Jang Jae-ho

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Jang Jae Ho
Moon
Jang Jae Ho at WCG 2008 Grand Final.jpg
Jang Jae Ho at WCG 2008 Grand Final
Status Active
Date of birth (1986-12-14) December 14, 1986 (age 27)
Nationality South Korea
Games Warcraft III
StarCraft II
Professional career
2005-2006 Mousesports
2006-2008 MeetYourMakers
2009-2011 WeMade FOX
2012 Fnatic

Jang "Moon" Jae Ho (AKA spirit_moon) (Korean: 장재호, Hanja: 張宰昊, born December 14, 1986) is a South Korean professional gamer of the popular Blizzard real-time strategy games Warcraft III and StarCraft II. He is seen by many as the best Night Elf player in the world. Jang Jae Ho is a five time world champion and has won three televised national South Korean leagues as well as four seasons of MBCGame's World War. He is particularly known for his excellent micromanagement and innovative strategies. He is often seen using strategies that later set the benchmark for many Night Elf players and was nicknamed the "5th Race" by Gametv.com. He has played and won more televised WarCraft III games than any other Warcraft III players. Jang Jae Ho is featured in the documentary film Beyond the Game.[1]His prize money of Warcraft 3 exceed $356,738.93 which is the highest among all players in Warcraft 3 history[2] and his total prize money ranked top 10 in all electronic players by now.[3]

Jang was playing StarCraft II but was teamless, and is now retired from professional gaming.

Professional gaming history[edit]

Korean Champion[edit]

After Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos was released July 2002 a professional competitive gaming scene supporting the game developed in South Korea. Jang Jae Ho quickly rose to become one of the most prominent players in this scene, winning his first big tournament by beating Jung Hee "Sweet" Chun in the finals of televised league MBC Sonokong Prime League II in 2003. He defended his championship title in the finals of next edition of the league (which took place later that year), and lost to Park Se "Swain" Ryong who was at one point down 2 maps (the match is considered one of the greatest comebacks in WarCraft III history).

By January 2004 Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne (released July 2003) replaced Reign of Chaos as the game of choice for professional competitions and at this time Jang Jae Ho was recognized as one of South Korea's greatest WarCraft III players, but had limited exposure globally as he had at this point not competed in any competitions outside of South Korea.

World Champion[edit]

Known for his innovative strategies, fans nicknamed Jang Jae Ho "Fantasista". After the release of The Frozen Throne he developed into the dominating player of the Korean WarCraft III scene (which he is considered still today). Few major Korean competitions concluded in 2004 (aside from several qualifiers for international tournaments only the MBC Daum Prime League IV). Jang Jae Ho qualified for the 2004 World Cyber Games global finals, meaning he would make his first international appearance.

He was considered the insider favorite for the tournament which took place in San Francisco, California. He was stopped by his countryman Tae Min "Zacard" Hwang in the round of 16 however, considered a major upset since Jang Jae Ho had an unbeaten televised record versus Tae Min Hwang's race of choice, Orc.

Upon his return to Korea he progressed to the last stages of the MBCGame Prime League V and the 2004–2005 Ongamenet War3 TFT Invitational. He eventually progressed to the finals of both which were set to take place in early 2005, he was also invited to a new televised league with an international field of participants named World e-Sports Games meaning he was competing in three televised leagues simultaneously.

He went undefeated in the first season of the World e-Sports Games, beating names as Fredrik Johansson and Li "Sky" Xiaofeng. The eventual finals cast him against the player that knocked him out of the World Cyber Games, Tae Min Zacard, who he proceeded to beat 3-0.

The league was followed intensely by WarCraft III fans around the globe and fully established Jang Jae Ho as a gaming icon. Around the same time he won MBCGame Prime League V and became the runner-up of the 2004–2005 Ongamenet War3 TFT Invitational, losing to Korean prodigy Jang "FreeDoM" Yong Suk in the finals after being up two maps. This further enhanced his reputation as the world's best WarCraft III player and made him one of the best paid gamers of the time; winning US$50,000 in a span of months.

