How to watch The International 8

On Aug. 15, the most prestigious event in Dota 2 will kick off in Vancouver, Canada.

Photo via Valve

The International 8 is finally upon us. 18 of the world’s best teams will descend upon Vancouver, Canada—marking the first time that the event will be held outside of the United States since TI1.

More than $20 million in prize money will be on the line. Teams that finish in sixth place or higher will receive $1 million each for their efforts, and even those that place dead last will get a share of the pot.

TI8 will serve as the crowning event of the Dota 2 Pro Circuit, which had its inaugural season this year. Who will take the ultimate prize at the end of it all?

How do I watch?

For those who won’t be lucky enough to watch live in Rogers Arena, there are several streaming outlets to choose from. The primary one is the official Twitch channel, where the broadcast will include the games themselves, analysis from the experts’ panel, and additional content involving the audience and personnel backstage. The same content will also be available on Steam Broadcasting.

Image via Valve

If you’re primarily interested in just watching the matches, we recommend doing so through DotaTV, the spectator mode built into the Dota 2 client. Unlike the Twitch or Steam Broadcasting channels, users on DotaTV have full control over the experience. For example, you can pan the camera yourself at any given time, set your viewer perspective to a single player for the entire game, or even choose to listen to non-English speaking casters.

Attending a pubstomp is another option for those that feel like socializing with fellow fans in their area. Pubstomps are typically held in sports bars and other similar establishments; this gives them an atmosphere not far off from traditional sports viewing parties. Head over to Barcraft United to check for pubstomps in your place of residence.

For those not familiar at all with Dota 2 but still want to see this historic spectacle unfold, there’s the newcomer stream. This specialized channel features casters that explain the very basics of the game, without getting too much into the nitty-gritty. The newcomer stream is one of the most praised aspects of The International, and is a fantastic way to get hooked on the game.

What’s on the line?

A mouth-watering $24 million (and counting, thanks to the crowdfunding campaign) will be up for grabs this year. Every single team, whether they make it to the main event or not, will be given a share of the prize money. Apart from the cash there is the Aegis of Champions, the most coveted trophy in all of Dota 2.

As of the time of writing, the prize pool distribution is as follows:

  • 1st: $10,697,321
  • 2nd: $3,889,935
  • 3rd: $2,552,770
  • 4th: $1,701,847
  • 5th-6th: $1,094,044
  • 7th-8th: $607,802
  • 9th-12th: $364,681
  • 13th-16th: $121,560
  • 17th-18th: $60,780

What’s the format?

From Aug. 15 to 18, the 18 teams will fight for the right to play in the main event at Rogers Arena. The group stage will feature two groups of nine teams each, where only the top eight squads in each group will advance to the playoffs.

The main event, which will take place from Aug. 20 to 25, will be played through a standard double elimination bracket. We have the full match details for the main event here.