OG started the 2021-2022 Dota Pro Circuit Spring (DPC) Tour for Western Europe with a blast, dominating rivals Nigma Galaxy in a 2-0 sweep.
There's a lot on the line in the Spring Tour as the regional leagues now award 920 DPC points, meaning a strong showing there will go a long way towards securing a direct invite to The International 11 (TI11).
With so much at stake, OG carry player Artem "Yuragi" Golubiev put on a show in game two of his team's showdown against Nigma Galaxy by showcasing the power of Vengeful Spirit — a hero many consider to be a support — as a carry.
Yuragi reminds the world that Vengeful Spirit is a viable core
OG are no stranger to innovation. After all, the team invented the carry Io strategy with Anathan "ana" Pham, showcased the strength of Earth Spirit on Jesse "JerAx" Vainikka, and managed to defeat Team Liquid at TI9 by building Diffusal Blade on Gyrocopter — a build no one had seen until that match.
OG showcased their penchant for innovation once again in game two of their Spring Tour opener against Nigma Galaxy.
Vengeful Spirit was picked third in the draft and was thought to be one of the two supports on the team. However, OG threw a curveball when they revealed that they were putting all their eggs in the Vengeful Spirit basket, a choice the analysts were wary of.
Mikhail "Misha" Agatov would support Yuragi in the lane as the Ogre Magi, while Tommy "Taiga" Le on Enchantress and Ammar "ATF" Al-Assaf on Mars manned the offlane.
Both the offlane picks were well suited to counter Igor "iLTW" Filatov on the Medusa. Mars’ Bulwark can redirect Medusa’s damage from allies to Mars while Enchantress works well against lineups lacking burst damage.
Vengeful Spirit has been played as a carry before, but the hero received multiple nerfs in the last few patches and it was doubtful if Yuragi could carry the game.
Bozhidar "bzm" Bogdanov would play the team’s true carry, the Templar Assassin. Templar Assassin has seen a resurgence in popularity in the midlane due to the hero’s ability to flash farm and hit an early power spike, two crucial factors in the shorter meta game of Dota 2 patch 7.31b.
Yuragi had an excellent start to the game, as he was able to get three kills during the laning stage, including a double kill on Ivan Borislavov "MinD_ContRoL" Ivanov and Maroun "GH" Merhej.
Nigma Galaxy had banked on winning their offlane with Sand King and Clockwork but Yuragi’s double kill placed the lane firmly in the hands of OG.
Yuragi played his role as a fighting carry perfectly, maxing out Magic Missile and Wave of Terror to allow him to do a ton of damage during early game skirmishes. He only took Nether Swap at level nine, as his main goal early in the game was to get kills and not save allies.
The item build for Yuragi focused on stacking as many stats as possible for Vengeful Spirit. Power Treads, Wraith Band, Magic Wand, and Falcon Blade are all cheap early game items that allowed him to play aggressively.
The main focus of the build was to rush the Aghanim Scepter after, using the two lives it granted to cause as much chaos as possible amongst the ranks of Nigma Galaxy.
Yuragi finished his Aghanim's Scepter 17 minutes into the game, and that’s when OG stepped on the gas by invading Nigma Galaxy's jungle.
It was clear Nigma Galaxy were not expecting how strong this power spike for Vengeful Spirit would be as Yuragi managed to get six kills in one fight, including two on Kuro "KuroKy" Salehi Takhasomi.
After winning that incredible team fight, OG were able to control the map.
All three of their cores were at the top of the net worth, while Nigma Galaxy only had iLTW farming and that simply wasn’t enough. OG secured the series sweep 15 minutes later.
It was a fascinating draft by OG as they focused on a clear mid-game power spike. The OG draft didn’t scale as well late game compared to Medusa and Invoker, but it didn’t need to, as OG shut down the map with their incredibly fast tempo and proceeded to out farm their opponents.
Dota 2 patch 7.31b has shortened the game length and that puts ultra-hard carries such as Medusa and Terrorblade in a bad spot.
With tempo carries like Tiny and Vengeful Spirit coming into the spotlight, it will be interesting to see how the meta continues to develop in the Spring Tour.
Artem "Yuragi" Golubiev
Bozhidar "bzm" Bogdanov
Ammar "ATF" Al-Assaf
Tommy "Taiga" Le
Mikhail "Misha" Agatov
Nigma Galaxy roster:
Igor "iLTW" Filatov
Amer "Miracle-" Al-Barkawi
Ivan "MinD_ContRoL" Ivanov
Maroun "GH" Merhej
Kuro "Kuroky" Salehi Takhasomi
Otomo is a long-time gaming enthusiast and caster. He has been playing games since he was 10 and is the biggest Dota 2 fan.