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  In a Blaze  2007-03-08  
In lack of interviews this season i decided to do one with Finnish newcomer team in a blaze, after some chatting we managed to come up with pretty nice amount of text. I hope you enjoy :)

1. Well, lets start with the basics, tell us a little about yourself, gaming backgrounds et cetera!
henri: Well I, myself and me have been playing online games since the early days of QW. Back in '96 I, myself and me started playing QW with keyboard only. Then we played some years QWDM and QWTF, and started the path to glory as a CS player. CS top3 clans weren't enough, and back to the basics as a QWDM player. Then another try back in something 2003 as a cod and cod2 player. Europe was conquered, Russia as colony, and then back to QWDM...as an In a Blaze player. And I am almost quarter century old, and have scenic-like dressman body. (Btw, I have played like last 7 years in the same clans with quinn, little boring maybe?)

rage: Hello! My name is Juha Laitinen, Iím 23 years old and I live in Jyvšskylš, Finland. In real life I'm a useless student, alcoholic and a heavy metal fan!
It all started back in 97? When you (fix) told me about this great online game QWTF. Well I tried it and it blew me away immediately. When QWTF started dying I thought that QWDM would be nice, played it for awhile, mostly 2on2, but I sucked ass :/ After that I tried everything from q3 to CS, but the fuckin Quakeworld got me on the dead eye and sucked me back somehow :D
Now am playing some 4on4 with my mates in ablaze (div6).

liplap: Howdy, fellahs. Jag heter Otto Koskela and I'm 22-year-old academic (=always 15mins late) student, living at ~30m≤ apartment at Oulu, Finland at the moment. First of all, I started online-gaming quite late, fall 1998 when henri's father installed an ISDN-connection to our home (Yes, never had a modem). Since that I started my pathetic online-gaming career on qwdm and qwtf, later cs, cod, etf etc. Somehow I never got into 4on4 games during first years of qwdm. Later on, moved to qwtf and played in some unknown clans which I can't even remember.
At high-school we played cs with henri and quinn and we did quite well in Clanbase also. Great time until they removed windows platforms and replaced them with linux. As henri and quinn, I'm also familiar with cod 1&2, but I never succeeded on that game either. Well, cut the crap. Now I'm playing with my IRL-friends qwdm at in a blaze and I'm looking forward to play some tight rounds and enjoying the greatness of Quakeworld physics (with 12ms tft).

quinn: Hi, my name is Mikael Oinonen and I hail from Finland. Iím 24 years old, married, got two dogs and I am mentally unstable postal worker, arenít they all? I started online gaming around -96/97, not sure about the accurate date, but the game was Quakeworld CTF.
Swiftly moved to TF once it really kicked off and played in teams like Gummybears, Downfall, Classic and Elšintarha.
After 7(?) years of active quaking I got into a game called Day of Defeat. I enjoyed playing it for few years in teams like spite and Troopers, and we achieved some success while having fun. DOD got under Valve Steam and it basically spoiled it all and I started looking for other games. I got back to the roots and played some QWDM with Qandrane (actually played only one official match during NQR5) but it didnít last. I jumped the Call of Duty -wagon in the end of 2003(?) and continued playing Cod -series until January 2007. I got fed up with the lotto aspects of the game and decided it was time to do some quaking again.
I have also done some community work, as I have been in Clanbase Crew as a mod/cup supervisor for years (not anymore though), was one of the founders of dayofdefeat.fi and callofduty.fi, and currently my only community task is the manager of Team Finland national teams under Clanbase.

2. Holy shit no need to get too emotional, but great stuff. So after all that infidel stuff with other games, how does the qw feel for you?
liplap: Let's put it this way: If I had to take a tattoo, I would take a big quad-style Q on my back.

quinn: How does the QW feel for me? Well... QW is the mother of all good in games after all. The creative freedom is so much wider in Quake than in any other game up to date so you just got to love it. Sure QW has some lotto aspects as well but they are not as fatal to the game experience as a whole.

henri: Well well. To get started with, in any other game, if you happen to be better than anyone else in the scene (like in my case particularly) youíre going to get thrown out as a cheater. There just arenít as good (and fishy poker players) scene as in QW... <3 Grass & Tuoppi... And what comes to engines of QW and for instance DOD or cod, the speed, the variety of movement and those things just get me sweating always when playing QW. Quakehici (c) and you all know why I keep using capitals when writing QW, but not with cod or DOD.

