Mania-Actu want to be a website where lives Trackmania and Shootmania. Many new readers didn"t know TM-Actu and TM community so it's time to present to them the most famous player : frostBeule. You go to be able to discover him in a long interview where we will speak of many subject like his victories, his future in esport, Shootmania ... etc etc.
Mania-Actu : Hello Frostbeule and welcome on Mania-Actu. Firstly, can you appear for our readers who do not still know you?
Hi, my name is Kalle Videkull, and I also go by the nickname frostBeule. I'm a 2 times world champion (ESWC and WCG) in Trackmania Nations Forever, and I also play a bit of TM2 on the side. I'm Swedish and I like long walks on the beach.
Can you speak to us about things which tempted you to play Trackmania?
Well I discovered TMN when I as usual was visiting a internet forum that I frequently attend. There was a topic there about a new free-to-play racing game. Since I was already a big racing game fan, and more leaned towards the unrealistic types of racing games such as Mario Kart and F-Zero, this game seemed pretty good to me as it also seemed to share that unrealisic touch in games that I liked. So that tempted me into giving it a go and so I decided to download it.
First I played alot on the ladder and I had great fun doing so. Eventually I even reached 1st place on it. But once I had done that, my motivation was starting to decrease since I felt like I had ”beaten” the game. However, by chance, I then got introduced to the world of esports. One day, the Team captain of the newly established Team Sweden was driving on the same server as I was, and I guess he must have seen that I was pretty good at the game because he decided to recruit me to the team for the upcoming first edition of the Nations Cup (hosted by et-generation.com). That's when I discovered the second thing apart from the unrealism that I liked about the game and that tempted me to continue playing which was the competitive, or esports, side of the game. So I would say that the unrealism was what got me into playing the game for starters, and then the competitive side of it was what kept me going (and still do).
It was in 2006 and you still play at TM. You are the best prizes list of TM players. Can you speak about this and tell us your secret ?!
Thanks, yeah it's crazy, but it's been over 6 years now since I started playing this game and over the years I've participated in alot of tournaments and had great success in them. In total I have 118 achievements (78 individual and 40 team achievements), and among those achievements I've finished 69 times 1st which is something I'm pretty proud of. I'm not sure if there is a secret to how, but I guess you need a certain hunger to always do well and never feel too satisfied and always wanting to improve. It also helps to be a bit stubborn I think, which I definitely is guilty of being. Other than that, practice alot!
After this, what can you expect about your future in esport?
My goal is just to keep being active in esports and continue being a competitor as long as I can and as long as I think it's fun doing so. Also I think I don't really feel like it must be through Trackmania only. If there's a new esports racing game in my taste in the future then there's a decent possibility I would try it out since I seem to have a natural talent for these type of games. I also think it would be good with some competition for Nadeo, since I sadly feel like Trackmania is losing ground in the esports world because of various reasons and decisions that has been taken recently.
To restore some Nation's strength, what could be the solution ? A new upgrade like we saw with Trackmania Nations Forever ?
Yes I definitely think that's what needs to happen if Trackmania wants to have a bright future in esports. I personally don't see TMNF as a very completed game. I could even go so far to say that it still got so much potential and so much improvements that can be made to it that it's almost like it's still in a beta-phase.
I think when Nadeo made Nations, they made a great foundation for an esports racing game. But in my opinion it's still just a foundation. They can still continue building the actual contruction, and that's what I hope they will do one day. It would make sense for an esport, and i think it would make sense economically too considering how popular TMN was and still is.
Of course, then people might say ”but TMN is a free game, how do you make money of it?”. Well, if you didn't know, people could buy an upgraded version of the game, and also it had advertisement (before freezone) which I assume did decently enough economically for Nadeo. I think those kind of things should stay and can be improved alot. I also really think that free-to-play games got a great future ahead of itself, especially in esports. Just look at League of Legends as a perfect exemple how it can be done. I think a similiar model could be applied to TMN which I think would fit well to the game.
I have a dream : look an event with all best TMNF players like Bergie, Carl, Frostbeule, Karjen, Hakki Junior ... But how with your conflict with ESWC and disappearance of TMNF in WCG ?!
