PSG.LGD did not start the 2017-2018 Dota 2 season too well. But after a couple of changes in the mid season transfer window, the Chinese team has taken the scene by storm! One of those changes was the introduction of Jian Wei ‘xNova’ Yap as a position 5 support. xNova came in from WG.Unity and although he has had his fare share of critics, I think it’s fair to say he has proved them wrong. VPEsports had the good fortune of talking with xNova right before the team heads into the Dota 2 Supermajor. We spoke about his move from WG.Unity to PSG.LGD, the teams sudden rise to prominence and the format of the season amongst other things.
Hello xNova! Two days away from the final DPC tournament..the Supermajor! How are you and the team feeling going in as one of the favorites?
This is the last DPC tournament, so I’m very excited and confident going into it. Hopefully, we can get a good result here as preparation for going to TI 8!
PSG.LGD did not go to ESL One Birmingham. Was it good to have some rest and scrim time? Or would you have preferred to keep the winning streak going there?
I personally think that it was a bad thing not qualifying for the last ESL. Also, Birmingham is also a good place to visit! It is good to have longer breaks between tournaments, but I think we shouldn’t take our foot off the gas pedal and slow down our pace now as we get closer to The International. And I think that my team would have played their best Dota at ESL One Birmingham just to get the MVP prize!
Haha. Everyone wants that Mercedes! But I agree, no point in slowing down. Supermajor will be on the new patch, 7.16. What do you think about it? Do you like it?
It seems like 7.16 is just a small patch update. I’m not sure, but I believe that the play style will be quite similar to the previous patch. I can’t really say I favor or hate this patch. I guess for now, I’m neutral.
Let’s go back a bit. Start of the season, you were playing with WG.Unity. How did the move to LGD Gaming happen? Were you expecting it or was it a surprise?
I was still playing for WG.Unity with a new lineup back then, but we were not doing too well. During that time, LGD was undergoing a roster change and they were looking for players to tryout. Ahfu from LFY, who I had played with in WG.Unity, suggested LGD to try me out. It ended up working well for me and the team!
Ahfu from LFY, who I had played with in WG.Unity, suggested LGD to try me out
So your old team made Ahfu had something to do with it. That’s nice of him! When you guys started playing with the new roster, things didn’t really connect immediately. But all of a sudden, finalists in a Major followed by winners of two Majors. What changed?
I think the difference was that when I just came into the team, everything was still new and we lacked experience playing together. The strategies were new as well. But as time went by, we got better. The most important thing was the bonds between all five players got a lot stronger. With the new found friendship, I think it was easier for us to improve and play together because of our deep understanding between each other. I wouldn’t say losing in the grand finals of DAC 2018 was a bad thing for us. We actually learnt a lot from the loss and it also triggered our hunger to win a Major as DAC was unfortunate and just one step away from victory.
I wouldn’t say losing in the grand finals of DAC 2018 was a bad thing for us
Interesting perspective! Love it. In your transition from SEA to China, do you feel a big difference in the style of Dota?
Think the level of competitiveness and standard is the same, but SEA is more of aggressive in running around, China is more focus on team fight
Controversial question. There were a few people that blamed you and Chalice for the loss in the DAC finals, saying you were inexperienced. Was that hurtful? How did you take it?
You can’t avoid these sort of people from flaming or blaming you. I think you just need to live with it. I personally don’t feel anything emotional about it. I just take the negative comments as room for improvement so that I am constantly motivated to learn and play better the next game!
I just take the negative comments as room for improvement so that I am constantly motivated
There is a lot players can learn from your attitude! On the whole, did you like the format of this season? Many tournaments with so many patches
There are a few things I like and few I don’t. What I like about this format is there are a lot of Minors and Majors to participate in. It opens up a lot of opportunities for rising teams to qualify for LANs. Some of the things I don’t like about this format is that the schedule is really tight and there are patches right after a tournament. Teams barely have time to practice on a new patch or even have a short break because there are only a few days in between the tournaments. Most days this season, we were just traveling to compete.
It definitely can get hectic traveling so much. Any particular team you’re looking forward to playing at the Supermajor?
For the Supermajor, I think I would want to play against Virtus Pro again. I really liked VP a lot because I believe that our style is quite similar and they always look strong.
Virtus Pro and PSG.LGD are no doubt the top teams for now! Would be great to see you guys play VP. What are your plans after the Supermajor?
After the Supermajor, we will have a short break so I’ll probably be going back to Malaysia to get my visa issues sorted out. Then comes the bootcamp and metal preparation for TI 8!
What is your life outside Dota 2? What do you like to do?
I love sports a lot. I used to be an ultimate frisbee player, so when I’m free I’ll probably go out to play. If not, I love to hangout with my friends, sometimes go for a movie. I also love karaoke or going for a trip.
Ahh, so you karaoke? We should go for that in Vancouver after TI 8! Any shoutouts?
Yeah, I just like to have some fun and relax singing out loud! As far as shoutouts go, a big thanks to our sponsors and all the fans who have supported us in our journey and are always there for us.
Thank you so much for your time xNova! And all the best for the Supermajor!