At ESL One Hamburg, Shiaopi and 2009 sat down with Misery and talked about why he chose to play in South America and the teams plans as they move forward.
First of all congratulations on achieving a pretty surprising Top 4 finish. Most of the observers did not see Pain Gaming as one of the contenders for ESL One Hamburg. So how does it feel to “shut up all the haters” to paraphrase it like that? How do you feel?
I feel good. I think if you look at it from that perspective it is a pretty good result. That being said, I think we suffered a loss yesterday in which we did not get to really play that much. And I feel like that is still a bit sad. But at the end of the day it is still a good result.
I want to talk a bit about that crushing defeat in that game 2. How do you recover mentally? Especially since you are the captain for pain gaming. You also have to keep in mind team cohesion and mentality. How difficult is it to recover from such a stomping from the opposing team?
I think in this case it’s actually not that bad. Because like we talked about already. The result we already had was acceptable for everyone. And I also think that we just had a bad day. We had a really good game against Aster but then later on in the evening we might have been tired and worn out a bit. It was a long day and we could not find the fire again that we had against Aster.
So I think that was part of the reason why the games were that one-sided. I don’t think it was too bad.
Since you also qualified for Kuala Lumpur. Will you go into preparations already for it or do you have some off-time in between?
I guess the off-day is today and tomorrow when we are travelling because we are going there straight up tomorrow and we are gonna be bootcamping in Kuala Lumpur. So yeah, that’s all we get.
Speaking of Kuala Lumpur. Of course you have been to Malaysia before a number of times already. With ESL One Genting etc. Are you looking forward to going there again? Do you feel like the energy of the fans there and the kind of things you can get there is something to look forward to?
Yeah, for sure. I feel like I haven’t seen that much of Malaysia even though I have been there like 4 or maybe 5 times at this point. But every time it’s been a lot of fun being there. The fans there are just something else compared to anywhere else in the world. So obviously looking forward to that a lot. And for the most part I think going to Southeast Asia is always a good time.
So we had been asking you personally, what about the rest of the team?
I’m not sure if they have been to Southeast Asia before or not. I think they were in the Philippines last year. But I think they are also looking forward to it as well. I think they are very positive and happy to be part of all the tournaments in the industry.
Since we were talking about passionate people from Southeast Asia. South America is also renowned for housing a very dedicated scene. After TI, you first were the coach of the reforming Pain Gaming. What made you decide to go to South America? What was the potential you saw there, especially in comparison to the other regions? What makes it stand out?
There are a few things. First of all I really believe that this team is good enough to win tournaments and while I was coaching I understood that this team actually, with me, could be even better. And compared to...I had some other offers. There were some other directions I could have gone after TI. But I still feel like this was the best for me. Not just like that, but also socially, I really like hanging out with these guys. And then South America just seems to be a good region to play in this season. Just because it’s pretty easy access to all the majors and all the DPC points that could potentially be there.
In regards to the development of the South American region. A year has passed since they got dedicated qualifier slots in the DPC. In the previous season you have also met with a lot of South American teams. Now you are playing in one yourself. How would you describe the development of the region in its entirety in this first year they have been included in the wider scope of the dota world?
I actually think they have improved rapidly last year. I guess the first really big step they took was the Kiev Major where they (SG-Esports) beat Secret out. Ever since then they have kind of been still just there but not really improving that much. And then last year I felt like they were actually doing pretty well, when they were at tournaments. You could just see from their games that they had the potential to beat the best teams, but there was still something missing.
So for that missing piece. Obviously you are rather new to the South American region. What are the differences in Dota playstyles between SA and Europe or NA, where you have been playing for a long time before?
I mean they are a bit more free I guess. They are a bit less restricted by rules and formats, stuff like that. As for the regions I think it is pretty hard to play in South America. Overall there is not that many good pub games. There is not that many teams to practice against. If you play on any other server it’s really laggy and the ping is a problem. So it’s both good and bad in that sense.
You brought up the point that there are not that many teams to scrim. Does pain gaming scrim fairly often against the sister team pain.x?
To be honest I have only been in South America for one week, when we played the regional qualifiers. And I think in general we are not gonna be there that much. Ideally how we want this season to go is like this:
We go to tournaments and we bootcamp in other countries and then when we have to play the qualifiers we go back to Brazil and play the qualifiers. And we want to stay out of South America as much as possible. Not because it is South America, it’s just because it is so hard to play Dota there.
So it’s hard to stay competitive if you only play in that region?
Now for something rather more unrelated. Patch 7.19 has been around for a couple of months now and the community has been crying: “Oh, it’s getting stale! There is nothing new! We want a new patch!”
As a captain would you agree that the metagame starts to turn stale after a couple of months on a patch or do you think there is always a new thing to find in a patch?
Oh, I think there is always something new to find. You can even see it in this tournament. Even the small patches that nerf and buff a few heroes, it actually makes a big difference. In this tournament and even at KL Major I’m sure there is gonna be a lot of new things that you have to think about all the time.
However, I do think a patch could be interesting. Because you know...even though the competitive scene keeps evolving, keeps trying to beat each other. It is still kind of limiting what you can do in this patch due to the dual lane meta and how little kills give in the early game. I think it would be more interesting with a new patch.
Speaking of a new patch, do you have any preferences where the game direction should go? Or maybe which heroes should get buffed or nerfed? Is there like a special hero you really hate? We were talking to MSS earlier and he just said: “I don’t understand how Necrophos is still not nerfed. He is so OP!”. Are there heroes you consider that OP as well?
I mean yeah, there are some heroes. I would agree Necrophos is just kind of annoying. I also talked to my team earlier and I feel like Necrophos is at a point in the tournament, where nobody really wants to play it. But no one wants to play against it. So they are just kind of like either picking it to ban it or banning it to get rid of it. There are some heroes like that. I feel like Broodmother was also at that at one point. I’m not sure about specific heroes. I think it would be cool if we could be a bit more flexible with lanes without losing out on xp and gold too much.
Thank you very much for your time, good luck for Kuala Lumpur and safe travels!
Interviewer: ShiaoPi, 2009