EHOME documentary 4 of 5

After a really long time (sorry for the wait guys), here’s episode 4 of 5 in the EHOME documentary from 2011. Long-time support for EHOME, current coach of the winning VG side, this episode focuses on 357 and his background into esports.

The other episodes can be found on the Dotaland Youtube channel.

http://twitter.com/Dotaland

LGD i-League S3 winners’ interview excerpts

Watching the on-stage team interview live after LGD wins i-League S3… some interesting questions and answers that I jotted down for fun (not comprehensive).

For Maybe – this is your first title, and it’s not a small title. Right now, you might be the top mid player in China. Compared to other young mids in the West, such as Sumail and RTZ, what do you think of yourself?

Maybe: They’ve got more experience at these big international events than I do. But I will work hard.

For Yao – how did you turn some poor situations in your games around to your advantage in your last few games here at i-League?

Yao: Our lineups tended more towards mid-late game stability, while the other teams favored early-mid game aggression lineups. We held out and won that way. Also, our coach would tell us, don’t give up even if you fall behind, don’t
get careless against any opponent. He put a lot of words in our minds.

For Maybe – What was your experience with CDEC like? It seems like your time there really helped you out.

Maybe: My time at CDEC felt like a springboard to the real professional scene. When I first started out, I actually knew nothing about how things worked as a pro. But after a year of that I figured a lot of things out. Then when I joined LGD, I still wasn’t immediately a part of everything, it still took some time. But I learned that it is very important to figure out how to work out with your teammates and learn how to be in a team.

For xiao8 – Who do you think will make it through the China qualifiers?

xiao8: My predictions might not be accurate, but personally I favor EHOME and HGT

For Maybe – What is your favorite mid hero at the moment? And which is your best?

Maybe: Shadow Fiend, Storm Spirit. Because these two heroes just feel strong.
And everyone likes them. And I like them too, so I practice hard with them,
and I play alright with them.

For Yao – Two games out of three you guys had Bristleback. I’d like to ask you to compare your Bristleback versus Maybe’s.

Yao: My BB is mainly about creating space in early game, and stacking stuff for Maybe. Maybe’s is more about later dps as a core.

Supplementary question – In one game your BB was relegated to stacking creeps forĀ Maybe. What was that about?

Yao: Maybe told me he wouldn’t give me the Empower later on if I didn’t stack for him. So I did it. And he also let me get some experience and gold in his lane while he cleared the stacks. So it was a transaction!

For xiao8 – talk a bit about the coach for your team?

xiao8: Coach does a lot for us, especially in helping make emotional adjustments individually.

For xiao8 – Yesterday you were defeated 2-1 by VG, yet today won 3-0. How/why?

xiao8: Honestly yesterday we played poorly, otherwise we could have won then. Today we made the necessary changes and turned things around.

For MMY – I heard you got a girlfriend recently. How did you meet? Has she come here to support you?

MMY: I tricked her into being my girlfriend through the internet. But she’s not here. The girl here is the coach’s girlfriend (jokes – coach has trouble with women but is working hard on improving that)

Supplementary: Yao says the coach told them to play well at this i-League to impress the girl for him. The goal set was to at least make it to finals.

For Yao – Your thoughts on Team MY?

Yao: They are a very respectable, strong team. They’ve got some veterans. We’ve learned a lot from them and they’ve learned from us over the years. They’ve always had that signature SEA style, aggressive.

Question from chat – for xiao8 – what’s the word on xiaoxiao8?

xiao8: Uh… this is secret for now. But I’ve been away on competitions for a long time now, so with my wife I haven’t actually even talked much for half a month.

Question from chat for Sylar – you single?

Sylar: Uhm… Right now I’m single. [host adds: Sylar rejected a beauty at a
competition a few weeks ago]

The Summit 3 in my view

After having gone to The Summit 1 last year prior to TI4, it seemed fitting that this year, somewhat before TI5 I’d find myself at the third iteration of the event: The Summit 3. I mean, there aren’t many other parallels on paper… the teams are all vastly different, the participants quite different, and even the tournament itself very different – in good ways, but more on that later (EE also had a good writeup to a similar effect here). Even as things changed so much after TI4, a lot of things remain the same. Everything… and everyone, felt familiar and real.

