The International is the biggest Dota 2 event in the world, and TI 2023 brings an exciting new format to an already epic competition. This year, all qualifying teams and players will have a special chance to compete for their share of a massive prize pool of over $19 million.
The biggest Dota 2 esports tournament is just around the corner, as teams and players from all around the world are competing for a chance to earn themselves a life-changing sum of money. TI 2023 marks the twelfth edition of the legendary event, and its arrival marks a set of format changes, broken records and exciting storylines. Here’s everything you need to know about it (but were too afraid to ask).
What is The International 12?
The International, or TI for short, is the most important Dota 2 esports event in the world, marking the end of each Dota Pro Circuit (DPC) season in the form of a massive invitational event, with prize pools soaring into eight-digit sums. Taking place between October 12 and 29, with the qualifiers running between August 17 and 31, the teams and players will battle it out for their share of a prize pool hovering around $19 million. Valve’s recently decided to change the Battle Pass system, creating a different sort of bundle to promote its mostly crowdfunded mega-rewards for the event.
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The stakes and the pressures are so high here that regular season performances rarely served as a good predictor of TI results in the past, and no team was able to defend its title until 2019, when OG did the impossible. After a pandemic-enforced absence, next year’s competition was won by Tundra Esports, a team that entered the playoffs as the least-likely team to win. Year by year, the cauldron of The International tears down legends and builds up new ones in their place.
This year, a new tournament format will grace the competitors for TI 2023. Developers-organizers Valve, in a bid to making the event more easy to follow in its fullest, adjusted the schedule to make things easier to follow, plus a bit of rebranding.
This time, every match is scheduled in Friday-to-Sunday chunks, and the event is split apart into two separate phases for the sake of newcomers: The Road To The International, and the main event itself, The International – the latter is essentially the playoffs stage of the full event.
Here’s what it looks like in detail:
The Road To The International – format and schedule
Running between October 12 and 15, the group stage of the tournament will feature 20 teams this time, just like last year.
However, instead of the previous format, where two groups of ten teams played out a massive round robin bonanza for the sake of seeding, now five groups of four will play out the same bracket, with the bottom team of each group eliminated. This will be followed by a playoff stage that will take place between October 20 and 22.
Here, best-of-three matches will determine which eight teams will make it to the final showdown in the arena. On Friday, the teams will battle it out for the four upper bracket slots in the main event, with Saturday and Sunday featuring the elimination matches that will whittle down the roster to the final eight.
Last, but certainly not least, the main event of The International itself, between October 27 and 29, three destiny-shaping days of action in the well-known double elimination best-of-three format all Dota 2 fans know and love, with a best-of-five grand final determining the fate of the Aegis of Champions.
The full list of teams and players playing in The International 12 in 2023
Here is the full list of the teams that have qualified for TI 2023, grouped based on their qualification path:
Top performers in the Dota Pro Circuit:
Team Liquid – miCKe, Nisha, zai, Boxi, Insania – #1 in DPC rankings
Team Spirit – Yatoro*, Larl, Collapse*, Mira*, Miposhka*
TSM – Timado, Bryle, Kasane, Ari, Whitemon
BetBoom Team – Nightfall, gpk~, Pure~, Save~, TORONTOTOKYO*
(Asterisks * mark previous TI winners.)
Regional qualifier winners:
TBD – North American qualifier winner
TBD – South American qualifier winner
TBD – South American qualifier runner-up
TBD – Western European qualifier winner
TBD – Western European qualifier runner-up
TBD – Eastern European qualifier winner
TBD – Chinese qualifier winner
TBD – Southeast Asian qualifier winner
Don’t sleep on the teams that barely squeak into the event: Cinderella runs happen all the time at The International.
TI 2023 qualifiers – format, teams and schedule
This year, there won’t be any last chance qualifier spots: instead, the South American and Western European regional qualifiers will seed two teams into the main event instead of just one.
In each of the regional qualifiers, teams are seeded into a double elimination bracket based on their DPC points total and their final placement in the divisional DPC competitions, the “regular season” of the circuit.
Bitsler’s Dota 2 tournament hub is the best place to keep track of the qualifiers – but to make things easier for you, here are all the participating teams:
The International 2023 – China qualifier (Aug 17-21)
The International 2023 - North America qualifier (Aug 17-21)
Sand King Gómez
The International 2023 – Eastern Europe qualifier (Aug 22-26)
The International 2023 – South America qualifier (Aug 22-26)
The International 2023 – Southeast Asia qualifier (Aug 27-31)
Made in Philippines
The International 2023 – Western Europe qualifier (Aug 27-31)
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