Interview With showliana on Joining Dignitas
Tue 15th Sep 2020 - 7:27pm
Juliana "showliana" Maransaldi is the newest addition to join our CS:GO/VALORANT squad. We had a talk with the Brazilian star to know more about how the recruitment process worked, how she’s adapting, and her competitive past.
You can read the Portuguese version of this interview here.
Welcome to Dignitas! How do you feel about representing this organization?
showliana: Thank you very much! I feel very happy and, in a way, very privileged, because I know that many girls wanted the spot I got! It was always my dream to play on a high-level team, they all play very well, already won several world championships, they have a lot of experience and I feel really fulfilled.
Would you like to talk about your competitive past so that our readers can get to know you a little better?
showliana: I started playing competitively in 2007, on CS 1.6. I played two world championships in that game, ESWC 2010 and 2011, both in France. I played 1.6 for many years, I think it was 5 years in a row, then I stopped in 2012 to go to college, to study, because at that time CS was a hobby, you could not consider it a profession as esports were still crawling. I started working too, but in a short time, I realized that I missed playing a lot and over the years I started to see that things were becoming more professional.
I saw FalleN and the work he was doing for the Brazilian scene. I had him as a friend on Facebook, I also had other people, and I saw that they were really making a living from esports, so I decided to bet on this career. I dropped everything and really started playing again. I only intended to be a streamer, but it was very quick for people to call me to teams, so I ended up competing again and at the end of 2016 I started playing CS: GO and that's it. That’s where I still am today.
And it's been years already! (laughs) Tell me, what is the first thing that comes to mind when you think about Dignitas?
showliana: It’s an organization that I have always admired a lot. It already has a very important past and now that I'm part of it, that I'm in, I admire it even more! I really like the way things work in here, I feel that the organization pays a lot of attention to us, we are always in contact with them, they are always talking to us and I think this is very important. Other than that, there are several initiatives within the Dignitas that I think are really cool, such as the issue of diversity, LGBT, and other several little things that make a difference and I am very happy to be a part of it.
How did the tryouts and recruitment process work? How did you get to the point where you got the spot?
showliana: Tryouts started when I saw that they needed a fifth player. I talked to EMUHLEET, I already knew her and, in fact, I had already done other tests to join their team in the past, but it didn't work. I’ve always liked her, she liked me too, and when I saw that they needed a fifth player I sent a message to them, we scheduled a tryout, and the first time we played I got along really well with the girls. I think the big difference is that I got new things into the game, I wanted to do different plays with them, I brought some strategies and showed some things that were not working and suggested some changes... and I think that was they were looking for, someone who had an attitude within the game. We played that first time, they already wanted to schedule another day, we played another.
Then, they wanted to schedule one more... the other times I did tests with them, it was just one day! So by the time they asked me to play another day I already knew that I was doing well and that something was different from the other times, so I think in was in the third time we trained together that they invited me to join the team, they said that they found me a very complete player, that they didn’t want to keep looking because they thought it would work with me, that they were very happy... and that was it, from then on the bureaucracies of signing contracts and everything started, but that's more or less how it happened.
What about communication - is it a problem? Since you’re Brazilian and they are American...
showliana: I wouldn't say it's a problem. I think that sometimes it gets in the way because there are some terms within the game that as much as I know how to speak English, there are some that I needed to go through certain situations to understand what they were saying. But it was something that happened once, I asked and quickly understood it, but what I find most difficult at this moment is that since I’m still in Brazil, every time I play here I talk in Portuguese, and every time I practice I talk in English. The first thing that comes to my mind when I go to play with my friends is English and the first thing that comes to mind when I go to play with them is Portuguese (laughs) and it annoys me! I would not say it has been a big problem and I believe that when I move to the United States, it will be very easy.
You said that you are moving to the USA. Is it to be closer to the team?
showliana: Yes. When they called me, they asked if I would live in the USA and, in fact, it was always a dream of mine to live outside of Brazil. So for me, it was a bit of combining the useful with the pleasant it, there were a lot of great things at the same time! Without a doubt, it was already in my head if they ended up calling me, I would want to live abroad already! I want to go to Los Angeles, my work visa was approved yesterday, so now we are in this process - because of the pandemic the US consulate is closed here, I can't get my visa. There are still these pending issues, but I’ll soon be there.
Now focusing a little more on the game, you are joining a squad that is the first female team that competes in more than one game - CS: GO and VALORANT. How is that process working for you, considering that you only played CS: GO competitively?
showliana: When they asked me to join the team, I had stopped playing CS here in Brazil, and in the last few months before, I was just playing VALORANT. It is a game that I am very used to playing, I even played VALORANT championships, not professional teams of course, I played with friends, I played Twitch Rivals, I played the first ones that arrived in Brazil. It really was a game that I played every day for two months, I really like it. I think the scene is going to be big, Riot does a really cool job.
It’s cool that we can take advantage of other opportunities to increase our visibility, win more championships as well, and we're actually still trying to define how the training will be. Whether you want to or not, it is a bit complicated to train two games at the same time, it is something that we need to define better. But I believe that the ideal is whenever there is a championship coming up, we focus more on that specific game. But we are a CS team, we will play VALORANT, but our focus is CS. We really want to play the VALORANT championships, and we will do everything to be able to train both and win in both games.
And how is training going so far?
showliana: The training is good, but my ping is very high and not only mine... we have to play in a server located in Atlanta so I can get a lower ping playing from Brazil and that ends up making them lag too. We are each in a different place, we have EMUHLEET in California, milk is in Hawaii, rain is in Canada and Theia in Pennsylvania and ping has been an annoying thing in our training because it is obvious that it ends up getting in the way. But despite the ping, I think the training is going well, it is the first time that I have parachuted into a team, the other times it was always other girls joining my team and now I am the novice.
For me, it has been challenging, because like it or not, the American style of play is very different from the Brazilian. It is completely different. There are two extremes - while the American style is very fast and aggressive, the Brazilian style is very slow and safe. I'm still getting used to it, but I think I'm already picking up the pace! I am very excited to be able to play soon and be able to play with lower ping, but so far it is going very well!
To close the interview, do you want to leave a word to the Dignitas family and to all the new fans you have now that you joined?
showliana: It is a dream to be here, I was very well received by the whole team at Dignitas, by the players, by the people that the public does not know but works behind-the-scenes to make things happen, everyone made me feel super at home and it made me very happy! It is all very new for me to join a foreign organization. I am leaving my country to go to another country.
It is very important to feel this affection and to know that I have people with whom can I count on! Thanks to the fans, thank you very much, I knew it was something very hyped when my entry was announced, I think that nobody was expecting it to be a Brazilian, that it was me, and I was very happy. I was surprised by the absurd affection I received, so many positive messages I received. I didn't see any negative comments, I only saw people cheering and sending positive energy and I wanted to thank you!
You can reach out to showliana on Social Media!