So here’s TS3 in my view. Who will even read this after my having been inactive here so long? No matter, I just want to get thoughts on paper again…

May 12 2015

Tiffany (the gf) and I flew out bright and early on May 12, the day that BTS had scheduled as their media day. I’d be needed to help with that, where they were to shoot some fun promo video bits, along with interviews. Having tagged along with me to various events in the past, often helping teams out as a friend when I was busy elsewhere, I think BTS made a good call in having her come along too given the three Chinese teams being present meant that there would be times where just having me may not be enough. I may be biased but this was by far not the only good call BTS made – TS3 ended up being one of the most organized and generally best events I’ve been at. Anyway…

Upon landing at the Ontario airport, we walked out to find a person gesticulating wildly at us through the windshield of a van. “Remember me?!?” he’d half shout, half laugh through the open window. I remember you SirActionSlacks, you’re the guy

Buggatis and stuff

that almost died of dehydration while interviewing people after the last day of TI4. Well, that’s not all you’re known for but I remember anyway. A short car ride later, we were again at the top secret BTS lair, where things were already in full swing in preparation for TS3.

credits to BTS flickr

Interviews were done, laughs were had, and somehow things felt like they’d never changed. I felt like I got back into the rhythm of things fairly quickly… Perhaps it is because of the casual atmosphere of the various Summits, perhaps it is players becoming more carefree, but when the BTS guys told the Chinese players to goof it up on camera — many of them were very receptive. Even players who traditionally project a very serious outward appearance such as BurNIng, xiao8, and Sylar got in on it. Even MMY — who is renowned for being awkward on camera — played along. This alone is an achievement of TS that I have not seen any other tournament manage.

Around noon, having a break in the action, I grabbed some food and joined VG on the couch in the fun stream room. Knowing that they counted many football (soccer) fans amongst their midst, I put on the Champions League semi-final matchup between Bayern and Barcelona. Support for the two teams seemed roughly split, even as old man 357 went on tangents about Batistuta and Rui Costa: “Where’s Rui Costa? Batistuta would have scored that!” accompanied by Hao and the VG manager JaL laughing at him.

VG watching FCB vs FCB

SSDs for everyone

There was some other stuff that happened on the pre-tournament day – BTS covered their bases in having everyone fill out tax and payment forms. For LGD, xiao8 took care of all their team’s stuff like the captain that he is, while Maybe had questions about everything (but not in a bad way). Afterwards, teams got scheduled time on the practice rooms and PCs, while teams with no scheduled time either went back to the hotel for the practice room there, or in the case of VG went to a nearby LAN cafe.

May 13 2015

This was the first match day of TS3. The day before, there had been a Hotbid interview with Super of VG with iceiceice doing the ‘translations’. Needless to say, certain meanings were distorted purposefully, and they enlisted my help to make subtitles to reflect the true meanings. That was fun.

On this first match day, VG registered – for lack of a better word – two fairly casual victories. They’d win their games, come out looking not too fussed, and then head downstairs to get food and play Pro Evo Soccer on the fun stream. There was an interview with Hao, always happy to talk and share his thoughts, and there was an interview with Fenrir who has come a long way from his early days of declining interviews back at D2L in January 2014. A long time ago, but not so long ago either… After his interview, Fenrir looked at me, and proudly went, “That was a pretty good one, eh!? I gave lots of good answers and stuff.”

At some point today the other Champions League matchup between Real Madrid and Juventus went down: Fy seems to be a Real Madrid fan, and more specifically perhaps, a Luka Modric fan as he’d asked about whether Modric was playing for Real Madrid and seemed a bit disappointed when told that he was out injured.

When dinner arrives for the night, Hao quickly returns with food, sits down and declares “This chicken is so fucking good!” in front of the 14-odd thousand viewers who are all tuned in to watching VG eat. After most of the day was over, VG decided to play poker in the fun stream room. Half of the stream seemed to be up in arms over this as it wasn’t their idea of fun (I hold no opinions on this matter). I attempted to interact with the BTS2 stream chat somewhat, to varying effect. Either way, it was fun for me as I’m not actually a twitch chat regular and don’t even have a twitch account. So to anyone on that chat: I had a good time, hope you guys all did too!

