Patching Up The DPC

  • Consistent performance throughout the year is important
  • Cross-regional LAN events are the pinnacle of Dota 2 competition and should be respected and valued more heavily — however regional events are also important.

Patches and Qualifiers

Different regions had their open qualifiers at different times, most notably SEA had their Season 2 Open Qualifiers for Lower Division after the roster lock. Patches also came out soon after a major so teams didn’t have enough practice time before qualifiers. This has got to be fixed — specific regions shouldn’t be at disadvantage to others in flexibility to sign up.

DPC League Format

The leagues are a bit too long, by around 1–1.5 weeks. The league could be compressed simply by not having Monday’s off. That’s the only change here I’d make — the plan was always for 3 majors a season so maybe after next season it’ll be clearer if more changes are required.

The Major Format

Perhaps the most discussed topic recently is the format of the majors. The proposal I made after the Singapore Major is one I’m still happy with.

  • regional runner-ups (2nd place) would be awarded 1 match bye
  • the wildcards (3rd and 4th place teams) would have no byes

Extra DPC Point Bonus

In addition to the increased points, I would retroactively reward regional league teams if that region goes on to perform very well at the major. This is to reward regions that have a high level of competition which limits attendance for some teams. This is also similar to UEFA’s national coefficient for determining how many teams per league make it to the Champion’s League (although in a more rapid manner), something updated every year.

TI Regional Slots

This is mostly just a suggestion for the people who complain that “weak” and “undeserving” teams are able to go to TI because all the good teams in that region qualify directly. Like most of the suggestions in this article, it’s mutually exclusive with all the other ideas — I personally don’t think this is required however it solves what some consider a ‘problem’.

  • NA: EG + Quincy
  • SEA: T1 + TNC
  • EU: Secret + Alliance
  • CIS: Virtus Pro + Team Spirit
  • China: LGD + IG

Team Ownership

This is an issue which was most discussed in NA, although issues did also occur in other regions. The person who created the team in the Major Registration interface was the ‘team owner’ and could remove people as they pleased. In some cases this was abusive — leading to players getting kicked. In other cases, it prevented abusive situations like where 3 players wanted to kick 2 players and keep the slot for themselves. Overall, this issue is complex and difficult to enforce by Valve alone. As a result, remaining flexible is key — and when creating a team the creator should be able to choose between different templates of team management (and changing between these templates requires unanimous agreement):

  • Democracy: a decision to kick someone or add someone needs > 50% of the team to be ratified. Can have an option to be core-only or include non-core members (i.e. the manager)
  • Supermajority: to kick someone you need approval from everyone except the kick target. To add someone, everyone needs to agree. Can have an option as for ‘Democracy’
  • Unkickable: a player cannot be kicked, but may voluntarily leave a team if they wish. This is ideal for teams forming where teammates don’t necessarily trust each other to not kick them.

The International

In the past 6 TIs there’ve been 5 TI finalists who came in from regional qualifiers. In the past 3 TIs alone there’ve been 2 winners who came from regional qualifiers. This seems to suggest that the DPC is doing an okay job at deciding who ‘deserves’ to be at TI, but also that there’s a high risk of excluding very skilled TI-worthy teams. This can be addressed by having more teams at The International than we currently do (perhaps 20, up from 18), slightly shifting the balance between just-before-TI peak performance and year-long consistency.

Money

This is the simplest problem to solve. The International should not represent ~80%+ of the year’s prize pool for just 18 teams over 2 weeks. All prize pools for regional leagues should be increased by 50%+, and all majors should be doubled in prize pool. The money for this can be taken out of the TI war chest.

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Ben Steenhuisen

Ben Steenhuisen

Dota 2 statsman and occasional caster | runs @datdota