Throughout the rest of 2005 he would win the second season of the World e-Sports Games beating Kim Dong "Gostop" Moon in the grand finals, the MBCGame Warcraft League and several tournaments in China. His winnings in the year were approximately US$83,000 which was by then the largest sum won by any player throughout a year in WarCraft III.

He also signed with the Korean company Pantech & Curitel during this time, representing them in leagues.

During these events a "rivalry" was created between him and Dutch professional gamer Manuel "Grubby" Schenkhuizen by fans. Jang Jae Ho was dominating competitions in South Korea including the globally diverse World e-Sports Games while Manuel Schenkhuizen had what was considered a dominating run in international competition, holding at one point the two most prestigious international titles; that of the World Cyber Games (which he won in 2004) and the Electronic Sports World Cup (which he won in 2005).

As they dominated different circuits they did not meet in any off-line matches throughout the 2005 year . Despite several online matches the rivalry was not resolved during this time as Jang Jae Ho was perceived as having a "racial advantage" with his Night Elf vs. Manuel Schenkhuizen's Orc.

2006 Slump[edit]

By late 2005 Jang Jae Ho's results weakened, he was eliminated from the second group stage of the World e-Sports Games in the longest tie-breaker (for second place) of the series history which included him, Korean professional gamer Jae Wook "Lucifer" Noh and Swedish professional gamer Kim "SaSe" Hammar.

He signed with Danish professional competitive gaming team MeetYourMakers in February 2006.

He was considered the favorite for the masters of the World e-Sports Games, which took place April 21 – May 3, 2006 in Hangzhou, China. This eight player invitational saw all top two finishers of previous seasons return, and invited a number of players considered the world's strongest at the time.

He went undefeated through the group stages of the tournament, beating French professional gamer Yoan "ToD" Merlo, Kim Dong Moon and Chinese professional gamer Sun Ri "XiaOt" Wai. This cast him against Manuel "Grubby" Schenkhuizen in the semi-finals, which would be their first match in a major international tournament.

Jang Jae Ho lost the match 1–3, which was considered an upset but not totally out of the realm of possibilities as a patch by Blizzard Entertainment as well as strategic adaption to Jang Jae Ho's playing style had made the Night Elf vs. Orc match-up more balanced. He subsequently lost the match for fourth place vs. Xiaofeng Li 2–3, a match widely anticipated by fans as Xiaofeng Li's World Cyber Games victory made him Jang Jae Ho's main WarCraft III rival in Asia.

After that he went through an extended dry spell in tournaments in what is termed a "slump". The professional Korean WarCraft III scene was in decline and Jang Jae Ho had to drop out of the only televised league the country had in the year, MBCGame International League, because it conflicted with the World e-Sports Games.

He did not qualify for any individual international tournament but did have success in team competitions. He was a key factor in Meet Your Makers victory of WarCraft III's most prominent professional team leagues, WarCraft 3 Champions League and the NGL One Professional league. His dry spell ended in October 2006 when he won Global Gaming League's Digital life in New York City, New York, picking up 5,000 USD. He went on to do well in a series of televised show matches in South Korea, beating Manuel Schenkhuizen 2–0 in a US$10,000 match in the Korean "SuperFight" series.

Manuel Schenkhuizen commented afterward:

"I think the old Moon, the Moon from 2005 is back."

In December he was invited to International Electronic Sports Tournament in Beijing, China, beating Xiaofeng Li in the grand finals he won US$20,000 in the tournament and finished 2006 with a major win.

2007 Domination[edit]

It was reported February 2007 that Jang Jae Ho had extended his contract with Meet Your Makers for a year with a US$10,000 monthly salary.[4]

Building on his strong run towards the end of 2006, 2007 looked to be Jang Jae Ho's strongest year yet. He has so far this year defended his MBC Game World War title four times, which is a televised series of show matches in South Korea paying out US$10,000 to a seasonal champion.

