Gamefy commentator BBC hype piece: Previewing the upcoming G-League finals


Dotaland note: Gamefy commentator BBC writes a long piece hyping up the upcoming G-League. He previews the finals matchups while also reminiscing on what has brought him this far in esports.

To succeed is to give your all.

If one knows one’s own interests, then no matter if one has luxury in food and clothing or has to settle with the simplest of provisions, one can be at peace.

For everyone in childhood, there are dreams, and for each and every one, the answer to the question of what those dreams may be is a different one. Yet, almost surely, for the majority of people, what they’ve achieved in the twenty years following childhood must result differently from those original dreams. Those that successfully stand on their own and achieve success in their dreams undoubtedly are the strong ones in life. Still, those that manage this much are rare; more commonly it is those who, like me, have been constrained, worn down, by time, and ultimately followed the flow of life to settle into whatever average, normal, everyday life we have now.

I remember, before my high school college entrance exams, I got hooked on playing Command and Conquer. As someone who had always seen the days leading up to major exams as the best times for gaming, even I had to retract that preference a bit and bury myself in studies in the face of the final hurdle of high school. And so, immediately following that, in the summer days, I fanatically contributed my savings to a nearby internet cafe as I awaited letters of notice from colleges. It was Starcraft, and then Heroes of Might and Magic 3, Diablo 1 and 2, Baldur’s Gate, Warcraft 3, DotA, all the way to today’s Starcraft 2, League of Legends, and Dota2.

Computer games grew up alongside many a kid, especially boys. Instead of talking about what makes games so interesting, the focus should perhaps instead be on how enticing it is to strive for victory for gamers who viewed winning with such desire.

On the other hand, everything in moderation, and if one gets too hooked on something then the joys of victory no longer remain joyous, and instead become an agonizing trap. The taste of struggling between balancing gaming and studies is one that I have experienced before, wandering between a steady path and the fork in the road, and it’s something I’d never wish to experience again.

Luckily for me, today I can do something I love as my career, even in the face of all the hard work I’ve put in for it. So here I present a soundbite as wisdom and a warning for all my fellow gamers: “If you pursue gaming as a career, then there is no need to have a care about other’s words to you no matter how invested you are. Can those outside understand you? But if gaming is just a game for you, then remember to indulge in moderation; happiness forever exists only in the realm of moderation.”

I remember, in the internet cafe across the street from school, back we were still fighting in Warcraft 3 with ball-mice as our equipment, at the cost of sleep and food, I could always re-create the experiences of pro players such as Shomaru, Magicyang, and briefly feel at the top of the world. Each and every battle, regardless of the outcome, left me pumping with adrenaline, and I was obsessed. Yet, ten years later, my Warcraft 3 is still so noob, and against Magicyang I’m still winless. Still, recalling the memories, those were beautiful times.

Every basketball fan has fantasized what it’d be like to be Michael Jordan, every football (soccer) fan has dreamed of being Ronaldo. And even though we may not be able to achieve that much, still no one can take the beauty of those dreams away. So, even though today we cannot return to the wild days of our youth, we’ve still once had dreams and ambitions, and those won’t fade so easily with time.

For those that like basketball, they have the NBA, the FIBA World Championships; for those that like football (soccer), they have the European Championships, the five big European leagues, the World Cup; then, for those that like esports, is the only thing we have the dubious tag of “video game addicts”?

We must thank those sponsors that support us. Even more so, we must thank those fans that have been following G-League since 2007. Over these years, people have come and gone, time rushes on, yet you fans remain. We remember your praises, your criticisms, and all your warm applause.

From Starcraft, Counterstrike, to today’s Warcraft 3, Starcraft 2, League of Legennds, and Dota2 — from a tiny studio to a finals stage in the center of Shanghai’s Century Plaza, Oriental Pearl tower, all the way to this year’s Mercedes-Benz Center. Every year, every iteration of competition has its own stories and unforgettable moments. How will the brilliance manifest itself this time?

