The Dota 2 DPC season 2 has arrived, and with it, some major roster changes for two of the biggest teams in the league. Team Nigma and OG have both made changes to their position one player for the season and the impact has been felt already, with both teams looking far stronger than in DPC season 1.
Ana Returns for Dota 2 DPC Season 2
OG’s performance last season was lacklustre, to say the least, with a loss to Liquid in the regional qualifier tiebreakers meaning they didn’t even make it to the Singapore Major. This was the first Major tournament of the season, and many were worried that this performance was indicative of what we could expect from OG in the coming months leading up to TI. However, with the return of Ana, who is replacing Midone, OG certainly looks invigorated, starting the season with a crushing victory over Brame.
Game one certainly saw the OG roster looking a little shaky as they found their footing, with Ana’s networth leaving a lot to be desired. OG found themselves at a 5k gold and 10k experience deficit 25 minutes into the game, but slowly started to scrape their way back, turning the game around by the 30-minute mark with some clutch Reverse Polarities by Ceb’s Magnus and a strong teamfight-oriented build from Ana.
OG looked like their old selves again in game 2, with Ana’s Phantom Lancer quickly getting out of hand and the game-ending with some signature fountain diving by the squad. More recently, OG did lose their series against Alliance, who won off the back of an incredible Morphling performance by Nikobaby.
The Dota 2 DPC Season 2 Is Still Fiercely Competitive
Expectations are obviously high for OG, who certainly look like a completely different team compared to season one, however a few teething problems as Ana gets back into his competitive mindset should be expected. Either way, Western European teams should be weary now that OG have their confidence back, because counting out a two-time TI winner in the Dota 2 DPC season 2 would be a massive mistake.
ILTW Joins Team Nigma, Replacing W33
While perhaps a lesser-known figure in the Dota 2 community than Ana, ILTW is notorious for his passion for the game. Before Nigma’s first series against Team Secret, the casters noted that he is constantly playing Dota 2 for 16+ hours at a time, honing his abilities in public matches and grinding more than most other professional players.
Taking Down the Season 1 Champs
This incredible discipline was shown immediately against Team Secret, with an almost perfect performance on Juggernaut being the deciding factor in Nigma’s dismantling of the Western European favourites. It could have certainly been argued that Puppey’s strange drafting choices of a jungle Venomancer for himself and relegating their offlaner, Zai, to a lesser farming role could have cost them the game as well.
If game one wasn’t enough of a showing for ILTW, game two solidified his place as a top carry in the league, with his Gyrocopter pairing up with Gh’s Io to amazing effect. Constantly pushing into Team Secret to absorb damage and spells, ILTW’s trust that Gh would swoop in to save him paid off with dividends, as follow-up from Miracle’s mid Sandking and Mind.Control on Dark Seer made teamfights impossible for Secret. Miracle was surely the standout here, crushing Nisha’s Void Spirit in the mid lane and dominating Secret thereafter. This was a particularly impressive showing by ILTW, playing incredible Dota against the winners of the previous DPC season.
Similar to OG, Nigma did lose their follow-up series against Team Liquid, in a close-fought series culminating in a 45-minute slugfest that saw ILTW’s Phantom Lancer struggler to find enough damage to handle Liquid’s tanky lineup.
Miracle Back To Mid
A few losses here and there are to be expected as ILTW finds his feet and Nigma works out their best drafts and team chemistry, however the difference between Nigma this season and last season is night and day. While W33 was certainly a strong player, Miracle’s return to the midlane places him squarely back into the playmaking role, with mid heroes in this patch favouring the aggressive gameplay that Miracle has shown in the past with his Puck and Tinker. ILTW compliments this perfectly, playing an incredibly stable carry who is willing to participate in fights in the early and mid-game, while not sacrificing his farm for the later periods.
For a team who were the first eliminated during the Wildcard phase of the Singapore Major last season, this increase in stability and chemistry is exactly what they need for the Dota 2 DPC season 2.
OG and Nigma in the Dota 2 DPC Season 2
For both teams, these roster changes feel like an upgrade. Midone and W33 weren’t incredible players in their own right, but sometimes a team’s chemistry is more important than simply having high levels of talent. In both Ana and ILTW’s case, both teams look to be playing more cohesively, with a return to fountain diving for OG and a defeat over the DPC season 1 winners for Team Nigma. Fans will have to see what the future holds for these two teams however, as the Western European region is one of, if not the toughest regions in the league.