Later that night, I get word from iG that someone on their team is sick. It turns out it’s Luo, so with the help of BTS peeps I go about gathering some cold medicine and vitamins from the BTS house to bring back for him. Finding iG at the hotel, Faith and ChuaN immediately notice me and say hi. I hand them the medicine, and more concerned with making sure they know to relay the correct medical advice along, I go into the directions for how to take the each different item. Faith cheerfully repeats what I’ve told them and I’m satisfied that the information has been successfully relayed. Ferrari appears from the hotel practice room, notices my Wintersun shirt and wonders what it is.

credit to BTS flickr

The night is late so we all head together to the elevator. In the elevator, ChuaN bursts out laughing at BurNIng as he sees the picture from earlier of BurNIng grinning like a madman. BurNIng tries to explain himself, “they were doing all kinds of dumb stuff in that room so I laughed and got caught on camera, it’s not what it looks like!” But ChuaN is having none of it as he laughs his way out of the elevator and all the way to their rooms.

May 14 2015

Hao and the Newbee boss at an NBA game

Day two of TS3 matches brought a more serious atmosphere, as teams hunkered down into the competitive tension. The exception here being VG, as they would have multiple days between their appearance on day one of the event until their next match. Taking advantage of the lull in activity, Hao went with the Newbee boss (son of one of the richest dudes in China) to an NBA playoff match. Watching the actual match later, I tried to keep an eye out for them but someone else got a much better cap of them in sideline seats. Some people wondered how Hao got there – the Newbee boss arrived at the BTS house around 4pm (in a Rolls Royce) and took Hao with him through the LA traffic.

Throughout the duration of the event, there was a team from the GQ magazine on-scene filming stuff for what they told me would be an online feature into the world of competitive gaming. For this purpose, I tried to spend some time talking to them about the Chinese side of things along with just sharing some general information and advocate for Dota some, so to speak. They actually put me on camera and filmed me talking to them a bit about Chinese Dota, and since LGD was in the house that day they asked some questions about LGD.

LGD-Gaming

I wonder if that’ll make it into the feature, but it was interesting nonetheless that GQ would send a team to film for multiple days to get a story on esports. Pretty cool; I’m looking forward to see what they make of it. We did suggest to them to get Fy for a photoshoot because it’s GQ, and this is Fy, but I don’t know how that went. :P

Around this time is also when I first discover the wonder that is Gang Beasts. Somehow I end up dominating everyone else at this game, which is interesting because I’ve literally never played the game before. It’s a hilarious game though.

May 15 2015

1v1 CS:GO

The first half of the day was rather laid back, as LGD and iG successively showed up at the house to prepare for their matches on the day. LGD hung around in the fun stream and out back on the patio, as the weather had finally gotten a bit better (it had been raining the past few days), while iG went upstairs to the practice room. They were spread around the room relaxing: ChuaN watching the games and joking around with people, BurNIng playing pubs, and Ferrari_430 casually challenging S4 to a 1v1 in CS:GO.

S4 asks, “What’s your rank?” And Ferrari’s response was that he had no rank, he’s never played ranked. S4 laughs a bit, because apparently S4 is really good at CS:GO. We all expected Ferrari to get rekt but he held his own, at least partially due to S4 going easy on him. The highlight of the 1v1 came when S4 jumped down from the area above the CT spawn (is it called the catwalk? Or A-short? I only know these nicknames in Chinese…) while Ferrari was below and knifed him for the kill midair. The whole room exploded in cheers at that point, but ultimately Ferrari_430 held his own and only lost by a couple kills.

People were passing around a notepad having pros draw their favorite heroes. I came across BurNIng struggling to draw not Anti-mage, but Faceless Void, which I think he chose because it was slightly easier to draw. Ferrari specifically looked up an ‘easy version’ of Shadow Fiend and practically traced it off the screen, while ChuaN spent many minutes researching his ideal Rubick look and had it ready on his phone for when the notepad finally came his way. His Rubick thus was one of the more impressive drawings of the day, and he even asked for green pen to color in the green highlights of Rubick, but was unfortunately denied as there was no green pen handy anywhere.

