" Forsyth was kind enough to sit down for an interview with Esports Heaven. In this interview, PyrionFlax talks about his limitations on doing few events every year, coming up with the idea of hosting an after show party with Slacks, TI9 being held in China and more.
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Hey PyrionFlax. Let's get right onto it. You've been a talent in Dota 2 since the early days. How far do you think Dota 2 has come along in the past few years?
All the production companies involved - like ESL, PGL etc - have come a long way. They have a lot of people working there now just to manage talent etc which makes a big difference.
It doesn't feel like it's thrown together - everything is managed for you from getting to the event, getting transport to the venue, food, even clothing.
It's very professional compared to the old days when we felt like people didn't really know what to do with us, or gave the job of looking after talent to the most junior person there.
Like it was an afterthought or something. But really they just didn't have the manpower.
You're doing few events in Dota 2. You've appeared in every TI since 2014 in one role or the other and yet you're doing only 2-3 events in a year. Why is that?
In short: kids. I have two kids and I am the one who looks after them most of the time since my wife has a real job. Less time = less events.
You stream a lot and I've seen you streaming other games besides Dota 2. Does it take the fun out while playing a particular game over a long period of time?
Not with Dota. Seems to be one game that I can play over and over and I guess 7000+ matches is proof of that.
You gained initial recognition through "PyrionFlax's Guides to Dota 2" before joining Yogscast. Why did you stop doing guides as well as what is Yogscast all about and how do you contribute over there.
Stopped the guides because the whole point of them was I knew nothing about Dota so they were from the perspective of someone new to the game. Now I am clearly no expert but when you've played as much Dota as I have it's hard to pretend to be a noob.
You hosted the Pub after series at TI8 alongside DJWheat last year. That was a refreshing segment for an event of such a huge magnitude. How do these different segments help in adding value to a particular event? Also, who came up with the idea?
I think it was Valve's idea but people like me and Slacks had been asking them for years to let us do an after show that had a more relaxed and fun feel. When a tournament as big and serious as TI happens it's exhausting for the viewers as much as for the people working the event.
I think if all the coverage treats the event as 100% serious it would get old very quickly. You need a break to remind you it's just a game sometimes and to have a laugh.
You think something similar should be done for events other than TI as well? If yes, then why don't tournament organizers put that in motion?
No idea. I think it probably comes down to cost honestly.
Let's come to TI9 and the DPC season in general. You think a TI should be held in different countries every year rather than restricting it to one place?
I like the idea of a touring TI because people react really well to Dota events when they aren't used to having them in their country - look at Birmingham for a prime example. The crowd were amazing because they hardly ever get to see Dota in the UK. That's true of all the countries out there that love Dota.
The 2018-19 and 2019-20 DPC doesn't have any difference, unfortunately. Not only has the number of Valve certified events gone downhill but also the money invested along with it. Yes, there are third party events as well but do you think there should be more events for DPC?
I honestly think that's a question for the players. I don't know how they feel about the current DPC system.
Another concerning factor is the overwhelmingly huge prize pool of a TI that overshadows every other event. This in turn has directly affected the tier 2-3 scene and more players are being discouraged to take up Pro Dota. Your thoughts on this?
I do think too much money going on just one event a year makes the whole scene lop-sided. You need to make it worth it for players and teams to commit full time to Dota. The more good teams there are, the more hype the tournaments get.
I'd love to see more money filtering down to tier 2-3 teams and beyond.
It is similar for the upcoming casters as well since events have dwindled and the opportunities along with it. Event organizers are rarely giving a chance to newcomers and we see the scene dominated by similar lineups every now and then. Is this healthy?
There are definitely enough events to go around. I also disagree about events not giving newcomers a chance - there have been plenty of new people in the last few years who are working Dota events.
The question you have to ask essentially is - are they good enough to break out? If there is someone really good out there, they do get discovered. Look at ODPixel.
Also if people want to get the chance to cast Dota there are lots of non-pro events out there. Work hard and it'll come - if you're good.
What possible solutions can you think of that Valve could implement to improve the conditions?
I don't think it's a Valve issue honestly. It's the job of organisations and for the people trying to make it to find each other one way or another.
What do you expect to see from TI9 in terms of competition from the attending teams? Which region is most likely to lift the aegis?
Has to be China with the home advantage. Their crowd will go WILD. I think this TI will be one of the closest ever honestly.
Pick your top 4 teams for TI9!
That's tough. Secret, VP, EG, Liquid, Vici Gaming, PSG LGD. That's the top 6 and they all look insanely good. I think Alliance could really surprise some people at this TI, they have improved all year. Also it would be silly to write off OG.
Alright that's a wrap. You'd like to say anything before we sign off?
Thanks and I hope to see everyone at TI.
If you would like to know more about my work, you can follow me at KarY.
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Headline image courtesy: SLTV