We completed ETF2L Season 13 and landed the number two spot in Europe for competitive Team Fortress 2! To that end I’ve got some odds’n’ends that have accumulated as a result and thought it’s about time I shared them with you (before we got on to the next season and a few special announcements!). Please read on for a wonderful post-season interview with cc//Smzi from guest writer Chaplain (author of many other awesome scene pieces), a serious retrospective from our team captain cc//Admirable and a gushing set of shoutouts and thank-you’s from myself.
This summary may be short but you’ll want to get those reading glasses on, curl up in your favourite chair by the fire and prepare yourself to enjoy the following pages, hope you like it!
CHAPLAIN’S SMZI INTERVIEW
Samuel ‘smzi’ nbs has been through a meteoric rise to fame recently, having being jolted through a white knuckle ride of consistently excellent performances against players with several times more experience than him, often besting them at a game they claim to have perfected. He was a vital catalyst in accelerating his team into the ETF2L Season 13 final, establishing himself as one of the most prem-eminent up-and-coming scouts in Europe.
Chaplain : Afternoon sam, how you doing?
Smzi : Doing great, looking forward to practice tonight.
Chaplain : Sum yourself up in four words.
Smzi : Ambitious helpful cynical troll
Chaplain : Straight down to business, how do you and your team feel about your final standing this season?
Smzi : Our goal was to reach the top 3 of season 13’s Premier Division, which also meant that we had to leave behind our secret rivals (TLR, formerly known as Nitrose) who got hyped after their good performance at i46. So after saving our spot in the playoffs we decided to keen it up. Thankfully we beat TLR and BFF due to our will to improve as a team. Its a shame we couldn’t catch up with Epsilon in the finals but overall I am really happy about our 2nd place in Etf2l.
Chaplain : What is your personal highlight of season 13?
Smzi : When we beat BFF in the semi’s. This was probably the best moment in my TF2 career so far. Like 5 seconds after we won the second map everyone was just saying stuff like “uhm did we win?”..”what happened?” and out of nowhere Retshock was like “why are u guys excited this is nothing new to me” 😀
Chaplain : Have you decided on an (individual or collective) aim for next season?
Smzi : As far as i know cc// will participate in the next season and we hope that we can keep on contesting EU’s Top3. As everyone probably has noticed Epsilon is the best team atm so our main goal is to be able to compete with them on a regular basis, take maps from them etc. This might not apply for next season but my personal goal is to go to LAN with a top team, that would be great.
Chaplain : What do you think of the big differences in American play (In comparison to European play) and are they something you have taken into account in your playing style?
Smzi : The biggest difference between EU and NA tf2 is definitely the dedication American players put into TF2. They just practice as a team and individually as much as they can. I noticed at I46 that the EU teams would often slack off practice or take it easy, during which, the NA teams were keening it up, playing dm 24/7, doing demo analysis and pcws all the time. EU needs to keen it up to become a serious threat for the NA teams.
Chaplain : Many people praise your scout partner TviQ as a genius in his field and an individual player; would it be unfair to say that you are living in his shadow, and how does your chemistry behave in and out of game?
Smzi : Well Tviq is definitely a great player and I personally think he is the best sniper in EU atm. I think thats what Tviq gets praised for cuz headshots are always more attractive in casts than a pocket scout that finishes off bombers or flanks. The role I play does not favour ‘hero plays’, as Admirable said, I am a watchful guardian. So its alright to be in Tviqs shadow during casts etc because in the end its usually me on the top of the scoreboard due to staying alive and stockpiling frags and caps. Tviqs and my chemistry is really good outside of the game, however in-game we barely have any cuz of our different tasks and playstyle. As i said he is the suicidal “heropicks” player and I am the defensive cleanup scout.
Chaplain : Do you have any interest in games outside of TF2 and, if so, have they shaped you as a player in any way?
Smzi : TF2 is the only game i ever played competitively and also the first FPS game i really played. Atm i have 3 games installed; TF2,dota2 and borderlands. I play dota2 occasionally but i dont think that i can actually take anything from that game which would help me to improve my TF2 performance
Chaplain : OK, quick fire questions, just say the first thing that pops into your head:
Epsilon :: decent
dox :: great support <3
Favourite beer :: Augustiner
Crack Clan :: first top team
MÃ¼esli :: milk
KnoXx :: quote “you focus me like bitch”
Pancakes :: cinnamon
BFF :: RIP
Tidehunter :: 100 percent winrate
TF2 pub :: scout
Chaplain : Thanks for answering all my questions, good luck next season!
Finishing second in the Premiership was bittersweet for me. Iâ€™m sure the other guys in the team will tell you that I was a great achievement, but I had my heart set on that number one spot. When it came down to it in the Grand Finals our players were on an equal footing with Epsilonâ€™s but our strategy and decision making let us down.
Our approach and preparation for the seasonâ€™s fixtures has been something I have been proud of, so it was quite painful to see us lose on that sort of strategic level. We took a lot of risks in our aggressive positioning and our middle fights, but every game we play we learn something new and I look forward to incorporating some new ideas in Season 14.
Beyond my own discontent our story this season has been a great one for the fans, made all the more accessible by the vision and effort put in by dox. I really loved the fact that even the non-TF2 Crack Clanners were watching our games and supporting us all the way; as sickly sweet as it sounds, itâ€™s really nice to be part of a community that cares!
I’d like to thank our guys for really putting together something special — I don’t think anyone watching Crack Clan in the last couple of weeks had “stifling yawns” on their TF2-problems-I’m-having-list — I know there’s less-biased people than myself that were totally thrilled to see a team pull together and fight for position pulling out underdog, comeback wins from back’n’forth scenarios. Awesome stuff guys, you exceeded expectations and you were the best team to watch and cheer for, thanks for the additional support and letting this Canuck in to your lives 🙂
Of course none of this would have been possible without the total amount of support from everyone involved: ETF2L to provide a competitive vehicle (and admins!), Vanilla as the community voice, the coverage from the shoutcasters, authors and, of course, our honoured opponents. The fans, the punters, the swarm that tunes in to watch (rather than play!) and the ones that throw out both the jeers and the cheers — thanks for keeping TF2 spectator-friendly and full! Everyone combined has put in a staggering amount of time, energy and enthusiasm in to yet another season of the game that Valve just doesn’t seem to consider as a competitive title, let’s keep it up!
Last but not least, a few special mentions: thanks huhy for your streaming and support, also a big high5 to Frymaster who went above and beyond and provided us with legendary support for his mumble bot which facilitated the sharing of some of the most private moments of our team with you. And, of course my blood and my allegiance to my Crack Clan brethren: over 14 years of this, over 5 years with TF2, from the I-took-time-off-from-work-to-watch-this through to the h5ing massive. Thanks so much for keeping it all going!