Having been trained both at an American gaming house and the StarTale house in Korea, Ryan "State" Visbeck has plenty of diverse StarCraft experience. He’ll need it as one of the eight competitors in next weekend’s Training Grounds in Orlando. Red Bull eSports asked State about his pedigree and his new side gig as a StarCraft columnist.
You’ve lived and trained in dedicated gaming houses in both the US and Korea. How would you compare these experiences? Was the training approach similar in both countries?
Having a place to live and train is an advantage wherever you are. The advantages of training with StarTale in Korea were massive however.
The training regimen was a lot more intense at the StarTale house. We often practiced upwards of 70 hours per week, but it was made easier by how friendly the players and coaches were. Learning firsthand from players like SaSe and PartinG was an experience, but what really had an impact on me was how adamant the StarTale players were about practice. It was very easy to stay motivated in that atmosphere.
I would love a chance to train in Korea again with StarTale or Axiom. To be honest, one of my favorite parts about living in both houses was the free Red Bull.
You’ve been writing articles on eSports for a few months now; what has the community reaction been to your pieces? Is there any particular theme or topic you like writing about most?
I really appreciate how well my articles are being received. I’ve always had a passion for writing and Game Front giving me a chance to write about StarCraft is fantastic.
I think that I most enjoy writing guides. I really enjoy talking about the game and I have a lot of fun breaking down some of my favorite players. I’ve always been shy in front of the camera, so this gives me a way to give back to the community.
In a recent article you wrote, you broke down a match opening from WCS Season 1 Finals, analyzing the strategy used. What do you think about the format of Red Bull Training Grounds, with the unique component of post-match analysis with players and the casters – does that help the viewers at home improve their game?
While I really enjoy breaking down games, it’s a very hard process that takes me a lot of time. I’m really impressed by how much you guys accomplish in analysis between each match. It’s a great way to get the fans watching at home thinking about the game in a way they might not have considered before.
You took a bit of a break for school; what made you recommit to StarCraft II?
I love the game and the community and I really want a chance to train in Korea again. Though I will eventually focus again on college full-time, I don’t want to miss this opportunity to do what I love.
You’re friends with some of the players that participated in the first Red Bull Training Grounds, last month; did you tune in to watch them compete?
Golden is one of my favorite players and we were roommates in San Diego. It was a lot of fun meeting Kane at the SHOUTcraft America finals in New York.
I was at HomeStory Cup during the last Training Grounds, so I wasn’t able to watch them compete live. I did catch up on the finals afterwards, however. Sound and Golden played a really entertaining series—I always enjoy watching them play.
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