Dubbed the "biggest virtual tournament" the FIFA Interactive World Cup sees millions of player compete to qualify for the grand finale. A total of 20 players who have qualified either from six online seasons or via the six community challenges (plus the previous winner and the host nation champion) compete at the finals for the grand prize of $20,000 as well as the title of being the best FIFA player in the world. Denmark's August Rosenmeier earned the cup after a frantic finale where he fell behind 1-0, but shortly before the break tied the score 1-1, and in the second half he scored a brace to win it 3-1 beating the 20-year-old Englishman David Bytheway. We caught up with Rosenmeier to learn a little more about his road to the cup.
Let me first start by saying congratulations on the great result.
August Rosenmeier: Thank you so much.
Apart from the no doubt satsifactory scoreline, how do you think the game went?
Actually I started to gain a good control of the first ten minutes and play the game as I always do. And also got a great chance. But then my opponent scores at almost the only chance he has in the game at the time, and moves ahead 1-0. I'm still getting the feeling that I can easily get back in the game. And it also turned out I got back to 1-1 fairly quickly. Then it goes quite well and I close the game with some goodies to win 3-1.
The answer to this question might be clear to some readers, but for those of our readers who do not know your background, please let me know why you chose FIFA and not Call of Duty or League of Legends or one of the other eSports games.
I play football in real life, so for me it was a natural choice. I grew up with football, and therefore it interests me more than war games and shooters.
How much training do you need to get in shape for something like this?
Now there are a great many out there who have come out and said that I've trained ten hours a day leading up to the tournament, but it is simply a huge exaggeration. I train 4 to 5 hours per day in the last week prior to a match in the World Cup, but I also have a life with girlfriend, high school, family, and yes ... a life to be taken care of. Then there are days when I do not play. Not only to live my life, but also to clean up a little.
What is it like to suddenly be world renowned eSports player?
Well, that's really cool. Last year I was number five in the world, it was also great, but I've always wanted to take the final step. And it finally succeeded . It is a liberating feeling. And then of course I am proud to be the first Dane who has been world champion.
And then you won $20,000 and met Ronaldo. What was that like?
Jaaah. It was huge. $20,000 is a lot of money at my age, but to meet Ronaldo, who has been one of my favorite players and icons since I was small, it was really big. But this is just a taste of what awaits me. Pelé and Messi are the next people I meet, they have roughly the same status as Ronaldo. So it's cool.
Now I have no doubt that you are a FIFA man, but what do you think of the nearest competitor Pro Evolution Soccer?
(Laughs) My brother plays it a lot actually. I played it even in a period of 2006 to 2008 before I started playing competitive FIFA. It's an okay game. But there is no doubt that I always would choose FIFA, also because there are simply more tournaments here. There are several tournaments and the community is greater.
I also believe that if you are a new player and have never tried either Pro Evo or FIFA, so it will be easier for you to sit down and play FIFA. For me, it also helps that I'm best at FIFA. In fact, I played against England's champion in Pro Evo, but in FIFA: here, I won 10-1. I think there are some peculiar features of Pro Evo, but I feel that FIFA is more realistic, but I'm obviously coloured by being FIFA player.
What of your future plans? Do they involve eSports?
Right now I keep a cool head and enjoy the success. I have a lot of projects going on, including my own website and my Facebook page (August Agger Osen Meier - Ed.). Here I am also almost weekly been booked for matches or lectures, which means I can actually do it as a job on the side of my studies.
I definitely plan to continue having FIFA as a job next to my studies, and then see how much more it can become. Now I need to clear up the future with my current team and prepare myself as some tournaments abroad awaits. And naturally I will look at the offers I get or expect to get.
Do you think it is realistic to expect to make a living in eSport in Denmark?
I do not think I can live on it simply by getting paid by sponsors, but I think you can live on it if you combine lectures and events. And then of course, to win some of them each year. But it also requires good promotion.
Finally, I ask you if you have any tips or tricks to share with Gamereactors readers.
As a FIFA player I can remember what I did to get to the top. Everyone starts somewhere after all. I started up in 2010. I was not very good. But I went to see the best players and asked them for matches. Over and over again. Although I was being stomped. I lost 7-1, 10-1 - I got stomped. But it is about seeing what the good players are doing right and then copy it to your own game. Always play against someone who is better than you. Continue to find players at your own level or above.
Thank you for your advice and your time.