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Team Ascension Interviews: Helpmeplox and Ramono

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With Team Ascension's win in the $400K USD Fastest Dungeon Raid Competition, we wanted to learn a little bit more about how they did it. Fortunately Helpmeplox and Ramono were gracious enough to join us for an interview on how it all came together!

Netease:  How did you hear about Crusaders of Light, what got you interested in the game?

Helpmeplox: A friend of mine that I play a lot of other games with told me that CoL was similar to WoW in many regards. I had played WoW for years so naturally I figured I would give CoL a try. The thing I found most interesting about the game was how you can take a MMORPG, which usually isn’t casual, and bring it to a mobile device (which most of the time tends to be casual)... and have it work well.
 
Ramono: I was a player on Surgewind Wilds. I heard about Crusaders of Light from my friends, they were having fun and I was getting bored so I downloaded the game on google play
 
 
Netease:  How did Team Ascension form?

Ramono: Ascension is the guild we’re in, and Essantra is our guild leader. Ascension was originally formed in the Au server Surgewind. However, for the contest, it’s not just us… Ascension didn't win alone. There's a lot of good players that helped with the winning run.
 
Helpmeplox: Our team wanted our group to be based mostly on merit. As the competition grew more fierce we realized that if we wanted to win, we would need the help of top players from other guilds and so we talked with those guild leaders and they compiled a list of people they thought would be up to the challenge. After a few days of just running dps checks on both heroic dummy and aoe, and weighing what would be more important, we decided who would be in the 40man run. We also had about 5-10 subs that could fill in immediately if a core member had to drop for any reason.

 
Netease:  How did the team prepare for your winning run, and what was the process for forming your winning strategy?

Ramono: Me, babyjesus and Skyren asked people to check their dps with a lvl. 48 dummy. We figured that whoever was able to hit 10kdps or higher had a high chance to join our speedrun. Babyjesus was our main organizer he was like the ambassador for us, and Halie was the main strategist with other people like Baluga, Aeon and Helpmeplox. 
 
Helpmeplox: To prepare we had almost all our members running tests of their own trying to max their damage numbers by changing sets around, as well as people who were theorycrafting the best ways to move around the dungeon. For example we used a lot of predetermined grouping for adds and leader swapping. Those each required us to be in a cleared version of the raid and running around the obstacles to determine how to shave off seconds. A few of our members even drew diagrams for easy viewing for other team members that couldn’t be in those test runs, so that even if we subbed they could be current with what we were trying to do.

 
Netease: Can you describe your overall strategy/approach, and how it worked?

Helpmeplox: So the core of our strategy was to max our aoe dps as much as possible and to be able to quickly burst down the packs of mobs in the least amount of time possible. To do this we utilized the leader swapping function with scout rolls, as well as having set groups jump to the next mob pack while some of our more single target oriented dps finished off the remaining mobs health.
 
Ramono: Carena, one of the best tanks on our server, regrouped all adds besides the magma golem 1st boss while our tank (babyjesus) endured it with Oasis or Kaiziel healing him. We made sure to remove proc sets from skyblaze.... so it wouldn't inflict damage. 
 
Helpmeplox: For bosses, we had grouped all the first sets of mobs leading up to the first boss and stacked them where he would spawn in order to have all of our sets already down. When his health got around 30% I would start heading for the barrier and get there as it was going down. From there I would run to a middle point in the adds so they would stack around me and all the dps would port in and attack them. The moment I saw them port to me and start fighting, I would leave and go to the next set and group them in our predetermined spot and call for them to jump to me again. We did this for each set of mobs leading up to Gorghana.
 
Our strat for Gorghana was to have our most defensive player tank the boss in the middle, to allow for warrior dps and sets to go off. At appropriate times our tank would run to the lava to pick up the boss when it teleported there. We had our ranged damage dealers stay in melee range for their sets and then run to the grate between the lava and the middle of the map so when the boss teleported they would be in range the entire time.
 
Ramono: For the Gorghana fight to work all our main single target DPS needed to be near Gorghana, and five other rangers had to be by the grate. The jobs of the tamers were to avoid the pentagrams; while the tamers were dodging the pentagrams that left other people free to ignore the orbs! With those elements down we just kept on attacking till we killed it.
 
 
Netease:  What was your team class composition and how did you decide upon it?

Ramono: Just get the best among the rest.... because this is a speedrun the thing that matters the most is DPS. We had some mages swap to verity, some Warriors swapped from fang to exec. We did a lot of path swapping, and by the way you need forest guide even if it's level 1 path because you just need that tempest debuff for adds.
 
Helpmeplox: Our main goal was to get max aoe dps for the mobs. After all our tests we found Mystics and Warriors to be about equal (in our group at least), in terms of AOE, with Rangers falling behind by a decent amount depending on star cloak procs. Since that was the case we chose to run with as many Warriors and Mystics as we could, but still bringing in some Scouts and Tamers for their good single target DPS and buffs respectively.
 
Netease:  How many runs did you folks make? What run was the winning one?

Ramono: I didn't count, but I think complaining and discussing takes more time than running.
 
Helpmeplox: If I had to guess I’d say no more than 30-45 runs in total. Our winning run was in the last hour of the competition when the raid had already been cleared by people and closed for the other server which helped to reduce all our member lag a lot.
 
Netease:  Were you feeling confident in your time?
Ramono: YEAAAAAAAAAAAAH!
 
Helpmeplox: We’d heard that the the Immortals Team had run some crazy fast runs, but I’d say overall we were pretty confident in our time. Regardless of whether we were going to win or not, we all were proud that we could even challenge their time.
 
Netease:  Any advice for aspiring raiders out there?

Helpmeplox: The best advice I can give for people wanting to raid is to make friends in game. Find people who are better than you and try to group with them as much as possible, because surrounding yourself with better players forces you to become better yourself. Learn to take criticism and not flip out. Many people don’t mean it to be an insult when they give advice, they just want to help you do better. Lastly, you don't need to be pay to win to be competitive. Yes people are going to spend money, and yes it helps, but we have a few members who have spent little to no money on the game and were in our winning 40 man team.
 
Ramono: I am a free to play player. Part of the reason I played this game was for the competition and of course I wanted the money. Ten thousand dollars is a lot here in the Philippines! At first when I saw Team Immortals records I was demoralized, and didn't know what to do, but I realized that we're not the only guild here in Thundercall Forest. What if we collaborate and put our best dps together? So we did it and did our best! The only advice I have for aspiring raiders is to be patient; if RNG punches you in the guts... try again. Don't lose hope and never give up!!

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Congratulations to Ascension team and Netease staff of course.

Hopefully there will be other competitions on Crusaders of light soon. First because it's very interesting for those who don't even know how far a mobile game can be optimized for mmorpg raiding and usual habits of this kind of games.

Next because e-sports competitions have already pulled great gamers from a game to another wich resounds all around gaming community platforms like a successfull transition between the conventionnal and challenger plateforms of entertainment. 

IGN : Gdie / Server : Forest Valley

Ps: sorry for my bad english , I am french ^.^

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