After a huge mess of scheduling conflicts, MLG was finally able to nail down a time to interview the Nashville Champions – IGS Monglers. Defy, Vash and Gandhi were on hand to chat it up about their experience in Nashville, knock on each other and other teams, and basically just carry on with the cocky attitude that has made them such controversial and well-known personalities in the Halo community.
MLG: So this is the first time that each of you three have gotten first place at an MLG event. Congratulations! How do you feel now that you’ve finally accomplished this thing that you’ve been chasing all season?
Vash: Well, I walked into the tournament with zero practice and zero idea if anyone was gonna be any good. I thought the Ogres were just going to parachute in and beat us at the end, but they didn’t.
Defy: I’m the same way. I’m excited because we won, but we were supposed to win. We didn’t accomplish anything–we didn’t beat a good team.
MLG: Why do you say that Team US Eh wasn’t a good team?
Vash: They were good, but honestly, I’d put them as like the fifth best team overall. Whenever I go to a tournament I look out for IGS, 3D and Str8 Rippin (meaning TmG), and they’re not IGS, 3D or Str8 Rippin, so…
Gandhi: Yeah, and they had Mr. Ownage.
MLG: Well your team was quite a mixture, with players from TmG and Monglers…
Vash: Yeah, but we’ve all teamed before except for Zyos, so it’s not a big deal. We’re all pretty good friends, and we all have a very good understanding of the game, so when we walked into the tournament we just figured that our teamwork was going to mesh pretty well, just because we know what we’re doing, and it did.
MLG: How did throwing Zyos into the mix change things for you guys?
Vash: Less sleep, more insults. (team laughs)
Gandhi: Yeah, surprisingly, we got less sleep than if we had taken anyone else.
Defy: Saturday night, they played poker until like four in the morning.
Gandhi: Yeah, and then Friday he was just like, “Yeah, I’m just going to go out until the tournament starts. No big deal.”
Vash: I’ve never actually played with a player who picks up the ball or flag or hill… like he actually asks to take the ball from you. It’s kind of weird. I’m not used to playing with generous players; I’m used to playing with greedy people.
MLG: So Zyos is a really selfless player then?
Vash: Yeah, we’re all really good team players except for Gandhi, because Gandhi just sucks.
Gandhi: Hey, look at Lockout King of the Hill.
MLG: Gandhi, why are you so selfish? (sarcastically)
Gandhi: Because Vash can’t kill s***, so I gotta make up for it.
Vash: That’s not what every other game said, but we won’t look at those scores. We’ll keep with the Lockout game.
Gandhi: We can just go by tournament placements. (laughs)
MLG: Vash, what was it like teaming with Gandhi again? You guys used to be on IGS together, and VGA before that…
Vash: It was pretty funny. We had good times, good jokes. Gandhi wasn’t trying the entire tournament, but I actually expect that from Gandhi because if he did try, it wouldn’t even be fun. He’d just kill everything.
MLG: So you guys say that you consider Team US Eh to be sort of a fifth place level team, but…
Vash: … No. I’m not trying to put them down in any way. They’re good, but they even told me they didn’t prepare as much as they should have. I wasn’t like, “Oh my god, easy win.” I was just thinking, “We’re gonna win in the long run; in the 11-game series,” so there was no pressure. I wasn’t thinking 3 – 0, 3 – 0, 3 – 0, 3 – 0 like Gandhi was probably thinking, but I’m not that cocky so…
MLG: Well, you guys ended up having a 6 – 3 series against them, and a lot of the individual games were really close. Two of the close games in the Winners’ Finals went your way at the last possible second…
Vash: … That’s because we’re clutch, by the way.
MLG: How’d you guys pull those off?
Gandhi: Well, pretty much I was like, “Look, Bungie, I snap my fingers and you give me this hill spawn. I don’t lose to bad kids.” Then it just gives it to me.
Vash: We hill spawned and camped top, hill spawned and camped top.
Defy: We were up by so much in that Lockout game. We were up by at least a minute…
Gandhi: … Then they started coming back–I was surprised.
Vash: Mr. Ownage killed Gandhi at Sniper Tower, and we thought the sniper fell off the map. Meanwhile, he was helping his non-Canadian teammate over there, and basically he sniped me at least six times while I was trying to charge the top. They got 45 seconds just off him, in all honesty. He pretty much saved the day for that game.
Defy: He held snipe at third level BR, and we couldn’t really do anything.
MLG: Vash had a double-kill right at the end that bought you guys the last couple seconds.
Gandhi: You got the one up top in the hill, and just destroyed two people.
Vash: Yeah, that was pretty clutch. I think when it came to grind time, Gandhi started trying real hard. Zyos was giving 100%, Defy was giving 100%, but when Gandhi’s making jokes, I dunno… When it seems like you’re gonna win an 11-game series, you just for some reason loosen up–you just don’t have your heart in the game.
Gandhi: My heart’s never in the game, though.
MLG: I don’t understand why that is. I mean, you were playing for a difference of several hundred dollars in that series. I just don’t understand why you wouldn’t be trying your hardest. You bothered to travel all the way out…
Gandhi: …I just can’t try my hardest.
Defy: I dunno. I was trying my hardest. I don’t want to lose a single game really.
Vash: That’s because you teamed with G-Spot, and you wanted to prove to him. That’s my opinion.
MLG: I kind of figured that teaming with Zyos would make for a more serious atmosphere on the team.
