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CLG Dexter Tells All: Dexter Uncut



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On January 25th 2014, Leaguepedia had the pleasure of interviewing Dexter, who is currently jungling for Counter Logic Gaminglogo std.pngCounter Logic Gaming. His presence during Week 2 of the European LCS preluded the resolution of his visa situation by two weeks. During that time, we revisited his career back from his days in Luna Gaming, all the way to Season 4.

The analytical jungler was particularly reflective on the topics we visited. He shared his insights on his time with Lemondogslogo std.pngLemondogs, the reasons that allowed SK Telecom T1logo std.pngSK Telecom T1 K to conquer the world, as well as his hopes going into Season 4 alongside CLG (with MonteCristo at the helm of coaching).


  1. Career: Dexterisactuallyevil, DragonBorns - "I think [Cyanide] is one of the most inconsistent junglers, with the highest peaks of any jungle player."
  2. Career: LemonDogs - On Nukeduck: "When mid does extremely well, the jungle looks good as well. It goes both ways."
  3. Moving Forward: Counter Logic Gaming - "CLG is a completely different team with MonteCristo as a coach and me as a jungler."
  4. Peering into Dexter's mind: World of Warcraft and Riot Balance - "Some champions should be given quality of life changes to make them more viable."
  5. Peering into Dexter's mind: Thoughts about Progaming - "Are you willing to make sacrifices for yourself to take the next step and become a professional gamer?"


Peering into Dexter's mind: World of Warcraft and Riot Balance

How was the eSports environment when you were playing arenas in World of Warcraft?

World of warcraft logo.png

WoW doesn't really have a competitive environment. It was a toxic game to begin with. It was really hard to balance arena. When you played a specific class (I played feral druid), there was a time where Warlocks, Mages, or whatever class was completely overpowered. It took the developers six months to balance them. You had to play the season with those classes, and if you didn't want those classes, you would be at a great disadvantage. I don't think WoW was a good competitive environment, compared to League of Legends or Counter-Strike.


What would you say to Riot's developers, as far as the cycle of nerfs and buffs, and rebalancing competitive picks?

It's more like: some champions should be in the spotlight, then you have small buffs to other champions, such as ZiggsSquare.png Ziggs. Ziggs was in a really bad spot. Then, he got buffed, and no one cared. Then he got buffed again, and no one cared as well. After five of six buffs, people started to realize he was a really good pick.

At the same time, other picks got nerfed, like ZedSquare.png Zed. Zed would have destroyed Ziggs in lane, and you wouldn't be able to do anything against it. Now that Zed has been nerfed and turned into a situational pick (not 100% picked or banned anymore), Ziggs has a lot of the spotlight.

RiotGamesLogo.png

It's the same for other champions. Take OlafSquare.png Olaf for instance. As a jungler, he didn't have the spotlight for months, then Riot tweaked him. Now, he's a really good jungler. I expect Riot to balance the game in a way to keep it fresh, but some champions should be given quality of life changes to make them more viable. It happened to PantheonSquare.png Pantheon, with the W to minions. You can't have a game where there are 100 champions that are not worth picking.

I read something on Reddit, where someone referred to Magic: The Gathering. He was like: “You have 1.5k cards, just pick the best out of them,” and people started to take only 500. Those 500 were taken to the best players, and those players used about 200 of them. It's shrinking the pool. It's the same in League of Legends. Right now, in competitive LoL, you just pick the best champions possible. If you want to pick Shyvana top, she outshines everything there. Same for EliseSquare.png Elise in the jungle, she doesn't have any weaknesses, 90% pick/ban ratio across the regions.


That also brings me to the S3 to S4 balancing act. To the jungle in particular. Besides Olaf and Elise, which other champions do you see becoming stronger?

When the Season 4 patch hit the live servers, I tweeted that Kha'ZixSquare.png Kha'Zix and GragasSquare.png Gragas would be pretty broken. We just saw a lot of Kha'Zix in the LCS, and even a little bit of Gragas. With the Spirit Stone buff and Spectral Wraiths getting 80 Ability Power in the lategame, I think Gragas might be a really good pick, especially now that you have YasuoSquare.png Yasuo.

