Quinn, Gorgc, and iNSaNiA Share Insights on Finding Mental Balance as Dota 2 Players

Rakshak Kathuria
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<div class="paragraphs"><p>Quinn, Gorgc. and iNSaNiA talk about mental well being as Dota 2 players</p></div>
Quinn, Gorgc. and iNSaNiA talk about mental well being as Dota 2 players


Valve and Gorgc

Dota 2 pros Quinn "Quinn" Callahan, Aydin "iNSaNiA" Sarkohi, and Janne "Gorgc" Stefanovski shared their insights on finding balance as Dota 2 players.
As the players explained, dedicating an enormous amount of time to Dota 2 often leads to an accumulation of emotions, which leads to outbursts.
As a result, finding sources of engagement outside of the game is essential for maintaining balance while also retaining the excitement of playing Dota 2.

As intense as Dota 2 can be and the unhealthy tendency to chain queue players can get caught up in, it is important not to become completely absorbed in it. In Episode 6 of the Dota 2 podcast "ALL CHAT", Dota 2 pros Quinn "Quinn" Callahan, Aydin "iNSaNiA" Sarkohi, and Janne "Gorgc" Stefanovski shared their insights on finding balance as Dota 2 players. As the players described, in many instances, spending a lot of time on games continuously results in a buildup of emotions, which can lead to lash outs. As such, they suggested that it becomes important that players find sources of happiness and engagement outside of the game in order to not only maintain balance, but also retain the thrill of playing Dota 2.

Quinn, Gorgc. and iNSaNiA talk about mental well being as Dota 2 players

As the topic of maintaining one's cool in Dota 2 came up, Gorgc stated how emotions can build up after something adverse like eight defeats in a row and then explode on mostly anything, even if it was not directed at them.

Quinn also stated how devoting a lot of effort to the game might have an impact on a player's self esteem if things do not go as planned.

"That’s a chronic toxic person for a long time. I think the reason why a lot of people get so mad at the game or what I realize for myself anyway and then sort of extrapolated towards other people is the game just takes so much effort.

You put so much time into it over such a long period of time that it just takes a big chunk of your self worth so when things go badly, there's some part of your brain that if you're not really really aware of it you're just like - ah I need to defend my ego I put so much time into this game and now I still suck. Your subconscious is just having a panic attack. It's just melting and and so I at least you know lash out like a child.”

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In addition, Gorgc spoke candidly about how a challenging phase a few years ago led him to speak with Dr. K., a well-known psychiatrist among gamers, where he learned the importance of things outside of Dota 2 that can bring fulfillment.

“I fully agree with that I mean I was actually a little bit in therapy a few years ago three four years ago and it was with Dr K. It was off stream. I was talking to him and he gave me the best advice - I mean a few things stuck with me.

One of the big ones was if you attach too much of your ego to the game - humans are pretty simple, just do other things outside the game like find a hobby, go to the gym so your entire life is not one thing and I think a lot of Dota players, even pro players as well suffer from that and they would do good if they found anything else they could be proud of or good at.”

As someone who has been around the Dota 2 competitive scene since the early days of HoN (Heroes of Newerth), INSaNiA echoed Gorgc's sentiment, mentioning how occupied he was with ranked games at one stage in his career.

“I can super super super agree with this as someone that used to play literally everyday every single day no matter what only play and I always thought like - the dead inside, play Dota all day. Life is only distraction. I just need to play the game. Every game I play makes me better like that kind of mindset, it was the worst because your feeling of self worth would be equivalent to the amount of MMR you gained or lost in a day.”

INSaNiA explained that when played in excess, Dota 2 ranked games leave you in a loop, which renders the experience less thrilling.

“if you went 50/50 day is dogshit because you gained nothing. If you lost - oh my God, bury me today and then if you won that's like the expected outcome so there was no winning for your mental state. It was just always bad.”

As such, iNSaNiA remarked that upon finding other activities of happiness in life, such as going to the gym, he is able to experience a sense of progress, no matter how small, which contributes to balancing the reliance on Dota 2 pubs as the sole source of fulfillment.

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As a passionate Dota 2 fan for eight years, Rakshak has indulged himself completely in its esports circuit for the past two years as a professional. In addition to covering major news developments, he takes a keen interest in understanding team strengths and player personalities.