Valves' yearly Dota 2 championships finally kicked off this week with a prize pool worth $2.8 million, a record when it comes to a single event in eSports history. Now in its third year, the international has already 400,000 concurrent live viewers within hours of going live.
The world's elite Dota 2 teams have made their way onto Valve's headquarters in Seattle to compete for a prize money which is claimed to be over $2.8 million. Teams from around the world have landed in Seattle, including 2011 international champions, Na'vi, from Ukraine, 2012 international champions, Invictus Gaming, from China and this year's favourites, Alliance, from Sweden.
In addition to the main event, there will be a 1v1 Solo championship and an All-Star match with players voted by fans. Star players include the likes of Danil "Dendi" Ishutin from Na’Vi, Luo "Ferrari" Feichi from Invictus Gaming, Jonathan "Loda" Berg from Alliance, and Chai "Mushi" Yee Fung from Orange Esports. A detailed list of teams and competitors can be found on the International site.
“Despite the importance of the tournament itself, I think players will remember the All Stars and 1v1 matches with great fondness,” Dota 2 analyst Bruno Carlucci told GameSpot. “One can only imagine how much some of these legends dreamt of playing with each other on a LAN environment, or even, for some of the youngest competitors, face their idols in a 1v1 and prove themselves to the world as the best individually skilled player.”
The prize pool increases by $2.50 with every purchase of $10 Interactive Compendium, and is highest amount ever for a single-event in competitive gaming/eSports history.
“TI3 is already the tournament with the biggest prize pool in eSports,” Carlucci said. “With such an amazing start in stream numbers, I'm betting it will soon become the biggest tournament in stream viewer numbers as well.”
The International Main event is scheduled to begin on August 7 at Benaroya Hall in Seattle, Washington. The event will be streamed on the in-game spectator client Dota TV, and on Twitch TV.