PEACE opened their participation in the 2021 League of Legends World Championship with a losing effort by falling to China’s fourth-seed LNG Esports in a sub-25 minute affair. Despite PEACE’s best effort, which was spearheaded by mid-laner James “Tally” Shute on Galio, they closed their opening day with a 0-1 record and must now look ahead to facing the remainder of their group which includes Hanwha Life Esports, RED Canids, and Infinity Esports. Following their opening defeat in Worlds 2021, PEACE Tally spoke with the media for a scrum interview to discuss his thoughts on the recent match, his career for the past year, working with top laner Vizicsacsi during Worlds, and much more.
Making Worlds 2021, current meta, and past year
Commiserations on the loss to LNG. We’d like to know your thoughts about the current meta for Worlds. A lot of teams are saying the new changes are weird, so as a mid-laner, what do you think?
Tally: I would say I’m really excited about how the Worlds 2021 meta is going because it’s very flexible and chaotic. I think teams don’t have to conform to a certain playstyle and they can shine on whatever they think is good. I think you’ll see a lot of teams play what they believe is good and most comfortable on instead of going for a couple of champions that would just dominate the meta.
After a pretty wild season, one that saw you bounce from Worlds last year over to North America and then back to OCE before this year’s edition of the competition, what has your experience been like? How would you describe your last 365 days in-between your Worlds appearances?
PEACE Tally: I would say it’s definitely one of a kind. I can’t really think of another player who’s gone from Worlds to academy and back to the region they started in and not go to Worlds again. I’m just really happy that when I came back to OCE, I was able to have a shot at Worlds because I wouldn’t be playing here if I didn’t think it was achievable. Just going international is my dream as a player and I’m really happy that I’m constantly given the opportunity to prove myself, even though I can come in during the middle of a split and do whatever I want. I’m just glad I was given another shot again.
Coming into this competition, you guys experienced a major roadblock as your regular top laner Apii couldn’t travel to Iceland with the team so Vizicsacsi was brought in as his replacement. What has it been like working with him and what were some of the challenges you experienced with him so far?
PEACE Tally: I would say the challenges we’ve faced so far is that Csacsi and Apii have different playstyles. Apii was a carry player and my pool was very like–I would enhance him as a player and make him shine. Swapping over to Csacsi is definitely a change. I had to play a lot more carries because he tends to play more tanks as a supportive player. But getting to work with him is–I’m learning a lot because he’s very experienced and a talented player. He teaches us stuff every day and I’m really glad he was an option for us.
Competing in Worlds 2021 Play-In Stage
This group looks to be difficult for minor region teams to get out of since you have to face the fourth seed of China and Korea. In Brazil, we see that Red Canid’s key matches for the Play-In stage are against Infinity and PEACE. How do you guys see this situation? Do you guys have a similar view?
PEACE Tally: I would say that the wild card regions in this group are definitely the key matches. I think LNG and HLE are definitely the top dogs of the group, but I was really glad to be placed in this group personally because I think–even though it’s really hard to beat them, I was glad the challenge was presented because if we can’t prove ourselves, that will be something I’ll always remember. With the way the bracket works, if we perform as expected, then we get to face the other group in a best-of-five, which is something we’re comfortable in doing. I think the way the bracket works is very helpful to us.
I’d like to ask about your general experience in Worlds 2021 with the changes to the tournament structure and also with the community support for the OCE region we’ve seen this year from MSI and this event. How are you feeling about these changes for this event?
PEACE Tally: I think the support is definitely insane. I think that most of the other regions felt bad for us because they saw that our region was abolished and it didn’t exist anymore, but the fact that we were able to do so well at MSI made everyone cheer for us as the underdog, pretty much. Compared to last year, the support I have right now is crazy. Everyone is so nice and supportive and they just want to see us succeed. Just seeing an underdog do well is always really cool. I’m happy to be able to travel to a place like Iceland, which is somewhere I never thought I’d go in my life, and play the game I love.
Which Worlds 2021 Opponent PEACE Tally Would Like to Face
There’s something else beyond you jumping from Worlds to academy and then back to Worlds such as your reunion with Babip. You’ve both had quite a similar ride in the last year and I’m curious how you’ve been together with him in both on and off the Rift.
PEACE Tally: When I found out the news that I was getting benched from Academy, I was extremely upset. But to be honest, I found out straight away as well that the same thing happened to Babip and it actually made me happy because I knew that–what I wanted to do straight away is return to OCE and have a shot at Worlds. I think the two of us have really bonded over the fact that we went from the bottom of the barrel to representing our region at Worlds and I’m happy I was able to do it with him.
You mentioned having the privilege to come to Iceland and being able to compete with various players. Could you tell us, maybe from scrims, who is the player you’ve enjoyed facing the most and who are you looking forward to facing in Worlds?
PEACE Tally: I would base my experience on last year’s Worlds. I really enjoyed laning against Nomanz. I think he’s an extremely underrated player. He’s much better than the average wild card mid. A player I’ve always watched is Chovy. I said this many times. I think Chovy is–he plays real League of Legends and everyone needs to catch up to what he’s doing if you want to improve in the game.