ESIC opens investigation into alleged player complicity in Heroic’s spectator bug use

Luís Mira. Last updated: Sep 06, 2021
João Ferreira/DreamHack

The Esports Integrity Commission (ESIC) has confirmed that it has launched a formal investigation into the claims made by coach Nicolai ‘⁠HUNDEN⁠’ Petersen that some of Heroic’s players were complicit in his use of the spectator bug.

The announcement comes just days after the Danish coach provided ESIC with evidence allegedly supporting his claims that at least some of the players on Heroic were aware of the fact that he was using the spectator bug – for which he had to serve an eight-month ban.

According to ESIC, a formal investigation has been launched “despite the fact that this allegation is contrary to previous public statements” made by the coach. HUNDEN had initially claimed to have acted “on my own, without the knowledge of my teammates.”

ESIC bans 35 more CSGO Counter-Strike players for betting offences.
Valve / ESIC
ESIC has launched a new investigation about Heroic’s use of the spectator bug

The Danish coach changed his story just hours before ESIC confirmed that he had been banned for two years in a separate case involving the sharing of confidential and sensitive information belonging to Heroic with a competitor ahead of IEM Cologne.

In an emotional interview with TV2, HUNDEN revealed that he decided to come clean after realizing that “there is nothing called Counter-Strike for me after this”.

The evidence

Danish outlet TV2 showed on September 3 bits of evidence, including what appears to be a sensitive conversation between HUNDEN and Nikolaj “⁠niko⁠” Kristensen (who was playing for Heroic at the time the bug was used) in which the player said that “everyone on our team knew” about the bug use.

TV2 also released the excerpt from a server log that appears to show René ‘⁠TeSeS⁠’ Madsen, another team player, helping HUNDEN to get into the position from which the bug was used against Spirit in Home Sweet Home 5.

According to TV2, the logs have been reviewed by “one of the world’s leading referees”, who said that HUNDEN’s allegations that he had the help of the player “definitely make sense.”

It was also revealed that HUNDEN and the players were asked by Heroic to sign a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) that would prohibit them from discussing the spectator bug use. According to HUNDEN, everyone refused to sign the document.

Players tight-lipped

Heroic’s players declined to comment on the matter in a September 6 press conference ahead of the ESL Pro League playoffs. “There will be no answers about this situation,” the team said.

The Danish team are through to the quarter-finals of ESL Pro League Season 14 after cruising through their group with a 5-0 record. They will face the winner of the match between Liquid and fnatic on September 9.