Godsmilla ''I think [we] will keep on going and we won’t stop improving any time soon.''
Season 9 of the RLCS came with some surprises, one of which being Team Singularity’s 7th place finish. The team, fully comprised of rookies, includes Leon ‘Godsmilla’ Mares, Thomas ‘ThO’ Binkhorst, Joseph ‘noly’ Kidd and newly acquired coach, Jake ‘Jake’ Edwards.
Team Singularity (originally known as Flomp Resont, before being picked up by the Danish organisation) formed in August 2019. The team went on to qualify for the Rival Series (RLRS), finishing 4th in League Play before defeating Complexity twice in the promotion playoffs, to make it to the RLCS for the first time in the 3 players’ history.
The team defied more odds recently by winning The European Invitational, beating fellow RLCS teams Team Vitality and Endpoint on the way, and securing the $10,000 grand prize. Godsmilla himself is no stranger to the professional Rocket League scene, competing in multiple RLRSs, Dreamhack Valencia and more. He spoke with GGRecon to discuss the team, his competition, and the Rocket League Spring Series.
First off, congratulations on the victory in JohnnyBoi’s European Invitational! What was that like as a tournament, especially with a team like Sandrock involved?
Thank you so much first of all. Honestly compared to RLCS it felt very casual, I don’t know what it was. Maybe it was us knowing Johnny as more of a friend instead of a tournament organiser and a caster. It felt very, very casual and almost felt like scrims, but with money involved, which was nice. With Sandrock, it was nice to play against them in a big tournament, because before we played them in like small weekly tournaments but it’s nice to see a team from the Middle-Eastern region finally get a chance to prove themselves against the best teams in the world. And for everyone else, it’s nice to see how they play and I’m pretty sure that every team that faced off against them learned a lot about how they played, because they’re very different to all the other teams in Europe.
In the RLCS you managed a 7th place finish with a 4-5 record. What was the atmosphere like within the team after securing your RLCS Season 10 spot against Monaco?
It was okay, like before the season we were expected to get 10th by Reddit, Twitter and all the casters, but we in ourselves knew that we could achieve a lot together, and we knew that we’re a really underrated team. Our own personal goal was to get top 6 and we knew we could do that, but we had a kinda slow start in the RLCS. We kinda underestimated how the pressure would affect us, and we underestimated how teams would perform in the RLCS [compared to] how they perform in scrims. We did feel pretty good at the end, because we made a decent comeback and secured our spot for next season which is better than dropping back to RLRS [laughs]. I think we managed to prove a lot of people wrong about us, and we’re looking forward to perform[ing] a lot better next season.
The first 5 matches of the season couldn’t have been against tougher opponents, a victory over RV is something nobody expected. How much did that boost everybody's confidence?
I don’t think so actually. I think all of the teams in EU are really closely together skill wise, I don’t think there’s that much of a gap. So, I think even instead of Vitality, if we beat Endpoint that week; we would’ve got the same amount of confidence.
Touching on the team, you’ve got 2 shining stars in ThO and Noly. Just on ThO, what is he like as a player?
I like what ScrubKilla said about him recently on one of his streams, he said “ThO has one of the best mechanics in the game, he is very hard to play against. But he does not play very smart.” That’s what makes him so hard to play against. It is really hard to read what he is doing. Because of his good mechanics he is really really fast in doing all of the things he does as well. His role in the team is that he just causes trouble for the opponents, makes sure that we don’t miss out on pressure, and just tries to force mistakes.
Jake has very recently been announced as the team's new coach, what was the thought process around picking him up?
I personally have been a big fan of Jake for a long time, back when he joined We Dem Girlz. I met him at Dreamhack Valencia [and] we talked for a bit. I was really impressed with the way he thinks about the game. So when we were looking for a new coach he was the first one I hit up and messaged. He was very interested in coaching us as well. We had a little tryout and it went perfectly. Our personalities matched and it was fun to watch replays and analyse our gameplay together. Just from that session we gained so much, and we realised that the way he thinks about the game and how it should be played is exactly how we also think. It was the perfect match.
This was your first season in the RLCS, individually how would you rate your performances as a whole?
I’m pretty disappointed in myself to be honest. The first week against Reciprocity I played okay-ish. I felt pretty uncomfortable and the whole team felt uncomfortable to play, we didn’t know what it was, it was just a weird feeling to have your first match at the highest level possible. Then against Vitality, I felt like I finally knew how the pressure affects me and I knew how to play, but that got proven wrong very fast after we lost against Dignitas and Mouz where I probably played the worst I’ve ever played in my life, which is really sad to have in a doubleheader week. After that it was fine. I feel like my role in the team is to make Noly and ThO play as good as they can, and if one of them has an off-day it’s my time to step in. I felt like I managed that pretty well in the last 4 weeks of league play.
You mentioned earlier that you felt like you were top 6 quality, would you say that is your goal for next season?
100%. I think we’ve got what it takes. We’ve been improving constantly and consistently over the past 3 months, actually more since RLRS. I think it will keep on going and we won’t stop improving any time soon.
Recently the Spring Series has been announced. What do you make of the format, considering the lack of the world championships?
I think it’s good that Psyonix has done something. Obviously it’s a very rough situation to be in for everyone involved. But I think they made the best of it by changing the world's format to just regionals [and] putting the money that was left over from worlds into other tournaments to compete in. I like that they only invited the top 4 teams and made the rest open qualifiers, so then the RLRS teams and even below that have something to compete in. The bubble scene is kinda dead in Europe and we don’t really have many tournaments to play in. It’s nice that Psyonix supports the lower teams and gives them something to play for.
Lastly, BDS have already made it to the RLCS and Espanyol + Solary are in the promotion playoffs, what do you make of those 3 teams and are there any who you think would do some damage in the RLCS?
I considered BDS, formerly ARG, the best team in RLRS when we were in RLRS, so 2 seasons ago. They just felt like they always didn’t perform when they had to which was sad to see. So I’m very happy that they finally got what they deserved. They were easily the best team in RLRS this season as well. M0nkey M00n is easily the best player in RLRS so it’s very nice to finally see him in RLCS. I think they can perform really really well.
Espanyol, I’m not too sure about them. I think Tox is an amazing player, he is very new to the competitive scene. But he’s already proven himself and is rated very highly among the pros. They are a very inexperienced team, kinda like us last season, so there’s no telling how they are going to perform, same with Solary.
You can catch Godsmilla and Team Singularity competing in the Spring Series qualifiers, which we’ll cover, right here, at GGRecon.
Main image via Team Singularity.