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Valve Corporation is organising it's eighth annual edition this year, The International 2018. Over the years, TI has become quite the prestigious event in the Dota 2 scene and this year will take place in Vancouver, Canada at the Rogers Arena. The world’s esports match will start with the Open qualifiers on the 14th June all the way through the main event on the 20th August 2018 with a total prize pool that has reached a whopping $19.5 million so far.
Last year’s prize pool started with an astounding $1.6 million, so how did it increase to a remarkable $24 million at The International 2017? Each year dota 2 fans like to buy skins and items to help them get better in-game, so Valve came up with the idea of the Battle Pass Sales as a way of contributing to the total prize amount. This year’s International 2018 has gathered a jaw-dropping $17.9 million in added contributions to the initial reward of $1.6 million. The overall prize is set to reach higher with a few weeks left to the main event, most likely breaking another record in esports history at The International 2018.
The International 2016 winners were the Chinese pro team, Wings Gaming who took home the title to proudly claim a whopping $9 million cash prize, defeating Chaos in the Grand Final. It was a close win for DG who finished in second place while the previous TI 5 winners, Evil Geniuses came in third place at TI 2016.
The International 2017 saw Team Liquid take the premier title and won the highest dota 2 prize in esports history of an astonishing $10.8 million. TL lost to Invictus Gaming in the Upper Brackets with a score of 1-2 moving down to the Lower Brackets Round 2. Liquid won the matches against Team Secret, Empire, Virtus. Pro, LGD Gaming and LGD. Forever Young. Outplaying the squads all the way through to the finals where Team Liquid defeated the Chinese unit, Newbee with an unbeatable record of 3-0.
Up until 2017, for all dota gamers who watched The International tournament live in the Arena, there was the opportunity to play on stage in the All-Star Match. The competition of two teams, each having a captain and five professional players chosen by The International Compendium. The two leaders selected five random people each from the audience. An experience not to miss for avid gamers in attendance, in fact, one such gamer snuck into the audience to play Dota 2 was pro player Dendi, who caught everyone by surprise.
Over several months, the dota 2 teams have participated in esports tournaments gathering Dota Pro Circuit points. The DPC rankings have shown the top 8 units which are the strongest in the game. The teams that received direct invitations are Virtus. Pro, Team Liquid, PSG.LGD, Team Secret, Mineski, Vici Gaming, Newbee and VGJ.Thunder.
At The International 2018 for a team to qualify for a spot, the tournament will start off with the Open Qualifiers over a thousand dota squads compete against each other for a place in a single elimination bracket. The units that have to qualify are from different regions like America, China, Europe and South East Asia, where the best of the best will be determined to earn their place in the Main qualifiers.
Ten more teams had to go through qualifying matches to acquire their place at The International 2018. The qualifying contestants are OG, Winstrike Team, Team Serenity, Invictus Gaming, Fnatic, TNC, VGJ. Storm, Evil Geniuses, Optic Gaming and Pain Gaming.
The Group Stage will feature the best sixteen teams that will compete against each other in the process eliminating eight teams that move down to the lower brackets. The remaining top eight squads earn their spot for the Main event. Reaching this qualifying stage is a dream come true for all dota gamers. The prestigious TI 8 will feature the top four Dota squads in Semi-finals in a best of three. The creme de la creme of two teams will be determined, going through to the Grand Finals to play in a best of five.
TI 8 winners will win the highest cash prize in the Dota 2 scene this year, while also showing the world who are the masters of Dota. Which professional team will fulfil their dream of taking The International 2018 Championship?