Interview with the fan who came up with the name «Natus Vincere»

APEX / News / 13 March 2021 — 16:00

The name of the club ua Natus Vincere is known to the whole world of esports, but not many people know the origins. In 2010, held a contest for the best transcription of the acronym Na`Vi. The best suggestion was made by pt Bruno "HARTik" Esteves, a Portuguese expert in Latin and a devoted ua NAVI fan. 

After 11 years, we got in touch with pt HARTik to find out what he does now. He talked about his love for ua NAVI, his trip to BLAST: Lisbon 2018, and his journey in Valorant and Overwatch.

In 2010 you suggested the transcript for our tag. Tell us, how did the idea of Natus Vincere come to your mind at the age of 18? Maybe there were other interesting ideas?
ptBruno "HARTik" Estevens

The team was playing with the Na'Vi tag inspired on the movie Avatar, regarding the origins and the blue race greatness, the Na'Vi nation was set within the Esports community and people didn't link it anymore with the blue ones but the boys coming from Ukraine with tremendous firepower and amazing in-game discipline. Demolishing everyone in their way it was more than obvious to me that they were born to this, to win. 
It was the only idea and meaning that I could give while watching them playing event after event.

With that mindset as a motto and the fact that I've been always a fan of Latin, as the base and foundation of development into current languages and civilizations worldwide. Later I started to dig into how we could match that and fill that form and Esports history without knowing giving ua NAVI a purpose and stepstone for years to come. A house of champions born to win.

Where did you send your suggestion? Did someone get in touch with you after that?
ptBruno "HARTik" Estevens

My suggestion went on where a poll was done to find a name that suited these players and their ambitions. This was the start of a legacy, could I ever imagine that? Well Maybe...

ua Alexander "ZeroGravity" Kokhanovskyy was the man behind them who reached me at the time through the reporter Luis Mira who is also from Portugal.

How did you find out about a team like NAVI in the first place? Why did you start supporting the team?
ptBruno "HARTik" Estevens

I always loved a good team story of hard work,  dedication, and raw talent. In 2010 NaVi burst into world elite CS by winning almost every event they went to. Being a recent team with just one person backing them with Arbalet at the time, it was instant love as these guys needed more support, they've put the CIS region on a High-level and giving CS a new look at how the game is supposed to be played.

Counter-Strike team in 2010

Do you still follow the team’s success? If so, which teams do you follow?
ptBruno "HARTik" Estevens

Of course! Not only the success the CS team had for years but how the organization expanded into other titles with the same level of dedication and talent on the servers.

It is pretty clear from your social media you follow CS:GO, Valorant and Overwatch. What else is on your list of favorites?
ptBruno "HARTik" Estevens

CS was always my first love, the game that made me skip school with 12 yr old and get into a local LAN-House to rank on the ladders. With the years and the development of the Esports scene.

I've been pulled into following titles like League of Legends and Dota and always liked the approach and different way how a team fights or engages should be done. When Overwatch came out it was a must for me, combining the FPS taste with skill-oriented team play and gameplan. When Valorant hit, it was a must as it suits that kind of needs for me as an enthusiast in a way that OW did not and that's why mostly since the Beta of the came out, I have only been into Riot's FPS.

You played for pt Procom Gaming in Overwatch. Did you find any success there? Did you play in any other teams?
ptBruno "HARTik" Estevens

In Overwatch I only played in Portuguese teams pt Procom and pt EGN, being present at some LAN events and finals but without the success, I wanted as the game fell short and the scene wasn't evolving as it should overall, with very few or almost no events. 

Right now you are the manager and a coach for pt WhynotVLR. How did you get there?
ptBruno "HARTik" Estevens

Valorant was a mix of both things I loved, that feeling from CS when you got a headshot and a kill, with the abilities and different agents to step in as the metagame is constantly changing and your plan into each round/map also. I started playing it at the beginning but after a while, I felt like I could help more a team and the community if I could get the experience from past games and events into helping new young players to establish themselves and improve them as players and the whole team as a unit.

I truly believe that Portuguese players have the level to dominate the Iberian region (one of the top growing scenes in European Valorant) and put a word against European top teams if they can get into a routine where they can practice at a professional level and be among the best stack of players.

I wanted to start a project that we could be on that level and be a mix of experience and raw talent, first thing I needed was an IGL, a voice that could share the vision and hard work, pt Bati was for me one of the most hardworking IGL's on Valorant and one of the most dominant within the first year of events, so I reached him and we start picking up the players that we felt that had the room to progress and the will to keep working until we reach the top. That led to pt Turlin Nole and pt LohaN, both from experienced and high-tier teams in the region with titles on their belts, on pt Silent and pt DaviH we saw two young kids with a lot of talent and dedication. Can we reach the top? Whynot? 

