ESL One Germany 2020: The Modified Swiss Format Explained

Rakshak Kathuria
Published On: 
  • ESL One Germany 2020 is set to begin today with the likes of Team Secret, Alliance, OG, Team Nigma.
  • Swiss-style format is being used for this tournament, instead of the usual round robin or GSL format.
  • This tournament can be Team Secret's 9th consecutive win and also captain KuroKy and Topson make a return for Team Nigma and OG respectively.

We have yet another European/CIS premier tournament beginning today in the form of ESL One Germany 2020. 16 teams will battle out in the tournament for 1 long month to win the trophy and the lion’s share of the $400,000 prize pool. Some of the strongest teams in the entire Dota 2 scene like Team Secret, OG, Team Nigma and Alliance are a part of this tournament. So this month long tournament is going to keep the Dota 2 fraternity engrossed with some spectacular and high-quality action.One thing that is different about this tournament is the use of Swiss-system instead of the usual round-robin or GSL formats usually employed in these tournaments.

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Your Guide to the Swiss-System Format at ESL One Germany 2020

The Swiss system seeks to provide a clear winner with a large number of competitors and a relatively small number of rounds of competition, without a single bad result eliminating a team from the tournament.

In the Swiss-system format, the first round is either drawn at random or seeded according to some prior order and after that, the number of wins and losses of a team determine their bracket. It is an old but novel method for the Dota 2 audience, it makes it relatively harder for them to follow their favourite teams since the schedule and opponents are quite erratic and ever changing. 

The 16 teams that are playing in ESL One Germany 2020 have been placed in a Swiss Group Table.

For the first round, the teams are likely seeded according to ESL’s official rankings. So, as per ESL, Team Secret is the number 1 seed and will face Tempo Esports who is the lowest seed in the tournament ( the 16th seed). In the first round of this swiss-system league, number 1 seed will play against number 16, number 2 against number 15 and so on.

After the initial round, the second round will witness 8 teams that won their series be placed in a single group while the other 8 teams that lost their series be placed in a different group. Then, likely by seeding again, these teams play in their respective groups to determine the groups of the third round, and so on

If a team achieves 3 wins they move on to the playoffs. If a team loses 3 games, they are eliminated from the tournament. Hence by the end of 5 rounds of the Swiss groups, 8 teams would have qualified for the playoffs, whilst 8 others will be eliminated from the tournament.

The swiss-system format is a little complicated for the general audience, but as mentioned earlier, allows for an equal and accurate group stage. This format was used by Valve in 2017 at the Kiev Major.

ESL One Germany begins with two matches, scheduled for today followed by three series each for the next two days. 5men will face off against Ninjas In Pyjamas in the tournament opener followed by Team Secret against Tempo Esports. 

This tournament also marks the return of captain KuroKy for Team Nigma after an army injury barred him from playing competitive Dota 2 for almost 4 months. Topson will also make a return for OG, after he missed the recently concluded OGA Dota Pit S3, after he was blessed with a baby girl. 

Also to mention is Team Secret’s sheer dominance in the region and the unstoppable winning spree they are on. Will they be able to make it 9 tournament wins in a row?

RELATED:  Team Secret Secure Their 8th Consecutive Tournament Win

ESL One Germany 2020 certainly boasts of a lot of exciting stuff and some high intense gaming action. 

Rakshak is an undergrad, an inquisitive person who likes to acquire information and knowledge of varied sectors in esports. However, his current focus is specifically on Dota 2.