Dota 2’s The International Starts With $18 Million In Prizes

Happy Dota Day! It’s that day of the year when Pip slips into a malaria dream of excel spreadsheets and weird anecdotes about last hitting, the day that celebrates that holy day whence once the First Minion was born and itself begot the eternal cycle of minions which continue evermore into the infinity. I guess! I don’t know, I play League of Legends.

Today is the beginning of the main event for Valve’s Dota 2’s [official site] tournament The International, which comes with an impressive $18 million prize pool – and it’s not settled yet.

To put that in context, last year’s total prize pool was just over $10 million – this is made up of a $1.6 million base prize pool funded by Valve and over $9 million of which was funded by contributions from the playerbase via sales from a digital booklet called the Compendium which lets you take on challenges and earn rewards.

This year, Valve are offering up the same base prize. The rest has come from Compendium contributions – that’s a mind boggling $16,405,518 from fans, making this the biggest prize pool for this sort of thing that I’m aware of. Comparatively, League of Legends’ prize pool of just over $2 million for last year’s World Championship sounds austere next to Valve’s pure Caligulan excess.

If you’re not in the Seattle area for some hot Hero on Hero spectating, this year’s International is being broadcast online, on TV, and at hundreds of pubs and bars worldwide. You can check out local listings right here. In the meantime, have a look at our International 2015 cheat sheet for everything you need to know about what the hell is going on.

Our roving reporter Pip is on the ground at The International and will be reporting back.


  1. Lars Westergren says:

    I’m happy LGD won the first match against Empire by being patient and controlled and taking it late. I hate facing that CIS style where they start ganking you from 5 minutes and stomp you on the face while you are down, until you don’t dare to leave the base.

    • Lars Westergren says:

      The music they played on the Dota 2 TV beta before the matches started were great by the way. Kind of “anxiousness at the dawn of the day of the big battle” feel.

      Still, at over $50 million Valve should afford to hire some good composers.

    • Lars Westergren says:

      And now LGD are running that hateful Tusk+Lina combo. Snowball, Punch, Light strike array. Bah. Go Empire.

      • Lars Westergren says:

        Game 3, Empire picked Tusk+Lina, and they are getting killed over and over. This is so satisfying.

    • jrodman says:

      OMG spoilers!!

      • Lars Westergren says:

        Oh, sorry. I didn’t think about that.

        Spoiler: I really suck at Dota.

  2. BooleanBob says:

    Wow. If the rest of the games are half as good as this opening set, we’re in for a good week.

  3. PikaBot says:

    Spoiler warning:

    Na’Vi got kicked out but I can’t even be mad, the game that eliminated them was amazing.

  4. Chorltonwheelie says:

    18 million?
    Surprised the arch bed wetters, so quick to claim daft military shooters are poison, are so keen to visit the kind of excess on us that has turned football into such a corrupt shitfest.

  5. FullMetalMonkey says:

    This isn’t a dig at RPS but I’m surprised hardly any gaming sites covered the Group Stages. There’s been some amazing games so far. The wildcard qualifiers were really entertaining too.