Walking back to the hotel after meeting with Yumiko (Group D - day 1) we had this discussion :
Foggy : So happy, tomorrow I can again train with no ping!
Ugri : What if the Chinese offered you to stay in China and play from there full time?
Foggy : Well, that is impossible, ping would be too high to stream on goodgame.ru ?!
Ugri : /puzzled/ Well... so what, you could stream on a Chinese channel and have thousands of viewers?
Foggy : What? But no... no that's not possible... I like the people there. I want to stream from gg.ru!
Right there I felt that what I just said sounded like a blasphemy. I started to understand why he was so popular. It's not because someone is from Europe that you are going to automatically root for him as an European. I did not know him before but I wanted to get to know him better!
May 21st : Foggy arrives in China
Foggy arrived around 10AM after a 30 hours trip? At least that's what he told me. He rushed to the practice room to train on the Netease ladder, enjoying a 0 ping connection. We met him there at 4 pm and watched Yumiko vs Fly100% together. He appeared to be more excited than tired. I did not know what he looked like but I had two clues : he is the only white guy in the room and he wears a hood with his name on it!
He is already quite popular, being called "Harry Potter" by most of the players.
He trained until 10 pm which is when the training room closes. They probably had to kick him out...
May 22nd : Win or go home!
Putting so much effort into getting there, you just don't want to play one day and go back home right away. Foggy drew a very tough group, could it be worse? The 2 players that won the first WCA qualifiers are in there : 120 and Lyn. The first is said to be the most talented in the world at the moment. Lyn is the 2nd best earner in prizes in the history of the game. Finally you get Lucifer, one of the best of all times and someone that is very used to play in offline tournaments.
What are your accomplishments?
Facing those 3 powerhouses, Foggy has to present himself to the Chinese streamers. They want to put each players accomplishments in an overlay to introduce them to the viewers. (He reported this dialogue to me).
Admin : Ok what did you win in your career?
Foggy : Well, it is my first offline tournament... but I won 10 Gera Cups!
Admin : Ger.. what? What is it? Is that all?
Foggy : Well no, I won 1 Ifeng Cup too...
Admin : /thinking/ ok we will go with 10 Gera Cups...
Lyn vs Foggy : Round 1
It's Dday, Lucifer and 120 went onto the stage. I meet with Foggy.
Ugri : How was your training today? Will you watch the game or will you keep practicing?
Foggy : I feel very good! I will watch the games, it is not good to train too much before an important match.
He shows me his record of the day
Ugri : Well Foggy you just played 21 games in a couple of hours, I would call that training a lot!
Game 2 of 120 vs Lucifer is about to end, Foggy goes on stage with Lyn. Everybody in the room is so impressed with 120's play! Now is the moment for Foggy, and all his fans are cheering for him! Are they fans or friends?
Foggy vs Lucifer
This is the LB Final... the looser is going home the next day! They both came from abroad, it is heartbreaking when you think about it...
I explained in another article, the scene of us 3 waiting for the RPG game to end
Before Lucifer came to join us I've found Foggy quite upset :
Ugri : Well done Foggy, that was close! You showed them your worth! (ED : stupid thing to say to someone who lost in any situation)
Foggy : Not at all! I should have done better. I prepared for this, I felt good... I should have just done better!
Ugri : You played vs Lyn!
Foggy : It does not matter, it does not matter who it is. Now I've got to win this.
OMG I should just stfu! I stayed silent until Lucifer came and joked a little. Foggy seemed very determined, it made me confident.
Live to see another day :
Ugri (cheering) : Well done!
Foggy (happy but...) : Could have done better. Lucifer was not at his best. I lost two archers I should not have. Against 120 I would have probably lost.
Ugri : Sure sure... let's go back to the hotel and meet with Yumiko?
We went to meet Yumiko and WFZ in an internet Cafe. Those guys do not like to train in the open. As they were busy training their 2v2, we sat further and decided to do the video interview. See the article about Yumiko and WFZ.
Chatwin : maybe we do the video interview now?
Ugri : All right Foggy, first let me offer you a drink! What are you having to celebrate?
Foggy : Do they have hot milk?
Ugri : Seriously, milk.. hot? You mean Hot chocolate?
