Just sitting around waiting for a large program to install on my computer and I felt the urge to write a quick blog about all the craziness that's going on in my life right now. Some good and some less than good.
On Sunday I fly to Korea to start casting the OSL with Moletrap! (That's good!) I can't wait to get out there and see all my friends again. Casting the OSL is an enormous stress for me. Although I can never claim to be one of the BW old-guard, I do realize what a big deal it is to have an English broadcast for this tournament and how incredible the history behind the years and years of OSLs is. To try to do a tournament like this justice puts me under more pressure than I've ever felt before as a commentator. It's keeping me up at night, but in the end it's motivating me more than anything else ever has in the past, which I hope will result in a good cast for you guys. I want to tell the story of these great players in a way that brings in new fans and keeps the existing ones engaged. I assure you that I will. Noah (Moletrap) and I have been talking a lot already about ways to give our cast more structure and polish than anything we've done in the past as a pair of individually. I'm personally never insulted by critics. I just take it as a challenge to win someone new over. OSL and Proleague are going to be great. The players are already going to give us great games. I'm going to give you great commentary to go with it. I promise.
Another aspect of getting back to Korea that I'm looking forward to is the opportunity to play much more. There was a time last year where I was playing 20+ games per day on the KR ladder and really improving. I hate being bad at anything and I'll just say strait up that my goal is to get good enough to take an occasional game off of legit pro-gamers. If I get to that point I'll let you know. If not... I'll probably try to not mention it and delete this blog... (kidding) One bad thing is that I could be farther along than I am. Frankly I've had a really hard time being ambitious with my playing because of the stress in dealing with my divorce this last 10 months or so. I don't like to talk much about my personal life because I don't think it's important, but since I'm randomly writing this I suppose I will a bit at least. The original plan was my wife would fly out to join me about a month after I started my second tour at the GSL. I think it was around September. Basically "see you soon!" turned into "I don't love you anymore and I'm leaving you" pretty suddenly. Turns out there were some things I wasn't aware of. That's what largely lead me to leave the GSL and return to the US in December. I took my vows seriously and honestly at that point was ready to give up esports and whatever else I needed to in order to fix things. Luckily for me IPL was looking for a caster at the time and I could continue in esports while I tried to sort things out on the personal side of things. In the end it takes two to make a marriage work and I had to accept that it was time to move on. I tried to not let it affect my casting, but I feel like it did a little bit. Kevin Knocke and David Ting are absolutely some of the most awesome people I've had the please of knowing for dealing with my somewhat less-stable personality during the last 8 months. I've always been a pretty laid back, calm person and it really shook me to lose that aspect of myself for a while. On the positive side, I feel a lot better now than I have since last year when everything went wrong for me personally. Things are looking up and I can really dedicate myself completely to Starcraft 2 and esports now. I'm excited!
During all this I felt Korea calling. I missed living there from the moment I landed back in the US. It wasn't just the esports. I missed the country itself. I really do love it there and when I got the offer to return to cast the OSL I couldn't imagine saying no. IPL has been a great experience, but ultimately I decided to put where I wanted to live and work before anything else. They took great care of me while I was there though and anyone lucky enough to land a job at IPL has a lot to look forward to. It was great to see an organization grow and add on more and more jobs in teams for different games. Really encouraging for esports as a whole, not just SC2.
Switching topics. This KESPA thing from yesterday really blindsided me. We all want to see their players in the GSL and I still hope that happens sooner rather than later. I don't expect that I'll have any influence in the matter, but I'll see what I can do/find out. Organisations working together has been one of my biggest focuses since I started working in esports professionally and I want to see it happen in Korea as much as I do in the rest of the world. Speaking generally and not about this current issue; it's silly for organisations to try to hurt and eliminate each other while they try to grab as big of a chunk of the esports pie as they can. Let's concentrate on growing the pie first.
In other news I bought a sweet HD video camera. (a GoPro HD Hero2 specifically) My inner skateboarder loves the fisheye lens settings and I can't wait to start shooting some behind-the-scenes stuff at the OSL studio for you guys. I've also always been a big fan of travel documentaries and I hope I can start making some content like that too. Might not be esports related. Just "adventures in exotic foreign lands" focused. I'm curious how much this scene would be in something like that.
My shows (Cartographer, Build Order Breakdown, HotS customs) will return! Not sure where or when, but they will. I'll have more info later.
I think that pretty much does it. I'm surprised I wrote this much, but thanks if you made it this far!
TLDR: I like Korea. OSL will be good. Sometimes you go through terrible stuff in life, but it's temporary so get over it!
See you guys on the other side! (of the ocean)