Over the last year, Cloud9’s former analyst, physiX, has burst on the Vainglory scene. She’s played Vainglory8 at EU, writes strategical posts that are published by Broken Myth, is a part of this group Girls & Glory, but has really left her mark in her aggressive analysis and draft art. PhysiX hails from the SEA region and is presently enrolled in college in the UK. Shortly after that the 2017 World Championship at Singapore, physics announced she would be departing the aggressive scene in Vainglory to pursue her education in engineering. We wanted to take this opportunity to sit down with her because she transforms into a new part of the community.
Broken Myth (BM): How were you introduced to Vainglory, and what interested you most about the game?
PhysiX: It’s a funny story, actually. When I began using Vainglory hack, I didn’t even have a system that could play Vainglory yet. My boyfriend introduced me 2014 on his iPad, and I truly loved the match. Not sure if it was called Kindred then or maybe not, but I remember watching him play (and hijacking his device to perform!) Sometimes when we spent time together. The idea of a MOBA really intrigued me, but I didn’t have a computer that I could play the more popular MOBAs like League or DOTA on.
BM: When did you know you wanted to be part of Vainglory’s competitive scene?
PhysiX: It was about the time VIPL two occurred. I watched the VODs — the ones for VIPL too — and just found myself dreaming about being on stage as well as competing. Well, it isn’t called Vainglory with no reason, and that I had some fairly rough fantasies. Gankstars was one of those teams I really looked up to at the time — my favorites during my time watching VIPL as well as the catalyst which sparked my idea to be part of the competitive scene as an analyst. Back then I was just another player like anybody on the market, with just a little knack for numbers and writing, and a dream that seemed impossible.
It only actually hit me that I could achieve that dream when I was scouted out by Cloud9’s supervisor, Ian, to be a part of a “superteam” he had been making for 2017. And everything went on out there.
PhysiX: I love to see and watch anime — I devour tales very quickly! Oh, and that I actually enjoy writing too, from short stories to kids’ science articles to Vainglory posts. Consuming and generating content only makes me happy, warm and fuzzy on the inside, and the most obvious to anyone who knows me: I love food!!! I didn’t realize that before my guildmates pointed out I had been always rapping on some food or another whenever I had been on a voice conversation with them. But food has ever been part of the life that I look forward to each day.
BM: Since you’re from the SEA, have played in EU, and have been an analyst for an NA team, how have your experiences in different regions helped you?
And that I learned different items from each area.
I began playing with Vainglory in the SEA, in which the gamers are salty as the sea and toxic like taunting SAWports. Being in this kind of environment taught me patience and endurance, and to take failures as they go but not be affected by it. SEA players greatly accentuate on micro play compared to macro play, and gamers would often try to win only by mechanical ability while ignoring rotational strategies. SEA is also among the very creative areas, cooking unconventional approaches and assembles like WP Adagio and Serpent Mask/Breaking Point Vox weeks before others servers did.
Back in EU, I had been welcomed to the community. The overall playstyle at EU was less aggressive in comparison to NA and preferred hyper carries and overdue game strategies. However, I had two teammates that I frequently played with who were extremely competitive, frequently diving but always managing to trade of a single, if two kills. I learned to play efficiently as a captain, and dive in together with no hesitation and keep them alive at all costs, allowing them to wipe out the enemy team. I climbed up to a supportive player, willing to perform a less flashy role and choose the rep if necessary.
While I maintained a support role, I climbed braver as a person and learned to grab opportunities as they came by. Speaking up was sometimes difficult for me personally, but when I did not voice my remarks, I’d never be heard. I learned optimism.
As an interesting side note, I found it funny that all 3 regions call and know me by different names. EU players call me “pay” since I know them on a more casual and friendly basis. NA players call me “physiX”.
Can you anticipate this to take place? How did you handle the sudden resulting popularity in the community?
PhysiX: ” I was super shocked. I just happened to be on point for a replacement for our coach, Wilmer, who could not be there at live. If we’d won with him on stage (yes, we would have, Wilmer spearheaded the drafting process), Wilmer would most likely have gotten all of the attention. It was just a matter of being at the right place, at the ideal moment.
I had been kinda overwhelmed when I got so much focus immediately. I used to be shy (I still am, somewhat), so I simply tried to slide out of that which, leaving the after-party celebration early to catch the train home (I’d lectures the following day!), deflecting interviews to the team players or manager. The popularity was enjoyable, however, with a guilty pleasure — seeing my Twitter feed blow up immediately, my name actually being known and put up there with competitive players.
