ShenGG: 'We will put up a good show at GEST April!'
As last month's silver medallist and an up and coming powerhouse for GEST April, Invasion Red look determined to repeat their success this weekend. Team captain Wai Seng 'ShenGG' Quak shares his thoughts about the Filipino-centric metagame and more in a GosuGamers exclusive.
Let's give our readers a recap of what happened last month. As GEST March's first runner's up, your team emerged top of your group with 0 losses and played through the playoffs only losing to eventual winners XctN.
Why do you think Invasion Red was so successful last month?
-"Last month was a great start for Invasion Red. As for Ohaiyo and I, we emerged from Orange 2 and were searching for new teammates when we found Invasion Red.
They were a team who was able to have proper LAN trainings so we started ours two weeks before GEST and we got alot of feedback and suggestions from Mushi, Winter and especially Nash. It prepared us alot for the tournament and made us confident about our playstyle.
Wasn't it ironic that Orange were eliminated during the group stages?
-"It was reasonable because, as we all know, they had just finished participating in a Dota 2 competition and had less time to prepare for DotA."
Well, it seems like your players have been around in the scene forever but Malaysia is always represented by a combination of MUFC and Orange. What are your thoughts about these two teams and their recent performances?
-"MUFC and Orange are great role models for us. Both of them always put up a great fight every time they compete. As for us, we may have been around in the competative scene for a long time but only at local tournaments, so we are still in the process of learning and have a lot of room for improvement in order to compete with other SEA teams.
Our goal is to achieve top three in SEA."
What is the DotA scene in your country like? How about Dota 2?
-"Malaysia's DotA scene is quite weak because it is always the same few teams joining local tournaments and some of the tournaments will ban the top teams like MUFC and Orange. For those teams that have no sponsor, they usually spend their own money for transportation, food, registration fees, etc so its kinda hard for them to join all the tournaments out there. Most of them are students who love to play DotA!
Nowadays, Dota 2 is getting a lot more attention in Malaysia because there are a lot of beta key giveaways for Asia and there are lot of Dota 2 players in Invasion Cyber (Cafe) right now."
Is Invasion Red one of these teams you spoke about having to pay for their own fees? If you had the opportunity to attend an international LAN event, what event would it be?
-"Before getting spnsored by Invasion Cyber, we were one of those teams that spent our own money for about one year to attend every tournament we wanted. We are glad that Mr. Andy placed his trust in us and provided us with a great place for training. I would like to attend WDC in China because it's an awesome event."
Were you a Na`Vi or DK fanboy at last year's event? *grins*
-"I am an all-time DK fanboy but the rest of my teammates are Na`Vi fanboys. *laughs*"
Alright, let's talk abit more about GEST. Malaysia used to be the center of SEA DotA but it seems like the spotlight is increasingly shifting to the Philippines especially after SMM 2011 and two months of GEST.
What is your take on this? Did the Pinoys suddenly decide to play awesome DotA or have they been doing it correctly all these while and we're only realizing it now?
-"In my opinion, it's because of the new DotA map versions that suit their hardcore gank style and of course bottle crow. *grins*"
-"For example, in the past versions, Queen Of Pain, Slardar, Dragon Knight and Chaos Knight were underrated heroes but these heroes happened to be Pinoys' favorites. So in the new maps, even small changes for these heroes made the metagame completely different as can be seen from the past two months of GEST where the Filipino teams owned so hard.
They have been playing these heroes for a long time but it just so happens that now these heroes have found their suitable version to emerge. 6.73 and 6.74 is their time to shine. *smiles*"
Yeah, we saw that last month with Templar Assassin and Naga Siren having the most impact at GEST March. Why do you think this was so? Is it due to the nature of the hero and the metagame or is it just the way the Filipinos are playing them?
-"Filipinos always come up with very good strategies and at the last GEST we were shocked about Naga Siren and Templar Assassin because we never expected it from them. This was especially so for Naga Siren's Ultimate and its recent buff to allow manual toggling - it just disrupt all your opponent's combos and can help turn over fights."
Are you prepared to play against these heroes this weekend?
-"Yeah, we are ready to ban these heroes this weekend. *laughs*"
*laughs* That's the easy way out! Do you think other heroes will pop up? Heroes that you wouldn't expect - what would they be in your opinion?
-"I think Dark Seer, Sand King and Shadowfiend have that potential."
What about Rubick?
-"Rubick is a very good hero but we are still finding a suitable role for him - he is just too fragile."
Let's talk about your group. How would you evaluate the other three teams? (Mineski, Neolution and StarsBoba)
-"Mineski is a team that have very strong individually skilled players and we may just lose the game if we lose early on in lanes.
Team Neolution seem like they are getting stronger after defeating MitH-Trust in their own local league.
As for StarsBoba, I can't anticipate what heroes they will choose because they always surprise us in every tournament. Having the opportunity to compete with these three teams is an honor for us. *smiles*"
In that case, does Invasion Red have their own personal style of playing DotA? Which other competitive team most closely resembles your team's playstyle and why?
-"Of course, we have our own personal style but we always look up to Chinese DotA. I think that our playstyle resembles team LGD because our hero lineups are mostly similar to theirs."
-"LGD's favourite heroes like Chaos Knight, 'Sylar bear' and Pandaren Brewmaster. *grins*"
Right, have you been praciticing with the other participating teams? Which team(s) look strong to take the title this month?
-"We have been practicing with team Orange most of the time. I think they look strong to take the title this month because they performed very well at the India Gaming Carnival and Mineski Pro Gaming League. They have a winning streak right now."
Hmm, they actually lost out 1-3 in the group stages for GMPGL.
-"Ya, but the experience they gained from that made them stronger. We have been seeing a couple of new drafts coming out from Orange in our trainings."
Anyway, I have one last question which I meant to ask at the start of the interview. If you had to use one adjective and one noun to describe each of your teammates, what would they be?
-"Kelvin Tan - Laughing Gor (He has the loudest laughter in our team.)
Ohaiyo - Big Eater
FzFz - Special Mover (He's always solo killing and solo dying.)
Snow - workaholic"
With that, we're done. Good luck this weekend. Any shoutouts?
-"Big thanks to our sponsor Invasion Cyber, Mr. Andy, and our fans - we will put up a good show at GEST April!"
More information about GEST April can be found at the following link. The event will go live this Saturday with coverage provided by caster David 'GoDz' Parker.