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I had the chance to interview one of the most legendary DotA players, Kim “PapaDrayich” Larsson, who is now back for DotA 2 as the captain of our team. During this interview we talk about his thoughts on DotA 2, his time in HoN, his expectations and much more. You can read the full interview below.

Hi Kim, first of all, could you introduce yourself for those who might not know who you are ?

Sure, I’m Kim Larsson, 29y guy from Sweden. I am married and I’ve got two kids, one boy 6 y and a girl 3y. I’ve played DotA since late 2004 and also had a break for playing hon during the last 1.5 years. I’ve played for SK-gaming, mousesports and OK to name some of the bigger organizations. In HoN I played for TsoG.

You played a lot of DotA, and now that DotA 2 is in the Beta stages, what do you think about it, is it up to par with its predecessor in terms of gameplay ?

I believe DotA2 and DotA1 are very similar, however it seems with less heroes and still a new game engine the gameplay hasn’t really been decided yet. What I hope for is that the strategies get wide, and that it’s possible to play both really offensive and also really defensive.

After playing DotA, you switched to HoN, what motivated the change, and how was the experience for you with HoN ?

The DotA-HoN transition is a popular question. I stopped playing DotA1 really to get my ass off the “professional” scene and to relax a bit. My friends were like “Come hon with us on Dreamhack” and I accepted. I mean I still like gaming even if it wasn’t professional. Fun fact was that our experience and also tons of high level friendship made us win that tournament and the prize of going to China and Singapore. With this we couldn’t really just play “for fun” anymore but instead we went professional. The switchback for dota2 was just since I waited so long for the Beta to be released. I am a big DotA fan but I admit I still really love HoN aswell.

What do you think of the current hero pool in DotA 2 ?

The hero pool is too small. That’s all I can say. However I enjoy the fact that the heroes come in slow tempo, because i need that to learn them. 🙂

Even though DotA 2 is still in Beta stage, its competitive scene seems to develop week after week, do you think it can reach the popularity of other titles within e-Sports such as Starcraft 2 ?

I’m putting all my hopes into DotA2 and its development in E-sports.

Continuing with the previous question, some people argue DotA 2 is not as spectator friendly as other e-Sports games, since you would have to play the game in order to understand it, do you think this can cause an impact on the popularity of the game ?

About the spectator point, sure it effects the game, however I believe with increasing skill on the commentaries and with more and more people getting interested in the game maybe this won’t be such a big problem. I mean you could argue that people watching Starcraft II isn’t really understanding everything that happens. Do you really need to understand everything in DotA2? I don’t think so.

Before joining Reason Gaming, you, hyddae and XoYnoZnU were playing for GamersLeague, what went wrong or why did you decide to join Reason Gaming alongside Giftig and Tanari ?

To be honest what happened with Gamersleague was that the cooperation with our German friends Black and Slap0r didn’t really feel good. And when Giftig and me started discussions I really felt like I would like to play with him. This happened and with his already big trust with the organization of reason-gaming I couldn’t see any real reasons for not being a reason. (LOL)

Now that 2012 is here, what would you say are your expectations for the team in 2012 ?

Expectations are dangerous. But as my wife says, if you gonna put down this energy into the game then you need to get something out from it. So my wife pretty much sums it all up.

Are there any offline tournaments already planned for you and your team in 2012 ?

No offline tournaments planned yet. However I expect us to plan one really soon.

Your team has participated in the Skynet Cup as of late, being in a 3 way tie at the moment in Group B, how would you rate your team in this tournament so far ?

Skynet tournament is a good start for us. It’s clear that we can beat good teams and still get beaten by pretty “not so good” teams. This tells the story of the team which is we need some more time to really grow together. The individual skill of some of my players have been clear tho, and I’m really excited to see them grow during 2012

Streaming has become a big part of Gaming, so far we have only seen Tanari streaming, does the rest of the team plan on streaming at some point ?

About streaming I’m gonna try to make Xoy/Hyddae to start streaming aswell. We might not do it with sound tho, since one of our power as a team is the way we talk to each other and we don’t wanna share that with other teams yet.

I know you are a family man, so, how do you manage to combine gaming and family, and is your wife ok with the time you spend gaming ?

How do i combine gaming and family life, I don’t know really. I think one of the most important thing is to be honest with your love from the beginning. Tell them ur a gamer. I don’t know how many people I’ve met that stopped gaming during the first period of time when they meet someone, then they start again when the real super love is gone. This creates so much troubles. You gotta be honest with each other from day 1 and admit that you are into gaming. From there it’s easier to discuss and make plans, even if you have kids. I always respect my wife’s wishes and she respect mine. That makes everything possible.

You have been competing in video games for a long time, so, what would recommend to anyone who is looking to start a gaming career ?

Starting a gaming career, hmm. that’s a really tricky question. I think watching other people play, regardless of what game, and really consider their strategies carefully is important. Of course set a lot of time so you get the reflexes right, but also learning how to play smart is a big part of success.

Finally, to wrap this up, is there anything you would like to say to your fans ?

Last words would be keep supporting us and look out for us especially at offline events where i believe our strength will peak. And of course a special shoutout to our sponsors and my personal sponsor – my wife. Love you all!

 We at hope you enjoyed this interview, if you have any comments, you can leave them below, and dont forget to stay tuned to for further content from our teams.