Evil Geniuses are in a league of their own in the Americas region. Their individual talent stands out and their unparalleled results are setting them apart from their peers in the region. Moving into TI5, Evil Geniuses are one of the favorites to lift this year’s coveted Aegis trophy.
Comprised of five individually talented stars including one “prodigy” and two of the game’s most seasoned veterans, the team is a beacon of light for the North American region. With such an outstanding presence and great tenacity as they overcome various hurdles, their TI5 direct invite was never uncertain.
Evil Geniuses inception and the SADBOYS interval
Since the organization’s foundation in 1999, it has always featured highly successful players. In 2011, Evil Geniuses would venture into the Dota 2 scene with a star-filled roster, including DotA 1 famed players Amel “PlaymatE” Barudzija, Jimmy “DeMoN” Ho, Rasmus “MiSeRy” Berth Filipsen, Clinton “Fear” Loomis, and Per-Anders “Pajkatt” Olsson Lille. In 2012, Saahil “UNiVeRsE” Arora would replace MiSeRy for a short period of time before leaving and then rejoining in 2013. Despite participating at The International 2, with both Fear and UNiVeRsE, and competing in The International 3 qualifiers, Evil Geniuses continued be “pulverized” by instability and roster changes. Evil Geniuses would eventually fall apart in December 2013.
A month later, in January 2014, Fear and UNiVeRsE were seen playing with a new team, SADBOYS, along with the new up and coming star Artour “Arteezy” Babaev and HoN players Peter “ppd” Dager and Ludwig “zai” Wåhlberg. They showed impressive results in a short period of time, sweeping through Team Empire, 3:0, in the ESP Shock Therapy Cup Grand Finals in early February, and boasting a 16:2 overall match record. The squad set their standards high and began their ascent to greatness. They would go on to be picked up by Evil Geniuses, in late February 2014.
Fear’s wrist injury and EG’s electrifying TI4 performance
Just as the team was starting to move at full speed, already pulling ahead of the other North American teams and establishing itself as a premier team, Fear was forced to go inactive, due to a wrist injury. He remained on the staff, as the team’s coach. Evil Geniuses decided to use Jacky “Eternal Envy” Mao as a stand-in for the StarLadder StarSeries 9 tournament and then turned to Mason “mason” Venne as a consistent stand-in for the remainder of the season’s competitions, such as The Summit 1, ASUS ROG DreamLeague Season 1, HyperX D2L Western Challenge, ESL One Frankfurt, and The International 4. Other than a lackluster performance at DreamLeague, Evil Geniuses continued to distinguish themselves, taking top three placements in all the competitions they attended in the 2014 season.
The monumental third place finish at The International 4 would be a cornerstone in the players’ careers and propel Evil Geniuses light years ahead of the competition. Fear returned shortly after the multi-million-dollar event and Evil Geniuses went on to take first place at the World E-sport Championships 2014, second place at ESL One New York and the StarLadder StarSeries Season 10 championship title.
Evil Geniuses start to falter
In the fall of 2014, a fifth place finish at the XMG Captains Draft Invitational would be first chalked up to a fluke – an off day performance for Evil Geniuses – especially since it was followed up only days later with another championship title: a first place finish at the ASUS ROG DreamLeague Season 2. Then, a week later, the team’s third place result at the Dota 2 League Season 5 and fourth place finishes at both The Summit 2 and Dota Pit League Season 2, would give way to some questioning and speculation that Evil Geniuses were starting to falter.
Soon after, Team Secret changed their roster, plucking both Ludwig “zai” Wåhlberg and Artour “Arteezy” Babaev from Evil Geniuses. The community was left gasping at what had just occurred and was sure this would be the defining moment signifying Evil Geniuses’ fall.
The Aui_2000 and Suma1L era
Evil Geniuses would not be shaken so easily. Part of what makes Evil Geniuses achieve greatness and sets them apart from others is how they handle the challenges they are faced with. Already having proven their resolve during the summer and at the height of the Dota 2 season, a roster change was not going phase Evil Geniuses out. Arteezy and Zai were immediately replaced with Kurtis “Aui_2000” Ling – who had been playing on team Cloud 9, and Syed Sumail “Suma1L” Hassan – a 15-year-old who had started to gain recognition in NEL, the North American Elite League. The change seemed rather unconventional, but would soon prove to be spectacular.
The new mix took Evil Geniuses to soaring heights from the rubble and ash of their last few months of sub-par performances. The new roster would make its debut at the Dota 2 Asia Championships, seizing the first place finish and their first championship title together at a tournament so remarkable it was dubbed “The International of the East”. Suma1L had proven his worth and skill.
