When it comes to e-sports, nothing dominates the news like DOTA 2. The massive online strategy game is going strong as ever, basically defining e-sports. The game is not without its good, bad, and the utterly weird, however. Here’s a roundup of some of the most unusual DOTA 2 news this month for those who keep tabs on the game:
Valve Bans Toxic DOTA 2 Players for 20 Years
Valve recently updated the matchmaking system in DOTA 2. Bundled with the software patch was a new system to ban “bad actors” until 2038. The absurdity of such a long ban was not lost on most players.
The matchmaking update is one of Valve’s latest efforts to keep trolls, cheaters, and similar undesirables out and clean up DOTA 2’s notorious reputation. To be clear, Valve is not banning players that incur minor infractions. The extended ban is reserved for those with “exceptionally low behavior scores,” according to Valve.
The worst players, as Valve defines them, include cheaters and game hackers who use ways and means to gain unfair advantages over the rest of the player base. It now includes those who shoot to the top ranks by buying or selling Steam accounts. Smurf accounts are included too (the term refers to experienced players creating new accounts to pretend to be noobs).
Players who receive “exceptionally low behavior scores” may include those who get reported many times over for bad behavior during gameplay, or those who abandon matched games often. Repeatedly failing to ready-up for matched games won’t get a pass either.
Valve’s rollout of the new update came so soon that it blindsided some long-time players. Immediately after the update went into effect, the DOTA 2 community on Reddit was fired up by complaints about long bans. Some players who complained to Valve did receive feedback on exactly why their accounts were locked.
DOTA 2 Championship Team Loses Game over Misclick
Incorrect or missing clicks are quite common in gaming, especially when the players are just regulars having fun. No one expects a top e-athlete to make the same mistake that the rest of us do, and lose a big tournament. That’s exactly what happened to the Swedish team Alliance in their match against Royal Never Give Up in DOTA 2 annual international tournament.
The player who made this mistake was none other than the team captain of Alliance, Aydin “iNSaNiA” Sarkoh. During the hero roundup, Sarkoh wanted to ban the Gyrocopter so that the rival team wouldn’t be able to use the toon. However, instead of banning it, Sarkoh ended up selecting the Gyrocopter for his team. The action was not undoable because of DOTA 2’s stringent rules.
Once he realized his mistake, Sarkoh was heard saying, “Oh my god. Are you serious? Did this just happen?” according to media reports. The rivals, on the other hand, reportedly muttered “they are goners now” into their microphones.
Royal Never Give Up managed to corner and ambush the Gyrocopter, leaving Alliance with less toon power during the final crucial minutes of the match. Alliance lost the lower-bracket game.
Despite the calamitous mistake, Alliance exited the world tournament in the 13th place. The team earned over half a million U.S. dollars in prize money for this.
Team Liquid Leaves DOTA 2
To the shock of many fans, one of the most successful DOTA 2 tournament teams, Team Liquid, announced their departure from the e-sports arena.
Team Liquid was founded by Victor “Nazgul” Goossens, and included well-known players like Amer “Miracle” Al-Barkawi, Maroun “GH” Merhej, Ivan “MinD_ContRoL” Ivanov, Aliwi “w33” Omar, and Kuro “KuroKy” Salehi Takhasomi, who was also the team captain.
Goossens announced the unexpected roster shakeup on his personal Twitter account. The team was not completely dissolved. A number of top players who made it to international tournaments would be leaving to strike out on their own, according to press releases issued by departing members.
Team Liquid is best known for winning the DOTA 2 international championship in 2017, taking home some $10 million in prize money. The group has since been a major player in the e-sports arena. In 2018, they finished in fourth place in DOTA 2 international.
Takhasomi explained to baffled e-sports fans that the players who departed would launch their own project. He did not elaborate on the details but promised to give updates.
Team Liquid will not be out of future DOTA 2 championship games, Goossens said. However, the team has yet to announce a roster of players for upcoming games.