At last! Today we finally publish the answers to the questions you asked Danil "Dendi" Ishutin in Ask Me Anything. There was enormous quantity of questions and various supporting comments. It's great to know that our team has so many devoted fans.
We considered that chosing only 10 questions is unfair and decided to make a small experiment. Specially for the fans of the Born to Win, Dendi agreed to read all the comments and answer the most interesting questions. Unfortunately, due to the busy schedule he didn't manage to do it earlier.
Moreover, Sotrm Studio recently recorded a long interview with Dendi. The player answered many questions of Oleg "prb" Bulavko, related to the team. If you haven't watched the interview, we suggest watching it first and then read his answers to your questions below.
— I'd like to know what it began with. How did it feel to be in the company of strangers, was it hard to discover a basis for mutual understanding?
— It began with my Lviv team (Lviv is Dendi's home town, a very beautiful city in Western Ukraine - translator's note). The guys totally trusted me and listened to me. We even managed to show some results in Ukraine at the time. Later I was invited to WG. The team was very pleasant. The players were very good people: Travka, DkPhobos, Goblak and Axypa. At the time people didn't play Dota for fame or money.
Axypa, Dendi, DkPhobos, Goblak, Travka
— Can criticism of other people get you? Does it influence your game - positively or negatively?
— Any criticism is good to the extent. There's only 0,001 % of criticism is adequate. It is very hard to single it out, but it is very useful. I try to listen attentively to the criticism expressed by my teammates or other players.
— I recently heard from the casters that your favorite hero is Dragon Knight. Why so? If it isn't true, tell me who is your favorite hero. What attracts you in such heroes at Puck, Queen of Pain, Shadow Fiend or Magnus?
— It might've been sarcasm. I don't like DK much, as this hero requires substantial cooperation with the team. In other words he is dependable on team. I prefer creating action myself. Active heroes attract me by endless opportunities. I enjoy improving game on such heroes, as they're rather hard, especially when it comes to pro games.
— About four years ago you were the best midlane player in the whole world. As per moment, you aren't anymore, frandly speaking. Many talented players entered the pro scene. They demonstrate results, better than yours, both in team and solo. What do you think about it? Maybe it's time to give way to the younger generation? Or is it an extra motivation for you? I'd be happy if you share your feelings about it.
— That's a very fun question. If to think about it, people believe in statistics/figures and results. The former is nonsense in team game. The latter is good. About four years ago our team was an absolute top. We defeated everyone. As of now, our team after an enormous quantity of changes tries to rise from its dark era. People usually call the best those players, who play in winner teams, because only in such teams a player can show good figures and statistics people believe in. There're plenty examples of it. One can say that the best players and good results are interrelated. Our team doesn't show good results now, so it's hard to distinguish. It's important to believe that a player is only 20% of the team. As concerns, young players this is nonsense. The same people have been playing in pro team, which take top places all the time. There're only a couple of new players in top teams. Furthermore these guys have played Dota for quite a while. This is rather hard process! Much strengths should be spent to break through.
— Danil, this might be a stupid question, but I'll still answer it. Do you always dance when you hear music? Did you study dancing? You dance so cool! I like it!
— I studied dancing. I dance when nobody sees me ^_^. I enjoy watching professionals in various styles.
— Dania, does esportsman's career impedes creating family. Many people at your age marry and give birth to kids. Do you want it? Would you be able to change career of a doter and showman for your beloved?
— SHOWMAN, ha-ha-ha. It surely impedes! People can't even imagine how much time and efforts is spent in fulfilling the desire to be the best in any area. You have to sacrifice something. I simply don't have time doing it. Though I do have such thoughts. My dear and beloved people are the most important for me. Their health is of top priority and dota career comes after that (laughing).
— Dendi, tell us, which hero of Dota Universe would you like to meet? Which of them would you introduce to XBOCT? Why?
— I'd befriend with Queen of Pain! I'd introduce Sasha to Brewmaster. "Drink beer to gear!!!", as they say.
— Imagine there's no Dota. In another parallel reality, who is Danil Ishutin? A cosmonaut? A barmen? A doctor?
— This is a hard question. Maybe a dancer or a sportsman. Or maybe an actor of cinema or theatre.
— What is your attitude to the influence of analysts and casters on the community's opinion? I mean what was said in analyst studio (by the casters) becomes a mainstream, which is repeated in all the comments and groups. This might be a provocative question, but still…
— My attitude is negative! However it is inevitable. I'd like to wish more professionalism to all of us.
— Danil, what do you think about anime? Do you watch it (name a couple of anime works, if you watch it)?
— I watched Hayao Miyazaki. I liked all his works VERY much! Each of his works is genial! I recommend everyone to watch!
Spirited Away is one of the most known films by Hayao Miyazaki
— Do you like tasty food? Tell us about your most favorite and very interesting dishes from various countries. Can you cook? How good?
— I eat almost everything! I enjoy tasty food! Last time I couldn't eat picked seafood in New York… it tasted as if it was raw, it was frightening ^_^.
— If you were offered to open one of the entry doors to Narnia, Middle-earth, Hogwarts, 7 kingdoms — which one would you choose?