Being selective in their tournament invite acceptance and participation, Evil Geniuses would then compete in only a handful of tournaments leading up to TI5. With second place finishes at the MLP Pro League Season 1, The Summit 3, and ESL One Frankfurt 2015, Evil Geniuses have reinstated their position as a class act, hoovering over the rest.
Evil Geniuses are, clearly, in a league of their own in both individual and team skill. Even their former team member, notorious Team Secret offlaner, Ludwig “zai” Wåhlberg, gave Evil Geniuses the nod in a recent interview with DotaBlast:
Inwards confidence is probably higher than outwards. Personally, I’m scared of playing EG.
Evil Geniuses roster:
Clinton “Fear” Loomis, Syed Sumail “Suma1L” Hassan, Saahil “UNiVeRsE” Arora, Kurtis “Aui_2000” Ling, Peter “ppd” Dager
Clinton “Fear” Loomis
Clinton is one of the “oldest” players in the North American Dota scene, in both terms of age and experience. He has been widely regarded as one of the best North American players since the game’s inception.
Fear began his Dota 2 career playing with UNiVeRsE, Pajkatt, Alexandru “ComeWithMe” Crăciunescu and Theeban “1437” Siva for Online Kingdom and competed in The International 2011. His journey to The International and his Dota 2 career were featured in the “Free to Play” documentary.
Following TI1, Fear would then join Evil Geniuses, in 2011. Other than his two-month departure from under the organization’s wing – when he continued to play with the same roster, under the SADBOYS tag – he remained with Evil Geniuses ever since.
Syed Sumail “Suma1L” Hassan
SumaiL made a name for himself as one of the best mid players in the NEL. Despite his young age, his talent being recognized by Evil Geniuses gave way to his first major team and the opportunity of a lifetime for the 15-year-old. SumaiL is still attending high school, but according to Evil Geniuses’ manager, Charlie Yang, the organization has coordinated well with his family to ensure that he is able to find a balance and be successful in his Dota 2 career, without giving up on his education.
Known for his Storm Spirit and aggressive Aegis steal attempts, SumaiL continues to demonstrate his exceptional talent and focus, being often described as “the Dota 2 prodigy”. TI5 will be SumaiL’s first International event.
Saahil “UNiVeRsE” Arora
Offlaner for Evil Geniuses, Saahil is a well known and accomplished veteran, having competed in all four previous Internationals.
In the first International, he played for Online Kingdom, alongside his long-time teammate Fear. Following The International 2011, he had brief stays with various teams, before joining Evil Geniuses, in 2012. At that time, he only remained on Evil Geniuses for a short period of time, before becoming the offlaner for team Dignitas, in January 2013. During his time with Dignitas, UNiVeRsE developed into one of the best offlaners and was credited with much of the team’s success. After finishing ninth at TI3, Saahil rejoined Evil Geniuses, where he would take a third place finish at The International 4.
UNiVeRsE is both feared and praised for his impeccable timing, and well-known for his Faceless Void plays.
Kurtis “Aui_2000” Ling
The Canadian support player first discovered DotA when he was nine years old. Kurtis began his Dota 2 career in 2012, playing carry for the up and coming North American team PotM Bottom, which was later picked up by Dignitas. UNiVeRsE joined him on Dignitas and the team would enjoy success and exposure.
After the team disbanded following The International 3, Aui_2000 then decided to switch to a support role in order to join RSnake.int, later re-branded to Speed Gaming. The squad ended up being picked up by Cloud 9, where Aui_2000 played with Jacky “Eternal Envy” Mao, Weh Sing “SingSing” Yuen, Armand “bOne7” Pittner, and Johan “pieliedie” Åström.
Kurtis began to excel at his new role and even managed to popularize the use of the most unfashionable item, Rod of Atos, which later became known as “the Rod of AUI”. Despite Cloud 9’s high achievements – including a fifth-sixth place finish at The International 4 – Aui left Cloud 9 and joined Evil Geniuses, during the January 2015 reshuffle set off by Team Secret, when they poached Arteezy and zai. Aui_2000 made his debut on the Evil Geniuses roster at DAC, where the North American team ended up taking the championship title.
Peter “ppd” Dager
Peter switched from Heroes of the Networth to Dota 2 in 2013. After The International 3, he was recruited together with his fellow HoN player, zai, to play for Super Strong Dinosaurs alongside established players ComeWithMe and Jingjun “Sneyking” Wu. It was after SSD disbanded that ppd teamed up to make SADBOYS, which was later picked up by Evil Geniuses. In a relatively short career, ppd has already placed third at The International 4, with Evil Geniuses.
Peter is very outspoken on his social media and in vlogs usually following big news in the Dota 2 community or events he attended. He is known as the King of Salt and has built a fan base that enjoy following his “salty adventures” on his stream.