All You Need to Know About EPICENTER XL Before It Starts
This season is incredibly fruitful in epic competitions coming our way. The Dota 2 pro circuit schedule is so intense it makes teams decline invitations to certain championships to focus on other more important ones. Epicenter is the fourth major out of seven tournaments this year. The qualifiers are over, and all the participants have been announced.
EPICENTER XL Overview
This tournament is the third in the Epicenter series. It will be held from April 27 to May 6 in Moscow. The competition is organized by EEE (Epic Esports Events), one of the biggest event organizers in Eastern Europe and the CIS. The main event will take place at the VTB Ice Palace on May 4‒6. Traditionally, the championship comprises of three parts.
Qualifiers and invitees
Five teams received direct invites to the tournament, as the organizers thought that their amount of DPC points is enough for these teams to pass directly to the group stage. This, however, caused controversy in the gaming community. Some gamers believed that the invitation for Na’Vi was not deserved, as currently the team doesn’t have enough Dota 2 Pro Circuit points to be in the top eight teams. The teams that received direct invites are: Virtus.Pro, Newbee, Evil Geniuses, Team Liquid and Na’Vi.
OG, Team Empire, CompLexity Gaming, PaiN Gaming PSG.LGD and Mineski fought their way to the group stage via regional qualifiers. Here is the full list of qualifiers:
- North America (February 12 – February 16) – CompLexity Gaming
- South America (February 12 – February 16) – PaiN Gaming
- Europe (February 12 – February 17) – OG
- CIS (February 26 – March 8) – Team Empire
- China (March 21 – March 25) – LGD Gaming
- Southeast Asia (February 10 – February 12) – Mineski
- Madness Qualifiers (March 24 – March 25) – FlyToMoon
The highlight of the qualifiers was the Russian team FlyToMoon. This team was so determined to get to the main event that they won nine matches to become the champions of the Madness Qualifier stage, where a total of 289 teams fought it out. That’s what we call determination!
This stage of the competition begins on April 27 and will last through May 3. The teams will be divided into two groups, six crews in each. Team Liquid, Mineski, PSG.LGD, CompLexity Gaming, FlyToMoon and Team Empire were sorted in Group A. Virtus.Pro, Team Secret, Newbee, OG, Na’Vi and PaiN Gaming will compete in Group B. The teams will compete in a round-robin system, which means that each contestant meets all others at least once.
The two top teams from each group advance directly to the Upper Bracket playoffs, 3rd and 4th places head to the Lower Bracket, and the last two teams are eliminated.
This stage will take place on May 4‒6 in Moscow. Here all the matches will be played in a double-elimination system, meaning that to be eliminated from the bracket a team has to lose two matches. Moreover, the first two rounds in the Lower Bracket will be played by a best of one system, leaving no room for error. All subsequent games will be best of three, except for the grand finale, which is traditionally played as best of five.
Prize Pool and DPC Points
The prize pool for this year’s Epicenter XL is $1,000,000 and 1,500 Dota 2 Pro Circuit points. The distribution of the DPC points is as follows: 750 points for first place, 450 for second, 225 for third and 75 for forth. Teams placed 5th to 16th receive no professional points. However, they do receive a share of the prize money, and usually quite a significant one. For example, fifth place can receive from $30,000 to $67,500, depending on the distribution system, and 16th place gets $10,000.
Epic Esports Events added their creative touch to the process of choosing broadcasting talents. They decided that one competition, in Dota 2 itself, isn’t enough, so the organizers hosted an open contest for analysts and observers from all over the world. Anyone with no prior experience in commenting on LAN events could take part, and the reaction was so massive that the organizers chose six winners instead of one.
So, here’s the list of the rising talents we will enjoy during this year’s Epicenter XL:
- GranDGranT (Grant Harris)
- BreakyCPK (Nick Caras)
- Bkop (Benjamin Kopilow)
- KillerPigeon (Darren Elmy)
- Nomad (Jared Bajina)
- MoFarah (Jack Williams)
The first three analysts are from the US, and the last three are from the United Kingdom.