In recent years, the concept of esports has grown substantially. Plenty of competitive games have been getting their share of massive tournaments sponsorships, international teams, and worldwide broadcasting through services like Twitch. The bar is getting set pretty high, but Valve will be taking it even further with their popular MOBA (multiplayer online battle arena) title Dota 2.
On May 9th, the official Dota 2 website released The Compendium for players to purchase for $10. The Compendium is a virtual, interactive book used to track tournament stats and can reward players with cosmetic items for use in-game. Valve started the International 2014 prize pool at $1,600,000, with $2.50 from each Compendium purchase being added on top. As of the time of writing, the pool is sitting at $4,315,246.
In addition to the prize pool, Valve also put together a list of Kickstarter-esque stretch goals for features that can be added to Dota 2 for all players to enjoy. These include new features and game modes. Now, there are only 4 goals left leading up to $6,000,000. These include a new music pack, a new 1v1 mode, new environment effects, and a base customization item for Compendium owners.
It’s impressive to see how such a devoted community can make something so spectacular happen, especially for a free-to-play game. As for when the tournament will take place, The International 2014 will be held on July 18 – 21 at the Key Arena in Seattle. Tickets to the event have already been sold out, but the tournament should be available to watch broadcasted.