Translation of's interview with Anton "Cooller" Singov, conducted before Moscow Championship 2017's semi-final on September 23, 2017.

World's best Quake player shared his impressions about the game and offered some ideas about improving tournament process and gameplay. Anton "COOLLERZ" Singov - one of the most decorated and strongest Quake players in the world. In recently released Quake Champions Singov has already won several tournaments and made it to Top 3 in recent QuakeCon. We took an interview with Anton during "Moscow Championship" where he took 1st place.

Hello Anton! Tell me, what did you do this morning before attending the tournament (interview was recorded right before the start of Moscow Championship semifinal on the Cyberspace sport stage)

Cooller: Nothing special - I slept, I ate, I shaved. Event started at 15:00-16:00 (MSK) but I arrived at 14:00.

How do you rate this tournament difficulty, for you specifically?

Cooller: It wasn't hard. I got really lucky with the brackets - most difficult opponents were placed in the lower bracket so I didn't have any difficult matches.

You have been invited to DreamHack Winter 2017. What do you expect from this tournament, what are your goals?

Cooller: Quake is a meta game. And it will probably get an update before the tournament that will drastically change it. I hope that I will have enough time to adapt to the new meta. Right now we don't know about future changes, so it's hard to say which heroes I will pick and what will I do.


Did your champions pick change since QuakeCon?

Cooller: Yes, it did. I added Anarki to my pick. Before that I tried playing either Galena or Ranger, can't remember. Anarki, in my opinion, is more efficient for my play style. But he was a new hero for me so I had to train. I can't say I have fully mastered him yet, but I am doing very good and I hope I can nail it in the end.

When you first launched Quake Champions, what were your impressions?

Cooller: The core [of the game] is still the same, I am used to it and it was easy for me to adapt. However, there were many new things that required analysis and time investment to build my own game.

Have these changes made the game better or worse?

Cooller: Better. They made it different and therefore raised people's interest. The game is more attractive, multi-sided and unpredictable at certain moments. Because of that, it is now more interesting for spectators.

What would you add in Quake Champions if you had the opportunity?

Cooller: Firstly, I think there should be more heroes. Secondly, I'd like to offer a ban system to developers, like in Dota 2. So that before hero picks players could cross off the heroes they're uncomfortable with or ban opponent's strongest characters. Also, they should add more new maps. So far there is only 4, at least in duel.

During QuakeCon translation I saw you were actively articulating and are very emotional in general.

Cooller: Everyone has emotions. Some people express them openly, some suppress or try to hide them. I try to keep myself in check, but sometimes something breaks through, however that is not a bad thing - it is quite natural for many players, especially professionals.

Are you looking forward to rematch with clawz?

Cooller: No. That was a working moment for me. If I have to face him again, I will be simply playing just another match. After my defeat I worked hard to study that game and made some conclusions.

Like what, for example?

Cooller: Firstly, I didn't research him quite well before the game. He has a very specific, aggressive play style. You have to have certain things prepared against that style and I simply didn't adapt to it. Now I know what I should do to gain an advantage.


Who is your main rival now?

Cooller: There were 2 of them - cYpheR and rapha. Today they are both defeated, let's just say that. However I have a bone against Av3k who defeated me at QuakeCon Regionals. We need to play a rematch to see who is stronger.

In MediaMarkt interview you said that even you're a pensioner, your pension is 20x times more than average. How are the conditions in Natus Vincere compared to best offers from Euro teams?

Cooller: When I signed a contract with Na'Vi I had offers from other orgs. Na'Vi are as good as them, if not better.

How do you maintain your physical shape?

Cooller: Right now it's very bad. I got thinner during last years and that's because I had reasons to stop doing any sports. However, I hope to change that in the near future.

How important is it for a cyber athlete to maintain the physical shape, in your opinion?

Cooller: That is the topic I am researching right now. So far I can not conclude whether it's important or not. Everything depends on the workload. So if you're actively doing sports - it does more harm than good. Let's just say that small physical training can be positive for both health and skill.

Cypher always said that he sacrifices his whole time and life, including personal, to Quake. How do you manage your family life, fatherhood and work? How much time do you spend with your son?

Cooller: Because I have an opportunity to practice at home, I have a lot of opportunity to be with my son and take part in his life, if necessary. In my opinion, I dedicate as much time to it as required. I have no problems with this.

If your son wants to follow your path, would you allow him to participate in esports?

Cooller: In my opinion, everyone has the right of choice in his life. So if he decides to do that, and it will be interesting for him - I won't oppose that, most likely. Because a man should do what he likes. This is what I have learned from my personal experience.

Some cyber athletes do not allow their wives and girlfriends to the tournaments because it distracts them. Some do, however, because it helps. Did you ever take your wife to any tournaments?

Cooller: No, I didn't. Because she is either busy with the child or herself. And I also think that it's more distracting than helping.

Yet another quote from cYpheR: "my limit is 30 years". Do you have yours?

Cooller: No. I only set short-term goals for myself and try to live by that principle. That means you set plans for a year or two ahead and try to accomplish them. Same in Quake - you can never be certain that, for example, in 5 years this discipline will still be actual and offer you enough possibilities for self-realization. So that you can have a proper feedback.

Some people say that the deciding factor in cybersport is dedication, some say it's talent. What do you think?

Cooller: Both. Definitely, without natural features given by nature or genes you can't self-realize in this area, I personally learned that. There are many people that dedicate themselves to cybersport for days but get no results. There are many examples when a person doesn't invest too much time but has better results.

If you could make a dream team for Sacrifice, who would you invite?

Cooller: Latrommi, noctis, clawz.

Today's best Quake Champions Players?

Cooller: RAISY, cYpheR and k1llsen.

What's the craziest thing you've spent your prize money on?

Cooller: A trip to the sea. It was very expensive and at that time it cost me 15,000 USD.

Best match of your career?

Cooller: Hmm (thoughtful). That wasn't Quake, it was Overwatch. DreamHack Winter 2016, one year ago. I was in the team Misfits and we won the final vs FNATIC. Back then emotions overwhelmed me, that was unforgettable. A huge event in my career. Before that I wasn't winning anything for quite some time.

If you had an opportunity to come back to Overwatch, would you take it?

Cooller: If the conditions are proper - why not.

Three tips you can give to new cyberathletes?

Cooller: Learn the market tendencies. Always stay in the top, so that you can receive the most profitable offer. Only sign a contract with known orgs that you trust.

September 26, 2017