insomnia63: Catching up with old friends – f00b
When I had a quick glance the other day on the insomnia63 sign up list, there was a group of names I recognised from the Counter-Strike: Source and early CS:GO days, that I hadn’t really seen in a long time. The team named “Reborn” hosts a wealth of former old talent, including Matthew “Holl1s” Hollis and Aidan “foolio” Wood The team is spearheaded by Jay “f00b” Davenport, the player we are interviewing now.
Jay “f00b” Davenport is the subject of this interview, which kicks off a series of interviews ahead of insomnia63, with a whopping £30,000 prize pool. We should see many teams head to the NEC in Birmingham next week to take part. UKCSGO decided to do some proper coverage and get people hyped ahead of the event.
Jay, currently is the leader for the team formerly known as Reborn. They have since decided to change their name to something more appropriate after they realised their combined age is around 160 years old. So, Jay, is the in game leader for CbYd (Could be Your dad). He has played in a variety of teams over the years including Dragon eSports (at epic20 and insomnia60), IWT, GSG, Pub Aftershock and Fragmasters (Darren would kill me for using that name now).
His history goes all the way back to insomnia29 (he really is old by the way), and has been to most iSeries since that point, so he’s been around the block and knows how to play Counter-Strike.
Could Be Your Dad (or Team Reborn if people prefer), mostly consists of older gentlemen. First off, we have foolio who played in all the big established UK Counter-Strike communities back in the day, Ministry Of Darkness, Rasta and Fragmasters. Someone else who had also frequently visited those same communities is Hollis, who hasn’t really been seen in CS:GO due to all his real life commitments. Scruffy0 who went on to win insomniaSCOTLAND (if you can even count that as an achievement) has played in teams such as Team Hive and playhack, is the only one in this team with considerable aim. Rounding up the team is kingowl who is fairly unknown in the grand scheme of things.
The general jist of the team is that they hadn’t been to LAN for a few years, and that they decided to shake off the cobwebs and have a weekend away from the wives and children and all the normal everyday routines, and see if they still have what it takes to compete with the better players in the scene.
Talk me around your team, and the roles within your team?
I’m the main caller, we do have a few strats but we like to play mostly on the fly so it keeps me busy. Scruffy0 is our awper and outright fragging machine. We generally point him in the direction of the enemy and let him do his stuff. Hollis is support so he’s good for the occasional flashbang. He doesn’t really have a role though, so he kind of fits in wherever there’s a gap or when we can’t hold a site, we basically send him in.
King is the silent assassin, he doesn’t say much but he lets his aim do the talking. He’s Alex’s backup player. Foolio is our lurker / bait. Generally we let him go in first and while the enemy is busy shooting at him, we shoot them. Seems to work pretty well and he doesn’t mind being bottom of the scoreboard.
How do you see your team, and do you feel confident in progressing at insomnia63?
We’ve been playing together for about 6 months and it’s been a challenge with a few of us having children and King working away so we’ve had a bag of mixed results. One minute we’re amazing and the next we couldn’t hit a barn door with a bazooka from five yards. We’re hoping that without the distraction of wives and children that we can focus 100% on the game and hopefully produce some good results. I’m interested to see the format the tournament takes as I’ve seen talk of the Swiss format which will be a nice change. I think for us the pressure is off and most teams will expect to beat us so we will just relax and have fun. The plan is always to get through to the main bracket so that is what we are aiming for. Anything above that will be a bonus.
The last time we saw you Jay, was back at insomnia60 with Dragon eSports where you finished 13th – 16th? What happened to that team, and how come you had a break post insomnia60?
We signed a contract with Dragon for Epic and Insomnia and it was the agreement that we would play for them for those two tournaments and decide what to do afterwards. We played well at Epic and things were going well but in the lead up to iSeries we had multiple roster changes and spent the best part of 2 months with different people. It was no surprise when we struggled at iseries and were beaten by the 9th and 1st seeds. From there the team decided to take a break and I returned to family life. It was only after Foolio had sent me multiple messages asking me to come and play (and the wife going on holiday so I had time to play). I really liked the guys and have played with most of them in other teams so it progressed from there really. I think you never really leave the CS bug.
