Interview with Heist

Interview by bland. Flavor by Lady Salamence. Art by elcheeso.
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I shut the door, blocking out the frigid air and white snow. After settling down, I acknowledge a couple of figures hanging around, clearly not willing to brave the snow to get to anywhere else they want to be. I make a quick call to my interviewee, to confirm he's on his way to The Competitor offices to conduct the interview. A few minutes later, he steps in the room, sits down, and nods that he's ready to start the interview.

bland

Hey Heist, thanks for taking the time out to do this interview. Congrats on your run in this year's Grand Slam.

Heist

No problem.

bland

Going to get right into the questions, what has been your highlight moment of the slam so far?

Heist

Uhh... Would have to be watching Bad Ass vs Bloo. It was a very good series to witness as a spectator.

bland

And as a player, have you had any memorable matches?

Heist

Hmm.... My games vs Malekith were pretty formulaic—perhaps the standout was when I played SoulWind in the UU Open—the first one, though. The second one was anything but.

bland

Haha, care to give us details as to why?

Heist

He wasn't prepared for Taunt + Will-o-Wisp Mew and when you are weak to it it's generally impossible to outmaneuver it.

bland

It's my understanding that Mew's a tad unpredictable to begin with.

Heist

Yea, he was using a stall team and nothing could 2HKO it I believe.

bland

I'd really like to have seen that match...

Heist

The hail vs rain one?

bland

Yeah.

Heist

Cause the Mew game was pretty boring lol. Let me find it.

Heist pulls out a little electronic device, and starts scrolling through his files. After a wide variety of facial expressions pass over his face, from rage to pride to joy and everything in between, he looks up and shakes his head.

Heist

Yeah, I thought I might have the replay, but I cant find it.

bland

It's alright, don't worry about it

I sit there for a bit, looking at my sheet—going into the interview, I had so many good questions, but now none of them seem worth asking...

bland

What's your favorite Slam tier to play?

Heist

RU, undeniably.

bland

Any reason behind it?

Heist

RU has a nice balance and a wealth of options. I find the other tiers can often be too hazards-centric—it is hard to set and maintain entry hazards in RU. I also feel that the tier is still somewhat unexplored.

I nod my head in understanding, as he goes on.

Heist

As evidenced by seeing still a lot of innovation in Grand Slam matches to this day.

bland

Anything particularly innovative you've personally seen?

Heist

I'll keep my sets to myself but one example would have to be august's team he used vs Bad Ass. august brought six Flying-type Pokémon and very nearly won.

My mind cannot help but think of a popular tournaments player who very much likes birds.

Heist

You could not get away with a team like that in most of the other Grand Slam tiers.

bland

Haha perhaps once this is over, august will share!

My eyes widen in awe.

bland

That's gold! Impressive, too.

Heist

Rotom-Mow / Natu / Moltres / Scyther / Sigilyph / Braviary was his lineup.

I think for a second—isn't Rotom...

Heist

My mistake, five Flying-type Pokémon.

bland

Looks similar to something I ran for Monotype Tourney—that is very impressive.

Heist's mouth draws into a shape of what looks like a smile before continuing.

Heist

Yea, it takes a lot of guts to bring something like that.

bland

august is certainly a ballsy player.

Another voice piped up—apparently someone else was listening in on the interview, and was interested in asking a question.

BKC

If I may, who did you think was the favorite to win the entire slam, both prior to the season and after the playoffs began?

Heist

I knew that if I were to make the final I'd be up against either Bloo or Bad Ass and if I can manage to beat koko that prediction will be true. I just feel like while there were a lot of good players participating like Ciele, august, and Malekith, they weren't as focused on the tournament as those two. Bloo would probably have been the outright favorite though.

bland

Have there been any players you've been looking forward to playing? Similarly, have there been any players you've dreaded once you saw the lineups?

Heist

I always look forward to playing matches deep into tournaments, up until right before, but that feeling goes away after the first turn. But uh... I was hoping to get revenge on Nelson for last year but he didn't play this year I think... Oh yeah—I never like to play vs ShakeItUp.

BKC nods in approval, adding that nobody likes playing against ShakeItUp.

Heist

He plays very aggressively and always has momentum. Additionally, he also has outrageous luck. I think I played shake in the UU Open quarterfinals.

cbt's head pops up from behind his computer, where he was fact-checking a previous statement of Heist. Or maybe he just knew everything beforehand, but that idea is a bit scarier.

cbt

Actually Nelson did play but he didn't do as well.

Heist

Ah, OK.

bland

Has anyone superseded your expectations in this year's Slam?

Heist

Hmm.... Yes; a couple of people.

bland

Anyone you're willing to name?

Heist

OK, I am surprised with how close blarajan vs Bloo was and blarajan also beat Ciele quite convincingly (with a fair bit of luck).

bland

Haha, typical blarajan.

Heist

There's also kokoloko who had to bank a lot on his UU ability to do well in Slam and he barely lost UU Open, losing to Fuzznip in the last round in UU. aerialace TM40 too kinda forgot about him.

bland

Lol—we all saw what happened in UU Slam finals and in UU in general.

BKC

You mentioned preparing, and besides the standard of building/testing teams, do you have any pre-game rituals? for example, sacrificing goats (or as I've heard from user: Eo Ut Mortus, in your case, calves...)

My head swivels towards BKC—I make out what looks like animal hair on his coat before Heist responds.

Heist

Lol. Sometimes I like to just play a game beforehand usually vs Eo to help get my confidence up. Na... I make sure I have a couple of tabs open of Cherubi's Damage Calculator, put in some tunes. Although after I battle I realize I have no recollection of what I was listening to.

Heist gets three quick beeps on his device, and quickly excuses himself, promising he'll return in a minute. BKC stares at his retreating figure rush through the doorway, and jots down a quick question on a piece of paper and places it on the table before leaving the building himself.

BKC

Last question from me: If you are to somehow fall to kokoloko, who will win the Second Official Grand Slam, him or user: Bad Ass?

On Heist's return, he looks at the peice of paper, nods, and turns to me.

Heist

Uh, probably Bad Ass. I feel like I've been underestimating koko this entire interview which is kind of a bad idea since we are about to play soon lol but if koko does beat me and I play as well as I could have it will definitely be a tight game.

bland

Is there a tier you feel he has the advantage in?

Heist

koko's crux is UU and Bad Ass is quite good at UU as well, so that would definitely be one game to watch out for.

Heist

Wait, did you mean koko or Bad Ass?

bland

koko.

bland

Or one you feel you've already been 1-0 down in before you even start?

Heist

Nope. I am actually really surprised with how well my UU team has turned out so we will see how that goes. I haven't really had much LC practice and koko used to play LC a lot so I think he might have the edge in that battle.

cbt

Has the 1st tier been decided upon or is that too early to call?

Heist

I'll be selecting Uber for game 1.

bland

With what you've said, these will certainly be interesting games. We wish you the best of luck in all of them!

A head pops through the door, and a faint bleating can be heard outside.

BKC

Make sure to sacrifice a goat before playing, I swear it works!

Heist

Yes, one shoutout to kokoloko.

With that, thanks, wishes of good lucks, and congratulations are passed around, and Heist leaves. cbt later swears that he saw BKC give Heist a goat outside the door, but the security cameras were sadly disabled, so it went unconfirmed.