The Dota 2 season is many things to many people, but the one unifying aim or goal the scene shares is the desire to go to The International, which will be held in Shanghai in 2019. Unlike other open circuits, Dota has a points system (DPC) built around performances in Valve-sanctioned events, primarily Minors and Majors, and with the end of DreamLeague Season 11 from Stockholm nearly upon us, the Pro Circuit points are starting to shake out and reveal who is going to be applying for a VISA for China for TI9.
The system is a little complex but, fundamentally, comes down to the points threshold to be sure of a place in the big show. With a total of 75,000 points available from Majors, and a further 2,500 on the table at the Minors, it takes a few events before the leaderboard begins to shape up, but with DreamLeague Season 11 close to a conclusion, we are starting to see shapes in the cloudy water.
TI9 will feature 18 Dota 2 teams, 12 of whom will qualify through DPC and another six via regional qualifiers in China, Southeast Asia, North America, South America, CIS and Europe.
By the end of DreamLeague, 45,000 of the available Major points will have been awarded, meaning there is only 30,000 on the table for teams still needing to book at spot in Shanghai, but the teams that started the season well have already made good progress. The two Majors winners so far are Virtus.pro and Team Secret, and that success combined with their performances at the Majors they didn’t win outright means they are already sure of a place at TI9, which is great for fans of those orgs and neutrals alike.
Alongside those two, Evil Geniuses are also rewarded for their consistency at this level with a spot on the main stage, which TI9 basically is for Dota. Third in Chongqing and third at the Kuala Lumpur Major is obviously a tough run of results, but the system is intelligent enough to realise how hard that would be to achieve, and EG will be hoping they can turn those close losses into stunning wins when the time is right and they hit their peak.
Remaining Dota 2 Majors in 2019
Dreams in the making at DreamLeague
Finishing outside the top four in Sweden won’t have pleased EG, who really cost themselves a chance at progress with their shock loss to Keen Gaming, but it was VP that eliminated them and that is no shame. There may have been a degree of pressure off for the Americans with their spot in China safe, but VP also know they are going to TI9, and that didn’t stop them from taking the W.
Of the remaining sides in Sweden there are a few who could make good headway with a decent result, and if PSG.LGD are able to turn their upper bracket semi-final into a tournament victory they will also secure themselves a spot at what for them will be a ‘home’ TI, despite their French dressing. A Fnatic win would also give them a pretty solid chance of being in China, but that would be a genuine shock despite the SEA mix’s tremendous first week.
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The Luckbox Podcast is an esports-dedicated show, including Dota 2 and CSGO. Brought to you by Sujoy Roy and Redeye, Episode 20 focuses on the final weekend of DreamLeague Season 11.