Mikey Storied, the Rush Gaming "Sensei"


My name is Ulara Nishitani, CEO of a Japanese esports team called Rush Gaming. I do mostly make my living by doing marketing and producing work for brands, but as a main "life" work, I’m running this little esports team, struggling but happily building to grow it bigger.

As a CEO, sometimes it’s real hard to simply thank or praise one staff considering how that affects the organization’s work ethic, but this one is something I just genuinely wanted to write about for a long time.
(Well I do also believe/hope this should help people to understand who I’m like :)

Today I’m writing about a guy, who I met in June 2018.
His name is Mikey, known as “Storied” and also "Story Sensei" in Japan.
This post might sound super fuzzy, and also, to all the English-speaking people, this is written by a Japanese woman who studied in the UK for 2 yrs so some parts also might sound weird. (When you find parts that sound weird, please let me know because I’d love to learn how to write better 🙂

First Experience in the US

We met him online while Rush Gaming, the esports team who competes in Call of Duty in Japan who at that time was the dominant champion in the Japanese CoD scene, was boot-camping in Anaheim. Being the dominant, undefeated champion team in Japan without experiencing what the level is like in the US, we totally underestimated what we could do there.
Soon after we started scrimming (Scrim=practice matches) we realized how ignorant and just weak we were. It was simply shocking and it was just getting worse every day because we were just too weak that not even pros, just “top amateurs” started declining the scrim offers we sent.
In Japan, it was totally the opposite. We used to struggle to find scrim partners who were as good as us in Japan, but in the US, we just were not a good enough deal to take.

By the way, I wanna mention one team here, eUnited. I honestly have the highest respect for eUnited's management team and the players who used to play for the org, specially Clayster.
They accepted our request to do a scrim when we were just a new team coming from Japan, who simply were not even good enough for their practice.

How we met

Back to the Anaheim Bootcamp story.
Even though we could not scrim with the pros like we wished before we came to the US, we were having scrims from 2 pm in the afternoon with 2-3 intense sessions every day, which just was amazing compared to the fact we can only find 1 or max 2 scrims from 9 pm in Japan.
However, it was so hard to figure out what really is different and how we should approach this totally different level of a game by ourselves. The team was in the dark, and I myself is not a CoD player, meaning, just a super useless English speaking CEO who well, yeah maybe does great PR work but… an esports team without an esports solution or useful advice? Then .. yes I felt pretty useless. 

So I started sending messages to people who took our scrims, asking
 “What do you think about Rush Gaming? Can we have some quick advice?”
Imagine getting this in your Twitter DM.
Yeah, normally people do ignore that. 
Honestly speaking I do also ignore a ton of DMs daily too.

So all the Rush players were like
“Come on, nobody will reply to that. Why would they do that? It’s just such a waste of time…”
That’s maybe true. Yes, it does not mean anything to people to voluntarily answer this and give us advice.
So my expectation was low.
Just not completely giving up.

This is when Mikey came in.

He was one of the players who constantly took our scrims on twitter.
We were staying in a close area (west coast side) and maybe the connection wasn’t as bad to scrim, and just maybe better than not doing anything for them. We were outplayed and losing badly every time we scrimmed.

He replied with probably 3 tweets long paragraph about how he thought what our issues were.
(I wish I could show you the screenshot of the actual message,but it’s gone. Twitter does not seem to save all the DM data..)

I was so excited and the boys might have found me super annoying but hey, everyone was super amazed to face how Mikey was breaking down all the important points in the game and how detailed they were.
He even asked us to send our game play video to see exactly how we were playing and how the minimap looked like on our screen and sent us a feedback document.


This is the actual feedback document.

Can you possibly imagine how hopeful I felt that time? I put aside all the work I needed to do and translated this to the Rush Gaming boys, hoping they can learn from it. I probably cried then for having some hopes.

