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Here’s our interview with team HYPED UP that won the North American finals on June 17 in the first Guns of Boom ESL Tournament. Get a quick glimpse into the team's life and history, and find out what separates good teams from the best ones.

Question (Holymoley): Hi, bros! How are you today? Are you still celebrating, or training hard again to get another prize?

Answer (Stark): Back to training. We have a set schedule for every day that we stick to. We are all over the country, so to make sure we can play together it’s best to have a schedule.

Q: Tell us something about yourselves: Who are you, where are you from, how have you met each other?

A: I am Stark, originally from SicK Wit It clan. User and Jon Snow are also from SicK - this team was the second one during this Spring esports season (five Gold medals and two Silver medals). Venom and Ariel are from Onyx. Regarding our real life locations, we are all in different cities - for example, Venom is from San Francisco, California. We are all the leaders of HYPED UP - Venom, Stark, Ariel, JennFTW(:v). We’ve known each other for a very long time, and we’ve been in multiple clans together.

Q: What was your first impression when we announced the first ESL GO4 season?

A: When we first saw that the ESL was announced, we were all in two different clans. Once we established that we would merge clans to make a team that is dedicated to the ESL Season, we decided to make the strongest team possible. Clans that could be competitors at this event decided to join forces, taking the best players from Onyx and best players from SicK.

Q: What is your key to team spirit? How do you get an advantage against other teams in such a tournament?

A: Our team is different. We took 4-5 of the best players in the world, that all have varying playstyles, all that win the majority of their 1-on-1 battles, get multi-kills, killing sprees etc... and then worked on teamwork after. We’re friends. So it’s easy. We enjoy playing together (not only in the tournament). We hate losing more than we like winning. Our "chemistry" helps tremendously in making our victories and practice well worth it.

Q: Did you know your enemies, maybe you played together before the battle?

A: We knew everyone we have faced in ESL. Whether they are former clanmates, or people from the past. No unknown surprises so far. The clan :V has two hyped up members so yes, we play together all the time - with them and against them - and for the rest of the teams out there I’ve seen them here and there.

Q: Does anyone know about your passion for esports and support you in real life? Family, friends, or maybe a pet?

A: Our families and friends all support us in GoB. Without their support and understanding, we wouldn’t be able to put so much time into the game.

Q: If there were to be only one map and one weapon in Guns of Boom, what would you choose?

A: One map? We would all choose Paradise. One weapon...for Stark, it’s the Knife, for Venom it’s the Odin, for Ariel it’s Barracuda, for User it’s Barracuda, and Jon it’s Barracuda. We have the best snipers on planet Earth. I (Venom) would take Saloon map, not Paradise!

Q: Please give the one most useful piece of advice you have for beginners who want to join the esports hall of fame.

A: For all those watching and wanting to play at this level: it takes a certain amount of god-given skill; yes. Even more than that, it takes hard work and dedication. If you set out to be one of the best in the world... make the sacrifices and put in the time... you would surprise yourself with the outcome. For the people here that wanna have an esports career - keep practicing and don’t let anyone call you a noob, ‘cause one day they’ll be looking to you as an equal or even more.

Q: Are you ready to fight ‘til the end and join live tournaments later this year?

A: We are ready to continue our dominance all the way to LA, and show the world who are truly the best. I’m beyond ready to win it all. My clan has the best players and are the best group of people to play GoB with!

Sounds great, thank you. Good luck and see you next time!

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