Visa issuers, have mercy: Dota 2’s The International returns to Seattle after four years

NA crowd, best crowd.

Screengrab via Valve

Valve just unveiled the host city for Dota 2’s The International 2023. After traversing four different countries since 2017, TI is set to embark on a nostalgic homecoming in Seattle, USA.

Despite organizing the first-ever TI in Cologne, Germany, 2011, Valve turned Seattle into the home of the International for the following six years. The KeyArena in Seattle resonated as the battleground of the top teams in the world, but Valve made the decision to take the Aegis of Champions on a world tour when the event center closed its door for renovations.

Seattle, the birthplace of The International, will once again play host to the electrifying clashes between the world’s top Dota 2 teams in October 2023.

In the announcement video, a Valve employee is seen to be preparing the Aegis of Champions for a journey to Seattle. While this grand return was greeted with a warm welcome by the Dota 2 fans, it can also be seen a double-edged sword, especially after the visa issues that plagued the Berlin Major.

Related: Visa issues wreak havoc ahead of Berlin Major, forcing changes for top Dota 2 teams

Teams like OG, Aster, and BetBoom were forced to play with stand-ins in the Major as their players weren’t able to secure Schengen Visas in time. Considering the United States visa can also be difficult to obtain, players who struggled in Europe can find themselves in the middle of another visa scandal.

While most teams with stand-ins performed well in the major and secured DPC points, heading to the biggest Dota 2 event of the year with subs and last-minute players can damage morale. Valve is likely to play an important role during the visa procedures, as the developer’s internal connections can significantly help the players and teams. 

About the author
Gökhan Çakır

Strategical Content Writer and Fortnite Lead for Dot Esports. Gökhan Çakır graduated as an industrial engineer in 2020 and has since applied his analytical and strategic thinking to many endeavors. As a natural-born gamer, he honed his skills to a professional level in Dota 2. Upon giving up on the Aegis of Champions in 2019, Gökhan started his writing career, covering all things gaming while his heart remains a lifetime defender of the Ancients.