This is the second article in an exclusive interview series with Evil Geniuses’ Artour “Arteezy” Babaev. You can read the first article with the Evil Geniuses carry player here.
There’s some bad news for those hankering after more Arteezy streams: he’s just not that into streaming anymore.
The Evil Geniuses position one player first made his name through amazing mid plays on his stream, but has since carved out a career as one of Dota 2’s most recognizable and successful pros.
And while many fans are hoping for him to become a more regular presence on Twitch, he told ONE Esports that he finds “streaming not as fun as it used to be.”
Arteezy: ‘Streaming is more of a profession than it used to be‘
The EG star remains a huge draw whenever he fires up his Twitch stream, with webcam or not. His streams in November last year attracted more than 20,000 average viewers a day, according to Twitch stats site Sullygnome. For comparison, Janne “Gorgc” Stefanovski, one of Dota 2’s most prolific and popular streamers, averages about 12,000 viewers in any given month.
To Arteezy, however, streaming has become much more professional and more taxing for him than in the past.
“Even when I had a large audience in the past, I always viewed it as chilling with the fans,” Arteezy said. “But now it’s a lot more. It’s not that fun.”
The 25-year-old attributes several factors to this lowered enjoyment, including the difficulty in finding good games in the North America region, as well as the desire for more privacy.
NA’s small player pool makes it easy to snipe, and difficult to practice
North America’s player pool has dwindled over the years, and it’s now the smallest major region in terms of matchmaking games played, according to Dota 2 stats website Stratz. There were just over 9.8 million matches played in NA during January 2022, compared to 24 million in the next largest region, China.
The EG carry said that the small player pool made it difficult for “effective practice.” If he was streaming, griefers can even attempt to snipe his games—queuing at the exact same time to increase their hopes of getting in the same match.
“It’s really easy to get in my games now,” Arteezy said. “I had people snipe me from Europe and playing Techies.”
“Especially being a NA player, US East is complete trash. It’s really hard to get effective practice. You really need to go out of your way to actually learn things when you play pubs these days.”
Arteezy: ‘I don’t really like sharing my life the same way that I used to‘
Part of the reason he’s stepped back from streaming is due to the influence he holds. Even as a teenager, he arguably led the “S A D B O Y S” NA culture that spread amongst the player base. These included uttering phrases like “get me out of this game,” “I’m done,” and purposely mistyping random caps (liKE THS) to further accentuate the “no cares” attitude.
“Back then, I didn’t know anything about that [influence],” Arteezy said. “I would just say random shit all the time. I’m sure I didn’t help the NA scene in that way.”
Now, his public persona is more reserved. As a more thoughtful 25-year-old, the EG star has realized that he prefers to keep more of his life under wraps. To that end, the EG star has stayed away from social media as well, like deleting Twitter from his phone.
“Back then, if I had a thought, I would just open my phone and tweet about it,” he said. “And now, I don’t even bother with it. I just don’t really care about that aspect anymore.”