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 Interview :  Hope_

Name: Zeke
ESO2 Nickname/Famous nicknames: Hope_/IamHope
Age: 17
City: Miami, FL


Hoy, can you shortly introduce yourself?


I'm Zeke, I love computers, food, anime and sports.


Can you tell us your history in the video games? Especially in the Age of series.


I've been playing computer games since I was 5, I started with The Incredible Machine (awesome strategy game)
My first real RTS AOE 1, I played that on LAN with my bro, I never played online though. I started playing online with AOE2:TC in February 2001. My first strategy was something with the Mayan, I printed out 2 pages of a build order and complete strategy and I perfected that til no end. Then I had someone show me the same but 10x better! (GunZ) He was one of leaders of the AD clan, which disbanded and formed the now FeaR clan. He taught me alot and that gave me a good base for AOM. I never passed 1750 in AOC.

A year and a half later the AOM Alpha was released.
I got in the alpha test (sent in 50 applications, he he) and I played that for a month before the real thing came out, I was one of the top players in it. When the real thing came out I went straight to the top 20 (to my surprise) since I knew so much about the game already (playing for a whole month before everyone else gives you a big advantage) but as time progressed I sank down and rested at around 1800. Then something happened and I literally, after being 1800 for a few months, shot up to 2000+ with Zeus, beating alot of the top set players. (I even beat Halen when I got to 2k). Maybe it was my neat strat or my new found micro, but I did it and I did it fast. The set players kept getting better and better, so I switched to thor with a bit of isis on the side. I made it to the top 25 but that was about it.

Then WCG USA.. that's another story. I went to California and knocked out all 4 2k Set players into the loser bracket in a row, securing myself a trip to Korea. It was Jwayne, Chromage, Inc, and Heavens_Myst. Inc won the loser bracket and he beat me in the first game, but I won the second. This was a great win for me, nobody expected me to win as Set was totally dominant at the time and I had a secret strat that nobody knew. I placed top 16 in Korea losing to Capoch in second round. (first round was group play, 2 from each group of 5, so just making it out of there was good enough!)


Let’s start from the beginning. Tell us more about the first time you played AOE 3.


I played the demo twice and then quit it, it was too boring. I could wait for the real thing.


After more than one month after his release, do you think that this game feels like a real Age of game? Are you satisfied with the game or  is it a bad surprise for you?


I think it’s great, it feels much more like AOC than it does AOM.


Favorite civilization and why?


Spanish, fast shipments are fun.


Favorite strategy and why?


Jannisary rush then abus?. :D


Favorite map and why?


Yucatan, lots of hunting and treasures with the sea on the sides.


Mercs were a big problem in AOM/TT…What do you think of the new mercenaries in AOE3? And what is your favorite merc unit?


I think the mercs in AOE3 are fun and can be game changing, they are great units but not too great ?


In a general way, what do you think of the balance?


It’s good, except French vills are too strong and ottos are way too good.


Your point of view of ESO2, the online servers?


Much better than ESO1 but they still could have done a much better job.


Are you optimist about AOE3’s future (Tournaments, cash, sponsors, online people…)?


All I can do is hope that AOE3 will be big.


If you could add one feature into the game or change a thing, what would you do and why?


In-game voice communication ability


Opposite way, if you could remove a feature or something?


Remove the native treaties card.


What do you think about the international community? And the French one?


Let us in on your tourneys :D


How long do you play per day (or week)?


I don’t really count the time, heh, maybe 2-4 hours of game time, sometimes none.


What is your opinion about the recorded games feature?


It’s lacking in so many ways, I think ES threw it in in at the end.


Who’s your favorite international player? And French player?


Halen and Salska.


Can you give the us some tips you use while you are playing?


It’s all about the hotkeys and the minimap for me.


Hotkeys are a very important aspect of the game and the speed for a player. Can you tell us how you set upped your hotkeys?


QWERT for all units from all buildings.

SDFHJKTYZXCVBN for buildings. CTRL+ whatever to cycle.

G for TC.


W3 and Starcraft have professional players. What do you think about that progaming aspect of the game? What do you think about the future of that progaming in a general way?


Progaming is advancing like crazy, tournament prizes are skyrocketing, lots of sponsors wanting to get in on the action, if only there was the same for the age series.


Your personal purpose in the next weeks or months in AOE3?


I will strive to be the best I can be.


Little game, word association. I give you a word; you have to tell me quickly another one, just what you think.


AOE 3? Ownage
ES? Polish your game please
Ottomans? OP
French? Vills take steroids
HC concept? cool
Amazonia? ROFL
Skill? Experience
Pgm? Workin on it
Patch? Yes please
Iamgrunt? Do you ever sleep?
Sanctuary? Forum


Final step, do you have something special to say to the crowd?


Imitate then improvise. Copy the pro’s then show them how it’s done.

Ps. I do AOM/AOT/AOE3 Training, email me if you're interested (no it's not free):


Thx a lot, take care.