(Dynamic duo: Capitalist and Blitz) My apologies for not particularly paying attention to the timeline. Moving on, you're one of the diverse personalities in esports. A commentator, a host, an analyst and an interviewer - you know it all. Tell the community the basic difference about these roles and what can one do to be better at it if they decide to make a go at it? So a play-by-play commentator is there to call the action and tell the story of the game. This means not only accurately hyping the moments that deserve hype but also crafting narratives that give the players’ successes or failures greater meaning and context than the narrowness of one action or one game would allow. A host is a greater storyteller, who weaves the individual stories of each team or even each player into an epic narrative that spans the whole tournament. Another role of the host is to smooth out the interactions of the panel while setting up each panelist for success. Sometimes this means setting up a panelist for a joke, other times it means giving an analyst the space to break down the points they need to. Different panelists have different strengths and weaknesses and your job as the host is to steer the discussion and direct that atmosphere of each panel to fit your panelists. The touch you have on the panel and the tournament’s narrative is subtle, yet constant. An interviewer is someone who can bring out the personality of the players and set them up to tell the stories they want to tell. You don’t want deep analysis from your interviewer. Instead, you want him to be a conduit through which we can access and televise the emotions of the victors, and sometimes the losers as well. An analyst is a guy who analyzes. Thanks for talking about it in detail. Let's talk about the new DPC season announced by Valve. From a pure casting point of view, the halved number of DPC events do not help new or aspiring casters in anyway as opposed to the inaugural season where chances were plenty for new talents to successfully break out into the scene. Even if we assume the number of third party tournaments will be significantly higher, how can we make sure the established talents aren't the only ones to be given preference? How can the scene develop if there is dearth in giving new talents a chance except certain events that are willing to take the risk? This is probably the segment that will make me sound like an asshole. After all, it’s in my own best interests to make sure established talent aka Blitz and myself, continue to get as many job offers as possible. That said, I highly recommend any new casters to try their luck at another game. I wrote a giant essay just now about esports lifespans and such, but cut it out to simply say that Dota has reached a peak as an esport. There is no shame in that. The talent pool has reached capacity. So, if Dota’s support system will only grow smaller from here, and the talent pool is full, where do newer talent expect to fit in? That answer to that is that you must be able to provide something unique and replace someone already in the scene. Not only do you have to be better than them, you have to demonstrate such a superior product that it will outshine people who have spent years growing a fanbase. Fortunately for some, LD and Merlini retiring opened a couple slots, but those slots are likely to be taken by established talent who previously didn’t quite make the cut. Hell, I’m hoping them retiring will secure me a slot at a TI main event. Just look at Trent. Trent is someone who’s grinded, studying thousands of games, has casted tons of tier 2 or 3 games. He’s funny, smart, quick-witted, charismatic, good looking and has a pleasant disposition. He’s been in the scene for years. He still isn’t “tier 1” talent, though he should be imo. (Tier 1 in this context means being essential enough to be invited to 50-75% of the year’s events). How is someone new expected to be able compete with that? In fact, why should they be able to? Surely, Trent has earned every single invite he gets in the future and I think there are very few people who would argue that someone newer should be invited instead. As long as current talent continue to meet or exceed the bar they set previously, and don’t decline in quality, there’s little reason to take their jobs away to subsidize another person. It’s not like working only 2 or 3 events secures someone financially for the year. That’s why I always try and tell new talent to only cast Dota if it’s purely for their own pleasure and not in hopes of securing a career commentating. The road to becoming a full-time commentator was already narrow years ago when I was trying to make it, and it’s only gotten harder and narrower since. Nowadays, you have to be very talented, work hard and even get lucky for potentially years just to have a chance. That answer is as honest as it gets and I think it sheds a good amount of light on things that most are unaware of. However, let's move on to the next topic. The pinnacle event -- The International 2018 -- is fast approaching and this time its going to be held in Vancouver, Canada. How excited are you about the change in venue and the reception the event will receive? Furthermore, what do you expect from this TI? Growing up in the Pacific Northwest, I’m well aware of what a great city Vancouver is, and it’s a great replacement to Seattle. You appear to be moving to a new place, at least that is what i deduce from our talks earlier. Are you shifting? I moved to Los Angeles for a couple of reasons. First, was that I’ve been living with my mom renovating a house for the last two years. With the house almost finished and school done for my girlfriend, it was time to get our own place again. She’s trained in special effects and wants to get into the industry so we moved near Hollywood so she has that opportunity. A lot of my friends live in LA, so it’ll be nice to have a social life outside of esports events. There’s even a few esports companies like ESL and BTS that I might get the occasional side gig as a result of being so close. This will be the first year that I try and diversify my talents into other projects as well as another run at some content creation. That concludes this interview. Thank you. Anything you'd like to say? I routinely get people who come up to me at events and tell me about how they followed me when I was at joinDOTA, or when I was casting with Toby freelance or even going farther back to the early days of streaming or casting HoN. I will forever be eternally grateful to every one of my fans who have supported me in this journey.