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Another fantastic season of Dota has come to an end and coming off of a Dota high is never easy. The Post-TI period is often abuzz with rumours, tournament announcements all of which combine to make the new season all the more exciting. So today we focus on the new DPC season and the plans that Valve has announced for it.
Last year the DPC season had 22 events in total with 9 being Majors and the remaining Minors. This year, however, Minors and Majors will run in pairs. 5 such sets of Minors and Majors have been planned for now. Unlike last year, where teams often had to face gruelling schedules and qualifier dates were decided by organizers, Valve themselves have set the dates for this season onwards.
Both Minors and Majors will have qualifiers and there will be no direct invites for either event. The qualifiers for the Major will occur first, followed by the qualifiers for the Minor. Only teams who fail to qualify for the Major will be allowed to compete in the Minor qualifiers.
All Minors will feature at least 8 teams with a minimum of one qualifier per region. All teams that play in a Minor will stand to win DPC points depending upon their placing in the event. The winner of a Minor event will have a slot in the Major that it is paired with. To make the process smoother, teams that qualify for a Minor will be required to initiate the visa process for the Major so that whichever team wins, has no troubles going to the event.
All Majors will feature 16 teams with at least with a minimum of 2 qualifiers per region. If a team does qualify to a Major, it cannot play in the qualifier of the Minor that it is paired with. All teams that play in a Major will stand to win DPC points, depending upon their placing in the event.
Following are the dates for each qualifier and main event. When Valve made this announcement in June of 2018, only the first Major of the season had been locked down and applications for all other events were being accepted. More information about each event is yet to be announced.
Sep 17-Sep 21: Major Qualifier
Sep 23-Sep 26: Minor Qualifiers
Oct 29-Nov 4: Minor Main Event
Nov 8-Nov 19: Major Main Event
Nov 26-Nov 30: Major Qualifiers
Dec 1-Dec 4: Minor Qualifiers
Jan 7-Jan 13: Minor Main Event
Jan 17-Jan 27: Major Main Event
Feb 1-Feb 5: Major Qualifier
Feb 7-Feb 10: Minor Qualifier
Mar 4-Mar 10: Minor Main Event
Mar 14-Mar 24: Major Main Event
Mar 28-Apr 1: Major Qualifier
Apr 3-Apr 6: Minor Qualifiers
Apr 22-Apr 28: Minor Main Event
May 2-May 12: Major Main Event
May 15-May 19: Major Qualifier
May 21-May 24: Minor Qualifiers
June 10-June 16: Minor Main Event
June 20-June 30: Major Main Event
Another big change to the DPC season comes in the form of how roster locking works. This season will no longer have any hard roster locks and changing rosters during the DPC will no longer disqualify a team from the DPC. From now on, DPC points will go to teams rather than individual players and the removal of each player will cost the team 20% of their DPC points. Adding a new player will however not net them any additional points as was the case last season.
Additionally, if a team plays a DPC event without their full 5 man roster, they will only get 40% of the points for that event. The teams must also use at least 4 out their 5 registered players in qualifier games. Once TI invites and qualifiers start, rosters will be locked till the conclusion of the main event. To be eligible for an invite to the qualifiers of the first Minor and Major, teams must lock in their rosters by September 15th, 2018, 10:00 AM PDT.
What this means? Roster changes late into the season will obviously cost teams more especially if they have picked up DPC points from multiple tournaments. However, teams who don’t necessarily get off to a hot start will be free to tinker around with their rosters to find a winning formula.
A major change that we will see being implemented for next TI is the fact that people with stakes in multiple teams or organizations that are fielding multiple rosters will be only allowed to send one of their rosters to TI9. This rule will be implemented regardless of DPC points and while teams can continue to play in DPC events running up to TI9, ownership conflicts will need to be resolved by then.
What this means? No more VGJ.Storm and VGJ.Thunder at TI9. In fact even having VG along either of these two teams will most likely not happen at TI9. Does Fly still have a stake in OG? That probably implies that he too will have to find a way to sell it off before attending TI with another team.