Charles “Mystvc” Johnston is looking forward to coaching his Toronto Ultra Academy NA team at Challengers Champs.
His team are in a fantastic position to hold the  seed for the event in Los Angeles.
They are coming into the event fresh on the back of winning the Boston Open.
Not every team is in a position as fortunate as the Ultra NA team, with just eight teams playing to join them in representing NA at Challengers Champs.
The format has been widely criticised and Mystvc acknowledges that too.
Mystvc told The Rotation: “We are beneficiaries of this system. In terms of the bigger picture of challengers and the health of the whole community and the future of CoD, this is not a very good system.
“There are a lot of teams, for example, the Mohak and Brack team that just formed. Those players may or may not actually have cohesion.
“They form because of this system that forces pro points to be the determining factor. Some teams, some players, could do well at the beginning of the year and some could do well at the end of the year.”
The current system favours players who learn the game quickly and are able to compete at the top level throughout the year. It fails to allow teams that hit form at the end of the year to be able to compete in the biggest tournaments of the year.
In a game like Call of Duty, where the fundamentals of the game change each year, it’s so hard to count on yourself being able to be lights out immediately.
Mystvc added: “Those players that do develop later on and they don’t learn quite as fast by the end of the year when they’re hitting their form, it’s already chalked, they don’t have a chance.
“There are a lot of players that learn a little bit slower, but then they’re absolutely amazing by Champs time. By then it doesn’t really even matter. There are a lot of pros that are the same way.”
The Toronto Ultra Academy NA side have the best average placement on LAN this season of any team. They also won Stage 3 and Stage 4 of the NA Elite.
The only LAN event they didn’t win was their home one. They placed second in Toronto, losing out to a team featuring Mike “Majormaniak” Szymaniak.
Mystvc told us: “On one hand, I don’t feel bad that we have the number one seed because my team has been so consistent. We have been really good since we formed. I’ll gladly take that first seed because we did earn it.
“But then just the nature of Challengers and how much people switch teams, it’s hard for the rest of the community to do that.”
Older open bracket formats would be more accepted by the competitive community, with the chance for anyone to enter and play in them.
“I think an older system where more teams can be there for the tournament is probably better. That’s because certain players aren’t as successful at the beginning of the year.
“You have unfortunate circumstances at the beginning of the year, you don’t have a good team for the first few tournaments, and then you kind of work your way up.”
Bringing in Adam “Assault” Garcia
Right after winning the Elite Stage 4 event, Toronto Ultra NA made a roster change. They brought in Adam “Assault” Garcia to the squad in place of Mohak “MohaK” Kumar.
Many people questioned the move, with the team already established as winning outfit. Bringing Assault into the mix was a way of increasing the experience throughout the squad.
Mystvc said: “The composition of my team prior was four young kids, right. They are all trying to work their way up.
“In order to be a consistent, winning team, you need a little bit of veteran experience. It’s the same reason that Seattle was able to take home major three.
“They brought on a bunch of rookies that were extremely talented and had good reputations, et cetera.
“You put them around Lamar “Accuracy” Abedi and Lamar is going to train them to be the right thing, to be the right players. He brings the best out of them.”
Former World Champion
Assault is a former World Champion in his own right. His impact in-game is immeasurable.
Charles added: “With Adam, it’s a lot easier because he’s been on the big stage. He’s been around for a while.
“He just turned 26. He’s been in the league, we just needed somebody to keep the team grounded in-game, in the moment.”
Being able to keep their heads is something that Assault has really helped the squad do since he came in.
“When it was just when it was the original four, we would have moments where we were inconsistent on game day in terms of energy and anxiety.
“Adam helps keep everybody focused and have their minds focused on the right things.”
That focus is one of the big reasons that the team were able to come away from Boston with the event win. Even Thomas “Scrappy” Ernst told us that he thought they wouldn’t have won the event if MohaK was still in the team.
Mystvc added: “[Adam] is always telling them to do this, this, this, and don’t forget to do this. He’s kind of micromanaging the game the way it needs to be.
“He said it was the easiest CoD he’s played all year because the other three were all on the same page about how to play situationally.
“They would tell him, ‘Adam, we need you to go here. Adam do this, do that.’ He just said it was just so easy to fit in.”
Chemistry wins matches
Adding Adam to the team was easy because of how much chemistry the other members of the team already had. Scrappy, alongside Charlie “Hicksy” Hicks and Javi “Vikul” Milagro.
Mystvc said: “The other three had chemistry. It made his life easier. When he’s comfortable, he’s just gonna enable the subs to do their best.
“He’s going to enable Javi to go rogue and be a crazy pushout sub. Boston was some of Javi’s highest engagement CoD the whole season.”
Vikul really showed how much ability he has during the Boston Open. He showcased his take-over ability on a number of occasions.
“He was able to because Adam was the slow, balanced piece. Javi could just go rogue, that’s something that I’ve been trying to bring out of him for a while.
“Every rep of Cod, especially Vanguard is going to be different. Every single one is going to be completely different because of how random the game is and the spawn system is.
“I’ve done a good job of making sure that they are on the same page with situationals.”
Challengers Champs runs from August 4-7. The tournament is being held in Los Angeles. Toronto Ultra Academy NA will play against some of the other top AM teams in the world at the event.
Photo via Toronto Ultra
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