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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 wasn’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, it’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.  I felt that I wasn’t playing my own playstyle before, and I really didn’t like playing passively so now I’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, I’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 I’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 you’d like to see in the game?

I feel that the current meta is pretty good because it’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.

 

Q: Shoutouts?

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 twitter talking about Esports.

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As we look towards the 2015 World Championship the Unicorns of Love have their sights set on a possible roster move, announcing that they will be holding tryouts for the AD Carry role beginning in November.

 

UnicornsHere to update you for the changes we’ve been talking about: We’ve decided as a team to hold try-outs for the…

Posted by Unicorns Of Love on Monday, 7 September 2015

 

As the November tryout date approaches, NoL will follow this story and provide further insight into possible candidates for the UoL roster.

 

Interview with Powerofevil Banner

 

Last time we spoke you were just coming off of a second place finish in the Spring Split. Now, you’re about to face Fnatic in the Semifinals. First however, let’s talk about your most recent game against Fnatic.

Our game vs Fnatic was not as we expected coming into the rift. We had a good start but made 1-2 crucial mistakes which got us really far behind and props to Fnatic with closing out the game insanely fast and punishing our mistakes.

 

You let Ryze through seemingly with the plan of attempting to shut him down early, which did work and led to an early advantage for you. What fell apart that the game turned around so rapidly and was closed out in only 23 minutes? What was your gameplan before the match?

As mentioned before these 1-2 errors crucial were the biggest reason we lost the game. I felt ahead BUT we were only even. We had a better scaling composition so we were totally fine with that until we got dived bot and Ryze got back in the game.

 

With Fnatic going 18-0, and an almost assured qualification the 2015 World Championship, do you think they are title contenders? What makes them so strong?

They are for sure title contenders. Not dropping a single game in the regular is insane BUT I am hyped to face them in the playoffs in a bo5. I am sure we can make it a close series. I think they just have some of the best tp decision calls and shotcalling in the game.

 

You were playing with Gilius. What are the differences between him and Kikis?

Gilius is not as experienced as Kikis LCS wise. He is warding less and his routes are not as carefully plannes as Kikis but he improved a lot on that. With his good mechanics he got us ahead in the early game most of the times. The best thing on him was that he always wanted to improve and he was really confident in the calls he made even as a new player.

 

Can you talk about H0r0? It is understood that he will be playing with the team in the playoffs. Has the team been practicing with him? How has the team dynamic been and is there a difficulty communicating in the team due to language barrier?

Horo was the starter vs Roccat. We felt really confident after practicing for a week with him in scrims. I think one of the biggest thing was that we started having fun in scrims again and you learn a lot if you enjoy the game as well. I dont think we have to many problems communicating with Horo both outside of the game or in the game. He sometimes speaks a little bit slow but he improved a lot on that already. We are trying to help him ingame when he trys to say something but normally thats not a big deal.

 

What are the advantages of H0r0, in your opinion? He’s definitely no stranger to the competitive scene, where do you think he stacks up with the rest of the competition? How is the Jungle/mid synergy going?

Horo is planning his route really careful which means he nearly never gets chaught. His warding is similiar to Kikis which helps me out a lot. If you call for him, he trys to come ASAP and is not looking at what he is losing. He will try to help you and get you back in the game even if he falls behind for that. He had a really good performance in the series and I am proud of reaching semis with him. I would say the jungle/mid synergy is fine right now but obviously can still get improved on.

 

How did you feel heading into your series against roccat, and what steps did you take to prepare?

We prepared the whole week playing scrims and speaking nearly everyday about bans, counterbans, picks and counterpicks. We felt really confident in the series with our bans that we didnt switch anything till the last game where a change was needed after the “sivir” ban.

 

What are you working on most to improve on individually? What is your current favorite solo queue champion?

I think I need to improve on my eye when I can go for a roam and get kills on another lane. I feel like I dont have the perfect eye for that yet. Syndra is my favorite soloQ champion. Your laning phase is decently strong but her burst after 6 is just insane.

 

How do you feel about the recent Azir changes? Was it overdone? What changes would you have made?

In my opinion Azir is not tier 1 anymore. He lost an insane amount of combat potential (1v1) with losing the knockup on the E spell. In general it is way harder to ult people in both teamfight and 1v1.

 

What changes would you make on the mid role, if any?

I dont think I would do any changes. I like the meta right now and that you have a huge diversity in the champions that are available.

 

What is the pregame and in-game dynamic like? What I mean is, what is the thought process behind say, your pick for example, and what factors go into what you will play? Once in-game, how is shotcalling handled? Is it just one player making calls, or does everyone have a role?

When I look what I am going to pick, I am checking out their bans. What did they ban what do they want to go for maybe. What is our team composition about. What is the enemy team composition about. Do they, for example, have enough engage? This can lead sometimes to picking a poke champion. (Kog/Varus). Normally I dont care about what I can get countered with BUT sometimes you NEED to look at that and you are forced to go for not the best pick for the team but the 2nd best.

 

Who do you think are the top 3 mid laners in Europe right now? Who is the hardest to lane against and what makes them difficult?

I think the competition is really close so its hard to say who is top 3 right now. The hardest to lane against is probably Ryu/Nukeduck and Pepiinero because they are always trying to win their lane even if they maybe overextend.

 

How dank are your memes?

Not good, haha!

 

You started the series off with a strong 2-0. What was your mindset heading into the 3rd game and what happened in games 3 and 4 that led to those defeats?

I think a huge factor was the Kalista pick. We didnt play against her for weeks and werent used to the overaggressive style that the support can manage to do.

 

You’ve been in a game 5 scenario for most of your playoff life, are you used to it to the point you would say you feel comfortable, or at least calm?

I dont think a 5th game will ever be calm. It went to 50 minutes again and it was the same scenario as in the 4th game. People were scared of losing it again so everyone took his last power and we played it out carefully…keeping TP’s and Maokai Righteous Glory engages in mind.

 

What was your plan heading into the final match and what was going through your head?

We were thinking about Kalista but in the end we didnt want to change anything. The 4th game was ours and we lost it more than they won it (Not denying that they had an insane comeback). When they banned Sivir we saw our chance of being able to switch a ban.

 

You’re up against an undefeated Fnatic next. What is your preparation like heading into that series and are you confident you can come out ahead? Do you expect a close series?

They didn‘t drop a single game and that is why you should respect them BUT that is a weakness as well when they drop their first game in the series I think. It doesn‘t matter that you went 18-0 in the regular split. If you lose the series, you lose and go to gauntlet system most likely.

 

Did you expect to be in yet another semifinal in what is still your rookie season? Is there a lot of pressure this time?

I dont think there is much pressure on us. I am sure everyone expects us to lose against Fnatic which means we can only upset people and not disappoint anybody.

 

What are your thoughts on the NA semifinal matchups and who do you believe is the strongest of those teams? Which NA teams do you think will be at Worlds and which do you feel are the strongest or you would like to play against the most?

Its hard to predict to be honest. I will let myself get suprised who goes to worlds, but I would love to face Bjergesen there. I am sure he would want revenge from our last time we met in IEM.

 

How do you think Incarnati0n has done in his NA debut?
I think he is a middle tier midlaner for now but becomes better every day.

 

Shoutouts?

Thanks to everyone who supports me and keeps supporting me in the Playoffs. I am going to try my best reaching worlds with my team!