ESL has finally unveiled its own Dota Pro Tour, planned to exist alongside and complement Valve's existing DPC, and boating a total prize pool of $17 million.
DreamLeague 2023 dates and format
That's confirming earlier reports that ESL was planning such a league, and had been circulating a document outlining their intentions to various teams competing at the recent Lima Major.
The new tour is set to begin with the long-anticipated return of DreamLeague, with Season 19 due to take place from April 9 to 23 this year. DreamLeague Season 20 will then kick off a few months later, running from June 11 to 25.
The two DreamLeague Seasons will kick off the ESL Pro Tour and will see a total of 16 teams competing. The teams will be split into two Group Stages, the first of which will feature two Groups of eight teams competing in best-of-two round-robin matches. The top four teams in each Group will advance to the second Group Stage, while the teams in 5th-8th place will be eliminated from the tournament.
The second Group Stage will see the eight remaining teams bundled together in a single group. Matches will be best-of-three, with the teams in first and second place moving to the Playoff's Upper Bracket, while the teams in third and fourth place will participate in the Lower Bracket. The bottom four teams will be eliminated from the tournament.
Once in the Playoffs, the four teams will compete in a double elimination bracket through best-of-three matches, except the best-of-five Grand Final.
The total prize pool for the tournament will be $1,000,000, with the winner receiving $300,000 alongside an invitation to Gamers8's Riyadh Masters, running from July 17-30 this year. Invites to DreamLeague will be distributed by the teams' world ranking, with the broadcast due to be hosted in Stockholm.
The new Pro Tour is designed to complement "Valve's existing DPC ecosystem," according to ESL, "while supporting the Dota 2 scene and helping it grow." There are currently no plans to have live audiences at either DreamLeague event, which will take place entirely online with teams flying in to various European countries to compete.
It seems that the Dota 2 esports scene is about to get busier than ever. And you'll be able to follow along with every moment of it right here on Luckbox - just click here to see our upcoming Dota 2 match schedule. And before the ESL Pro Tour kicks off next month, why not sign up to claim your free 100% bonus?