"Training inspire us with confidence"UNiTED`hooch

hoochToday our virtual studio was visited by one of the most prominent representatives of Russian Counter-Strike school, member of the M5 team – Россия Counter-StrikeDmitry “hooch” Bogdanov. Dima told us about the most interesting moments of his private life and e-Sports career.
Dmitry is 23 and he is a graduate of the Moscow Finance and Law Academy. He prefers to spend his spare time in different ways, so as all the young men do: having fun, being with friends, playing poker on LAN. Moreover the player shared some information about the team’s training process and daily routine in anticipation of ESWC grand-final.

The majority knows you rather well, still I am sure there are some who have never heard your name. Please, tell us a bit about yourself: who you are, what you do.

Hello! My name is Dmitry Bogdanov and I am 23 years old, this year I’ve graduated from the Moscow Finance and Law Academy and nowadays I devote all my free time to Counter-Strike practice. I am better known as “hooch” in the gaming community – an active player of UNiTED team and concurrently a captain of the national team of Russia.

What kind of child were you in childhood? What was interesting for you when you were a kid? Do you have any other hobbies except e-Sports?


When I was a kid I was a very naughtily-active child and often found myself in all sorts of interesting stories. My brother has being teaching me that doing sports is well since childhood, so I used to spend all my spare time in school playing football with my friends. Nevertheless I’ve never forgotten about the other games: table tennis and badminton are still being my passion :)

How did you get acquainted with games? What were your first clans, and when did you realized that playing Counter-Strike not for fun but seriously and professionally?

I’ve been connected with games since childhood, it might be even said that I’ve passed through the whole game evolution. My first platform was Dendy, and then father brought me Sega from Korea with five discs, after this I got Nintendo, further PSP and computer. First acquaintance with Counter-Strike happened in a small center in my area and I loved this game immediately (!). At the beginning it was simply pleasant to play and we with the guys became the best in our club, yet then once we came to the tournament in Meridian where first saw the tournament maps. The captain of a team we were facing and lost to deceived me with the map and I got very upset by the fact guys were waiting around eight hours, then played one game and went home because of my mistake.  Since that moment a desire to beat that lad was born and while reaching this goal I unwittingly for myself became a progamer. Well, if sober minded, then probably Flashback was the first professional team, although we were not paid, still the case was treated with full responsibility.

What do you think about the Russian-Ukrainian Counter-Strike scene in general? What areitsadvantages and disadvantages? Who can claim top positions in the nearest future?

Both scenes are obviously on the rise, especially the Ukrainian one. We possess at least four teams of world class, and in my opinion we’ve never had such type of situation on the territory of the former USSR. Moreover our national squads will likely visit ESL European Championship together. Advantages are in that all the players are playing by heart and fully understand that what they do. The only thing missing is perhaps some emotional stability though here the mentality of our countries plays its role :) Many talented teams have appeared nowadays, KERCHNet or USSR for example, which compete with the best CIS teams almost equally and it pleases a lot that there are extremely competitive rosters.


I know you play poker actively. What are your thoughts about the mass integration of poker sites and functionaries in competitive gaming?  Is this good for the cybersports sphere development or bad?

In fact I haven’t been playing ONLINE for already two years, only on LAN with friends. I believe it is good that poker scene intersects with e-sports, anyhow there are much more pluses in this case.

Many poker communities invest huge amounts of money in e-Sports development. Why do investments come mainly from sites specializing in poker? Doesn’t it matter what gives you money - Pokerstrategy or Gazprom?

Simply very many people playing computer games play poker also so it is logical that poker rooms do investments. E-Sports scene is too young for Gazprom, yet the support of some teams by such brands as Coca-Cola, Pepsi or Adidas already means much, I hope in five years it would be quite real to see Gazprom-gaming :)

What is your opinion about the CIS tournaments in general and Arbalet Cups in particular? Is there a tournament you would love to win more than other?

