OGA Dota PIT Minor marks the full return of a Chinese Dota 2 legend. The International 2012 Champion, Luo “Ferrari_430” Feichi hasn’t been onto a Valve sponsored event stage since 2015, so we couldn’t miss the opportunity to talk to him to find out how he’s been readjusting to the pro scene.
Hello Ferrari, it’s been a long time since we’ve seen you on a tournament stage and I’d like to start by asking what made you come back from retirement and fight your way back to The International.
Although I didn’t play professionally for about three years, my passion for Dota 2 has never gone away. I’ve been playing casually and streamed a lot and I realized that I still have it in me and that playing on a professional level is all I want.
Did the OG and especially Ceb’s story from last year fired up something in you?
Who is Ceb, the offlaner?
You didn’t forget how to troll, did you?
Haha. To answer your question, no, it wasn’t really the OG story that made think to come back. I knew before TI8 that I want to come back and play professionally, but I also knew that I have a lot of work to do and I didn’t want to rush things. I started by playing more casual with Big God, Mr Game Boy – Newbee until I felt I’m good enough to rejoin the professional scene.
So, where would you say you stand now in terms of form compared to the TI2 days, when the Dota 2 community dubbed you as “The Pianist” and everyone was considering you the best mid-player in the world?
I’m definitely not as good as I was at TI2. That was my best shape, but I’m working hard to go back to that. I just joined EHOME and this is the first time when I play in a full competitive set-up in a few years so, I’m still adjusting, still learning how to play around my teammates.
Of course, you’ve kept playing, as you say, casually, but since 2015 which was your last TI appearance, the game has changed a lot, and the mid lane is also completely different in terms of playstyle and what it requires from a mid-laner. Did you find it hard to adapt to all the changes?
To some extent, yes. For instance, compared to a few years back, the mid laner has to be more active and more aware of all the roaming, all the ganks that are coming for him. The map has changed and the strong AoE mid lane heroes can now actually farm a few neutrals in between creep weaves, the runes mechanic is changed. Of course, the most basic things, like last hit/denies are still the same, but compared to a few years back it’s not enough for a mid laner to have the best last hit/deny to win his lane. So, I would say the game is more challenging for a mid laner now and that’s why I say I still have a lot of work to do and that’s exciting.
China used to have much more youngsters coming out every year and take the scene by storm, while now we see a lot of the scene legends struggling to put a team together, and we also see a few young players just showing up for an event or two and then they vanish. Why do you think the Chinese scene is struggling a bit to find new talent?
Well, to begin with, Dota 2 is not the most popular game in China, the fan base is not that big compared to other game titles. We also have some young players who perform very good online but have problems to adapt to a professional career. It’s been happening a lot for a team to recruit a young and very talented player, someone who might be in the top on leaderboards, just to find out that he can’t adjust to a team house, to daily practice and to everything else that is required from you when you start to play professionally.
We have several tier two teams here at the OGA Dota PIT Minor, which one impressed you the most?
After a few days in this event, we started to call Majestic Esports, the South America Liquid and BOOM ID the Southeast Asia Secret. We do that because they really showed up and we were super impressed with their plays. I think both of these teams have huge potential.
BOOM ID actually knocked you down in the lower bracket. Did you expect EHOME to have to fight from the first lower bracket round?
After we saw how we performed in the group stage we kind of expected and we started to prepare for the lower bracket, so yes. We are still learning how to play together and what strategies fit us the best as a team. We think we found a few answers and we hope we can make a lower bracket comeback.
Alright then, I wish you best of luck on the finals day and I hope I get to talk to you again in Shanghai, at TI9.
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