VPesports caught with Team Liquid’s captain Kuro “KuroKy” Takhasomi a day before the Bucharest Major playoffs are scheduled to kick off.
We had the pleasure to sit and talk with Kuro about the group stage experience in Bucharest and we ended up going down on the memory lane all the way back to The International 5.
Hey Kuro, first of all, let me congratulate you on the group stage run. How do you feel at the end of the four days bo1 marathon?
Because we had to play just one game per day I feel very casual about the entire group thing. Of course, I’m happy that we made it to the playoffs, that’s all.
It’s the first time we see a best-of-one eliminatory Swiss group stage format being run for a Dota 2 Major. Do you have any feedback on it?
Personally, I like the Swiss format but to be perfectly honest I feel that it took too long. As I said, we had just one matchup, one bo1 every day and that I didn’t like. I would have liked to play some best-of-three series, or maybe play two matchups per day. With this one bo1 per day, I think the tournament is stretching out for too long for no reason at all in mind.
But then again, the Swiss format I think it’s very nice, it’s a very good approach for the group stages. I actually like to have different formats from one tournament to another. It doesn’t have to be always the same format. It’s exciting for viewers to see different things and for the players as well.
You guys have won three minors after TI 7 but haven’t been able to close out a Major yet. What seems to be the obstacle?
I think that there is no big problem or a certain thing I could call an obstacle really. This is how the tournaments go, especially when you play more of them. Sometimes you win, sometimes you don’t. All the teams that won the Majors they were just better. It’s how I see it, they were better prepared, they were ready for that victory.
For the second game against Fnatic in the Katowice Major semifinal, was the role swap decided from the start or did you guys change positions after looking at the draft? I’m talking about the game where you played Arc Warden and Miracle was the support Bounty
We didn’t have it in mind at the start of the draft, but we had some things going on as the draft was developing and we decided to add some experimental side to it. It was an agreement between all of us. Basically, it was a thing that had to be done. That’s all I can say about that game.
Do you believe at all in the TI curse?
No, I don’t
Dark Willow was recently introduced to Captain’s Mode. A lot of people believe the hero to be overpowered, but she hasn’t been contested too much in the group stage here. Why do you think is that, do the professional teams not see too much potential in her?
Dark Willow is a strong hero for sure, but I think most pros just didn’t practice her. There are a few players, especially the CIS ones who spam her. I always see in my pubs the Russian Dark Willow spam, and they are so good with her. As for us, we don’t practice heroes that are not in the Captain’s Mode, it’s just a waste of time and our time is very limited.
So, I think this is one reason for why we haven’t seen her so much yet. The other reason is that maybe the hero is not that good potentially, but because she was just added nobody really knows, I think. I have a very open mind about her, I don’t find it too imbalanced and I believe that in the right hands she can be extremely powerful. But this is how it goes with nearly any hero anyway. If a player is extremely good with a hero he will just make it look like it is overpowered. We have so many examples of players who truly excel at one specific hero, regardless if it is or not in the meta and that’s one of the beautiful parts of the Dota 2, in my opinion.
How are meta heroes defined? For instance, Bloodseeker and Necro were hot picks in the TI 7 patch. They haven’t been nerfed too much but we don’t see them at all these days. What is the thought process behind it?
If we are to talk specifically about Necro and Bloodseeker, I believe that these two got, in fact, nerfed quite a bit while other heroes got buffed at the same time, so for Necro and Bloodseeker was a double nerf if you want.Then, the way the game is played changes, plus the players will end up figuring out how to play against these heroes.
Usually, at The Internationals there were a lot of novelties, new heroes popped out every TI and teams didn’t know how to react to them. For example, Necrophos was not a popular hero pre TI7. A lot of times at a TI it happens to have one team that figures out really strong heroes for their players, like the biggest example for me is the TI5 where CDEC took the second place. The CDEC guys learned the meta game so well and came with heroes that nobody else understood and they shaped the whole TI5 meta.
A similar story happened at TI 7 with my team. We invented things that didn’t exist before but over the time people figured out how to play against Necrophos, so yeah to answer your question, I’d say it’s a cumulation of factors that make a certain hero to vanish from the meta. Dota is just so complex at its core and you have to be so aware of every change. Any small change can have a huge impact on your game.
You just mentioned TI5 and I remember some specific Techies game of yours at that International, would you be happy to see the hero back in the Captain’s Mode?
I remember I played Techies once in the group stage at TI5 , against Cloud 9 and I played it also about one month before TI5, in the MDL of that year against CDEC. Yeah, they had an Undying in that game, CDEC [he smiles]. I remember I saw some things with the hero in some pubs , but I had my own ideas as well of how to use the hero. I think Aui_2000 was at that time a big believer in the hero. But yeah, I remember that TI5 Techies game against Cloud 9 very well and yes, I would like to see it back in the Captain’s Mode, to be honest. I just don’t know how powerful he is right now because I haven’t really looked into it.
I actually think that all heroes should be in Captain’s Mode, we don’t need to wait so long, we have bans anyways, so I don’t see why we shouldn’t have all the heroes in the CM. Just add them in and let people ban them for a month and this will eventually stop naturally. Then people will start playing the heroes, people will learn to counter them and that way you have the meta developing. Having the pro players actually doing something with these new heroes, the devs, the balance team, will see and know what needs to be changed if it needs to be changed.
There is also this exchange that happens between the pros and the pub players. Sometimes the pub players take something they see in a tournament and they start to spam it, sometimes we learn from the pub players, so again, I believe having all the heroes available in Captain’s Mode would be really nice.
Kuro, it’s been a pleasure to talk to you, we don’t have much time left for our interview so if you have any shoutouts to make at the end of our conversation please go ahead.
Thanks for the interview, and shout-out to my sponsors, to my team and to all our fans reading this!
Interviews from the Bucharest Major
PPD – “Hopefully we can make our fans proud at this Major”
KINGRD & Tavo – “It’s challenging and more fun to play against the best teams first”
Ohaiyo – “It wouldn’t be wrong to say Eternal Envy was behind my termination from Fnatic”
Yao: – “We are definitely prepared to fight”
Kyle: – “We are pretty good at Dota, we just need to actually prove it once in a while”
Faith – “Opponents Begun to ban Naga Siren – so we had to revert to older drafts”