Original article at http://www.thisisgame.com/board/view.php?category=13439&id=1486253
Think there's some stuff missing in the Chinese translation as compared to the Korean one, but the important stuff should all be here.
Satisfied with MLG Runner-Up
Flash recently came in as the runner-up in the recent MLG Winter Championship, having not been able to defeat Life in the finals. He felt it was still a very significant result for him to be able to get this placing despite his lack of practice in Heart of the Swarm.
Ever since he came back from MLG, Flash has been devoting himself to practising non-stop. Even though he hasn't recovered from the jet-lag, he still has to work extra hard to prepare for the tournaments like the SPL Show Match, SPL, GSL, etc. that he has ahead of him. Flash said, "I've just been practising a lot ever since I came back from MLG. I had to go overseas very shortly after Heart of the Swarm was released, and so wasn't able to practise too much. With so many tournaments coming up, I have to work hard."
Regarding his thoughts about attending the recent MLG, he had this to say. "I'm always full of energy every time I attend foreign tournaments. The schedule wasn't very tight for the tournament this time, and so I don't feel tired."
"I've always felt that the atmosphere is really good when playing in foreign tournaments. It really feels like you're playing in a tournament. The first time I attended MLG was for a show match, and I didn't really feel it then. When you're in the venue for the main tournament, you really don't have any time to be just standing around. The trip to America is also a test physically. Fortunately, there weren't that many games this time round. I only had to play about three to four games each day, and about ten games on the final day."
In order to ensure results in SPL, the KT team didn't do any practice in Heart of the Swarm until it was officially released. Before setting off for America, Flash only had two days to practise.
"To be honest, I only had about 2 days of practice in HOTS then, and so I didn't really have very high expectations. I predicted that I would be eliminated in the round of 8, but I played surprisingly well in the tournament, and actually made it to the finals. Even though I lost in the finals, it was already a very good result, taking into consideration the amount of practice I had. I am very satisfied."
"I felt that it should have been impossible to play so well with only 2 days of practice. Because I had so little practice, the head coach was telling me to get eliminated quickly so we could go sight-seeing, but in the end it turned out so well. The head coach and I both didn't expect to be able to achieve such results, and were really surprised."
"My match against Innovation was the one that left the deepest impression on me. He's a Terran that I personally feel and acknowledge to be very difficult to play against. He is really very good, and I've studied many of his games. Probably if Innovation had made it to the finals, he would have won the tournament. His TvZ is so much better than mine. I predicted that the match against Innovation would be really difficult, but maybe because our level is very similar, the match was really exciting."
Regarding the finals against Life, Flash had this to say. "Life is really an amazing player. Even though they call me his rival, I still have many things to improve on, and have to work even harder."
"He's really very good. Even though we haven't played against each other much, every time we play, I get the feeling that he has a very different style from other Zergs, and he is a really formidable opponent. He plays with a very aggressive style, and even in the late game, this style is still really flexible. There're many people talking about the idea of a new LeeSsang Rok, but I feel that I still have things to improve upon, and really have to work even harder. I am welcoming no matter who becomes my rival."
Heart of the Swarm - A New Opportunity
"It's a bit sad that the leagues are going to switch to using Heart of the Swarm. But I also clearly felt the limits of Terran in Wings of Liberty, and so even though we're going to switch over, I am not in despair. In my opinion, Terrans in the Wings of Liberty era might have been able to win championships when they got lucky, but to win multiple championships was really difficult. The limits of Terran in Wings of Liberty was really obvious. In Heart of the Swarm, there are more ways in which Terran can be played, and so I'm really looking forward to it."
"With my one week of practice, I really feel that Terran is better as compared to Wings of Liberty. But it's not just Terrans that have been buffed. The balance of the game still has to be looked at closely as time goes by. Nowadays, many people are saying that it's hard to play as Zerg, but Zerg was really too strong in the Wings of Liberty era. This imperfect balance is merely a temporary moment in the initial stages of Heart of the Swarm. But Zergs have no need to despair. Just like Terrans did in Wings of Liberty, imbalance between the races can be countered to a certain extent through practice. So let's all keep working hard. If things really don't work out, then all we can do is to wait for Blizzard to patch it (laughs)."
