Now, in an effort to shed some light on the enigmatic team, aspiring shoutcaster Christian 'Epi' Czech (whose website you can find here) has taken it upon himself to interview the team's main carry player. Kurtis 'Aui_2000' Ling, and has kindly shared the lengthy and very interesting read with us at joinDOTA to exclusively publish.
Aui_2000 looking cool, presumably owning
Epi: Welcome to a joinDOTA exclusive interview with Kurtis 'Aui_2000' Ling, member of POTM Bottom, the catchy clan tag that has caused quite the uproar in the current Dota 2 scene. Kurtis, thank you very much for accepting this interview.
Aui_2000: Thanks for taking the time to interview me. *Smiles*
Just before we start: What are you currently doing besides Dota 2?
I just finished my second year of post-secondary at the University of British Columbia.
What are your plans for the future?
Ideally I'd like to do something awesome with Pro-Gaming in the near future. *Smiles* As for future long term career options I'm leaning towards going into law.
'Aui_2000'; where does that name come from?
I just created the name when I first played StarCraft in 1999. Essentially, my sister created an email account with the name Aiur in it - the Protoss homeworld in StarCraft - and, being seven years old, I wanted to copy her.
However, the thought process of my seven year old mind dictated that a straight copy would be really uncool so I should flip the middle letters and drop the 'r'. The 2000 then came because the millennium was coming up and that was going to be the coolest year ever. Since then, the name just somehow stuck with me.
Alright, quite the exciting past few days for your team: not only did you take out Quantic Gaming [in the ProDota2 League], but also Counter Logic Gaming [in the It’s Gosu Monthly Madness tournament] in an action packed and close best-of-three series. Both of the teams you took down are household names in the current Dota 2 scene. How do you feel after such accomplishments?
Well I think it goes without saying that taking down such great teams feels amazing. Those wins have really boosted our team's confidence and motivated us to continue to work towards improving our play.
Talk a little bit about what went on in your heads after the second game against CLG?
I'm not going to lie and say that we were perfectly calm after losing game two in such a convincing fashion, but we knew that we had what it took to win game three as long as we picked heroes that we were comfortable with. Therefore, our mentality after game two was pretty good - I think once the game started the team was able to completely ignore what happened in game two.
This is one of the many things teams have to learn how to do: accept defeat and move on. This seems more of a trait of experienced and well bonded teams. Now, it's no secret that for the larger part of the community, the name "POTM BOTTOM" basically came out of nowhere. Where does this name come from? Does it have any special meaning?
Long story short: one game there was a Priestess of the Moon [known solely as Mirana in Dota 2] on the other team who kept going bottom. So we said to "kill the POTM bottom" and Black^ (now on Mousesports) and Fogged kept saying “POTM bottom” for the rest of the game. We later had to decide on a team name for GosuGamers and sort of just randomly selected that.
Could you please tell us a little bit about each member and their respective backgrounds?
Fogged: 22 year old American. Plays the 2 role and comes from a DotA/Heroes of Newerth background. He really, really hates it when people take the courier from him.
Waytosexy: 18 year old Canadian, plays the 5 role and comes from a Counter Strike: Source/HoN background. Wayto is the team's token idiot.
Sneyking: 10 year old American that plays the 3 role and comes from a DotA/HoN background. Known for getting one viewer for each year of age on his stream. Just kidding; I think he's 17 years old.
Kizzles: I think Kizzles is 18 years old. He's an American that comes from a HoN background and plays the 4 role on our team. Kizzles is my minion.
As for myself, I'm a 19 year old Canadian who comes from a StarCraft II and DotA background. I play the 1 role on our team. I think I'm most known for making people use really unconventional item/stat builds.
Unconventional builds indeed. In one of the games against CLG, you showcased an item/skill build on Broodmother that would make some public teammates think they have a noob on their team. Yet, you pulled that unconventional strategy off to massive effect. Could you elaborate on your reasoning behind that? Is that your normal way to play Broodmother?
Yes that's my normal way to play Broodmother. My skill build is to only get 3 in Spawn Spiderlings unless I'm doing really poorly and need to spam someone out of lane with the spell damage instead of Spiderling summons (so basically only against Tidehunter or Darkseer). This is because levels three and four of Broodmother's nuke both cause three summons to spawn, which is really what is important from the nuke.
As for item build, I really dislike most players’ choice of going for a quick Orchid Malevolence or Black King Bar on Broodmother. There are a few reasons for this: Number one being the fact that a Broodmother with an Orchid is still relatively easy to gank, and even a BKB is not as good as a Manta Style for avoiding ganks and stretching out opponents, as Manta makes her reach almost haste speed in her web, and allows her to dispel of a lot of debuffs such as Dust of Appearance, Track and Amplify Damage.
BKB/Orchid doesn't allow Broodmother - a hero who is supposed to pretty much be power solo farming a lane and a few jungle camps - to be a ticking time bomb in terms of carry potential, where if left alone she will completely control and destroy every team fight. Furthermore, a BKB and/or Orchid Broodmother accomplishes relatively little in terms of pure damage in team fights/skirmishes, meaning that she cannot really be the main carry.
Finally, Manta allows Broodmother to slowly push into the tier 3 towers and barracks, whereas other builds tend to stagnate once the tier 2 tower goes down.