Later on today iG was eliminated. I think. I’m pretty sure it was this day. One truth of working at events is that you hardly have any time or energy to really sit down and watch games and follow the tournament as a fan might. Sometimes, when you finally have some downtime you just want to relax and not stare at a game. Anyway, I think iG was eliminated on this day, by LGD I believe it was. After losing, iG were in no real mood to hang out and left the house in record time — understandable as despite The Summit’s casual approach, the competition is serious and so is the prize money and glory on the line.

Blurry practice room look

In the evening word gets to me that iG wants to reschedule their flights and leave LA early, to which I tell them that it’ll cost probably hundreds of dollars each, and they would essentially only be leaving a day or so earlier. Despite their bugattis and whatnot, a couple hundred dollars is still money and while these guys see handsome salaries and steady prize money, I’ve never known a Chinese player to be wasteful and so they ended up staying for the original duration. By the time I encountered some of them back at the hotel again this night, their spirits seemed to be much recovered and Faith brightly confirmed again to me that they would indeed not be leaving early. My next order of business was to try and convince some of them to try their hand at casting or otherwise hanging out at the house, and I spent a good hour or two on this. ChuaN said “I’ll cast if BurNIng casts with me,” but BurNIng got away without doing it and in the end ChuaN would come hang out and cast the next day anyway.

May 16 2015

I don’t know how he always sits like this

The competition is really starting to heat up and people are actually watching the games in the fun stream room. Watching EG vs LGD, VG’s guys talk about Aui_2000, “His carry was really good, and he was really good on that D-team… Dignitas? And that PotM team he was on was good too!” Then game 2 comes and ChuaN has arrived. Sitting down with everyone else, including the LGD manager and coach, we witness LGD buying back somewhat haphazardly and ChuaN nods in understanding, “I can relate. By the time it gets to this point, you just can’t stay calm anymore, you just have to buyback!!”

In the end LGD loses to EG and that’s the end of their Summit 3 journey.

Watching…

Sometime during this day we’ve introduced VG’s Fenrir and Hao to the wonder that is Crossy Road. Some of these guys are really into mobile games as a time filler (which makes sense since they are constantly on the move). Somehow this particular game caught their attention especially, and Fenrir and Hao spent at least an hour competing with each other. They both got near 200, but I think Fenrir did better. As Fenrir plays the game he makes sound effects for his chicken crossing the road, declaring as he dies a hundredth time “I’d rather jump in the water than watch my little guy get hit by a truck!!” Moral victories, I suppose.

And then it’s time for VG versus Secret, and they go with their team back out on the patio to discuss their approach for the matchup.

Aui won but had to go so forfeited his next round

VG versus Secret would see the result of ChuaN volunteering himself to join a cast on stream. A bilingual cast for an international game. It went alright, I guess. I’m under no illusions that it was unanimously loved, nor do I think it was executed perfectly, but it was pretty cool just because of what it was. I wrote out some of my thoughts on the general matter on reddit here if you’re interested.

Later on in the evening there was the Smash Bros tournament, but by that time most players are gone or leaving and everyone left at the house is running on fumes. I win one match as Game and Watch then lost the next round to the eventual champion, and I’m ready to call it a night too.

May 17 2015

This is the last day of the tournament, and just as things are reaching a crescendo you’re also becoming acutely aware that, well, this is it — the finals are coming. Win or go home, and… go home anyway. Because the tournament is drawing to a close. Everyone always has a good time at Summits, and even though VG loses to EG and ends their tournament third in what can be considered an upset, spirits seem to remain relatively high. They spend a solid two hours discussing as a team in the back patio but then they’re back in the house, hanging out upstairs in the practice room. Iceiceice and 357 set up to play some pubs together, even BurNIng shows up and hangs out for a while.

