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We’re placing the spotlight on Hatespawn, and Nutella Covered Balls, the champions of Strengthstorm, Nox’ summer PvP Tournament.

Prior to winning Strengthstorm, what was your PvP experience?

Hatespawn: Actually, I've had plenty. A lot of the high levels on Nox have fought my Iop and Sacrier back when open world PvP was enabled, and I was well-known on the server for getting into 6v6 fights with Nutella and the rest of our guild, against other guilds like Black Black Club, and Rarehunters. Since I started really, PvP has been a main focus for me.

Nutella Covered Balls: Before this tourney, most of my experience has been fighting Brakmar on Nox, since back when open world PvP was a thing, they were our main opponents. I've done quite a few 6v6s and my fair share of 1v1s which definitely helped for the tournament.

What attracted you in joining the tournament?

Hatespawn: Honestly, Tulish just messaged me, asking if it sounded like fun. Later that day, Nutella had asked if I wanted to partner with him, and that's kinda what sealed the deal. I'd been looking into other tournaments Barinade had run, but I never really got involved, since disorganized PvP was my strong suit.

Nutella Covered Balls: I like to compete in any organized PvP that I can since it more or less levels the playing field, and once Hate agreed to come with me that was basically it.

How did you prepare for the tournament?

Hatespawn: Well, we knew right out of the gate that we had to watch for the Rarehunters team, due to our experiences with them in the past. When going into the 2nd Round Nutella and I had spoken a lot about possible strategies, both before and during the fights. We ended up sticking with the same plan after our loss, which was "Kill the Enutrof". Otherwise, we were always ready for the fight.

Nutella Covered Balls: Hate and I theorycrafted a few ideas to counter the Sacrifice meta, mainly using Elio's stabilize and blind, which worked relatively well during a few fights. Other than that, we really didn't do much to prepare.

What’s your team’s biggest strength and weakness (if any)?

Hatespawn: Our strength is probably the builds we use. Each of our characters have incredible survivability and damage potential, which is what separated our Sacrier from the others in the tournament, and my Iop from other damage dealers. Weakness... Well, the lack of ranged damage on anyone other than the Eliotrope, who needed to be 'zerked to do much as far as that goes. We just compensated by being robust and hard hitting.

Nutella Covered Balls: Our team's biggest strengh is definitely our sheer damage output. We've learned from previous PvP experience that momentum is everything and pumping damage is the best way to accomplish that.

What was the tournament like for you overall?

Hatespawn: Well, the 1st Round was disappointing, due to only two matches. The 2nd Round was nerve racking due to having five fights with the team we were the most weary of. I really would've liked to fight Black Black Club, or earn kamas for the win... But I really enjoyed it. Barinade really did a good job with this. Looking forward to the next one! Hopefully the format attracts new competition.

Nutella Covered Balls: It was pretty fun. We knew from the start that Rarehunters would be our scariest opponent, so having to fight them 5 times was pretty fun. I feel like more teams next time would make it more fun since a lot of the matches were repeats.

What do you think made the difference for you to win this tournament?

Hatespawn: Honestly it was maybe 40% skill, 30% gear, and 30% timing. Right from the start, our wins against Rarehunters were 100% based on our ability to one turn the Enutrof. We surprised him the first time, and any others was just overcoming his attempts to prevent the repetition of it. Our characters packing such a huge punch definitely made the biggest difference, though. For the first few turns it was always about getting prepared to focus the Enutrof.

Nutella Covered Balls: I think there were 2 main things on our team compared to our opponents that made the difference. First being that if you look at every other Sac that competed, they either focused tankyness or damage. If you compare that with Hatespawn, he hit as hard as the damage ones, and was almost as tanky as the tanks. Second, we actually did something to counter the tank Sacs and we had the damage to kill things in that 1 off turn from Sacrifice.

Do you have any advise for other players who want to do PvP?

Hatespawn: Just get gear, have fun. I'd say any class is viable in a 3v3 or 4v4 scenario, you just need a good team to back you up. Get your friends together and have a blast. Other guilds who normally don't PvP showed up to Strengthstorm and had a great time. Would love to see more of that in the next tournament!

Nutella Covered Balls: Honestly, Sacrifice is completely busted right now, so just couple a Sac with some damage and you've got a fully functioning team.

Anything that you would like to add?

Hatespawn: Sacrifice kind of made the fight drag on. I'd like to see some kind of ban system, or just outright saying "Sacrifice isn't allowed". I don't think it's fair for the most well-rounded class to be able to cause havoc throughout each fight of the tournament.

Nutella Covered Balls: I think Sacrifice makes these tourneys longer and more boring than they need to be, so I would like to see something done about that. Other than that I had a lot of fun and can't wait for the next one.