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3 Things That Make a Great Esports Team

esports team
Darting back and forth attempting to get away from the pursuing team, the hero is in full retreat as enemies quickly pursue them. The enemy force is closing the gap quickly and is about to envelope the retreating hero. Suddenly, reinforcements arrive to save the day!

Jumping out from the brush, they make a barrier wall between the retreating hero and the enemy team in pursuit. A clash of epic proportions erupts as both teams slam into one another causing an eruption that lights up the screen.

Abilities come from every angle erupting heroes in lightning, fire and all other elements that scar the battlefield. Minions continue flowing into the frantic chaos of the skirmish, one after another, only to be cut down instantly by the ultimate attacks of the heroes.

The tides of war begin turning as the team who was originally pursuing the hero begins to press their attack. Suddenly, as if on cue, ability after ability chain together from the opposing team killing enemy heroes one after another.

Within mere moments, the field of battle has gotten cleared, and all that remains are the plumes of smoke emitting from the smoldering corpses of the enemy.

A display of great teamwork at its finest.

Today, you will learn about what it takes to be considered a great esports team. It is not simply just throwing some talented players together and hoping for the best. As an esports bettor, you will want to pay close attention to the details surrounding what qualities they must possess.

This Is My Team, There Are Many Like It, But This One Is Mine

Team-based games are all the rage within the competitive esports scene, and each member has their role to play. Every player is a cog in a machine, and each needs to work to their best ability to make the group function.

There is not one direct thing that makes a team great, but rather a combination of various qualities. The mixture of them together working in unison will be that which separates them from the rest of the competitive community.

Roster

The roster is an essential part when it comes to the overall success of the team. Whoever is currently sitting there will obviously play an intricate role in the success or failure of the competition. Therefore, having the right players ready to represent is essential.

Such an obvious statement, wouldn’t you agree? Gamers have a certain personality about them, and they are not always pleasant. Players are not just a representative of the current squad competing at the time, but of the overall franchise. Who is put out there as a representative of the brand can be either positive or negative.

The concept of filling a team with proper players who work well together is a lot harder than just finding a mixture of talented people. Every position needs to get filled with a person that is ready to handle it properly.

You will want to have a well-coordinated team that works off one another to compliment the playstyle of each person. Not everyone plays the same after all, and this proves especially true when it comes to hero based multiplayer games.

In games like Defense of the Ancients 2, the heroes have different strengths and weaknesses in certain roles, and it isn’t just simply, “Oh this character is really good.” It is far more complicated than that, unfortunately.

Let’s break down the forming of a “normal,” well-balanced DOTA 2 squad, and look at the criteria that goes into standard hero selection for most teams. Players will need to pick a team complimenting multiple roles. Some examples of the roles are:

  • Carries
  • Disablers
  • Durable
  • Escapers
  • Initiators
  • Jungler
  • Lane Supports
  • Nukers
  • Pushers
  • Supports

Heroes will have a mixture of these roles, and players will need a mixture that complements the abilities of one another to formulate what is considered a “well-balanced” team. That concept is something us commoners need to keep in mind.

Now, consider what professional franchises will need to apply in formulating an optimal team that can make them world champions. Just thinking about all the possibilities and thought that needs to get put into the compositions makes my head hurt.

Specific players will be better with certain heroes in comparison others. Therefore, figuring out which people will fill the roles on the roster will be the first step in creating a great esports team. Easier said than done, right?

Cohesion

Once a roster has its players on there to fill their respective roles, people need to develop a bond of trust. The team needs to establish that they can rely on their partners, which does not just happen at the snap of the fingers. Cohesion gets accomplished through trial, error and experience.

Cohesion is a rather important concept that needs to occur if a group wants to be truly successful in their battles within the competitive esports scene. A team cannot just be filled with people who decide to do their own thing.

Think about a situation that you have gotten involved in that has brought you closer to another person because of having gone through it together. Now, think about being asked about that exact scenario and having to recount the exact experience to someone else.