rage: after playing almost every fuckin online fps-game I think Quakeworlds engine is absolutely the best. Ill have to say that the movement in qw is outstanding.
Itís so smooth and fun to play that I think, thatís the main reason why I play qw :D
3. You must have seen lots of different kind of community shit leagues/cups/community pages etc... Over other scenes ... do you think QW lacks any vital stuff on this aspect, or do we simply have it all?
rage: I think the pro players should answer this one :D

quinn: Well, QW kind of dropped from the mainstream when they didnít get a long with Clanbase; after all, itís the worldís largest online-gaming site. It must have some sort of impact to not have the games broadcasted on a site that has over 1 million unique hits daily. So basically the LANs, streaming, game TVís etc. you lack the "eSportism" that all the other communities try to grasp. You need to be more open to new things, just for the sake of surviving.

henri: Well even though our friends seem to take me and Quinn as a professionals, we still haven't got any money of playing games as a daily basis, at least I haven't. Other games may offer gamer (not you Mr. timpuri) paychecks or hardware (like for us, some miceís and headphones and stuff), but quake lacks these sponsorships. But in my opinion, it's better to keep it that way. Some mainstream game-TV thingies and others don't know or even want to stream QW, because no1 really wants or has the guts to do so. Maybe some radical changes in scene habits would be refreshing, to get more players, and more activity for the game. LANs are best in the QW scene (at least Mindtrek+ mountain dew), even though the cash prizes are low, but it would be fixed when the majority of the LAN sponsors even knows what theyíre paying for. QW as its best, gets your heart bouncing like a rabbit in frenzy, and is like a drug for your mind, so it would be great to share it for the majority also.

rage: "LANs are best in the QW scene" Ill have to agree on that one, at least our own Camp David QW LANs have always been... well, interesting :D

liplap: Well, in my opinion, there's too much map-hate (no-dm6 etc.) in general. I have tried to keep open-mind for every so-called kenya -maps. Maybe too much, since no-one wants to play 2on2 skull anymore? :) Also I'm sick of dm2, dm3 and e1m2 even if I haven't played those maps as much as pros (Still wondering, what makes people play dm3 10 years in a row.). Or is it just the others are so much better on those maps, so I would like to try another map for the victory?
4. The way I see it, we need more players to the game, which of coz would come by some advertisement etc, but is it nearly impossible task to newcomers even with fps-gaming backgrounds (qw or any other) pickup with qw now after 10years? Skill level of the players? learning curve being pretty harsh, fast game play? Give me some opinions on these issues.
rage: yes, itís very hard for new players to get into this godforsaken game that people have played for over 10 years, but itís not impossible.
Juuso aka. Divn who plays in ablaze also started qw couple of months ago and he has learned ALOT and keeps getting better all the time.
I think the hardest part itís the fist-in-the-face phase when you start playing qw. You get owned and owned time after time, but when you get through that via dolorosa you will start loving the game and there's no fuckin turning back then :D

henri: well it is kind of harsh to newcomers for sure, as our clan witnessed it ourselves, when our pal Bnz, our clan leader that time, played few practice matches, and called it even right after. But players like divn and other newcomers with fps backgrounds, have proven that it arenít impossible, it just takes awhile to get into shape. Of course no1 is a blacksmith as they born,
So every1 of us in the scene, have had several hours before getting in our present shape. I would like to encourage the newcomers, to play even if it's little boring sometimes to get 100 - -1 scores, but it gives you aspect from the movement and stuff.

bnz "noob vs. quake" : I actually tried the game for several days, going through almost every friggin bunny/trick jump map there is but always ending with the same result: LAVA.
So now I play wow, got 70lvl epic matafaka druid and it kicks ass! "Fuck it all, fuck this world, fuck everything that u stand for, donít belong, donít exist, donít give a shit, and donít ever judge me."

liplap: Couple of days ago, I showed the new awesome quake1 movie kyu.one to my friend. He got very excited and wanted to try out game itself. The installation was smooth since fquake -package. I introduced the game modes and basic commands to survive on game servers. Of course, there's a huge gap between skills shown on fragmovie and on the movement of newbie who's learning bunnying. He lost his interests. I think to start playing QW you need undefined characteristics which keeps you better and better even if you are getting, as rage said, 100 - (-1) rounds at the beginning. The fist-in-the-face phase could be your end of QW career.