People tend to play Broodmother only as a split push hero, but I think that her straight battle potential can be also be really high with two or three damage items before a BKB, and no Orchid because a buff of 512 movement speed, an additional 100 damage, 80% lifesteal, and constant a 40% slow on a hero is probably one of the scariest things to go against in Dota 2.
The reasoning behind your Broodmother build is very interesting and completely goes against what people would consider the standard build. Are there any other things in the current Dota 2 scene that you disagree with that people take for granted?
There's actually a lot of things I disagree with. I like to try to take a very mathematical approach to Dota 2, as I took a similar approach in Starcraft 2, and that worked really well - well, math doesn't lie so that shouldn't really be a surprise.
For starters, I think that Vanguard is possibly the worst item on ranged heroes in the game. I sigh every time I see a Death Prophet, Necrolyte, Razor, Viper, or Dragon Knight with Vanguard. Instead, I think that Mekansm is the way to go on those heroes (except for DK), even for heroes like Viper and Razor, which - while a bit out of the box - is 100% definitely the better item choice for both the carries and their team. Vanguard is just such a bad item because of the fact that it damage blocks before armor reduction is applied.
I also don't like how pretty much every team plays Enchantress, as I think they sacrifice a lot of that hero's mid and late game potential for the chance of having one more creep for pushing a tower.
And I really dislike Pipe of Insight on carries such as DK, Death Prophet, Necrolyte, as it just doesn’t give any stats or damage, and think that going for a BKB as the first item on a carry is usually sub-optimal (although in ultra specific situations and heroes it can be necessary).
So is the way you played Enchantress against CLG the way you think she ought to be played?
I think we weren't quite able to fully show our Enchantress style in that game, but the skill and item build was what we think is best (Power Treads, Drum of Endurance, Aghanim’s Scepter, mass stats).
Regarding your dislike towards a BKB rush on Shadow Fiend, do you instead go for a fast Blink Dagger or something completely different?
I think a build revolving around Treads, Drum and Manta is a lot better than a BKB rush. The problem with a fast BKB is that as your charges go down, you are either sacrificing a later 2000 gold or mid and late game potential with the short BKB. Of course, there are still games where one should rush a BKB and it can be really effective.
So you go Mekansm on Viper? How does your typical Viper item progression go then?
Treads, Ring of Aquila, Magic Wand, Mekansm, Aghanim’s Scepter, Manta Style is my usual progression. The order of the first four is situational, but usually I complete all of them. With those first four items and a Point Booster to start Aghanim’s, Viper is probably the most tanky mid game hero in the game.
Do you encounter any mana issues on the way?
No, as Wand, Aquila and the Tread swapping give you more than enough. The swapping in particular is really important. Moreover, teams usually have at least one pair of Arcane Boots. The early Mekansm on Viper allows your team to push all the tier 1 towers pretty early as well.
If we go back to your best-of-three against CLG, one fight at the Roshan pit comes to mind where their Sand King had positioned himself perfectly to use Epicenter and then blink in on your team, but you guys drew the fight away from the pit and through intelligent movement and coordination, won that fight to secure your advantage. That makes us wonder, who calls the shots?
For that particular fight I don't recall anyone really calling anything specific other than Fogged saying that he stopped the SK from blinking. I think pretty much all five of us made small calls during that fight.
PB tends to make a lot of calls as a team, which has the downside of making our Skype a bit hectic, but we have a rule of thumb: "listen to your teammates, and if it’s a bad call, at least you have something to learn from rather than a missed opportunity" (not listening would be a double mistake of sorts, as we both can't learn from the mistake and we lose getting a potential advantage in game).
That is actually one of the better philosophies I've heard. I guess it requires a certain level of maturity from everyone to make that work, though. How often do you guys train and how long have you been playing Dota 2 together for? And are there any sponsors in sight?
We play pretty frequently, usually daily - well a lot less since the release of Diablo 3, but we're sort of playing that together too so I guess that's like team bonding practice. Wayto and Sney have been playing together for three years, Fogged and I joined them 2-3 months ago, and Kizzles was our most recent addition a bit less than a month ago.
As far as sponsors go, we've had a couple of offers and will hopefully come to a satisfactory agreement with one of those already offered or a future one.
With such promising performances coming out of your team as of late, I am sure eSports organizations are interested, to say the least. One last question though: what’s your favorite hero to stomp public matchmaking games with?
I usually just random in pubs, but if I had to choose I’d probably say Broodmother, Lina, or Windrunner.
Okay, well that's it from me. Kurtis, thank you very much for this thought-provoking and fun interview! I can only wish you the best of luck in the future and in finding someone that helps to cultivate your teams' potential!
Thanks for giving the interview. *Smiles*
Any shoutouts before we wrap up, good sir?
Shoutout to my awesome manager dismek, rainbowstick, frenzy, uroboros, kayce, bumblebee, murs, mjw, Tides, Solace, Snoopy, NADotA, UBCSC and UBCDOTA, the Reddit and Team Liquid communities, and hopefully our fans if we have any already!
And also: I will begin streaming very soon, so please come check it out. See you there!
joinDOTA would like to thank Epi for his contribution. Don't forget to support him by checking out his work on his website, epicommentary.com.