It’s been a busy few weeks for the Dota community. Action packed qualifiers, a hectic Nanyang championship, the release of 6.88b and a long-awaited Legion Commander quest chain and Prestige item.
It’s almost ironic that news and events can move too fast for players of a game that has 60+ minute matches, not that we’d have it any other way, so we’ve broken down all you need to know from the past 2 months in the Dota world. Enjoy, and keep defending those ancients!
Qualifiers were skewed this year thanks to the roster changes of Evil Geniuses and Team Secret forcing each team away from automatic invites and into Open and Regional Qualifiers. Could they get cheesed in a best of one? Well, no! Turns out pros are pros for a reason.
EG were merciless, position 4 Zai slotting in as if he was never away and old man Fear delightfully back in position 1. Team Secret had a few squeaky-bum moments on an almost cathartic stampede through the remaining EU games, seemingly reminding them that, hey, we’re pretty good at this Dota lark.
The rest of EU and NA lined up as expected. Digital Chaos edging out Complexity Gaming in a Best of Five NA final, both teams giving “Virtus-Throw” a run for their money, whilst Alliance did Alliance things, defeating Escape Gaming in EU.
Fnatic and TNC Gaming qualified from a weak SEA region whilst Wings Gaming took first place in China. The runner up spot for China embarrassingly went to Vici Gaming Reborn, ahead of their parent team Vici Gaming, who disbanded soon after.
Did the Nanyang Championship reveal anything?
The best part about the Nanyang championship, as is often the case with tournaments they attend, was Wings Gaming. Is there a more entertaining team in the Dota scene? Even drafts are exciting as you literally have no idea what they will pick. They won a game, a professional, championship game, without buying a courier as the match started. They’re the Chinese epitome of ‘no shits given’, what I’d give to be a fly-on-the-wall in their strategy planning.
Otherwise Nanyang was an enjoyable, if issue-laden, championship, with standout plays mixed with surprisingly one-sided stomps. If you get a chance, the entire Wings v Newbee Grand Final is worth a watch, as is some of LGD.Maybes playmaking on Invoker. The guy is a beast and has TI:6 firmly in his sites.
What it means for TI:6
While fans still ‘umm’ and ‘ahhh’ about LGD and Navi receiving direct invites, no one can deny that the 14 team lineup, plus 2 wildcards, is the strongest mix of talent yet.
Multiple major winners OG and runners up Team Liquid have set a high bar, but any team can defeat another on a given day – MVP’s massacre of Team Liquid in the Manilla Major’s upper bracket is testament to that.
The hectic nature of roster shuffles and playstyles has also opened up some mouth watering head-to-head matches, two in particular really stand out. If Wings can avoid their usual LAN-choke we could have the dream of Wings versus Alliance. Where would you even start banning?! Across the pond, DC’s Misery and W33ha have a score to settle with Team Secret after their acrimonious departure which, sad to say as a big Team Secret fan, they have a very good chance of winning.
Dota’s professional scene has never been in a better place skillwise, so sit back, relax and look forward to an epic tournament. Will 9k superstars Miracle- and Arteezy meet? Will EE resist the urge to be EE-like? Is it W33po time? (Clue, it’s always W33po time).
Dota 2 Pubs Meta
I hope you enjoyed the Strength hero resurgence, as we’re all suffering the consequences now: Timbersaw and Tinker, everywhere you look. Hey I’ll just get this stacked ca*whirling blade to the face*. Oh cool a last h*laser to the eye*. I miss bans in All pick.
VG.R gave their best effort to ruin Pubs for a weekend, crushing EHome in 12 minutes with an Io + Drow strat which, while sickening to watch, required a huge amount of coordination and map control, two things Pubs are renowned for.
Speaking of ruined Pubs, the Legion Commander quest line is here. If you’re queued up and see golden Battlepass owners, expect a mad dash to lock in Legion, with the justification of “Gaben took my money, now I take your time”. Having an entire questline linked to a single character is such a bad idea for the Pub scene that it barely needs mentioning, one thing Pubs don’t need more of is AFK junglers, but it gives us more to do in our Battlepass. Not that I can complain, Gaben has my money and I’ve finished all the other questlines, so by-golly am I going to spam Legion until my dueling eyes bleed.
Otherwise Pubs are much the same; Fly-inspired Phoenixes being picked without complementary heroes, AFK Nature’s Prophets who time their ultimates perfectly to steal last hits, and Rikis who can’t decide if they’re support, carry or a glorified creep.
Tip Of The Week
Watch ODPixel’s cast of Secret’s early Qualifier games. His attempt to find logic in the items or map-movements of the 2-4k teams (aka scrubs like you and I) is both a joy to behold and also a great lesson in “you still suck at DOTA!”
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