As the League of Legends European Championship (LEC) champions, Rogue swiftly take down everyone they face in the Group Stage. Gunning for the first step towards the big trophy, getting out of the groups, Rogue stands as the European (and Western) team most likely to succeed out of the Groups.
But they haven't faced the challenge of three international games in one day, and they are gearing up for it. If they do make it to the quarterfinals, they will have a road as treacherous as ever, with the prize at the end as glamorous as ever. We spoke with Rogue's bot laner Markos "Comp" Stamkopoulos about their games against GAM Esports, what they can improve on, his opinion on the Worlds meta, and much more.
Aykut Sapaz, BLIX.GG: Hello Comp, thank you so much for your time, and congratulations on your win against GAM Esports today. What are your thoughts and comments on the match-up?
RGE Comp: Hello, happy to be here first of all. What I would say about the GAM game, the only comment to give is about our early game. I think we completely had early game domination through the whole early game, right? So I’ll probably say we made some stupid mistakes during the middle game and the Nashor incident was for sure one of them. So I think what we take as a lesson from this game is that from this game that heading to the next ones, we should focus on improving our mid-game and we should be good to go.
BLIX: Do you think you will be able to fix the mistakes in your middle game according to yourself by the time you play the group matches or do you think you’ll improvise on the day?
RGE Comp: My personal opinion is that I don't think we necessarily need a lot of scrims or time to fix those things. It's the kind of thing that the most important thing about them is to just stay consistent because I'm pretty sure in the past we have not made mistakes like this in some games, but for jungle today, we did, right? So I think this game is mostly a reminder of those mistakes in the mid-game that we need to fix. We want to go head-to-head with the best teams.
BLIX: And you will have the chance to do so in the future, both on the mistakes and going against the best teams. I wanna ask about the draft: was there anything that surprised you or the team in general, like the first pick Victor or something else, maybe?
RGE Comp: To be honest, the Viktor first pick, in general, it's really random, right? But we kind of had some, we kind of scouted how the enemy team plays and all of this, and we all expected them to play Viktor today. We didn't expect it to be the first pick, but yeah, I mean, it is for sure really interesting to see their prios play, and we kind of prepared for it, so I don't think we were shocked or anything.
BLIX: And preparation pays off. You guys just won the game against GAM. If I'm correct, it was your first time playing a game against a Vietnamese team. And also the first time for the RGE organization as well. How was the feeling of playing against a Vietnamese team compared to other regions?
RGE Comp: I mean, it's hard to say. I cannot express the feeling, or I don't think there's a special feeling. For me, it's the same excitement to play whoever that's not from Europe since it would be a new experience for me. I'm for sure very glad to play against all of these players and teams, so yeah, I mean, it was a nice feeling, as usual.
BLIX: Was there a difference in their game plan or their game style that you didn't expect as a region?
RGE Comp: I wouldn't say so. I think we're pretty much aware of how the game should be played out and we kind of knew that control was in our hands since the beginning of the game, so I think we're really confident, and we didn't have to overthink stuff.
BLIX: That is great to hear. You mentioned the other EU teams in the tournament; what do you think about their performances so far?
RGE Comp: I think Fnatic has been great in their first two games. I mean, it was kind of unexpected their first win against T1. But this group will be, I think, heading into the next week, we can for sure tell which are the best teams because I think group stages are so random sometimes with the best of ones and stuff, you cannot really tell which one is the best team and all of this so I mean I'm for sure happy for hem and G2 can easily get out of this group also if they prove themselves versus the clearly the best of teams like DK and JDG for now.
BLIX: Well, we'll see how they fare against them. I wanna talk to you about the meta. During Worlds, we've seen a lot of different champions played. We've seen a lot of champions be priorities for other teams. Who do you think is the most powerful champion of Worlds meta? No spoilers; I don't wanna leak your draft or your prep.
RGE Comp: I mean, considering the first days of group stages, I would probably say the most powerful pick right now should be Maokai or Azir. Just think those champs are just very good overall for team play. For competitive matches, it's like they bring so much to the table, either initiating fights or just winning Lane and scaling very well into team fights and all of this, so I'll probably say those two champs as my top two right now.
BLIX: Many people have mentioned those champs alongside Aatrox and Sejuani. But the most interesting one I've heard was Seraphine from UNF0RGIVEN. Do you agree that it's a good pick? He mentioned that it would be the best pick in the right comp.
RGE Comp: Seraphine is for sure a good pick. She has not been changed; even since the summer split, some teams could easily play it whenever. It's just, it's the type of thing, it's the type of champ that you need to have an excellent team comp on your top side if you wanna really make it work. Because from the bot side, you, most of the time, don't really have any agency. You're just kind of a farming bot where you're going to teamfights later, and you basically just help your team to teamfight better, like you give shields and heals. You have your roles which are pretty good in some comps, so. I can for sure agree that the champ is good but saying that that's the best if you build it around team cop, I would highly disagree because I think if you play versus top-tier teams from even LPL or LCK, they can easily abuse Seraphine bot lane and Seraphine bot lane, she can be very useless for a very long time.
BLIX: That is very insightful thank you. I wanted to ask you about your world's experience so far. How has life been traveling to Worlds? Waiting for games and how has the gaming area, staying area, and all that been?
RGE Comp: It's been great for now. I think the first days were very rough on me because I wasn't getting enough sleep since we came here, since I had to adapt to the time zone here. Also, we had a lot of media stuff to do, like waking up early on the first days. You could easily see from my scrim performance that I was not in form yet. Still, at least for myself, I was confident that basically, I knew that this was not what I would be showing during the official matches at Worlds, so I just knew that I had to get to control my schedule and yeah just basically be ready for when the right time comes.
BLIX: And you guys have been ready, apparently, as we've seen. Thank you so much; I want to ask my last question: what would be your message to Rogue fans out there who are hopeful for their team to advance into quarterfinals, semifinals, and further?
RGE Comp: To all the Rogue fans and also, I guess from now on, KOI fans, I would probably say I think we're gonna make you proud, we're working really hard, and I think we'll make the region very happy.
BLIX: Thank you so much for your time. Good luck in your future matches, and I'll see you hopefully in better, higher standings. Thank you so much.
RGE Comp: Thank you, have a good day.
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