SEA fans are in for a treat.
ESL launches regional Dota 2 championship in SEA
As one of the big organizers for Dota 2 events, ESL has revealed a brand-new championship for the top teams from Southeast Asia.
The ESL SEA championship
The news came from one of ESL Asia's official Twitter account.
By the looks of it, the number of participating teams will be limited to 8 while the prize pool stands at $20,000. The big opportunity lies with the last bit, where champions of the SEA tournament will advance directly to the closed qualifiers of ESL One Birmingham. The latter is set to take place at the end of May in Birmingham and will have the status of a Dota Pro Circuit Minor, offering $300,000 in prize money and 660 DPC points. So far, the only team to receive a direct invite to the event are the two-time TI champions OG.
Back to the SEA championship – four teams will be directly invited while the other four will be determined by qualifiers starting on February 29. Out of the four direct invitees, three have already been made clear – Geek Fam, Adroit, Reality Rift. The final one will most likely be revealed before the start of the qualifiers. Head of Products at ESL Asia Michael Kiefer commented:
“There is a lack of opportunities for up and coming teams and we wanted to develop a product to tackle this issue.“With the ESL SEA Championship granting a direct path to the closed qualifiers of ESL One Birmingham 2020, it provides additional opportunities and financial support for teams as well as a more interesting storyline for fans to follow.”
Once determined, the eight teams will be split into two groups – A and B. Group A will be played first between March 9-10, while group B will be set for March 25-26. The top two teams from each group will advance further into the playoffs of the championship which are set for April 4-5. All of the games will be in the Bo3 format, with the exception of the grand finals being Bo5. Streams of the tournament will be available in English on the official ESL Asia Facebook, Twitch and YouTube channels.
Valve is reportedly planning to restructure the competitive Dota 2 ecosystem for the next season by removing Minors as a whole, reducing the number of Majors and introducing regional leagues. The upcoming SEA Championship might be a good example of what we might expect in the future.