I caught up with South Africa’s only professional cyber athlete, Robert “PandaTank” Botha for a chat about competing in StarCraft II at DreamHack 2013. DreamHack is the world’s largest digital festival and holds the official world record as the world’s largest LAN party in the Guinness Book of Records. During 2009 DreamHack reached over 200 000 unique visitors. The major festivals take place during 4 days, 24-7.
Tell us about your experience with DreamHack 2013
It's pretty mind blowing. I don't really know how else I could describe it. Picture like 3 000 or more PC's in a hall, and have 4 of those next to one another. It's quite the sight to behold. But everything about the event is just really good in general.
Have you made any changes to your gameplay/strategy of late?
Not really. I think I'm pretty weak in the current meta-game. So I’m gonna explore some new styles when I get home. I knew this going into the tournies but I didn't have enough time to change anything beforehand. So I just had to play my regular style even though I knew it wasn't very optimal.
Have you seen any changes in your mind-set since you've entered the arena of professional eSports athlete?
Yes, a lot of changes. But overall my mind-set is still really bad. It's improved but I'm gonna have to work really hard to change some of things. I'm often very doubtful of my abilities and it's holding me back from getting to the next level of skill I think.
What has been your most difficult game during DreamHack?
I guess my games in group stage 3. Not only did I get the hardest group(by far) in the whole tournament, but we also only started playing at 10pm in the night. I usually wake up pretty early so playing that late isn't very fun.
What has been your most fun game during DreamHack?
By far my games versus Sting. I knew I was already out of the tournament so I just went into it relaxed and for fun. On paper String is a far superior player, but I still managed to beat him 2-1. It was really awesome.
What's in store for you until the end of this year?
Hard to say right now. I guess you'll just have to wait and see.
DreamHack: Website / PandaTank: Twitter | Facebook / Cooler Master (eSports Sponsor): Facebook
PandaTank’s eSports journey is an inspiration to all our local cyber athletes. We all share in his success; he is showing us that it is not an unreachable dream to become a professional gamer.
Dream big gamer!
DreamHack Summer 2013 numbers
- Total no of visitors: 18361 – New DreamHack Summer Record
- Unique devices in the network: 16932 – New DreamHack Record
- No of participants with their own computer: 9201 – New DreamHack Record
- Bandwidth usage peak in: 29.8 Gbps – New DreamHack Record
- Bandwidth usage peak out: 20.9 Gbps – New DreamHack Record
- Data sent in & out: 868 TB – New DreamHack Record
- Hype level: 100 – New DreamHack Record
DreamHack Summer 2013 Champions
- DreamHack Open – StarCraft II Son “StarDust” Seok Hee
- DreamHack ASUS ROG Dota 2 Tournament Alliance
- DreamHack SteelSeries CS:GO Championship NiP-Gaming
- DreamHack Energizer Ultimate Lithium Fighting Championship Simon “Popi” Gutierrez
- DreamHack League of Legends Championship Copenhagen Wolves
- Heroes of Newerth Stay Green
- ESPORTSM FIFA13 Ivan “BorasLegend” Lapanje
- ESPORTSM SSFIVAE Simon “Popi” Gutierrez
- ESPORTSM StarCraft II Johan “NaNiwa” Lucchesi
- ESPORTSM CSGO NiP Gaming
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