Since placing second at TI5, CDEC Gaming have had a mixed run of form, struggling to grapple with 6.85 Dota. Could the Frankfurt Major be the event where they show their strength once more?
CDEC Gaming came from relative anonymity outside of China to the hot name on everyone’s lips after placing second at TI5. They showed ruthless aggression throughout their run in Seattle, catching teams such as Cloud9, LGD, and even eventual champions EG off-guard. After taking a substantial break from the game, CDEC emerged shakily into 6.85 Dota. However, with the Frankfurt Major only days away, CDEC Gaming will still be considered a major threat by the rest of the field. Everyone knows what CDEC can do when they play their style well - it will be up to CDEC to overcome their current rough patch and peak at the right time, as they did at TI5.
In the months leading up to TI5, CDEC were one of the most active teams in all of professional Dota. They participated in several major leagues in China, as well as needing to progress through the Chinese Qualifiers for The International itself. This sheer wealth of experience on 6.84 made them a well-oiled machine by the time they competed in Seattle. They knew what they wanted to do, and had done it dozens of times before. They won 47 matches in the three months leading up to the Main Event, losing only 37 matches.
After The International, CDEC decided to take an extended break from the game, in order to let their players rest up after the stress of the biggest tournament in Dota. CDEC did not play for the entire month of September, emerging from the first time at ESL One New York. They managed to defeat Archon in theirfirst series on the new patch, but their performance looked notably rusty. CDEC simply seemed to play 6.84 Dota in 6.85. In an interview after the game, Sun ‘xh上头-Agressif’ Zheng asserted that what worked in 6.84 could still work in 6.85.
In the series that followed, they faced much sterner opposition in the form of Team Secret, and were promptly defeated 2:0. This has been the pattern for CDEC in 6.85 - they seem to be struggling to adapt to the current meta-game, relying often on 6.84 staples such as Gyrocopter. Their playstyle revolves around Aggressif being, well, aggressive - whenever he sees the potential for a kill, no matter where on the map that kill might be, Aggressif goes for it, with the support of his entire team. CDEC fight early and fight continuously. While they may not have had the greatest success in 6.85, currently sitting at 14 wins and 15 losses, they have always provided highly entertaining Dota for the viewers. They have come away from the Nanyang Championships, MLG World Finals, and the aforementioned ESL One New York without any major placings, but with greater understanding of 6.85 Dota.
In the past few weeks, Aggressif has shown great skill with the rising star of Slardar. The hero’s short cooldowns and ability to move around the map using Sprint help Aggressif be wherever he wants to be, ready to fight. CDEC utilize aggressive offlaners such as Spirit Breaker to complement Aggressif’s play, and it has shown some promise. CDEC’s roster also remained intact through the post-TI shuffle, which has helped them understand new team compositions without having to worry about finding synergy within the team itself.
CDEC Gaming’s roster is as follows:
- Liu ‘Garder’ Xinzhou
- Zhang ‘Q-HHH’ Yi
- Sun ‘xh上头-Agressif’ Zheng
- Chen 'XZ-TheAnswer' Zezhi
- Huang ‘Shiki’ Jiwei
CDEC are not yet in the superlative run of form that they were in during The International. Taking an extended break from Dota has caused the meta-game to leave them behind. Only now are they beginning to leave 6.84 behind and experiment with new hero compositions. Despite this, they are still filled with talent, and will put up a fight against all of their opponents at the Frankfurt Major. One thing is certain – CDEC will entertain.