By France Strenx:

What I am going to tell you right now is how I started and why it is important to never give up, no matter what happens to you. For the people who don't know me, my name is Kévin Baeza, and I am 21 years old playing for team fnatic (

In-game, I'm known as strenx. I don't really know why I have chosen this name to begin with. It could have been derived from the word “strength” as I once said during an interview but I don't even remember exactly. However, I stuck to the name and I have played Quake and I'm willing to replay this game.
When I was nine years old, I started playing Quake and I did not know anything about professional gaming or tournaments. Playing and winning were my two motivations.
I started playing Quake 3 on the patch 1,11. I played 1v1 instagib (rail gun only) for 4 years on dm17. Though, at the same time I was told that a lot of people played Quake with a patch called 1.32 on OSP mod.
I joined some duel servers and the first days were a true nightmare. Indeed, I was being owned by a lot of people. I told them that I would own them with a 1v1 instagib.
I was young and what I did not realize is that in “real games” people used «all weapons». I played duel against some top French players at that time. Some people did not believe that I was a beginner with the rest of the weapons. They thought that I had good potential. Actually, I was really happy about that. When I started playing Quake at the age of 9 my whole life was devoted to that game.
I was told that there were tournaments, and of course, professional players who already had established themselves as “legends of quake”. When I watched eswc ESWC with Sweden fox, Sweden z4muz, Russia LeXeR, Russia polosiaty, Russia unKind, Russia cooller. All these players were untouchable in my eyes. From my standpoint, these guys were legends.
They were impossible to reach and to talk with. I have never managed to catch them and never been able to play them once. I told myself one thing from that moment on: «If I were pro, I would always be there for the others in-game. I would try to talk as much with players and give them advice if they needed”. Because at that time I was not able to talk to pros and play with them, I don't want others to experience the same problem.

After that, I started to discover pickups and started playing capturetheflag with people from the community. But people started to be suspicious about me and they accused me of aliasing. However, it was not really a problem. The real problem, which I at start thought was not a problem at all, was during the time I was started being called a cheater. I was really happy at the beginning because it proved that you are good and you could have a good aim, I was truely happy about it... Maybe I was too young.

Days after days and months after months, I started to react to their insults and to their unremitting kicks. I was young and I always wanted to reply to this. I remember that I started to be banned on pickup more and more often cause people said they did not want to play with/against a cheater. Though, I could not prove it because I was too young to go to a LAN. But thanks to that, I could at least play the top french players at that time. All these guys wanted me to play these pros and they wanted to prove that I cheated. But they never found any proofs. But, deep down in my heart, I was so happy to duel against the best frenchs players in that time. They made fun of me though, owning me +40. I was happy to duel them anyways. Years were gone and I had to stop quake for 1 year in order to end all of this suffering and false accusations. But the reason why I comeback at 14-15 years was because I watched eswc ESWC 2004, and I saw all theses pros. I didn't know their faces but when I saw their nickname, I could imagine them as god, as true gods, and I really wanted to play back. I started to alias their name so I could think I was like them. But things got worse years per years... People kept accusing me of cheating and they made fun of me because the more I was replying, the more it was getting worse, and it lasted 4 years. When you are young and you think only about the game, it is really hard to endure that (I know what I am talking about). And then, I was totally banned from all the french pickups and all french leagues, without any real proofs. From now, I would say it was jealousy. But I would thank them anyways.. why? Because without that I would not be what I am today in esports. Since that moment, I played duel only because it was the only thing I could do. I practiced day and night until I could attend a lan. I wanted to play Quake 4, still my computer was too bad. In 2008, they've put Quake 3 back at ESWC. You can't imagine how happy I was. All the actual duel french players at that time were there (France falcuma, France unity, France linkin). I said that I will win this cup and I will shut all the mouth of everybody that made my life a nightmare (99,99 % of people actually :D). You can guess that everybody was laughing at me, even these players. And the worse thing was that I couldn't have any team to send me on lans, because these people told to the organisations that I was a cheater and it is bad for reputation. My parents sent me on LANS, they paid themselves plus I managed to qualify to the French finals. Webone was the only team that trusted me at that time. I won't explain all this ESWC France tournament, still at the end, I won this cup.... I won it, and for myself, this cup was not only a win but also a win for all these 4 years of pain that I had in game. Thank to this victory, I started to get a name. At Dreamhack Dreamhack Winter 2008, I managed to win Sweden fox into the semi final. The player who was and still is my legend. And I won pretty hardly (+25 each maps). Albeit the organisation that I had did not even pay me the travel, a friend of mine, Sweden Spartie paid me this. But I slept on the floor and I managed to be 2nd afterall. The guys who insulted me started to respect me, but I don't know if it was ass licking and I didn't care. You know, I liked how ridiculous they were haha. The worst thing is that there were people who never admitted that they were wrong.. Sad story, eh? Where I really started to get a name was in ql Quake Live. I began to win almost all the online cups (I won 52 ZOTAC cups, and 18 g-data + a lot of differents online cups). I was called online hero, but it is better than cheater isn't it? I started to play lans again, and was owned during the first ones, then Russia Cooller gave me an important advice that changed all my esports career :
« You have to choose situations when to be aggressive »
I always try to mention it on a interview, not to make fun of him, but to thank him about this. A player that I watched a lot when I was a kid, and at this time I was in the sofa with him during an interview and said my nickname. When you played this game for years and followed theses players since you were a little boy, I can tell you that it was really important for me. He gave me an advice, even if he did not care after that. So to conclude, what I did to be where I am now is simple: Never give up, follow your dreams, never listen to fuckers, cause they will do everything to put you down. They did it for 4 years, I never gave up and here I am, a player from « fnatic »

Being pro gamer is not something easy because you have to face to a lot of insults, jealousy, and they will do everything to prevent you from having your dreams. Some people have luck... having a brother as pro gamer or as a devoted player is much easier.... But I was alone, without any help, and I managed to do it. At least I try to do most of all pro don't do, reply to their fans.

Ps : I will put more blogs in the future, my esports stories, troubles, when I missed the flight three times, or when I slept outside in Dallas!

Here are some videos if you don't know the videos I talked about (I was not angry, no worries):

Strenx 2010:
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Source: Strenx Facebook