PUBGM is one of the most played titles and top pro players and teams have managed to amass a massive army of fans and loyal supporters in recent times. 3 Indian teams also represented the country at the PMCO Global Finals, with Team SouL playing in the main event while Indian Tigers and TeamIND were at the Prelims. Unfortunately, visa issues meant that both IND and IT were unable to make it to Germany and played the games from India with a ping disadvantage. This meant, that both teams were unable to perform to their fullest and fell short of qualifying for the main event. However Indian Tigers were still able to impress as they finished in 6th place, just 10 points away from qualifying and even managed to snag one chicken dinner in the prelims.
In the weeks that followed, the IT roster have undergone several changes and have now rebranded as Orange Rock Esports. Along with this, the team has also managed to qualify for the ESL Vodafone Mobile Open Finals, which will take place in Milan in September and features a prize pool of 132,000 USD. They along with 2 more Indian teams will represent the country at the event.
Today, we speak to Orange Rock Esports to find out what they learnt from their PMCO journey, their preparations going into the LAN and what their plans are for the upcoming months. Currently, the team consists of Carry and Mavi who were retained from IT, ex1stence who was last playing for Entity Gaming and sandhu who was one of the star performers from the India qualifiers of the PMCO. Additionally, Bharat 'Ribbiz' Reddy will be managing the team and he brings a whole lot of esports experience having played Counter-Strike and has won multiple LANs in the country and represented India outside as well.
Hey guys! Hard luck at the Prelims but you guys fought well. Now that you have had time to think about your performances, are you happy about the result since you were at a disadvantage?
We did the best we could given the recent revision of our team make-up and also the ping disadvantages. We still need to come together as a team and that's something we are very focused on in the coming weeks. We are all going to be spending time together -- having our own team boot camp -- training together, and becoming stronger as a team.
In the 4th game of Day 2, your team finished second after losing a close 2v1 situation against PLM on Sanhok. The result seemed like it caused some frustration within the team. How did you guys bounce back from it and continue to focus?
Again, referring back to the new dynamics in the team, our communication during the game wasn't where we would like it to be. We are investing heavily in improving our squad strategies and connecting as a team. Although we are all strong individual players, we need to learn each other's play strategies and strengths so that we can cater our approach to our respective strengths. Once we finish boot camp together, we anticipate being able to play together more seamlessly.
How much did you guys have to adjust your strategy after knowing that there will be a 100+ ping disadvantage while fighting other teams?
We anticipated the possibility that we would have a 150-180 ping disadvantage and actually trained with that in mind and even crafted our strategy around it. Given the ping disadvantage, we wanted to avoid close fights. Our plan worked and we were able to place well even with the disadvantage.
After Day 1, did you get a chance to go back and watch the games? Were you able to adjust your strategies and plans accordingly or did you stick to the same sort of ideas that you came into the tournament with?
Our strategy is always lead by our mission to work as a team to conquer the other players. When it comes to reviewing footage after day one, we would rather focus on our future play rather than dwell on the past. There certainly are learnings to be gleaned from reviewing game footage, but we want to stay focused on our mission and our game play for the next day.
What do you think PLM and XQF got right that allowed them to finish more than 100 points above the 3rd, 4th and 5th placed teams?
We love seeing exemplary players from other teams being in their zone. XQF specifically has some excellent players that have impressed us. Every good player that comes to Esports just elevates the entire group, so we get really excited when we see highly skilled players coming up.
In Erangel, you guys chose Pochinki as your starting spot. Was this a calculated risk as any team could have contested you because of superior ping?
Our team is known to be the best in India when it comes to containers and we've always found that we have good luck looting in Pochinki. For us, Pochinki is one of the greatest places in the map to loot, since it has so many tall buildings. However, lots of players know this, which means there will almost certainly be many landing around this city looking for the same things we are looking for. For us, looting in Pochinki is a high-risk, high-reward situation. We got lucky this match as we didnt see many other players landing there and were able to take advantage of that.
What steps are you taking to ensure that there aren't any visa issues preventing you guys from reaching Milan?
Firstly, it was heartbreaking to hear that our visas were denied the previous time and the denial does make the situation harder to deal with.
Under the new leadership, our Orange Rock crew have a team of visa experts looking at our paperwork and are also consulting with local experts to best prepare for it. Ultimately as we submit, it is in the hands of the Italian consulate to understand that we are a pro Indian gaming/e-sports team representing our country at a top tier level and we hope they will give it this time around. It would be very disheartening if this happens again but we are staying positive and hoping for the best as we aspire to win it for India!
Give the fans a brief glimpse of what a normal day in the boot camp is supposed to be like.
Eat game sleep repeat.
We are really excited to bond as a team. For us, our team is going to be the best if we can come together and play off each other’s strengths and weaknesses. That’s what this week is all about for us.
Also, our manager Bharat Kiran Reddy (also known as Ribbi) will be there streaming some of the week.
What do you think makes your team and your players strong?
We have so many interesting different character traits There is one awesome shot caller and all of us are aggressive bad*** players.
Do you guys have any shout outs?
We'd like to give a shout out to the millions of Indian gamers out there who provide us the fuel needed to succeed.
Check out Orange Rock Esports and give their handles a follow to stay up to date with the team.