ShoT_UP shares his disappointment after First Strike and how the future will prove what teams are the real deal
Following Immortals loss to Team Envy on Day 1 of the North American First Strike event, Run It Back was able to speak with Andrew “ShoT_UP” Orlowski. ShoT_UP was unable to finish the UMG qualifier that saw Immortals advance to First Strike. Back with the team, the results were not what he expected. Read ahead to see ShoT_UP’s thoughts on his performance, as well as how some teams will fair as Valorant enters 2021.
*Warning: The following interview contains instances of adult language.*
Run It Back: First off, how are you feeling now, after having missed the qualifier due to illness?
ShoT_UP: I’m doing a lot better now. I was worried at the beginning of the series, but it wasn’t an issue. We’re good now.
Run It Back: One of your teammates mentioned the team being together for only 2 months and being a fresh face on the scene. How does it feel being a newer team and a part of this high profile competition?
ShoT_UP: It feels good to have qualified. There are plenty of teams that are “Tier 1” that didn’t qualify. I think in the coming months, we are going to learn who actually is a Tier 1 team or just has a Tier 1 org. There are a few teams I have in mind, but I won’t name them. But yeah, it felt good to have qualified. It was an important thing for us. That being said, though, what happened to us today with Team Envy, I’m not going to ascribe it to being a new team. We 100% had it in us to beat Envy and it sucks that I’m here saying, “We had it in us” instead of having actually done it. It’s such a shit position to be in. It feels terrible. That’s the truth. I know we could have beaten them and we just didn’t.
Run It Back: You were at the top of the leaderboard, the top fragger, on both Icebox and Ascent. What does it mean to you to put up those numbers for the team? And how do you feel having done that only for the outcome to be a 2:0 loss against Team Envy?
ShoT_UP: I mean, I’m glad that I didn’t do badly. At the same time, topping the leaderboard doesn’t mean you’re doing well. In the last match on Ascent, you look at my stats and think “He played well. It’s too bad his team couldn’t do it.” That’s what you might think after looking at that last map and seeing the stats. I think that I played super shit. The stats don’t reflect that. You notice the stats turn out looking not terrible.
You look at the stats and say, “Oh, he didn’t play terribly,” but I think I played terribly. Those stats are just not good enough for what I know I should have. On the Icebox match, I shouldn’t have had 13 kills. That’s super shitty. Maybe it’s the top of the scoreboard, but that’s not how good I am. It’s the same thing for Ascent. I shouldn’t have 22 kills, I should have 30 kills, or more than 30 kills. I just didn’t. It’s super shit. For me personally, it feels really bad, because I know I am better than what that was. It just sucks.
Run It Back: Do you already have plans to go back over the VOD and review that for future reference?
ShoT_UP: Definitely for Icebox, but I think we ascribe what happened today as just not playing normally. I think that’s correct. It’s definitely a simplistic view. On Icebox, I will say 100% we were not prepared enough. We picked it because a couple of scrims went really well against some teams that are in First Strike. Then we got in the game against Envy and they played a comp we have never played against. They played a way that we never played against. I think that showed.
In scrims, we were able to just run it down A and that would work. Icebox is a really large map and rotations take forever. I think its kind of five-man oriented. That was kind of the idea going in. We are 100% going to work on our Icebox more so we don’t just go A twelve rounds in a row. That was our game plan. We’re definitely going to work on that. The overarching issue, though, is that we should have won Ascent. We should’ve went to three maps and I think we would have won the third map if we were playing normally.
I’ll take the Icebox loss, but on Ascent, if we were playing normally, we would have taken it to a third map. We weren’t playing normally, though. We were playing kind of scared. We didn’t want to die. Including me. I’d say mostly me even. I play super volatile. You peek a tight angle at someone who is not peeking a tight angle, so you have to be faster than them. You have a harder flick to hit. I should be hitting those flicks. That’s not something that I should miss. That’s not something that I usually miss. We just need to work on that.
Run It Back: Now, moving forward, if you can speak for yourself or the team, how does Immortals feel about the upcoming Valorant Champions Tour?
ShoT_UP: We’re glad that they’re organizing events in a pretty quick manner. There aren’t super long breaks between important events. That’s one thing they are doing that is really helpful for the pro scene. We’re definitely really excited. It gives the opportunity to work on playing normally in matches that really matter. I think that’s our biggest issue right now by far. It bodes well for us as a team, I believe.
Gratitude goes out to ShoT_UP from Immortals for taking the time to discuss his thoughts and feelings following the First Strike event.
*Answers may have been altered slightly for the sake of clarity.*
Stay tuned to Run It Back for more player interviews and coverage of the different First Strike events around the world!