Those of us following the Clash Royale leaderboard (aka Top Royales) should be familiar with 2 names by now: 鍾培生 and HKEsports. Since the game began, 鍾培生 has been sitting comfortably on top of the global leaderboard, and his Clan HKEsports similarly positioned at the Top 1-2 in the World. Over time, another HKEsport player called 鍾培生的小號 (even if you can’t read Chinese you may be able to make out the similarity in the characters) made his way up the leaderboard to become the #2 player in the Global ranks. It may come as a surprise to many then that both accounts are actually played by the same person: Hong Kong Esports founder and CEO Derek Cheung! Derek is no stranger to making a name for himself in top mobile games, having also been the #1 ranked player on Boom Beach and the first player to collect all Golden cards in Hearthstone. We had the opportunity to talk to Derek to get his thoughts on Clash Royale, and other topics relating to the world of mobile eSports.
MoEsport: So first of all, who is 鍾培生? And why do you use that as your game handle?
DC: That’s my real name on my id card. I use my real name on forums and games.
MoEsport: I’m guessing that 鍾培生的小號 is probably played by one of your team members at HKEsports right?
DC: Oh no, I play that on too, since I have 3 iPhones. The main account takes too long to queue, so I made another account to play more.
MoEsport: Wow! Well let’s backtrack a little bit, what games were you playing before you got into Clash Royale?
DC: I play a lot (and I mean a lot) of games. DoTA, LoL, Hearthstone, WoW, Diablo, Boom Beach… like everything.
MoEsport: And how did you come across Clash Royale? Why are you dedicating your time on this game over others?
DC: I found out through the Supercell Forum. I don’t play as much games nowadays, so mobile games such as Hearthstone and Clash Royale are like much only choice, since I’m pretty busy at work. Oh I also play Pokemon Shuffle.
MoEsport: HKEsports is obviously competing in eSports, and now you’re investing a lot of time (and money!) into this game. Do you see Clash Royale being a future eSports hit?
DC: I think it’ll be hard for the game to be a true eSports hit, since the skill cap is not very high. It’s only a 3 minute game, and the skills required for the game such as placing things and calculating mana (elixir) are not that difficult.
MoEsport: Is there anything the game can change then, to make it into something more suitable as an eSports product? For comparison, Hearthstone is a game that is also easy to learn but hard to master, but the variation in gameplay is also richer.
DC: It’s hard to see now since Hearthstone has hundreds of cards, and Clash Royale only has 42, and you need to upgrade them. However I like what they’re doing with the balancing, and nerfing many of the OP stuff.
MoEsport: Same here, I think it’s great that they are tackling these problems during soft launch. Another change that’s on the way is tournament mode. It sounds like you’re a little skeptical about Clash Royale being a true eSports game, but if there was a world tournament in the future and you are invited, would you compete?
DC: Sure, it will depend on what kind of tournament though!
MoEsport: My guess would be something during ClashCon at Finland, just my prediction! Has Supercell reached out to you directly at all, for any suggestions on the game or just a quick “thank you for being so awesome at the game”?
DC: Nope. We chatted when I was global rank #1 for Boom Beach, but not for Clash Royale.
MoEsport: Do you have any advice for players who are looking to get better at Clash Royale?
DC: Always learn from your mistakes, and understand the cards. Also learn to calculate elixir.
MoEsport: Your Clan is called HKEsports, but I presume that it’s open for anyone to join right? So how does one apply to join the HKESport clan??
DC: To join our clan you will need to be Tower Level 9 and have 2450+ trophies.
MoEsport: I’m almost there at Tower Level 7 and 2100 trophies… maybe one day I’ll apply too! Anyway thanks for your time Derek!
DC: (Grin Face)
To find out more about Derek and his Hong Kong Esports team, be sure to check out their Facebook page!