Official Chinese Dota 2 portal site and forums ramping up with events

Original: http://bbs.dota2.com.cn/viewthread.php?tid=4835&extra=page%3D1

Wondering what our Chinese Dota friends have been up to? How their community has been growing and evolving? Here’s a snippet…

In this thread, they are sending out a call for talented and passionate community contributors — artists, writers, video-makers. Ostensibly the goal is to gather a large group of fans that are also contributors, with beta keys and more unannounced perks as incentives…

This has been a part of the official Dota 2 Chinese site ramping up lately, in preparation for the rumored April launch of the first wave of closed beta invites for the Perfect World Dota 2 servers. In fact, the official Dota 2 Chinese forums are lively and active, and promise to only explode in popularity in the next few months.

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VG makes internal changes: ZSMJ to join VG first team and play alongside Cty

Original: http://dota2.uuu9.com/201303/439877.shtml

Previously it was mentioned that VG’s carry player Cty had been working with ZSMJ and sharing experiences on playing carry, and now the two carry players — one new, one a veteran — will have the chance to play and compete alongside each other.

Vici Gaming have announced that ZSMJ, previously part of their newly formed second team, has now been moved to their first team, replacing sydm on the VG first team roster.

As a legendary status carry player, ZSMJ will retain his carry role in the new squad, and Cty will move to the 2 role, while the rest of the roles remain unchanged. At the same time, the captain of the squad has shifted from Fenrir to Cty.

Here is VG’s first team roster as of now:

Cty (captain)
ZSMJ
Xtt
fy
Fenrir

 

 

Chinese Dota 2 server test to come Apr 15?

Original: http://dota2.sgamer.com/news/201303/149633.html

Gamefy commentator Haitao, during a live case of an event recently, accidentally revealed that the Chinese servers, by Perfect World, for Dota 2 would be making their debut on April 15. As for how accurate this information is, that remains to be seen, but as a big-name commentator at Gamefy, surely his words hold some value. Regardless of whether April 15 is the actual date, the servers must be coming soon anyway! According to widespread rumors online, the servers will be coming in April, so this information seems to be at least somewhat reliable.

Apart from that, another somewhat worrying bit of information has reached us — that is, once the Perfect World Dota 2 servers are up, Steam will begin blocking all mainland Chinese IP addresses! If this is for real, then many Chinese players might lose access to Dota 2 entirely, as the Perfect World beta is very limited and many who have Dota 2 on Steam will not immediately have access to Perfect World’s Dota 2. Nonetheless, our editors here at SGamer believe that it isn’t quite possible for Steam to block all access to its platform, and rather, it will simply block access to Dota 2… if this is the case, then Perfect World faces the problems of ensuring that all current Chinese Dota 2 players on Steam get access and get to keep their purchases, cosmetics, etc.

Anyway, all speculation aside, let us await the approaching Perfect World Dota 2 servers, and see for ourselves the truth behind all these rumors!

 

 

iG.ChuaN and iG CEO Efeng question and answer session

iG held an event on t.qq (similar to Twitter) where anyone could ask questions and they would answer. Good questions, good answers. Check it out.

Questions to ChuaN and his answers

Q: How tall are you and YYF?
ChuaN: I am 190cm (roughly 6 ft 2 in), I dunno about YYF

Q: Will your girlfriend think you’re too fat?ChuaN: I am working hard to lose weight!

Q: Can you reveal how speaking rights are divided within the team?
ChuaN: We discuss things together, there isn’t really anything like that

Q: ChuaN-god, it’s been a while since you’ve come to China. After your pro gaming career ends, what are your plans? Will you stay in China? Or go back home?
ChuaN: Right now all I’m thinking about is how to play well, and get good results.

Q: Will there be more interactive events between players and fans?
ChuaN: We often do these on our official YY channel 90007, and we’ll be frequently streaming first person gameplay there as well, we welcome everyone to come visit! (Dotaland guide on how to watch YY streams here)

Q: How did you first step onto the path of becoming a pro player? In many people’s view, esports is the same as casual play… Can you tell us what your training is like? Is it at all similar to what some people think?
ChuaN: I stepped onto this path by playing and fighting for my dreams! Esports has become my professional career, so it isn’t simply play! Every day we undergo specific, targeted, and planned training!

Q: ChuaN-god! I am here in the name of my roommate, who wishes to profess his love to you!
ChuaN: Thank you, I love you guys too!

