Baolan: “MadLife is a god. He made me realize how strong supports are.”

In an interview for ELLE Men, Invictus Gaming support Wang “Baolan” Liu-Yi spoke about he fell in love with the role, what does he like to do on holidays, and what he plans to do after he retires.

Why did you choose to play support?

I feel support really suits me. I love this role and have put lots of effort trying to master it. When I started playing, supports were not that important in the game; I wasn’t good at them either. Then I noticed a player — MadLife. He’s a god. When he used skillshots, he would anticipate opponents’ position after Flash and land the ability. He made me realize how strong supports are, so I began to study the role and watch tons of video guides.

At the beginning, climbing the ladder wasn’t a smooth sailing for me. I would also blame my teammates, but the more I played, the more I started to think about where I can improve. Because you can’t demand anything from your teammates, but you get to decide how well you can play.

We can see in some video footages that Ning and JackeyLove can be really blunt in discussions. Does that affect other players’ mentality?

Even though we are all relatively young, we’ve already experienced a lot. Rookie and Duke are competitive scene veterans; JackeyLove and TheShy were long-time streamers before playing professionally. Ning and I have also played in the secondary league for a while. So we are more mature compared to people around our age. When we are on stage, we try our best to win and do not let emotion affect our performance.

We have a feeling that iG are more likely to make bold plays and are more creative. Why is that?

The management and players are close, and the players dare do the things they want to do. We also trust each other. When someone says, ”We can take the fight”, we will go for it even when we are outnumbered. Sometimes we fail but we succeed more often than not. In my opinion, it’s important that everyone inside the organization trusts each other. Of course, it’s also because our players are indeed very talented. We have the skill to execute our ideas. I’m not saying we are right because we’ve got good results, I just think it suits iG.

What do you usually do on holidays?

We only have a vacation when we get eliminated from a tournament, but it didn’t happen to us at Worlds, Demacia Cup, or the Spring Split finals. Therefore, we haven’t got much vacation. It’s a bummer really: we are exhausted from practice and want to have time to rest, but we don’t want to lose either.

Even when we do get a vacation, we don’t get a prior. We would get a one-day break out of the blue, which makes it difficult to arrange plans in advance. Sp basically we just go out to eat and watch movies.

How do you spend your money?

I’m not really into shopping and prefer to stay at home. Now that I think about it, I basically just buy clothes, shoes, groceries, and save the rest.

Do you pay attention to what people talk about you on the internet?

When we say we don’t care what people say about us on the internet, we are actually afraid of getting comments like “they lost because of mentality issues”. To fans mentality will be the only factor that results in victory or defeat — his skill, team strategy or coordination, but mentality. Players can’t defend themselves and the only thing they can do is keep playing with this tag which may stick with him for their entire professional life. A lot of players have been there and they have to live with it.

What would you do after you retire?

I’d like to try things I haven’t done, something new. But I’m not sure if I can achieve these things. After all, I love gaming but I’m not sure how much do I love other stuff and how much passion and effort will I be able to put in it. Maybe it’s just because I’m kind of a pessimist, so I need to save more money now.