Team captain of the ever-resourceful Vega Squadron, Dmitry “jR” Chervak sat down to talk about how the new composition of the team was formed, and also expressed dissatisfaction with the unjustifiably high buy-outs for the players in the CIS.
Most recently Vega Squadron came in 3rd at the WePlay! Forge of Masters Season 1 — their best result thus far with the new roster. According to jR, while he’s happy with the current line-up, it took way too much effort to gather the squad, and the biggest reason for that was the unreasonably high buy-outs for CS:GO players.
Seized in his blog said that at the WePlay tournament you will check what works and what does not work. Can you say now exactly what works and what doesn’t?
We have developed some kind of base from which to build on, and now we are testing it, roughly speaking. There is a lot of things that are not played up a lot, much still needs to be discussed, it is possible to remove and watch what works and what does not work from this base. Some rounds clean up, some add what to do quickly, slowly, etc. Many of the developments that we have added to our database may not work in official games, so you need to look.
It happens in training, everything works, and you come to the LAN and you have nothing. Teams on the praccs can play in different ways. They do not allow you to practice your game, they push you, they play over aggressively. And on LAN they play passively.
It’s funny to hear it from you, considering that it was Vega who was often reproached for being too aggressive in training.
We love to play aggressively on the LAN, so sometimes we want to specifically train aggression. If the opponent allows us to play the way we want, then we will do so.
You only managed to get 2 rounds against HellRaisers. Is it just because it was the first day or are there other factors?
In fact, their team is also strong. They played well, but we made the gravest mistakes for which we paid with the game. It is necessary to look after the tournament to work on it. I think that the first game on LAN against a team with a European, in fact, line-up, is not bad. And maybe they somehow treated it more easily.
Do you feel that they have a different style of play because of the mixed composition?
Now everyone has a common style that uses tier-1 and tier-2. Everyone is looking at Astralis. But at the same time, they do not allow themselves to play as aggressively as our players. You will not play against Astralis, as people play now, they immediately punish you for any mistake.
DreamEaters looked uncertain on the second day. Were they worried or did you do a good homework?
Perhaps both, because the guys were the four of them, starix played for them, and, most likely, this also played a role. Because Krad is one of the main players that makes a lot of impact. Starix also made a lot of impact, but no matter how well you play, it all comes down to its composition, with which you trained, played. This is the first reason.
The second is that they played more tightly, allowing us to play aggressively. Everything went according to plan. That is, at least clutch was reduced. All other rounds we won by exchanging. There were no such unreal rounds. All the rounds that we won, we just got the advantage, saved and won.
Has your training for the tournament suffered because seized had eye problems?
Well, we had enough problems. Seized had eye problems, scoobyxie had exams so that he could not fully train. I believe that in the interval that we had — we made the most of it. And the tournament is like a test version, because we will have a bootcamp, where we will already be watching demos and sorting out mistakes to get in good shape. The main goal is to prepare for the Minor.
How did you form the new composition? You took exactly those three players you wanted?
Not that there were no free agents, initially I wanted Dima to join. Because I needed a man for the first role. Then seized and scoobyxie got free. We played, tested, we did great.
In each team there is a person who unites everyone. Somewhere it is the captain, somewhere an ordinary player. How is it with you?
We have a second coach and manager. The second coach was announced, but he is more like a psychologist. Everyone has their own opinion, but you need to find a compromise. And the last word either for the captain or for the coach.
Before the new squad was formed, the whole Vega squad was put on the transfer, including you. Was there any confusion because of how much you play in the organization?
First of all, I myself wanted it, because I was wondering who would be interested in me. I did not want to build the whole team — it is a difficult and, let’s say, ungrateful process. Because at any moment a player can be bought out by Na’Vi, and all the work goes down the drain. CIS organizations were interested in me, but I don’t know which organizations exactly. But somewhere it didn’t stick, somewhere at the price they did not agree. I believe that my transfer price is small for both for the captain and the sniper with the experience in playing Majors.
At the same time, we have players who did not play in Majors, not AWP, just good, average players, but the price is transcendental compared to me. I believe that organizations in the CIS put up inadequate prices for players. I think the norm is 20 salaries. Ten, as compensation for expenses, and ten, as profit for the organization itself.
From what I heard, the average salary in the CIS is around $2,000 dollars. Is that about right?
Somewhere like that.
So you offer buy-outs in the $50,000 area?
I think this is a normal, adequate amount. In our region the prices are exorbitant. I do not know why it is so. I know that there have been cases when the players have a salary below $1000, and the team asks $200,000 for them.
This is inadequate. Suppose there is a good player, with potential, they want to buy him out, but he has never been to the Majors, or even to LANs, he doesn’t represent anything, but he plays well on the Internet. He wants to join a tier 1-2 CIS organization, but then you hear the price.
But the players themselves sign the contracts, no? And they read what they sign? You can even consult with your parents, with a notary in the end.
There are no options. Here comes the organization to 5 no-names. They offer a salary, and the guys immediately peck at it. They don’t care what the buy-out will be, even a billion. They do not think about what will happen in the future. Now the market is formed in such a way that any player in the CIS is not below “a hundred” below, it is an average market. And I think that is inadequate. You can buy electronic for $100,000 and know what you’re getting, that’s okay. But to buy a player that no one really knows, who’s playing in tier 3. For what?
You open hltv, open a CIS-region and you know that the top 15 teams have contracts, they can even be without salaries, but with compensation. I believe that this must be fought, and buy-out should be done depending on the salary.
Did you come across a situation when you wanted to take a player, but you didn’t get them because the price was high?
Let’s just say we went more for free agents. When Sanya and Denis were free, we were very excited, because it was a good price for skilled players. We did not have the option to buy two players for $100,000. Therefore, in the first place, we looked at free agents.
In the new line-up, do you feel better online?
Before, no matter how we tried online, we always lost. And now, I don’t know what it’s all about, but we started to win, even compared to practice. We now have the potential, we can enter the top 15 and above, but we need to work and work. Tournaments like WePlay! Forge of Masters give us a very good boost. This is also a big bonus for CIS teams, because they can shine. Take the same DreamEaters, they are almost unknown to anyone. And now they will appear. Our team has a history of LANs. So we are more or less known.
Leagues like this give the CIS teams medium to the public. This is the most important for the organization.
It is obvious that all the teams now have only one big goal — to get to the Major and perform well there. What result will not disappoint you?
First, you need to get to the Major. In fact, I don’t really want to rate the Major as an indicator of anything. I mean, if we don’t get to the Major, then that’s it, we have to disband, right? On the contrary, if we do not even go to the Major, then we need to put more effort and show yourself next time. The same HellRaisers, for 3 years in a row they couldn’t get into the Major.