Gandhi: Actually, it made it less serious. He started singing to me, and I had to pick up the singing, so then there was more c***ing around.
MLG: Zyos was singing to you?
Gandhi: Yeah, he started singing “I Believe I Can Fly,” so I picked it up and finished the chorus.
Vash: He wasn’t taking it as seriously as I thought. Usually he’s always yelling, and just 100% focused, and this time we were all just having fun, honestly. On a competitive level for Nashville, I wouldn’t really say that I was trying my absolute best in the 4v4.
Defy: The other series were all good though. I liked them. Like H2K and Strafe n Run.
Vash: I’d really like to see H2K do well, because they’re a very underrated team, in my opinion.
MLG: Have you guys played online with them before?
Vash: No, but we played them at Philly–me, Mack, Defy and McGavin–and they were extremely good.
MLG: Well, Vash and Defy, you guys have been consistently coming to events all year, and you’ve appeared with many different lineups along the way. Do you guys ever feel that since you’ve been sort of pushed from the top three spots in recent months that you’re overlooked as pro players?
Vash: Yeah, all the time, but I don’t really care. It doesn’t really matter. I’m making money, so whatever.
Defy: We feel almost like we’re trapped in fourth place, because Killer N and Tupac quit, and it’s really, really hard to find two good people who we’ll mesh well with to break into the Top 3 again.
MLG: Defy, I saw in a lot of your games in Nashville that you seemed to be the player with the most kills and fewest deaths. Are you the all-time slayer for your team?
Defy: Not usually, but I was at that tournament, because Gandhi was picking up the ball and so was Zyos, and Vash does objective slaying, so…
MLG: Well, Gandhi is the “Ball Master 5000.”
Gandhi: That is right! I am the Ball Master 5000. Nobody else could’ve done that.
MLG: Vash and Defy, who do you guys see as your consistent lineup? I know that this team was pieced together for a one-time deal.
Vash: Well, we have a few people that we have in mind. We actually made a list of people. We obviously can’t break up any Top 3 teams because they’re all contracted and all that crap. They’re all sponsored and have really good teams, and they don’t need us at all. So we’re actually just looking for all-around good team players, and we have about a month-and-a-half to practice (before MLG Conference Championships), so if we took it 100% seriously, we’d do pretty good. We might be able to beat IGS or TmG–maybe 3D–if we practice all the time.
MLG: Detach, the very Best Gamer on Campus, has deemed MLG Nashville “Vashville” because you swept up first place in the FFA, the 4v4, and the Halo 1 2v2 side tourney. Were you proud of that accomplishment?
Vash: Yeah, it was cool. I had a really good time doing it. It built up a little bit of confidence for me. I didn’t really expect to win the FFA, but I tried my hardest, and I’m glad I did. People were leading me, like Blackjak, Mack and Gandhi, and I can’t let those kids beat me. Those kids suck! (joking)
MLG: Gandhi, how have things been working out with Karma in your full-time IGS lineup?
Gandhi: It’s a lot easier. Karma likes getting on (XBL to practice) and McGavin really didn’t.
Vash: McGavin’s still the man though. We miss McGavin.
MLG: Vash, why have you taken it upon yourself to act as the official information provider on the forums?
Vash: I get all these random noob messages on AIM. I get really angry when people ask me if 3D won Vegas, or if 3D is going to Nashville, or “How come you’re not on 3D?”
Gandhi: That’s why you’ve gotta have Noob Blocker. It’s a necessity.
Vash: There are all these things that are pretty much not true, other than IGS being cocky, so after a while it gets really annoying answering these questions on AIM.
MLG: You even showed up to defend Gandhi when everyone had a 10-page bash fest thread…
Vash: I only allow myself to bash Gandhi.
Gandhi: Seriously, noobs aren’t allowed. They’re like, “Win a tournament before you get cocky.” I just won Nashville, shut the f*** up!
Vash: Yeah, I’ve known Gandhi for two years, so I’ve got the right to bash on him. And they got a lot of things really wrong about him, and they sort of misjudged him, and they’re noobs so…
Defy: …They take it all too seriously. They don’t realize it’s just s*** talk. It’s just Gandhi. It’s just Gandhi being stupid
Vash: Gandhi’s 15. If he didn’t s*** talk, I wouldn’t even talk to him. Try to find a 15-year old who doesn’t act like that.
MLG: Why do you think you’re so misunderstood in the community Gandhi?
Gandhi: Because all the people who don’t understand me are in one huge group, and that’s “Huge Noobs.”
MLG: We’re gonna have six more threads about Gandhi after this interview.
Gandhi: I can’t wait. I’m happy.
MLG: We’ve got Conference Championships coming up, where things will get a lot more serious in terms of money. What do you think the competition is going to be like at these things?
Gandhi: Very good.
Vash: I don’t think every (invited) team is going to go to every Conference Championship. A lot of teams from back around MLG Houston, DC, fell off the map. TsK–I haven’t seen them play for a while… Nick and Pac are gone…
Defy: You still have XiT Woundz, H2K, Strafe n Run, Copywrited…
Vash: Yeah, but I don’t think they’ll all go to every Conference.
Defy: They’ll all go to one at least.
Vash: They’ll all bring their A-games, because it’s going to be for a lot of money. There’s no messing around at the Conferences, unless you’re Gandhi.
Gandhi: No, I gotta try. Or I gotta try to try.