ESL One Hamburg has seen a lot of excitement, but the most exciting thing announced so far for us is the advent of a new era for DOTA’s aspiring pro players. With heavy discussions centering around how TI has made it impossible for tournament organizers to support the tier two scene, ESL has come in to save the day yet again with Dotabuff as their partner in crime.
The ESL Academy combines itself with Reach to solve the two major problems of high level players and pro players alike: Immortal Matchmaking and a healthy amateur scene.
Reach Platform - Fixing Matchmaking
Dotabuff Plus subscribers are going to have the ability to find a time-slot every day of the week where the highest level players - the equivalent of immortal matchmaking - are going to have their own role queue to play. By fixing a time slot that people can work around, it helps make it so that you never have to wait longer than necessary to have your queue pop and a game on your hands.
Images courtesy of DOTABUFF and ESL
From the results of these games, each month there is going to be $20,000 given away to the top players of the month. From this, a minimum of half the revenue will be reserved for non-professional players, making it so that you shouldn’t just see Arteezy pocketing all the big boy money in North America.
Not just that, but by playing in the Reach league, you build up your own Reach profile which is meant to serve as your own CV into the major competitive circuit. We expect that the profile will be similar to the Dotabuff profiles that people have now, with statistical mapping of various necessary portions - as well as having the obvious achievements of winrates etc. We’re excited to see what other statistical representations DOTABUFF can bring.
End of Season Prizes
The top forty up-and-coming players at the end of each season will have the opportunity to be drafted into teams in order to compete for the ESL Academy slot that ESL One events will be having. The implication here is that a direct invitation will be reserved for each team that wins this particular tournament to bootcamp and participate in an ESL One. With there having been four ESL One events this year, it isn’t disclosed exactly how many seasons we can expect per year, but it’s possible that there might be a season of Reach and Academy for each ESL One.
The entire Academy/Reach crossover project fills the major gaps that the DOTA 2 scene has been asking Valve to address for a long time. It’s unsurprising that this will come heading into 2020, where ESL have also announced very ambitious goals for their CS:GO circuit to integrate amateur scenes in a similar fashion.
The ladders and league are initially going to be launching in North America and Europe only, but future plans may see a spread to other regions as well. This is going to be an exciting time for DOTA 2 moving forwards.