Dota 2 has long been known as being one of the biggest games in esports. Whilst titles like League of Legends and Counter Strike Global Offensive have their merits, the Dota 2 battle arena game continues to impress thanks to its endlessly enjoyable gameplay.

Nowhere is this better witnessed than at one of the many Dota 2 tournaments that keep the world’s best pro gamers busy.

It seems that there’s a new Dota 2 competitive gaming contest appearing every week, but few contests are able to generate as much excitement as the International.

Ever since the International burst on the scene in 2011, it quickly became known as being the pinnacle of Dota 2 gaming. The first International competition was held in the German city of Cologne, but it spent four years in Seattle before moving onto Vancouver and Shanghai.

One of the biggest reasons as to why the International gets plenty of attention is the fact that it regularly has the largest prize pool in esports. Thanks to crowd-funded nature of the prize, the overall winnings exceeded $25 million at last year’s event.

The International takes place every year, and 2019’s International will be held at the Mercedes-Benz Arena in Shanghai from August 20 to 25.

Whilst many millions of gaming fans are expected to watching the on-screen action via Twitch.tv, there’s also expected to be some coverage on traditional sports broadcasters such as ESPN.

In addition to this, there are even dedicated esports betting resources like esports.net that regularly provide news stories about top Dota 2 tournaments such as the International.

In order to qualify for the International, the world’s best Dota 2 pro gaming teams will have to pick up enough points on the gruelling Dota 2 Pro Circuit. This features five Majors and five Minors that determine who gets invited to the main event.

From the opening round of Sweden’s DreamHack in October 2018 to last month’s MDL Major in France, it’s been fascinating to see how the action has unfolded.

Obviously, there is still plenty to play for and we won’t get to know the final standings until the last Major takes place at the Epicenter gaming tournament in Russia at the end of June 2019.

At the moment Team Secret are racing ahead of the competition and they are sat on top of the leaderboard with 14250 points.

However, we can still expect Virtus.pro to put in a strong challenge, whilst both Evil Geniuses and Vici Gaming will be working hard in the run up to the International.

It may have been disappointing to see big esports teams like Natus Vincere, Complexity and Royal Never Give Up failing to deliver the goods on this year’s Pro Circuit. But when the International kicks off in August, it’s sure to be another thrilling competition.

Last year’s tournament featured OG shocking gaming fans by beating PSG.LGD in the finals. This was a huge upset as OG had come through in the open qualifiers and were widely thought to be a walkover for the hotly-tipped PSG.LGD team.

Of course, the International is about so much more than just the on-screen action. The gaming festival also featured no shortage of cosplay competitions and there were even demonstration games where pro players got the chance to take on a team of AI-bots.

And with even bigger things expected to be featured in this year’s tournament, it’s clear that the International is set to maintain its reputation as the world’s biggest esports spectacle.

***In cooperation with esports.net***

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