Q: You went from being a solo mid player to successfully transforming into a 4 position support, very different roles both mentally and attitude-wise. How did you adapt?ChuaN: Thinking back on that moment standing on stage as champions, all the sacrifice is worth it! The team and togetherness above all else!

Q: Are you optimistic about Dota 2 in China?
ChuaN: I am very much optimistic about Dota 2 in China!

Q: How long is your daily training, does the club arrange other activities for relaxation?
ChuaN: The club arranges physical exercise; I am really good at basketball! ;P

Q: How much longer do you plan on playing Dota, ChuaN-god?
ChuaN: I will play until I cannot play anymore!

Q: Which competitions will iG.Dota take part in in the coming year?
ChuaN: All big competitions we will participate in! And we’ll do our best to achieve good results, we hope that everyone supports us!

Q: iG add oil
ChuaN: Thank you for the support!

Q: iG is my spiritual belonging, I believe in iG… How does an esports club have this much magic?
ChuaN: It is the result of a collective effort and nurturing! 🙂

Questions to iG CEO Efeng and his answers

Q: Will there be iG-branded merchandise? Stuff like gaming peripherals, perhaps?
Efeng: Yes! This year, even!

Q: Out of iG’s players, who do you think will get married first?
Efeng: My guess is either YYF or Zhou.

Q: Can I get a blessing from you in my quest for the goddess in my life?
Efeng: Sure, as long as your goddess isn’t my wife, I officially bless your quest.

Q: What do esports players do after they retire?
Efeng: The cream of the crop can continue on as leaders, coaches, or managers after they retire. Others can transition into club support staff, media people, or work at gaming companies, or become a commentator. Lots of possibilities 🙂

Q: Efeng, what are your views on those players who are still very young, and also need to continue their studies?
Efeng: I feel that these things aren’t necessarily in conflict with one another. Games can be their hobby from youth, it’s the same basic principle as those kids that take up things like art, sports, etc. And if they display true talent in some way, then they can consider a career in it. 🙂

Q: Hello sir, can you say whether you’re satisfied with the atmosphere of our esports scene? Compared to foreign esports, what are some weaknesses of Chinese esports?
Efeng: Still lacking in mainstream recognition and understanding.

Q: When will the iG website get an overhaul? It’s lacking compared to many foreign clubs’ sites. Looking forward to official iG forums, so we iG fans have somewhere to go. What do you think?
Efeng: It’s all in the works! There’ll be an all-new look soon!

Q: I would like to ask, what is average pay and compensation like in the industry, what are the benefits?
Efeng: Staff are comparable to typical gaming companies. For players, it depends on the club and the players’ ability. The better the results, the more popular the player, the more they get paid… similar to professional sports.

Q: As a university student, how can I best contribute to esports?
Efeng: Study hard, graduate, then join the esports industry!

Q: Any considerations for creating sub-teams, for example regional or provincial feeder teams?
Efeng: Yes, in the future we will have all sorts of developmental squads.

Q: As management of the club, what are the most important things for the club’s success? Where does most of your funding come from? Thank you.
Efeng: I think that the most important things are stability and the ability to execute well. Funding mostly comes from sponsors, sales, events, and promotional activities.

Q: Have you thought about creating an international squad?
Efeng: If Chinese players are the best in something, then what’s the point in creating an international team?

Q: What are your thoughts on flexibility of roles and the ability to transition between roles in esports?
Efeng: I feel that the limits are much fewer, and it is much easier to transition between roles in the esports industry, as long as one is willing and able to work hard. Those who can be successful players can also be successful esports staff. 🙂

Q: How do you compare Chinese esports skill level with foreign?
Efeng: Chinese esports is very strong!

Q: For esports to sucessfully become an Olympic event, what do you think is the biggest bottlenet? What are primary cash flows for various parts of the club? Thank you.
Efeng: I think the biggest bottleneck is popular support and recognition… As for funding for, players have their salary, bonuses, sponsorship and events, the club has sponsors and sales, and staff have their salaries.

 

 

Dotaland weekly recap: Mar 21 — Mar 27, 2013

G-1 Champions League Season 5 is in full swing and phase three is just about to kick off, led off by a Phase 3 preview on the G-1 portal. On top of that, check out all sorts of interviews with players from many different participating G-1 teams. Additionally, this week saw debate on esports in the mainstream in China, with a very well-written newspaper article summing up many useful points — worth a read. All this and more, below!

