I managed to come into contact with KT's Violet last week! We talked for a bit, and I told him all about Team Liquid and the foreign fans. He was really impressed with our knowledge and dedication in following the proscene. After some discussion he agreed to an interview! As you can see, he's a really nice guy After reading this interview I hope you will become a fan of Violet, if you hadn't been one already. Be sure to check out the Woo Jung Ho International FanCafe initiative right here on TL!
This is the first in a series of great interviews to come, so be on the lookout for more interviews in the future!
Without further ado, here is Team Liquid's exclusive interview with Violet conducted via email:
Hi, this is LosingID8 from Team Liquid ^^
A Team Liquid interview is different from others. If you look at other community sites, their answers are standard and boring, so please write nice, long answers! ^^
Ok, here we go!
1. Please introduce yourself
Hello, my name is Woo Jung Ho and I am a 22 year old (T/N: 22 in Korean age, he is 20) progamer!
2. What did you want to be before you became a progamer?
I wanted to be one of those people who sing at a bar. It has a good atmosphere ^^ I thought that you received wages doing that, but then I found out that it’s something that people do for free to get more exposure ^^;; Another thing I wanted to be was a programmer.
3. Tell us how you became a progamer in terms of timeline & how you entered KT. Did you go through courage or were you drafted?
Yes, I passed Courage and became a semi-progamer. Via the 2007 2nd half draft I became a progamer. I have been in KT since May of 2007.
4. As a StarCraft player before you became a pro, who were your idols?
Reach, who is currently active in Airforce ACE.
5. Tell us how you became a progamer in terms of the evolution of your gameplay. What were the key realizations or improvements through practice that allowed you to reach the level necessary to join a pro team?
When I started playing I didn’t have the intent to be a progamer. It was just a hobby, but fortunately I became a semi-pro, and then I finally ended up being a progamer, which I had long admired ^^ I am the type of person who gets easily excited, so when my units die or when I lose a game I get very angry. When I first started playing it wasn’t like this, but after I became a progamer it has become more severe.. TT I haven’t been able to recover this. I am trying my best to recover. From the beginning until now I think that my skill is too inadequate~!!! TT
6. Describe your play style. Do you focus on your own strengths as Bisu does, or on the map and your opponent's weaknesses?
Although it changes depending on the situation, I am the type of player who focuses on creating havoc and a lot of small-scale battles. I am also confident in my macro ^^ I play to my strengths, and depending on the characteristics of the map I also show strategic play. I also play to the opponent’s weaknesses and I like using mindgames. I think that all progamers are similar with regard to this aspect.
7. Your level has increased dramatically in 2009, with a total record of 16-4. What caused your rapid improvement & what are your current goals?
I’m very flattered that you would say that those are very good results. I still feel as though I am too, too inadequate.. ^^;; I actually had planned for 2009 to be my last year as a progamer, so I wanted to try my hardest so that I would have no regrets. I thought that if results showed promise I would continue. Since my results have shown some promise I will continue to try harder in the future ^^ My current goal is to help my team get to the post-season of Proleague and to pass the offline preliminaries of the individual leagues.
8. You've become KT's first-line Protoss. Have your responsibilities within the team changed, or are you focused only on winning matches?
None of the hyungs (T/N: what a male calls an older male) that used to take care of me are around, and now there are a lot of players that have come after me, so I definitely feel a large responsibility. However it doesn’t feel burdensome at all. I feel that I need to be a role model for them so that they can grow up to become proper progamers, so I try not to show any bad sides of me.
9. A lot of fans say that in order to succeed in ProLeague playoffs, KT needs a powerful Protoss. Many of those fans think you are the Protoss the team needed to become more powerful. What do you think of that?
Although I don’t think I am good enough right now, I am glad that people view me like this. I really do want to become like that. Like Leta of Sparkyz, I want to be the reason why KT is considered a strong team. In order to become that I need to try harder though ^^
10. Are you aware of your nonkorean fanbase? You are popular with both hardcore fans & casual fans for your intelligent, exciting game style as a strong new Protoss. Non-korean fans watch you play live through internet streams every time you have a match. What would you like to say to your fans outside of Korea?
What is a casual fan? It’s a new word to me -.-;; This is the first time I was aware of the foreign fans, so I am very very happy. In the future I will do my best to repay everyone by showing even better and more fun games, so please keep cheering not only me on, but my other KT teammates and all the other Starcraft progamers ^^
11. Some nonkorean fans have chosen you as the Protoss most likely to lead the next generation of Protoss kings after the Taek-Bang era ends. As a fan it's much more exciting to try to look into the future, but as a player do you ever think about things like that?
I’m a bit embarrassed. Although I have heard this before, I am definitely not as good as Bisu or Stork, so I haven’t thought about the next generation of protosses. However I do think that Bisu and Stork have created an era of protoss, so in the future I want to create a new era of protoss dominance that is my own.
12. How did you prepare for your series against Luxury in the current GomTV league? How does training change when you're against a teammate? Did the series go as you expected?
Because I have a lot of Proleague appearances, honestly I was not able to practice for the GOMTV league. It seems as though Luxury-hyung was practicing… --++ When teammates play each other there are a lot of difficulties in practicing. A while ago when I played against Reach-hyung we didn’t practice with each other, either. In terms of the game, it went as I had predicted. Although I lost the 2nd game, I think it was because due to the lack of practice I didn’t make the correct decisions.
13. Please give your thoughts on your series against CJ's Effort in the current GomTV league. How close to your expectations were the matches?
Unfortunately as I write the responses to this interview, the results of the game have already come out .. TT I really wasn’t able to prepare enough. Because I had a proleague match I was only able to practice a little bit the day of the match. I didn’t have any confidence and I think I wasn't mentally prepared. My gameplay wasn’t very good so I am sorry to all the fans.
14. Who are you close to in the progaming world?
At the moment I am not close with any progamers from other teams. I plan to make friends in the future.
15. Do you have any frequent practice partners from other teams, or outside of the progaming teams?
Nope, I usually just practice with my teammates. I don’t really practice with any others.
16. Who's the best player in the world right now in terms of current gameplay?
Of course it’s "Bisu" Kim Taek Yong!
17. Ever heard of or played with IdrA or any other nonkorean players?
I recognize the ID, and I saw him playing in the GOMTV league. The other foreigner IDs I know are Draco, Nal_Testie? Is that right… and suncow.
18. What's your ICCup account?
It’s unfortunate, but I can’t tell you because it’s a secret ^^; My highest rank was A+ though.
I actually know of the site Team Liquid and I come and visit every once in a while. ^^ I wish you guys continued success! Team Liquid Fighting!
PS: I sent Violet an email with the link to this thread so feel free to leave a kind comment for him!
Special thanks to FakeSteve for creating the questions; lilsusie for helping with the translation; NeverGG for the photos; and SilverskY for making the banner!