LOUD, Brazil’s representative for the 2023 League of Legends World Championship, dropped their Group A winner’s match against PSG Talon 2-0. Although the Brazilian team opened the series on relatively equal footing with their PCS counterparts, their adversaries would ultimately snowball their lead in a manner they wouldn’t overcome.
As a result, LOUD now awaits their next opponent for their crucial Group A Decider Match, in which the winner earns a spot in the second phase of Play-Ins where a single best-of-five series win is needed to progress to the Swiss Stage of the competition.
Following LOUD’s loss to PSG Talon, BLIX caught up with head coach Lucas "BeellzY" Spinola to talk about his perspective behind the results and what made them happen, Brazil’s place relative to other minor and major regions in international LoL esports and more.
Facing PSG Talon
Pedro Romero, BLIX: Commiserations on the series against PSG Talon. What was the preparation like for them given it's one that you previously faced in MSI earlier this year and how did that play out from your perspective?
Lucas "BeellzY" Spínola: For PSG, throughout our scouting of them, we were looking that they were more of a range team rather than the skirmish one that they showed today. Even thoughed the showed more of a kind of skirmish draft yesterday against Rainbow7 on the first game, they weren't super comfortable with it and based on the PCS, they weren't really that type of team, right? The preparation for me was different because they showed completely opposite of what they actually played so I think that was the hard part, at least for the second game.
The first game was kind of stable up until the point where we lost. We were having a nice lead on top side even though we had some issues with jungle early on. I'm not blaming jungle in itself but [moreso] the map towards it. The second game was more towards the preparation in which we weren't really ready for what they showed. It was really different.
BLIX: And what did they show that essentially caught you off guard? What did they show that made the game play out as it did?
BeellzY: The thought process was that we were a team that brought a first pick Neeko back in the day so it wasn't an issue towards that and instead of that, we could play Kai'Sa or something like that if we wanted to because that's something that a lot of people was already seeing. But for me, the most part was towards them having a strong focus on jungle early on in the draft, right? They were banning Nocturne and Poppy and the part that they had early strong and solid solo laners kinda threw us off guard because that was not what we were expecting on the draft. So there was more towards that and the fact that they were actually trying to punish us with these early skirmish laners was something we weren't really prepared for, to be honest.
Looking ahead to GAM or R7
BLIX: Despite suffering this loss in the winner's match of this group, you guys will now await the winner of the GAM and Rainbow7 matchup. What are your thoughts on both of those teams as your potential opponent with a ticket to the next stage of Play-Ins on the line?
BeellzY: We didn't scrim against neither of these things. We only play the against the Marines on stage, so I think they're kind of a different team even though bot lane for Rainbow7 actually showed a little bit at least in the early-game yesterday. It's a lot different from the Marines because Marines really revolves around what Levi [Đỗ Duy Khánh] does on the game and Kiaya [Trần Duy Sang] actually putting up some HP leads and they do something towards it. So for me, I feel Marines have more chances to win because because of this dynamic. I don't feel like Rainbow7 can actually pull leads.
Even though their bot showed up, they didn't do anything with those leads yesterday, so for me, that's the biggest difference. Marines have a really solid top-jungle, and for Rainbow7, it's more of a standard team overall and they really are not expanding their leads. So for me, I feel Marines should win and it's rematch.
BLIX: Talking a little bit of the focus to the entire year in general, LOUD has stayed at the top of their game for the past three splits by winning CBLOL three times. Focusing on this year in particular, you mentioned a bit about facing PSG in MSI, but how have you viewed the team's progression from that point up until now? And in doing so, what has been the biggest thing that you focused on and, in essence, stressed on improving on the international level for this team?
BeellzY: Even though we switched a player—last year was Brance [Diego Amaral] as the AD Carry and now it's Route [Moon Geom-su]—it was basically the same team so the main focus towards going to the international events was more towards what fundamentals can we change and what do we need to actually see on the map to play for. In minor regions, at least in Brazil, teams actually try to focus more towards objectives and not really going for anything else. We were doing it last year—not as much like last year—but for the first split, we did a lot more because of some issues that we had when we switched ADCs but it went well since we won both [splits]. But when you go international and you have this kind of problem that you play only towards this timer, it's really hard because you miss a lot of windows.
The main focus towards all these internationals is to try to see a lot more of these windows and try to play for more gold rather than just objectives so you'll have more windows to actually play for and use matchups and individual skills so you can actually improve more. So actually abusing matchups, abusing the fact that you can collect some gold towards the matchups or something like this, that's basically what the international teams actually do. We saw today on the second game that it happened a lot. The first game was a little bit more stable, but in the last series, we showed a lot more towards the sort of things that we are actually doing so I feel it's mostly like this. It's like how can we see more of these windows and how players can actually communicate with each other to use this more.
BLIX: I talked to a few other people so far in this tournament about their perspective as to the difference between the lower region teams and the big region teams and one of the things that they highlighted was that the pace of their play is accelerated to a degree that the former have not been able to crack. What do you make of this sort of notion? Do you agree with it?
BeellzY: To be honest, it's really true, but I feel like it's mostly towards these things that I'm pointing out. Let's get G2. For me, G2 is the best team from this side, right? G2 is a team that they really play for these Draven, Kog'Maw, Kalista champions and these sort of bot lanes and the matchup is going to be one-way bot. The matchup is going to happen and the HP towards that matchup is going to be one-side so they will abuse this fact.
So you'll see, a lot of times, they prio Maokai-Rell, they can guarantee camps, they will be inside their jungle just punishing the fact that they will have this window to do so and keep doing it basically forever until they can't anymore. That's only one example of a lot of windows that we can actually see that minor regions are not on the same level as this.
Even though this is, how can I say, a big example and not a small example, this happens a lot on the international stage and not only international, but major regions too, and if you're not ready, you're going to get punished. This doesn't happen a lot on [sic] a major region match because teams already defend this or teams are already ready on [sic] preparation or matchups or something like this in order to not let this happen.
That's why there's a huge difference towards these individual skill so they abuse all of these facts to make sure the pace of the game, as you said, is completely different. So that's why minor regions are not on the same page. I feel some things can actually get there given the time or something like this, but it's hard. It's not easy.
BLIX: That said, given the things that you've talked about in this conversation so far, and given the fact that you've been able to represent Brazil for the past three international events, where do you see Brazil when it comes to comparing other regions including both minor and major regions?
BeellzY: To be honest, based on scrims and the gameplay that we're being seen, I think Brazil, without the PCS region, is probably the best minor region. In the scrims and the things that we do such as figuring out how we see the game, I feel like we are a little bit ahead of them and it shows on stage a little bit, right? But yeah, we need to show it more on the international stage so this becomes actually true, but for us, at least Brazil is the best besides the PCS region.