In Warcraft, there are three Orc Kings: Grubby, Lyn, Fly. Each of them has their followers, debating amongst each other who truly is the king of kings. Nowadays, Grubby has switched, and this last finals may be the last time we ever see a battle of Orc Kings. As I recall it, Lyn is a graceful assassin, under a handsome exterior lies a determined soul and heart. In a past G-League match against Ted, with only two heroes left after losing his base, his mesmerizing micro steadfastly brought him back from the brink, leaving us memories that are unforgettable to this day. And Fly gives us a much more direct, aggressive impression, from his early inspired play to his peak performances of straight back and forth fighting. A bit shy in person, he attracts quieter fans. March 9, these two kings of orcs face one another once again, and we look forward to finding out the king of orcs!

In Starcraft, it’s always been dominated by Korean players. In today’s age of Starcraft 2, the best success for Chinese players so far has been second place at WCG — belonging to Xigua. Being able to snatch a second place from the grasps of the Korean players can be considered a great achievement, yet fans will always hope for even better. For Starcraft fans, that thing that they’ve always hoped for yet never dared to truly hope for is for a Chinese player to be world champion. Jim says, Xigua’s playstyle is too easily countered. Well, for 17 year old kids, they may not quite understand tact in their words, yet within those words is confidence gained from so much dedicated practice. March 9, the hope of Protoss challenges our Zerg King, and we hope for a world-class battle!

The explosive popularity of League of Legends is undoubtable. In LoL teams, the explosiveness of team WE is even more obvious. Ever since they appeared, their performances in taking most every domestic competition, ending in their taking a world title in the end of 2012, WE have firmly established themselves. “Beat WE? S2 might’ve been a bit harder, but in S3 it’s more up in the air”, iG’s PDD replied in an interview. To become the alpha, one must defeat the alpha, such is the world of LoL. March 9, iG brings the challenge to WE, and we anticipate a great fight!

Dota2, as the official successor to DotA, has long since been China’s strongest esport. In 2012’s TI2, just as NaVi looked set to sweep all Chinese teams out and take the title, iG stood up. In the music hall in Seattle, in the waves of cheering for NaVi, all of China, from spectators, commentators, to fellow players yelled their voices hoarse in support, just to let the exhausted iG know that they were not alone. And iG finally proved themselves with a world title, in the process defending the honor of Chinese Dota. Afterwards, was formed with players from five different nations, and gathered in China to train. Today, their ability pushes them close to the NaVi of TI2. March 9, iG faces the challenge of, what promises to be a battle for the ages!

This time, there aren’t only matches. G-League has also, for the first time, invited supporting guests, and they’re ones that most everyone will know — singers Zhang Zhenyue and MC Hotdog. I personally like Zhang Zhenyue’s “Missing you is a sickness” and MC Hotdog’s “Mr Almost”. Nine to five everyday, the days just sort of pass by like that. Yet, a life without passion is unbearable. Sometimes a week goes by with over 60 hours of live broadcasts, and so when my work has me drained, I hope for some passion and change. Every G-League finals becomes just that type of passion and change, giving me an outlet. This time, we’ve mixed esports, rock and roll, rap, for what is certain to be a passion-filled party!

March 9, 2013 will only appear once on our calendars. On that day, in Shanghai’s Expo District, at the Mercedes-Benz Center, there’ll be a grand finals for a certain G-League. In your heart does there still burn the fire of esports, or perhaps are you still youthful?

Who will ascend to the heavens of victory; how many more people will join us in our love of esports? We give it our all, if only so you can enjoy yourselves fully.

March 9, G-League, the Battle of Mercedes-Benz Center, we invite you to witness it together!


Dotaland weekly recap: Feb 7 — Feb 13, 2013

This week saw the Lunar New Year holiday kick off all across Asia. News has been slow. We had iG wishing us all a good holiday, a very well-written analysis piece of BurNIng, and the highlight of the week undoubtedly goes to the iG.YYF documentary. A sparse week in terms of quantity, but absolutely not lacking in quality. Read on and take a look…

Feb 9

iG wishes a joyous Lunar New Year to all

In this video, iG’s players, from every squad, wish all their fans a happy Chinese New Year.

Feb 10

DK.BurNIng playstyle and skills analysis

Following the iG.YYF playstyle and skills analysis (also translated on Dotaland, here), Gamefy brings us another in-depth look at a renowned player, this time in the form of one of Dota’s greatest carries.

Feb 11

The life and times of iG.YYF

For the holiday, and in anticipation of his appearance at the upcoming G-League finals in Shanghai, Gamefy produced an exquisitely-made video looking into YYF’s past. This was the highlight of this week, and rightly so.