Secret win woooo

It’s almost like the grand finals are a sideshow, and perhaps to a great many of the players at this point it is. I get the last open seat in the room, and it’s next to FATA, who has his desktop background repeating an image of some dude. When I ask him who it is, I learn from him the “legend of kebap”. Later on Puppey comes and sees the desktop as well and for a few minutes it is kebap story time – apparently he was a player on mTw and loved cheese. Or something.

Iceiceice is playing Doom and has eaten the new rock golem creep, which causes mini versions of Doom to spawn whenever he dies. Every time he dies, he laughs like a maniac while trying to throw rocks at the enemies with the mini Dooms. BurNIng’s in the corner pubbing, but when I go look closer, he’s streaming… And he’s streaming on ZhanqiTV, and it’s lagging, and he’s constantly trying to make it less laggy but in the end it never really improves. We get him and some of the VG guys some In-N-Out, then BurNIng weighs himself on the scale in the bathroom and apparently he’s only 65 kg.

first time Super ever smiled

Fenrir, Fy, and Super hang out with us a bit and we chatter for a while. We talk about life and stuff… it was kinda deep. Then they want to go, but Fenrir keeps chatting, and Fy just stands there kind of blankly. He says, “I thought you guys were having a good time chatting so I was just gonna wait.” But we let them go, but not before I get a picture.

At some point Secret wins and the after party starts. Certain individuals get drunk and stumble around dangerously, doors are torn off walls, more people are on the floor than not at certain points in time.

see you

SmAsH smashing us all

After sending them off, I come back inside and there’s an impromptu game of Smash 64 going on. Except it’s not really a game, because it’s a massacre, and the massacre is coming at the hands of SmAsH of Not Today. Somehow I think we may have figured out the origins of his ID… Anyway, he’s coming out of a 4 player FFA with 3 out of 4 lives intact and 8 KOs on average per round. I try to 1v1 him after the others give up, the best I get is down to his last stock but it’s clear he is an excellent Smash 64 player, the best in the house, and he’s done it all with a giant grin on his face.

As the chaos swirls around us, BurNIng makes to leave in the night. He goes to find LD to express his thanks and bid farewell, then he’s off too. I go back upstairs to watch iceiceice play his pubs, and PPD comes over. He’s a funny dude when he wants to be and briefly sarcastically commentates on SumaiL’s pub game from over his shoulder. He also notes to iceiceice that “I was surprised when we beat you guys” and everyone just generally hangs out and exchanges pleasantries in a way that a shared interest allows. I find Kuroky and Zai at some point and say hi, then bye, because it’s getting quite late…

Eventually it’s sufficiently late that I feel like I should go too, and I run around the house trying to find and bid farewell to everyone I can, the BTS guys and gals, the people running camera and sound (for some of whom this is their first esports event), other personalities and whatnot, players… but I’m sure I still missed people. Regardless, this is a big thank you to everyone at the event and everyone working tirelessly to make the event what it is.

Thanks lastly again to BTS for having me here. As I mentioned in the short mini interview Toffees did with me on stream, it’s a privilege, and it’s always been a privilege, to be able to see all this at the ground level over the years and actually be a part of it too.

You can follow Dotaland on Twitter for occasional updates: twitter.com/Dotaland

Chinese transfer deadline roundup

The Chinese ACE organization had previously announced that August 26 would be the transfer deadline for this summer’s post-TI roster shuffles. Following various big name players retiring, the shuffle would undoubtedly be on a large scale. Today, the various clubs and players have been revealing their plans for the next few months to a year… Here is a somewhat comprehensive look at the main movers.

iG roster changes:

YYF retires. We wish him success in his future endeavours, and thank him for the unforgettable memories that he brought to iG fans.
Faith transfers to LGD. Thank you to Faith’s hard work with iG, and good luck in his new environments.
Chisbug returns to competitive play, re-joining iG. As an iG veteran, let us look forward to his new performances with iG.Former VG player June (previously CIS, but VG bought the entirety of CIS following TI4) joins iG on a trial basis. We hope that as a young player, June can quickly blend in with iG.
Ferrari_430, ChuaN, and Luo continue playing for iG.
iG roster: Ferrari_430, ChuaN, Luo, CHisbug, June

LGD roster changes:

