In case you’re new in esports, Dota 2 TI 2019 (The International 2019) is the biggest competitive gaming tournament in the world. It’s the most-viewed esports event on Earth, boasting the biggest prize pool in the history of competitive gaming. It’s also set to begin this week, so we wanted to take some time and explain its significance, introduce the teams and give all the necessary information you need in order to enjoy the biggest Dota 2 tournament to date.

What is Dota 2?

Let’s begin with the basics. Dota 2 is a game that was developed by Valve in 2013. It’s based on a popular Warcraft III mod called Defence of the Ancient that spawned an entire genre of games now called MOBAs (Multiplayer Online Battle Arenas). Dota 2 is played in matches between two teams of five players, with each team occupying and defending their own separate base on the map. 

Each of the ten players takes control of a single hero character, all of which has unique abilities and differing styles of play. In a match, players collect experience points and items in order to make their character stronger and defeat the opposing team’s heroes in PvP combat. The first team to destroy the main building in the enemy base, called “Ancient”, wins… Simple right? You’re one step closer to being able to enjoy the biggest Dota tournament in the world.

Who’s playing in Dota 2 TI 2019?

The International can be considered as a World Cup of esports. Only the best players and teams from across the globe are able to participate in it, claiming their tickets to the main event from many different competitions, qualification tournaments and so on.

2019 International team list consists of eighteen teams from across the globe. Infamous, Mineski, Royal Never Give Up, Natus Vincere, Chaos Esports Club, and Forward Gaming are the winners of the six regional qualifiers. These teams will join the top 12 teams from this year’s Dota Pro Circuit, such as TNC Predator, Keen Gaming, including Dota 2 Major 2019 tournament winners Team Secret, Vici Gaming, and, as well as former champions like Alliance, Evil Geniuses, and Team Liquid.

Prize pool

Dota 2 TI 2019 prize pool is another interesting topic worth talking about. The International prize pool is crowdfunded from the fans of the game making in-game purchases. The organizers of the tournament only give 1,6 million dollars while the rest of the money is contributed by fans. Currently, the prize pool is nearing 33 million dollar mark, but it’s not over yet. Players will be able to contribute to the prize pool until the day of the Grand Finals. That means that the winning team will take home more than 15 million dollars (3 million dollars per player). 

Dota 2 TI 2019 format and groups

The annual competition will begin with a group stage which will pitch teams against each other in a best-of-two series in order to determine the seeding for the main bracket. However, it’s not all about the seeding. Bottom team from each group will be eliminated and won’t be able to participate in the biggest Dota 2 tournament anymore.

Dota 2 TI 2019 group stage will run from August 15th to August 18th. After all top 16 teams will be known, according to the seedings teams will be placed in a double-elimination bracket. The first round will be a brutal best-of-one and from there teams will play best-of-three series up until the grand final on August 25th which will be best-of-five.

Where to watch it?

Dota 2 TI 2019 will definitely be a blast and you can watch it live wherever you are in the world. You will be able to find the full live coverage of the event on Twitch. It’s also worth underlining the word ‘International’ and that means that the competition will be broadcast in a variety of languages. It’s also worth adding that TI has a special coverage channel for those who are new to the game and need a bit more information about it. You can find the full list of Twitch channels here.

In addition to Twitch, the biggest Dota 2 tournament will also be available on YouTube, Steam’s own, DotaTV (an in-game match spectate), and various TV broadcasters across the globe.

Something to do while you wait

And to end our article and give you a bit of sense why The International always creates such a fuss in the game’s media, here’s a Valve-made documentary TrueSight. This hour-long video features behind the scenes footage from the Dota 2 The International 2018 finals. If you haven’t seen it we kindly recommend it: