Season 4 has come to a close. North America made a strong showing at worlds with two teams reaching quarter finals and each taking a game off the dominate Samsung lineups. Now Season 5 looms in the future and Riot is making changes to give coaches official recognition in the LCS.
Charlie has been integral to Cloud9's success during season 4. We spoke with him about his role working with the team, Worlds, and the role of support staff going into Season 5.
Can you describe your typical routine working with the team in scrims?
Charlie: Get up, talk to the players a little bit about what we should be looking to practice then we scrim and go over scrim VODs in between. After scrims, we typically talk over what happened during the day and, if there is LCS coming up, Lemon and I discuss pick/bans. We typically practice 9 hours a day, so that’s the majority of my day every day.
Analysis is still a growing field in North American League of Legends. How can players interested in this sort of work develop their skills and how do you improve your knowledge?
Charlie: Watching the game more than playing.
What do you think separates you from the average LCS viewer?
Charlie: I notice more things and have a deeper understanding of the game.
Is watching other regions a large influence over the teams strategic decisions?
Charlie: There are things that are very region-specific, like EU players like to play Aatrox a lot but other regions don’t. You have to realize what is actually beneficial to your team. Just because something works for some teams, it doesn't mean it works for you team.
With coaches gaining more recognition from Riot in Season 5, how do you think it will affect your own job or the region as a whole?
Charlie: I don’t think it will affect me in any way except financially. I’m always looking for ways to improve regardless of what Riot does. It will definitely make the region better with teams getting more staff.
Some teams have also picked up sports psychologists. Do you think they are necessary staff or is that more team dependent?
Charlie: I think all teams should have one. Many teams don’t realize how important they can be.
Pick/ban was the focus of a lot of discussion at worlds and has traditionally been an area where Cloud9 is considered very strong. Do you think there is anything unique about the teams approach?
Charlie: Lemon and I take a lot of time working on Pick/Bans. We approach each team differently depending on who we are facing.
The first game vs Samsung Blue went very differently from the rest of the set. Was there any particular strategy you were able to execute on?
Charlie: We have a good draft game 1 and we played it pretty standard. Level 1 also worked out really well for us.
Would you say the competitive level between regions has shifted since the Season 3 World Championship?
Charlie: Yeah, I think generally the regions are much closer but the top Korean teams (mainly the Samsung teams) are far ahead of the rest of the World.
Thank you for your time. Would you like to give a shout out to our sponsors?
Charlie: Thanks to HyperX, Logitech, Alienware, Lol-Class, NEEDforSEAT, Homejoy, sideqik, and Kinguin.