Korean Dota 2 pro Lee “Forev” Sang-dong has announced he is stepping down from his active roster spot with team HOYO, who are playing in the Dota Pro Circuit’s lower division in Southeast Asia.
According to Forev, he is taking a break due to the worsening state of the COVID-19 pandemic in Korea, which is affecting his personally owned business — a production studio in South Korea.
Forev teamed up with his former T1 Dota 2 teammates, Galvin “Meracle” Wen and Tri “Jhocam” Kuncoro under the unsigned team HOYO banner. They then completed their stack with two former Motivate.Trust members, Poomipat “Fearless” Trisiripanit and Anurat “boombell” Praianun.
Team HOYO qualified for the lower division of the first DPC Season in SEA, after winning three out of five group stage matches they had in the second stage of the closed qualifiers. Currently, the team is in fourth place of the standings with a 1-2 match record.
With Forev’s exit from the team, HOYO will now need to look for a substitute player for the duration of the lower division competition. According to Valve’s updated DPC ruleset, teams are required to play with at least four out of its five registered players. This means HOYO can alternate players until they find a proper offlaner replacement for Forev.
The only time players are not allowed to play with a stand-in is during the Majors. If they do, they will receive a 40% penalty in DPC points earned from that tournament.
HOYO has yet to announced their stand-in player, but they have until February 8 when they go up against Galaxy Racer during their fourth group stage match.