Dota 2 right now is in a state of flux, and this makes it as enjoyable as ever for spectators. 6.75 hit the community last week, and it hurt. There was a ridiculously long list of changes, dozens of heroes were altered in some way, items were adjusted and even some core game mechanics were tweaked. This is also one of the reasons I chose to cover the match between SE and MYM this week, SE in particular are known for playing a strange style of Dota, using seldom-seen heroes such as Treant Protector, and I really want to see what they have been messing around with in this iteration of the game. MYM on the other hand are a team that have got themselves new sponsorship and they will no doubt want to impress their new backers.
- David "Reesion" Siekas
- Alexander "Pinoy" Pettersson
- Niklas "Wagamama" Högström
- Hampus "Mini" Olsson
- Olle "Fishbone" Sjöland Thulin
SE are yet to play any games in The Premier League, but fortunately I am able to use their performances in Starladder and the EG Dota 2 League to to get an idea of how they might do in this league. On paper it looks good for SE, they have been very impressive in Starladder. After joining the league as a replacement and starting at a 0-3 deficit, they went 10-2 in the rest of their matches, to haul themselves into a play-off spot and will now compete at the LAN finals. In the EGD2L, they have gotten off to a strong start, sitting 4-2 in games, and 2-1 in matches. Skanes Elit may not have the financial backing of a big name organisation, but it is truly hard to see it staying that way if they can keep up this run of form.
Skanes Elit are one of those teams that have a signature style. And the recurring theme of this style is the usage of Wisp. Mini's Wisp is quite sublime in all honesty, and SE know how to utilise the hero to it's fullest. In recent weeks many teams have been completely dismantled by the Swede's use of what is no doubt one of the most efficient and quirky gankers in the hero pool. SE have used him in conjuction with the increasingly popular Tiny as well as Juggernaut to great effect in many kinds of lineup. Even without a particularly aggressive draft aside from the Wisp and his partner of choice, the global presence that Wisp grants to the team makes it very difficult for the opposition. He creates large amounts of space for his team as heroes are scared to push out lanes on their own or even attempt to gank in small numbers because of the almost instant +2 that Wisp provides to a fight. MYM will need a plan to deal with this hero or they could be in serious trouble.
- Andreas "Balsam" Løchte
- Sylvester "LINK" Hoelgaard
- Alexander "CalculuS" Rathcke
- Max "qojqva" Broecker
- Angelo "THEneNo" Caula Gonzalez
- Marcel "Atze" Binz
MYM have not quite enjoyed the same level of recent success as Skanes Elit, but they have been posting solid results nonetheless. They posted a respectable score of 9-6 in Starladder, which placed them in 10th position, just missing out on a LAN final spot due to head-to-head results against Absolute Legends and Evil Geniuses. However, they were gifted a stroke of luck by both EG and the 3rd place Quantic, as they both pulled out of attending the LAN finals, bumping MYM into the top-8.
MYM as a brand name brings a lot of memories to people that have followed Dota as well as many other games over the years. Despite the organisation behind the name being completely different to what it once was, the name demands respect due to legendary squads of the past and these new additions to the family will want to extend said legacy. They will aim to write their own names in the history books in this new chapter of Dota's life.
As with last week's entry, I like to look back over the team's recent head-to-head history to get an idea of where they stand against each other because no doubt will those games be in the minds of the players when going into the match.
Last time around was only last week in this case. MYM and SE met each other in Starladder at what was a very important time for both teams. The online portion of the event was coming to a close and it was clear that both teams would be one of the eight that would fight for the six remaining slots after Moscow 5 and Empire locked up their own berths.
I will keep it short because the game, although entertaining, was not much of a contest. Both teams drafted very standard in the first phase of picks, with Naga Siren, Tidehunter and Venomancer coming out for SE, and Rubick, Enigma and Morphling for MYM. It was in the second phase when SE showed their hand. They picked up Wisp in response to the fourth pick Sand King, with Queen of Pain following for MYM and then Tiny on the side of the Swedes to complete the teams.
Rocking the Wisp-Tiny combo, Skanes Elit dominated the map and put MYM into a very uncomfortable place. Although MYM's lineup packed huge team-fight potential, it would prove to be too difficult to pull off in the face of constant disruption and ganking provided by the SE draft.
This time will be different than the last, I am sure of that. Firstly, the Premier League uses a best-of-3 format. This will allow teams to adjust mid-series and perhaps change their strategy based on the results of the previous game. I think this is one of the match-ups this week that will provide an early taste of how 6.75 is changing the competitive scene.
I mentioned earlier how SE like to run Treant Protector, especially in the off-lane and I would look to see him make an appearance in his newly reworked form. His global aura previously allowed him to have a global presence, assisting in through bonus armour and regen for his team. But his new incarnation allows him a more active presence throughout the early game without actually being anywhere near the action. Living Armor can provide bonus regen to a hero that is having a tough time in the lane and needs extra staying power, but the damage block is what makes this spell so good in my eyes. By offering a pseudo-Refraction to a hero he can save heroes on the verge of death and make diving enemy towers a much easier task to name just a couple of the many uses of this spell.
The new changes to banning order will also be very interesting in this series in particular. Many teams have opted to just ban Wisp in the first phase recently against SE, but that was pre-patch, would MYM be willing to stop Wisp in exchange for letting a traditional powerhouse like Dark Seer or Rubick through? Only time will tell. With an extra ban in the second phase, this allows more strategy-centric banning and targeted bans such as Wisp against SE in this case. However, SE have been known to take the hero in the first phase, as there are many heroes that it can partner with.
I think MYM will struggle in this series, they usually play it safe and standard, but when there is no standard to adhere to, I can see them having a tough time.
Skanes Elit 2 – 0 Meet Your Makers
Written by Jack