In the growing competetive Dota 2 scene of Southeast Asia, Team Adroit is a team that has been steadily rising to the top. VPEsports got a chance to talk with Team Adroit’s mid laner, Mc Nicholson ‘Mac’ Villanueva, where we spoke about the recipe behind Team Adroit’s success, the SEA Dota 2 scene and the current meta, amongst other things.
Hello Mac! How’s it going? How are the conditions in the Philippines?
Hello! Sadly, the cases in the Philippines are still rising. Filipinos are trying our very best to follow the rules to help prevent the spread of the virus. We are also hoping for a mass testing or vaccine.
Dire conditions indeed. Hopefully we can put all of this behind us pretty soon. Let’s jump to the Dota 2 happening online. How has it been going for Adroit in terms of practice? Is the team together or is everyone in their own homes?
As of the moment, Marvin (Boomy), our captain, is not with us in the boot camp as he has to prepare for his son’s upcoming birthday and spend time with his family, so he has been playing from home. Everyone else is playing together and practice about six times a week.
Team Adroit has been doing well recently, winning the WeSave! Charity League and finishing runners up in the ESL One LA Online leagues. What has made you a stronger team this season? Is being together as a team for nearly one year a big factor?
The major factor that has given our team a strong foundation is that we stick together irrespective of the results. The team learns from every mistake, loss or win. We’ve been teammates for more than a year now, and we treat each other like family.
That is a commendable way of going about things and something a lot of teams need to adopt. What are your thoughts on the current SEA Dota 2 scene? Professional and pubs…
I believe the SEA pro scene has grown to be a lot more competitive in the last few years. Right now, there are a lot of good, stacked teams. For pubs, not a lot has changed. You still find players that are toxic and considered as ‘cancer’, players that won’t adjust if they don’t get their desired role.
What are the current top three teams in Southeast Asia according to you?
As of now, Fnatic, TNC, Boom or Geek Fam are probably the top three teams in SEA.
What’s the next step SEA needs to take become as dominant as Europe or China in the Dota 2 scene?
Aside from creating or coming up with unique playstyles and strategies, I think SEA needs to be more consistent and disciplined, and I think we are heading in that direction.
How huge is Dota 2 in the Philippines? Is it the most popular esport?
Yes, Dota 2 is considered to be one of the most, if not the most, popular games in the Philippines.
Let’s talk about the current meta. Do you like the state of the game right now? What are your favorite and least favorite changes from pact 7.26 (all small patches included)?
I like how the creep bounties (including neutrals) were reduced which made teams prioritize taking team fights and objectives rather than just farming and delaying the game.
What about the mid lane? Do you like it right now?
Yes, the two minute power rune being taken out has made the mid lane balanced, unlike before. Earlier, if either of the players were lucky enough to get a Double Damage rune at the two minute mark, they could box out their opponent and the lane would become completely one sided.
Favorite mid heroes to play in the current meta?
Ember Spirit and Void Spirit, the spirit brothers!
I’m not sure they are brothers, we will have to ask SirActionSlacks for the lore! But yes, those two heroes seem quite popular and strong right now. When did you start playing Dota 2 and when did you realize you could make it as a professional?
I started playing around the year 2013-2014. It was a hobby, but then I started competing with some of the good players in our hometown and it made me realize that I have the potential to become a professional Dota 2 player.
Which Dota 2 teams and players of the past that you’ve idolized or are your favorite?
In teams, it’s Team Secret and as for players, OG’s mid Topson is surely an inspiration.
What do you like doing outside of Dota 2, when you’re not playing?
Not a lot. I like watching shows on Netflix.
Any other games you like to play?
I like playing CSGO. We play it almost every night after practice. Sometimes I play with the Dota 2 team, other times with the staff.
Thank you and stay safe. Any shoutouts?
Shoutout to my family, girlfriend, friends and the fans of team Adroit. Thank you for your unending support for us, I hope you will continue rooting for us.