Turning to insomnia63 next week, what are your thoughts on iSeries as an event, what attracted you and your team to the event, and how do you see the event in terms of success?
Iseries has always been my favourite event. While I love epic and how intimate that is as a venue there is something about the hustle and bustle of a large LAN. I enjoy the NEC although you’ll never be able to beat Newbury as a venue. I think EPIC came round a bit fast for us to get enough practice in. It was only last week we realised the level of prize money which is up for grabs. I think that is fantastic for the scene and don’t think anyone can have complaints about CS not being supported enough. I think if the event is as well run as I saw at insomnia60 it will be a success.
How confident are you about your team’s chances at insomnia63? Where are you realistically looking to finish?
I think that will depend who you ask in our team. It will depend how many teams attend but I expect the quality of teams to be excellent. Top 8 for me would be the aim and not unreasonable for the players we have but top 12 would be realistic based on how our practice has gone. It will depend on who turns up for our team though. We don’t really have great expectations because then we cant be disappointed.
Is there any team you are potentially looking at, like a dark horse to be worried about?
Everyone, no but seriously while we’ve been playing for 6 months we haven’t really played any attention to the UK scene so its reached the point where we don’t know who a lot of the people we’re playing are and we don’t really care. We know Endpoint are going, CEX too and we’ve seen / played ec1s team so they would be teams we’d like to avoid, at least in the first game but with the amount of money on offer I expect everyone to put up a decent fight. Are you going? Maybe your team…..
Editors Note: No I’m not going, so no need to fear my super bad mix team which includes Davros, Blanks, Damage & Yakkkk. The five grandfathers of the UK CS scene.
In your honest opinion, who is the star player on your team, and outside of just the game, what do they bring to the table?
In the game its Alex when he’s on point he’s the star in the game. Whilst I’d like to say his game brain could do with some improvement sometimes you just cant beat someone with raw aim sometimes. Outside of the game I’d say I keep us all ticking over with the constant banter and life struggles. I think we all bring something to the table with Foolio getting the brunt of the jokes and abuse.
That’s what every team needs, a good atmosphere and everyone on the same page.
Looking more centrally at insomnia63, how do you feel about the £30k prize pool, is it a step in the right direction?
Do you like the prize distribution, where the Top 16 instead of the Top 8 get a share of the pool?
Absolutely. Its not massive amounts of money if you’re not in the top 8 so I see it as more of a token payment. It will definitely improve the interest of the teams that don’t get through to the main bracket. Its just another step in improving the competition as a whole, and giving more money to some of the smaller teams out there.
What are your thoughts on the UK Scene currently, do you feel it is a much tougher scene now or do you feel there is still much to do within the scene?
It’s much tougher now but everything about it has changed. We’re playing against people who are playing 6 competitive games a day. The difficulty is teams and names change from one month to the next so its hard to keep track of who the decent players are. Compared to teams from other countries though we’re miles behind. That is obvious from the fact there’s no UK teams at the major.
You could say that Smooya being at the Major with BIG is a pretty huge thing for the scene, as well as dephh with compLexity too. Do you think there could be more success stories with more UK players breaking out in future in other international teams?
Are you currently competing anywhere else, or is this team more of a 1 LAN only team?
No we’re just practicing for LAN. There’s no plans made after yet, but I know 4 of us want to carry on playing. I think if Foolio does though his missus will leave him. We will look what comes up after LAN and see if our schedules allow us to enter a few online competitions.
Let’s settle a small debate considering it’s something that has played on mind over the years. The Counter-Strike: Source UK scene or the Counter-Strike: Global Offensive UK scene? Which was better?
Shout out to my wife Justyna, thanks for bringing me all the food and snacks.. shout out to the old IWT guys, miss you guys and a shout out to Foolio for coping with the abuse about how bad he is in good spirits!
Could Be Your Dad lineup for insomnia63 is as follows:
Jay “f00b” Davenport
Aidan “foolio” Wood
Matthew “Holl1s” Hollis
David “King” Franklin
Alex “ScruFfyO” Hoyle