DD retires following LGD’s fifth place finish at TI4.
xiaotuji transfers and joins NewBee. Thank you to these two for their contributions to the club, and we wish them good luck in their new beginnings.
Captain Yao, ddc, and Lin remain with the club; thank you to them for remaining and continuing the LGD tradition!
Former VG player Sylar joins for 300k RMB. We hope that the returning Sylar continues his steady play and leads LGD to a new era of glory!
Former DK player MMY joins for 400k RMB. We hope that he can perform even more brilliantly in a new environment!
Former iG player Faith joins for 300k RMB. We hope that Faith’s joining can bring LGD a new element of strategic thought!
Former VG player (due to CIS having been bought by VG following TI4) inflame joins for 100k RMB. We look forward to this young player growing to become a pillar of Chinese Dota 2!
Former DT player Injuly joins as a free agent. We look forward to Injuly continuing his dreams from DT and challenging himself to new heights!
Coach 820 will pursue his own goals and development and will thus leave his role sa coach. Thank you to his help and leadership towards the team, and good luck to him in his new field!

LGD roster: Yao (captain), ddc, Lin, Sylar, MMY, Faith, Injuly, inflame

Newbee roster changes:

xiaotuji joins Newbee for 800k RMB following negotiations with LGD.

DK roster changes:

BurNIng and LaNm retire. BurNIng will remain at the club for the purposes of helping newcomers.
Mushi due to personal reasons chooses to return to Malaysia to develop.
MMY transfers to LGD.
iceiceice transfers to VG.
Thank you to these people for all their contributions to the club, and we wish them success in whatever their new fields or teams.
DK Dota 2 will not cease existing. We will focus on training new players. If you have interest, skill, and passion, then feel free to send your credentials along to us.

VG:

Former CIS player Black^ joins. Sylar transfers to LGD.
rOtK retires, iceiceice joins from DK.

Other of interest:

Xtt leaves HGT, joins NE
Icy leaves LGD, joins HGT
Zhou, YYF, 820, LongDD, and zippO form a casual team by the name of OB, sponsored partially by TongFu.Wanzhou

 

The Emperor and the King bid farewell

BurNIng has been referred to, at various times and in various contexts, with nicknames such as “Universe B”, “Emperor B”, “B-God”, and so on — all in respect to his status as perhaps the single most legendary player and carry of the Dota and Dota 2 scene.

rOtK’s ID, in his own explanation, stands for ‘Return of the king’. His loudness and charisma has indeed solidified his image as a dominant personality and force in the scene, one with the ability to dictate not only his own team’s tempo, but the emotions of those around him too.

The Emperor and the King have ascended from their terrestrial roles as competitors into the pantheon of Dota — today, these two important figures announced their respective retirements from professional competition in Dota 2 within a minute of each other. And the stage grows a bit emptier, or perhaps it opens up space for the next rulers of the scene.

Their retirement announcements are translated below, with care –

BurNIng’s announcement:

“For me, today is an important day. I’ve decided to bid farewell to the professional scene, and end my professional competing career.

Seven years of Dota, six years of professional play. Going through countless version changes, I’ve been very lucky to be able to come into and become part of it all. It has taken me along the path of a professional esports competitor, and allowed me to achieve countless honors and glories, fulfilling one goal after another. Dreams are destined to be the luxuries of the few, and even now some past results leave me with remorse. Remember who you were when you first set out, and you will find yourself successful in what you desire. All along this journey, I’ve only striven for a clear conscience and no regrets.

What there is more of, is thankfulness. First of all I must thank Dota, it brought me up onto this magical stage, allowing the introverted me another way of expressing myself. Next I must thank those teammates who have fought alongside me, and the opponents who have driven me to continue improving. Without you all, I would not be who I am today. Lastly I want to thank the fans and friends who have watched me and supported me all this time, your encouragement gave me confidence, your criticisms helped me grow.

Today my Dota competing career has come to an end, and I hope this is only a pause and not a full stop. No matter how much I am reluctant for this day to come, it has still come. Just like in that question they asked me last year, ‘What has your youth been?’ My answer at the time was, ‘My youth has been Dota.’ Now, it’s as if my youth has been taken away alongside this retirement, but nothing can take away those shining memories carved into the lifelong recollections of my heart.