I have a dream to win any world championship no matter what its title would be only the list of participants is important. There are not too much tournaments on the CIS territory - ASUS and Arbalet Cup to be correct. If not Murat Zhumashevich and Dmitry Kuznetsov – we wouldn’t have had them either, so thank them very much for this, they do a great job. It seems to me that Russian companies haven’t realized yet that future is for cybersports, no new tournaments or sponsors show up in consequence.

You’ve been a part of Virtus.pro but afterwards have left the team. What did prevent them from rehabilitating in the international arena?

It is not too much water has flowed since that time. When I retire be ready to hear what was wrong in Virtus.pro:)

Mentioning latest tournaments, particularly ESWC preliminary in Russia, what was the reason of your successful performance? Why was the final so easy? After all the score speaks itself.

Teams only had a week to prepare for an opponent and do their best on two maps. forZe changed nothing in their game style so it was quite easy to adapt to them. Training inspire us with confidence so we are totally prepared.  


How long have you been training before the qualifications? Whom and how did you face? And overall describe please your schedule especially in ESWC grand-final eve?

We’ve been training every day with the best teams of Europe – basically with the Swedes and Danes. Recently my routine looks something like that: I wake up some around 11 o’clock, take a shower and drink a cup of coffee, next go to the swimming pool. After we meet with the guys and move to some café where we buy food and cook it at home. Subsequently I play CSDM or IHL gazers, after we analyze the maps and work the rounds out. Further it is time for PCW till the late night and if it is not too late I start playing a couple of gazers again. And certainly I try to follow FIFA World Cup at least through one eye.

Who would you like to face at grand-final itself and who is the biggest threat as for you?

Anyone, we don’t focus on this. In fact every team is dangerous in their own.

You received maximum support from the fans and became one of the eStars Seoul participants, what are your thoughts about this event?

Today I was told that our invite was taken away which undoubtedly upset us greatly. But all the same thanks BraBlay soldiers!

Your team consists of different countries representatives. What are the difficulties of such international squads?

We all were born in one country so this is not a background for any problem. And in general we as all normal people have some misunderstandings and quarrels, though each player is a professional and understands that it is a common business and able to apologize if something went wrong.

What are your goals and whether they do differ from the goals of your team –UNiTED?

I suppose all the players obeyed to have one common and main goal – to become the best, that’s what we’re focusing on!


Do plan to create your own team’s website?

At the moment we barely have time for this we just decide who to hire to the post of manager and as only this question will be solved our own site will come in sight. Now you are able to join fan-group in Vkontakte.

One of the most important factors of the team’s development is international tours, do you plan such events? Summer GameGune is coming soon, for example.

GameGune is held in the same dates as WCG Russia so I guess we will miss Bilbao tournament. Now we are going to Paris, afterwards I wish we will cope with getting visas and will fly to Dallas at Arbalet Cup USA. Next WCG Russia Preliminary will be waiting for us. We’ve planned to visit e-Stars Seoul, but at the last moment the organizers denied our invitation yet I feel that we still have a chance to get there anyway. Then it will be ASUS ESL ENC, so the summer is going to be hot:)

Are there any significant secrets in Counter-strike? Any game mysteries that should be revealed to novice players?

You are to work on your mistakes, progress and not disturb the other play. Altogether one can write a book about Counter-Strike secrets.

Can a modern young guy expect to live on the money earned on e-Sports?

Indubitably, if he is successful in this field naturally.

Can you imagine yourself in cybersports in 10 years for example? Have you ever considered that after “retirement” you will continue e-Sports activity but only in a different role?

Clearly it is possible, but do not want to propose in advance because everything can happen.

Thank you for the view. Say something at last to us, you may send greetings and wish something to your fans.


Thank you for excellent questions. Thanks to Murat Zhumashevich aka Arbalet for support of our team and e-Sports in general. Thanks to our faithful fans, who are the best. Thanks to our haters for not letting us an opportunity to relax. :) I would love to convey greetings to gamers from all around Russia whom I got acquainted due to Counter-Strike. Say hello to my loved girlfriend Ksusha and my best friend Mager! See you at the tournaments and do not forget to support us!
                                                                                                        Photos - gameinside.ua