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Grubby interview: "I try to have the most positive effect on the entire game outcome"

Artem Uarabei

Grubby has been something of a legend in esports throughout his career, dominating not one, but two RTS games and building up a reputation as a crowd favorite. I had the opportunity to ask Grubby a few questions in what I thought would be a quick, fun interview. Fun for sure, but not quick as he delivered above and beyond what I was expecting.

- What triggered your shift from Starcraft to HoTS?

- It was several reasons combined. The main reason was that I personally didn't enjoy StarCraft as much anymore as I used to. Since 2003, I've always maintained that my biggest strength for WarCraft III (and then StarCraft II) was boundless motivation, and that I wouldn't be continuing to play so much if I didn't truly enjoy it. Once I looked into the mirror and realized that it was no longer the case, I realized I could not perform so well under those conditions.

Secondly, I didn't look forward to each day knowing I'll be practicing or streaming SC2, whereas when I tried out Heroes I completely found a new enjoyment again which reminisced of WarCraft III. The joy of playing a kind of new genre, a new game but with all the old familiar characters from the Blizzard universe, gave me the idea that I will play Heroes for a while and see how it goes. I really enjoy it, and streaming it, and I can uniquely share all things that I discover about the game with my stream viewers, unlike when I had to keep such tips to myself for pro-gaming benefits.

- Are you content with streaming and not playing competitively?

- I was content with playing competitively, although there were some (very worthwhile) sacrifices made over the last 12 years of it. Streaming more is a new dimension of enjoyment.

I already enjoyed streaming interspersed between the more serious, actual practice schedules that I had. But now I can stream a lot more, and it's more enjoyable because I have non-stop interaction with my viewers instead of seeing some of them every now and then at a tournament.

- You've mentioned that you aren't playing competitively because you don't have a team.

- Well, Heroes is a 5v5 game, you can't play competitively by yourself. That's the literal truth, hehe. I had a brief stint of trying out a competitive team beginning of 2015 with some Greek & Dutch friends, and it was very interesting and helpful as the Greeks were also ex-LoL players who explained some core mechanics about MOBA's since I had never played any.

However, I think much of the competitive success of a team comes from extreme consistency and very limited player rotations on the roster. This seems quite hard at the moment if you don't have a set of old friends with whom you've played together for a long time. LucifroN and VortiX form a nice solid base for the Team Liquid team, for instance and some members of Tempo Storm in NA has been together since April 2014.

Starting afresh with relative strangers on a team now would be quite a serious challenge. Having said that, I'd love to have some more competitive experience in Heroes, maybe there will be a chance in the future to sub for a team or some such.

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