Interview with T1 player Joseph "ban" Seungmin
Yoann: Hello, everyone. Today I'm with Ban from T1, we'll get to know more about his story and his future with T1. Would you like to introduce yourself?
Ban: Yeah okay. My name is Ban from T1. I played for Knights and Luminosity before. Currently, I am a duelist main, but I don't know what my roles are gonna be next year.
Yoann: All right. When and how did you get into eSports?
Ban: So I went to the Marines after high school. I also wrestled during high school. And the way I got into eSports was after the Marines. I got medically discharged. I was super sad, honestly, and as I got into gaming, I was like, “I have nothing to do for a couple of months. I'm just gonna rest for a bit.” Because I was physically super tired and hurt. So I just started playing games like Valorant, all my friends were playing.
I got placed in Plat at first. I have that competitive drive from wrestling and also the Marines. And I just started playing maybe 8 to 10 hours a day, and once I hit radiant, I was like, okay, I'm just going to compete for fun cuz my friends wanted me to compete.
I started out in tier 3 and just slowly climbed up, trying to build confidence in myself. I just kept grinding, and here we are.
Yoann: Yeah, that's good. Have you had any FPSs experience before?
Ban: No, I did play computer games before. But it's nothing serious. I was working out most of the time for wrestling.
I really didn't have time, I'd just played games with my friends. I did play Overwatch, but only for 30 minutes, An hour a day.
Yoann: Ok, that's interesting. You joined T1 in August this year. Did anything major change for you in terms of new experiences, meeting new people…
Ban: Yeah, for sure. I played with the other iteration of the roster, with Steel and Thwifo, and I love those two players. Like they were good teammates, but just unlucky that we can't continue playing because of the franchising in APAC (T1 is now playing in Korea). But it was really good meeting those two players. And even then, just playing with Xeta and Munchkin. I just could tell that we have that chemistry.
Yoann: All right. How important is it to have a good relationship with your teammates inside and outside Valorant, in your opinion?
Ban: I value that a lot because, in my opinion, if your teammates do not trust you outside the game, I don't think it could be a championship-winning team.
Yoann: So, how did you prepare to play against opponents?
Ban: When I first hit Radiant, I was just like running it down, like just trusting my aim. But I actually improved last year, I had that insane VCT run where I was actually just VOD reviewing every single day.
Yoann: Yeah, ranked and pro play are very different, but you can learn from it and actually improve.
Ban: Exactly, yeah. I feel like ranked is the way to show your mechanical skills. And you can carry your top 0.1% mechanical skills in pro play.
Yoann: What was your routine one hour before matches?
Ban: Before matches, I would just be death-matching 30 minutes with music on. And then the other 30 minutes, when we're about to start the match, I just go for a quick walk or a jog.
Yoann: That’s interesting! How do you feel about the current Valorant meta with Chamber and Fade? If you could, what would you change?
Ban: I personally really liked it when there was a double duelist meta. I think that was the most fun to watch.
But in general, I don't like Chamber.
So I hope Chamber gets nerfed more, I feel like Cypher will come into play soon.
Yoann: I really hope you're right, being a Cypher main myself, haha.
Ban: Yeah, he will definitely get a buff.
Yoann: What are your thoughts about the Valorant franchising program?
Ban: I think the franchising program is actually really good, especially with the Ascension League. But at the end of the day, it's actually just business.
Yoann: So yeah, T1 is now an APAC team, a Korean team. So what will it change for you as a player?
Ban: Nothing much, because I actually do speak fluent Korean, I communicate with all my teammates in Korean if I have to, and I don't think it's like a really big deal for me.
Yoann: All right. Were you expecting it to happen?
Ban: It's always a possibility, we all knew that they were going to apply both in APAC and NA, and there was always a chance we might get a Korean slot.
Yoann: Okay. So how do you feel about Pearl, in general?
Ban: I think Pearl is actually really good, but we haven't seen a lot of games in pro just yet, so I feel like we just need more time to see what kind of ideas other teams have.
Yoann: Do you prefer playing on attack or on defense?
Ban: I like both because when I play duelist, I'm trying to get the first pick most of the time. So I don't mind either side.
Yoann: Which team would you like to play against in the near future?
Ban: As people know, DRX is really good in the APAC region, and I would love to play against them for sure.
Yoann: Yeah, it would be a great match! Who were you supporting during Champions?
Ban: I was supporting DRX and also Optic because I've always just thought that Optic was very solid in general. They're the most consistent team throughout the year, for sure.
Yoann: What are your short, and long-term ambitions with your team?
Ban: Short term is obviously trying to win the Brazil kickoff.
I'm not really worried about the short-term ambitions because I just want to improve as a team long term, just like how we did on Knights. As long as everyone puts in the same effort. We will improve together pretty fast.
Yoann: Okay, that’s great! Would you like to add something to the interview?
Ban: I just want to say that I know for a fact like everyone on this team works hard. They want to be a championship-winning team. We have the managers and the staff members to support it.
And we'll get there!
Yoann: Thank you for your time, and yeah, best of luck for the future!
Ban: Thank you, I appreciate it!