Hafficool: “I’m not that sure I will ever get picked for OWL, so I thought about it and I started doing university again at the start of this year. I’m just using it as a backup plan, I still want to compete […] “
Easily one of the most talented players that have yet to grace the Overwatch League stage is Icelandic player, Hafþór "Hafficool" Hákonarson. Another veteran talent that has been grinding away at the game for years, Hafficool has found recent success with the academy team for the London Spitfire, the British Hurricane. Hafficool spoke with Esports Heaven about some of his most fond Overwatch memories, his confidence level going into this season of Overwatch Contenders, and his friendship with bock1.In a recent Reddit AMA, you mentioned that one of your fondest memories is where Coolmatt asked you to join Fnatic. Can you elaborate on the story and walk us through that moment for you? If I remember correctly, this happened at MLG Vegas and you were still a stand-in at the time?Yeah, they took me as a stand-in for Dreamhack Winter and MLG. It was after we beat Complexity on stage on a super close Route 66 map where I got a big D.Va bomb to win. He talked to the team and coach and then on stage asked me if I wanted to join Fnatic, which was a really big thing for me since it was the first organized team I joined. Bock1 and yourself have been tied together for about seventeen months. Would you say that you are the closest to him out of all your teammates? What’s kept you two together for so long?We played together in 123 and he joined this team before me and helped get me on as well. Bock and I are good friends, been playing together for so long and well the biggest reason we’re still together is that neither of us has been picked up for OWL. We’re both happy in Hurricane so there’s no reason to join another team.In an interview with over.gg you were fairly critical of the scouting and drafting process for the teams in season one of the Overwatch League. You cited that having LAN experience was crucial and you were surprised that so many inexperienced players were getting called up. Do you still think that is the case? Do you think having players with experience in the LAN environment would improve some Overwatch League teams?I don’t think the LAN experience part matters that much since you play so many games anyway, it just was super weird to me how few EU players were getting picked up when we were the better region at the time. For example pretty much every player that got top 4 in NA that season got picked up but barely half of the top 4 EU players got picked up.Last season you put a 100% chance that the British Hurricane would win Overwatch Contenders Europe Season 3 and that wasn’t the case as Team Gigantti took home their second Contenders title. Walk me through the aftermath of the loss. What was the team atmosphere like? What was going through your head? [The] atmosphere wasn’t that bad, we knew we were the second-best team and we showed it. We were just really bummed out about not winning and I think most of us thought we should have won. As a follow-up, do you think that if you beat Team Gigantti you would have coasted to the grand finals and won? After speaking with your former analyst, Dream, he certainly thought you would, so I wanted to get your take on the matter.Yeah, I’m 99% sure we would have beat the rest, we were really confident versus all the other teams. It was just that Gigantti’s playstyle kind of countered us, they are really good at peeling and playing slow which is the direct counter to Doomfist goats.On the short list of Overwatch Contenders players that could be seen in the next season, your name is always on the list. What keeps your motivation up after missing the last two seasons?When I didn’t get picked up for Season 1 I was sure I’d get picked up for Season 2 if I just practiced hard but that obviously didn’t happen. Right now I’m not that sure I will ever get picked for OWL, so I thought about it and I started doing university again at the start of this year. I’m just using it as a backup plan, I still want to compete and I will drop my studies if I ever get signed to OWL.To end, give us a hard prediction of how you think this season of Contenders will go. Is British Hurricane going all the way? Will you bring home a second title?We win 100%.Joseph “Volamel” Franco has followed esports since the MLGs of 2006. He started out primarily following Starcraft 2, Halo 3, and Super Smash Bros. Melee. He has transitioned from viewer to journalist and writes freelance primarily about Overwatch and League of Legends. If you would like to know more or follow his thoughts on esports you can follow him at@Volamel.Images courtesy of Blizzard Entertainment.