After retiring, I will continue to be active in and around this scene. Early plans are to stay with the club and help train new talents, using my accumulated experience and methods to help them mature. I will also partner with rOtK to commentate, as well as attend some offline events to interact with everyone. I hope those interested will come support.”

rOtK’s announcement:

“Through a period of consideration, I’ve decided to retire. Perhaps it has been the four or five years of competition, my body has shown some signs of wear and desires a period of rest. Three years with DK; joy, success, and loss, have all been imprinted upon the path of my youth. In the one year with VG I felt that I matured quite a bit, I’ve been more able to assume responsibilities. Thank you to the club and my teammates for your confidence in me, you will always be the best! The second of my only two sons (Sylar) has finally had the chance to fight with me for a year, there is nothing else to regret. Super has been a teammate for four or five years now, we need not say much between ourselves, and I will never have truly left you. What we said before whilst drinking, ‘Wherever you are, I am there as well.’ Sylar, your drinking ability is so low. We haven’t exchanged much in terms of heart to heart talks, but what has been, has been enough. In many things I can only say that I’ve tried my best, there’s nothing else I can do. No matter what, though, I wish everyone happiness in the future, because that is most important.

I also want to thank our big Dota academy (joke referring to a previous rOtK appearance at a university where he gave a talk on Dota), I still have many classmates, and I hope that you all will accomplish your goals in life. In the future if someone asks me, I will say I graduated from the Dota Academy, and I am proud of it!

Even though it has only been one year, but I will still never forget our VG five-man group. The strongest newcomer for the future, a future Rubick fun-name competitor, what you need is a tranquil heart, and more experience. The most professional and hardworking five-position Fenrir, you are the Ah-K of my heart (I believe this is referring to Hongo Kanata, who bears some resemblance), every victory cannot be separated from your selfless play and sacrifice. Strongest mid player in the world, second to none, you have a hero pool worthy of fun-names beyond mention. Morphling’s fun-name contender Sylar, steadiness is your longstanding style, I hope that you can bear more responsibility in the future, and play more aggressively. IamHunter (VG CEO), JaL (VG team lead), 357 (VG coach), and everyone at the club I send my wishes for you all to have smooth success in the future.

And all my teammates from the past, MMY, longDD, zippO, 357, and many many more, thank you for the understanding you have shown me and my weaknesses, thank you.

This one year at VG has been very happy, and it has gone by in a very fulfilling way. From our first international title, to our lows, to our unstoppable force at TI4… I won’t say more, because tears would come.

Whether it is my unwavering support of my teammates, or my fiery passion for Dota, I am still the same me as before ^_^

After retiring, I will team up with BurNIng to commentate, and I will go to some offline events to interact with everyone. Those interested can look out for these and come to support, and it’s possible that we will still form a fun team in the future to play and keep ourselves busy. There are also many more surprises, so please look forward.

For example, “Hello everyone we are BB, I am xB (rOtK), I am BurNIng (big B),” will you all watch a show where we are the hosts?

I will focus my energies on promoting esports, so esports can truly become hot!

Lastly I want to thank all those who have supported esports, loved esports. You have accompanied me on my career path, allowed me to have more confidence, and brought more excitement to my journey. Now that I’ve retired, I will have more time, so I will frequently organize in-houses and groups to play together in my fan club, keep fighting!”

xiao8 post-TI4 short interview

Chinese Electronic Athletics Magazine spoke briefly with xiao8 recently, where the TI4 champion confirmed that he’d back and revealed some of his plans for his temporary retirement.

CEA: Previously you expressed that you’d be temporarily retiring, so does this mean that you still have plans to make a come back?
xiao8: This is for sure, I really enjoy the life of a professional player, retiring for now is only because I need some time to sort out my own familial things.

CEA: As the Newbee captain, your leave of absence will certainly affect the team. Has the team already confirmed a replacement for you? And will you be returning to Newbee after your retirement?
xiao8: For my replacement I will help them brainstorm, and as for specific targets I’m not able to reveal for now. And when I’ll be back, I still haven’t planned this out yet.