quinn: I must say I am a bit more pessimistic, or realistic, on this subject than my clan mates. I donít see any great future ahead for Quake, and I guess nobody really does, itís just a small glimpse of hope that we try to feed. Why? The game is great, the game physics are superb, but it lacks the smell of fresh and new that attracts the current gaming generationís attention.
Also the steep learning curve. Todayís youth is not known for its patience; on the contrary, everything must happen right now. Therefore they donít posses the willpower to take the beating that is required to get good at Quake today.
5. Is there anything we can do then, to make it more easier for newcomers, or we just doomed? Cursed to suffer slow painful death without a hope of resurrection? As we know itís a fact that number of active qw clans keeps shrinking every year.
rage: I think we are doomed, just like in dm2 if you have kippo against you...i think thereís 3 things that will help you entering the world of quake.
1. Watch demos. Youíll learn some nice tp stuff and some hit points in map etc.
2. Tutor wouldnít hurt either. If you play 4on4 with some good player on your team who gives you and your teammates some advises what to do etc. youíll get a better picture whatís going on. At least it helped me (thanks to you)
3. Play qw. A lot.

henri: rage said all that there is to say. Thereís not any other path to glory, than play qw - continuously.

quinn: There is tons of stuff you can do to make it easier. First of all, you have already lowered the bar by couple thousand meters by creating that simple eZquake -setup package.
Thatís how to get started yes, but then again if the newcomers bang their head against a ten ton dm2-wall, they loose interest. So in my opinion there should be more variety in the map pool. It would tear the skill gap into a bit lower level, as most of the skill the QW community possesses is so called crystallized skill which comes from routines and know-how.
Help newbieís, give them space, donít bully them out. Tutorship, like rage said, thatís important.
Creating reasonable divisions in leagues, making sure that there is no "misplacements" in them, it makes it much more feasible for newcomers to gain some ground.
Will QW die? Sure. Everything has a life-span. I still believe Quake has many active years ahead. Like in NQR5 (?), the number of signups surprised the organizers. The activity goes up and down so no reason to get jumpy at this point.

liplap: Best cheat of all: watch and learn how others play.
6. Okay, lets move on before there arenít anything to move on to, For most of you NQR10 has been first 4on4 tourney where you play as active in other words... serious tournament, you got 1-6 record on games... any comments on that? :D
quinn: 1 out of 7 games... well that isnít bad. IT REALLY IS NOT! Seriously, itís what I expected it to be. Some tough games, some not so tough, but the most important thing on this season is to gain some experience. After all, itís been several years again since I last played Quake, I am happy that we reached at least one victory from this season. Luckily there are still games to be played. In the future... Well, I believe we will seize the scene! :>

henri: well the only comments I am going to give for this question particularly, is that our team is young (Iíve played 11 years and so on) as a team, and we're getting better every day.
There are always some clans in divisions lower than they should be. But that's only bad habit quake scene has. As in other games people try to get to the Eurocups and get their names to history as great clans, in quake every now and then, will be a div0-div3 men playing in lower divisions...
Seems like they're searching their self-confidence, with the blood of the newcomers.

rage: Sorry, I was wanking. What was the question again? (and when I repeat myself: )
We have played much better than I expected. I think henri and me are the only ones who have really played 4on4 before. quinn, liplap and divn have done really nice work learning so much in so little time. NQR has been really nice prac to us and in EQL we will claim more scalps! You have my word :D

liplap: Games been great. I never expected that we would win any round, but look what came out! Really looking forward to EQL. And the team play keeps getting better and better, beware!
7. So we can expect more good performances on upcoming EQL5? Do you think their league structure will suit you better than NQR`s "big merged division systemĒ ?
henri: in my opinion, the EQL divisions r much better, because the right clans play against right opponents, and the games will be tighter. And NQR have been our time in Currahee. EQL5 will show how capable we actually are.

quinn: Well, to be honest, I am not used to play in lower divisions. In every game I have played, I have aimed to the top. This may sound egoistic to some but itís just the way I like to play. To have fun is of course a very important factor but so is reaching goals and progressing. These two aspects donít shut each other out; you can have both, believe me.
So I am trying to say that I will be disappointed if we donít show progress in the EQL5 season. The division system is leveling the playground a bit but you got to beat every opponent in some point to get to the top. So bring it on.