Few days later I saw on Twitter that Mikey and his team had an issue with their org refusing to pay for their upcoming tournament trip fee. It didn’t take me even a second to give a hand.
Honestly speaking I’m normally a careful person. I have never just given people cash especially people who I have not met face to face. But with Mikey, I just was happy to grab some $500 cash in my hand and met him the first time in the venue at CWL Anaheim.

I honestly believe it was the biggest innovation to Japanese CoD scene.
Having even just 1 team, or even player who has experienced how we should approach things, it will eventually spread by others digesting it.

Not only the fact Mikey has been supportive to the team, the fact his advice and coaching was so valuable and meaningful to the team, it led to more and more things later on, such as

GreedZz started thinking and writing like Mikey does
One of the key players started being like Mikey. More focus on the team win and devotes his time on writing what needs to be done as a team

Rush players learning how to run a fast try and error cycle with having a hypothesis first
Before people just play and do things on the fly. Now more with plans first and adjustments with the result.

Huge English learning motivation as people want to learn from Mikey
GreedZz tried so much to translate Mikey’s document, which basically takes 10 times more time than I do, but the hard work is definitely is paying off.
Now Vebra and Gorou are taking a lesson every week to slowly studying a language. (You know how hard it is to start learning when you are so soaked up in gaming)

Japanese esports players realizing the “level” required to be professional
Not only Rush players but also many esports players in Japan are looking up to Mikey for the way he thinks and acts in and outside of the game, which really makes people realize what “professional” is.

We learn from each other.

When I struggle with management, especially when I’m under high pressure and a lot of work and things to worry about, which normally comes from people, one of the things I often do is to look at and remember Mikey’s work.

One of the things is of course about what he does. It is a great inspiration to me, about the timing and how detailed and honest his feedbacks are, which is something not many people can do as a lot of people can do some fuzzy, vague feedbacks to “kind of” make people understand but not anymore. However, giving precise feedback and also in written form is another level of work. 


Another thing I also look up to is actually more about HOW he gives feedback.

One day he asked me,
“hey which feedback did the boys listen more? The soft one or the blunt one.” 
I then gave him the insights from being with the team, who is good at what and how they normally react to things. His feedback style changed one by one, day by day, like really sensitively tweaking the UI of a service. This was even before he was officially a coach for Rush Gaming.

Sometimes, I feel sad that I forget doing the same. Everyone is different, yes I don’t forget this part as it’s damn obvious, but hey. Always keeping that in mind, and yet not giving up to get them improve to win, is just simply, respectful. It’s easy that you think you cannot help, and let the players figure out by themselves.

We all know but it’s extremely hard to execute the things we know.
Some people read many books, watch so many youtube videos about many things like how to coach or how to manage people and have a handful of knowledge, and still cannot do how we wanna do it. 
So what you do, is really, who you are.

Gaming can be a hope.

Through this eSports activity, I truly believe that esports or gaming can be a hope when taken seriously. It ignites people’s heart, pushes them to work hard and can make people supportive and inspire in many different ways. With games, some people can show more, do more, and try more.
Life is hard sometimes, but hopefully, gaming can show more about the good side of human beings and this story, I hope was one of them.

Mikey, the Rush Gaming coach who is only 21 now has taught me more than any other adults or books in the last couple of years, and so do the other players in Rush feel. Everyone in the org has the highest respect to him and it is what he gained over his actions.

Actions tell >>>>>∞ tweets :)

Thank you for reading!

Mikey lives in somewhere close to Palo Alto, learning mechanic engineering.
If anyone is interested to know more about him, I am the one to talk to.




彼とは、Rush Gamingの米国遠征合宿の際に、オンラインで知り合った。
当時のRush Gamingは、正に無敵無敗の日本チャンピオン。まさに満を持してアメリカの地へ降り立った。



















Playing Aggressive vs. Playing PassivePlaying Aggressive vs. Playing Passive 積極的にプレイする事 VS 消極的(受身的)docs.google.com

Rise vs Red Reserve Forest HPVod link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D3MJDNMKDCQ&t=3docs.google.com










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