Blitzkrieg Masters Amsterdam 2018 - Interview with Team Tilted

One of the many European teams onboard for the Blitzkrieg Masters in Amsterdam is Team Tilted, a newer team ready to prove itself. Though honestly, it doesn't matter how 'new' a team is; one month is a long time to prepare for an event, especially after the practice exercised at qualifiers. Consisting of the following roster:  aerox, fanCy, dakkaz, jackis and RAIVZ are excited to prove themselves for the event. We reached out to the team and Boudewijn "aerox" Verleg happily let us in on a few replies in the upcoming interview. 

1.) How are you preparing yourselves for the upcoming event, the first ever Battalion 1944 Major?

We are a relatively new team, but have individually all been involved in the top end of different gaming scenes for several years now. That meant that we quickly identified our weak spots after just a few weeks of playing together. We’ve decided collectively to spend a few of the remaining weeks solely hammering out those weak spots with minimal work on areas of our game that we feel confident in. 

After those weeks of fixing our issues, we hope to successfully integrate our improvements into our overall game-plan and focus all our efforts in the remaining weeks on molding everything we’ve learned into a cohesive whole and working on our game in general, as opposed to meticulous specifics. 

2.) For how long has your team been waiting for an opportunity to play Battalion 1944 at this level?

I don’t think we’ve necessarily ‘waited’ to play at this level. It’s a natural culmination of everything the players have been doing all along. Pretty much every player in our team has played at the top end of the scene from the get-go, so for us if we’re being very levelheaded, this is simply a LAN with all the top tier teams. No different than what you’d expect from any other top LAN. Obviously it carries extra prestige and an extra large incentive due to the sizeable cash prize, but at the end of the day we can just see it as a LAN. A LAN we want to perform at, mind you, but a LAN nonetheless. 

3.) What are your goals heading into the event? What placing are you aiming at?

There should only be one goal when heading into an event like this and that’s to win the whole thing. Anything less and you might as well not go. Having said that, as long as I’m pleased with our performances at the end of the LAN, it’s not that important where we finish up. We will give it our all and see where the chips will fall. 

4.) What was your experience in the online qualifiers? Where there any negatives and positives you’d like to point out? 

Overall, our experiences were okay. Due to the volatile nature of the game, with multiple players switching team and whatnot, it was very hard to make accurate seedings. I think that may have hindered a few teams down the line, but I do not envy the position of The Plays whatsoever; it’s a hard job to do. 

Of course, the downside to online qualifiers, especially in a game as new as this with no demo system, was that there were ample opportunities for people to cheat their way into the qualifier. I’m not sure if anyone did, but the whole episode with nieSow certainly showed how flawed the concept of an online qualifier is. I understand why they did it, but I’d be remiss not to make mention of it. 

5.) From the online qualifiers, what is your team’s judgement on the level of competition at this time in the title’s lifespan? How much room for improvement is there? 

The competition, seemingly, is pretty high already. The game has been out for roughly 6 months and already there’s a very clear divide between skilled teams and lesser teams. I think the game will continue to evolve and so will the skill of the players. The early players of a game such as CoD 4, when contrasted with the players at the end of that game’s lifespan, look like they’re less skilled and I think that trend will be visible in Battalion as well. So I would say that I think there’s a lot of room for improvement because players always improve. People will find new ways to play the game, to use specific tricks and improve their aim. The game won’t stop evolving. 

6.) If not yourselves, what teams form the top competition for the first place spot?

I would expect to see CRG, Demise, Avenue, Entropy and EndPoint all be contenders for the title. All these teams have individual quirks that separate them from the pack and I think we will see those little things be the breakthrough in many of the games that will follow. Having said that, I have almost no information on the North American teams, so of course, they can come out swinging and surprise a lot of teams. 

7.) Do you plan to keep competing in Battalion 1944 after the Major is finalized?

