By Fantasy

We’re in the middle of the final stage of the Newerth’s Next Caster event, and only four potential co-casters remain. We reached out to each potential co-caster for an interview, hoping to gain insight into their motivations for casting, looking at their history, and their experience in the event.

Fantasy: Hello Shorkan, pleasure to talk to you, thanks for taking the time. How are your nerves this close to the decision that might make you the official Honcast co-caster?

Shorkan: I'm not sure I'm nervous about it, not saying that i'm confident about winning the event, but more so that I do this for the viewers. When people watch Honcast I want them to enjoy it and that's ultimately what I strive for when I cast.

Quite a confident statement regardless, so let me ask you something along these lines as well. When this competition started and you decided to sign up, did you expect to make it this far?

In the past, I've casted loads of Gold cycle matches with Quincy0191 so I think I had built up enough experience to be able to speak confidently in my casts. So yes, I was confident in my own ability to provide effective insight. In that regard I did expect to make it far, but myself being relatively new to the scene might not have gotten me quite the same fan base as FJ, Saintrox, and Znoowy. Ultimately it was down to the viewers and I'm really ecstatic I made it to the top four ^^.

Yeah, researching a bit about you I not only found casts of you, but also matches you played in. You are a accomplished in both regards and I've asked Znoowy and Saintrox the same question - what made you decide to switch from a more active role as a player to a more "passive" job in the booth?

I've heard from a lot of people that a co-caster for Breaky is one of the most important roles in the scene. You are heard every single weekend if not more. I guess in the end I wanted to switch to the caster role to provide the hype I expect from a co-caster. When I personally hear Breaky going crazy in the mic I want the co-caster to be the exact same way. It really hypes up the viewers as well, and I truly feel like I can bring that with my upbeat cocasting!

Usually the roles traditionally are Breaky as play-by-play hype caster, with his co-caster bringing the insight, being the more down to earth competitive insight. Do you feel like your style of extra hype still has enough room for the analytical aspect?

Definitely, by my extra hype I meant more along the lines of complementing Breaky's own hype, like when he's finished with the play-by-play casting I don't want there to be a huge difference in the tempo of the cast. I always make sure to let Breaky take over for the play-by-play casting.
Good point. Not only the permanent co-casting spot is on the line, but also a trip to DreamHack Summer - the ultimate return of HoN to that stage. Everyone has a bit of a special relationship to that prestigious event - how do you feel about it?

I've never been D: and I've always REALLY wanted to go. Living in the Netherlands has made it difficult to get a trip to the potential Dreamhack Summer. It has been on my bucket list since I started playing competitive HoN. To not only play there, but also meet all the other pro players.

What do you generally think of the move back to that stage, in the ultimate, overall picture of competitive HoN - give us your take and a level of hype ^^.

We've needed HoN to grow for a long ass time and this is definitely one way to do it again Fantasy! I'm truly ecstatic about this event. Increase the player base and increase the competitive hype and we're gonna get further than we have before. In my heart HoN is the most competitive of the three MOBAs - HoN, LoL, and DOTA 2 - and i'm sure others will see that as well!

Well, I ain't disagreeing with you, buddy, stuck with the game for years hoping, praying and believing. DreamHack has always been an incredible event and as of this moment we know a lot of competing teams already. You are applying for the competitive insight casting job, break down the tournament for us, as you would predict it.

In terms of who would take the win?

Who would take the win, who you see as favorites, who as darkhorse, who as the disappointment, whatever comes to mind.

With regards to the [China] and SEA teams I'm sure that they're going to want revenge on BMG first of all, but with BMG still not qualifying with these last four DHQ it isn't sure that they're even going to be playing at DreamHack. I'm going to have to put Sync as the favorites because they've been scrimming non-stop recently, also, Sweden is their home game while the World Finals were the away game. They are in their own environment and I think they're looking to sweep the stage.

Another contender for the crown would be Mint [Druidz eSport]. They took the first qualifier and have been performing well in the DBL games. I'm still going to have to favorite Sync though.

As we know from traditional competitions, even making it to the Top 4 can mostly be considered a victory in terms of getting your name out there. What path will you choose if you don't win? Will you continue with casting or try to get back into the playing role again, take another stab at the Diamond Division?

All I can say is, I don’t think i'm ever gonna stop playing of being part of HoN in the near future, if not as a caster then definitely as player.

Fair enough. Now closing out the interview, I've done this with the other two as well. What do you think separates you from your competition? What do you have, that the others don't?

When you listen to me casting I often have little tidbits of information about heroes that aren't used often, so very often I hope to surprise Breaky and the viewers with those extra bits of info. Also of course the hype I bring to the casts. and thanks for taking the time to interview me! it was a pleasure :)

Pleasure was mine, buddy. Thanks a lot. Want to use this opportunity though to make some shoutouts, thank people that helped you along the way?

Shoutouts to Team Who and definitely Slaskedyret for pushing me to do the co-casting and shoutout to my brother. Love you bro :)

Not forgetting the family. Classy move. Well, best of luck to you, hope to see you in Sweden!

Thanks to Shorkan for taking the time to talk to us, and best of luck in the competition. You can catch Shorkan and the rest of the Newerth’s Next Caster competitors on Honcast all week, counting down to the announcement of Newerth’s Next Caster next week!

About The Author: Fantasy
Fantasy is a journalist with four years of experience working in various eSports. He is currently the HoN Tour correspondent for the CIS and SEA regions, as well as an editor for both ESL Gaming and compLexity Gaming. In addition to his online endeavors, he studies Publicity and Communication, plays American football, and loves movies.