By Raymond Carl Gato

Through the years, several netizens and pro-players have criticized Wise for not using assassin heroes. Regardless of criticism, unusual drafts have had a huge influence on what Blacklist International is today. Here's how.

Mobile Legends: Bang Bang professional team, Blacklist International, has become one of the esports powerhouses globally, undoubtedly made possible by their jungler, Danerie James "Wise" Del Rosario, who is known for his unorthodox picks in tournaments. Despite the pre-Mobile Legends: Bang Bang Professional League (MPL) Season 9 Philippine craze towards jungler assassins and marksmen, the M3 World Champions set the utility meta that favors their trademark "Ultimate Bonding Experience" (UBE) Strategy.

The UBE strategy refers to Blacklist International’s manner of team clashes. The tactic is simple yet dominant—stick together throughout the fight with healer heroes like Rafaela and Estes. Together with brilliant shot calls from their captain, Johnmar "OhMyV33nus" Villaluna, the regen and speed effects of a support roamer benefit Wise’s comfort against non-mobile junglers, giving him a proper approach and disengagement from team fights.

Before being traded to Blacklist International, Wise also specialized in mage heroes in ONIC Philippines from seasons 4 to 6.

Blacklist International competed in multiple professional MLBB tournaments in 2021, including Juicy Legends Pro Division, MPL Philippines Season 7 & Season 8, MSC, MPL Invitational, and the M3 World Championships. They also qualified for the SIBOL team to represent the Philippines in the 31st SEA Games, and are facing Indonesia in the grand final as of this writing. 

Some of the heroes that gave them the title are Aldous and Bane, both fighters with little means of escape in dangerous skirmishes. 

During the MPL Season 7 in May 2021, Wise debuted the Aldous pick against Omega Esports, sweeping the enemy team in an upper-bracket match, 2-0.

Aldous is currently off-meta due to its lack of mobility and long power spike. The hero increases the damage and gains stacks up to 500, and in the late game, squishy heroes could be one-hit by the Contract: Soul Steal. Hence, Wise’s itemization that focused on defense items made the hero tanky, combined with an additional 1500 shields at full stacks.

Danerie isn't named "Objective-wise" for no reason. His Bane pick in the MPL Season 8 dominated Onic Philippines during the Grand Finals with its high damage and fast objective taking, ending the series at 4-1.

Before taking a temporary break from MPL with OhMyV33nus, Wise ranked 2nd in average gold-per-minute (GPM) per game, having 744 ave. GPM in 202 games, pre-MPL Season 9 data states.

Wise also comes third in the MPL Philippines All-Time Kills Leaders, with 920 kills in 202 games. Del Rosario is one spot behind his ex-jungler teammate, Hadji, who is now their mid laner.

Blacklist’s intelligent drafter, Coach Bon Chan, said in a talk with Tier One Entertainment’s founder, Tryke Gutierrez, that assassin core heroes do not compliment their team composition because it will not sync with OhMyV33nus’s comfort picks. For instance, a flashy Ling would not benefit completely from the healing effect of Estes.

"Hindi kami manalo-nalo dahil sumasabay lang kami sa kung ano ang meta currently sa ML, pero no’ng tinry na namin kung ano‘yung strength ng bawat players, nag-work," he added.

Watch the interview here:

Among the original lineup of Blacklist International were Kiel "OHEB" Soriano, Edward "EDWARD" Jay Dapadap, Danerie Mark James "Wise" Del Rosario, Johnmar "OhMyV33nus" Villaluna, Salic "HADJI" Imam, Mark Jayson "ESON" Gerardo, Kristoffer Ed "Bon chan" Ricaplaza and Dexstar "DEX STAR" Louise Cruz Alaba.

New jungler, Kent "Kevier" Xavier, and assistant coach Aniel "Master The Basics" Jiandani were added to the team before the MPL Season 9 kicks off. Due to age restrictions on OHEB and EDWARD in the 31st Southeast Asian Games, Howard "Owl" Gonzales, Dominic "Dominic" Soto, and sixth man Russel Aaron "Eyon" Usi, took the roles in a bid for the gold medal.