Written By: Steve Vegvari
Jack ‘Corelli’ Collier is one the members on the analyst team during the WorldGaming Network Rocket League Canadian Challenge finals.
On August 19th, Jack will provide his commentary and analysis for the finals alongside Stax and Liefx. Once a professional player, Jack decided to step into the role of casting. Previously, he has provided commentary for the tournaments such as the Universal Open and Rocket League Rival Series – Season 4 and 5.
We had a chance to speak with Jack about his role and what it takes to become a pro-level Rocket League player.
Steve: For those who may not be familiar, can you introduce yourself?
Jack: I started playing Rocket League since the day it came out. I have been a player that transitioned into casting. Outside of Rocket League I work full-time as a project manager.
Steve: How were you introduced to Rocket League?
Jack: The first time I saw Rocket League was on the 2015 E3 PlayStation conference. They had a tiny ten minute segment focusing smaller games from smaller developers.
Psyonix had a segment and they played Rocket League for about three minutes and that was the highlight of E3 for me. I thought the game was so cool. When the game came out on July 27th, I downloaded it and played until 4am that morning.
Steve: You come from the background of a pro-level player, what made you decide to shift into casting?
Jack: I was less of a decision and more of a “I had to”. During my senior year of college I had a lot of free time so I could play anywhere from four to twelve hours a day. I transitioned to casting because I was working a full-time job in San Francisco and could not commit the time to continue doing this. There was not any money in playing at the time so it was the right decision to move into casting.
Steve: What was the first Rocket League event that had you in the caster/analyst role?
Jack: My casting career is a little strange. The first event was when I was still and player and had no intention of being a caster. It was February of 2016 and I casted for Rocket League Central’s Rocket Royale. They wanted someone who was a player that could cast. I gave it a shot and it was fun.
Steve: In your opinion, how has the evolution process of the game been treated?
Jack: I think it has been a good grind for Rocket League. I think that the viewership and the growth of the game has been exponential. Looking at the numbers of players and viewers and the overall reception it seems to be pretty successful. I think everyone is very happy with where it ended up. For no one having expectations either. As expectations grew, Psyonix delivered on those.
Steve: Did you ever think it would keep growing to this magnitude?
Jack: I had a feeling this game was going to be extremely popular. If you look at the game on Twitch, it does not have a lot of popularity online. But, it is because a lot of people have not seen the game.
If you put Rocket League in front of people they immediately get hooked. It is one of those games where people had to see it being played on a pro-level and they just go “Wow, that is really cool.” Additionally, it helps that anyone watching it can learn and become better by it. It is one of those games that once in front of people will become more and more popular. It’s a very familiar game, much like traditional sports.
Infact, I took my parents to one of the events. They did not know anything about Rocket League, but were able to follow it immediately and that’s what they loved about it. For them, it is hard to understand games like League of Legends or Counter-Strike.
Steve: How do you expect the landscape to shift as more time passes?
Jack: Something in Rocket League and in most Esports is that there are really good teams that have been around for a while and trying to break into the pro-scene. I think with more and more events and majors and incentives for players to grind will give an opportunity for that bubble to burst.
A side note of that is I think there has been a lot of maturity. A lot of the players are really young. So as these kids start to get older and grind and seriously try to become a better player, the landscape will become a lot more competitive.
There is going to be a longer path to becoming pro. Right now the path is qualifying for Rival series and if you do well in your seed you have a chance. Also the the skill level to becoming a pro will increase significantly.
Steve: Since Rocket League has been around for a good chunk of time, what do the finalists of the Canadian Challenge have to do to really impress you?
Jack : I think it will be tough because of what we saw during the RLCS. It was the most hype moment Rocket League has ever seen and will ever see in a while. I think something that will impress anyone is due to the player composition of the tournament will be seeing teams come in and have good team synergy.
I think coming in a being able to play around other players and teams and having a superior playstyle. When you see a cohesive team on the field no matter their skill level, it is always fun to watch and has the opportunity to pull off more exciting plays.
Steve: From an analyst’s perspective, what are the key components to any great Rocket League team?
Jack: Synergy and playing well with other players. An additional component to that is individual skill for each player. Teams with great synergy will always play better than teams that have individual skill. But when the combination comes together between those two it is really special. We see that with pro-level teams and teams below that. It’s not just one or the other, but both are important.
Steve: What are some important aspects of the game you always have to keep an eye on when casting?
Jack: For me, I focus on two things. I focus on where the ball is and whether a player is on it. As an analyst as well, you have to also keep the scope in mind. If you have tunnel-vision and watch the best player on the team the whole time you’ll lose track.
For instance there are nuances of the game where you’ll find there has been a shot taken and the opposing team was unable to block it. You take in the scope of the entire game and you say “Oh, Blue team bumped away Orange team which opened up the goal.” You may not have seen this if you were just watching the play develop.
You have to almost have some foresight to not only see what is happening on the ball, who is rotating? Who is grabbing boosts? Who has boosts? It is all very important to know. The more knowledge you have on what is happening off camera, the better your analysis can be.
Steve: Where can readers keep up with you online?
Jack: You can find me on Twitter. Thanks!
For more interviews from the Rocket League Canadian Challenge, keep it locked to Inside WorldGaming Network.
About The Author: Steve Vegvari
Steve is based in Toronto, Ontario. His enthusiasm and adoration of the video game industry go back to the days of SNES. Find him on Twitter and join in on the escapades.
Check out our other interviews with the Canadian Challenge Finals Casters: