+SSG+LazerGunz took some time out to pick Congo’s brain about Dota, life and the future of South African eSports.
1. So you’re most well known in the SA E sports scene as being a dota2 caster. Could you tell us a bit about yourself and your gaming background?
I’ve been involved in gaming for about 9 years now. It started with the odd CS LAN here and there and then eventually ended up online. At first I hated Dota… I didn’t see the point to it and I was (still am) pretty bad. However, I never stopped playing and last year I stumbled upon casting which is was all I’d ever wanted in life and more. I love to talk and I love Dota, it was a match made in heaven.
I’ve decided next year to take a break from my studies and try my hand at a professional eSports career. It’s going to be tough but with the support of my followers I think it’s going to be a fantastic year and hopefully a step in the right direction for eSports and myself.
2. Have you ever played dota2 competitively? And why casting instead of playing?
When Dota 2 first came out myself and a few friends made a team to compete in the very first few DGL competitions. We called ourselves KPOP.LEGS.RU and the team consisted of Numb, xeRa, seeM, DaekinHO and myself. I guess that was my only touch of competitive Dota because shortly after creating the team I joined Noxville as a cocaster and apparently I did quite well. I was told to keep at it and eventually left the team, which in turn did them a whole world of good since the reformed team (now known as Energy eSports are number one in the country)
I chose casting instead of playing because, and please excuse my arrogance, I’m a lot better at casting than I am at playing. I’m sure if I put the time in I could compete but then I wouldn’t be able to achieve my goals that I have set for myself and the South African eSports Community.
3. You’ve partnered up with some very well known brands namely steel series and others, what do you think about the recent willingness of big brands to invest in local e sports teams and personalities?
I think it’s fantastic! The opportunities which have been created in the last 8 months due to their involvement have definitely shed a much needed light on the South Africa gaming scene. Steelseries are fantastic and have really gone out of their way to help me in my career thus far. The more interest these companies show I feel will create competition between competing brands, which means bigger and better prizes for tournaments and a bit more leniency with regard to sponsorship of up and coming teams/personalities.
4. With energy e sports going to Paris to play in the ESWC, South African e sports seems to be getting some international recognition. The future of SA e sports is looking quite bright, what do you think the future holds?
I think in the next 2-3 years we will definitely have a team competing in all the major leagues around the globe. It’s already starting with some of the top teams entering Big Point Battle, Eizo, StartLadder, etc. With more active involvement from sponsors we could even see a team being sent to more competitions such as DreamHack and who knows, eventually The International.
5. Recently you’ve been casting some pretty high profile International games with some well-known personalities, for what other big events can we expect to hear that familiar South African accent in the near future?
I’m hoping to partner up with a very well known broadcasting studio next year, I can’t say which one just yet, but it all depends on my internet situation next year. I’ve loved working with the other guys as a co-commentator but I am first and foremost a play-by-play guy so it will be nice to have my own shop set up inviting some well known players to join me. I’m looking to get more involved in the European leagues as well as SEA/Asia. I plan to stay away from American leagues for as long as possible, I’ve been told those people will chew me up and spit me out.
6. What’s the most memorable moment for you from this last year of gaming and why?
It’s a strong tie between game one of the DGL Championship grand final when Energy rushed up mid to take the game, those who remember the game will tell you I was going crazy, hearing the crowd shout as well was an amazing feeling.
Second would have to be the launch of the Rival, new Steelseries mouse. It was a global launch with a sizeable crowd (all wanting free stuff) but the feeling of being involved in something that big was unparalleled.
This all happened at rAge so we can sum up rAge was pretty awesome.
7. Who’s been the coolest e sports personality you’ve encountered be it online or in real life and why?
I’d have to say LD, he’s really such a great guy and the few times I have spoken to him he’s been very helpful and always has time to chat. Blaze is also really awesome! I love shoutcasting with him!
8. If you could cast with any other of the well known dota2 caster who would it be?
James ‘2GD’ Harding, hands down. I’d like to be next to him in matching leather bound couches drinking 12 year old Scotch and smoking a cigar while shoutcasting.
9. As a guy who’s managed to get known and heavily involved in casting, do you have any tips for any budding casters out there?
Just keep at it, cast every pub game, every scrim you can. Gather as much feedback as possible while improving where you can. Figure out your strengths as early as possible and for the love of God be exciting to listen to.
10. So what can we expect from Congo in the near future?
I’m going to be taking on a few more titles. I love Battlefield so I’m going to try put a dent in that. I’m also planning doing some CS:GO but my main focus will be of course Dota 2. I’m also eventually going to start adding more videos to my YouTube channel and I’ll be doing a lot more streaming too!
11. Would you like give any shout outs and let people know where they can find you and find out when you’re casting?
As always, shout out to my pubstomp crew. Hurley, Craolia, PooKs, Dept, DisappoinT, KyleKY, HasH and all the ones I’ve forgotten and a special shout out to xeRa.
12. Thanks for answering my questions, have a radical day! 😀