As many expected, Valve announced the second Dota Pro Circuit Roster Lock just a few weeks after the new year started.
What caught many off guard, however, is that that the second Pro Circuit Roster Lock will also serve as its last until the end of the The International 2018; teams planning to make roster changes after the scheduled dates will have to deal with some hefty penalties.
What is the Pro Circuit Roster Lock?
— Wykrhm Reddy (@wykrhm) January 9, 2018
The Pro Circuit Roster Lock pretty much remains the same roster lock that has already been in place in Dota 2 for years. The only difference this time around is that violating the rules comes with some pretty drastic consequences.
The first phase began earlier today will run run through January 22, 2018 (17:00:00 PST). During the first phase, managers are free to re-register or replace previous teams and players. Players are also free to see and accept invites, as well as remove themselves from their previous teams. Any player that doesn’t receive an invite to their previous team at the end of Phase One will be officially removed from their team’s official Dota 2 roster.
The second phase of the Pro Circuit Roster Lock begins just as phase one ends and will end on February 05, 2018 (17:00:00 PST). In phase two, teams with complete rosters can no longer drop players, although managers are free register new teams and invite any available players to fill the remaining spots on their rosters. Players also remain free to receive and accept any invitations to play for teams.
Once phase two ends, all unaccepted invites will be cancelled and the rosters subsequently locked until the end of The International 2018, which is expected to take place some time on August 2018.
Click here for more information about the Dota Pro Circuit Roster Lock.
Is The Competitive Scene More Stable Now?
— Evil Geniuses (@EvilGeniuses) December 20, 2017
In some ways, yes. Though Valve have yet to require teams to sign their players to long-term contracts, the fact that there are far more tournaments these days means that there’s more money to go around. Team chemistry has also become much more important as a result. Indirectly, this means organisations will have to sign players for longer periods than before to give them time to mesh. Although there’s still no assurance for Dota 2 players and even entire teams to have a home for the entire season, especially if they produce little to no results.
Even successful Dota 2 teams are not safe as well. Case in point, Evil Geniuses, who arguably remain the best Dota 2 team in North America, still saw the need to make changes; they dropped TI5 winner and offlaner Saahil ‘UNiVeRsE‘ Arora from their roster, swapped the roles of their remaining players and brought in Rasmus ‘MISERY‘ Filipsen to serve as the team’s captain.
Knowing full well the consequences of changing their roster outside of the Pro Circuit Roster Lock, Evil Geniuses still pushed through. And they likely won’t be the last Dota 2 team to try and do the same.
Which Dota 2 players, teams or organisations do you expect to headline the second and last Pro Circuit Roster Lock of the season? Be sure to let us know your thoughts in the comments down below.