Kuroky's post TI reflections: https://www.theplayerstribune.com/kuroky-dota2-the-international/
Kuro has been around forever, even before I started watching competitive dota 7 years ago, he has been there, competing at the very top. He was part of the legendary TI3 Na'Vi squad that almost took home the Aegis 4 years ago. So even though I have never spoken to him, never met him, and he has no idea that I exist, I guess he feels a little like an old friend to me.
He has also been one of the very quiet and private players, very well respected but no one hears much from him. So it's really cool to see a piece written by him.
I think the part that stood out for me the most was how he and his team felt winning the tournament. Emptiness.
An interesting fact about competitive dota is that in 7 years no one player has ever won the international twice. 35 different people have won the international, there have been no repeat winners. In fact, a number of champion teams fell apart shortly after winning.
And it's interesting to see this insight. In competitive dota, nothing matters except winning TI. In terms of prize pool, the one single tournament has a higher payout that all other tournaments throughout the entire year combined. But it's not just about the prize money of course, it's the prestige, it's about being at the pinnacle.
And that says alot about life. These players, they spent their lives pursing that one thing. They eat, breathe, live dota. Ask any player and they all tell you that they only have one dream, and that is to win TI. So what happens when you actually do win TI? Life suddenly feels empty. Great, you won it, now what?
And for some of these players, they seem to lose a sense of purpose. Or perhaps they simply move on and find something else worth pursuing. To some, since this is their career and what they're good at of course, they have a new challenge. Win 2 TIs.
Maybe soon enough someone will. And then what? The next goal will be to win 3 TIs?
While I really love the game and enjoy watching the competition, honestly I do find it sad that for many of these players, their lives are driven by just one sole purpose. Some of them will keep chasing it and it keeps eluding them, while for others they do get there, and they end up finding that it does not actually satisfy.