saw the game with sorcerer versus crusader, which I probably should’ve won if I had actually done the rune math correctly but I was so – a combination of tilted nervous and on edge – that I miscounted the math and forgot that Green Pact Ambusher was a thing, I specifically tried to manipulate the buff from the Haunting Spirit onto the Bleak Coast, because I wanted to be able to attack with big bombs to the face. Because that allows you to more directly counter-push things in the future.
So before we talk about your matches, do you have a favorite match from the tournament overall?
Stuff I enjoyed watching? None of my own. I don’t think that my own necessarily lended themselves too well. Obviously, if Booms hadn’t gotten 3:0’d in the final I’d be the only person to go three-zero.
It’s whatever right. It doesn’t matter it’s not like we’re getting extra money for winning a match on the series or anything. But I really enjoyed watching Booms vs. Super in the semi’s because that was really cool and I also enjoyed watching Karakon versus Thuldir in the semi’s. I believe if you’re going to go back and watch back the series a thing that watching Thuldir versus Karakon is going to be a very interesting case study in what bringing an off-the-wall midrange deck that does have a lot of various pressure points is where you want to be with specific decks. I think that that’s just like a master class and playing the end. But I was speaking with Endozoa about the game and he was asking what I thought the game score would be? And I said, I don’t know what the game scores will be, necessarily, but I’m going to say that the Empire wins three games and Empire won three games.
Alright. So, I know you wanted to talk before our interview about how much emotion you were showing through the matches
So obviously I cursed pretty much and I completely forgot that we had stage mikes.
That “I didn’t draw a single fucking negation”?
Yeah that got out and I was going mad about that. I had like the initial like “fuck, man”-thing and after that happened I was frustrated. But then I just yelled out there “I didn’t draw a single fucking negation” and I couldn’t believe the mikes were up. And I obviously regret that. But I didn’t really have had the ability to go outside. This is a massive convention. Wherever I go, I was gonna upset and offend some people. The thing is that. As a person I have a very loose association with the f-word. Like I use it quite freely but I know that in a lot of cultures using the f-word is a really bad thing. Like it carries a lot more weight in specific cultures, like American culture, as well, as if I’m frustrated or something.
I mean it really depends on which part of the US you are from.
Yeah, but it doesn’t really carry the same weight for me as for someone else and I sometimes forget that. And I’m still sorry about that. But something to notice about that. I suppose it will seem super arbitrary, like, super unimportant to people, and they’be, like, why do you say that now? But, if I had won, I would probably have obviously shown respect to my opponent but I would have had a reaction that most people would consider over the top because I think that as a broadcaster you need those emotions.
Obviously, those who don’t know me, my primary background is that I cast a lot and I get really upset when players don’t really show happy emotions because they feel like they have to respect their opponents too much. For example, that initial joy of winning things that you used to get from watching like Starcraft or some of the team-based eSports titles, you don’t really see in card games, generally speaking. And I think it’s a sad thing because I feel like I love watching people get riled up, for better or worse. Because it gives casters narratives to feel off, so they don’t have to fake their own excitement about things. And obviously I’m sorry to people that I offended with my actions. I also feel like obviously those were not okay.
But I feel like that as a community we should be okay with people wanting to show their frustrations or their happiness with things without having to clown on them for being who they want to be and showing real emotions. Because the thing is that if you want to build narratives you need the real raw emotion to power through, because that’s the reason you have face cams, because you want to see people’s reactions, you want to see how they act, you want to see their persona, like how stoic they are, or like really erratic, because you want to feel these things. And I think that obviously that’s not okay what I did, it’s definitely not okay. But overall I think there’s a lot of things to be said about how we should be considering people that act out on their emotions in terms of being happy or sad or dissatisfied with the result or whatever.
Awesome. Alright, last question. What are you going to do after this?
Oh, people are going to hate me again. But I’m going to go home and get ready for school and I might have something coming out that means I’ll be playing everyone’s least favorite card game a little bit again. Because I’m going to work on an event most likely, we’ll see how it ends up next week, but I’ll have to do that. And obviously, I would be streaming Legends.
I won’t be doing a QuakeCon review because my games weren’t interesting enough for me to go back over them. Because I did not play well enough for me to sit down and record that. But I obviously I’ll be going back to streaming a bit. The people that know will know that I like to take a very analytical approach to playing and I like to share my thoughts and teach my things the way I go about them. I like to play decks that are pretty straight forward to teach people and myself as well. It’s more like I’m not going to be playing like Telvanni weirdness that is really hard to explain where you just have to go through the motions whenever and I feel like that’s fine. But I like to be able to like converse with people and discuss card decisions and just general play patterns, so I’ll be doing that. I’ll also have casting work that will not be as relevant for people who don’t really play anything but Legends. But I’ll have like a lot of stories to share from QuakeCon as well. It’s been super fun meeting everyone and just being here. I’m super thankful for the fact that I’ve been flown out here and it will resonate with me a lot more when I get back home that I just got to go to America to play a card game, win money, and hang with a bunch of super, super cool people.
Alright, well thank you so much for taking the time to talk to me Wita.
Thank you so much, man.
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