Interview with UoL Steelback: “I’m happy that people noticed that I improved but I still think that I can do way more.”
Putting up impressive numbers in the first few weeks of the 2016 season, I caught up with Unicorns of Love AD Carry Pierre “Steelback” Mejaldi to talk about his return to Europe, playing on a new team, the current meta, and more.
Q: You spent some time playing in North America on Team Imagine before joining Unicorns of Love. Did you enjoy your time there? Do you prefer playing in Europe?
Yes I enjoyed playing there. It was something totally new and a different mindset than EU players. I felt happy when I was in NA because I met really nice people and it gave me the opportunity to grow as a player.
Q: What was your mindset like heading into the season? Was there any difficulty in adjusting to a new team?
My mindset was to perform to my own expectations. I knew that I improved a lot but I didn’t want to fail to adapt properly on stage. There wasnâ€™t really any difficulty because everyone is really experienced which make things way easier.
Q: What is it like playing with Hylissang and what is the biggest difference between him and BIG/Baby or Yellowstar?
Well the biggest difference is in the laning phase aggression. Hylissang is very aggressive in lane which I like. Baby was kind of the same too. Yellowstar was more control and roamed way more which was also good, itâ€™s just two different playstyles.
Q: What type of role do you feel fits you best and do you feel it meshes well with the team?
I feel that I can play way more aggressive in this team and play more how I feel.Â I felt that I wasnâ€™t playing my own playstyle before, and I really didnâ€™t like playing passively so now Iâ€™m quite happy that I can just play natural and that everyone has the possibility to be a carry.
Q: What is the team environment like? What is communication like in game and how is shotcalling handled?
The team environment is pretty good. Everyone is willing to improve and plays the game a lot. We talk way more than my previous team and I think it’s really nice. You always needs to say what’s on your mind with shotcalling, and everyone is doing it pretty much which I think is the best cause everyone should be able to understand what would be the best move possible at what time.
Q: You played week with Djoko due to visa issues with Diamondprox. How much has this affected the team? What is the most noticeable difference in his absence?
Djoko played better than everyone expected, Iâ€™m sure he had confidence on stage to make plays. The absence of Diamondprox affected us obviously because he was a top tier jungler and had a lot of experience, he was helping the shotcalling a lot. I’d say the most noticeable difference is the experience and the knowledge that he has with every match up which is really huge.
Q: Last year, you said you wanted to see more Ezreal in the LCS. In 2016, he rounds out the top 10 most played champions in the EU LCS. Do you still enjoy playing him?
Yes I really enjoy Ezreal even though his laning phase is not the best at the moment due to his tear build. I still like him because you’re able to poke and make plays with him.
What in your eyes makes him so strong?
I feel his strongest point is his poke and his ability to peel for yourself and I think that people forget a lot about how to use his ult efficiently. For example clearing waves and harassing the enemy.
Q: How would you rate your performance so far? Who do you feel is the biggest competition among AD Carries in EU?
I’m happy that people noticed that I improved but I still think that I can do way more. People shouldn’t forget that my team is really good, which is a huge reason why Iâ€™ve looked good at the beginning of the season. I think there are a lot of good AD carries that I can learn from and we will see how it goes during the season.
Q: Of the teams you’ve played, who was most difficult to play against?
Well I think Fnatic was the most difficult cause they managed to stall the game for super long even though they were really behind. I feel that we lost to G2 and Origen because mostly because of draft.
Q: How do you feel about the state of the current meta? Specifically AD Carries? Are there any changes youâ€™d like to see in the game?
I feel that the current meta is pretty good because itâ€™s more about aggressive plays all over the map and there are way less tanks. Also, on AD carries you can build differently depending on which ADC you pick. Same for masteries, before there was one only way to take masteries and build AD carries.
I just want to thank every fan that support us. It helps a lot, you guys are awesome keep it up!
photo credit: lolesports
Caymus is a journalist and content creator for SoloMid. You can find him getting caught out in the depths of solo queue, or on twitterÂ talking about Esports.