SEN Zombs: “Being near the top in Valorant doesn’t feel anywhere close to the other games I have played. This is literally the best I could possibly be.”
Jared “Zombs” Gitlin believes he is ready to build a dynasty in VALORANT because this is the game that gives him the most fulfillment.
The disadvantages of having all eyes on you to perform at a top-level every single moment can become stressful. Esports is a fickle community that will make you feel like the most important person in the world only, moments later, to push you down because of one bad tournament. As a result, many talented players who were once at the top fall into whirlwinds of lapsed confidence as they try to regain the magic that has been lost. Yet, for Sentinels Jared “Zombs” Gitlin, it is the community that makes being a professional VALORANT player more exciting than any other job in the world.
Zombs, the FPS King
Throughout his time in esports, Zombs has been a professional player in Overwatch and Apex Legends before making the journey over to VALORANT. No matter the FPS title, Zombs was able to find a way to navigate the troublesome transition into a new game and do it at a top-level.
Yet, in both titles, there was always something missing that kept him from staying in the scene longer.
“Overwatch League was super hard to get into as an American player.” Zombs shares. “I eventually made the transition to Apex because of this and actually made more money than if I were to stay in Overwatch.”
BERLIN, GERMANY - SEPTEMBER 12: Sentinels' Jared "zombs" Gitlin competes at the VALORANT Champions Tour 2021: Stage 3 Masters on September 12, 2021 in Berlin, Germany. (Photo by Colin Young-Wolff/Riot Games)
Unfortunately, Apex’s issue, according to Zombs, was the potential for growth was missing in the game. This lack of growth and inability to have a community kept Zombs from being able to give his full attention to being an Apex pro. As a result, he retired from Apex Legends to make the transition into his third FPS title, VALORANT.
When Zombs made the transition into VALORANT by joining the Sentinels, the team quickly rose to the top of North America. Throughout the beginning phases of VALORANT, Zombs quickly made a name for himself on the most dominant North American team. And when they finally went to their first international LAN, the dominance continued as the Sentinels won VCT Masters Reykjavik.
Troubles at the top
Going into VCT Masters Berlin, the Sentinels were the odds on favorite to win the entire tournament. Instead, they took a fast fall from the top. From hoisting the trophy in Reykjavik to falling out in the quarterfinals to North America’s third seed. And the community perception was not great towards the Sentinels after their first LAN loss.
“There is always a ton of hate after every match for us,” Zombs said.
This is the current situation Zombs currently finds himself in. Going through a career in esports with multiple changes can be tiring for some and while Zombs is no stranger to leaving when things are bad, VALORANT is different.
A feeling like no other
For Zombs, being a VALORANT professional is like no other feeling in the world. While many may point to it being because of the Sentinels’ winning ways, there is more meaning to what makes his current tenure so special.
Sentinels became the champions of VCT Masters Reykjavik and were known as the best team in the world.
“To be honest, I really do not care if I win or lose in most of the games I play. I am already showing that I can play at the top level so losses do not really affect me.” Zombs shared honestly. “The part I enjoy about it all is being able to interact with my community.”
Since joining Sentinels, Zombs' community has grown an insurmountable amount in just a short period of time. Prior to his victory at VCT Masters Reykjavik, Zombs' Twitter following stood around 40k followers. Now, he stands at 180k followers with a growing Twitch community that he can interact with.
Building a dynasty in VALORANT
Now, after spending years as a professional in esports in multiple different titles, Zombs has found his game that he would like to build a legacy in.
“Being near the top in Valorant doesn't feel anywhere close to the other games I have played. This is literally the best I could possibly be.” Zombs said.
After their disappointing finish at VCT Masters Berlin, Zombs and the Sentinels will look to reclaim the title of the best team in the world at VCT Champions. With an international loss under the Sentinels belt, Zombs is ready for a bounce-back in December.
BERLIN, GERMANY - SEPTEMBER 13: Team Sentinels pose on stage after a victory at the VALORANT Champions Tour 2021: Stage 3 Masters on September 13, 2021 in Berlin, Germany. (Photo by Colin Young-Wolff/Riot Games)
“We are just going to keep grinding and show why we are the best team in the world once again,” Zombs concludes.
VALORANT’s main event in 2021 will take place from December 2-12 where 16 teams will compete for the championship title.
12 teams are already qualified while the remaining 4 slots will be decided through Last Chance Qualifiers taking place October 11-17. Stay tuned to Esports.gg for the latest VALORANT news and updates.
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Sage been following esports since high school and has remained a massive fan ever since. When he's not working he likes to work out, knit and overthink things..