Taking home the crown in the GLL Pre-Season finals, we spoke with Team Kinguin's Mathias Larsen, known in-game by his last name, on his recent victory, his thoughts on the game's exit from early access and into patch 1.0, and the current competitive landscape.
You recently competed in the Global Loot League Pre-Season Grand Finals, placing first among 18 of the current best teams. What were your expectations heading in, and were you concerned with any teams in particular?
PUBG was in a weird spot around GLL, most people (myself included) were playing mostly test servers around the time of the tournament, but me and my team are pretty confident and have a very set gameplan. We had no expectations heading in, we just came prepared with all the knowledge of the Erangel map and how the teams we were competing againsted GLL played it. Our movement was on point which let us advance to the later game pretty easily in most of the games.
Who do you feel are some of the strongest teams right now?
With 1.0 coming out tomorrow it is hard to say, but the most consistent teams have been Team Vitality (Former aAa) and FaZe Clan. There is a lot of other strong teams but Vitality and FaZe have probably been the best placed teams overall in early access.
What’s the dynamic like in your team? Does everyone have a specific role? Who does most of the play calling?
We do not have any specific roles, we split up a lot but everyone can play off anyone.When it comes to calling it’s 50/50 between me and Ibiza, we discuss a lot of things amongst the team but if Ibiza or I say “This is what we’redoing” everyone trusts that call and goes straight away.
You’ve been around the competitive scene since early on. What are some of the biggest issues you’ve faced since you started playing and what are you most looking forward to in 2018?
The biggest issues with competitive scene have definitely been lag issues. When people rotate after a circle update you will not be able to play the game and shoot, (I have one of the best overclocked computers on the market) and I’ll still have 20 fps when people are rotating. Also when there are 50 alive in a small circle and about 20-30 vehicles you just can’t play the game.
So the games have kind of been like "yeah if we get the circle and wait for people to die we can actually play the game again when there is less than 25 alive"… I did not attend IEM, but it was the same problem on LAN there.
Other than that I can’t wait to see what future tournaments have in the works production wise and how spectating of tournaments is handled. We’ve seen two LAN events in IEM & Gamescom, and it felt like the people observing barely ever played the game, or at the very least had no clue about the competitive scene.
It’s a process, but for esports to be successful it needs to be enjoyable to watch, and more often than not we ended up being shown the wrong places on the map.
There has been quite a bit of debate on things like TPP vs FPP, Circle Centralization, and even the format of events and how many games should dictate a series. How do you feel about potentially competing in TPP?
I feel like FPP is the most competitive setting to play the game in, but how do I feel about it potentially competing in TPP. That’s a good question, I mean TPP just enables you to camp and never show yourself and just hide behind cover until someone has to move, but when the first couple of online tournaments came out in this game we were one of the best teams in TPP and if it goes back to TPP (hopefully it doesn’t) we will do everything we can to be on top of it.
I don’t like circle centralization as a whole, I like the randomness of the circles but there is currently one circle there is out of form, I can’t remember the exact number of it but people call it “death circle” and the problem with it, is that for the most part just goes STRAIGHT to one corner and if you are at the other side of it, you don’t have time to fight your way into the circle and if you don’t have enough vehicles you might as well just exit out of theggame and deny the enemies points from killing you.
A way of fixing this is either giving you more time to play out that circle, add another circle, or make it slightly bigger so it is not as punishing. I don’t think centralizing circlesas a whole would be a good idea.
What's your ideal tournament format?
Best of-3 is completely random since it is usually only 3-4 teams qualifying and if you have one bad game you are usually out unless you win two games back-to-back. I prefer bo5 or bo8 tournaments and believe the team with the overall best movement and shooting will win.
There are a lot of tournaments that have a point system where getting first place and kills is not very rewarding, you can win three games out of five and still not ending up in top three because third and fourth place get almost the same amount of points. To sum it up, I think that I prefer tournaments with five-to-eight games, a point system that is rewarding chicken dinners, and high-kill games so you have a comeback mechanic if you had a bad game or two in a long series.
What has been your favorite event to compete in so far?
I don’t think I’ve had a favorite event to be in yet, after we did not qualify for IEM we’ve been spending the time rebuilding our team. We had a lot of losses to figure out how Gaxy and Lore could compliment Ibiza and I. The last week of Auzom we manged to get three last places in a row and didn’t play in the Auzom finals so we only really had Curse and GLL. And both tournaments ran really smooth. The only problem we have is that we have to play A LOT of NA games even though most of the teams participating are usually European.
1.0 is set to release tonight, and the Test Server has been available with Miramar for the past several weeks. What are your impressions of the new map and do you like it more than Erangel? What, if any changes would you want to see on either map?
I don’t think we can take the map as a whole, it feels like to me they’ve made the shooting perfect for Erangel where you would mostly be in 100-300 meters encounters. Shooting much further than that now is really really really hard with any gun especially on moving targets. On Miramar there is a lot of 400-600 meter encounters and I guess we'll just have to see how they play out in the future.
Some of my concerns coming into Miramar have been rotations and movement. We’ve gotten some new vehicles on the map that are pretty much all worse than the UAZ or the Dacia. On Miramar it is a lot more difficult to drive through the terrain so I’m a little bit worried to see how moving around the map is gonna be, but it is not something I can really give my opinion about until i’ve played a bunch of scrims and tournaments.
On the test servers there is usually about 30-35 people alive after the first shrink. In a tournament setting everyone would probably be alive.
I also can’t tell you what map I like the most, when I have the same amount of time played on Miramar as Erangel I can tell you. New is always fun so for the time being I enjoy being on Miramar more, we have a set game planfor pretty much any given situation on Erangle and Miramar is just a big fat question mark we will have to explore.
What is your ideal PUBG map?
I’ve played about 6000 hours in Arma 2 & Arma 3 and the map I enjoyed the most was Chernarus (reminds of Erangel just with a lot less water) It’s a green map with a lot of forest, roads and hills and only a few big cities. But Idon’t have the imagination to print out the ideal map for PUBG, it would probably be more cities like Pecado & South Georgopol where you can land and fight people, instead of huge cities with a lot of big buildings with neverending rooms. I like it when the team with the best tactical approach can surround and kill enemy teams.
What are your favorite changes implemented in 1.0, from ADS to the new UI?
My favorite changes about 1.0 is the improved volume levels on vehicles, better overall performance and no guns on Miramar spawn island. I remember my first impressions about the UI was that I want to be able to changewhere I want the hud myself rather than the game deciding. Also the kill feed is really hard to keep track of, and it should be better highlighted when your teammates down and kill enemies.
How do you feel about the new bullet velocity and changes? Do you prefer the old?
Right now it feels like there is something really wrong with any gun and a 4x/8x. I can’t tell if it is because of the new bullet velocity, bad hit registration, bad servers or what it is. But right now shooting the 4x and the 8x feels like buying a lottery ticket, sometimes your bullets will hit and other times they vanish into thin air.
Allso people taking 10 bullets and still running away because you don’t hit them in the torso is ridiculous.
So for now I prefer EVERYTHING about the old bullet velocity, hit reg, and the amount of damage you take per bullet.
What’s on your PUBG XMAS Wishlist?
Someone give me a red playerunknown bandana pls.