You try your hardest to give a good explanation, yet you can’t. It is difficult to explain exactly all the nuances involved with a specific situation that you went through to someone else. You will inevitably go with saying “you just had to be there.”

Don’t feel bad if you can’t explain a certain experience to someone who has not walked the same path as you. It’s hard to comprehend what someone has gone through if you do not have the same shared experiences.

Now, apply this to the world of esports and competing on the main stage in front of thousands of people. Every single move you make, the words you say, facial expressions and everything else is under a microscope while you need to play at a top-tier level.

You can’t explain what that is like until you have been there yourself, and to truly form a bond with a teammate, you need those experiences together. Just like a war zone when a recruit comes fresh out of boot; you can’t trust them because you don’t know them.

The bond is built upon experiences, and based on what you have gone through together, the deeper that bond will grow. Although we cannot possibly hold video game competitions and war zones in the same regard, they are their unique battles.

Leadership

The whole idea of leadership is thrown out there a lot. In the world of esports, those reigns will fall onto the shoulders of the team captain. They will be responsible for guiding, motivating, problem-solving and so much more. That is a very important role that cannot be filled by just anyone.

What exactly makes a strong esports captain? No one can negate the importance the role of leadership plays on a team. However, there is much more involved than simply telling people what to do and having them listen to you.

You can have the best players in the world who work together positively. When everything is going well, the team works great. You truly see what makes a leader shine when things go wrong.

How they react to the situation can lead to the success or failure of the team. That is one reason that experience plays such a huge role in the development of a strong captain because they have been there and done that.

Look at how warriors used to get announced when entering the court of a king. All their titles and accomplishments got announced so that everyone knew who they were and what they have done. It was a badge of honor to be worn to show allies and adversaries alike.

However, their announcements also indicated what they have not accomplished. For example, a person may be able to lead and have had great successes on many battlefields. However, none of that will matter when they come face to face with a dragon.

You can do all the research you want on something and be prepared to the best of your ability, but in the end, nothing can replicate the experience that is needed to handle such a situation. Just like within the esports world, the titles and accolades earned are not just merely awards, but proof of their conquests.

A player may be talented, have a great relationship with the team and have accomplished many feats in their career, however, if they haven’t faced a “dragon,” who knows how successful a leader they are.

Let us look at the most recent The International 2017 Defense of the Ancients 2 tournament and the performance by Evil Geniuses. They were considered a favorite by many due to the great team make up they had and the victories they achieved in the previous tournaments leading up to the event.

When the time came for the big show, they were undeniably crushed in the early rounds and gave a rather underwhelming performance. Although Evil Geniuses had a solid squad with extremely talented players who got along together, they were missing one thing going into TI17: Peter “ppd” Dager.

Dager, a The International veteran, had stepped into the role of CEO of EG and was not leading the DOTA 2 squad into battle this year. Even though the team had performed well in the upcoming events, when they came to the dragon, they were not ready.

Whether the failure of Evil Geniuses at this tournament can be tied back to the absence of Peter Dager or if the team was just overwhelmed is debatable. What we know for sure is that they did not put on their best performance.

Whatever the reason, one cannot deny the difference that an experienced captain can make in the success or failure in a tournament. After all, if you intend to fight a dragon, you should bring along a dragon slayer.

The Wrap Up

There are many facets when it comes to forming a quality esports team, and it is far more involved than just slapping together a few skilled players. Even after the squad is formed and the bond gets established, there still remains hard work ahead.

From what we have recently seen in the esports community, the factor that ties everyone together, in my opinion, is the captain. They are steering the ship and leading the squad into battle. That role cannot get filled from the sidelines, and they must be right there in the thick of things in case problems arise.

As esports bettors, we should keep an eye on the roster a team is putting out going into the big esports tournaments. We need to look at changes that may have been recently made that may affect the predicted performance.

No one can truly predict how well a team will perform until “stuff” hits the fan. However, when that happens, I know I will feel much more at ease knowing that a veteran captain is leading the charge.