The life and times of iG.YYF — Gamefy G-League Documentary [video]


iG’s YYF takes us home, talks about his past, and gives us all an intimate look into where he’s come from and the people that helped him on that path… really, really cool.

MAKE SURE YOUTUBE ANNOTATIONS ARE ON! Be sure to give the original at Youku a click too, for views!




DK.BurNIng playstyle and skills analysis by Gamefy


This is following the previous analysis by Gamefy of iG.YYF, translated here

Xu Zhilei (徐志雷), renowned Dota player from Anhui province. Ever since making a name for himself, he’s been under the intense bright-white of media lights. From his first achievements with  7L, then an explosion in fame during his Ch time, to ten titles with EHOME, nine titles with DK, and four finals appearances in the re-formatted G-League — with two resulting in wins — this steadiness in his performances and results have brought him the formidable title of being “Number 1 carry in the world”. In 2012, with the meteoric rise of iG, BurNIng’s star has faded somewhat, yet he still remains within the top echelons of professional Dota players by virtue of his exceptional individual ability, even earning the greatest of honors in the form of IceFrog naming Anti-Mage after him in-game.

Overall ability:

Awareness rating: SS

For a carry player, economy and space to farm and grow provided by teammates’ protection are the most important aspects influencing a team. While your teammates go to great lengths to provide these conditions for the carry, it is the carry’s responsibility to best make use of the conditions and turn them into effective items and resources to in turn contribute to the team; this is something that every carry must learn and practice. BurNIng is a prime example of a carry that has this ability — he very rarely makes the wrong choice in itemization, has great laning ability, and possesses deep knowledge in the details and key points of the heroes he plays (for example, getting Quelling Blade at start on Alchemist in order to play aggressively in lane). Additionally, he has the ability to adapt item choices in accordance to what is happening on the battlefield: for example in 2010 with EHOME, his choice to go Diffusal Blade on Alchemist in order to help Dai’s Sniper escape from the powers of Sheepstick was heralded by viewers everywhere. In that same year, his full-agility Morphling with Ethereal Blade wiping PIS’ Nevermore in mere seconds, can be said to be a highlight of his career.

Rhythm rating: A

BurNIng has never been a great one when it comes to dictating tempo and rhythm in a match. In matches, he rarely is the one to direct the entire team’s actions, and as such he is more of a legendary warrior than a unifying general. His style leans more towards focusing on his own growth and farm in early and mid game rather than pressuring the opponent. His is a safe playstyle: if the chances of failing a tower dive are more than 20%, then he will pretty much not go for it. Since going pro he has rarely played a number 2 position, instead it is the norm that when he does finally emerge from farming to fight, he is able to dictate the entire match. His mega-fat Anti-Mage was caught on camera at TI2 and surely left a great impression for fans all around the world.

Mechanics rating: S

Dota is definitely not a game where mechanics are everything, but without a solid base of fundamentals in mechanics, you will have nothing to play on. At BurNIng’s peak, he was an absolutely ideal carry player, with superb laning, top level last-hitting, quick reflexes, and perfect late-game team-fight decision making. His experience playing Chen during his time with Ch, plus his early experience in competitive Warcraft, gave him a great base in terms of micro and control. To put it in simple terms, BurNIng is a giant farmer that can effectively perform in teamfights, but some major mistakes and lacks of communication in 2012 are worth further consideration, because the small details determine everything.

Heroes diversity: S

As a top tier carry, hot picks in the current version include Anti-Mage, Faceless Void, Lone Druid, Phantom Lancer, etc, and these are all heroes that our man Xu Zhilei is closely familiar with, and can unleash all of the potential of. But if his own team fails to grab any of these carries for him, and instead gives him mid-game heroes such as Naix or Luna, his performances betray an obvious unfamiliarity with the styles required to play these team-fight centric carries. His Naix falls in fierceness to YYF’s, his Luna makes her presence less felt than either Zhou’s or Sylar’s, in the first half of 2012 his Chaos Knight was weaker than Hao’s. And so these are all places where the “universe’s number 1 carry” can make improvements. In the increasingly fast, increasingly team-fight oriented modern Dota versions, strictly afk-farming for a super late game carry is a very easily countered strategy. Finally, his understanding of Anti-Mage’s core item choices nowadays also seems to have fallen behind Zhou by a little bit.

