Saturday, 28 April 2018

Aces High: An Interview With Spitfire General Manager Susie "LilSusie" Kim


When you think of Susie Kim there's one thing that come to mind, that she is the original esports Mum. Susie has been helping to guide young professional gamers through the rigours of the Starcraft II and League of Legends esports scene over the last decade. After working as an esport specialist for Twitch.TV, Susie has now come over to the Spitfire as General Manager to help guide the team to the league title and to help the teams Korean players acclimatise to living in the United States of America.   

Aces High is a series that attempts to connect the London Spitfire to the fans by providing information and interviews from the team so that you can get to know who they are that little bit further. This is the fifth episode of Aces High which has been and will be running throughout the season. If you want to read any of the previous interviews, then follow the Aces High link for more content.

Hi Susie, thank you for answering some questions, you’ve come over to the Spitfire as GM after recently working with Twitch and in both esports scene’s for Starcraft and LoL in the past. How different are you expecting the GM role with the Spitfire to be and what aspects from your previous roles are you looking to use with the Spitfire.

I’ve held a lot of different positions over the years I’ve been in esports. But the commonality of them was that I’ve always been someone who cared about people, especially MY people. The GM role at Spitfire doesn’t feel very different at all because of that. If anything it allows me to focus my strengths towards one team. My previous translator skills allow me to help our players communicate with others, my previous teaching experiences have honed me to be able to manage a large group of people of a similar age group. I’ve also watched a bunch of players across different games grow from rookie first-year players to veteran professionals and so I plan to apply that knowledge to the Spitfire players.

As the GM of the team what level of interaction will you have with coaches Changgoon and JFeel? Are you going to handle player and staff roster changes or will this be dealt with elsewhere?

I work very closely with the coaches, actually. We discuss player rosters and how each player interacts with one another everyday. I definitely have a say in player and staff rosters decisions but I would never make any decisions until I’ve heard the opinions and arguments from everyone who might be affected.

What Direction are you planning on taking the team going forward? What are your target goals you’ve set for yourself?

My goal is to just make sure that the team is happy, their needs are taken care of and that I can help in any way possible. Of course our goal is to win, but making sure the players are happy and healthy is also very important to me.

In your AMA you mentioned that you play Bastion, D’Va and Lucio. If you had to pick one player from the team to help you improve on one of these heroes, who would it be and why?

I would ask Closer, even though he’s a support player. He’s very communicative when it comes to the game and just very sweet in character; I think he’s be most patient with me as I am pretty bad at the game.

Competition in the league is looking high, out of the remaining 11 teams, who do you feel is the Spitfires biggest contest.

I think at this point, everyone has gotten so much better. It’s hard to say. I think it would be great to beat Philly after having lost to them 3-2 twice now. It would be great to finally get a win off of Gladiators too. NYXL is still very strong and Boston has been surprising us all. I think we just need to be on our toes for every match and see everyone as a playoff contender.

My last question is usually one asking what jersey I should get but as there are no LilSusie jerseys, what advice would you give to someone reading this who wants to break in to the esports scene.

Haha, you can get a custom London jersey with your own name! My advice for people who want to get into esports is to find what you are good at, see how you can apply your skills in esports and work hard towards it while networking.

I want to thank Susie again for taking the time out to of her busy schedule to answer a few questions. Remember that the Spitfire play their second game of the week against the San Francisco Shock on Saturday 28th at 9PM BST. 

You can follow myself and Susie on Twitter. 
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