WHEN ONIC PH first stood in the World Championships, they were heavily favored to proceed to the playoff rounds. Though they were up against the legendary EVOS Legends team from Indonesia, they were also placed against two enigmas in Japan’s 10s Gaming Plus and CIS’ Deus Vult in Group D.
But the results didn’t favor the Filipino squad as they were immediately booted out in the group stages, in a baptism of fire from EVOS Legends' 2-0 sweep.
But the biggest surprise came from another sweep from 10s Gaming Plus. Onic PH’s Head of Team Development, Carlo “Lark” Giron, personally witnessed that massive upset.
“To be honest back in M1, we were surprised with how 10s Gaming played because there was no YouTube video back then that would reveal their style, how they played. There were no other leaks or scrims,” said Carlo “Lark” Giron in a press conference.
How their M1 exit prepared them for the M3
If before Onic PH were fighting with their eyes closed, this time around, the team looks more polished with their preparations. With the game reaching the global stage and matches are becoming more publicly known, teams could easily scout their foes.
With the team facing the series' group of death, they'll need every ounce of preparation they can get.
“Now we are more focused more on Malaysian and Indonesian playstyle, so hindi na kami masyadong masu-surprise,” said Giron of the amount of data they've pored over in the lead-up to the world championships.
Given the advantage of competing with the more well-known teams, Onic have prepared their own list of surprises.
“Since we are very familiar with Onic Indonesia’s playstyle we are very much prepared for our first match,” he mused. “I know we are 100% ready with the draft even our coach mentioned we are very ready for this. We actually prepared a different lineup for M3 compared to MPL-PH grand finals which will really surprise our viewers and analysts.”
But their preparations aren’t just limited to the usual fluidity that Onic displayed in Season 8 or the deeper hero pool in their arsenal. They've even tried to get the team into the exact same headspace it needs once M3 commences.
“Before kami umalis ng Philippines, nag-setup kami sa bootcamp ng headsets, the same headsets that we are going to use here, same setup, para they get to feel how it works kapag onsite na,” said the Onic PH head.
He added: “Ang ginagawa pa namin habang naghe-headset sila, the background is super ingay, like naka-open lahat ng speakers so madaming distractions and dun malalaman kung gaano sila ka-focus.”