Introductions to Dota2 League system
Valve has confirmed the establishment of a new regional league system that should bring more order and consistency into the professional Dota 2 scene. The League system is also called to provide newly created and tier 2-3 teams with more opportunities for development and advancing to the Major events. How will regional leagues work? How DPC changes will really affect Dota 2 eSports?
Dota 2 Regional Leagues
According to Dota 2 official blog page, the new regional leagues will feature 2 divisions: Upper and Lower division with 8 teams in each. There will be 6 Dota 2 leagues in main regions: China, SEA, Europe, CIS, North America and South America. A total of 96 teams will participate in Regional League competition throughout the world. At the end of each season, two bottom teams from Upper division will be substituted with two best teams from Lower division. Moreover, two teams will advance from the Open Quals replacing two bottom Lower division teams. The teams will compete for a $280,000 prize pool, DPC points and Majors invites during 6 weeks with Bo3 Round Robin format.
All 6 regions will hold a competition 3 days a week. Each game will be played in a best of three format. After the teams have declared the region where they would like to compete, Valve will situate them in Upper and Lower divisions according to their previous results. The empty spots will be awarded to the winners of Open Qualifiers which are scheduled to take place after TI10. However, a team should have at least 3 residents of the selected region take part in the competition. A stand-in could be used only for 4 matches and only if he is from a lower division or not competing in the league. In case a team would like to move to the other division, the team will be forced to climb through Open Quals and Lower division.
The teams will not be able to change rosters during the league season. In-between seasons, each player change will cost 15% of current team points. The season will conclude with a Major. The event will feature 18 teams from 6 regions. There will be a $500,000 prize pool and DPC points split among participants. Spots distribution between the regions:
- Europe: 4 spots
- China: 4 spots
- North America: 3 spots
- Southeast Asia: 3 slots
- CIS: 2 slots
- South America: 2 slots
At the end of the 3rd season, top-12 teams with the most DPC points will qualify for the upcoming The International. Six more TI participants will be discovered through ‘regional final chance qualifiers’. 8 best teams from each region will compete for one final spot at the International. Open Qualifiers will no longer be an option to advance to The International.
How DPC changes will really affect Dota 2 esports
Will the new changes improve the Dota 2 professional stage from a fan perspective? The first and the most important, there will be much more Dota 2 live streams. Each league should hold 5 bo3 matches per week in both Lower and Upper divisions. In general, there will be 60 bo3 matches, or around 180 hours of professional Dota 2 matches live broadcasting a week. Considering that one week has 168 hours, you could watch pro Dota 2 competition almost anytime you feel like it.
If you are interested only in following your favorite team matches, the new format will suit you perfectly fine. The number of matches will increase, and the schedule will remain stable so that you will not have to adjust to the timetable and search for the match starting time every day. However, stay calm not to get oversaturated with Dota 2 performance.
What will be the effect on Dota 2 teams and players? From the teams' perspective everything is not that clearly positive. On one side, the changes will allow tier 2-3 teams to generate income from tournaments' prize pool which was almost impossible for many years. This should bring more equality between teams. On the other side, teams will have much less time for rest, less opportunities for roster changes and taking part in non-DPC events. In any case, with the new DPC season, OG and PSG.LGD fans will have the opportunity to enjoy their favorite teams performance more often than several times a year.
A stable schedule should be a benefit for the teams, which will be able to plan the calendar for the whole year ahead. The organizations will not have to attract the fans to watch teams’ matches at exotic time as the schedule will be formed according to the region's time zones. However, a split into divisions may lead to a serious gap between them. For instance, the gap between football Spanish Primera Division and Segunda or Italian Serie A and Serie B is extremely huge. No doubts, the gap between Dota 2 division will form in the very first season and could reach the difference up to 100k live viewers. Therefore, some tier 2-3 teams may encounter serious financial issues instead of entering the new path of the development as it is promised by Valve.
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