And it's in that mindset that pt WhynotVLR is born while we search for an organization that could help us reach that.

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What do you think, does Valorant has a big future ahead? Is the scene getting filled up with the big organizations?
ptBruno "HARTik" Estevens

If we look at the experience that Riot Games had with the development of League of Legends as a game and the Esports industry at a global scale, Valorant can be a game that will break some milestones in overall Esports and FPS games. Riot constantly updating the game to make it balanced regarding agents/abilities, their ability to listen and be present within the community will be key factors to the game success and fan engagement.

As now a League franchise team can be the stepping mile for an organization, I see Valorant also going huge on that way, could take a while, but despite being a new game, we see already almost all the top tier organizations wanting their piece and working on their rosters overtime.

Smaller organizations I think are a little afraid to jump into the scene yet as it isn't rock solid and still evolving and adapting to give a better viewer and user experience. 

How is the situation with the tournaments and prize money in Valorant? Can it compete with other esports disciplines?
ptBruno "HARTik" Estevens

Only in the first year after the game launch back in April, Valorant bursts into the top5 viewed games on Twitch in all  2020 year, having more than 300 events and $ 2.000.000 in prize pools rewarded while Riot was still developing their plan and structure to Valorant as an Esport and the 2021 year, I think is quite a good factor to say that it will compete for sure with the other titles in viewership and prize pools/events. 

What do you think of the beef between VAL & CS:GO?
ptBruno "HARTik" Estevens

I remember people asking that when Overwatch came out, there will always be a fight between the same ganre of games, as for now CS and Valve are ahead because of all the history and player/fan building over years, but I think they lack innovation and support for players and teams. That is where VAL and Riot work better, and with the years and the constant adaptive system to the community, VAL has without a doubt a chance to strive ahead. 

Would you like to play Valorant at a professional stage?
ptBruno "HARTik" Estevens

Being a professional player and being present on a big crowded stage is my dream since I sit on that LAN-house with just 11/12 yr old, no matter what game i deep into, that kind of feeling and desire will always be there. But nowadays with the age of almost 30 and the experiences that i got both from gaming and professionally related work i think my dream would not be playing, but instead providing teams and players tools to pursue that same dream and get on that stage. 

Do you remember what was the first game you run on your PC? What was it like?
ptBruno "HARTik" Estevens

I remember going to the LAN-House all day to play CS 1.5 as I didn't have pc at home when my parents got me one... Was that kind of kid that it was very hard to get me off!

I remember as it was yesterday playing my first cs_rio and cs_office vibing and nervous to get the hostages to a safe zone without hurting them. And after that, it was a snowball of CS, CS, CS with some GTA or WoW on the mix. 

You are also a graphic and web designer. How long have you been doing it? Do you have any work to share with us?
ptBruno "HARTik" Estevens

I've been doing that for around 5 to 7 years more as a hobby only in a freelancer context or single-sided projects but then had to "stop" as sadly I've been working outside of that area for some time now. 

Do you sometimes play CS 1.6 for old times’ sake?
ptBruno "HARTik" Estevens

Have not played the game for a long time, sometimes I can hop into CSGO just to chill around and keep track of changes, but I don't say no to an old fashion 1.6 Aztec pug by any chance!

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Could you imagine ten years ago that esports would grow to such a scale? Do you think it will soon be on the same level as big sports?
ptBruno "HARTik" Estevens

Always had that kind of feeling, that we can vanish the gap between Esports and traditional sports, as we see a much larger audience and better platforms to help on that either is an online or offline event, we already see millions of dollars invested to reach that level in every corner of the globe. Keeping the pace like that in more than 10 years Esports will be at the Olympics, you heard it here first. 

Have you ever been to LAN with the participation of ua NAVI? If yes, which team was it, and at what tournament? Share what was it like?
ptBruno "HARTik" Estevens

In 2018 BLAST Pro Series did one of their circuits stops here in Portugal, in Lisbon, bringing with ua NAVI teams like dk Astralis, us Cloud9, eu FaZe, br MIBR and se NiP. ua NAVI would eventually lose to dk Astralis 2-1 in the Grand Finals with ua s1mple leading the charge, as normal coming from him.

It was a dream to experience that vibe that was felt in the arena, and I'm pretty sure everyone present was feeling the same, it was just speechless... Watching that kind of competition with my favorite teams and all time CS player, ua s1mple, in the biggest event ever in my home country, it will be marked forever and especially nowadays where we can all wish these Covid days to be over and offline events to be back to normal soon as possible. 

What advice would you give yourself if you could go back to 2010?
ptBruno "HARTik" Estevens

Never give up on what makes you happy no matter what people say.
And Life is a b*tch get stronk! 

Are there any oldies among us who have been following ua NAVI since the beginning of our journey? Let us know in the comments below what was your favorite events involving our team! #navination