EPICENTER XL had a different approach regarding the talent for their first ever Dota 2 Major and took a lot of risk by welcoming to the event six voices that have never been part of a Dota 2 Major or an International official broadcast.
Among them, Nick “BreakyCPK” Caras, a true legendary voice for Heroes of Newerth, a DotA1 passionate but a rather mysterious voice for the Dota 2 fans. We had the pleasure to sit and talk to Breaky on the day off at EPICENTER XL and we tried to cover some of the major points of why new talent is not having an easy path into the Dota scene, despite an extremely packed tournament schedule.
Hello Breaky, how do you feel after the group stage marathon?
I feel good, here we are, in the break day between the groups and the playoffs. I had a lot of fun with the six days of group stage matches. I feel like casting those games it became sort of a routine, I’m not gonna lie, I was really looking forward to getting to the main event already. Especially yesterday, but I understand you have to get through all the group stage first.
So, this is your first Dota Major, as one of the 6 winners of the EPICENTER XL contest, however, you have a ton of experience behind you. You might have done just a few Dota events, but you are quite the legend in HoN. What is your opinion on this competition, and on how did the Dota season go for the new voices of Dota 2 commentary?
I’m super glad EPICENTER had this idea to be honest and it might sound biased because I’m here because of this contest, but all things aside, hats down to a tournament organizer who takes so much risk for doing this. Maybe, with this being a Major, maybe it wasn’t the best time to introduce 6 new casters but again, I’m glad they did it.
And here is the thing, at the beginning of the DPC seasons, when so many events were announced I was told by so many people that there will be so many opportunities this year because of the amount of Minors and Majors. However, we are now really close to the end of the season and I feel like there weren’t in fact, that many opportunities. Part of that is because TO’s wanted to go with the same consecrated faces and voices, and I must say I understand that. But at the same time, there were a lot of complaints from the casters saying that they are tired, we even had talent literally taking days off during an event because they had so many back to back tournaments to cast.
So, what I’m trying to say is that I hope next season the tournament organizers will take a look at what happened and will take these things into consideration and realizes that there is actually more talent in the scene.
I’d dare to even say it’s a little bit of shared blame if you want. These people who do accept 6-7 events in a row must have to also realize that traveling for 3-4 months to back to back events will eventually get them extremely tired. So, on a personal level, I think people should start to make some choices as well, just like the teams that went to all the starting events and you see them now being really exhausted.
Yeah, totally, but let’s be honest: it’s money.They are being offered these good deals and, nobody can blame them. I completely understand why they take so many events. All that I hope is that the current situation will be looked at in the next season.
Fingers crossed. Let’s talk a bit about you and let’s go back to DotA 1 days because you do originate from there, then you switched to HoN, became an extremely popular commentator there and now you’re back to Dota. So, let’s start with the begining, how did you get into DotA in the first place?
DotA 1 was originally a side game for me to play with my friends, specifically with my World of Warcraft guildies. You know whenever you would finish a raid, or in an raiding off day, we would gather and play some DotA maps. One day I got a beta key for this game called Heroes of the Newerth and it kinda became the Dota 1.25 for a lot of people, me included. It was DotA but with better graphics. So we had a lot of people joining this game, it became a popular thing and it just so happen that it actually changed my life in terms of what I got out from this game.
A few years later, it was a natural transition if you want, a lot players switched to Dota 2. And I made the jump myself almost two years ago.
I was about to ask you how do you feel watching and commenting a lot of these Dota 2 players that you know from HoN days. There are a few who were pretty successful there.
I almost feel like a proud papa, in a lot of ways. Way back, in the early HoN days especially we had all these people you now know for their great Dota achievements. NotaiL, Era, Peterpandam (PPD), Kyle, Zfreek, all the Stay Green roster in fact, God there are so many players I could list names the whole day. Zai, Khezu, and then the most more recent batch of players like iNSaNia, miCke, Boxi. It is really cool to witness these players develop the way they did.
You’ll make your EPICENTER debut, do you get still get nervous ahead of an event of this scale? I’m asking this because I’m expecting the organizers to deliver another super stage set-up and all the great things we saw at the previous editions, which weren’t even Majors.
I’ve seen the stage being built and it’s pretty impressive, I’m not gonna lie but I wouldn’t say I’m getting extra nervous going into the main event.
Even though I’m not the most experienced with the Dota events, I do have that kind of experience of casting in front of a large audience. You gotta see the HoN events in Thailand, even to the present days, those are something really special. For some reason, the fans there and the audience for HoN is what you see at a Dota event in the Philippines. So, I’ve been casting in front of a big crowd before but every time you go in front of the live audience there is that adrenaline kick, you feel those butterflies. But, ultimately, I’m ready for this. I’m ready to go into the EPICENTER main event.
In some regard your voice reminds a lot of people of Ayesee, Aaron Chambers, some say you even sound like Capitalist, do you mind when you get compared with other people?
Yeah, I do get related to them, I was even told I sound like Tobi, apparently, some people think I even look similar to Tobi and it bothers me a little bit because those comparisons make it sound like I’m trying to be like them, which is clearly not the case. I’ve been doing the job for just as long as them, if not longer in some of the cases, but yeah not all the people followed HoN so maybe this is why they don’t know exactly who I am. But every time I see someone comparing me to these people I try to take the positive side of it because they all are successful casters. I do ultimately hope that for me, and any other caster who is trying to break into the scene, that we will be ultimately seen as who we are and that everyone will stay true to himself. There is no need to try to imitate or copy someone.
Last question, after you saw so the group stage matches, who do you think will be in the grand finals?
It will be hard to not say Virtus.pro. This is their home ground after all and although they looked a bit shaky at times in the group stage, overall they are definitely the dominant team right now. When they are on point, they play very well, and that’s gonna be the question as it is with every Dota 2 event: Will they be playing at their top level when it comes to the main event? The home turf thing can be both a great thing but also a curse. For the grand finals, I would also go with OG. I’ve been very impressed with them at this event so far.I think they proved with this group stage result that the roster change they made, a roster change that was looked at with a lot of skepticism by many, it was all worth. Seb is a great player, he was their coach for a long time, but before anything else, Seb was and he is proving that he still is a great player.
Ok, thanks, a lot for taking the time to talk to me and I hope to see you at more Dota 2 events