There’s a reason to rejoice for Dota 2 fans in China as the Chongqing Major Qualifiers are set to take place.
The second Major of the 2018-19 Dota Pro Circuit, the Chongqing Major will see 16 teams competing for a $1 million prize pool and 15,000 Qualifying Points. The first 15 spots will be taken by teams from the six main competitive regions who will have to qualify via the Chongqing Major Qualifiers. Each region will get at least two slots each. It is still unknown which three regions will receive an extra slot. Meanwhile, the sixteenth and final slot will be filled by the winners of the Bucharest Minor.
The Chongqing Major Qualifiers Format
Here’s where it gets really very interesting! The direct invitees to the qualifiers for all six regions have been decided already by StarLadder. It contains who is who of Dota 2, with all of the big name pro-competitive teams one would expect:
- Europe: Team Secret, Ninjas in Pyjamas, The Alliance, OG, Team Liquid
- CIS: Virtus.pro, Gambit Esports, Natus Vincere, Team Spirit
- North America: Evil Geniuses, Forward Gaming, J.Storm, compLexity Gaming
- South America: paiN Gaming, paiN X, Infamous, Playmakers Esports
- SEA: Fnatic, TNC Predator, Tigers, Lotac
- China: PSG.LGD, Vici Gaming, Team Aster, H-Cup Winner
To put the format in simple layman’s term the teams listed above have been invited by the organizer hence they are already qualified. The reaming slots open are for the open qualifiers. So three slots of Europe because they already have 5 teams invited to the regional qualifiers. To further clarify things every region has eight teams in regional qualifiers. For the third major some regions have three, some five teams invited. So the remaining slots for open qualifiers depend on number of invited teams per region.
The OG Effect
The Chongqing Major is already shaping up to be an audio-visual feast for Dota 2 fans from all over the world. But, perhaps the most alluring part of the entire event is the interesting lineup of participants. Though they have not qualified as of yet, the highlight of it all has to be the return of the TI8 champions.
Normally, the return of a participant team wouldn’t garner so much hype, but it’s the events preceding Chongqing majors that have made things interesting. Anyone who avidly follows the scene knows the dream like run OG has had at The International 2018 but then in a surprising move the aforementioned team decided against taking part in the first major. Whatever their reason was, it was clear that fans felt OG’s absence and the community is definitely happier seeing their favourite flower competing once again.
Thankfully, they accepted the invite to play at the Chongqing Major qualifiers and will now be competing.
It’ll be interesting to see in what kind of form they’ll be at the event, and more importantly, who they’re going to bring in to replace Anathan ‘ana‘ Pham, who’s out on an extended break from OG.
Who Should We Watch Out For?
Although the lineup of teams taking part is quite impressive, we have narrowed it down to a couple who we believe are set to make a lot of noise at the Chongqing Major Qualifiers.
Team Spirit – CIS
Relative new comers to the scene, Team Spirit hail from Russian federation. What makes this new team worth keeping an eye on is the fact that only 3 weeks ago they clinched first place in the autumn cup and also bagged the $4,000 prize.
Currently led by Belarusian Artiom ‘Fng‘ Barshack, who once dominated the CIS scene as a former member of Virtus.Pro years ago, it’ll be interesting to see what Fng’s squad brings to the table once they start playing at the Chongqing Major Qualifiers.
Infamous — South America
Founded in 2015, Infamous’ haven’t exactly had the most stable roster since. But, even so, they hold the distinction as the first ever South American team to go to TI. They also did quite well at DreamLeague Season 10, coming in 4th place, and walked away with $25,000, which suggests that, amidst the roster turmoil, this team has a lot of potential.
Hungry and motivated, you’d best keep an eye out for the Peruvians at the Chongqing Major Qualifiers.
Tigers – South East Asia
Led by veteran captain and player Theeban ‘1437‘ Siva, Tigers have managed to stick together despite rumors of a disband and have now emerged stronger than ever.
Winners of DreamLeague Season 10, it was unfortunate that fatigue and jet lag got the better of Tigers as they were unable to keep up with the competition at the recently-concluded Kuala Lumpur Major. But, that’s okay. With that experience in hand, Tigers know all too well just how important it is to qualify for Majors the first chance they get, and for their foray at the Chongqing Major Qualifiers, you’d best expect this team to have learned how to play better together and act as a more cohesive unit.
J.storm – North America
J.Storm might play in North America, but their players are from all over the world. This multicultural team has players hailing from USA, Canada, Bosnia Herzegovina and South Korea.
With a win rate of 52% and currently occupying 35th place in world ranking, J.Storm is another strong contender to keep your eyes on.
Team OG – Europe
Of course, who could forget this team? Formerly known as Monkey Business, the 4-time Major winners and TI8 champions have come a long way in just a few short years.
To say that OG have carved themselves a reputation as one of the very best pro Dota 2 teams in the history of the game is only fitting. And though the team has seen its very foundations shaken with the departure of founding member, Tal ‘Fly‘ Aizik, the team has stood strong and rallied behind Johan ‘N0tail‘ Sundstein, who has taken on the role as the team’s captain and made the switch from carry to support.
The combined talent and experience of OG alone are enough to vault them above most of their competition. But, that’s not all they’ve got. They are the defending TI champions. Even if ana is not going to be playing with them at the Chongqing Major Qualifiers (and for the foreseeable future for that matter), they remain one of the heavy favourites and THE team to beat unless otherwise proven.
Team Aster — China
After performing exceptionally at the Kuala Lumpur Major qualifiers, Team Aster decided to make a couple of changes. Surprisingly enough, they decided to bench Deng ‘Dstones‘ Lei in favour of Gao ‘loveyouloveme‘ Yuan and even brought in Fu ‘Q‘ Bin to coach the team.
No one exactly knows what prompted this sudden change. However, what we do know is that this team’s lineup boasts experienced players who, if they gel together, could give other teams a good run for their money.
Are You Ready for the Chongqing Major Qualifiers?
The thriller in China as some are calling it is bound to be a high stakes and one of the most thrilling Dota 2 tournaments of the year. StarLadder has already announced that every single main qualifier match will be covered in English, Russian and Chinese languages.
So, what are you waiting for? Place your bets, and make your predictions, because we’re going to see a lot of action over the next week!
Which teams do you think will dominate at the Chongqing Major Qualifiers? Be sure to let us know your thoughts in the comments down below.