Imagine, if you will, just a normal guy who goes to college, hangs out with his mates at the beach and enjoys a drink or 2. He does his hair like any normal person and is a pretty funny chilled out bloke. Samuel Griffiths is everything I said above, however, Sam leads a not so secret other life of a semi-professional DOTA 2 player, who was recently spotted during an in house league and offered a spot on a professional team.
“Competitive DOTA is a lot more stressful, time consuming and forces you to pay a lot more attention,” explains Sam. This is expected in the competitive scene of any sport and this forces someone to push themselves to be the best player they can be. Sam’s role in his team shows how gruelling it can be playing.
“I play the 5th position known as support, although sometimes I was forced into the offlane or suicide lane simply because of my hero pool.” A support role in DOTA is there to support the team which involves keeping as much of the map open, moving between lanes and supporting the heros in that lane and making sure your teammates are playing smoothly.
The E-sport scene is taking over on a global scale at this stage, however Sam believes Australia is a long way away from making it big time in that scene. “It needs a large amount of investment from both sponsors and players. Right now we don’t have the investors willing to invest a large enough capital into any game in particular that will allow players to go competitive,” says Sam.
Countries like South Korea and China have invested in E-sports and those Countries have exploded on the competitive scene. Players in these countries are treated like royalty out in the public eye. In the recent international competition, the amount of viewers hit 1 million, watching the teams battle it out for 2.87 Million dollars. Sam is hoping one day in the future, E-sports will be Akin to other nationally recognised sports like Rugby League and Australian Rules Football.
Sam personally feels E-sports is a great thing as it allows people who are good at video games to achieve something, like if you are good at running you can compete in the Olympics. There is big money involved for people who play in it, and people like Sam who live in Australia should be able to compete too. There has been a recent influx of players due to the final release of DOTA 2 and this is allowing for these in house leagues to develop on fourms. At this stage it is the best way to get competitive in this country. As Sam turned back to his computer and returned to playing a friendly match it became clear that Sam has become very good, very quickly with his experience. People would imagine people who are that good would live in their mum’s basement and do nothing but play DOTA. Yet here was Sam, a normal person with normal interests dominating and getting a triple kill in the game he was playing.