Dota 2 streamer Mason “mason” Venne’s boisterous personality, wild following, and prior success at Dota 2’s biggest tournament have combined to make him the game’s most loved and hated Twitch streamer.
Mason is a semi-retired Dota 2 pro player who is now best known for his sometimes wild streams. He is one of the most popular Dota players on Twitch with audience peaks of over 11,000 viewers. His fanbase is infamous for its trolling nature, which occasionally spreads into other Dota 2 communities. mason is currently Rank 122 on the North American leaderboard, but he has been within the top ten several times. Between his high-skill gameplay and constant interaction with chat, mason has become one of Dota’s most popular entertainers.
mason recently gained notoriety from a substitute appearance on Arkosh Gaming, an anonymous death metal-themed Dota 2 team. He was supposed to use the official carry name Pale Horse to hide his identity, but he joined the lobby on his main account. mason then leaked some other Arkosh identities in a post-game interview.
Mason is still friends with several members of the Dota 2 pro scene, including Evil Geniuses’ superstar carry Artour “Arteezy” Babaev. North American upper division competitors simply TOOBASED take their name and logo from mason’s stream iconography. The gold tier of TOOBASED’s Supporter’s Club includes an in-game voice line of mason declaring that something is “simply too based, my friend.”
mason is also known for having four bans on Twitch, yet still retaining his partner status. Past offenses include an overly rowdy chat and saying a slur on stream. His chat is as infamous as the man himself. Custom emotes of frogs drinking wine being spammed by the hundreds is an average day on mason’s channel.
Originally a renowned ranked grinder in the North American Dota 2 scene, mason was invited to replace Clinton “Fear” Loomis on Evil Geniuses in the spring of 2014. The squad performed well with mason as its hard carry. His tenure unexpectedly ended right after winning over $1,000,000 with a third-place finish at The International 2014. He later played for Team Onyx and Digital Chaos and still occasionally stands in for North American pro teams.
The International 2014 was mason’s final and most famous tournament with Evil Geniuses. The North American squad was scheduled to face Natus Vincere late in the group stage. Evil Geniuses had already secured a playoff berth while Na`Vi needed one more victory to advance. mason himself performed well in the game, winning the best-of-one with 729 gold and 732 experience per minute on Lycan. His excellent play stood out in an otherwise lackluster performance from North America’s great hope.
Fans immediately got to work on a conspiracy theory. Some believed that Evil Geniuses owner Alex Garfield had a stake in Na`Vi, and thus would benefit from both teams making the playoffs. Fans postulated that Garfield told Evil Geniuses to throw their game, an order which mason disobeyed. The carry player’s swift departure from Evil Geniuses after winning $1,037,778 further stoked the flames.
Had he been blacklisted by Alex Garfield for refusing to lose? Probably not, but the theory is still a meme among mason’s fanatical viewers.