“We almost forfeited the day before” – the University of Central Florida Team on the Genshin Impact University Carnival Qualifiers.

Meet the University of Central Florida, a team that almost didn't qualify for the Genshin Impact University Carnival finals.

“There is definitely added pressure to perform on LAN, but our placement gave us confidence we can win.”

CARSON, President of the University of Central Florida esports club,

How they met

Upon learning about the Genshin Impact University Carnival, roommates and childhood friends, Carson, Paul “Otto” and Steven “TheRogue”, thought “why not?” and registered. 

Team chemistry goes a long way in any team game and this unique Genshin Impact tournament is no different. The friendship between the trio stretches all the way back to elementary school.

Carson met Paul back in elementary school in Palm City, Florida, and the two quickly became friends. Paul did not know much English at the time, but Carson was able to speak basic Chinese and the two hit it off. A couple of years later, in middle school, the pair met Steven.

The trio continued to build their friendship over the years and upon attending college at the University of Central Florida, they decided to room together. When Genshin Impact was released in September 2020, Steven and Paul quickly picked up the game. It wasn’t until July 2021, when Inazuma was released, that Carson picked up the game.

With all three being part of the esports club at the University of Central Florida, registering for the tournament was a no-brainer. 

Carson felt that their long-time friendship would help them succeed in the tournament: “With being friends for so long, our chemistry helped us understand what each of us is good and bad at.”

He went on to describe the roles each team member plays in their trio: “Paul is inherently skilled in the game and Steven has an analytical mind for optimization,” he said. “I would definitely say that I am the weak link in the team, but I am able to keep things on track and make sure we are getting the most out of our practice time.”

"We almost forfeited" - University of Central Florida Team on the Genshin Impact University Carnival Qualifiers

The team definitely felt the pressure going into the first day of qualifiers. Carson stated: “A certain member of our team was feeling a lot of pressure prior to the event that we almost forfeited the day before.”

“One of us could not handle the pressure of competing at the time and thought we would lose horribly because of a lack of practice so why should we even try?”

Carson explained.

Any team would feel the pressure with only one day to prepare for the qualifying event. The Central Florida team only had one day to prepare, due to being busy with school.

The trio continued to practice despite the lack of time and the pressure they were feeling. Carson said, “We were finally able to do a practice run where we landed just under 23 minutes and that gave them enough confidence to play the day out.”

He went on to state that they studied other teams and practiced their own strategies enough to minimize mistakes. 

“With the limited time we had, Paul and Steven were responsible for finding routes while I was studying domains,” Carson said. “We then worked together to find the best comps to use and optimize the running portion.”

They decided to run Xiao and two Kazuha’s for the sprint portion of the event. 

Even despite the lack of time to prepare, the team achieved the third-fastest run with a score of 22:10.11, merely beating out the University of Washington by six seconds. 

The stream's casters watched both schools' runs side-by-side:

Going into the LAN

Being President of the esports club, Carson is no stranger to LAN events. 

He shared that the team did feel the pressure of going to the live LAN environment: “There is definitely added pressure to perform on LAN, but our placement gave us confidence we can win.”

With this confidence, the team also hopes for more time to prepare for the next round of the event. Carson shared that they were looking into more quest-related progression techniques that Rutgers performed in the qualifier. 

Specifically, Rutgers University completed a quest that activated the Wind Tunnels to help them get across terrain quicker.

When asked which school he thought was Central Florida’s biggest opponent, he identified the University of Nevada, Reno: “It was impressive what they were able to do without being able to study any other team.”

As far as the live LAN goes, Carson and the team most look forward to meeting all the teams and the fist-bumping they’ll engage in.

How to Watch University of Central Florida's run in the Genshin Impact University Carnival

The University of Central Florida will be competing in the live finals on Saturday, October 29th starting at 1pm PT. The event will be streamed live on the eFuse Twitch channel.

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