CEA: You mentioned needing to sort out family things, do you mean your marriage with Zhao Jie?
xiao8: Yes, mainly I want to spend more time with my wife, and then there’s the whole marriage arrangements, plus I want to rest a bit, and consider having a kid.

CEA: If you return after becoming a father, won’t the pressure on your back be even greater?
xiao8: Whenever I feel that I am able to handle this well, is when I will make my return.

CEA: Regarding your marriage, any news? When is the reception?
xiao8: We’ve tentatively set it for around October.

CEA: Earlier you’d mentioned that during your retirement, you might consider forming an online team to play in some small tournaments, what were your thoughts in this?
xiao8: One aspect is to find something for me to do, because for me to completely not compete, once I watch a competition, I will feel the itch. And another aspect is this can help bring up some newcomers for Dota 2.

CEA: Speaking of newcomers, following TI4, many veteran players have chosen to retire, yet outstanding new players seem to have been rare to emerge. Do you think this will ultimately cause the Chinese Dota 2 scene to see a break in talent?
xiao8: I think not, because right now every team’s talent level and roster is pretty good, so I think there won’t be such a situation.

CEA: If we say that up to this point, this has been one phase of your career, then would it be fair to say that you now have no regrets in this phase of your career?
xiao8: Indeed, to be able to raise the TI4 Aegis with my teammates, nothing else is missing.

CEA: Lastly, say something to all the fans who support you.
xiao8: Thank you to the friends who have supported me all along, I will definitely not let you down.

Source: http://user.qzone.qq.com/1095789385/blog/1407551706
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LaNm post-TI4 short interview

China Electronic Athletics Magazine recently did a short interview with LaNm, the recently-retired DK support player and long-time veteran of the scene.

CEA: Since joining DK, your performances have been quite good, so why would you decided to retire now?
LaNm: I actually decided long ago on retirement. As for the reasons for retiring, the reasons are many, and in the memoir I am currently writing, I will share the specifics.

CEA: Speaking of DK, rumor has it that one of your conditions for joining DK last year was for BurNIng to agree to fight another year?
LaNm: Yes, as a professional player not having played alongside BurNIng up til then would have been a regret.

CEA: Let’s look back at this past year with DK then. From your sweep of Chinese and international teams in the beginning, to the undefeated championship victory at SL9, to ultimately falling into poor form, and finally your unfortunate exit from TI4… Will there be lots of regrets?
LaNm: There will definitely be, life can never be that smooth. But I’ve already emerged from the shadows of defeat, and this year’s competition has held huge meaning for my life.

CEA: Before TI4 began, your team was favored by a large amount of fans, yet you were sadly eliminated in the end. What do you think were the reasons for this loss? Form? The game version? Changing game tempos?
LaNm: Mentality.

CEA: Can you speak more specifically?
LaNm: Very complicated, I will talk about it in my memoir.

CEA: Many players choose to stream or commentate after retiring, yet you seem not to have plans in this direction? What do you think you’ll be doing after retirement?
LaNm: I am currently settling some things. I hope to commentate to share my experience with more fans and audiences, and I’ve also considered becoming a coach to prolong my dreams. But everything is still in the works, I still haven’t made a decision.

CEA: Your career hasn’t been the easiest. From your point of view, has your experience as a professional player given or taken more overall?
LaNm: The setbacks I’ve encountered have also been a part of my growth, so I’ve definitely gained more.

CEA: Looking back on your entire career, what has left you with the deepest impression?
LaNm: Two things. One is the moment when we won WPC, the other is after elimination my teammates embracing me and consoling me.

CEA: You mentioned a memoir just now, and previously you have revealed related details through your Weibo, so when can we expect to see this memoir?
LaNm: Around one month’s time, I’ve already begun writing.

CEA: Finally, say something to the fans who have supported you all along.
LaNm: Thank you to each of your for your support, I will continue to be active in the esports scene.

Source: http://user.qzone.qq.com/1095789385/blog/1407400976
Follow DOTALAND: twitter.com/Dotaland