— Middle-earth, 7 kingdoms. I'd break into and pretend I am hobbit.
— Describe your average day. How much time do you spend training, eating, having rest, etc.?
— It depends on the tournament schedule. I can give advice: whatever you do, sleep, eating and physical training schedule is important. You need to take breaks. I don't do it all the time. ^_^. I'm trying to change that.
— For whom do you lay yourself out more — for fans or for coach/staff, etc.? I know how about your attitude to Na`Vi organization. I know how you appreciate what the organization made for you. What differs Na`Vi from other organizations?
— We lay ourselves out surely for the fans and for ourselves. Coach and staff have nothing to do about it. I do not know what differs Na`Vi from others, but I feel comfortable here and I love everyone.
— Tell us what you talked about with Clement during All-Stars Match at TI5?
— We talked about the match and had fun! Nothing more.
See You Again — funny video about Dendi and Puppey
— Dania, do you aim to win one more The International?
— Sure I do! And to defend the title afterwards.
— Tell us how you manage to keep positive all the time. Even after loosing, you stay in positive mood.
— I don't know, where did you get this information. However, as Eugene Erofeev (Na`Vi.Dota 2 manager) says: "GUUUUUUYS, IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO CONTROL EMOTIONS". Well, I get upset too.
— If you ruled the world, what would you do first?
— I'd hire people to spank your ass.
— In your opinion, why did meta influenced TI5 so substantially (I think that picks were more diversified at previous TIs)? Was it due to psychological factor (everyone pick this hero - so do we) or was it because of imbalance?
— Teams are afraid of experimenting at such events. When you don't have right to mistake, you try using your most powerful sides. So teams pick what they deem most stable and effective. They don't try things, which would only in theory be capable of changing everything and work well.
— Does hype or hate in social networking websites or in comments here influence your game?
— Positive feedback influences positively. I feel enormous desire to defeat everyone!
— Playing on quickcasts is more beneficial compared to average ones, though it's only milliseconds. However, you play on classic, as you're used to (I saw it on the streams), which complicates the play on various heroes. Do you plan to retrain to standard QWE, and perhaps on quickcasts too (I know it's hard, as I used to train playing on them and it was uncomfortable, but later I could evaluate the result)? This is the improvement of performance level. Sometimes even 0,1 of millisecond can decide. Though, quickcasts aren't always necessary, but they're worth training. My question concerns all Na`Vi players, since I've noticed that mostly everyone plays "old-style".
— Quickcasts have both advantages and disadvantages. It's cool to have binds to both. However, it takes much time to get used to it and not to mistaken in critical situations. QWER is surely better and more comfortable, but I don't have time to retrain. All the more I don't really feel, that it influenced the game. Fingers are comfortable with it :)
— Describe one of your close friends and what qualities you appreciate him/her for.
— My friends would do everything for me! I am ready to do the same for them.
— What would you wish to the young player for them to achieve their goal and become eSports athletes?
— Patience and tranquility.
— I heard in an interview that you play on mid, only because you can influence the game substantially. However, I think that carry can influence the game more… Would you like to play carry role in Na`Vi?
— In 6.84 Dota became more team game. One player can seldom influence anything.
— Did you ever think of changing your team role to another, e.g. hardlane? If not, can you imagine yourself as a top hardlaner, carry or support?
— I think I'd manage to do it, but it would require time. I don't plan to change the role.
Think about it: would you like to see Dendi playing support?
— Have you ever thought of opening your own facility in Lviv (e.g., a café with Dota style or anything else, which is not connected with Dota)? If you have, give us more details.
— I thought about it, but these were only thoughts.
— Dendi, what can you say about Reborn? Is it a change for better? Are you satisfied with it?
— Everything is fine by me. The changes are only for better!
— How important for you was to feel the presence of your mother at The International? How did she support you? What did she tell you after event?
— Mother's presence in the hall didn't influence the process. I didn't have time for my family and friends during the tournament. However, I'm glad they were at the event and saw it in live. It is very pleasant to obtain such support. When everything finished, it's cool to find myself surrounded by family.
Dendi's family supports him during the championships!
— There's a rule in Dota similar to any sport: you lose motivation, when you win the tournament. You've played about 100 tournaments of various scale. What makes you wake up every new day and give your time to improving your Dota 2 performance?
— It's the love to game and the fans. We played first Dota not because of money or anything else… we love Dota and competing each other!
— Dendi, what is the maximal age of eSports player?
— There's no such thing! It all depends on a person and his desire, time, possibilities. The age doesn't matter, if you spend enough time playing Dota, think a lot about the game and constantly work on the improvement of your performance and team performance. The main reason is change of the interests, family, kids.
— Why did Invoker disappear? This hero provides the greatest quantity of options in the game. If a player has high level of skill, this hero will be the most useful in the map!
— Invoker disappeared, because he's got the smallest damage on the first level and there're no spells to push the line. As of now, any mid-hero of meta will vanish Invoker. Overbuffed monsters come to the mid lane.
These were great times, when we saw Invoker played by Dendi