Hey everyone! Welcome to the first (and hopefully not last) Reim Time! Reim Time is a series that aims to create a look into certain players' uncensored experiences and opinions. I hope you enjoy it!.
The Snowman. Maharishi is one of the oldest and most recognizable names in Zealot Hockey history. A ZH OG, Maha (his affectionately abbreviated nickname) has numerous accolades to his name, as he is a Winter Classic and Clan Tournament winner, as well as a Zealot Hockey League winner. To top it all off, the guy’s a Grand Master on ladder too. There is no debate necessary. Maha is one of the GOAT. Unfortunately his season with the New Folsom Renegades has ended, but let’s take a look back at how we got here.
Q: Hey Maha, I really appreciate you taking the time to answer some questions. It seems like you were around since the very beginning of Zealot Hockey. How did you end up finding the map?
A: Around mid to late december 2013 I just happened to be looking at the "Open Games" tab in the arcade section and saw Zealot Hockey. I thought to myself I like both Zealots and hockey so decided to give it a try. That 1st game I played was so much fun and ever since then I've played Zealot Hockey almost every day. The first few months of playing were some of the greatest times i've had in gaming. The game back then felt so fresh and fun and the few inhouse players we had at the time I'm sure you felt the same way, as we all played together so many hours during those days.
Q: You quickly became one of the best, if not the best skater. How did it feel to hear “the Maha” carry? You seem to have always been humble.
A: It was definitely nice to hear. I spent a lot of time playing Zealot Hockey for the enjoyment of the game and the competition surrounding it, so it was pleasing to me that I was in the top tier of players.
Q: Your Zealot’s white skin was awarded after your victory in the Winter Classic tournament. Would you like to see more competitions besides the ZHL? Or do you think the community has grown too large to handle small-scale brackets like the Winter Classic?
A: The Winter Classic was tons of fun and I think there's definitely room for some organized competition outside of the ZHL. I think some kind of clan tournament/league could be rather exciting. Having players come together and form their own teams as opposed to the drafting system of the ZHL could make for an interesting competition, especially considering the depth in player skill we observe today.
Q: I think its safe to say back in the day BruceCampbell, Kurt and you all fought for that #1 spot. Out of the 3 of you who did you think was the best and why back then?
A: It's pretty safe to say that. I think we all took turns being the best, as the meta/individual talent does evolve over time. I remember back then BruceCampbell was one of the 1st to anticipate his opponent's steal, then plan a re-steal. At the time it was extremely hard to counter; we all just weren't used to that level of foresight, and it was difficult adjusting considering how fast-paced Zealot Hockey is. These days counter-steals and counter-counter-steals are very common in any in-house game.
Q: BruceCampbell has since moved on to Heroes of the Storm and Kurt has taken on more of a support role for his team. What do you owe your continued success to?
A: For me I just love to play the game. I used to play a lot of Star Strikers but eventually I got bored of Strikers. I think Zealot Hockey has some similarities to Strikers which I am drawn to, though I definitely enjoy the pacing of Zealot Hockey over that of Strikers.
Q: You’ve always been very calm and quiet, however in the opening game of ZHL season 1 you had some course words for Kurt and dildo enthusiast. What brought out that anger in you and how often have you bitten your tongue?
A: I think that what dirtyappomat attempted to do displayed his lack of competitive spirit and more importantly was an attempt at manipulating imperfect rules in his favor. It really struck a cord with me, being how this was the 1st season of ZHL and how much I loved playing the game. I usually don't make a fuss about things unless I think it's worth it, and in this case I felt the integrity of the league was being messed with.
Q: Do you remember when you and BurntoMemory first performed the double 1-timer with each other? It looked incredible, but made goalies feel helpless. How do you feel 1-timers effected the game?
A: I'm happy that 1-timers turned out the way they did. In a game with so few mechanics/abilities such as Zealot Hockey, adding even the slightest change can have major affects on gameplay. In the 1-timer's case, I think it greatly enhanced the quality of gameplay. Shoutout to BurntoMemory, a top tier skater from long ago.
