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New players, same team: how Leeds plan to claw their way to the top

This split we’re going to bring you weekly interviews from a range of teams throughout the Overwatch Campus Clash.

I interviewed Zeke from University of Leeds team: “goats pls I need gm”, formerly known as “we goats agane”, the day after the split’s first matches. The Leeds Overwatch team, affiliated with Leeds Esports Society, began last academic year and veterans from back then Zeke, Maestro and Eggroll return this split to fight for the 2019 Spring title.

I began by asking how they came to their current roster. “So, a lot of it is the same roster that we had last year, but we had a lot of people coming through from the first years this year.” The team’s picked up hitscan player Chinchilla and ScottE77 is filling the main support role. “I’m the previous main healer but I’m not fully available anymore so he’s going to be taking over on main support.”

That said, there are some returning players such as Felmaw. “He stopped playing the game back when Brig came out but he’s coming back to the game now. He’s going to be picking up from CaptColton who’s retiring from Overwatch because he’s busy with third year stuff now”. Maestro also returns. “We’ve picked up DPS players but no new main tanks came through and he’s capable on Reinhardt and Winston, so he became our new main tank.”

I asked how they go about trialing new players for the team. “At the start of last semester, I put out a form asking everyone: what rank they were; what role they played; what heroes they played and to what rank they felt that they could play them. I understand that current SR isn’t necessarily how good you can perform in a team environment.”

“Everyone likes to have a laugh, but when it gets down to game time everyone’s really serious and making all the important callouts”

Zeke

Overwatch Campus Clash had started the day before and while I could see they went 1-1, I wanted to find out how the games were on the ground. “Our first game we played against a team from Loughborough but they were silver or gold so that wasn’t too difficult a game. Second game was against Underwatch and I’m pretty we got trounced in that game! So, it was from one extreme to another.”

In the Winter Overwatch Campus Clash, Zeke’s team finished in the top 3rd of teams. Bearing a pretty decent result for their first week in mind, what had changed since the previous split and how were they planning to climb even higher? “Everyone’s been on the grind, Felmaw has come back. CaptColton did leave sadly but they’re still both really good flex support players. We’ve basically just swapped out one strong flex support for another, but other than that the roster is still really strong.”

Team play

Quite often particular duos or other small groups turn out to work particularly well on Overwatch teams. I wondered what kind of dynamics were at play in the Leeds team. “Everyone likes to have a laugh and stuff but when it gets down to game time everyone’s really serious, making all the important callouts and that sort of thing. Like I said, I play main heal and I play for teams outside of the NUEL so I have a lot of shotcalling experience and I try and bring that through in our games as well.”

The team is obviously named after the widespread “goats” or three-three composition (comp) which has been making waves in the community for over half a year. However, Zeke believes that recent Overwatch patches might be changing that. “I’m not convinced it’s the best comp on the current patch outside of a few maps.” “I think it’s pretty beatable on most maps with like a Pharah-Sombra dive or something like that. But of course you need to have pretty talented DPS players to be able to take out the squishies or hack the right target without getting caught out. You also need your tank players to be able to play patiently so that they don’t get caught by the Brigitte stun and melted and stuff like that.”

Zeke does, however, still think that Overwatch League (OWL) teams will still stick to the more tried and tested comps. “I think in OWL it will still be goats because they don’t really have the time to experiment, they have to stick to what is going on. I think as well, it’s become sort of like a science really, recently. Like there was the leaked NYXL VOD, and there was also the Seoul versus Guangzhou show match. In both of those you could tell they were refining their goats from watching World Cup and even Contenders because that’s where it became a real hard science.”


The name

Finally, I thought I’d end with their current name, and how they came to it. “It wasn’t that we were dropping the XQC reference. I don’t know if you follow EU Ranked on Twitter but they put out EU Ladder Bingo. There’s a lot of references to people forcing goats and it’s kind of an EU ranked meme that everyone just says “go goats” in high ranks so I just sort of went off that.”

Many thanks to Zeke and the rest of go goats pls I need gm – we wish them luck in the coming weeks. I look forward to interviewing more teams over the course of the season. You can catch more Overwatch Campus Clash games tonight at 7pm on twitch.tv/thenuel!

-NUEL Sagiri

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