We had the chance to speak with Jake “stewie2k” Yip from Made in Brazil, formerly of Cloud9 during his teams run here at the FACEIT London Major. The young star opened up about the struggles experience after joining MiBR, his new coach, Tarik, and more. MiBR made it through to the playoffs with a 3-2 record in the New Legends stage after an opening loss to TyLoo and a 16-0 beating at the hands of Astralis before taking out Ninjas in Pyjamas 2-1 to move forward.
VPesports: First off, we’re going to do a topic that I’m sure you’ve discussed a thousand times, this transition from Cloud 9 to MiBR. Now you guys struggled quite a bit in the beginning with MiBR, then when Tarik came in there was still some struggle, but you guys seem to have found your footing. Did you expect it to be as hard as it has been to go from Cloud 9 to MiBR?
Stewie: I didn’t think it was going to be as hard as it was, I think the reason it was so hard was because there was no leadership on the team. There was really no one trying to step up and take the leadership role. You’d expect Fallen to do this but when I joined the team there was really no guidance or anyone to help me understand their style, help me understand how they like to play the game. We both have different philosophies of the game and you can tell because Cloud 9 has a different style than SK and MiBR. There was no structure in terms of practice, and we were just playing to play and expecting me to understand how they like to play, and that was super hard for me. But over time I was getting used to it, but it would take longer than it’s supposed to. Picking up Tarik was like that the same way, but I think the one big impact was picking up Janko. I think Janko was the one who came in and he kind of made a statement saying he wants this for the team, he wants us to get back on top. He’s creating structure for the practices, he’s creating plans and making sure we’re disciplined, making sure we’re following the rules and if we don’t there’d be punishment. You know, we’re all grown people, we’re all on the same team and we know it’s just for the better. We have to follow the rules and that’s what’s making the progress a lot better now.
VPesports: Was that a shock to you? Even for me just hearing that, from the outside looking in MiBR/SK were very structured, and they had Fallen lead, every now and then Coldzera would come in with some calling and things like that. Did you know going in that’s not how it was?
Stewie: Joining them I knew they were still going downhill a little bit and I knew there was some problems on the team, but I didn’t know it was such a broken team. It was like a broken record being replayed over and over again, and noone wants to step up and take the leadership role, everyone is just tired of all these problems. When you’re tired of all these problems and you’re not fixing it, it’s just gonna add more and more problems.
VPesports: Who’s the leader now? Have you guys just put it all on Janko to do it, or have you guys found people within the game to kinda take over that role as well?
Stewie: I think nowadays the motivation is there. I think the main reason is Janko, he’s the one doing most of the dirty work and making it easier on Fallen. I think everyone is stepping up. Everyone speaks their mind, everyone says if there is a problem or if there is a good idea no one is afraid to speak their mind anymore. This is the team I signed up for, this is the team I’ve wanted to join for a long time. It’s finally showing now, we’re progressing super fast. It’s gonna be a long process but we’re showing some hope. This is the team I signed up for.
VPesports: With Tarik joining, I’m assuming that made things easier for you to have another primarily English speaking player, because even though they speak English I’m sure the conversations made their way into a language that you don’t necessarily understand. When he joined do you feel like the dynamic became more even across the board, or was it still heavily favoring one way?
Stewie: I think Tarik joining is a big plus for us because he speaks English as well. With me on the team sometimes they would speak Portuguese and I’d let it happen, it’s their native tongue. But with Tarik and Janko on the team nowadays, who speaks very good English, there’s a rule that we try to speak English as much as possible. On your free time you can do whatever you want, but I think it’s a good rule because it forces them to speak English and its gotten to the point where it’s becoming their first language in and outside the game. Inside the game they are going to have to speak English, but if they speak English outside the game it only makes their English better. It makes their lifestyle easier. We travel around the world, English the primary language and it makes it easier for them. They’re trying to learn more vocabulary, they’re trying to make it easier for them. There’s not much to say I guess, it’s a good thing.
VPesports: Now, something I talked to Moses about earlier was that Cloud 9, their current lineup, and since you know more about the internal issues and things that maybe the players that are still there had or have. It’s always been kind good whenever a good team blows up, because then some younger teams get those veteran players that come in, for instance, compLexity now is looking good, they gained Stanislaw, they gained Shazam, with a young core, and so they can bring that experience. Do you think Cloud 9 would be better going that route, or do you think the three should stick together? Moses mentioned getting rid of Skadoodle and bringing in a young person like Wardell or something like that. If you could change the team right now how would you do it?
Stewie: If I was to change Cloud 9 I think the key thing to keep on this team is to keep Golden. I spoke to them a little bit in the last week before they left, they were saying how Golden was the leader they always wanted, that it comes natural to him and he speaks his mind when there’s mistakes and he’s not afraid to say it. I think he’s going to be one of the biggest factors for Cloud 9. In terms of changes I think they just need to find out what they want on the team, who’s going to be the star player, who are they going to revolve around. Ska is capable of being a star player, you could tell back in 2015 when Shawn was still on the team they revolved around Ska. Ska was becoming one of the best awpers in the world, he was considered one of the best awpers in the world next to Guardian. Ska has his potential and he still has his skill set, but he’s more of a support awp player, he’s in the back just holding angles, you’re not doing much.
VPesports: And in the current meta teams are dependant on awpers to get those picks to make those plays, so he might not fit in as well.
Stewie: Yeah, so I think if they really want to make a roster change they should find an up and coming rifler, a really solid rock, someone you can really depend on and not worry about him. Kinda revolve your game around Ska if they want to, but have a player who can be independent, who can think for themselves. I think that’s going to be the best for Cloud 9.
VPesports: How do you feel about your round one matchup going into this?
Stewie: We’ve had a lot of tough teams in the group stages. We played many tough teams and we didn’t play to well, especially against Tyloo, we could have went one three to zero. Playing against Complexity, I’m not going to say it’s a relief, but we’re definitely happy being on this side of the bracket. We’re not underestimating any team, we know Complexity made it to the playoffs for a reason, we know they’re playing super well. We’re just going to have to be on top of our A-game and take it game by game and round by round.