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Fade Ends Brief “Retirement” to Sign with Team Aster

Michael Hassall  | 
Fade, formerly Vici Gaming

Fade returns to Dota 2 with Team Aster. (Image via DreamLeague | Photo by Adela Sznajder)

Former Vici Gaming four position and support main Pan “Fade” Yi has announced his return to competitive Dota 2 after a short retirement. The news, which first appeared on Fade’s Weibo, before being translated and summarized on the Dota 2 subreddit, comes just two weeks after his original retirement announcement.

As per the Reddit translation, Fade’s post explains that his contract with Vici Gaming officially ended today (09/08/2019), and he has joined Team Aster as that squad’s position five support player. Throughout the announcement, Fade elaborates on the circumstances leading up to his departure, including his talks with Royal Never Give Up’s manager during The International 2019, and his desire to not create more drama than necessary.

Fade was most recently a part of the Vici Gaming lineup. They secured an early qualification for TI9 during the DPC regular season. VG was a staple of every Major this year, and one of the examples used to suggest a return to Chinese dominance in the game. Fade was a crucial part of this success; his aggressive and high-level support play facilitated his team’s success throughout the season.

At the championship tournament itself, the team flew through groups, advancing to the upper bracket, before being sent to the lower bracket elimination matches by fellow Chinese team PSG.LGD. VG ultimately fell short of an Aegis win at the event, falling to eventual semifinalists Team Secret.

A short retirement and subsequent return to play has become somewhat of a cliche in Chinese pro-Dota. Fade himself acknowledged the trend in his announcement, describing his absence as “2 weeks of Chinese retirement”, and comparing his “sudden change of mind” to the “switching power treads.” He also repeated his apologetic sentiment towards his former teammates and coaches, expressing a desire for his new team to make a payment towards his previous organization.

Fade joins Song “Sccc” Chun, Kee Chyuan “ChYuan” Ng, Lin “Xxs” Jing, and Ye “BoBoKa” Zhibiao as the starting roster for Aster, giving the lineup an impressive amount of International experience. Two of its members took part in The International 2017 with Invictus Gaming. And Sccc was part of the Newbee squad which narrowly lost out in the finals of that same tournament, to winners Team Liquid. Fade’s original announcement can be found on Weibo.

Michael Hassall
Michael Hassall
Michael is a Brit-based esports generalist and timezone traveler. He spends his free time polishing his collection of fighting game tournament participation trophies.