He won the biggest amount of prize money ever turned out in a WarCraft III competition in Moscow, Russia by winning Game-X. He has also won in China, one of which was considered to be attended by almost all top tier professional Warcraft III players; the World Series of Video Games stop in Wuhan, China. Moon won over US$130,000 in prize money in 2007.

2008 Legendary Status[edit]

Jang Jae Ho started his year with a second place finish in the Chinese tournament, PGL behind the upcoming Chinese human player TH000. He then went on to win the Blizzard Worldwide Invitational beating at this time the world's best Orc player Lyn in a best 2 out of 3 sets series. The next week he won his second title of the year the ESWC Masters of Paris beating his arch Rival Li "Sky" XiaoFeng in the finals. Although, highly favored to win the ESWC title and solidifying his position as the world's best player, he was knocked out in the group stages alongside his teammate Grubby. However, he managed to qualify for the World Cyber Games taking second place in his country for the second time in a row. At the global finals, he made it to the grand finals only to lose at the hands of his team mate Grubby, the series was widely regarded as the clash of the titans as both Moon and Grubby are the highest earners in terms of prize money. He recently showed that his loss to Grubby did not affect his confidence and managed to win the IEF 2008 tournament in Wuhan beating his arch-rival Li "Sky" XiaoFeng again. On the way, he also defeated French professional player Yoan "ToD" Merlo 3–0 in the group stages.

With the tides turning in racial balance even Moon himself admitted that "Orc was imba",[5] but he has fought on becoming one of the only Night Elf players still able to withstand the apparently inevitable Orcish monopoly. However his legendary status not only extends to his playing style but also for the content of his character, known and respected for being humble despite his level of stardom, and even revealed he still lives with his grandmother despite international success.[6]

However, ESNation licensed the franchise rights for all MeetYourMakers teams to Frontspawn ApS,[7] resulting in the MYM WarCraft team being released immediately.[8] The franchisee relaunched the MYM WarCraft team but without Moon on the roster.[9] It was later revealed that Moon had signed a three-year contract with the Korean team WeMade FOX for $500,000 which made him the highest paid esports player at the time, a title which was previously held by Korean professional gamer NaDa (who is also a member of WeMadeFox).[10]

Switch to StarCraft II[edit]

Moon started playing Starcraft II competitive following its release, but it was only after his switch recruitment to Fnatic on January 17, 2012, that he became a full-time player.[11] His first notable achievement was making it into the GOMTV Global Starcraft II League Open Season 2.[12] He has since had little success in the GSL, but has done better in non-Korean tournaments, placing second at the Intel Extreme Masters 5,[13] and being one of the Koreans to play in the North American Star League.[14] Moon also played in the 2011 Summer DreamHack LAN where he placed second, losing the Grand Finals to LiquidHuk for 2–3. He placed 2nd at the IPL4 Pacific Qualifiers, losing to MarineKingPrime

Major Accomplishments in Warcraft III[edit]

1 on 1[edit]