Flash in Starcraft 1 was a player known for his defense, but in Starcraft 2, he seems to be becoming a more offensive type of player. Regarding this, Flash said, "Terran in Starcraft 2 cannot turtle up anymore. Because the game has changed, my style also has to change accordingly."
"Starcraft 2 Terran is different as compared to Starcraft 1. A defensive style of playing doesn't work out. The style of the race has changed from defensive to offensive, and so if you don't play along the lines of being offensive you'll never win. That's why I also followed the trend and switched to an offensive style of playing. I wasn't familiar with it at first, and it was really tough. But after a year or so of practice, I have finally gotten the hang of it to a certain extent."
Flash really gained a lot from conquering this MLG.
"Playing in this MLG really helped me in all sorts of ways. I totally wasn't able to find the right feeling in my practice before the tournament, but through this tournament I now know how I should go about practising. My standard in Wings of Liberty was improving to some extent, and so having to switch to Heart of the Swarm immediately made me really disappointed. But after the tournament at MLG, I felt that my standard didn't decrease even though I was playing Heart of the Swarm, and that made me feel really proud. I'll have even more confidence in the upcoming tournaments."
"My current understanding of the game is still not good enough, and I have to increase the amount that I'm practising, and also to practise with emphases on the right places. Even though I barely had a few days of practice, Terran is different from the other races. The number of new units isn't that many, and the change in terms of play style isn't that great. We just have to be adequately prepared for the changes in the play styles of the other races."
"I want to slowly raise my level of performance, but I'm still a long way from it currently. From an objective standpoint, my current level is already sufficient to contend for championships. It's just that I'm still not satisfied with myself personally. I'll only be satisfied when I reach the peak position I was in in Starcraft 1."
Flash mentioned that even though the changes to Terran were very small in heart of the Swarm, it was extremely charming, and he believes that the game would become more popular very soon. He also said, "Hopefully the fans would be able to come to understand the charms of this game soon".
Target of Winning Championships in Heart of the Swarm
A player who has won plenty of championships in the Starcraft 1 era, Flash hasn't won a single championship after switching to Starcraft 2. This definitely hurt Flash, who had nicknames such as "The Ultimate Weapon" and "God". But he wasn't anxious about it. "It was very disappointing not to have been able to win a championship in the Wings of Liberty era, but I'm now very well adapted to Heart of the Swarm, and I will soon be able to win championships."
Flash also said that he was already prepared. "As long as I'm able to release my potential, I can win any time."
"Currently, I am determined to take it more easy. I believe that some day I will become champion. I am the type of late-bloomer player who becomes stronger as time goes by, and so even though I wasn't able to win in the Wings of Liberty era, I'm not worried. I'm feeling my level of play increasing everyday. In the Wings of Liberty era, I didn't work hard enough, and that's why I wasn't able to win a championship. That's why I will work even harder in Heart of the Swarm."
"The expansion is still new, and so it's very hard to predict a time when I'll win a championship. Rather than setting any special targets, I might as well work really hard. I'm the type of person who can have scary amounts of improvements as long as my potential is released, and so this period of time is the most important."
SPL and GSL will begin in the near future. There's still some time to practise now. and Flash would have to bring himself to the next level by tremendous amounts of practice.
"Now I feel really confident that I'd be able to get good results in GSL. I'm currently working very hard, and I hope to be able to get good results. I've already shown a preview at MLG, and I believe that I'd be able to continue performing well in GSL."
"If I had the chance, I want to take part in many more foreign tournaments. Of course, I also have to increase my level of play, but I really wish to take part in many tournaments. I was filled with regret that I wasn't able to attend any foreign tournaments last year. I hope not just to be able to take part in American tournaments, but also European tournaments as well."
Lastly, when talking about goals for 2013, Flash answered unhesitatingly, "Champion".
"My goal is to win every tournament I attend. Even though this is very difficult to accomplish in reality, I'll never know until I've tried. As long as my potential is released, there is the possibility of attaining the same level of dominance as in Starcraft 1."
At the end of the interview, Flash had some things to say to his fans.
"Through this MLG, I believe many fans have came to understand Heart of the Swarm and even came to like it. With the support that everyone has for me, I will become a player who never stops improving. I'll make use of my current form to grow quickly, and strive to become the best player. Thank you everyone."