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13 reasons why we love OG

On November 20, the legendary captain Johan "N0tail" Sundstein left the OG Dota 2 lineup. Now it's obvious for sure: the era of old OG has come to an end. We decided to remember why we love the two-time TI champions. Polina Mashina experienced several times being blocked on “VKontakte” for spamming and interviewed more than 100 OG fans and casual Dota 2 players. Among them, you may recognize yourself.

1. N0tail's personality and unwavering will

As one of the best players on HoN, Johan went through some hell at the start of his Dota 2 career. After failing at Fnatic.EU, getting kicked out of Team Secret and falling apart at Cloud9 during TI5, Johan found himself in a difficult situation and was even ready to end his career.

After TI5 failure personally I was probably all-time low. It was one night I ended up vomiting and I thought about every loss. And every time I thought about the loss I felt even worse. It just kept going through the whole night. I think that was probably the sickest I felt in my whole life. I was ready to call it quits.

Johan "N0tail" Sundstein

But even after three unsatisfying TIs [bottom places with Fnatic at TI3 and TI4, then a top 9-12 at TI5 with C9], N0tail found faith in himself and built his team with long time friend Tal "Fly" Aizik. Thus began the era of (Monkey) Business, and then OG.

2. Scouting incredible talents

OG has unleashed the potential of many talented players for the Dota 2 community. This is the team where Miracle-, Cr1t, ana, Topson, and others have proved themselves. Even Ceb, whose career seemed to have ended by 2016, blossomed at OG, both as a coach and an incredibly cool player.

3. Trash-talk

If anyone is the king of trash talk in recent years, it's the OG players. For example, Ceb's comments about "other teams' place", the OG — Secret twitter wars, and other episodes. This team was able to turn voice lines from the chat wheel and seemingly harmless tips into an element of mockery of the opponent. And most importantly: OG’s insolence incredibly suits the team. But even if there were overkills, as in Ceb's case, the players corrected the situation with dignity.

4. Aggressive playstyle

Fountain and T2 dives runs to the woods by the fifth minute, and other risky actions are what we've come to love this team for. OG was called the second MVP.Phoenix, but it still has its own unique Dota. Vitaly "v1lat" Volochai even gave this phenomenon a fitting name — "ogmovism" [aggressive and active style opposite to "oblomovism", meaning indolent apathy. This term from I.Goncharov novel "Oblomov"]

5. Meepo, carry Io, and Morph-Shaker

OG brought a lot of unusual strategies to Dota, and it seemed that these guys weren’t afraid to experiment.

N0tail was remembered for his ingenious Meepo and Abaddon, ana for his Phantom Lancer and Ember Spirit. Topson was destroying opponents on the signature Monkey King, Pugna, and Invoker. JerAx was recognized as king of Earth Spirit, while Ceb was the best initiator on Axe and Magnus.

But the Wisp as the core is worth special attention [the OG has a 100% win rate on the pro scene with Io] and the Morph-Shaker combo. Although TNC Predator was the main abuser at the Chengdu Major, this combination appeared much earlier. Firstly, OG showed it at Moscow EPICENTER Major in 2019.

6. The buyback

One of the most striking "next level play" moments came during the phenomenal fourth map of the TI8 grand final against PSG.LGD, which was one step away from victory. With the scoreline at 1-2, the Chinese had a series of successful fights, smoked, and found ana, who had no buyback.

In the same second, the OG carry made 300 IQ move of three crucial steps:

— picking up a rune of gold and checking buyback status (+100 IQ)

— illusion scam (+100 IQ)

— selling Ring of Aquila and Talisman of Evasion (+100 IQ)

Ana's speed of reaction and courageous decision has changed the game. And the funny thing is that it happened on its own: none of ana's teammates even knew about the winning buyback until he told them the story himself.

7. Gyro Diffusal

It seems that words are unnecessary at this point. It's enough to remember what Topson did on the fourth [and final] map of TI9, and it worked perfectly against Windranger, Bristleback, and Omniknight. Surprisingly, the Team Liquid players didn't go into a tilt right after the match but instead rushed to discuss Topson’s genius decision.