As long as there’s something worth competing for, I will definitely keep playing. The problem is that this goes for many teams, so if there’s nothing to play for, we might see an exodus of teams and that would be catastrophic for the game. I just hope that Bulkhead has a clear vision for how they’re going to attract casuals, as that will be the lifeblood the game needs to keep going. Impressive LANs like this are nice to have, and as long as they keep coming people will keep playing, but I don’t know how sustainable it will be. 

8.) How do you view the updates which have recently hit the title? Have they all been general improvements?

Most of the updates have been very positive and have definitely added to the Battalion experience. The one thing that bothers me, however, is that Bulkhead seemingly subscribes to the Riot Games method of nerfing. Once they notice that a weapon is too strong, they nerf it into the ground and slowly build it up from there. Coupled with the economy system, long range weapons have been punished heavily and as a result, the meta dictates only a handful of weapons for both sides that can be seen as viable. Hopefully, these issues get addressed in the coming weeks. 

9.) What would you change, if you could, in Battalion 1944 mechanics, maps and weapons? 

I would overhaul the economy system, to where a coin will be given to a player for a kill and another coin will drop on the floor that you can pick up as is currently the norm. Maybe adjust the cost of weapons by 1.5 and maybe increase the kill rewards. If we take CS as a blueprint, if you’re stacked on money, you can buy a ridiculous arsenal for at least three, maybe even four rounds straight. In Battalion it’s not unfeasible to win six rounds in a row, lose one and then have to eco. 

I would also change some of the nerfs to the sniper rifle. There were two major issues plaguing the weapon I feel. One of them was that the weapon was too accurate in mid-air when not fully zoomed in, and the other factor was that the gun zoomed in a bit too quick, which meant that when you would do a running jump, you would be fully zoomed in before you hit the apex of your jump. This made it too easy to fly around the map with the sniper and make it almost impossible to be countered, especially if you have good aim. Just the accuracy and the zoom in time alone would be perfect nerfs I feel. 

The last thing I would change is having a look at the tagging system. When you invest so many coins into weaponry like a Kar or a sniper, you want to do damage, but I feel that tagging is happening too often. If you hit the arms or lower legs, sure, have it count as a tag. But just because the model is holding its arms in front of its body when aiming down the sights, doesn’t mean the rifler should be punished for hitting what would otherwise be a clean bodyshot. 

10.) Any advice for those Battalion 1944 rosters which are struggling to reach the level of competition needed for the event? 

Keep practising and either choose to fix your flaws or perfect your strong points. You can choose to play your opponents game, or your own and both have its perks. Just don’t try to hamfist a strategy that’s not working for you because you’ve seen other people succeed with it. Play to your own strengths or your opponents’ weaknesses and go from there. 

It seems that many teams are neck-deep into preparations; everyone's 'hammering' their slate clean to maximise their chances for the event. Will Team Tilted manage to stomp out the other top EU competition? We'll find out at the event! Thanks again to aerox for the quick interview, specifically. 

Posted by Gabriel Sciberras on 10th September 2018, 20:51

I'm Gabriel - 17 year-old student attending a sixth form with a little free time on his hands. I've been working with Gamers.com.mt for a roughly a year now - spreading my interests in technology, gaming and writing over the platform along with interviews and hardware reviews. All constructive feedback is appreciated. Thanks for reading!

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Blitzkrieg Masters Amsterdam 2018 - Interview with NoNames

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Blitzkrieg Masters Amsterdam 2018 - Interview with Entropy Gaming

