Coming fresh off of their second placing from ACL Sydney, Ex Dreamers (formerly Dignitas OCE) have recently signed as the second team to represent Team Immunity, looking to dominate the Australian League of Legends scene. Both teams placed first and second respectively at ACL Sydney. Ex Dreamers displayed an outstanding performance against the original Team Immunity squad, showing the rest of the Oceanic region that they mean business. Despite being 1-0 down in the Grand Final, Ex Dreamers displayed elements of fighting back and are now focusing on upcoming tournaments such as CGPL and the Oceanic Regional Finals later on this year.
Team Immunity released a statement about the recruitment of the newest addition to the organisation earlier this week.
“… Team Immunity’s League of Legend division will have two teams. We feel as though the hard work shown by the ACL Sydney runner-ups aligns with the values we have come to demand of our players, and will be a perfect fit going forward.”
Today I sat down with members David “UberGiantsBro” Ubergang, Michael “Zahe” Dunn, Bradley “tgun” Seymour, Justin “JKSmithy” Smith, and Brandon “Claire” Nguyen.
First and foremost congratulations on being signed with Team Immunity as their second League of Legends team. How did this opportunity come about for you guys, after the departure of Dignitas and continuing independently?
JKSmithy: “tgun pretty much organized most of the move since he used to be on Team Immunity for Starcraft 2 and is quite close to the owner. After hearing what they had to offer, myself and the team were more than happy to fully make it happen and let tgun communicate between management and us.”
UberGiantsBro, JKSmithy, how is this pickup different from being a part of Frenetic Array? What does it mean to represent one of the best organisations in Australia once again?
UberGiantsBro: “ I think we are a little more excited to join Team Immunity than we were Frenetic Array, and that’s no disrespect to Fray who are awesome in their own right. However we know how well Team Immunity look after their players and we are eager to represent them well. Obviously this is a fantastic opportunity with a well founded organisation and I’m looking forward to it!”
JKSmithy: “One difference that is nice is that flights and accommodation is organized for us, eliminating the burden of having to plan for all these things when going to LAN events which allows to focus solely on our play. The biggest difference however will be the pressure of living up to the name and prestige that the other iM team have built up over the past two years. We will be training hard to live up to the legacy they have made as part of the iM org. The fact that Team Immunity believe in us and picked us up is extremely motivating and means a lot to the team.”
Do you think this new pickup will bring about opportunities to compete internationally alongside your other teammates at Team Immunity?
UberGiantsBro: “Maybe in the future there will be some opportunities to compete internationally (2015?), there is not many opportunities for the remainder of this year that I know of.”
Zahe: “Hopefully one day we will be able to travel abroad to compete.”
tgun: “I’m not too sure given the League of Legends scene. Internationally, there aren’t many events that are either qualified for (with an OCE spot) or open to all teams where the travel expenses aren’t covered by RIOT. However, if any such tournaments ever arise, being part of the premier Australian e-sports organisation surely can’t hurt our chances.”
JKSmithy: “I think it definitely will as with the proper support behind us, I believe we have the potential to be the best in the region and qualify for events such as Wildcards next year.”
Claire: ” I think that the chance to get an opportunity to compete internationally is something that you need to rightfully earn yourself. Although it does help having a great organisation back you up.”
tgun, you were known as one of Australia’s most fierce StarCraft II players playing for Team Immunity before you joined the League of Legends community. Do you feel a bit of Deja vu’ being back at your old organisation? How do you feel about representing Team Immunity for a completely different title?
tgun: “Feels awesome – like I’ve said before, I’ve followed Team Immunity since I was a kid. Being a part of the best Australian organisation is amazing, and it feels just as good the second time around.”
In the sense of mechanics, do you find there’s a big jump between the macro and micro style of gameplay that you’ve grown accustom to in StarCraft 2 compared to League of Legends?
tgun: “The big jump is team communication – everything else is easy.”
Moving over to you now, Zahe. Not too long ago you were a part of Your Soul Shall Chuffer. How does it feel to break away from your old team and represent arguably the best eSports organisation in Australia?
