posted by EskayDota,
We start with humble beginnings. Off the back of Troels 'syndereN' Nielsen’s Escape Gaming, three members of the team began again alongside Kalle Juhanpoika 'Trixi' Saarinen and Kai 'H4nn1' Hanbueckers. Many will remember Trixi, H4nn1 and Adrian 'Era' Kryeziu from the days of Johan 'BigDaddyN0tail' Sundstein being on Fnatic. The trio were reunited alongside syndereN and Max 'Qojqva' Broecker to form a European powerhouse.
This team was destined to be a fan favourite. Synderen on a team was always going to be a liked one, but one that echoed the history of n0tail and Tal 'Fly' Aizik’s friendship was one that pulled in more fans from far and wide. Sadly, the dream team didn’t really last too long. They had a slow start, and failed to qualify for either Elimination Mode 3.0 or DAC 2017. Synderen quickly left the organisation.
Being together for just three months, we saw some exciting games and just a handful of victories. Despite being picked up by the Ninjas in Pyjamas organisation, it was not enough to keep the roster resilient. Synderen’s replacement was then a lesser-known Aydin 'INSaNIA' Sarkohi, who lasted just a month and a half further with the team, before their total disbandment.
Echo... Echo.... International
One of the weirdest teams to ever come from any shuffle was Echo International. Featuring Anathan 'ana' Pham, Wong Hock 'Chuan' Chuan, Martin 'Saksa' Sazdov, Sang-Don 'FoREv' Lee and Grigorios 'Keyser' Kallianiotis, it pulled in fans from just about every region. Saksa from his time in North America, Ana and Keyser for their time in Europe, Forev for his time in SEA and Chuan for his time in China, Echo International was easily the most international, high tier, Dota 2 team to form yet.
Their debut game was a messy one, but a victory nonetheless. Not much was known about Echo International, other than that they were owned by Echo Gaming, a Chinese organisation. Coming together in February 2018, the team began by entering open qualifiers to find their footing.
Surprisingly, despite the ridiculous calibre of players they possessed, they struggled to find results even in open qualifiers. After a few months of trying and failing, the roster disbanded sharpish. The team didn’t make it to a single competition. Some would argue that their poor performances were a result of their very international team, and communication must’ve been a key factor in their performance results.
The fact that they never made it to a competition was of course, a disappointment to the fans, as nobody really even got to watch them play. Poor performances in open qualifiers often meant that their matches were scarcely even streamed, so to even find their games was a struggle. Perhaps some more time together would have rectified this issue, however it clearly wasn’t viable at that point in these players careers.
Most recently, Tigers
If anyone had told you in the prime of Natus Vincere that Chai 'Mushi' Yee Fung, David 'Moonmeander' Tan, Danil 'Dendi' Ishutin and Theeban '1437' Siva would be playing on a team together, it would be one of the most anticipated moments of the future imaginable. Some of the biggest and decorated names the scene has to offer, joined by a support mastermind of Kenny 'Xepher' Deo, the roster was destined to be the best of the best.
But of course, we know how the story goes. The team lasted just a single month before the roster changed. Tigers didn’t find their feet, but why? Was it simply a similar situation to Echo International? Or were there more issues at hand. Regardless of the reasoning, the team failed to reach the success one would have expected – but calling it quits within the first month? That’s something else.
Mushi sought opportunity elsewhere, looking for his success on the equally-all-star roster of Team Aster. With his departure, just one month further down the line came the departure of MoonMeander, and the team that would have excited hundreds of thousands was no more. It must be mentioned that Dendi , Xepher and 1437 are still of course, very talented players, Tigers just simply isn’t the team people had originally hoped for; not necessarily a bad thing for watching good Dota, but disappointing nonetheless.
There have been a handful of incredibly promising rosters over the years that fail to find their success for any number of reasons. It’s a part of the ever changing landscape of the game we love. Some will stagnate after years of being together, and some, months. It’s rare that a roster finds their stride within the early days of their formation, but in a scene as do-or-die as Dota 2, a month can mean the difference between a life-long career or complete obscurity.
Header image credit: Valve