It won them the game. He burned my mana, BB’s mana… He just was so good. This Diffu. Fucking Topson.

8. Friendship and family vibe

I asked some fans to describe OG in three words. And almost every answer had one of them: atmosphere, friendship, or family. Over the years, OG has convinced us that winning TI is impossible without absolute trust and respect for each other. "Win together, lose together, slay together" is not just a beautiful phrase from True Sight, but the real motto of this team.

9. Dramas of a level of the best Hollywood movies

N0tail and Fly met in Heroes of Newerth and have been friends since they were 14. They went through Fnatic and Secret together before forming OG. They were called brothers, but that all changed after a debacle at ESL One Birmingham, after which Fly and s4 left for the promising Evil Geniuses. TI8 was literally three months away, and N0tail had no choice: the team had to be built anew.

The drama that unfolded at TI is worthy of a screen adaptation of its own. OG, from whom no one expected anything, made it to the tournament and beat EG in the upper bracket semifinals. That N0tail look after the match we will remember decades from now. This is what sweet revenge looks like.

10. Miracle and emotion at TI8 and TI9

OG's path to TI8 is the story of the underdogs who made it to the top through their efforts, so it's impossible not to sympathize with this team. OG gave us the best True Sight in the history of Dota and incredible emotions. Ceb's motivational speeches made us want to move mountains.

[Before the fourth map of TI8 grand final] Alright boys, first game from best of three. Back against the wall. We knew we were gonna get tested, we are getting tested, for sure. This is a rough situation to be in, of course, but we’re gonna overcome it together, you know. It’s been too easy so far. You don’t get it like this, we saw that coming, we were ready for hard games, we were ready for hard series.

Welcome, this is a hard series. We know we are one game away, it doesn’t matter, we’re gonna go in, have fun, win the next one, and win the one after, it’s what’s gonna happen. We’re getting tested, embrace it. We know what they wanna do and all we have to do is do what we wanna do, that’s it.

[Before the lasr map of TI8 grand final] Take a moment, enjoy. Enjoy it, yes, enjoy. This is the game of our lives, man, enjoy. Game five, grand finals of TI, this is like, everything is gonna come together next game, everything. And it’s gonna be beautiful.

I want to play, I want to play play play, play Dota. We’re doing this, man, we’re doing this. You can do, you can fucking do everything. We’re doing it. Today is our day.

Sebastien "Ceb" Debs

OG's victory at TI9 made us believe that anything in this life is possible. Even to be the best team in the world twice with the people you care about.

11. Handsome players on the roster

I couldn't help but include this because most OG female fans [and not only them] count OG players among their crushes. N0tail, Ceb, JerAx, ana, Topson, and others are constantly featured in various tops of the most beautiful players. And who says it's just about appearance?

12. Fanbase and community

OG has a huge fanbase. Over the years, OG has become a supranational team outside of place, time, and lineup. At first, it was primarily Europeans, then MidOne and ana from the East appeared, and then Sumail, which was associated with the American scene for a long time. Now OG is entering the "CIS era", which is incredibly intriguing.

At the same time, people who have already become OG fans often stay with it forever because they are already a part of the family, and it is a custom in the family to accept new members with care and affection.

13. Players' personalities and charisma

The OG members have written their names in Dota history, but they also have a busy life outside the game. After his career is over, N0tail would like to work with dogs and provide psychological support, Topson has a family that he will devote time to, and the others have yet to decide how to proceed.

Something hints that such bright personalities will not disappear from the media space and will remind about themselves many times if not by the next comeback to the pro-scene, then surely by the cute photos and streams. Also, they are unlikely to leave their mutual child, the organization that has become their second home.

This isn't farewell. See you soon. Thank you for everything, legends!


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Fly Fly

N0tail N0tail

JerAx JerAx

Ceb Ceb

Topson Topson

ana ana

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