liplap: Never played EQL, sounds like fun and tastes like apple? Well... Never mind. Next question.

rage is still watching Dream Quest it seems :)
8. Time will tell us how its going to be :) In the meanwhile, is it only 4on4 you enjoy? I know you have entered to NNQL 2on2 tourney as well with 3 teams in fact... how's that going?
quinn: 4on4 is the juice and 2on2/1on1 is the meat of the fruit to me. Mine and divns NNQL career got a bumpy start as we lost our first game and divn is without internet connection for few weeks now, but, all is well, moving forward.

henri: well I'm playing NNQL with rage, my long time fuckbuddy, err, I mean quad buddy, and it's going pretty well actually. We have even won one game I think, and it's getting hotter2handle us everyday. But still, the 4on4 is where the mind is when having a 2on2. 1on1 is just not my game type, it's all dm4 and dm2, reminds me of cs. maybe more maps, and then it would get interesting. Even in 2on2, I hate dm4, 'cos Swedes usually want to play without quad.

liplap: For a long time 2on2 dm6 was my cup of tea, but this spring has showed that itís nothing compared to a 4on4! Kenyas rules!

rage: 2on2 is fun if you have nice opponents and nice maps. I like much more kenya-maps in 2on2 because I am kind of bored to dm2, dm4, dm6.
Donít know why people donít like them so much :c Kenya 2on2 league anyone? I think we all agree that 4on4 is the way qw should be played.

henri: amen.

quinn: salute.
9. Now that you have been following QW-scene for sometime, does QW -people have any special kind of attitudes when comparing to other scenes, or are we nice people? :)
quinn: Overall itís a nice community, a bit narrow-minded occasionally but I hope that will change in the future.

henri: well scene is fine, people are nice (and fishy poker players), but the TB3 attitude makes it not so nice occasionally.

liplap: I think QW is the greatest scene with all its minor problems.
10. How about cheating issues, in games like cs/cod those are huge issues, but how do you see it in qw...as I believe cheating is really a small margin among the scene?
henri: yeah, cheating is really a problem in those other games, but can't see it as a problem in QW. I bet there is some players with some kind of adjustments (no walls or something), but have not heard of any, except Prince DAVE of course.

quinn: As QW has a lot less lotto-issues than Cod & CS it reduces automatically the possibilities for claims of someone cheating. It is a lot easier in QW to see with bare eye if someone is using some external program than in those other games. So, QW is basically cheat-free in my eyes.

rage: I really want to believe that thereís not a single cheater in qw scene. I mean who would do a crazy thing like that? :c

liplap: Only thing what I'm concerned about is spectators telling locations of low-health enemies etc. at voice channels.
11. Ok this thing is getting way2big, but lets have some prediction game anyway, do you think anyone can step up again evil Slacker crew this season? And which one will have longer run on Ownage 1on1 tournament, fifi or gamer? (only Finns that are left) :)
quinn: Hah, well I believe its up to dedication and amount of practice. For what I see, SR is practicing (if they get pracs) more than the other top dogs and they will run away with gold. On the 1on1...well, if fifi starts/learns to hold back and stall the game, he will win but he wonít do that. Gamer seems to be more serious about 1on1 than fifi so my bet is Gamer will go further than fifi this season.

henri: Well of course only team to give an effort against DAVE and his merry men, is CMF in my eyes, as so many times earlier. And what comes to Ownage 1on1 -tournament, fifi should win, because of his style. He really shows how it should be played. In the other hand, mutilator has a style of his own and could take the whole tournament... only question mark is lbn, he really can make these fight tight. Timpuri has the skills, but does he have the guts?

liplap: I like fifi's style at duels. I hope he would beat shit out of everyone! And what comes to 4on4 its rabbit season, duck season, rabbit season, and duck season?

And after some blackmailing and serious threats rage decided to STFU.
12. Ok thanks for your time, any last shouts? Anything..?
henri: jag hatar smurffar. onnee Tuoppi. Vegeta keep up the good work. And donít forget to wash your teeth folks!

quinn: joko pelataa quakee? onks tšš shitti jo ohi?

rage: Nancy kun pussas Lšnnen-Jukkaa, Sally iski kyntensš Nancyn tukkaan. Nancy ja Sally...

liplap: "Eikun sekaan nyyttien, koeta šngetš"
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