Foggy : No, just hot milk. Chocolate is not good at this hour.
A very long explanation about what to eat and what to drink at what time of the day ensues. Maybe Foggy will detail that when he comes back from China... I just remember that fruits are evil if eaten too late... (like the Gremlins?!)
Ugri (who was thinking of a beer just prior to that) : Well sure, hot milk! I'll have an ice-tea then!
We did the interview and he talked about his games. Battery ran out of power though...
He wants to play versus Lyn again. I am thinking "he just lost but wants to play versus him again?". I am happy to see him that confident, he acts like he figured exactly what needs to be done. He is prepared.
May 23rd : Win or go Home 2
Ugri on live chat : Do you feel good?
Shorty after that he messages me that there will be a car for us in 8 minutes downstairs. I am just taking my shower because nights end very late with Yumiko and WFZ... I have to rush downstairs, it is so hard to reach the studio otherwise... I am happy because it is 12:30, and I know that I will be able to spend the whole day with Foggy. I will just tweet like a maniac...
We spend the afternoon with 120 and Lyn. I receive tweets asking if 120 knows about Foggy's shirt (it's written 120 on his back, I still did not get the whole story, just that it has nothing to do with the player). 120 is much amused about it! It broke the ice for the interview I made of him afterwards.
120 has beaten Lyn 2-0, with a fantastic second game that I still do not understand. With an under-leveled DK and a smaller army, he managed to win all fights without breaking a sweat, or so it seems at least.
Lyn vs Foggy : round 2
Foggy is looking much more tense than in any of the other games. During Game 1 of 120 vs Lyn he lays down a bit on the couch. During game 2 he is like a wolf in a cage, walking around. GCS manager tells him to prepare to go on stage, he refuses and says he wants to go only when he is sure that Lyn has lost. He wants to keep his concentration.
Games were so amazing to watch. I was watching with several players while listening to B2W's shoutcast. That's it, he wins!
I hurry to join him, B2W wants him live for an interview. He accepts, atmosphere is so joyful. Just after, Hawk wants him live too! Interview will last 35 minutes (in russian).
Foggy : "It's weird, they seem happier than me?"
Going back to the hotel, Foggy wants to offer me a beer so we go out! We find a place and I order my long awaited sweet beer.
Ugri : What are you having this time, hot milk?
Foggy : No, it's too late for hot milk
Ugri : Water maybe?
Foggy : No nothing I'm fine
Ugri : So you are gonna watch me drink my beer? Mmmh ok...
Waitress sees him with nothing and is troubled, so she gives him a plate of watermelon for free. I have a feeling that...
Foggy to the waitress : No, no I don't want. Take it away, I do not want it.
He finally battles the waitress away with the watermelon plate.
But I cannot avoid another explanation about when to eat fruits! Guys, fruits are in the morning only!
It was just a cheerful moment. He checked VK and gg.ru and smiled at the comments. He posted some pictures, then we were back to the hotel. He was ready to focus on Infi already.
Foggy vs Infi
We exchanged a little about his preparation vs Infi on Saturday.
Ugri : Did you train with Yumiko?
Foggy : We played a lot together before GCS. But now we might play one another in the next round, so we cannot train together.
Ugri : Do you feel comfortable playing vs Infi? As comfortable as playing vs Lyn?
Foggy : Yes I feel the same, I played one game versus Infi on ladder this week and won.
Ugri : Tell us about your preparation
Foggy : I watched like 40 replays and 10 videos of Infi. I spoke with my coach Pooh and played a few games with Romantic.
Ugri : Do you feel lonely now that most of the players went back home?
Foggy : 120, ZhouXixi and Th000 are coming here everyday, and my manager KeKe supports me well in all situations
He had more doubts afterwards, he trained with Hawk and talked with Pooh some more but thought his NE/HU matchup was not his best. Can he beat Infi, we will see tomorrow. But you can bet that he is preparing for it. He will be ready!
-> you liked this article or you liked the GCS coverage we made on twitter? It is very important for future plans that you follow us there!
You already follow us? Then it is very important that you ask your friends or fan-base to follow us on twitter! That will make future coverage possible! Cmon guys, show the love!
Twitter account to follow! Check out our 3 days coverage of GCS live from Shanghai on twitter.