G2 Esports defeated “Discount G2,” or Misfits, in Week 9 of the European League of Legends Championship Series (EU LCS) regular season to remain poised to challenge Fnatic for first place. Following the set, Luka “Perkz” Perkovic spoke with Slingshot’s Kelsey Moser about G2’s advantages over Misfits, the mid lane matchups, and the rise of Janna.
Kelsey Moser: It seems like, at the start of the series, you and Misfits were pushing this “Discount G2” narrative as if they play like you guys do. In what way do you think Misfits sort of play like you?
Luka “PerkZ” Perković: I don’t know where exactly this is coming from. I think it’s because Riot is forcing the hype, so they make these teasers, and then players do interviews, and then — Zven said it or someone, and I think it was like. It was a thing before because since spring split, they have tried to play the macro (like correct game, you know?). They were always trying to play Korean style. They have Koreans. They had Koreans before, they have one now, so they were trying to play Korean picks, Korean style, just play good League of Legends. I think since spring split we’ve been calling them Discount G2, and basically we call them discount because they are just worse individual players and worse team. No matter what they do, in the end, they will always be those two: worse team and worse individual players. So that’s why we thought we could never lose to them.
KM: In these two games against PowerOfEvil, you played somewhat even mid lane matchups, but you still managed to…
LP: So first I played Orianna vs Syndra. That is like — Orianna can go equal early, but then Syndra should have the push every time after Level 6 because she has more all-in pressure. Another thing: Syndra has more gank pressure too because she can stun, so I can’t play as aggressive. But if I can play as aggressive as I can, I can win early. But, since she had Maokai, I just had to give respect. And, after Level 6, Syndra can push, but I don’t know what he did that he misplayed. I didn’t know — every time I played those matchups on stage (Syndra-Orianna, Orianna-Syndra), I end up winning in the end, so I don’t know what the enemy mid laner is doing wrong. I know that, this time around, he did one roam top that was bad, and he used his flash. Therefore he died after because he misplayed. He should never be able to even die in this matchup, but I just don’t know what he does wrong. It’s hard for me to say right now because I played just fine. I didn’t do anything especially good.
And, the second game, I picked Kassadin. My reasoning was because they had zero CC. They had Trundle, Jarvan, Kalista, Camille, so it was a good pick against those champs, even later on. Kassadin can never win early game, and Galio is free lane, but the problem is Kassadin also gives Galio free lane, so it’s a tradeoff, you get scaling for — they had early game pressure, and they actually played well around it, like they used top ult two times or three times, and my Gnar died. Like he really can’t do anything, I felt sorry for him in the game, and then we chose this pick. I couldn’t pick anything else that was better that was going to pressure, so I think Kassadin was a good pick overall. We were going to win no matter what unless they like snowball in 20 minutes. The matchup was like equal. He can farm. I can farm. He can push always. There wasn’t much to say about that matchup, yeah. That was just my pick vs. their champions.
KM: You said that they played against the Gnar really well, but it seemed like they were tunneling on this top lane. There was one time where, yeah the Gnar died, but they burned like three flashes. Do you think that they went too hard on that? How do you react to that kind of thing on your end?
LP: I don’t know if they went too hard on that. Maybe a little bit because they could just take it slowly, step by step, like Gnar was losing farm anyways. So burning three flashes and losing two mid waves to do this kind of play was unnecessary, I think. They just were forcing a kill instead of playing it slowly because Galio could have kept pushing every wave, and they could have kept denying me farm, and they would have to go top with jungler and mid. They could have played better for sure. They didn’t play nearly as good as they could have, so the play in the end lost them pressure because they got a kill, and Gnar just TP’d top after. The only thing they got was a TP advantage after that, so that wasn’t that good for them, but I think they could have played better for sure, and after that, Galio lost some pressure for mid for some waves too, so I could just keep pushing because we had vision too on one side. In the end, it was not so good for them, I would say. But yeah, that’s basically about that play. Later on, they just made it one more time, or something. There’s not much that Gnar could do.
KM: Whenever I watch Misfits games, I feel like PowerOfEvil is one of the mid laners in the LCS who is most likely to give up waves mid for a side lane play. Under what scenarios do you think it’s good to give up mid lane? A lot of teams really value keeping mid pressure.
LP: Well, I think, in my opinion, you should never give up mid waves unless you get a turret in the end. Unless you make a four man play (like with jungler) and dive, and you get a turret. Then it’s fine. But, what you really want to do is, if you have mid pressure, first you push the wave, and then you walk into enemy jungle and put the wards. Then you go back to next wave, and you threaten to dive bot — or top. Like, you just threaten, because enemy is a team, you know? They will just say “Oh, he’s missing, he’s missing, care,” and the enemy top or bot lane will back out, and they lose minions, and that’s how you want to play. And then you get chunks on turrets. And that’s how you want to play the game.
You don’t want to lose farm on anyone because enemies can make counterplay on the other side of the map, and it’s not good anyways to trade if you are ahead. Or at least, that’s my perception of the game. Some people like to give up CS to force stuff. I don’t think that is good, and I don’t do it myself, so yeah.
