Player Name: Ghostayame
MLG: Tell us all what you’ve been up to since Dallas ended?
Ghostayame: Well, I pretty much took one of those breaks from Halo. I got home, and just caught up with everyone I had been skipping out on. Almost every friend I have has free time at night, but for me, that’s my busiest practice period. So when a tournament’s over, I actually get to see more people than I had before. I also got to visit my twin brother, Brent (the original Ghostayame). Lastly, my dad came up to Penn State to take me to the Penn State – Syracuse football game, and also to play a round of golf.
MLG: I have a feeling that a lot of people still don’t know the story behind the original Ghostayame. Break it down for them one last time.
Ghostayame: Well, I had never really played Xbox Live before and one Christmas my brother got Xbox live, and he made the Gamertag “Ghostayame.” I just ended up playing on it more than him, so he pretty much gave it to me.
MLG: This is definitely one of the more unique stories behind a pro Gamertag.
Ghostayame: Yeah. (laughs) I was also a little bit better than him.
MLG: We talked about this in our Timeout before Dallas, but a lot of things have changed since then. Are you back in college?
Ghostayame: Actually, I’m taking this Fall Semester off from Penn State to give MLG my all, but I’m returning right back in this following Spring.
MLG: So you’re fully focused and ready to give it everything. Do you think this is the type of thing you’ve needed in order to reach that next level in Halo 3?
Ghostayame: No I wouldn’t really say that. It’s just pretty hard trying to focus on almost two “full-time jobs.” You go to school to earn an education. If you have time, you get a part-time job. However, being on top cannot just be a part-time job. The past two seasons have been immensely competitive, so if you aren’t the best with time management, then you’ll have trouble finding time to play and study; plus with team changes, everyone is on different schedules, whether it’s because of everyday life, or even just time zones.
MLG: What advice would you give gamers out there who are just now experiencing this in their first year of college?
Ghostayame: I would tell all freshmen MLG players to make sure you finish your work before you play. If you don’t have the self discipline to stop from playing an hour into it, you’re going to find it tough to finish assignments with no parents around. So make sure you don’t procrastinate with easy things, and then you can play for as much as you want.
MLG: Momayame would be proud. So let’s shift focus from your personal life, to your professional life. Let’s get it all out there – Tell us your point of view of what happened with Instinct in Dallas.
Ghostayame: Looking back on Dallas, I have just a confused image as to what really happened. We went into the tournament after winning a LAN against FB, so we were pretty confident. Now, the LAN was definitely a huge help. We constantly were working out kinks in our gameplay, but what it comes down to is the tournament itself. I felt that as a team we were just playing differently. I know personally I didn’t shoot my best, but I still feel that I played to the best of my ability and knowledge at the time. However, what I think disrupted our teamwork was just us as a team. At the LAN, we were trying to work together so hard, and it worked. But at the tournament, each person got farther into their own grooves and we strayed apart.
MLG: Was that it?
Ghostayame: Another problem was just team trust in general. I felt secure when playing together, but outside the game, something just felt off. We all got along, but just didn’t have the same interests or even some mentalities. I always try to team with people that I can hang out with, but I didn’t want to pass up the Instinct opportunity – so I took it. But I came to realize that we are all very different people, and with practice we could have become great, but if someone looses a pinch of confidence in another, then we would fall to pieces. When we played the bigger named teams, we either went into overdrive, or got 3-0′d. There were some games where we were just on different planes of thinking, whether to rush, or sit back. It was just sloppy.
MLG: Well, regardless of placing, do you feel it was the right move for everyone to part ways, or do you think there was potential there?
Ghostayame: Well, to be honest, I do believe there was potential, but not as a complete four man team. Someone had to change – either me or Neighbor. Obviously he is the team Captain, so there’s not too much of a chance there. Neighbor is an amazing player who understands the game very well. However our mindsets are very different. I’m confident in almost any situation I’m put into, no matter what person is playing next to me. If they don’t fulfill their requirements as a teammate, then they are just too selfish. And at the same time, I treat each player how I want to be treated – kind of like the “Golden Rule.” This way when I know I need help in a situation, my teammate won’t just try to stay alive or keep a power weapon. Now, if everyone trusts each other and listens, you can be unstoppable. The more selfish style of play works also, you just need to be on the same page — And we weren’t. When I would charge out hoping to have my teammate charging with me, it would be a little bit of a delay. Pretty much we were just always two or three seconds off of each other’s mindset.