Zahe: “It feels amazing and I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to represent such an established organisation as Team Immunity. I look forward to making a good showing in upcoming events in the near future.”
Have you picked up on any similarities between you and your new teammates as opposed as to what you had whilst being on YSSC?
Zahe: “There are some similarities between the players of both teams, but mainly differences as each player is going to have their own unique playstyle/personality they have developed.”
Claire, you’ve been known amongst the Oceanic community as one of the strongest mechanical mid laners on the server. Having finally come of age, how do you think this reputation will impact into your team’s play?
Claire: “After having to sit on the bench for half a year due to age restrictions, it’s going to take some time to get back into it. But back when I played mid for the guys in the Frenetic Array days I felt like we were a strong team that always brought in good results, so give us a little time and I think i’ll warm up to top competitive play again.”
We see a lot of eSports athletes retire after they hit their mid 20’s as their ability to physically and mentally keep up with the game dramatically decreases. Do you find yourselves sticking around to continue with your careers, or do you find yourselves drawing a line at a certain age?
UberGiantsBro: “This ‘when do you hang up the mouse’ is an interesting question and one that I’ve put a lot of thought into personally, although I’ll keep it brief here for readability ;). After the whole dignitas thing and not making it into Autumn and with my brother leaving to pursue footy I was very close to giving up pro play (‘semi-pro’, realistically). However, with how invested I am into League of Legends I was not and am not satisfied with what I’ve achieved so far. As well as this, I’m still enjoying the game and feel like I’m improving and have a lot to improve on. Of course everyone has their age limit. I think mine will be when I find another good opportunity that consumes more of my time so that I can’t keep up competitively anymore.”
Zahe: ” I’m going to continue to play while the opportunity is still present and I feel at the top of my game.”
tgun: “I think it’s less about their ability to physically keep up and more about the rate at which people learn. You’re able to learn things much faster at younger ages; this means that although you feel like you’re pushing through the ceiling now, to a new player, that’s just going to be the basics. They’re starting off their career while you’re at your pinnacle — and the only place they have to go from their is up. As for drawing a line, who knows?”
JKSmithy: “I think at the very least until I finish university, after that I’ll need to seriously evaluate what I plan to do with work and if I have the time to commit to playing competitively. I’ve always been hyper competitive so if I’m able to I’d like to continue playing for as long as possible.”
Claire: “Honestly, I can’t even see myself in the mid 20’s, it’s so far away. I really enjoy playing League and I’m going to continue for as long as I can.”
Looking forward to the CGPL finals which aren’t too far away; what are you guys doing to prepare for the event?
UberGiantsBro: “To prepare for CGPL we are firstly fixing our scrim schedule after a couple of organisational changes that the new semester brings. We’re doing some scrims but it’s mostly solo and duo queue to get the mechanics up there and then a lot more scrims.”
Zahe: “Mainly just scrims, soloq, watching OGN/LCS vods and CS:GO.”
tgun: “Practicing a lot? Same old, same old.”
JKSmithy: “Just the usual, as many scrims as possible and research not only into the teams we will be playing but also the various other scenes around the world (trends etc.).”
Claire: “Scrims, scrims, and more scrims.”
Thanks for joining me today guys. Are there any final comments or shoutouts you would like to give?
UberGiantsBro: ” Thanks for the interview. Just a quick shoutout and thanks to Team Immunity as well as all my teammates (Serb you’re included mate) who are all top blokes (no jokes).”
Zahe: “Huge thanks again to Team Immunity and everyone who is supporting us to push forward.”
tgun: “Shoutouts to our wonderful sponsors here at Team Immunity, without them we wouldn’t be able to do what we do – Intel, Steelseries, Gigabyte, Geil, Benq & Antec.”
JKSmithy: “Big shoutout to my teammates for making this whole thing possible, we all went through a lot of disappointment over the past couple months but really pulled it all together to come back and show what we are really made of at ACL Sydney. Finally big shoutout to Team Immunity and all of its sponsors for committing to our team as well, extremely excited to represent them proudly!”
Claire: ” Yeah, shoutout to the teamspeak boys. :)”
You can follow the team on social media!
Images courtesy of Team Immunity and ACLPro.