Once feared as the top Dota 2 team in China, Invictus Gaming have since fallen off the map. After taking down Team Liquid in the opening rounds of The International 7, Invictus Gaming failed to win another series, falling to Newbee and LGD Gaming, en route to a 5th-6th place finish and denying the living legend, Xu ‘BurNIng‘ Zhilei, from hoisting the aegis once again.
Post TI7, BurNIng would leave the team, and this would start the downward spiral the team has been on since. Yang ‘END‘ Pu would come to take his place, but it was evident in their placements that the team wasn’t working. This resulted into them swapping Ou ‘Op‘ Peng with Xie ‘Super‘ Junhao, a move that never really resulted into anything significant, but was a sign that Invictus Gaming clearly were having a lot of problems.
XXs to mid
— Invictus Gaming (@invgaming) February 7, 2018
All of this culminated in Invictus Gaming revamping the entire roster prior to the lock period. Gone now was END and Op as Super went back to LGD.ForeverYoung. Coming in to replace the team’s cores were Sun ‘Agressif‘ Zheng, who placed 2nd back in TI5 with CDEC Gaming and Sun ‘Srf‘ Runfa, a relatively unknown Dota 2 player who had stints previously with IG.Vitality and ViCi Gaming Potential. Lin ‘Xxs‘ Jing also made the transition from offlane to mid to accomodate their latest move.
Late last week, Invictus Gaming staff member, infZzz, decided to shed some light on the team’s issues on Weibo. There, he talked about some of the problems the team had faced after TI7. He also talked about what happened behind the scenes during the chaotic transfer period.
You can read the original post here.
A Quick Summary
- OP had been underperforming, and Invictus Gaming decided it was best for him to take a break during the Chinese New Year so he can contemplate whether or not he wants to continue playing competitively.
- While Ye ‘BoBoKa‘ Zhibiao has indeed grown a lot over the past two years and that he has received a lot of praise for his play, he has been unable to maintain his form lately. He had talked to BoBoKa about this and discussed with their coach what kind of “special training” BoBoKa should undergo after the holidays so he can go back to the form he showed in previous tournaments.
- Lin ‘Xxs‘ Jing is very mature for his age and was very open to moving to the midlane after being asked. He also put in the extra time to practice in his new role at the team house instead of playing at home.
- Fu ‘Q‘ Bin has become the icon of Invictus Gaming after BurNIng. He urges fans to communicate with him directly on Weibo in case they feel that his performance is not up to par.
- END, who he referred to as Zyf, was unable to bond well with the team and this affected his performance. He feels like while END gave it his all, the team just couldn’t adapt well to his playstyle.
What’s Next For Invictus Gaming?
Invictus Gaming is looking forward to being competitive once again with their latest roster. They also gave IG.Vitality a chance to compete and turn things around, bringing back Yang ‘InJuly‘ Xiaodong, who has spent the past six months on a break and as an inactive player.
infZzz ended the post by posting his favourite photo of Invictus Gaming (pictured above) in 2017, before saying that the best thing to do now is to look forward.
Barring any surprise runs at the qualifiers or surprise invites, Invictus Gaming are set to make their Pro Circuit LAN debut and defend their title at DAC 2018.
What do you think of Invictus Gaming? Do you think they can rebound and compete against the top dogs of China and the rest of the world? Be sure to let us know your thoughts in the comments down below.