The path to the Rogers Arena, Vancouver has already begun, with the Regional Qualifiers well underway around the globe in regions like CIS and China. But as we wait for the final results of these clashes, let’s take a look at what we know so far of the SEA Regional Qualifiers for The International 8.
TNC Predator, Fnatic and BOOM ID are the fortunate few who were directly invited to the SEA regional qualifiers with the rest of the teams making it through the open qualifiers.
With such a stacked SEA qualifier we might see some very interesting results and while it is unlikely that we might not see TNC Predator or Fnatic failing to qualify for The International 8, it is possible. With just 2 qualifier spots available, the pressure to perform well will be higher than ever. For us viewers however; sit down, strap in, and enjoy the ride.
Phase 1: Group stage
One group played in a round-robin format.
All matches are played in Bo1.
Tiebreakers are resolved using head-to-head record first, then a Bo1 round robin, then finally time rating on the round robin.
1st, 2nd, 3rd & 4th place teams advance to Phase 2.
Phase 2: Playoffs
1st - 4th place teams play out a double elimination GSL style bracket.
All matches are played in Bo3.
Winner of the Upper Bracket qualifies for The International 2018.
Winner of the Lower Bracket qualifies for The International 2018.
Roster: EternaLEnVy, Abed, UNiVeRsE, DJ, pieliedie
EternaLEnVy and company have been on the crux of becoming a solid tier 1 team for so long. But they’ve not been able to deliver in clutch situations in the DPC circuit. However, that is the DPC we are talking about. The playground of powerhouses like Virtus.Pro, PSG.LGD, and Team Liquid. This should be a cakewalk for Fnatic in comparison especially considering the talent as well as experience they possess.
Roster: Armel, Raven, Sam_H, Tims, Kuku
TNC Predator looked like the strongest SEA team in the world (yes better than Mineski) in the China Supermajor. There were some doubts raised when 1437 was removed from the team, and Kuku moved to the support position. But they’ve put all those doubts to rest with a few phenomenal performances.
Armel and Raven are the players around which the team is built. Both of them are incredibly stable players who seem to get farm, no matter who they’re up against. And once they get ahead, they tend to stay ahead. It is going to take something special to shut them down, and shutting either core down is the key to success for their opponents.
Roster: Fbz, Dreamocel, SaintDeLucaz, Jhocam, Khezcute
While this team might have flown under the radar in the past few months, they should not be underestimated. They took first place in this year's Indonesia Games Championship 2018, a tournament consisting of mostly Tier 1 Indonesian teams such as RRQ, XCN Gaming, PG.Barracx and The Prime NND, plus numerous 3rd - 4th place finishes in multiple SEA Qualifiers.
Looking through the past SEA qualifiers, you will also see that BOOM ID manages to almost always perform well when competing against every other team not named TNC Predator/Fnatic, this is their biggest weakness. They have to find a way to overcome this if they want a place in The International 8.
Roster: 458, inyourdream, KyXy, Xepher, 1437
Earning themselves a qualifier spot through topping the first SEA Open qualifier is unfortunately not enough to make them the favorites for the regional qualifiers. While winning against their open qualifier compatriots is impressive, to say the least, we also have to consider that there are stronger teams in the SEA regional qualifiers than just their familiar sparring partners.
Sadly enough, TNC Tigers record in past tournaments is less than stellar. If TNC Tigers can overcome their weakness to Tier 1 teams’ playstyles, they most certainly have the potential to go very far, but whether or not that will happen remains to be seen. They’re one of the dark horses for this qualifier but given their blend of experience and skill, they're not to be taken lightly either.
Roster: Black^, Pingvincek, HesteJoe-Rotten, NoiA, Jobeezy
It is safe to say that the Entity Gaming hasn’t had the best of luck when it comes to qualifiers for DPC events. Though the core of the roster has been together a while, they have struggled in the open qualifiers and haven’t made it to any of the regional qualifiers.
However, with the addition of Black^ to the roster they’ve improved by leaps and bounds and they look like they have quite a decent shot at making it to The International 8. They’re also one of the dark horses for this qualifier that might have the element of surprise on their side.
Roster: FelixCiaoBa, AlaCrity, Ohaiyo, YamateH, Net
With Ohaiyo's unsuccesful stint at LFY, not many were expecting him to be in contention for a spot at The International, but the SEA veteran is well within touching distance of a TI8 spot thanks to some stellar play from his teammates as well sheer mechanical skill. Although Battle Arena Elites beat a plethora of teams including Clutch Gamers as well as Sterling Global Dragons to get into the main qualifiers, their performances have been very shaky and they made way too many mistakes, mistakes that would have been ruthlessly punished by the teams in the SEA main qualifier.
They’ll need to improve quite a lot to be in contention for a spot in The International 8, or even become proper dark horses.
Roster: DogBrain, Fearless, MyPro, LionaX, Boombell
The Thailand team has quite a few major attendees in their roster. DogBrain and LionaX are well known in the SEA Dota community for their high-risk, high-reward playstyle, they play a very aggressive game which doesn't end up working for them against most teams. But if nothing, their games are always enjoyable for the casual viewer.
Roster: Tino-, Kim Elizabeth, S-GOD, Shanks, Flysolo
Not much is known about this team except that it is captained by ex-Clutch Gamers leader Flysolo. This squad had quite a nice run in the SEA Open Qualifiers, they beat out teams like DeToNator, HappyFeet, etc.
But it will be a difficult road for the Filipino squad.
Games will be broadcasted on the BTS Hub, starting from 22nd June. You can find the schedule for the games HERE