Prizepools in Dota 2


Valve is back with another spine-chiller. The first ever Major is set to be in Frankfurt from November 16th to 21st. Besides the fact that this event represents the first of its kind, it comes with a thrilling prize pool of $3 million. But how does the Fall Major sit among the previous tournaments in terms of prize pool? Below you can find a summary of how the money was circulating in the past years in the world of Dota 2.


In 2011 the largest tournaments in Dota 2 by prize money did not even reach the $ 30.000 mark, with the highest of them all being ESWC 2011, with a prize pool of $ 22.000. It is understandable why nobody believed Valve when they announced the first International with its $ 1.6 million prize pool. It came as a shocker to everyone, players thought that it was some kind of scam, a way to create hype around the tournament and that the winners would not be rewarded with what was promised to them ultimately.



In 2011 The International was the first ever eSports event that had a prize pool larger than $ 1 million. The closest tournaments of the time in terms of prize money were in the region of $500,000 (CPL World Tour Finals 2005 – $ 510.000; CGS 2007 and 2008 ~ $ 450.000). As we all know, Ukraine Natus Vincere came out on top of the event held in Cologne, and Valve kept its word. The teams got paid and Valve started a tradition with the tournament.



The second edition of The International was the last tournament organized by Valve that had no crowd funding. It closed a season of major improvements in terms of growth in audience as well as game development. Featuring the same reward as the year before, TI2 ended up contributing almost 80% of 2012s total prize money in Dota 2.



The year 2013 saw the first Dota 2 tournament with a prize pool larger than $ 100,000, as Perfect World organized the Dota 2 Super League in China. The event featured a reward of CN¥ 1.050.000 (roughly $ 117.000) spread between 10 participants.



For the next year's The International, Valve introduced the crowd funding system with the help of the compendiums. This meant that the base pool of $ 1.6 million was then increased with every purchase of a compendium. This is how TI3 managed to reach the prize money of $ 2.3 million dollars, smashing the record held by the previous two. The year also saw a doubling in total prize money across 89 tournaments.


2014 was the year in which multiple tournaments emerged. The growth was substantial in terms of prize money, as the community witnessed many events with prizes above $ 200.000. The International, however, still ranked as number one, in terms of audience and pay-off both. This was the first year that an eSports competition awarded more than $ 10 million to its participants. No championship was anywhere close to this money at the time. The tournament ended a season of great success, as Dota 2, once again, continued its progress, as both the contest organizers and the tournaments largely benefited from a generous community.



The year 2015 started with the Dota 2 Asian Championship. Although the base prize pool of the tournament was only $ 250.000, with the help of the community, this number was raised to more than $ 3 million, making DAC 2015 the second largest eSports event of the time. “The International of the East” was the first tournament that could give a glimpse to what the Majors will look like. Backed by Valve, the event went on and created a serious hype among the Dota enthusiasts. It also became the only contest to award $ 1 million dollar to the first placed team in Dota 2, besides The International.


During spring Valve announced the structure of the forthcoming season. A significant change came in the picture of three Majors, tournaments organized with the help of Valve, which together with the yearly edition of The International, would mean that a season consists of four major events, instead of just one. No additional information was given at the time.



Up until the International 2015, the money distributed among tournaments already surpassed the previous season. This meant that TI5 was looking better than ever to become the largest eSports event. Starting from the standard $ 1.6 million base, the prize pool went up to more than $ 18 million, just by crowd funding. This gave proof to what Dota 2 and Valve have reached in recent years. With the conclusion of the tournament, everyone was eager to hear from the first Major, which would be organized during fall.



The announcement finally arrived, giving some insight on how Valve imagined these championships to look like. Along the details regarding invitations and tickets, a huge cheer welcomed the news concerning the prize pool of the contest. The upcoming Major will break into the top five of highest paying eSports events of all time. With its prize pool of $ 3 million, it becomes the largest non-crowd funded tournament, overtaking all the previous editions of The International as well as the League of Legends World Championships in terms of organizer-provided prize money.


The Frankfurt Major is set to become the largest event in Dota 2, besides the editions of The International. The community is ready to witness another historic event, as prize money grows year-by-year, event-by-event.


Note: Article based on data available at:


(Author credits: Romania Ferenc “Sarkane” Fodor)

AuthorRye Date 9 October 2015, 17:20 Views1463 Comments0
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