Q: The talent pool has grown exponentially, as well as the skill required to compete against the top echelon of players. How have you adjusted to the evolutions of the meta-game?
A: I remember when the game was still young I thought it would be so great if one day there were enough Zealot Hockey players that even a low-level/average inhouse would still be fairly high quality. I never would have imagined that Zealot Hockey would grow as big as it's gotten, and I'm always struggling to stay at the top of players. A few months ago I wasn't able to play Zealot Hockey for about 3 weeks, and had already felt like my skill had gone down compared to the rising skill of other top players. Even today I'm trying to get back into form and perhaps be a contender for that #1 spot again.
Q: As far as changes to the game go, what would you like to see added or taken away?
A: I think the current Zealot Hockey gameplay is phenomenal. I don't think anything should be taken away, but as for being added I think it would be quite difficult coming up with any new major gameplay addition that doesn't upset the outstanding gameplay we have today. That being said, I would be excited to see any additions, as long as we'd be able to test them out first.
Q: My questions now will be more relevant to recent forum activity. In Blitzerg’s ratings he gave htcp/Tom a higher overall than Kurt. Both are great players in their own right, but how do you feel about public tier lists?
A: Kurt and htcp both are capable of competing in any level of Zealot Hockey play. Tom is a player who came into the scene much later than Kurt, and has steadily increased his skill from the times we saw him in probe league till now. I think it's very hard to public tier lists to be accurate because player skill is so subjective, and sometimes a player's skill is more suble than others. Good positional play, for example, is quite subtle compared to to good clicking ability.
Q: Leeroy was considering adding checking into ZH. Would you like to see collision detection between Zealots?
A: I'd be excited to test any kind of addition to zealot hockey, like checking or some sort of collision. It would be difficult to implement without screwing up the quality of gameplay we have today, but perhaps it's possible.
Q: Also, ZotZ is currently performing an investigation on the use of auto clickers in Zealot Hockey. Have you ever-encountered ac’s in a lobby and do you believe measures should be taken so they are not used?
A: I find it hard to tell if anyone is actually using AC. If it's found out that auto clickers are being used, we should first determine if they give an unfair advantage. I'm not entirely sold on the idea that AC makes a player any better, but I think it's possible that with enough practice using AC, it could become an unfair advantage. If it becomes a problem then ZHL/ZHPL rules should ban the use of AC (we'd have to specify banning in-game settings method, 3rd party or both). If a player were caught using AC they'd be banned from playing the rest of the season or something like that.
Q: Last question Maha, thanks for sticking around. Since we are both out of the playoffs do you have any predictions on who will win?
A: The Char Meleons have an impressive starting line-up with LK, zach, carlito, and TK. Carlito has shown great improvement this season and is a big offensive threat. If everyone on that team plays well and doesn't break down defensively in the playoffs then I think the other teams are in big trouble. Shakuras is also looking strong, but I am interested to see how they all perform in playoffs, and if Watermelon can secure his 1st playoff game victory. I'd pick those 2 teams as favorites, but as we know player attendance and server issues are sometimes factors.
Q: Thanks for taking the time to answer these questions Maha. Are there any shout outs to friends, family, or sponsors you would like to make?
A: Shout out to Reimer for all the Zealot Hockey content he's produced. Check out ZH Rewind. Shout outs to WildFire and Clammy.
Hey guys and ProfX! If you enjoyed this and want to see more Zealot Hockey content like it, let me know! Suggest names of players you want interviewed and questions or topics you would like covered next time. As always, thanks for reading and best of luck to all the teams in the ZHL and ZHPL playoffs!
ZH Rewind was a satirical retrospective series I wrote about the beginning of Zealot Hockey and the growth of the scene from my perspective. Here's a link! https://xtosave.wordpress.com/zh-rewind/
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