· Valve monopolized all methods of in-game monetization, ensuring only TI could reap the benefits of massive community support.
· Seven months into a pandemic & $160million community dollars later, TI is still indefinitely postponed, along with the DPC.
· If not for the initiative of numerous teams working in partnership with TO’s, we wouldn’t have DotA to watch. The competitive scene has survived throughout 2020 in spite of Valve, not thanks to them.
A former pro player and current caster for Dota 2’s esports scene Kyle Freedman has warned that the current prize pools for The International are threatening the existence of lower leagues. He frequently speaks out for the community and the game, most recently he had talked about broadcast rights and exclusivity.
Kyle ‘melonzz’ Freedman posted a long and heavily detailed article on Medium explaining how much the prize pool has increased in the last few years, this year’s being the biggest in TI history. He goes into the history of TI and how its prize pools have slowly gone up year on year as the esport grew in popularity. Dota’s has declined 20% since TI 9 in popularity.
“Over the years, more and more money has been funnelled to the TI prize pool. More and more importance is put on TI, and less and less to the rest of the year.”
This has been especially problematic in a year where a global pandemic has postponed indefinitely this year’s TI as well as the DPC. Revenue from this year’s Battle Pass has been enormous, and while it’s led to TI10 having a record-breaking prize pool, there’s been little else provided for the rest of Dota 2’s esports scene. In Kyle’s own words, “only TI could reap the benefits of massive community support”.
This is not exactly the first time that the TI prize pool has been called a “problem”, as just last year an analyst voiced his own concerns about the Dota 2 esports scene. Evidently, given melonzz’s exposé, not a lot has changed since then and it’s now taken an even darker turn thanks to the pandemic.
Cap the TI prizepool at 25 million. First place gets 10.
Kyle says “It’s enough to keep players motivated, I’ve asked.”
According to him Valve should-Open the system. End the DPC. Let anyone throw an event anytime. The market can work it out.
TI Qualifying Points to be earned based on the amount of regional representation/global rankings/total prizepool/whatever that a tournament possesses. Keep the rest in a war chest. Use it to match the $$ of any event worthy to count for the year’s journey to TI.
“I’m not asking for handouts” he says, adding “The community has sponsored TI’s ever growing prize pool since 2014. There are numerous notable veterans within this space that would happily accept stewardship of Dota’s future moving forwards. Let those who have demonstrated their love for Dota over the past decade have the reigns.”