We have moved on a year from the insane reception of Dota 2 at TI1 and by now the community has grown to a huge size – so Cologne, Germany is no longer our home. This year was the first time which The International moved to Seattle, America and namely, the Benaroya Hall. The Dota 2 blog updated on May 10th 2012, announcing the first 2 teams that were confirmed for the event – and the hype train began.
In the next few weeks, I will continue on a journey through the History of the International, where it all began, the prize pools, the winning teams and everything surrounding each event as we lead up to this year’s TI8. The story of TI1 can be found here.
The International 2012
On May 10th 2012 the Dota 2 blog had the following update:
The update definitely ignited the hype for the 2nd iteration of the prestigious event as we entered a near 4-month journey through to Seatlle. This year would feature 16 teams once again but only 14 were sent direct invites to the event while another 2 would be found via regional specific tournaments. One from thee “West” and another from the “East”. This would be the first time that Qualifying was involved for The International and opened the door for the future years. The 16 teams who would be confirmed for the event would still be battling for that $1,000,000 first place prize and everyone knew right off the bat that things would be much different from the previous year.
This time around the teams were much more well-known, with the community having followed them for a year, loving them and cheering for each player who they held in the highest regard. The teams themselves all seemed to hail the Chinese as the most prolific in the Dota 2 scene at the time and with Team DK, Invictus Gaming, LGD Gaming, TongFu and EHOME all hailing from China, everyone could feel the tension building.
When the dust settled and the games were over, after each absolutely breathtakingly beautiful play had been made and The International 2012’s Grand Final had come to an end, it was in fact a Chinse team who claimed victory. iG would be able to hold of the defending champions in the series and become the victors of TI2, lifting the now tangible Aegis of Champioons high above their heads. This was the first time that the Aegis of Champions was shown – having only been conceptualized and created after the events of TI1, which meant that in the ceremony preceding iG’s victory, Na’Vi would hand over the trophy to its new owners. Valve released a post on the creation of the magnificent spoils of victory and it can be found in its entirety here.
Over the years of The International we’ve definitely seen some brilliance, be it a moment of solo performance or an insane team play that puts a team ahead. The International 2012 was no difference but the biggest play is one that is entitled “The Play” and has never been forgotten by those who witnessed it in real time. Replays and slow-motion viewings 6 years later still incite every reason why Dota 2 still excites me. Na’Vi would come back from losing game 1 in 16 minutes to drop iG into the lower bracket – but it was Game 2 that produced the fireworks. For anyone who does not remember this moment, here’s a chance to almost re-live it.
The International 2012 Placements and Rewards
- First Place– Invictus Gaming – $1,000,000
- Second Place– Natus Vincere – $250,000
- Third Place– LGD Gaming – $150,000
- Fourth Place– Team DK – $80,000
- Fifth/Sixth Place– EHOME/Team Zenith – $35,000
- Seventh/Eight Place– TongFu/Orange Esports – $25,000
Dota 2’s Continued Growth
During the build-up to TI2 we saw a lot of different things come out from Valve, including the confirmation of Dota 2 being completely free to play with an in-game store for cosmetic items. With this also came the announcement that Dota 2 would be added to the Steam Workshop – meaning that community made content could be created for the game and, if chosen, even featured in the game. Updates to the game itself also continued in this period with heroes being released over the time along with UI changes too – everything was shaping up going forward for Dota 2 and the game did not stop growing.