At Bandit Gang, the end of the year means the end of year interviews. All members are put to the test one by one about the events of the past year that shaped them. Private as well as business. In these interviews in which no mince of words will be stated, no taboos exist, sometimes harsh words are used and where you get a nice insight into the soul life of the interviewee.
Babyjosus: Heyo Arya, happy holidays to you. I see you are dressed to the occasion. As you might have noticed I start the interview with a simple question that is not always easy for people to answer. So lets begin. How would you reflect on the year 2020?
GhostArya: Honestly, I can’t believe that 2020 is coming to an end. This seems like one of the fastest years ever. My family suffered a great loss at the beginning of the year so the first lockdown to feel very lonely. However, I also got to work on some amazing projects and started streaming and developing our hamster game.
To balance the good stuff happening I unfortunately missed my master’s final exams due to surgery with broken elbow and I decided to quit one of my jobs. All in all, it was a year of huge changes and self-reflection for me. And joining the Gwent community and Bandits were the highlights of the year looking back at it.
BJ: You mentioned masters. What do you study and do you have another shot to make the exam?
GA: I studied addiction science and yes, I still have three more tries because medical reasons don’t count as a failed attempt – luckily! It is actually the first time I have to repeat an exam on uni – kinda stressful.
BJ: I am glad to hear that. And like you said yourself you joined Team Bandit Gang as a streamer for Gwent. This was after you decided to leave Sensual Team. What was your reason to leave Sensual Team and join Team Bandit Gang?
GA: I joined Team Sensual incredibly early on – probably like a month after I started streaming. While the team felt supportive and I met some awesome people there, there was also a noticeable language barrier and after some changes in the team both me and Branca decided to leave.
I would say that members of the Sensual Team are great people who are passionate about gaming, but the aims and direction of the team weren’t a fit for me. Team Bandit felt like home from the start because I already knew many people in the team, which also played major role in deciding what to do after leaving the previous team.
BJ: Its actually not that long ago since you started streaming on Twitch and you have already been on two teams and surpassed 1000 followers during all that. How have you enjoyed it so far and was there a moment in that short period of time that you won’t forget about?
GA: Yes, I have been enjoying streaming so much. Honestly, I think I never felt happier than after streaming. I definitely still remember one of my first streams when I got raided by Moriarty and through him I kind of discovered the Gwent streaming world – I am not gonna lie, I went into streaming quite blindly thinking: “Oh, Gwent is fun and I want to get better at it.” So, when my stream started gaining followers, I was still pretty new to the whole scene, so I am super happy Gwent community is as supportive as it is. And making some real friends – like Branca and Zubeedo for example is something that is also extremely important to me.
BJ: And did you get any better at Gwent?
GA: I hope I did! Reached pro twice which is exactly 2x more than ever before! However, there is a room for improvement for sure.
BJ: I also know that Benny is a big part of your streaming, how did that all started?
GA: Well, we were already working on a hamster game with Jerry when I started streaming. And since I basically push hamsters everywhere and all the time it felt natural to make Benny a part of my stream. Having such a small pet with this big heart helps me when I feel lonely or anxious and the pure and unconditional love these animals can give is something I wish everyone could experience even just for a second when Benny blesses us by showing up on a stream.
BJ: I believe you know a lot of hamster facts and tell them on stream too for channel points. Could you share one of your favorite hamster facts for the people with no channel points?
GA: Hamster teeth never stop growing – that’s why they have to nibble on stuff all the time.
BJ: It all makes sense now. And by the way, when I watched your stream for the first time I noticed your tattoos relatively quick. So just out of curiosity I was wondering if you could tell me something about your tattoos. And if you have any plans to get a new tattoo next year.
GA: Sure! Well, I currently have around 11 tattoos and I unfortunately have an unfinished sleeve on my left arm (covid and surgery make it difficult). So, my plans for now is to finish my whole left arm in 2021 hopefully. The whole theme for the left sleeve is fairy tales – you can see a wolf and Maleficent there already, but I also have a small reference to Beaty and the Beast or my favorite games there. Oh, btw – did you know my other forearm is a Witcher tattoo? 🙂
I am planning on a big back/neck cyber theme tattoo next, but these ideas just must come and feel right. One thing I know is that I won’t be getting another chest tattoo anytime soon – the pain was nearly unbearable, pff. But if you have any more questions about tattoos, I am always happy to answer!
BJ: I had no idea about the Witcher tattoo, what is it?
GA: It is a book version of Triss with the protective barrier spell she uses in Witcher 2 game! You can check it here.
BJ: That looks amazing. I am sure all Triss fans out there are falling in love with it. And is there anything else that you would like to do next year?
GA: I hope to visit Japan next year because we had to reschedule that from this summer and my biggest wish Is to work less and be less stressed. I would love to dedicate more time to Gwent and YouTube and hopefully participate in more tournaments or do more casting.
BJ: Oh Japan, that is a country I would love to visit as well. Have you watched Lost in Translation? Its a movie filmed in Tokyo.
GA: No, I haven’t seen it! Do you recommend it? I might watch it then.
BJ: Yeah definitely, I watched it twice already. Its one of my favorite movies with Scarlett Johansson. Aside of things you want to do next year. Its almost New Year. So do you have any new year’s resolutions?
GA: I usually have several – something small and achievable. For next year I think I will just focus more on things I love.
BJ: That’s a great one! To wrap up the interview. Is there anything you want to say to the reader in anticipation of 2021?
GA: I hope that no matter how your 2020 went, that you can find something that you can learn from and will help you cope with things in 2021 – and also be nice to yourself and others – don’t spam poor Gwent partners with “hurry up” emotes. We know we’re slow.
*GhostArya's Top 10 Cards of 2020
*Arya decided to kick off her top 10 with her number 1 card of 2020.
1. Gezras of Leyda – The ginger boi, although a new addition, has quickly become my favorite card with potential outside ST movement decks.
2. Dracoturtle – It is a chonky card – need I say more?
3. Syanna – A fragile card with ultimate meme potential.
4. Sly Seductress – A great engine that can survive thanks to the shield.
5. Philippa Eilhart – Because stealing is fun.
6. Squirrel – The closest thing Gwent has to a hamster and basically a must-have in all my decks.
7. Hawker Smuggler – For chonky units.
8. Alzur – He is a bit forgotten now, but I had a lot of fun with this card.
9. Freixenet – One of the best card arts for me personally, so he deserved a spot.
10. Cantarella – Bittersweet surprise card, also unpopular one perhaps, but still fun for me to play.