Yasuo has godlike synergy with [Jungle] Gragas. He doesn't need blue, which enables Gragas to farm it all day. Gragas can gank with his 1K range ultimate, and Yasuo can follow up on it. I think Gragas might see a lot of play in general, especially since Olaf got a minor nerf. Lee SinSquare.png Lee Sin is still good, of course. We even saw FiddlesticksSquare.png Fiddlesticks from Meteos, but I think that was just an experiment. I heard Dandy from Korea spammed MalphiteSquare.png Malphite at one point in competitive play, but we never saw it – I guess it didn't really work out for him.

I think the role that changed the most in terms of picks is Support. We have a lot more diversity now. People are picking GalioSquare.png Galio, MorganaSquare.png Morgana, AnnieSquare.png Annie, all those mage champions. We might see a lot of support changes as well.


Peering into Dexter's mind: Thoughts about Progaming


As far as you are concerned, there was an evolution in eSports between the past and the present. Did you first envision yourself getting into LoL eSports? What would you tell someone who wants to get into it? What is involved?

It's all about dedication. If you really want it, are you willing to make sacrifices for yourself to take the next step and become a professional gamer? Or are you a casual gamer, where you kind of want it but don't want to sacrifice things. You have to decide things for yourself: “Do I want to continue with school, study, do all of the normal life things? Or do you want to take a risk, play, and do what you love?”

At that point, I got the chance to play; I got the offer from Lemondogs, and I went all-in and practiced up to 10 hours a day. Right now, it's going to a direction where you can do both: You can play in the amateur scene, while also going to school. The best way to approach this progaming thing right now is to stay amateur as long as you can with a good team, create contacts – it's all about creating contacts, just meet a lot of good players, be good with everyone, and just play at a good level – then you can decide.

If you want to commit and go full-time, you just say “Okay, I'm going to quit school / pause studies.” If I had to remake the decision, I'd do it the same way every time. I would never look back and say “I regret doing this.” I actually got to do what I love. I traveled around the world, to America, Russia, Tenerife, and Sweden. I saw a lot already. I think it's worth it to experience this. I really plan on doing this for as long as I can.


Going forward, how do you approach LoL progaming? Gameplay-wise, evolution of the jungle, and as a person?

Dexter in the jersey of his current team, CLG

I approach the game by being smart and overthinking things. I really like to have my own opinion about things and I watch every region playing. I take notes from other players, see what I can do myself and improve as a player, while also practicing my mechanics. It's a really hard thing as a jungler: You have a lot of decision-making to do, and you have to keep your mechanics up somehow. If you just play jungle all day, you won't get amazing mechanics. I practice mid as much as possible in soloqueue to get mechanics down, and practice them more efficiently than a jungler, while also working on my decision-making in premades.

It's really really hard to get good at both mechanics and decision-making. For example, Bengi. He's not an amazing player mechanically, he has a standard level. However, his decision-making is so good, he outshines everyone. Then you have insanely mechanical players, like inSec. InSec was a highly mechanically-skilled player, his Lee SinSquare.png Lee Sin was regarded as the best. Or DanDy. But those players weren't very smart about decision-making.

The last game inSec played as a competitive jungler, he really lost the game by poor decision-making, and I'm not the only one who said this. He made up for this with amazing mechanics, so that he could afford not being extremely good decision-wise.

I want to find a balance between being good at decision-making and mechanics, so that I can afford to be the most consistent jungler in my region.


This is going to be the closing statements to the interview. Any shoutouts to whoever influenced your playstyle, influenced you as a person, or even sponsors?

Shoutouts to CLG who played for two [E.N.: now three] weeks without me. Shoutouts to our sponsors: Razer, Azubu, iBUYPOWER, and NZXT. Shoutouts to all my former teammates, former Lemondogs, especially Tabzz with whom I'm really good friends with – I just hope the best for him. I want to thank all the people who supported me, who were always there for me. My family was always there for me, they're really supportive. Everyone is going to watch my games in NA even when it's like 2 in the morning, and it helps a lot. Thank you.


Once again, we would like to thank Dexter for taking the time to participate in the interview. Be sure to tune in on his first game under the CLG banner on Sunday, February 9th, as he and his teammates will face Eglogo std.pngEvil Geniuses at 9PM CET / 12PM PST on LoLeSports.com.


Written by Adel Chouadria - @hypealgerian
Edited by Alexander Kirilov - @ROCCATMatteo


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