The Dota 2 International 2018, the biggest annual spectacle in Valve’s premiere MOBA, just saw another team take up one of its direct invite slots. This time, it’s by none other than the reigning TI champions, Team Liquid.
Team Liquid now join Virtus.Pro as the first two Dota 2 teams to mathematically guarantee their spot at The International 2018.
— Wykrhm Reddy (@wykrhm) May 4, 2018
Where others have fallen victim to the TI curse, Team Liquid, the winners of The International 2017, seem unaffected. Kuro ‘KuroKy‘ Salehi Takhasomi and his squad remained hungry even after winning the most prestigious tournament in Dota 2 last August. Case in point, their multiple LAN wins and strong finishes under Dota 2’s newly minted competitive system, the Dota Pro Circuit. And though Team Liquid have yet to win a Major this season, they have performed well enough to rack up a hefty sum of points.
Heading into EPICENTER XL, Team Liquid had already racked up 4,734 Qualifying Points for the season. This meant that an invite to The International 2018 was all but guaranteed already. All Team Liquid needed to do was finish strong in the remaining LAN tournaments, and that they certainly did. Their win against OG in the upper brackets of the EPICENTER XL playoffs earlier today secured them a Top 3 spot at the said tournament.
— Team Liquid (@TeamLiquid) April 28, 2018
With their season total now up to at least 5,409 Qualifying Points, Team Liquid can now rest easy knowing that they’re already sure to get a chance to defend their title come August. But then again, this is KuroKy we’re talking about. Don’t expect Team Liquid to start slacking off soon. If anything, expect them to finish strong in the weeks ahead, which might very include a three-peat at EPICENTER XL.
The Race for The Dota 2 International 2018
With the 2017-18 season, Valve decided to change Dota 2’s competitive system. Gone were the Valve-run Majors of the past. In its place was the Dota Pro Circuit. The system was built to help make the game more profitable and sustainable, with more high-paying tournaments all year round. It also allowed for more transparency. At least, as far as direct invites to TI goes. Instead of guessing, everyone now knew who would receive a direct invite to Dota 2’s biggest annual tournament. This is because only the eight Dota 2 teams with the most Qualifying Points from the Pro Circuit tournaments at the end of the season would be invited to TI8. The rest will have to go through the qualifiers.
Having said that, with only a few LAN tournaments remaining in the 2017-18 Dota Pro Circuit, we’re now starting to see which teams are most likely to receive a direct invite to The International 2018. Expect Mineski (3,150 Qualifying Points) and PSG.LGD (1,821 Qualifying Points) to make the most out of their opportunity here at EPICENTER XL.
Which teams do you think will take up the remaining six direct invites slots for the Dota 2 International 2018? Be sure to let us know your thoughts in the comments down below.