Split 1 of the League of Legends Oceanic Pro League has now come to a close, with the Chiefs winning the finals in a three to nil fight against the Dire Wolves. Before they flew off to Turkey to compete in the International Wild Card Invitational, I got the chance to speak to four of the Chiefs – Swiffer, Rosey, Swiperr and Spookz, about their experiences within the OPL and what’s next for them.
Jayden: Congratulations on the finals win! How does it feel to be the champions of the first split of the OPL?
Swiffer: I don’t think it has really kicked in yet, for me anyway. We kind of won and were just numb, and I wondered whether this would be the way we’d feel till we got to Turkey – this surreal experience just lingering. We were all pretty exhausted by 11pm, just drained with headaches.
Spookz: I was pretty excited at first – I broke into a cold sweat after we won. After that it was pretty chill, I don’t think it’s really kicked in completely for us.
Jayden: So Swiffer, you were crowned Most Valued Player (MVP) for the entire OPL split 1, how are you feeling about that win?
Swiffer: MVP is just such a trivial thing because every part of a team needs to work in order for us to do well. I don’t feel deserving of it at times, even when I say everything to the contrary, but everyone really deserves the MVP award. Without anyone one this team I wouldn’t be facilitated in any way to be able to win that title. It still feels good anyway!
Jayden: Some of the games you played in the finals were a little more cautious than usual, what were some of your strategies and thoughts for taking on these matches?
Spookz: I think particularly game three we were more cautious, we were more playing not to lose as oppose to winning. I feel in game one we went in with a better plan, and game two we had a really nice pick with Nautilus and Tiamat, but in game three we were really defensive. I feel like we fell behind a bit.
Swiffer: The Dire Wolves are notorious for their core rotations – and we tried to really punish that in games one and two. By game three it just felt like we were trying to plug a leaky boot the entire game. We felt like we were one step behind the entire game, but then we managed to come back and win which was great
Jayden: Taking the first match has got to be a pretty good confidence boost, what was it like coming out of the first match with a win?
Spookz: In the first match I think our level 1 set us on a really good footing for the rest of the series. We had planned this level one in scrims, and for it to pay off here was a really big confidence boost that gave us the momentum we needed for the rest of the matches.
Jayden: We saw some really great plays from both sides, were there any real highlights for you guys?
Swiffer: Stealing the dragon and stealing the blue buff, definitely. But our team fighting was probably the highlight, especially in game two.
Jayden: Were there any surprises in the Dire Wolves’ plays?
Swiffer: Not really, they played pretty much the same way they have throughout the OPL Split. One of the caster’s noted that the games were quite strange to cast cause the Dire Wolves hadn’t really adapted their gameplay, so it was like casting all the games we’d played against them before.
Spookz: From the beginning we knew one of the Dire Wolves’ weaknesses was that predictable playstyle. They played like we expected really.
Rosey: It felt like they hadn’t adjusted to the new meta, so I feel like we had that advantage from practicing a lot of the current meta champions, one of the reasons we probably had a better draft.
Jayden: Now that you’re all headed off to Turkey, what do you hope to get out of the experience and how do you feel like you’ll play over there?
Rosey: In the next week or so before the games we should get a lot more practice time in, but hopefully we’ll play better than we did in the finals and really put on something special for Oceania.
Spookz: I think that’s the main goal, we really just want to represent Oceania well. We feel that right now Oceania really hasn’t got the best reputation for quality of play, but we really want to performs and represent as well as we can.
Jayden: With the success of the streams and trending hashtags on twitter, how do you feel about the Oceanic scene right now? How would you like to see it develop?
Swiffer: I didn’t expect the final to get that amount of viewers, but I guess I’d like to see it grow bigger and better. As players, we obviously want that as well so we get more recognition for what we do.
Spookz: It was a nice surprise to find out the viewership from last night, and I think Riot Oceania is doing a great job growing the scene. They feature us on the client, which is really cool, and they just really help to get our reputation on a global scene. It’s really only going to improve from here.
Jayden: Thanks so much for your time, best of luck in Turkey!