Dota 2 breaks the $30 million prize pool mark amid generous Battle Pass buy-ups and community engagement. More needs to be done for the regular season.
The International 9 Breaks $30m Prize Pool Mark
Dota 2 remains the competitive video gaming title, or esports game, to provide the single largest prize pool in the history of such events. Introducing the game back in 2011, Valve, the developers, have had tremendous success with it offering $1 million for the first event and growing the prize pool exponentially.
Through crowd-funding and vowing a fair bit of their own money, Valve has been growing the money that goes to gamers for the past ten years. As of July 21, 2019, the prize pool for the upcoming The International 9, the equivalent of Dota 2’s World Cup, broke the $30 millionth mark, making headlines far and wide.
This was a significant improvement upon the 2018 results when the tournament managed to amass $25 million in ready funds. Dota 2 is even ahead of Epic Games’ Fortnite World Cup which promises $30 million to winners.
Yet where Dota 2 has years of experience developing a meaningful and well-established esports ecosystem, Fortnite has a series of fits and starts which have led to no clear competitive format so far, making fans think of the game on the lines of a marketing stunt rather than a genuinely competitive game.
With the Fortnite cup around the corner on July 26 – July 28, people will be watching nevertheless. Meanwhile, Dota 2 has proven that a model where the community takes care of esports is the best way. The revenue-sharing scheme has paid off big time, allowing the community to see some previously unprecedented amounts awarded to gamers.
Valve, for its part, has just come up with a great idea, but they have taken the back seat on investing too much. The company only contributed $1.6 million of its own money to the event.
The Battle Pass: What a Success
For true fans, buying a Battle Pass is a matter of personal honor. Available for prices ranging between $9.99 and $44.99, the battle pass allows you to explore new consumables, visual and gameplay features, new levels, and scenarios.
Plus, the Battle Pass guarantees you gain entry to watch The International directly through the game, circumnavigating any observers and streamers. The Battle pass used to be just a ticket offering access to the event, but these days it is a much-anticipated addition to the game, offering a range of great features.
While the TI is getting more attention, fans have asked Valve to do more to revitalize the Dota Pro Circuit which runs in the year ahead of each International. The big prize pool for The International shows great commitment on the part of fans, but to truly succeed as a game, Dota 2 will indeed need to do more about the competitive season throughout the year.