KM: Ardent supports are becoming more common, but right now support really has a lot of influence on mid lane (like with roams), and some of these Ardent Supports don’t have as safe or as good of roams. Do you think that affects how you play mid at all?
LP: For sure. I think mid is not at all a 1-v-1 lane anymore. Not even close. I think mid is now not the hardest role play, but the most annoying role to play because you depend on your team so much. You don’t fight mid alone unless you have your support behind you or your jungler or a top laner pushing. As long as you have one lane pushing, because that lane can relieve pressure from you, and you can relieve pressure from somewhere else and clear vision and stuff.
Before we were playing a lot of Tahm and stuff and Thresh, but these champs are like dropping out of meta because they are not so strong in team fights and going mid and ending. But Alistar is pretty good if you have winning matchup because he can just go mid like level three already or something. It was today — SKT vs KT — they ganked bot, and Alistar just got Mobis, went mid, went bot, killed support. I think support can have so much influence if you’re playing Alistar or Thresh early — Rakan somewhat after level six too.
But, I think those supports are still strong, but I think Janna — if you get a free lane — I think Janna is so strong now. That’s how I feel. I think Janna has the best scaling out of every support. She counters tanks in team fights, and she is good against — even if you have a 1-4 comp, she can disengage, so this champ is just, overall, pretty strong unless you get fucked bot for it. Because in lane it’s pretty bad even when it gets Ardent Censer. I think the meta is a bit boring, I would say. Yeah, that’s basically it.
KM: When I interviewed you about the UoL final, you had some ideas for a storyline for that series. What story would you tell about FNC vs G2?
LP: It’s pretty fun to play against them. It’s fun that they are good. I really like that they are good because it always gives me satisfaction when we win against Fnatic because Fnatic is the team with highest fan base. G2 was hated before, but now the fan base got higher too. So, it was like, G2 and Fnatic are the biggest brands in Europe by far. It’s natural that this is going to be a really hype final — I’m already calling it that, I’m already calling it a final (*laughs*). And uh, maybe it’s BM calling it a final, but I don’t think other teams can — I think Splyce and H2K have a chance, you know, to maybe win against us. But I think it’s going to be really hard for those teams to win against both of us.
I really want to win against Fnatic just because they are so huge brand. That’s the only thing. Because it’s hype, and you obviously want to show that you are the best team.
KM: Do you think this series will be closer than the semifinal in Spring?
LP: I think they should because in spring semifinals they were legit trolling. They had one pick they were good with, which was Sol, and Caps was really bad on every other champ — even meta picks like Syndra, he was not good at all. They were playing Shen and Kennen and stuff. They just had this cheese style, which was really good until we just learned how to play around it, so they cannot win. But now, they are actually a good team, you know, you cannot take it away from them. They are not first place for no reason. They have a very well planned out early game, too. The best scrim practice we can get is Fnatic. It’s going to be a very interesting matchup against Fnatic, but I am not worried at all, and in the end we will win.
KM: People have been focusing a lot on Fnatic playing with these more meta ADCs. Do you think that’s been the main factor for their improvement or is there something else?
LP: I think sOAZ has been the best player on the team since last Spring. He has been carrying the team so hard. It’s really amazing to see because I really have huge respect for him, and also the people who play for so long like Doublelift comes to the top of my mind. Because it’s really hard for me to even like think about it that he is playing this game for six or seven years professionally because I am already getting like tired having to think about League 24/7 after only two years. It’s really hard to stay a top player for so long, and sOAZ has been a top player for six years. It just — like — and to see him now perform so good, it’s just impressive, honestly like I have nothing but so much respect for sOAZ.
Rekkles got so much hype from fans for playing split-push style. I think Rekkles is a very good player, very talented since beginning. You can obviously see that he’s a good player, and he can pull out split-push styles, but I’m not afraid of Rekkles carrying games.
KM: Do you think there are some other factors that have lead to FNC’s improvements that you think people have overlooked?
LP: I think they’ve changed up a lot of things about mid lane from last split or even earlier, like Caps used troll with picks. I don’t know with what reason. I think he’s just having fun in the game. I think now Caps is a little more stable player who plays mages, so he’s actually a good core for the team, and before, he was just a coin flip. Drop a coin, and maybe he carries, maybe he runs it down.
Now he is just a pretty strong player. So basically, having mid lane stability helped them a lot, too.
KM: Speaking of Caps’ weird picks, I saw you were playing some of the Kayn mid in solo queue. Can you talk a little bit about your thoughts on that?
LP: I saw Caps’ Kayn. He played it in scrims. And he was getting fucked. Then, we made a mistake and threw at Nashor, and the game became so clown. He was getting some kills, and I was getting so triggered, and I was like, okay, I’m going to play Kayn too.
Then I go solo queue, and I play Kayn five games. I’m like “This champ is so OP, you know?” I buy Mobis and run around the map and get kills everywhere. I’m like “Holy shit, this champ is so strong.” But then, I played it in scrim myself, and I was so useless. I don’t know how Caps won with Kayn in LCS. It blows my mind. Like. It really blows my mind how bad enemy team must have been to lose to Kayn. I don’t understand. I just really don’t. This champ is horrible.
Cover photo courtesy of Riot Games