Team Secret’s coach, Lee "Heen" Seung Gon, put down his thoughts on the potential issues with the 2021 DPC format after the conclusion of the ONE Esports Singapore Major. In a Twitlonger post, Heen not only talked about the flaws that exist in the DPC format and the TI qualification scenario but also listed the solutions that could help eliminate these flaws. According to Heen, the race to TI is very hard, the TI prize pool concentration is not healthy. Additionally, he believes that the teams’ relegation system is not great and that the points distribution system is unacceptable. The South Korean Dota 2 coach wants the system to accommodate more teams in the Regional Leagues so as to make “everyone happy.” In addition to the many problems and solutions he highlighted, Heen also wants Valve to alter the DPC points distribution system, especially at the Majors.
Secret Heen talks about his criticism of the 2021 DPC format
An almost similar version of the current DPC system was first revealed in February 2020 but unfortunately, because of the onset of the ongoing pandemic, the system could not be put into place. It was only in January 2021 when Valve brought back a refurbished version of the 2020 DPC system and kickstarted 2021 with the Regional Leagues.
Team Secret’s coach, Heen, has always been a critic of this system - whether it be the 2020 or the 2021 version. According to him, the only thing that the current system accomplishes is that each region will be almost guaranteed to have a representative at TI. This is because there is very little difference between the number of DPC points awarded at the Regional Leagues and the Majors.
Here is what else he believes are the problems with the current system.
- DPC points are hard to acquire (top five in a region’s Upper Division and top eight at a Major receive DPC points only). Combining this with the increase in the number of good teams and the decrease in the number of TI qualification tournaments, teams are under a lot of pressure.
- Additionally, as a lot of money is concentrated on TI this year, the road to the world championship has become “less consistent.” The Majors account for “literally 1-2% of the TI prize pool” which Heen believes is not healthy. Also, the players who get kicked by a team have no way out except to replace a player in another “capable team.”
- Points distribution system, especially at the Major, is not rewarding for many teams as only the top eight get their share of prize money and points. The rest go home empty-handed. Though the prize pool is generally believed to be evenly spaced out to support the tier 2-3 scene, the prize pool as a whole has been decreased by Valve. This is made worse by the fact that no Major-level non-Valve tournaments have taken place or announced as of now.
- “The current system of bottom 2 Upper Division teams having to give up their slots to the top 2 Lower Division teams is still stupid. We're in the business of competition. Earn your spot like everyone else.”
- Lower Bracket R1 should stop being BO1. As evident from the Singapore Major (where the Lower Bracket R1 was BO3), it takes just one more day to complete the round.
Suggesting a possible solution, Heen stated that he wants every region to have more slots if Valve is going to continue having the current format. “No logistics issues will emerge in hosting a tournament with so many teams since the Battle Pass reportedly gave Valve “$160+ million US dollars,” he added.
Vikin.gg’s coach, Daniel "ImmortalFaith" Moza, added another issue to Heen’s list as he mentioned the high number of games that some teams (especially the wild card ones) need to play.
HellRaisers’ offlaner, Roman "Resolut1on" Fomynok, replied to the Korean’s tweet, stating that he agreed to most of his arguments.
With TI10 scheduled in August 2021, Heen feels there is still time to take some of his ideas into consideration and implement them although he knows it is unlikely.