HyDra talks 'good CoD', Duolingo, SnD mastery, and rings

HyDra talks 'good CoD', Duolingo, SnD mastery, and rings
Call of Duty League

Written by 

Jack Marsh


16th Jun 2023 17:43

Paco "HyDra" Rusiewiez. The French phenom. The all-star. MVP. Lurker. Slayer. The future king.

A boxing introducer would have a breakdown announcing his arrival to a KSI show match, but the nicknames are justified.

HyDra is no longer the same raw prodigy that we once saw emerge from a distant country. He’s now morphed into a finished article and is widely discussed to be the best Call of Duty player in the world.

Now, with a conquest to be crowned as a Call of Duty world champion fully underway, GGRecon sat down with HyDra to discuss just what makes him tick, including mastering Search and Destroy, grinding Duolingo, and crafting a team mentality.

Watch the full interview here:


Kicking things off you've got the first win under your belts this weekend. What's it like in the NYSL camp? Are you carrying through the momentum from Major V?

We are just vibing, you know? We were down 0-2 and we were just like 'That was just a warm-up'. On map three we just had momentum and then on Hydroelectric, ROKKR didn't touch the point I think - I think they were just scared of it - and then SnD we just did our thing.

Were there any nerves going into map one and two, because it felt a little bit cagey for you?

I feel that as a team, at least our first map is always kind of "iffy", even in scrims. When we scrim the first map is always a like warmup. Then, we come on stronger. But no, map one and two they [ROKKR] just played good CoD if I'm being honest. We didn't play good CoD.

Attach did come out swinging to be fair. He looked good back to his usual best.

For you guys, it seems like Search and Destroy is the bread and butter, and as the old saying goes, it wins championships.

What are your thoughts on your SnD performances so far, because it seems to be centred around activating you?

I don't think it's centred around anyone, I feel like everyone's doing like what they need to do and I'm just doing what someone's telling me to, or what I'm saying to other teammates.

So that can be Kismet making the play, or it can be me hiding by doing nothing on the map; obviously, I'm not the type of player to just be sitting in the corner, you know what I'm saying? I'm like confident in my plays. I am making probably most of the plays on my team, but that's just because I'm just confident with what I'm doing

How have you found that transition within a team? Because in previous instalments of New York, you've been just the outright slayer. It's a "let Hydra do his thing and we'll all slip in around it" mentality.

But this year it's much more team-based. It's methodical and clever about how you're retaking sites and stuff like that. How have you found that transition in listening to your teammates a lot more and being a better team player?

Just trust.

I trust my teammate in what they're doing. I'm going to trust myself in what I'm doing every time. For example, last year I had trust in my teammates, but not as much as I do right now, which makes me just focus on my own gameplay. I don't have to be like 'oh, you needed to do this, you needed to do that, you had to do this so I could do that'.

Right now, I'm just doing what I'm feeling, literally. I'm not even thinking if I'm being honest. If it works fine. If it doesn't work then fine too, I will try other things the next time. 

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How hard have you all been working on making sure that SnD is like perfect? Because going into Champs it is crucial.

Oh, we had three sets every day for like f**king three weeks, maybe a month in a row.

We had three sets against AM teams, Pro teams, against anyone. We were staying late watching VODs on how to do it. We were stealing s**t from other teams. Everyone was going to the office at 9:00 AM just to watch SnD. We were going crazy to make sure our Search is special.

Well, it's obviously worked. You guys are on fire and have probably taken over from FaZe, as the best SnD team in the game right now.

You were up on stage with your All-Stars jacket on before, but how have you found your performance so far this year? Do you think you've got more to offer?

Obviously, it's like it feels good to have like 'personal awards', it does feel good. I've been working a lot, probably way more than I was before, so it does feel good to see the work pay off.

Good. And now you're in a prime position to be the first-ever European world champion. I know quite a lot of people have tried before, but how would it feel for you to take the accolade and be the first EU champ?

It doesn't matter. I could be American, French, Canadian, or anything. I'm here to just win. I could be anything. I could have been German. It would have been the same thing.

Well, that's fair. And credit to you, just speaking to you now, I can tell how much your English has come on since you moved to America. 

I know you spend a lot of effort in learning English and communicating. Is it now reaping its rewards?

So the first time I came to the league, I could not even say a whole sentence to my teammates. I couldn't even do it. You should ask Clayster. He would tell you. Because holy s**t, my English was so bad.

I was literally on my phone 24 hours a day, Literally on Duolingo. I was doing Duolingo, watching movies, and watching shows in English with subtitles in French because at the beginning I couldn't understand what they were saying

What helped me out was teaming up with two English people in Challengers, when I was back in EU. They actually helped me even though they were English and not American.

Even when I was playing in Challengers in America with Nato, Prolute, and Spart. I was not even talking to them because I couldn't even understand what they were saying to me. I was just silent.

I'm just proud of myself for how I can talk right now, even if it's not perfect. Like slang and all of this s**t I don't understand sometimes and I'm just like, 'What did he say to me?'

When I first went to America, the only person I could understand was Tommy [ZooMaa]. Every time we would talk I'd be like, 'damn, I understand this guy', and then Clayster would come to talk to me and I would be like, 'What the f**k did he say?'

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How do you feel it's benefited your game? Do you feel like being able to communicate has made you a better player? 

Absolutely. Yeah. Absolutely. 

It's both outside of the game and in-game with my confidence really. My confidence cannot be high if I can't even understand what my teammates are saying to me. They can be gassing me up saying 'That was good' and I'd be like, 'What did you say to me?'.

I can put more input into my game too. If I want my teammates to do something or listen to what they want me to do, they can literally speak to me and I can understand; like my first year Clay would probably say something to me and I'd understand, but then going in-game and I don't know what the f**k he was saying to me. 

Well, it's definitely showing and with the MVP award possibly coming your way - either you or aBeZy - it's clear to see that everything that you're doing is working.

Last question, this time last year we saw LA Thieves go Major win, Champs win. What are your thoughts on history repeating itself, seeing that New York Subliners has got the Major, Champs is on the wall. Do you think you can do it?

That's why I'm here Absolutely. And if I couldn't do it, I would not be here.

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New York Subliners now face OpTic Texas to book a place in the top four, taking place on June 16.

Jack Marsh
About the author
Jack Marsh
Jack is an Esports Journalist at GGRecon. Graduating from the University of Chester, with a BA Honours degree in Journalism, Jack is an avid esports enthusiast and specialises in Rocket League, Call of Duty, VALORANT, and trending gaming news.
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