Mar 21

For.Love adds KingJ and Zippo

For.Love adds two veteran players shortly before their G-1 debut. Results were not ideal, but understandable. The roster looks promising on paper, surely For.Love will be back stronger!

G-1 interviews: For.Love.KingJ, RSnake.LaNm

New For.Love member KingJ talks about his reappearance on the scene, LaNm shares his thoughts on his new team and G-1.

Mar 22

G-1 interview: VG.CTY

VG’s carry player CTY talks about what it’s like to now be in the same club as ZSMJ, and more, in this G-1 interview.

Perfect World’s Dota team making moves

A short update on what Perfect World are up to, and the status of Dota 2’s launch in China.

Mar 24

G-1 interviews: RSnake.Icy, TongFu.Mu

Icy shares insights on Gyro, thoughts for G-1, Mu gives thoughtful answers

Mar 25

Chinese Esports National Team incoming? …And related debates of esports in the mainstream

In this article that first appeared in a Chinese newspaper, we touch on mainstream understanding and acceptance of esports in China, along with hints that government organizations are looking to support esports in a major way in the future.

Mar 26

G-1 Phase 3 preview; interview with Chains.Johnny

Looking at the 8 teams that have made it this far, their strengths and weaknesses, and what to watch for. Also, a link to an interview with Chains’ Johnny.

 

G-1 Phase 3 Preview, interview with Chains.Johnny

More G-1 updates! Click through to the G-1 links, content inside provided by Dotaland via friends at 17173.

G-1 Phase 3 Preview: Champions, Challengers, and Chains

After a well-fought Phase 2 that saw some major upsets, we’re on the eve of the Phase 3 of Season 5 G-1 Champions League, 2013. With this marks the first appearance of the so-called ‘Big Three’ of China, in the form of iG, DK, and LGD.cn, accompanied by the lone non-Chinese top four finisher of last G-1, Orange. With only four spots available for Asian teams at the LAN finals, competition promises to be fierce, upsets possible, in G-1 as newcomers and the old kings of Dota alike fight it out for the right to compete offline for the largest Chinese Dota 2 prizepool to date. Season 5 of the G-1 Champions League continues with Phase 3.

ChainsStack.Johnny G-1 Interview: I want to go to China

The underdog in both of their encouters so far, Chains Stack has posted two upsets in the qualifiers for G-1 Champions League Season 5, first defeating For.Love by 2-1, then last night completing an impressive 2-0 victory over RisingStars to claim the group B spot to the next phase. After their latest success, G-1 got ChainsStack’s mid player Johnny for an interview, let’s take a look.

 

Chinese Esports National Team incoming? …and related public debate regarding the status of esports in China [article]

Dotaland note: Worth a read for sure! Background info on esports in China, along with a report on the current state of esports, as triggered by a recent controversial online statement.

Original: http://dota2.sgamer.com/news/201303/149593.html via Chinese newspaper Morning News

Last week, an announcement from the national sporting agency instigated a wave of debate. The announcement suggested that they were looking into establishing a national esports team of 17 members, the purpose being to go participate in the upcoming 4th Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games.

“Electronic sports” can be counted as a sport too? This was the topic of dispute, and it spread rapidly throughout the internet.

On the 22nd, one He Chao, the younger brother of national and international diving champion He Chong, posted on his weibo: “Electronic sports counts as a real sport??? Just playing a game is enough to win Olympic gold, if this were the case then all our real training and hard work is for nothing, might as well go and play games all day……” This ripple, by the power of the internet, magnified into waves of controversy, as things quickly exploded into a war of words online.

Yesterday, our reporter interviewed long-standing participants in the esports realm, and gained a deep understanding of the living conditions of an esports player — this is an environment which, on the outside, looks like a casual, entertaining way of life, yet in reality it is a stringent, grinding, often dull profession; it is something that has been misunderstood by society from the get-go.

A 30 minute game requires no less than 7200 keystrokes

Just last night, the He Chao who had provoked the proverbial hornets’ nest in the way he addressed this topic, deleted the offending post and in its place put up a serious and sincere apology to all those in esports. Yet this act did not serve to calm the already disturbed waves of dispute revolving esports, this new and rising sport. The discussion remained divided between two camps, and the debate continued as to whether esports was simply “playing a game” or not.

In actuality, it could be very simple to determine the real truth and solve the dispute. In order to better understand the problem at hand, we must first clearly understand what really encompasses ‘esports’, and what, exactly, the difference is between ‘esports’ and the much-loved and mainstream accepted ‘online gaming’?

Way back in November of 2003, esports had already been included as the 99th entry in a list of sports as determined by the national sporting agency, and on their official website, it is possible to search and find many pages on the topic of esports. There are real facts and figures to support the fact that esports has requirements of brainpower and stamina alike, and these demands are comparable to other competitive sports. For example, WCG 2006 Warcraft 3 Champion, Sky, had an APM over 200 on average, which is to say, he clicks the mouse and hits the keyboard 200 times per minute. According to calculations, over a 30 minute game this amounts to over 7200 keystrokes, with an added 6000 mouse clicks, far outstripping the intensity with which an average computer user might operate. The concept of ‘sport’ is precisely displayed in this form of high intensity, quick tempo activity — and this is without taking into account the high pressure mental environment in such a competition.

It can be said that, over the years, esports competitors have existed in an environment of extreme misunderstanding of what they do.  As computer usage has gradually become an integral part of people’s lives, as people have accepted and grown accustomed to mice and keyboards, the misunderstanding grew. Average people view these things as a normal part of life, and so the connection between a mouse and a keyboard and ‘sport’ has never been made, instead they assume that these things are the same things that they use in work, or play, and so there must not be much difference in what esports competitors do and what they are familiar with.

An online survey found that 70% of respondents accepted esports as a sport

Therefore, many of those in esports feel ‘alone’. Current marketing director of SCNTV gaming media company, Cui Fangzhou, is a veteran of the earliest crop of Chinese esports competitors, having once been part of a national team training camp in 2007. Today, even though esports has been an officially recognized sport for nearly a decade, and officially support for four years, yet mainstream attention and understanding of it is still miniscule. Cui Fangzhou says, even though in terms of mainstream penetration and acceptance, casual online gaming has more reach than many traditional sports, the concept of ‘esports’ is still mired in the idea that it is an ‘improper profession’.

Yet, Cui Fangzhou believes that, from an objective point of view, esports shares many similarities with traditional sports. From talent scouting, to intense training, and everything in between, esports shares the same type of hard work and sacrifice required for success in traditional sports.

Cui Fangzhou gave our reporter a very simple exampe to illustrate his point: For example in the game Angry Birds, average players might only play to pass each stage — once a stage is past, it’s past. Perhaps the average player passed it due to sheer luck, or an accident, but a professional player would not have this attitude, and would seek to be able to reliably reproduce the result on demand. Thus it can be said that a competitive gamer would focus on the smallest of details, the slightest of angles or power level in an Angry Birds stage, and even spend hours or days on figuring out the equivalent details in an esports title. The end goal, of course, being that if the player were to meet this same situation again in the future, he or she could guarantee that they would know how to handle it right away.

Such is the difference between playing for fun and playing as a profession. Even so, many people remain in the attitudes of “esports is no more than just a squeeze of a mouse, some taps on a keyboard”, and even more parents, because of an inherent lack of understanding for these things, decide that this is a path with no future for their children. Cui Fangzhou, on the other hand, believes that the current industry and market for esports has reached a relatively mature degree. He reveals to us that just last year in the Dota 2 game, six teams from China competed for a prize of 1 million dollars, with one of the teams succeeding in winning it. Additionally, first team players for most teams maintain a monthly salary of around 10,000 RMB, with living and eating expenses covered.

From Cui Fangzhou’s point of view, there’s a reason each and every competition sport exists. He told us he’d also seen He Chao’s post online, but he brushed it off: the roots of misunderstanding in esports are deep, and not something that can be reversed overnight. As someone who’s been through it all, he said, his hope is that society as a whole will become more accepting of esports over time. As with competitions in ‘normal’ sports, every competition in esports has sacrificed, given sweat and tears, and worked hard — on this, they do not lose out to anyone.

Worth a mention at the end is, perhaps their passion in esports has influenced another batch of bystanders. As of this writing, popular sentiment within the debate itself has shifted in favor of esports, and on a major domestic web portal, a survey showed that over 70% of respondents supported the notion of esports as a true sport. This, it seems, would be a good start for people like Cui Fangzhou.