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Three Dota 2 Highlights Throughout 2021


With the end of the challenging year that was 2021, one can still look back and notice multiple incredible developments that happened throughout the year in the world of Dota 2. Several major developments happened both in the game as well as the esports scene — some of which will change the game forever. This time, we’ll take a look back at 2021 and consider the best developments throughout the year. 

The release of DOTA: Dragon’s Blood

While not something that directly pertains to the Dota 2 esports scene, one must consider the incredible work put into the animated series DOTA: Dragon’s Blood — released on Netflix early in the year. While the reception wasn’t overwhelmingly positive, it was viewed as a well animated show with a lot of potential — something Valve will hopefully capitalize on as time goes on. 

In addition to that, it was interesting to see how the show works as an interesting multimedia expansion for Valve. With the release of the show also came a bunch of new content — skins and other updates — that convey elements from the show. Additionally, there is a very real possibility that the show has helped bring interest to Dota 2 from an entirely new section of potential players. 

The International 10 breaks multiple big records

2021 was one of the greatest years for gaming and esports, end of story. Not only were there some absolutely incredible tournaments throughout several games, but there was an interest and enthusiasm for these competitions larger than has ever been seen before. What we saw at Dota 2’s 2021 iteration of the International was no exception — a perfect example. 

For one thing, the prize pool has once again gone up into the stratosphere. Even after almost a decade of Valve’s experiment allowing fans to help crowdfund the prize pool for arguably the premier event in esports — The International 10 ended up doing it again. With an eye-watering $40 million prize pool, it was the first time any esports competition had reached that figure.

That wasn’t the only major development, though. Valve was able to break new grounds in terms of viewership as well. In the finals between Team Spirit and PSG.LGD, the broadcast peaked at more than 2.7 million viewers — a viewership record easily surpassing the 37% increase from The International 9’s 1.9 million peak during Team Liquid’s duel with OG. Even after all these years, the interest in Dota 2 is still not only surviving, but thriving.

The International Remains

Something that should be celebrated more is the fact that we had a version of The International this year at all. That is definitely a huge point of joy that should be celebrated more. Even with all the difficulties surrounding the pandemic, companies like Valve have done their best to make sure competition still happens in an effective and safe way. Valve succeeded in doing this, and once again brought an amazing show this year. Dota 2 fans no doubt look forward to many to come. 

Images via Valve.

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