MLG: After Dallas came to an end, tell us how everything played out and how you became a member of Classic.
Ghostayame: Like I said, I was hanging out with my friends catching up. About a week or two later, Instinct was playing on fake accounts trying out StrongSide and FearItself. After trying to get a hold of my team, I finally got a call back from Roy confirming that they were trying both players out and they’d let me know the outcome. A few days later, I got a call from Roy saying they replaced me with FearItSelf, and I haven’t really heard from any of them since. So with that, I started my search for a new team. I tried out for Heaven & Earth in place of Perplexity, Believe the Hype in place of Demon D, and Classic in place of Legend. After playing with everyone, Classic seemed to fit me best. I wish I could team with Cpt. Anarchy again, but players and teams just didn’t work out right. So now, I’m a few weeks in on practicing with Soldier, Best Man, and Chig on Classic.
MLG: Aside from Meadowlands, Classic has been really strong this year. They really seem like they could be on the verge of something big. What do you think of the team so far?
Ghostayame: I think they’re all really talented players that just need the right practice plan to win. Now, back in the early days of Halo 3, they placed 2nd with a good practice regimen. But after being on Instinct for an event, I saw what playing 100% really meant. I think that all we need to do to place well at the next event is to give every practice our all. At least one of us always seems distracted, and I think that with enough undivided attention, we could pull some big upsets come Anaheim.
MLG: Is there anything that has impressed you so far?
Ghostayame: Chig is an amazing sniper, not necessarily the best shot, but just how he uses it. He knows when to push, when to sit back, when to body shot, or when to just plain stay alive. Soldier is just a good teammate who initiates the charge almost every time. He listens to call outs pretty well and he has a really solid BR. Best Man is just an all around good player. Don’t really know many negatives of this guy. He’s a H2 FFA Jumper who is now a nasty Halo 3 4v4 player who still kept his BR – just finally got some smarts. (laughs)
MLG: Have you guys thought about a pre-Anaheim LAN?
Ghostayame: LAN wise, we wanted to LAN with Str8, but Chig can’t do it for the specific dates. So we’ll probably end up LAN’ing Final Boss. We’re in talks with them right now.
MLG: In retrospect, do you still feel as though leaving Carbon was the best thing to do personally?
Ghostayame: Well I don’t know if I mentioned this pre-Dallas, but the reason I left Carbon was because I was going to quit due to placings. I felt that it was just time to move on with my life. But with an offer to a Top 3 team, I couldn’t refuse. On top of that, I know that if I was on Carbon still, I would have liked to team with Cpt Anarchy and I don’t know how that would have worked out. I know that post-Columbus, Shockwave wanted something different too, it was just fortunate that I left and Carlos got the boot.
MLG: What is your relationship like with Shockwave nowadays?
Ghostayame: The way I’d put it is that the teams that Shockwave puts together are normally all mature players who you can respect and talk to in and out of tournaments. So, it’s not just Shockwave, but any Carbon player that I still have good relations with – or at least I’d like to think I do. (laughs) We still hang out at the tournaments, but playing competitive halo is just our job and we love to do it. It’s sweet making friends along the way.
MLG: And as you’ve mentioned, yourself and Cpt Anarchy remain close, right?
Ghostayame: Yeah, we’re best friends. He’s actually filled in on Heaven & Earth for Perplexity. He’ll be teaming with my old Carbon teammate, Karma. He was originally looking frantically for the right team, and then it turned into any team, but he ended up probably getting the best spot out there for him. It worked out well for both of us
MLG: True or False: Mommyame has more forum posts than you do. (Yes, Ghost’s mom posts on the MLG forums)
Ghostayame: False. Thankfully… or I mean… hopefully? (laughs)
MLG: True or False: You could beat Puckett at Halo: CE while blindfolded.
Ghostayame: True. Even on Sidewinder
MLG: True or False: If you had a nickel for every time your name was mispronounced, you’d retire at an early age.
Ghostayame: True. In fact, I’d retire tomorrow. (laughs)
MLG: One last thing – There’s a very high probability that you will be playing against Instinct in Round 2 of Anaheim. Thoughts?
Ghostayame: Anaheim will be Judgment Day.