Yeah I would also like to see that kind of tournament, with all the top players of the game present. I don't think it necessarily have to happen in a ESWC or WCG... Gamers Assembly that happened pretty recently had 3 of those guys present, and it can still happen elsewhere I'm sure. But to have a greater chance of seeing it happen in the future then as I already mentioned, there needs to be a continuation of TMN. Or in other words, a continuation of the esports legacy that these names you have written represent.
With Zotac, we saw that you have a great level on TM2. What do you think about this game?
It's not that I don't think it's a decent game. I like it to some extent and it got some good qualities to it. But more importantly what I don't like about it is that the game has been heavily promoted by Nadeo and Ubisoft as a sequel to TMN in esports when in my opinion it is not a sequel to TMN at all, and it is not as suited for esports as TMN is. I think this has only caused trouble and as a result instead of taking the next step forward as an esport, which I think should and could only happen through a continuation of TMN, we're instead taking a step backwards which I think is unfortunate. If Trackmania wants to survive in the esports world in the future, I really think that continuation needs to happen pretty soon before it's too late.
What is your answer against people who said : "He play at TM2 for money, that's all" ?
I would say that that's partially true. I play it for money, but I also play it for my team and my sponsors, and I play it because I'm good at it. I don't see what's wrong with that.
But there isn't many people online on TM2 (around 150 ... even if around 100.000 accounts), what is its problem(s) ? Is it the same thing for all racing games?
I think atleast one reason why not many people play it is because it was in fact promoted as a sequel to TMN. Most people that play Trackmania play TMN so that's (still) Nadeo's biggest audience, but when fans of TMN bought the game and then realized that it was not in fact a sequel it was a disapointment for them and I think most of those people went back to TMN again. Also I think even for the TMU fans the game might not be as enjoyable since it's only one environment instead of multiple ones and it also is a drifting environment which none of the TMU environments are, so I think many of those maybe also went back to TMU. However, Nadeo has said that for them the game is a success, and I guess it is if only sold copies is what you care about. So I think because the game isn't a sequel to TMN, and not really a sequel to TMU either, that probably explains to some extent why so few people are playing it right now. I think for example if they had instead made a proper sequel to TMN (regardless of it being free-to-play or not), it would have been a lot more people playing it simply because usually people want more of the same in a game and not something too new and different.
As you know, Nadeo realized ShootMania, a new fps. Did you try it ? What is your opinion ? Is it possible that SM's success help TM2 and TMNF in future ?
I actually got an alpha-key just recently because I was at Gamers Assembly. I haven't tried it out yet though, but I don't really have much to say about the game. I'm not much of an fps-fan so my opinions are limited I'm afraid. As for it helping TM2 or TMNF, I don't really see how that can work to be honest. If anything, I think it is more likely that the opposite might happen if SM turns out to be a success, because Nadeo and Ubisoft might put all their effort in just that game, and then there's no time left for Trackmania. But we will see what will happen I guess.
Let me change subject to talk about our new website : Mania-Actu.com. What do you think about its design, its new goals ... etc etc ?
I like the new design of the site and all its new features and I especially like it that there's a dedicated English version of it. But the thing that I personally would've liked to see would be different independent sites for the different games. I don't really see the benefits (atleast in esports) of having just 1 site for all these games that in my opinion don't really share that much except all being made by Nadeo. I think having a TM-Actu, a SM-Actu and a QM-Actu would've made more sense to me in an esports point of view. However, I'm still glad that there's atleast 1 site out there that writes English news about Trackmania, so I'm grateful for that.
You are now a member of Mania-Actu as writter. What are your motivations and what do you expect of this?
Yes that's true, I was offered to write English news about TMN and I figure I could do that once in a while since I've done it before at other sites and it's not really that hard for me. But I'm still very much remaining as a player though, so this is just something that I will be doing on the side of being a competitor.
Thanks a lot for this interview. I give you the last words.
Thanks for having me. I would like to give shout-outs to my team, Team Acer and its sponsors Addidas, Bigfoot Networks, 4netplayers, Nvidia and Roccat. Also if you want you can check out my facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/fBcentral or follow me on twitch.tv where I frequently stream some Trackmania aswell as other games such as F-Zero: http://www.twitch.tv/frostBeule. All is well.
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