Top Tips for Aspiring Competitive Gamers by Red Bull Esports Athlete and local FIFA champ, Thabo Moloi.
Hailing from the southern suburbs of Johannesburg, FIFA sensation, Thabo Moloi, otherwise known by his gamer tag “Yvng Savage“, is a local FIFA prodigy who burst onto the scene in 2018 out of nowhere to claim first prize in the VS Gaming FIFA festival. Since then, Moloi has become the first Red Bull Esport Athlete on the continent and has seen a steady growth in popularity and success, competing overseas with established team Goliath Gaming, leading team eBafana Bafana in the FIFA Stay and Play Cup 2020 and is ranked the best FIFA player in the country on PS4 (as per the official FIFA20 rankings). Cementing his ranking from being a relatively unknown player to tournament conqueror, Moloi has had to sharpen his skill through day and night in order to attain the level of success that he has acquired.
Inspiring many other young FIFA enthusiasts through his mastery of both console and game, Moloi shares his top tips for those looking to take their gaming to the next level and go pro.
Work on having a strong mental game
Whether your game is FIFA, Dota, Fortnite, Overwatch or any other major competitive title, the mental strength needed for disciplined, rigorous practice sessions and intense pace of play is not unlike that of any other competitive sport.
Maintaining focus during tournaments is paramount for success, regularly vitalizing with a can of Red Bull to lock in his concentration, Thabo says “At a top level, it comes down to who is in the better mind space during certain situations in the game”. Keeping your cool and razor-sharp focus takes practice and self-control.
Learn from losses
Thabo has doubtlessly had his fair share of losses with the amount of games he regularly plays. His attitude towards them is progressive as he says, “It’s important to take losses as lessons.”
In the journey to becoming a professional, victories are less important than progress. If you take the time to address the pitfalls in your gameplay and not take the losses to heart, you’re well on your way to shaping your mind into one of a pro gamer.
Always have respect for your opponents
Gaming, more than any other form of global competition, is perhaps the biggest example of not underestimating your opponents. Young players regularly take their opposition by surprise with incredible skill. Play your best in every match to keep a consistent level throughout.
Don’t hold back
“Make sure you put in the time, effort and dedication towards being the best player you can be,” says Thabo. It’s a universal rule that no one gets better without putting in the work.
When your general gameplay is established, focus on specific mechanics that you could still improve on. In FIFA, for example, that could be your passing, shooting, formation or dribbling.
Have fun while going at it
While this might seem contradictory to the above tips on taking it seriously and putting in the dedication, it’s not. Video games are inherently fun – that’s why most people start playing them in the first place.
As you get better and better, the hard work needed to go pro can require you to dig deep at times and it’s in these moments that your passion to play and love for the competition needs to drive you.
Competitive gaming is an increasingly popular aspiration for many young gamers across the country. Internationally, it’s a growing industry with real potential for full-time careers. Yvng Savage aspires to become an IT specialist when he leaves school, but don’t take your eyes off him anytime soon. His current goal is to become the #1 FIFA player in the world.