Entropy Gaming, consisting of the following roster:  uzuma, dltr, zlatan, k1aStaR and sus , formed from the remnants of DefuseKids and always looked dangerous due to the individual capabilities. After a team change following a disappointing finish at Gallantry Budapest, the team has plenty of time to integreate their recent changes and perform well at the Blitzkrieg Masters. To learn more, we interviewed Axel  uzuma Maes on behalf of his team.  1.) How are you preparing yourselves for the upcoming event, the first ever Battalion 1944 Major?  After our disappointing finish at Gallantry earlier this year, we discussed the things that went wrong and the things that could have gone better. Our biggest challenge was to stop playing against ourselves and to keep the atmosphere positive at all times. The recent replacements, picking up k1aStaR and sus, helped out incredibly, as there’s a lot of extra positivity in our lineup. 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Where there any negatives and positives you’d like to point out? Unfortunately, the qualifiers were in the weekends, so for some teams, it was hard to play. Luckily, we managed to qualify during the second week which gave us time off on the weekends to spend with friends, girlfriends and family. I did like the system though; five different qualifiers where two teams qualify. All the teams who qualified deserved their spot and I’m glad we’re going to have an event this soon with the current best teams in the world. 5.) From the online qualifiers, what is your team’s judgement on the level of competition at this time in the title’s lifespan? How much room for improvement is there?  There’s a skill gap between some of the qualified teams in comparison to others, but in the end, as the game is still in development and not everything has been discovered yet, I expect some upsets in Amsterdam. The best team will be the team which plays together and reads the opposition better than the other teams- they will take the trophy home undoubtedly.  6.) If not yourselves, what teams form the top competition for the first place spot? Comrade Gaming, Demise and Endpoint and hopefully Method, if they manage to sort their lineup out are at the top of the list for me.  7.) Do you plan to keep competing in Battalion 1944 after the Major is finalized?  Absolutely. As far as I know, everyone in Entropy enjoys the game big time. Major update two has been a step in the right direction. I hope the game grows in numbers though because we’re 31 days away from the major and it’s quite hard to find decent public games on a regular base. 8.) How do you view the updates which have recently hit the title? Have they all been general improvements? In general, all changes were improvements in my opinion. There are still a lot of things, including the economy system, that need refinement. I do have some questions about why Bulkhead launches updates close to events. The MU2 update went live 3 days before Gallantry whilst teams had been playing together and stratting MU1 for 3-4 months. At the start of September they'll launch MU2.5, introducing some huge changes to player models and movement. I do hope it’s not going to influence the game as much as MU2. So in general, yes, I appreciate the updates. The timing of launching the update(s) could be a lot better though. They could launch MU2.5 after the World Championship for example, but I’m not a part of Bulkhead and I’m sure they have their reasons to launch them at those moments. 9.) What would you change, if you could, in Battalion 1944 mechanics, maps and weapons?  Weapons. I would make it more of a Kar98 - M1 game and get rid of the SMG meta. On some maps, SMG’s are very overpowered in comparison to the other guns. You need to have an A-game on the Kar98, M1, Gewehr or Carbine to compete against a Thompson or MP40, and still, it’s a 50/50 gamble for each gunfight.  Maps. Most of the maps have been balanced out, we’re going to start stratting Invasion soon. I’m really curious as to how the map has changed and about the new plays people can make. Mechanics. The movement feels great right now. I’m kind of disappointed that they will take out crouch jumping in MU2.5. In my opinion, it adds another dimension to the game. In CS:GO and Call of Duty 4 there were some jumps that were hard to master. It’s something you have to put the time into. In my honest opinion, getting rid of it reduces the skill gap slightly. 10.) Any advice for those Battalion 1944 rosters which are struggling to reach the level of competition needed for the event?  Analyze the things that go wrong or went wrong in the past. Make those things a point of focus and work hard on them, both in-game and out-game. There’s a lot of highly skilled people in this game and the strength of the current teams is going to be nowhere near as good as the best team in a couple of months. Work together, talk to each other, have open communication and stay together. The game in my opinion, is a raw diamond and I hope new talent starts showing up fast. If your team hasn’t qualified for the major, don’t give up, please. There’s going to be plenty of events in the future. Good luck to everyone! Despite the recent change, uzuma, the 23-year-old player, is confident in his team's ability to perform in the upcoming event and potentially win it all. His comments on the skillgap are quite interesting, as of right now, the skillgap is quite narrow; we're receiving all types of answers for question six! Sadly, one team will place 16th and one will place first, that's just the nature of competition.  We'd like to thank uzuma for the interview! 

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