In an attempt to organically grow the competitive ecosystem, Valve will be hand-picking multiple third-party organizers to host Dota 2 Majors next year.
The company has until now been the sole undertaker of conducting two major events every year, leading to the annual prestigious championship known as The International. With a prize pool of $3 million each, these first-party tournaments have gained prominence for not only the audience but professional teams as well. It only forced third-party and smaller organizers to downsize their own events since it became too difficult to match against the Majors.
In a new post on its official blog, Valve announced significant changes to the competitive circuit for 2018. There will now be two tiers of tournaments: Majors and Minors. At the start of next year, the developer will be awarding certain tournaments the license to host either one of them based on fixed criteria.
Majors must have a minimum prize pool of $500,000 and will receive an additional $500,000 boost from Valve. Minors on the other hand must have a minimum prize pool of $150,000 and will similarly receive an additional $150,000 sponsor.
“In order to ensure a baseline level of competitiveness, and to support teams from different regions around the world, both Majors and Minors will be required to have at least one qualifier from each of the six primary regions (NA, SA, SEA, CN, EU, and CIS),” noted Valve. “In addition, Majors and Minors must have a LAN finals component to their tournament in order to accommodate teams from the different regions.”
The schedules will be the only aspect controlled by Valve to ensure that there are no clashes between two tournaments throughout the year.
Another change to the competitive circuit for next year will be the need of teams to earn “Qualifying Points” in the Majors and Minors to determine invites for The International. To be clear, the new points system will be the only way to attend the next championship. This will give every team an equal opportunity to grind points throughout the year with more tournaments than before to guarantee attendance at the end of the year.
A leaderboard will be made available for everyone to follow the progress made by every team through all of the Dota 2 Majors and Minors.