Playing uphill: SS

BurNIng in 2010 and 2011 won 19 different titles. Amongst those wins, how many times did we see him ‘save the world’ in situations where his team were at a large disadvantage in early game, utilizing his amazing late-game ability to come back. No matter if it’s an online competition with thousands of viewers or an online tournament, BurNIng has always been calm and serene, in both ways: he can not only ignore massive pressure and harrassment in times of being behind, but also ignore a huge advantage for his team. What this means is that he never allows the big picture of what’s going on around him to affect his individual performance and execution, and thus very rarely fails to recover from a terrible start. This makes him the most mature, stable carry player. As for his latest three competitions since Anti-Mage was named (G-League, G-1 League, and WCG) where he has yet to use Anti-Mage, whether the reasoning behind this choice is because his team has never needed it or he is afraid of the pressure behind it, if you’re reading this BurNIng, I would like to know too.

Individual skill:

Last hitting: 97

For the universe’s greatest carry, his last hits are something that you need not worry about at all. Even though it isn’t as impossibly amazing as ZSMJ’s farming, BurNIng’s last hitting regardless of under tower, free lane, or under lane pressure, can and does always satisfy. In terms of fundamentals, when given free-farm he’s even more reliable, so if you want to practice last hitting, please peruse BurNIng’s vods, it’s beyond worth it! Taking a popular saying, BurNIng belongs to the class of players that “can be outplayed, but can never be out-farmed; can be pressured, but can never be stopped from farming”.

Laning: 95

B-god’s laning is absolutely first class. Amongst the big three carries, his solo ability is undoubtedly the strongest, and he rarely allows the opponent to control him. Fast reflexes, lots of experience in using vision and positioning, he’s a scarily reliable all-around carry player. His Lone Druid, especially, regardless of whether he’s on the safe lane with support or solo mid, can always reliably farm out core items and levels. BurNIning plays very aggressively in lane, yet rarely gambles his own life — if the chances of him dying while getting a kill surpass 30% then it is certain that BurNIng will choose to back off and ensure his own growth.

Decisions: 91

BurNIng has always been good at making decisions based on the situation in-game. His timing in entering the fray as a carry has always been seen as a textbook example for other players to learn from. With such perfect timing in each teamfight, Burning Show Time is thus born. Yet, going into Dota2, BurNIng has been repeatedly tripped up by tiny details in items and execution, sure to be a lifelong regret. The greatest example of this was in G-League versus LGD, in the second game DK had taken a comprehensive advantage and BurNIng’s Phantom Lancer was six-slotted, yet failed to consider the cooldown on his Boots of Travel and thus he was forced to walk back to the fight after buying back. But all was too late as in the time being, his teammates, Cheese and Aegis in hand, fell one by one to the might that was Anti-Mage, who had himself bought back and rejoined the fight faster. At that moment, BurNIng’s fans must’ve been shocked beyond the point of words. One TP scroll, a 12 second cooldown, all of BurNIng’s short-fallings and regrets of 2012 embodied within.

Positioning: 96

Positioning is a Dota player’s most basic action, achieved by only moving and clicking the mouse. But truly understanding the intracacies of positioning is not something that every player learns to the same level. Over-extending and getting picked off, staying too far back and missing out on combos, these can be seen in almost every match. Using positioning to take the least amount of damage, or using it to bait the opponent, these are all basics for every player yet some of the hardest things to get right. BurNIng’s positioning as a carry could be said to be one of a kind during his peak, rarely ever showing any mistakes. Always in the right place to get kills, always perfectly getting into or withdrawing from a fight, thus fully projecting a carry’s strength. Especially worth mentioning is his control of blink heroes, on those heroes B-god indeed has practically no weaknesses.

Ability usage: 90

Perhaps because of his role, BurNIng is not a player centered around his ability to use abilities. More often, it is by his farming, laning, experience, and reliability in his role to influence matches. It seems that he rarely appears in flashy top 10 compilations. Heroes like Naix and Chaos Knight that rely quite a bit on technique and abilities usage, BurNIng has significant room for improvement. Still, his understanding of how to use the ults of Faceless Void and Anti-Mage is exceptional, always effective.

