The Open Division is well underway and Heroes of the Storm teams are clashing each week to discover who will be challenging the HGC teams in the Crucible. Narrating our way through Phase One are the dynamic duo of Grubby and Tetcher. Today we’re putting Grubby on the hot seat to learn more about his passion for Heroes of the Storm and casting.
You have a rich history as both a gamer and caster, what is it about Heroes of the Storm that attracts you?
I love multiplayer games with a deep potential for learning and improving. It’s important for me that a game has good visual, audio, replayability, and most of all interesting gameplay. Heroes combines this with a host of iconic characters from games that I have come to love, like SC1, D1, D2, WC3 and SC2. I always enjoy playing HotS, either on-stream or off-stream. The game keeps feeling fresh and new, there’s always a new character to learn or enjoy.
What got you into casting and what drives you to keep going?
Most of all, a desire to teach the audience new things about the game or to entertain them. As I try to explain and teach concepts, I learn more about the game as well.
Any preparation techniques or advice you’d care to share with aspiring casters?
Your larynx is a muscle like any other. There are many mistakes that could have you damage your throat. Having it get too hot (hot coffee/tea), too cold (ice water), straining it by over-use and lack of rest, can all have an impact on your comfort and speaking quality. Warming-up, rest, treatment are important. For the rest, casting is very psychological. Bringing the right mood is key, so do whatever prep is needed for you personally to be “in the right zone”.
When you’re casting Open Division matches, what sort of macro/micro gameplay are looking for in teams to suggest to you they’ll be a potential contender?
Knowing how to get and maintain a lead is very important, as many teams will either not know how to create an advantage (instead growing used to an opponent making some random mistake). At higher levels you can’t just wait for opponents to make a mistake anymore as it gets rarer. Secondly, knowing how to comeback or limit your losses. Thirdly, the use of vision and the lack thereof. The fourth and most obvious one is skillshot accuracy, timing and (Heroic) ability synergy.
Do you have any advice for aspiring OD teams?
Practice hard, enjoy the process.
What is your favorite aspect of casting OD matches?
When I ask Tetcher “What’s up?” and he answers “The ceiling”, it gets me in the right mood every time.
What do you love/hate about the Heroes amateur scene?
Love – finding players that play “above the level”, where you get a feeling they may end up in HGC Pro (example: Deeaybe).
Hate – nothing, really.
Who is your favorite hero and why?
That’s the great thing, right? It keeps changing. Currently I’m kinda liking Ana because playing her practices your skill at positioning and your skill at hitting skill shots. I’m also finally becoming fond of Malthael because of his value in the meta (great solo laner, good teamfight). My favorite without a doubt currently, though, is Junkrat. He keeps cackling maniacally, his waveclear and mobility are insane, and although he’s very squishy there can be a value in your death as you explode into dangerous bombs.. Or you can stay at a greater range and poke away. 😀
When it’s time to simply have fun, what sort of composition brings joy to your heart to play in HotS?
I like all compositions. My most “hated Heroes” to go up against are Genji, Hanzo, Tracer, Zagara and Sylvanas. It can feel quite powerless going up against them under certain circumstances, whereas I never feel that way with for example an Artanis, ETC, Stukov, Valla, or Nazeebo.
Give me one hero you would like to see join the Nexus…
Mal’ganis or another Dreadlord. Basically the WC3 Dreadlord. Much anticipated for a long time already!
We all know that Tetcher is a “super big jerk”, tell us something lovely about your casting partner to help repair his broken reputation…
Tetcher does amazing voice impersonations and accents. I think he could be a talented voice actor any time he wants to be. I enjoy listening to that when he does it.
For the record, Tetcher and Grubby are both amazing people with great attitudes and if you ever have the pleasure to meet them in person, I think you will see what I mean. Thank you to Grubby for taking the time to answer my questions! You can catch Grubby streaming on Twitch, and be sure to catch both Tetcher and Grubby commentating the action packed HGC EU Open Division at https://www.twitch.tv/blizzheroes!