Steven R. November 26, 2019
The ex-Team Liquid Dota 2 roster finally has a name, and not everyone is a fan.
The squad helmed by Kuro “KuroKy” Salehi Takhasomi is now going by the name Nigma. The revelation was made on Twitter by the players, which was accompanied by a short video that expands on the teases made with short GIFs a day prior. The team also used the tagline “the end of one journey is the beginning of another.”
Fan response to the unveiling was resoundingly negative.
Beastcoast Dota 2 streamer Alex “Sheepsticked” Roberts said as much in Twitter, simply asking “bruh, who still thought this was a good team name?”
She wasn’t alone in the sentiment either, with critics saying that the new name ranged from being silly to coming uncomfortably close to the similarly spelled racial slur. Whether fan response will enact a change on this front is unknown and it is unclear how deep into the process the team is on this front. Though they have a logo and have established handles on both Facebook and Twitter, it’s unclear if they are positioned to do an about-face on the name.
The organization offered a clarification on Twitter about the name's origin.
"Thank you for the warm welcome everyone. The name's origin comes from the Arabic language and means Star. We hope to deliver you guys enjoyable games and much more," they said.
Regardless of the name, the return of the second-place team from The International 2019 is set to shake up the Dota 2 scene in a big way.
Nigma returning to Dota 2 for DreamLeague Leipzig Major
Nigma is set to boast the entirety of the Team Liquid lineup from TI9:
- Amer "Miracle-" Al-Barkawi
- Aliwi "w33" Omar
- Ivan Borislavov "MinD_ContRoL" Ivanov
- Maroun "GH" Merhej
- Kuro "KuroKy” Salehi Takhasomi
The team was solid throughout the 2018-2019 Dota Pro Circuit Season, but posted an amazing performance at the season-ending event. After a shockingly bad showing in the TI9 group stage, the Liquid team flew through the entirety of the lower bracket and eventually reached the grand finals of the event. Though the team fell to OG in the grand finals 3-1, it was one of the most impressive showings in Dota 2 history and was worth nearly $4.5 million.
Though Dota 2 is in for a serious shift in the meta in the near future thanks to the upcoming Outlanders Update, the team has been consistently successful over the last three years to the point where it’s difficult to doubt them.
They should be returning to action in the qualifiers to the DreamLeague Leipzig Major. It is unclear where Nigma will be seeded, but the open qualifiers begin on November 28 while the regional qualifiers begin December 1.