Counter-gank: 98

Top, top-tier counter ganking sense. He very rarely ever gets caught in a gank; it’s almost as if BurNIng has a gank-radar installed inside him. Once the opponent disappears off the map he can pretty much figure out where they’ve gone, what path they’re going to take for a smoke gank, where he should blink to safety if they do find him, and whether his teammates can come support in time. These are all things that require greast amounts of practice and training. With Smoke becoming an ever more important item, experience becomes all the more important, and his talent becomes the separating factor for players looking to be the best.

Current version Carry scores:

Anti-mage: 98 — IceFrog honors him, a B-god named hero. Understanding of the hero is practically watertight.
Lone Druid: 97 — DK’s 9 title run in 2011 had this as their signature hero. Steady 16 minute radiance, IceFrog personally praised
Faceless Void: 95 — Lots of spectacular plays, excellent usage of the ult
Phantom Lancer: 92 — A new-age carry, not many examples of success. BurNIng had a chance to make a name with this hero, but one mistake with Boots of Travel, and the result is sadness.
Luna: 90 — Not many uses, solid performances.

Overall: 96

Overall BurNIng’s main strengths are reliability as a carry. Aggressive, tempo-dictating plays are relatively rarer compared to other carries. Teams that BurNIng has played for basically all revolve around him as the core in their strategy. His style leans toward helping himself over the team early on, and he certainly possesses the skill to go 1v5. All the titles over the years have said more than anything else. Compared to his old rival in Zhou, B-god has more attributes as a carry, and whenever he’s played as a super late-game role he usually performs excellently. Zhou instead has transitioned into more of a team-fight carry, sacrificing more of his own growth in games. Both carry players have their reasons for their styles, but it is clear that in current versions, having more heroes farmed up provides more room for error. In 2013, when BurNIng once again meets his old rival in Zhou, whether he can regain old glory and break iG’s current dominance will depend on whether he can cut out key mistakes, whether he can escape from real-life issues, whether he can play his Anti-Mage of old again. 2013’s G-League, TI3, we look forward to BurNIng’s answer.

Transfer value estimate: 150000-200000 RMB (considering his age, plus rumors of retirement, his estimated value is lower than his actual ability would otherwise dictate, plus he’s currently steady with DK and chances of a transfer are miniscule)

iG wishes a Happy Chinese New Year to all!


Only translated the Dota team’s greetings. Their section starts at 1:00 in. Before them is the LoL team, after them is the SC2 team, as well as iG team administration.

Happy Chinese/Lunar New Year to all who celebrate! It’s truly the happiest, most boisterous time of the year in many Asian cultures. 🙂


Dotaland weekly recap: Jan 31 — Feb 6, 2013

Still a relatively slow week, as we’re now in the final days of the year of the Dragon. Next up is the year of the Snake, and our players and teams across China have all taken to their homes to celebrate the passing of the year with their friends and family. This week saw news of an earthquake and the perseverence of Dota players in the face of it, a video from 820, an analysis of YYF, and a few other things. Check it all out at Dotaland!

Feb 1

Earthquake uncovers best Dota teammates ever

There was a mild earthquake in China, and this guy’s teammates at the time played through it for the sake of finishing the game. Foolish? Perhaps, but the line between bravery and folly is thin.

Feb 3

Gamefy playstyle and skills analysis of iG.YYF

Pretty in depth look at the machine that is iG.YYF. A good read if you’re always looking to pick at the details of what make great players who they are.

Feb 4

820: Behind the Glory

In this video, where we’ve provided translated subtitles, 820 shows up and updates fans a bit on his latest tribulations and triumphs since his retirement.

Feb 5

Gamefy Best of 2012 vote

Otherwise known as the “iG team of the year 2012” vote. You can go vote for iG too, just click the link. Oh, and there are some other players listed as well, for some odd reason.

Chinese Dota2 beta codes steadily approaching

Players can now check via a page provided by Perfect World whether or not they’ve made it into the first two waves of beta invites.

Players can now find out whether they’ve been accepted to the Chinese Dota2 beta…

Going to the query page provided by Perfect World, and entering the email addressed used to sign up now allows players to check if they’ve been accepted in the first two waves of beta invites going out. Beta invite waves are currently in the third wave (note that no actual invites have gone out, but being able to check status means it is close and will probably come on schedule in March). Know any Dota players in China? Let them know; if they haven’t signed up yet, refer them here, the more the merrier!