Arguably the best position 4 player in the CIS region, Vladimir "RodjER" Nikogosyan, talked about his time with the Virtus.pro squad, elaborating on what led to their dismantling. He also reflected on his views on Just Error, in a conversation with Dota 2 host and commentator, Maria "Mrs. Marple" Ermolina.
RodjER appreciated his captain at Virtus.Pro: Solo and also talked about how the team’s chemistry started to fall apart before TI8.
“[Solo] was a great captain. He understood the meta, had great smoke calls, our every move worked. Everyone trusted him. We had the best players. The patch favored us. Everything was in our favor.
Before TI8, the atmosphere in the team started to crumble. Disagreements started appearing. I started playing badly in my lane. There was some pressure on me from the boys. I wanted to match my status as a star. If something went wrong, I would be driven. I started worrying and overthinking about it. Each mistake started to hit harder.”
He further revealed that his lousy showing at the Kuala Lumpur Major had even led to RAMZES666 wanting him to get kicked from the squad, but Solo was not in favor of this decision.
“I played horribly at The Kuala Lumpur Major, and the boys at this point were aggressively communicating, trying to restore my confidence "Where's Rodger who won tournaments?". That did not help. During the major Ramzes wanted to kick me and [Solo] was joking that then he would leave as well. But on the final day, I shaved my beard without touching the moustache, took the PGL guy's glasses, relaxed, and fucked around. I played well then.”
RodjER stated that though Just Error’s lineup had the desired level of gameplay, they lacked the team chemistry and honesty required to continue competing together.
“As per gameplay, I thought they'd show up. But would they overcome their egos? IRL, they're all friends, but in Dota, it's different: people lose trust in each other, patches change, not everyone is looking in the same direction. If they wanted to play seriously, they'd have to be honest with each other, and I think there were some unsaid things when playing.”
He finally concluded by putting forward his opinion on what RAMZES666, Solo, and No[o]ne should do in the near future.
“I think [Solo] should start from scratch and build the team brick by brick as he did with VP. He can do it, he has done it before multiple times, and I believe in him. Ramzes and No[o]ne can play together. I think they can do it if they find people or if they join an existing stack.”
RodjER joined one of the most storied lineups in the history of Virtus.pro comprising of Solo, No[o]ne, RAMZES666, 9pasha, and Lil in February 2018. Hailed as the biggest CIS shuffle of all time, Lil was transferred to Natus Vincere while RodjER joined Virtus.pro. He played for VP until September 2019, emerging as a champion in four DPC Majors.