FalleN – From Rags to Riches28th Aug 2017 |
In recent years, eSports has become a huge industry attracting millions around the world to watch professional players at work. But what does it take to get there? The UK doesn’t really have a high level CS:GO scene and there are no British players currently in this year’s DreamHack Malmö event. We will focus instead on the Brazilian born “FalleN” whose rise to fame and success has inspired many.
Born 30th May 1991, Gabriel Toledo aka “FalleN” has been playing since 2003. Playing for many years in Counter-Strike Source, he was involved in many local tournaments but nothing major. In fact for the first six years of his playing it was more a hobby for him than an actual profession.
Even when the going was tough he persevered, drive and ambition pushing him forwards as it still does today. It wasn’t until 2009 that he finally had the chance to go to China to play in an International tournament. The excitement of the tournament, meeting new players and learning new techniques spurred “FalleN” into pursuing his dream further.
Hard Times Ahead
“FalleN” and his teammates suffered a lot of difficulties in their quest to the top. Playing in arduous conditions, 45 degree heat, sleeping together on the floor or in a shared bed, and playing games in inappropriate conditions such as on chairs and tables, the team made their house the playing ground. With such drive, and leadership by “FalleN”, the team pushed forward in an effort to reach their goal. By this point the team was playing CS:GO and “FalleN” was almost single-handedly propelling the sport along. Never taking no for an answer he pushed for investments, boosted the gaming industry, and eventually brought the team (playing for KaBuM) to the United States in order to play in further championships.
Once in the US he raised money so the team could enter the qualifier for ESL One in Poland. After that, it was a rollercoaster of events. Invitations to other international competitions flooded in, and the team went on to play in the ESL Pro League. The team went through various organisations such as, Keyd Stars, before “FalleN” finally ended up in SK Gaming in 2016. Here he has gone from strength to strength, earning himself a nomination for most influential Brazilian player and an award for Sports personality in 2016. His passion and drive, desire to constantly improve, defeating all odds are what have put him in his top position today. At this year’s DreamHack Malmö “FalleN” will be competing with SK Gaming as In-Game leader and AWPer; definitely a player to look out for.
Photo credit: DreamHack, David Patlut