Jessica S. August 8, 2020
Heralded by Fusion coach Christopher “ChrisTFer” Graham as one of Overwatch’s most naturally gifted players, Kim “Alarm” Kyung-bo is a fierce competitor every time he steps up to the Overwatch League stage.
Fans hoped that Alarm would be brought up to the Fusion roster for the third season of the OWL, and they were not disappointed when he not only got brought up, but made the starting roster. Support mains don’t always get the credit they deserve, but Alarm’s skill has brought him to the forefront of both the MVP and Rookie of the Year conversations.
WIN.gg had the opportunity to talk with Alarm ahead of the Countdown Cup to get some perspective on how his season is going and if he believes a Grand Finals win may be in his future.
You went from a successful run in Contenders with Fusion University to the Fusion roster in a season where the team is in a good spot to return to the Grand Finals. Do you feel any pressure from the hype that surrounded your break into OWL after your success in Contenders?
Alarm: At the beginning of the season I felt a bit nervous and under pressure, but I no longer feel the pressure because I feel as though my [skill] was not overstated in Contenders.
After being with the Fusion and Fusion University for so long, do you think there are any benefits with sticking with the same organization for so long? Any drawbacks?
I feel like I earned a lot of credibility during my time with Fusion University. It was very beneficial for me to have the opportunity to learn English when I was communicating with my teammates. I was also able to broaden my horizons and build relationships with other foreigners like Beast in America.
One of the challenges for players who lived in Korea was the fact that they had to wake up early in the morning to practice due to the time differences, which caused some additional stress.
What were the biggest changes moving from Contenders to OWL? What differences are there in terms of how you prepare for matches?
The biggest change I noticed from Contenders to OWL was the attention I received. Once I felt how interested fans were in my performance, it naturally drove me to work harder and with more passion.
With more staff and coaches preparing the team for matches, we are able to create a better group synergy and system.
You are considered a strong candidate for Rookie of the Year. What do you think about that?
When I started this season, I set my goal to win. I was very glad and honored that many people mentioned me for the Rookie award. I am working very hard for the rest of this season and hope to get selected as Rookie of the Year.
The Fusion is having a great season, and now that the season is coming to a close, there are talks of who will be competing in the Grand Finals. What do you think it will take to get to the finals this year? Which teams are your biggest obstacles for that spot?
I don’t think there will be any more patches, so I think the tournament this month is extremely important. The team that wins the tournament this month will be one of the two teams going to the semifinal.
Currently, the most powerful teams from the Atlantic division are us, Paris, and Shock.
I feel confident that we will win this tournament.
For the Countdown Cup, Fusion seeded at #3. Paris Eternal is likely going to be the next team you play, and you’ve had trouble with Paris in past matchups. Does your preparation change for that match? What is your mindset going into it?
I am not too worried. Even though it hasn’t been a long time, our team improved a lot since the last tournament. Therefore, I believe that we are going to win.
Our mindset is the same as usual. We are always going to work hard.
The San Francisco Shock is another team that will likely make it to the finals in the Countdown Cup, and is a strong contender for the Grand Finals. What impact do you think the result of that match will have on your preparation for playoffs?
We were defeated the last time we competed against Shock, so I want to meet them again and win this time.
What do you miss most about your home?
I miss everything. I miss my dog Hacky, my friends, my family, and Korean food.
What is your favorite thing about living in Philadelphia? Least favorite?
The best thing about living in Philadelphia is the cheesesteaks. My least favorite is the weather. There are so many lightning strikes.
Have you always wanted to play games professionally?
Of course I always wanted to play professionally, but sometimes it is nice to practice in a fun environment.
What hobby or skill of yours do you fans would be surprised to learn about?
I think many fans may already know this, but working out and exercising is my hobby.