interviews • Jan 21, 2019
Interview with TSM Kaysid - '...It's not your choice to rebel or not play. You HAVE to adapt'
For today’s interview, we’ve got a hold of Karman "Kaysid" Sidhu of TSM to answer questions about the competitive Fortnite scene, life as a pro, and his opinions on recent patch changes and the Epic’s treatment of the competitive scene. For those who don’t know him, Kaysid is a competitive Fortnite player, previously on NRG and now currently on TSM. He has competed in many of the Epic sponsored tournaments in which he has got as high as 8th place in last year’s Fall Skirmish.
Was becoming a professional game player something you had always wanted? What do you think 8-year old you say if he knew that this was his future?
When I was younger, I always played sports like basketball, soccer and hockey and thought maybe I would want to be a professional athlete one day. I always had a passion for gaming, I just never thought of being a pro gamer until I started playing Fortnite. I saw one of my good friends who plays sports with me do it, and put my mind to what I wanted. I did not want to attend post-secondary at all so during all of my senior year, I was a little deficient on sleep from playing games.
At the moment, you’re one of the few players in the competitive scene who’ve spent a significant amount of time on multiple teams. What’s the biggest difference you’ve felt between being on NRG and being on TSM?
When I was on NRG, I don't think I was the improving at the highest rate, maybe because I didn’t feel as comfortable being signed to an org at the time. I really think liftoff for my career started in the couple tournaments I played in after being released from NRG then joining TSM. I really do enjoy the environment and caringness TSM has brought to me. TSM has been life changing, and I would never take being apart of this amazing org for granted.
You’ve most recently appeared in TSM’s WSOE video, in which it showed you visiting the gaming house and attending the event. What was it like meeting and being with all your teammates in person?
Definitely better communication than being on a PC in a call all day. It felt good experiencing a LAN together, going in as a team(s). I’ve been to the house once before, where I did meet Myth, Dae, and Hamz but this time ZexRow also came with me to the house. It was awesome being in competitive, work-hungry space right before a tournament; the mindset going in was something I would like to experience again.
When you’re playing in a tournament, could you try to describe the difference (if any) in how you feel in terms of mentality when the storm circles get really small and people start dropping left and right?
Something I’ve developed and loved to get better at after my first 2 tournaments was my ability to stay calm through all of the heat. It’s definitely still more intense than practice/scrims but if you’re confident and cool until the end, the results come out better.
As a side note - is it particularly difficult to track everything going on in those points of the game?
It is very cluttered, but through the debris, you have to focus on the right things, and prioritize accordingly.
Do you actually process all this incoming information, or do you generally tune out noise and focus on specific things?
For me, it comes in waves.
- Wave 1 is enemies, nearby enemies and anybody at a distance that may you in their sights.
- Wave 2 is no tunnel visioning.
- Wave 3 is tied between what you have to work with and the circle moving in.
- Wave 4 is being minimalist but safe.
Generally over time, I’ve gotten better at not tunnelling, moving as fast as possible, making sure I know my mats, knowing my health etc. Pretty much everything that tells you your limits in the moment of the game.
Epic has made a lot of unpopular decisions in the past month regarding patch timings with tournaments, such as the addition of the Infinity Blade the morning before the NA Winter Royale and the addition of Boom Boxes before WSOE. As someone who’s been affected by these changes personality, could you give us some insight as to what it feels like when you’re put in these scenarios?
At that point, it’s not your choice to rebel or not play. You HAVE to adapt. For example, Season 7 was introduced one week before Winter Royale. At this time, I was travelling to the TSM house and I played the patch two days after everyone was getting used to it. After realizing the sword was introduced, I had to spend as much time as possible, learning the sword, learning planes, ziplines etc. It’s a gutting feeling, not knowing what the sword does before you’re about to play in a $500,000 tournament and I wish I never experience that again.
It’s definitely not the best for competitive integrity or the best for the future of the game but Epic Games has had made statements recently, explaining how things will work in the future and things do look a little better.
What are your biggest issues with the Fortnite competitive scene at the moment?
I don’t have as many issues as some of my peers but some key things I think Epic should try to do better are:
- Communicate more and more often to the competitive and casual community. It does seem like it’s starting to happen, but considering this is just the beginning of Fortnite Competitive, a lot more effort is needed.
- Definitely stop forcing west coast players to play on 100ms or higher in competitions. I have played in 4 online tournaments from home with 110ms which is NOT playable (Still placed in the money twice). I have played 1 online tournament from the TSM House with about 80ms which was a lot better for me but still very unfair compared to playing against 1-20ms competitors.
- The last thing is just for super casual and entertainment based items to be reviewed before being included in competitive lobbies.
Is there anything in particular you would really like to see in upcoming tournaments?
The patch of the OPEN Winter Royale qualifiers and the experience it brought was amazing. If something like that happened again, with the tournament being on the same Season and Patch, it would be amazing. The qualifiers were filled with grit and consistency which is something a BR/this game needs. And maybe a ranked mode! :D
As with all our interviews, we like to leave the last section for whoever we’re interviewing to make some final remarks or give shoutouts to the fans. Is there anything you’d like to include?
I am incredibly grateful that TSM has brought me on the journey and I hope to make a lot of memories in the future. Thank you for supporting me and Leena for being the GOAT.
That’s it for our interview with TSM Kaysid! We hope you found his answers as insightful into the competitive scene as we did. If you’re interested in more from him, follow him on the following social media channels: