MinD_ContRoL talks about the Meta
and what makes Team Liquid click
Just before EPICENTER we got the opportunity to sit down and talk to Mind_Control. We released a player profile based on most of his responses which you can read here. However, there was a lot left over from the interview where he went into adapting to the new patch, how Heen impacts the team, the way Liquid comes up with some of their more… unique drafts and the heroes he wants to play but doesn’t always get to.
There was a pretty major patch change again with 7.06 with Shrines being taken away for the first 5 minutes and creeps spawning every minute being brought back, did you find it difficult to readjust in time for StarLadder?
No actually it was very easy because I didn’t enjoy the patch before. The patch before it was too easy for me because there was a Shrine and you can do anything in the offlane, you can fuck up and then you can regen everything, so the offlane was very easy and I didn’t like it. Everyone could do it and that’s why I didn’t like it. Now they made it hard again and it feels good. It feels good that it’s difficult again.
Do you think that better showcases talented offlaners more now that it has become harder?
Yeah, that’s what I like about it. It’s very hard and you have to work very hard to get to the level where you can actually offlane in real games.
During StarLadder, you went undefeated in the group stage and none of those matches took more than 30 minutes, did it feel like you understood the new patch better than the other teams?
Hmm, I’m not sure. I think we found some heroes that were good in the patch but we didn’t really have better understanding. Everyone had the same understanding but we played better as a team.
What does Heen do to help you when you feel like you’ve hit a wall and don’t know how to move forward?
Heen does a lot of things for us. He studies the opponents, he finds their mistakes, he sees their warding patterns. The most important thing he does is the advice he gives to us, he helps us a lot, he helps everyone individually.
What has Heen helped you with in regards to this new patch?
Well I don’t want to say too much and go too inside what he’s said. *laughs* He always gives us the most important information from the patch, there’s always stuff that isn’t very important, but the things that really matter he will always see it and he will talk to you a lot about and keep reminding you every day.
We got to see your Earthshaker twice during the finals of StarLadder which we haven’t really seen in almost a year other than one game during the Kiev Major. Was that something you had practiced, or did it just fit what you needed?
No it wasn’t really practiced. It was a random feeling in the tournament, I thought it might be good so we tried it.
Because it’s been so long since you played that hero did you think of any new item builds that might be good on him because of all the new or changed items?
I think you can change the boots now because Power Treads got buffed. It gives 10 stats now instead of 9. It’s not the best boot but sometimes you can use it, I can see it being viable.
You came 2nd at both the Shanghai, and Manila Majors. Do you look back on those events and feel satisfied that you did so well, or more… frustrated that you came so close to winning a Valve Major.
I feel okay with it. I know I could have won and it would be great but it was a good lesson, both of the finals, for this year. I learned a lot from them.
Did you like the swiss format group stage at the Kiev Major?
Oh… I’m not sure about the format but I didn’t like the single elimination, so if it includes that I don’t like it.
So if it had been double elimination it would have been fine?
Yeah I think it would be fine. As long as you have a second chance it would be very nice.
Are there any offlaners you think will come back in this patch that haven’t been picked much previously?
I think we can expect some Puck. Maybe Legion might come back, she fell off a bit, and maybe Abaddon will also be picked more.
So it’s less about farming cores and more about utility in this patch?
It’s more about utility yes, but you can still farm with the utility heroes. You can mix it. I don’t really know the whole patch yet, I still need to play more to know so I’m not completely sure. It’s more like you get some utility you get some team fight and you farm a bit and get your blink. It’s mostly the Blink Dagger guys, they’re becoming famous again.
So is it more similar to TI4/TI5 offlane?
Yeah it’s just a bit slower because the neutrals got nerfed by 20%.
7ckingMad recently talked about you during one of Epi’s interviews and had some really high praise, calling you a Dota genius for the way you play and think about the game. How does it feel to be acknowledged by your peers in such a way?
I don’t know *laughs*. I don’t think I’m a Dota genius but if he thinks that it’s nice. *laughs*
What are some of the strangest quirks your teammates have that fans don’t know about?
Well… Miracle always wants to… I don’t know if I should really say this but Miracle always wants to be like… Eminem for some reason. He always wants to sing with him all the time.
Are there any heroes in particular that you want to play going into Epicenter that you probably won't get to play?
Well the thing is I like some heroes but my Captain won’t let me play them. There’s a lot of those heroes. You know, I like Nyx Assassin. I think it’s very strong, but he won’t pick it for me! I think he thinks I’m bad with that hero or something, there must be something going on there.
I remember you saying you wanted to play Broodmother in the finals of a Major.
Yeah, so I guess he doesn’t like my Nyx! But maybe he’ll like it, let’s see. I’m going to try to convince him and maybe I’ll play it. I’d like to play Earth Shaker again, that hero is nice. Obviously Dark Seer, and I like Batrider too.
Across the last year you’ve had multiple heroes you’ve been well known for, Beastmaster, Furion, Dark Seer, Slardar ect. Is that something that is prepared for different tournaments?
I mean I do prepare but it’s mostly because of different patches. If there’s a new patch maybe the hero will become weak. Take Beastmaster for example he’s pretty weak. There’s a reason people don’t play him. I also play a lot of heroes in my pubs and in our scrims and that’s why I’m able to play a lot of heroes in real games.
Liquid can be very creative in the way that you draft. Does Kuroky ever come to you with ideas for what you should play in the offlane?
No, it’s mostly… we draft together most of the time. The creative ideas come from the other guys, me as well, but it’s not from him. *laughs*
Would he say he comes up with some of it?
No, because it isn’t him. He doesn’t do it. *laughs* So don’t blame him guys! If you see Miracle playing Sand King it’s definitely not Kuro’s idea.
Thank you very much for taking the time to talk with me this morning, do you have any shoutouts you’d like to give?
Shout out to our fans, my friends, and my family.