On the eve of an important match to be held against the team (monkey) Business, we decided to talk to the manager of our Dota 2 squad Eugene "ugin" Erofeev and publish a short interview specially for the fans of our team.
Ugin answered many questions about the recent changes in the squad, the invitation of PSM and the reasons why it was decided to replace ArtStyle. He also spoke about other topics related to eSports in general.
— Reveal the secret: who else was considered as the fifth player apart from PSM and why was he chosen?
— First, the players were thinking it thoroughly and discussing the necessity of changes in our team. Unfortunately, there were few candidates, less than we wanted. The CIS Dota scene lacks powerful players in general. PSM was chosen almost immediately after the decision to reshuffle had been made.
— Who offered to try playing with PSM? Was it the manager or the players?
— The players.
— In your opinion, does age influence the "authority"? Will Andrew manage to get along with others quicker, since he's 28?
— I think that it is deeds that influence the authority of a person. Usually, people become wiser and more reasonable as they get older. So there's connection between age and authority. However, we make stupid things at any age (smiling). I hope Andrew will succeed. We'll see it in time.
— What has changed in the team after the new captain joined them. Have the training become longer and more frequent? PSM seems to be a very responsible and demanding person, who knows exactly what to request from his teammates.
— It's true. Andrew began performing his duties as a captain actively and purposefully. I don't see any sense in playing more than it is possible. You can not jump above your head, as they say. As per moment, the players are trying to achieve synergy during the trainings and get a new look at the game. Dota is developing and the players understand it. They're trying to find their play.
— ArtStyle was said to have been put under the pressure, which no player had undergone before in the entire history of eSports. Don't you think that community will press the new captain as well? All the more he has never won The International.
— Perhaps. However, in my opinion, that's for good. It is normal, if there's a factor, which doesn't let you relax. I think Vania managed to cope with the pressure. Andrew will manage to do it too. It's natural.
— Which goals are set for the team before the Fall's Major? Is it top3? Or is it simply good level of performance (without achievement of top3)?
— The goals are always the highest. Surely we want to win and to be the best. We want to correspond to our name. We also understand and estimate correctly our current situation. We'll have to put much effort, before showing the result. The first Major is not a goal for us. It's a starting point, after which we'll understand where we are and what we need to do next.
— In which tournaments will Natus Vincere participate before the New Year? How did you take the new Valve's rules, which prohibit the reshuffle before the end of the Major? How will it affect Dota 2 scene?
— We're planning to play at the qualifiers and get to the following tournaments: WCA in China, Nanyang Championships in Singapore, The Summit 4 in the US. We'll participate in D2CL and in Valve's Major. I like what Valve's doing. Perhaps, the rules aren't perfect and need to be improved, but anyway it will positively influence the level of professionalism of players and organizations. It's high time the whole eSports structure should be worked on all the levels.
— Esports are often compared to the traditional sports like football and hockey. However, these disciplines have clear disciplinary rules for the players. Do Dota 2 and CS:GO require the introduction of similar rules? What are they in your opinion?
— I've already said, that it's high time the whole eSports should be worked on all the levels. We're approaching sports and catching up with them very quickly, but we're still far away from that (laughing). This is vast topic, which requires separate study and discussion. Today it's a big business, a show business, if you like it. However, it is not sports, as it is traditionally seen, though the basis is competitive element, which is one of the main criteria in sports. Esports lack right infrastructure.
— The quantity of coaches in CS:GO is increasing, but this trend is not popular in Dota 2. Anyway, Goblak went to the previous The International with the team. Have you ever considered hiring a coach?
— Once again, this question is related to sports. We're thinking about a coach, all the more we have such experience. We won't succeed without a coach in future. CS:GO is more favourable for coaches than Dota 2. The rules of Dota 2 tournaments don't provide an opportunity for a coach to influence the game in official matches. Organizers want everything to depend on the players. As a result Dota 2 coach can't operate in full capacity. There's no sense for players to get used to the coach' advice, as they won't be able to get the advice in official matches. Take any sport: a coach is always and everywhere with his team. A coach is capable of influencing a team and result substantially. A team or an athlete can be lead to champion's title by one coach, while it won't be able to achieve any result guided by another coach. I think the tournament organizers and Valve should think about it thoroughly. However, the main problem of coaching in eSports lies far beyond these rules. The thing is that none of us have achieved correct notion of what an eSports coach is and what he should do.
— Recently CIS community was discussing the blog of v1lat. He stated that while the organization of tournaments is not very profitable, many players require too much, up to personal WCs. What conditions should be provided to the players by tournaments organizers in your opinion?
— I agree that there's obvious imbalance. This issue is partly related to sports. Both in sports and eSports players are the basis. They are the stars, etc. Prominent sportsmen similar to showbusiness stars can require complying with a particular rider. Limousines, personal masseur, a porter, particular floor in a hotel, particular food, etc. This is normal. However, unlike professional sports, in which sportsman has passed a very hard school of forming his personality with a very strict discipline and particular rules, eSportsmen become stars quickly and easily, not putting much effort into it. Simply because they play a game better than others. New games are released, more tournaments are held, the prize pools are growing... If sportsmen suffer "superiority complex", esportsmen are even more vulnerable to it. The organizers would do everything to please the players. It is the players, who will post photos on Instagram and write their opinion about the tournament on social networking websites. The organizers take care about the show in the first hand, but where is it going? I recall a soviet cartoon about the Great Don't-Want (A boy doesn't want to do anything around the house and wishes to get to a place, where he can only be entertained, eat confection and do nothing more. He eventually gets to such place - the country of the Don't-Wanting. He gets everything he's ever dreamt of - non-stop cartoons on many screens, video games, cakes and sweets, a huge theme park... He lies on the bed and is fed and transported on the bad by a robot. Naturally the boy soon gets fed up with it. He meets the Great Don't Want - a giant fat man, who doesn't even move, as a robot makes everything instead of him. The boy runs away from the place only to wake up in his bed and become a different person. If you want to see this piece of ancient animation you are most welcomed to follow the link, knowledge of Russian isn't critical, as you already know the plot
- note from translator).
— You've visited many LAN-tournaments in your career. Which of them was the most remarkable one? Are there global differences between the championships of Dota 2 and CS:GO?
— I did visited many tournaments. I can point out almost all the championships organized by ESL. I also liked the last TI. As concerns the differences between CS:GO and Dota 2, I can point out the audience. There's much cosplay at Dota 2 tournaments, which creates particular atmosphere. There's also different attitude towards the players. CS:GO players are less spoiled, I guess... The other aspects are of the same level.