Le Ho Anh is the esports coach and manager of Viet Nam Gaming Community (VNGC), a professional Naraka Bladepoint team from Vietnam.

One of the best from Southeast Asia, they’re representing the region at J Cup 2023, the Naraka world championship held in Chengdu, China.

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Leading the trio is their 28-year old mentor, who works 15 hours a day in two jobs just to make ends meet because the team currently has no sponsors.

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In this exclusive interview with ONE Esports, Ho Anh tells us about how he got into gaming and why he chose to pursue a career in esports despite its challenges.

Naraka Bladepoint esports coach Le Ho Anh is giving his all to VNGC

VNGC Naraka Bladepoint esports coach Le Ho Anh in feature video by NetEase
Screenshot by Amanda Tan/ONE Esports, credit: Naraka Esports on YouTube

When we think of Vietnam and esports, another national title comes to mind: League of Legends.

The country has competed in Garena Premiere League since its inception in 2012, which has now evolved into their very own exclusive Vietnam Championship Series.

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Ho Anh started playing League of Legends early on in 2014 but did not pursue a professional career in the MOBA at that time because of its uncertain future.

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Coupled with pressure from family, he instead participated in community tournaments while completing his studies in software engineering.

VNGC Naraka Bladepoint esports coach Le Ho Anh and player Royhihi back view
Screenshot by Amanda Tan/ONE Esports, credit: Naraka Esports on YouTube

During the pandemic, he started to play more games and picked up Naraka Bladepoint when it was first released in August 2021. This move reignited his passion for gaming, one that fuels him deeply.

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“I love the competition of sports in general. What I like most about Naraka is its unique survival mode,” Ho Anh tells ONE Esports.

“When one member makes a mistake, the whole team has no chance to turn the situation around. It is truly an arena where members must concentrate and coordinate closely with each other to have a chance of surviving.”

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VNGC eventually invited him to start a professional team after seeing him manage another squad for a year.

VNGC at Naraka Bladepoint J Cup 2023 world championship first day of trios
Credit: VNGC

The catch? It’s still primarily an online gaming community with more than 20,000 followers on Facebook.

Ho Anh therefore needed to find a way to make ends meet for himself and his team. “Every day, I am stuck on the computer for 15 hours, of which eight hours at night I spend working as a software engineer,” he shared. “The remaining time, mainly afternoons, I spend on VNGC.”

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He’s grateful for the nature of his engineering job because it means that he can manage his workload in his own time as long as he meets deadlines.

“At first, it was quite difficult because I had to stay up a lot, but gradually I got used to it,” he said. “I’m not married yet, so I’m comfortable with my current passion.”

Naraka Bladepoint key visual
Credit: 24 Entertainment

What he enjoys most about being a Naraka Bladepoint coach is that it’s akin to playing chess: he finds it fulfilling to analyze opponents, figure out strengths and weaknesses of players, draft for his team, and decide which strategies to use, all while striving to get the best results.

In terms of his greatest challenge, it pertains more to the social aspect of the role. “I learned how to talk less ‘mechanically’,” said Ho Anh.

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“When working as a programmer, sometimes I’m logical to the extreme, but as a coach, I learn how to help people clearly understand what I convey, put my ego down, receive information from the players first, then convince players who are better at the game to listen to me.”

Looking ahead, he feels he’s reached the age where getting married is a priority. In the long run, he wishes to settle in a full-time permanent position and contribute to Naraka esports on the side.

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