Valeur: The unique story of a team

Posted by Arnab "AP()ll()" Ghosal at 13 November 2009 11:36
The unique skipper tells us about his team, his life, his strategies and his future plans for the team.

Unique is one of the top teams in the European DotA scene with a very talented roster and a hunger for victory. With the Dreamhack Tournament upon us Gosugamers caught up with unique|Valeur to know more about his team and their thoughts about the upcoming tournament.

Hi Valeur, I don't think you would need any introduction to the fans, they love you. So let’s get to know more about how you got to meet the boys and set up this team together.

-Well actually it was Donald's work mostly; I've just taken over where he left. He handpicked me from Rape as they disbanded, picked out Durum who was clanless at that time and Babyknight's team of 4KINGS dissolved as well, leaving him teamless. Smiske and Tito joined in along the way. All-in-all I think we've gotten our hands of some really good players for their roles.

How does it feel now then with Donald joining fNatic and u leading the team?

-I was never keen about leading a team, since I might have a lot of the leader capabilities, but I lack ingame experience a lot. Regardless of my lack of experience, I was the most obvious for the choice because I had strong ties of friendship to all the players on the team, like Ducky had, and I were the only one with leader capabilities who was online enough. Personally I would've favoured Smiske or Tito as leaders, but they simply couldn't put enough time into the game at that moment.
But I am happy for Donald he found a team he likes and it warms my heart every time I hear him whining about playing support =).

Elaborate your role in the team both before,during and after a match, do you guys shout on each other during a match?

-Haha, before the game it's my responsibility to gather all the players for the match. During the match I will do the drafting, though heavily assisted by everyone else, since I am not a "Puppey" as we say. After the match, I will try to cheer people up if we lost, and if we won I will tell everyone I am proud of them and they played really strong! If we lost a big, important game, though, I go lie in my bed with a depression for some hours.
We are mostly successful in keeping a friendly tone on vent, but when emotions are high, we sometimes yell at each other! But so far, no-one has directly RAGED on another player and left the vent, and stuff like that. And I'm happy for that. It's important that we can criticize each-other without getting too mad. It's all a game and we're supposed to have fun =).

If we lost a big, important game, though, I go lie in my bed with a depression for some hours.
You had given a walkover in the last two matches against and Azn, don't you think this would affect the fans belief in you?

-I was really unhappy to give walk-over in both of these matches, as a leader, but I have to blame the tournament organizers and not myself or the team. After a long period without tournaments, they scheduled like 3 tournaments in the same weekend. We had the Dota Pro Club, EDC qualifiers and EMS qualifiers. My team played 7 matches in a row on Saturday, and then Azn wanted to play that day as well, it was simply impossible for us.
And regarding the def-loss to none of us had realized it was at 12 in the AM already, so people couldn't come. It's just how it goes sometimes.

How does it feel leading a team consisting of players from different countries having different playstyles and concepts? Doesn't it ever feel overburdening?

-Overburdening? All the time! The problem mostly focuses around Babyknight and Tito =). Tito loves to play really aggressive, while Babyknight like's aggressive play as well, he tend to be more careful about it, wanting to go in when it's safe, etc. Which puts me, Smiske and Durum sometimes in positions where we have to make some on-the-spot choices whom to follow, but it tends to go okay.
Everyone will just go in and then Babyknight comes in last to clean up the kills =).

Haha. What do you think about the recent form of Babyknight, he is getting quite famous with his good carrying style nowadays, special practice may we say?

-Babyknight has played OVER 9000 SIGS. Ah, that's a lie, but he has played about 3000. I think about 90% of those games he played a carry hero and went solo mid. It makes his playstyle unique, since he relies heavily upon his own skill against the opponents, and I'm happy to say that he comes out on top most of the time. I think in a 1v1 situation he is in the Top 10 of the world, no kidding.
He only needs to evolve his teamplay more, which is what we're trying to do, and he'll be in top 10 best players of the world, in my opinion.

Doesn't this constant association with DotA, be it playing or discussing or even thinking about it make you bored? Haven't you ever thought of giving it all up and just sitting back for a while?

-It's a very good question and the answer would be, every single day! =). What keeps me sane about DotA is that I have a girlfriend I've had for 1½ years and several good friends, and none of them give a flying shit about DotA or that I play it. I usually meet up with my IRL friends or girlfriend at least every second day, so I can get some time away from this DotA. I also think, that as soon as I get a full-time job (I am studying at the moment) or go to the military, DotA will be far away from my mind. I play DotA as a hobby, nothing more.

What keeps me sane about DotA is that I have a girlfriend I've had for 1½ years and several good friends, and none of them give a flying shit about DotA or that I play it.
How do you spend your time in an average day? How much do you play? Do you work somewhere or are you a student?

-Well, this past week my days have been messy, but a really average day for me would be- 13:00: I wake up, turn on my computer and start playing, 16:00: My girlfriend comes over and we hang out, do some grocery etc, 21:00 I watch a movie with my girlfriend or something similar, 23:00 My girlfriend goes to sleep and I come on to play some more DotA or funmaps =).
Other days I go to school from 17:00 to 21:00 and I will play for the remaining of the day. I usually go to bed between 03:00 and 07:00 in the morning, since my school is at night.

Dreamhack is just round the corner. What are your plans for the tourney? How far are you aiming?

-Well, as for Dreamhack, it's the thing we're really gunning for! Since it's gonna be the first Dreamhack for several of our players, we are really, really excited. I know that teams like DMZ, and other strong teams are going, but we're still aiming for 1st place or at the very least top 3 - anything else would be a disappointment. We will bring in some extra manpower to take it to the top!

Extra manpower? Are you bringing secret players Valeur?

-Haha yeah, we'll bring in some players that will surprise some of you, since only Durum, Tito and I are able to go from our normal rooster. Yeah that's right fanboys - god B won't be able to participate, but we'll do the best to replace the irreplaceable =).

What are your future plans for unique? Any particular tournaments you have planned to attend in the near future?

-Oh, I don't like to plan too far ahead. But we're of course participating in DotA League Cup, since we were unable to qualify for Dreamhack (goddamn you to hell, polish people!) and we're aiming to win that one as well. Besides that we'll participate in anything we can get our hands on!

I would like to thank you for this engrossing interview. Would you like to shoutout to the readers and fans here?

-Haha no problem =). I'd like to shout-out to Pusher - he's still upset I beat him 2 to 0 in Legion TD, and I think this might cheer him up. I'd also like to shout-out to all of Unique for bearing with my noobness still =) - and give a wish for the community to start shaping up and being as intelligent as we all know you can be! No more vigoss trolling please, both me and MiseRy- are regretting we ever started it.

Favourite hero: At the moment that would be Lina, she's my bitch.
Favourite Item: Force Staff
Favourite player: That would have to be the new lag-free Tito. =)
Favourite Map: 6.64
Favourite Tournament: I hope it to be Dreamhack.
Favourite team: MYM

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