  • 2013 2nd World Cyber Games (China) ($3,000)
  • 2011 1st IEF Korea ($10,000)
  • 2010 1st NGL-One ($8,000)
  • 2009 2nd Extreme Masters 4 ChengDu ($2,500)
  • 2009 1st World Cyber Games Korea National Final ($1,600)
  • 2009 4th E-Stars Seoul 2009 King of the Game ($800)
  • 2009 3rd Norton Anti-Virus GOMTV World Invitational ($800)
  • 2009 4th IEM3 Chengdu (US$1,000)
  • 2008 1st IEF (US$11,600)
  • 2008 4th ESL Continental Final Asia (US$1,000)
  • 2008 2nd IeSF Invitational (US$4,000)
  • 2008 2nd World Cyber Games (Germany) (US$7,000)
  • 2008 3rd NicegameTV War3 League Season1 (Korea) (₩2,000,000 := 1379USD)
  • 2008 1st ESWC Masters of Paris (US$2,500)
  • 2008 1st Blizzard Worldwide Invitational 2008 (Paris) US$11000
  • 2008 2nd PGL 2008 Warcraft III League Season3 Final (China) (40,000RMB := US$5,794)
  • 2008 4th NSL 2008 Warcraft III League Season2
  • 2008 1st PGL 2007 Warcraft III League Season2 Final (China) (80,000RMB := US$11,000)
  • 2008 1st CEG 2007 shaoxing (China) ($2,000 EUR)
  • 2007 3rd IEF MASTERS 2007 (China) (US$2,000)
  • 2007 2nd Afreeca Warcraft League 2007 (South Korea) (₩3,000,000 := US$3,000)
  • 2007 2nd Make Games Colorful 2007 (China) (US$5,000)
  • 2007 1st Lenovo IEST 2007 (China) (US$21,394)
  • 2007 3rd World Cyber Games 2007 (USA) (US$5,000)
  • 2007 1st GGL Digital Life New York (USA) (US$5,000)
  • 2007 1st China E-Sport Games Xi'an (China) (US$2,600)
  • 2007 1st GGL Digital Life Chengdu (China) (US$10,600)
  • 2007 2nd WEG e-Star Seoul (South Korea) (US$10,000)
  • 2007 1st MBCGame World War Grand Prix (South Korea) (US$20,000)
  • 2007 2nd Pro Gaming League (China) (US$4,000)
  • 2007 1st Dreamhack Summer 2007 (Sweden) (US$2,850)
  • 2007 1st Battle.net Ladder Season V Asia (South Korea) (US$1,000)
  • 2007 1st MBCGame World War III (South Korea) (US$10,000)
  • 2007 1st World Series of Video Games China (China) (US$5,000)
  • 2007 1st NSL (China) (US$2,500)
  • 2007 1st MBCGame World War II (South Korea) (US$10,000)
  • 2007 1st Game-X (Russia) (US$38,120)
  • 2007 1st MBCGame World War I (South Korea) (US$10,000)
  • 2006 1st MBCGame World War III (South Korea) (US$10,000)
  • 2006 1st MBCGame World War II (South Korea) (US$10,000)
  • 2006 1st Lenovo IEST 2006 (China) (US$20,000)
  • 2006 1st Superfight 2 (South Korea) (US$8,500)
  • 2006 1st Digital Life Gaming Tournament 2006 (USA) (US$5,000)
  • 2006 4th World E-Sport Games Masters (China) (US$1,000)
  • 2005 1st World E-Sports Festival (China)
  • 2005 1st International E-Sports Festival (China)
  • 2005 1st China Korea Cyber Games (China) (US$10,000)
  • 2005 1st World E-Sports Games Season I (South Korea) (US$20,000)
  • 2005 1st World E-Sports Games Season II (South Korea) (US$20,000)
  • 2005 1st MBCGame Warcraft League Season I (South Korea)
  • 2005 2nd OnGameNet War3 TFT Invitational (South Korea)
  • 2005 1st MBCGame Prime League V (South Korea)
  • 2004 9th World Cyber Games (USA)
  • 2004 3rd World Cyber Games, Korea (South Korea)
  • 2003 2nd MBCGame Prime League III (South Korea)
  • 2003 1st MBCGame Prime League II (South Korea)

Team and league competitions[edit]

