Known Chinese esports figures recently spoke out about a potential plan to hold the tenth edition of The International in Shanghai with alleged support from China’s official distributor of Dota 2, Perfect World, and the municipal government.
Dota 2 analyst Kyle’s lengthy blog post about Valve’s handling of its premier tournament’s prize pool and the overall pro scene was translated and received considerable traction in the Chinese sphere, a notably passionate fan base.
Esports Haitao, the co-founder of Chinese broadcasting platform and tournament organizer ImbaTV, wrote on his Weibo regarding Kyle’s post, claiming that the municipal government supported a plan to host The International 10 in Shanghai but Valve reportedly didn’t agree.
“The whole article is on point, though I have something to add on,” Haitao said. “Actually, Perfect World CEO, Dr. Xiao Hong, approached Valve around April/May with the hope of bringing this year’s TI to Shanghai, while the municipal government expressed full support. Valve didn’t agree, however.”
Shanghai was the host city for TI9, marking the first time Dota 2‘s premier event was held outside of North America and Europe. TI10 was originally slated to be held in Stockholm, Sweden.
LGD Gaming’s CEO, Ruru, corroborated the account on her personal social media. “That’s right,” Ruru said. “Shanghai’s government was willing to coordinate the event with the same priority as League of Legends’ Worlds, but Valve didn’t agree.”
Riot’s World Championship for its flagship title League is being held in Shanghai right now.
Valve explained the company’s decision to put TI and the Dota Pro Circuit on hold in a blog post in September.
“Once the extent of the COVID-19 pandemic became clear, we posted about our plans to delay The International and started pre-booking arenas for various alternative dates and countries around the world,” Valve said. “We then began researching how to execute The International based on how different pandemic scenarios could play out, with the hope that we’d be able to host it as soon as possible.”
As the middle of the summer approached, the developer remained “very concerned” as “the volatility of the pandemic had grown significantly,” which made it difficult for there to be a coherent time frame for upcoming tournaments.
Valve eventually decided to postpone TI10 entirely, “operating under the assumption that the most likely outcome” is for the event to keep its Stockholm location and begin in August 2021. The current DPC season could be slated to restart in the first months of the new year.