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Impala: “My favorite region to WIN against is NA”

8 min

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Impala: “My favorite region to WIN against is NA”
DashFight interview with one of the best Brawlhalla players in the world

The 1v1 Brawlhalla tournament at DreamHack San Diego was very special. First of all, it was a rare opportunity for an open offline Championship. So many well-known players gathered together, and the emotions were tangible even through the streams.

And also, this event has clearly demonstrated the might of the BCX 2022 Champion, Impala.

I personally was very impressed by his performance at that World Championship. It feels like everyone loves such stories — we expect big names of the settled industry ещ fight each other, and then a guy appears seemingly from nowhere and destroys them to claim the title. Yep, Impala is certainly a talented player, with some really good results. But it was the BCX that boosted him to the top.

Traditionally, the starts of new esports seasons are somewhat shaky for World Champions. Impala reached pretty high positions at the Winter and Spring Championships. But it certainly felt like the online environment kind of limits his potential.

DreamHack San Diego was the tournament where we witnessed Impala playing his best. That victory is perhaps of the same significance as the BCX. Impala has proved his competitive level (and the community has probably started practicing Kaya much more).

I should probably stop talking at this point and finally bring your full attention to Impala. We had a chance to ask the Champion a few questions, and here are his answers.

But before we actually start, make sure to follow Impala on Twitter, YouTube, and Twitch.

DashFight Interview: Impala

— Describe please your general emotions after this victory. Does winning at DreamHack San Diego feel different from your victory at BCX 2022?

— General emotions? There was a mix of many. Before every set I was already shaking, so you can imagine it’s worse when I go up against a player where all eyes, attention, and support are on him naturally. I think out of all the emotions I’ve had after the victory, the one that stood out the most to me was grateful. Mostly for proving to myself that Worlds wasn’t a fluke, and that I’m more than capable of keeping it going.

— The Grand Final vs Sandstorm was so spectacular. How do you handle such tense moments as those last decisive hits? Is such pressure a helping factor to unleash your potential or rather disturbing stress?

— I don’t exactly handle them. Nobody does. Games like those have it so that anybody wins, and the last minute adaptations are something you have to hope on. In other words, you can only pray the reads that you saved for later check out. You kinda have to fight your own brain and not fold in on yourself. The pressure has never helped me. It just ends up stressing me out and makes me go to just moving and attacking recklessly. It happens significantly more often online.

— Is competing offline better for you? What’s the main difference — within the game (no lags, general feelings) or around the events (playing in front of a crowd, seeing your opponents)?

— As much as I didn’t wanna cough it up, yeah it is, and by a very large margin. The biggest difference is what’s going on inside my head. All the overprocessing, and the overthinking, the “intrusive thoughts” basically. They disappear and I feel more inclined to play the way in which I practiced. Online, I can’t help but have so much time to myself that my brain does none other than think too much, or completely outside of the game in the middle of my set. During my sets at LAN, said thoughts can also appear and start to affect my performance, but it’s nowhere near the way it affects me online.

— Does being a World Champion give you extra motivation to do better? What do you feel about this title after these months?

— It’s given me a lot of motivation. The progress that I made up to BCX was a reminder that I am constantly improving, regardless of how much faster my thoughts run around in my brain than the ones I need to win. I don’t understand the 2nd question, but I’ll answer in the way I think the question is being asked. I’ll still be proud of my achievements, especially since they’re always up on my shelf for me to see.

— Is Kaya really that good right now? Where would you place her in an objective Tier List? Would you recommend her to a beginner?

— She was really good during BCX, but definitely not this top one legend that everybody still thinks she is. There’re better characters, but it doesn’t matter if the opponent is, let’s say, silver, and they just continue to spot dodge out of hitstun. Right now, Lucien is the best character in the game, without a doubt. Even if blasters are controversial and are seen to deserve what they have, Lucien covers all the weakspots discussed by other top players with other legends that have Lucien’s weapons with his signatures. 

I really wish I could give Kaya an accurate listing on the tierlist, but I’ve never been good at making those. Especially in Brawlhalla. It’s so hard to make one just from the idea that anyone could win regardless of the status of weapons in the meta or the status of legends in the meta. But for me, I think she’s at least Top 10.

I’d recommend Kaya to a beginner. It’s weird. String weapons are extremely hard in the lower end, but objectively easier to play in tournaments, while Static weapons like spear and lance are easier to play in lower elos, but require a lot of focus in tournaments. It’s worth it though. The range the character has makes you feel more in control of the stage. Mostly because that’s what they’re built for.

— Do you play other characters? May we hope to see your Diana at a tourney?

— I dabble in them. If Kaya goes anywhere BELOW the state she’s in right now while also ignoring the rest of the higher tier legends I fear having to choose between the meta and… HER.

Until it gets to a point where I genuinely have no choice, Kaya is it. Diana and Ember are two really neat legends that I’ll only have around if it really gets to that point, which I kinda have to fend for myself on with social media.

— Who do you like to play against — in NA or maybe from other regions? Who’s your toughest opponent?

— My favorite region to fight against is probably the EU so far. They fit a lot into my flowchart due to their natures over in their region. My favorite region to WIN against though, is NA, every time. 

— Do you play other fighting games? Other video games in general?

— I played Injustice 2 casually throughout my early days playing Brawlhalla. But since I’ve set my eyes on Brawlhalla, it’s the only other fighting game I play now.

Other than that, Geometry Dash is the biggest one. I’ve been playing it forever. It helps me a lot with the smart over hard work trope. People who push in hundreds of thousands of attempts, although still achieve whatever it may be, the smarter players simply complete it in a few thousand from taking the level apart and understanding what to do better.

The competition of Brawlhalla esports continues, and it’s great to see that new achievements only give the best players fresh power to move forward. 

We thank Impala for the answers and hope to see more of his fire matches in Brawlhalla Esports Year Eight and beyond.

The next such opportunity may be at DreamHack Dallas 2023, on June 2-3. And let’s not forget about the upcoming Summer Championship, the ice of online fights should be broken! Yep, we certainly want to see Impala playing at one of the Royales.

This material was created with the support of our Patrons. You can support us!

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