  • 2008 1st WC3L Season 13 (China) (with Team MeetYourMakers)
  • 2008 3rd Road of the King (China) (with Team MeetYourMakers)
  • 2008 1st NGL-League One Season 4 (Germany) (with Team MeetYourMakers)
  • 2007 1st NGL-League One Season 3 (Germany) (with Team MeetYourMakers)
  • 2007 3rd WC3L Season 11 (Germany) (with Team MeetYourMakers)
  • 2007 2nd NGL-League One Season 2 (Germany) (with Team MeetYourMakers)
  • 2007 2nd WC3L Season 10 (Germany) (with Team MeetYourMakers)
  • 2006 1st Stars War II (China) (with Team Korea)
  • 2006 1st Transatlantic Finals (USA) (with JaeWook "Lucifer" Noh)
  • 2006 1st WC3L Season 9 (Germany) (with Team MeetYourMakers)
  • 2006 1st NGL-League One Season 1 (Germany) (with Team MeetYourMakers)
  • 2003 2nd OnGameNet War3 Pro League (South Korea) (with Team ZzoA FairS)

Online[edit]

  • 2006 1st inCup No. 11 2on2 (with JaeWook "Lucifer" Noh)
  • 2005/2006 1st in 6 InCups (US$1200)

Major Accomplishments in Starcraft II[edit]

  • 2011 2nd DreamHack Summer 2011 (50,000 SEK)
  • 2011 2nd Intel Extreme Masters World Championship ($6,500)
  • 2011 2nd China 1st 3D Electronic Games (€4,700)
  • 2011 2nd IPL 4 Pacific Qualifiers ($1,000)

Awards[edit]

Won[edit]

  • 2008 ESports Award eSports Player of the Year
  • 2008 Esports Award Best Warcraft 3 Player
  • 2008 ESports Award Korea Player of the Year
  • 2007 KeSPA Greatest WarCraft III Player Award
  • 2007 GGL Warcraft 3 Player of the Year
  • 2006 KeSPA Greatest WarCraft III Player Award
  • 2005 KeSPA Greatest WarCraft III Player Award

Nominated[edit]

  • 2007 ESports Award Best Warcraft 3 Player
  • 2006 GGL Warcraft 3 Player of the Year
  • 2006 Gosugamers GosuGamer of the Year
  • 2006 ESports Award Best Warcraft 3 Player
  • 2005 ESports Award eSports Player of the Year
  • 2005 ESports Award Best Warcraft 3 Player

Strategies and techniques[edit]

  • AoW (Ancient of War) Creeping Technique: Jae Ho is known for his excellent use of the Ancient of War to aid in taking out difficult creep camps. In addition, his hero and/or units will take only a minimal amount of damage.
  • Master Talons Strategy: Jae Ho is well known for reinventing and popularizing this strategy against Orc, originally created by Chinese Night Elf player "magicyang", by using a combination of heroes, generally the Demon Hunter, Beastmaster and Tinker, along with an army of Talons, to render the Orc's heroes useless. He used this strategy to defeat Manuel "Grubby" Schenkhuizen many times.
  • Night Elf Towering/Tower Push Strategy: The Night Elf towering/tower push is one of Jae Ho's signature and classic strategies. He uses this strategy mainly for the Undead vs. Night Elf match-up.
  • Night Elf Tri-Hero Pitlord Strategy: Jae Ho is highly praised for his incorporation of the Pitlord in his playing. He uses this strategy specifically for the Night Elf vs. Human match-up. Although the Pitlord is regarded as a weak hero by players, Jae Ho denies this opinion with his effective use of the Pitlord to decimate the Human casters.
  • Mass Master-Bears Strategy: Jae Ho popularized the use of master Druid of the Claw vs Orc. Today this strategy is very common in the Night Elf vs. Orc match-up.
  • Orb of Venom Strategy: Jae Ho was among the first who equipped his heroes with an Orb of Venom in order to counter harassment by Undead gargoyles.
  • Mass Expansion Strategy: When Jae Ho started to use this strategy, Blizzard Entertainment (the developers of Warcraft III) nerfed (weakened) it by increasing the Tree of Life's build time. Today it is still used by many Night Elves, especially in combination with the "Mass Archer/Talons + Priestess of the Moon – Strategy" vs Undead on the map Lost Temple.

References[edit]

External links[edit]