What I was most happy about (or at least thrilled), was that very few knew in my background or identity. It took about a month to get a while to work out I was female, and two months for the EU competitive players to realize that I was out of their own server! In a neighborhood where there are very few female players (there is none in NA/EU competitive), and players are somewhat biased against areas, it speaks a lot.
Also, I’m pretty happy that the occasions of Spring Unified caused teams to pick up analysts and coaches everywhere, as well as put the focus on the draft. If Vainglory’s aggressive scene was to further develop, support team needed to play a larger role, as well as the intricacies of Vainglory gameplay needed to be enlarged upon.
Funny, however. Although I had been known for my own drafting, I picked up drafting duty fourteen days before the tournament because our first drafter needed to focus on personal life things. Before vgpro.gg along with other websites was up and running, I was spying on other groups using my own program.
BM: What are some of your expectations for 5V5?
PhysiX: I believe 5V5 is your turning point for Vainglory, at which SEMC will either make it or break it. With the developers being so dedicated and attached to this community, I am sure they’re putting in their for 5V5! However, it’s directly adapting a special game style and game components initially intended for 3V3 into an expanded map with bigger complexity. That means it’s certainly going to be a quite mess at first, probably easily manipulated by the way that some wise players cook. But once everything smoothes out, loopholes get patched up and germs get exterminated, the real fun starts! There are layers and layers of depth which gets inserted into 5V5, and players can no more bull their way through with pure mechanical ability.
BM: Which region do you think will be the fastest to adapt to 5V5?
PhysiX: I think that it’ll have to be North America. They have the largest pool of competitive players that in total dedicate the maximum amount of time playing Vainglory. The majority of the players who have been testing the primitive 5V5 alpha/beta models are from NA too. So they’ve had time to form adequate strategies and metas that work effectively in 5V5.
BM: Another advantage that you’ve become notorious for doing well (besides drafting) is articles that you compose covering various analytical subjects in Vainglory. How do you come up with topics for your posts?
PhysiX: I just get inspiration from how folks play in ranked games and questions which people ask. The first article that really got out to the audience was “Capitalising on Items for Captains”. I wrote it because I detected that the captain I played within rated kept purchasing the very same items again in precisely the exact same order — Fountain of Renewal, Crucible, ” War Treads, Atlas Pauldron — even though the scenario called for another item construct. By way of instance, players could still construct Crucible second in spite of the fact that the enemy team did not have some stun or root abilities. Then people started reading, and it spread. A few articles later, people began texting me, asking for information on such and gameplay. So rather than giving specific information, I decided to write a general article so I could only copy-paste the hyperlink to anyone who asked. Lazy, but effective.
BM: As you declared soon following the 2017 World Championship, you’re retiring from the competitive scene as an analyst, and moving on to finish your education.
PhysiX: I am in my second year of Engineering! I picked Engineering because I really like math, but wished to move it to a more applied context. I’ve already determined and educated my career path for the next 8 years, and I’m sure I will enjoy it.
PhysiX: As of today, I haven’t picked a field to concentrate on. My path only requires me to chose at the end of the second year. And I am still not sure what I am likely to do.
BM: Can you ever see yourself coming back to the competitive arena in Vainglory in any capacity?
PhysiX: Definitely not within the next half a year or so, and most likely never. I am devoting my college period to concentrate on my coursework and my exams, so I’ll be occupied until June 2018.
I have also seen a lot of cutthroat actions happen behind the scenes of competitive, detrimentally impacting many people in the competitive arena. I don’t wish to be put between a rock and a hard place if I get caught in a play, and that I don’t want to step on other people to fulfill ambitions.
Until I find a team with players whom I really like in terms of character, work gameplay and ethics (or my resolve to stay out of the spectacle wavers, I figure) I won’t be returning. I’ll probably just be a casual player who occasionally helps out other or provides advice, fading from glory and memory.
Being in the competitive arena is indeed addictive, however. The thrill of competing, though I’m not directly playing, encouraging your team and working hard to make that glory… It’s hard to let go…
PhysiX: Time is at a premium as always, but that I frequently lament the fact that I lack the programming skills to create and maintain programs to aid myself in Vainglory analysis. If I had unlimited resources, I’d surely produce a drafting AI bot. I know it’s possible to make this, and I have done a job involving machine learning this past year. I just need the time and tenacity… I would need 10,000 years to finish that though!