Interview with Reckful

BY Andrew Miesner / October 15, 2009

MLG Anaheim is mere three weeks away and teams are already training for the event, anticipating the challenge that will be the competition at the Convention Center, the holy halls which have accommodated so many great WoW tournaments in the past such as Blizzcon. Looking at the line ups, it will be one tough and exciting tournament especially for those teams who chose RMP as their main class composition. The meta-game currently present in WoW can be summarized in one phrase, “Be RMP or counter it”. We sat down with our very own Byron “Reckful” Bernstein, a member of the only RMP which made it into the final rounds at MLG Dallas.  

Hey Reckful, you’re not only an outstanding Rogue but you’re also the host of a pretty popular site ( in which you show yourself and other top players from your guild performing in Arena. How did you come up with this idea, how is the feedback so far and will you expand the project in the future?  

Reckful: My brother came up with the idea. Originally it was just for me and my old partner (fuzion) to stream 2v2, side by side, because people wanted to see both our perspectives then our next goal was to get me/venruki/sodah streaming three perspective 3v3 simultaneously but they lag a bit streaming and sometimes we just don’t want to show everything. The feedback is great – people seem to always want more. The Project is expanding. 

You’re one of the “new age” rogue heroes or at least that’s what the community calls you. The skill set has drastically changed and some people say it’s less of a finesse game. With a pretty simple spec as Mutilate/Preparation and training the Dps target mostly as a Rogue nowadays, what do you think are the things that singles out a good Rogue from the rest?  

Reckful: It comes down to knowing when to kite, when to vanish, when to weapon swap deadly/wound and when to pool energy.  

Sounds reasonable. Even though many teams are playing the RMP line-up, the play-styles are considerably different. SK US has Pookz crowd controlling often and Enforcer is dealing the damage. Ensidia has Kalimist calling the shots and he hangs back to open on the enemy in the right moment. How would you describe your team’s way of RMP? 

Reckful: We’re different here. We don’t have one person calling targets. It’s usually great; we all have a good sense of what’s going on. But sometimes we argue mid-game

When, for example, I kidneyed Yog in game 3 vs fnatic at MLG Dallas and Venruki deep froze Woundman – that wasn’t us intentionally splitting DPS, we were arguing. Same thing game 1 vs SK, I called to switch Pookz and Ven wanted to stay on Enforcer. I had Pookz in a full CS/KS after block and I knew he had Trinket and Blink on Cooldown and Ven was still shooting Enforcer but he switched eventually and it worked out. Since we’re all looking for swap opportunities we see things that a single player wouldn’t. There’s no way Pookz will see everything.

Ven was always the team leader on his team and I was always team leader on mine, so we had that clashing at first, but now it just helps us get a broader perspective on what’s going on. I didnt see the swap opportunity on woundman on that Fnatic game for example neither. 

Some people say with comps like Beastcleave, Hunter/Death Knight/Paladin and also the SK EU comp of Death Knight/Warlock/Druid at the tournaments, RMP simply can’t go all the way anymore. You’re very familiar with the Rogue Priest Ret combo, being one of the first players over the 3k mark and also beating fnatic to Furious Gladiator. Venruki also plays a Retribution Paladin. Could that be your Ace up your sleeve or is your team in trouble?  

Reckful: It’s very difficult to go all the way with RMP, yes.But Rogue/Ret/Priest is a bad comp to swap to in these situations, usually. It’s just all we had last time.We tried practicing the comp on live but it was just too boring for me and Sodah. I can’t stand playing the composition anymore, it has so little depth. Seriously we usually just called “zerg the healer”, got on him and it usually worked out best with no swaps. We’re planning to rough it out with RMP probably, although i know some comps we could play.

Venruki isn’t scared of Scleave at all playing RMP. We beat Massive’s 7-1 but UA+chains always scared and annoyed me. 

Your team is a part of the biggest Arena PvP guild at least outside of Asia, with many players who are also going to be in Anaheim. You’re even playing with Azael from Evil Geniuses in your 5s team. Does this make it harder for you to play against them or is it maybe even an advantage?  

Reckful: No. Last tournament we played against SK while being good friends with no hard feelings. 

Do you talk about strategies with them? 

Reckful: Rarely. We just bullshit in vent with Pookz yelling “oop dat a wookie”

Azael is now of my best friends now too. It really shouldn’t affect the games at all though. I know he’s amazing at Lock, how’s that an advantage? He is flawless. 

Which teams are you afraid of? Moreover if you had to name the four final teams which make it out of round robin, who would that be? 

Reckful: I feel the non-RMP non-RLS teams just have a free ride to top 4then it’ll be a battle between the rest of us for the 4th slot. I can’t say anything with certainty, it’ll be tough. If it were eight RMPs I’d be confident. It’s hard to be confident with comps like Beast Cleave existing. I feel they way you do, RMP doesn’t feel top tier when people come into tournaments running Beast Cleave, PHD and so on. 

Are the 3.3 buffs which have been announced so far enough for RMP to be a top notch comp again? 

Reckful: Yeah probably. I stick to thinking UA + Chains is broken forever though.