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With The International 2018 quickly approaching and more likely an extended period of intense training looming ahead of them as well, Team VGJ.Storm’s Avery “SVG” Silverman and Arif “MSS” Anwar held last night a joined AMA on the team’s Discord channel.

The two players spent a little over one hour answering to an avalanche of questions coming from their fans. Below you can find a selection of those that look particularly interesting.


Q: What is one hero you would want to be removed from Dota 2 completely?

SVG: Broodmother
MSS: Huskar


Q: What off-meta hero do you think will make a big showing at TI8?

SVG: Maybe Treant Protector or Crystal Maiden
MSS: Yeah, probably CM. There’s going to be another patch [at TI] I think so, it’s hard to say.


Q: What are your favorite Core/Support heroes?

SVG: Naga Siren and Elder Titan
MSS: Timbersaw and for support either Rubick or Tusk


Q: Do you guys have any tips on how to become better at drafting?

SVG: The best way to improve drafting is to watch good captains draft and try to understand why they pick the picks they do. So, look at a hero, then watch the replay and look at what they did with it laning, and style wise. Then understand why they picked it where they picked it and to counter what.  Also try not to overcompensate in any one area (i.e. don’t pick 5 team fighters or 5 single target heroes, or no stuns etc).


Q: MSS, do you prefer playing position 4 support do you miss the offlane?

MSS: I do miss position 3, the offlane, on occasion because I still like playing the heroes that are in the pool right now, but I think I’m way better on support 4 at this moment. It just feels way more natural and smoother for me. Especially because our  5th is SVG and I don’t need to buy wards.


Q: Excluding Roman who did you look at as other variants as well? And why you decided to choose Resolut1on?

SVG: We looked at several people we thought would be a good fit, ultimately Roman just seemed the most interested and believed in us as players, we also thought he was a beast of a player we could build around and incorporate his skills well. I’m not going to name specifically who else we looked at out of respect for their decisions.


Q: What were your thoughts on the NA qualifiers [for TI8], I’m sure you guys expected to qualify but did you guys expect to get the first slot?

SVG: It’s always hard to know who will come out of NA qualifiers since most matchups are very particular. We just wanted to make it to TI, 1st or 3rd didn’t make a huge difference I think, but we played well enough for 1st.
MSS: It was much easier than I expected it to be honestly


Q: What’s the best part about playing at The International, besides the money?

SVG: I’ve never played at one so I’ll see if its playing or the crowd+intros+music+lighting etc
MSS: I don’t know, everything is just amazing at TI. The atmosphere, meeting friends you haven’t seen in so long, the fans are always a treat and playing on the main stage is the most amazing thing you can ever do as a Dota player


What was your favorite TI from the past?

SVG: TI6 because my team had some hype games
MSS: Dota-wise none of them are my favorite because I’ve gotten last or 1st place below top 8 in everyone so far. I hope that changes this year. Entertaining wise, probably TI4 because a lot of my friends were there and it was my first TI


Q: Who do you believe is the most exciting up and coming player [at TI8]?

MSS: Topson (OG) and Dark (Keen Gaming)


Q: Is there a team that you consider to be your rival?

MSS: I’m just going to say EG because we have SVG, even though he has no beef with them


Q: Without revealing too much about your practice, is it just scrims and pubs for you guys, or do you make time to drill specific stuff too?

SVG: We do a lot of drills/practice things outside of games. I think many of the top tier teams do
MSS: Our coach Clairvoyance actually makes us do lane matchups and what not sometimes, outside of scrims and pubs. For the most part, it’s like 2-3 sets of scrims and pubs outside of it


Q: What do you guys think: should pros in Dota be like role-model for the casual players and act respectively

SVG: I think players do have some responsibility in being aware that their actions speak louder than others, but ultimately it’s up to Valve on how strict the rules are, and it’s not really up to players or the community to hold other players conducts directly, rather they should petition Valve if they feel it should be changed.
MSS: I feel like they should strive to be role models when they’re on camera and playing in tournaments and whatnot, but when you’re playing pubs it shouldn’t be weighed so heavily. I know many players that don’t enjoy pubs and usually act way more toxic in pubs as opposed to real games and in person


Q: Do you think Dota players should have a players association like CSGO just created or LoL has?

SVG: Players unions are very nice when they work, but they require some structure to be effective, and I’m not sure Dota has the same structure those games have as far as Valve’s involvement, so it might not work as well.


Q: Thoughts on new DPC next season?

SVG: I think that the new DPC season will be good for teams in terms of qualifying for Valve events, but weaker for most tier 2 – tier 3 teams in terms of playing in the other events.


Q: Are you guys going to play Artifact when it comes out or Dota only?

SVG: I might try it out. I used to play a lot of MTG and such so, I like trade carding games, but I doubt that I will try to go pro or anything.
MSS: I will definitely try it out. I need something to play on the side and I like card games.


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