Aug 12 2016 - 5:05 pm

Fnatic strike back against Team Liquid at the International

Dota 2’s the International 6 is heading into the fourth day of the main event, and no fully-European teams remain in the competition
Sam Nordmark
Writer at @dotesports

Dota 2’s the International 6 is heading into the fourth day of the main event, and no fully-European teams remain in the competition.

Despite looking like the top region in the game prior to the start of the now $20.4 million tournament, with European superteam OG winning the Manila Major, Natus Vincere taking home their first title in nearly two years, and Team Liquid reaching the finals of the two most recent majors, each team fell far shorter than both experts or fans could have predicted.

Team Liquid’s run came to a close yesterday, when the Manila Major finalists were eliminated by the Malaysian Fnatic squad. The Europeans didn’t seem to be able to contest the Southeast Asian squad in the opening game of the series, where Fnatic quickly established a lead and never let it go. Zheng "Miduan" Yeik Nai in particular stood out for his great performance, his Ember Spirit play netted him a KDA of 14.5, as he went 14-2 in kills/deaths.

The second game showed the depth of talent on the squad, as Fnatic staged an incredible comeback, just one day after Evil Geniuses’ massive comeback against EHOME. After falling prey to Liquid’s now notorious early game prowess, the Europeans had amassed a lead exceeding 19,000 gold and looked poised to take the series to a deciding third map.

Fnatic’s first major blow to Liquid came inside the Radiant jungle, when Chong “Ohaiyo” Xin Khoo’s initiation on Sand King allowed Djardel “DJ” Jicko Mampusti to control Ivan "MinD_ContRoL" Borislavov’s Axe, effectively leaving the Bulgarian out of the fight all together. All three of Liquid’s cores fell, providing a huge influx of gold to the Malaysian team.

The engagements began going heavily in Fnatic’s favor, as the Malaysians team-wiped the tournament favorites in two consecutive team fights. All of Liquid’s work in the early game earned them a tremendous lead, but in less than 10 minutes both teams were suddenly on even footing.

At the peak of their momentum, Fnatic ambushed Liquid once again in the Radiant jungle, team wiping the Europeans again and securing themselves the entire bottom barracks. The game stretched on for another 20 minutes, but at that point it was mostly a formality. Liquid couldn’t withstand the constant engagements in which Miduan’s Queen of Pain and Chai “MuShi” Yee Fung’s Drow Ranger tore through the lineup.

At 54 minutes Liquid tapped out, and became the third tournament favorite along with Newbee and OG to be eliminated. At this point, it would seem that any of the five remaining teams has what it takes to be crowned champions.

Today - 8:14 pm

You’ll be able to watch DreamHack and ESL in virtual reality this year

A total of 14 events are set to be broadcast through the rapidly evolving technology.
Sam Nordmark
Writer at @dotesports
Image via Valve

Two of the world's largest esports tournament organizers are looking to integrate virtual reality in their tournament broadcasts for 2017.

ESL and DreamHack will air a total of 14 events through Sliver.TV, a virtual reality platform that allows viewers to immerse themselves fully in a 360-degree rendition of live tournament matches. This can be done on computers and mobile devices via the HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, and Google Cardboard.

The platform was field-tested last year at ESL One New York and IEM Oakland, with the Oakland event attracting 130,000 unique viewers to its VR broadcasts. A result that appears to have convinced ESL and DreamHack that the demand for virtual reality in esports is growing in tandem with the increasing popularity of the technology itself, which is predicted to generate $30 billion in revenue by 2021.

The partnership between Sliver, ESL, and DreamHack will provide "360 virtual reality, live replays and stats technology to millions of esports fans worldwide," according to Sliver CEO and founder Mitch Liu, and that the company's vision is "to forever transform the esports spectating experience by providing new perspectives and insights into live esports streams."

The events that will feature broadcasting through Sliver's platform are:

  • DreamHack Masters Las Vegas - Feb 15-19
  • Unnanounced DreamHack Masters stop
  • DreamHack ASTRO Open Austin - Apr 28-30
  • DreamHack ASTRO Open Atlanta - Jul 21-23
  • DreamHack ASTRO Open Montreal - Sep 8-10
  • DreamHack ASTRO Open Denver - Oct 20-22
  • DreamHack ASTRO Open Winter - Nov 30-Dec 2
  • Intel Extreme Masters Katowice, Poland - Feb 25-Mar 5
  • 3 Addtl IEM Global events
  • ESL One Cologne - Jul 3-8
  • ESL One New York - Sep 1-15
  • Unnanounced ESL One event

While virtual reality may still be in its infancy, the billion-dollar industry looks to continue growing in the coming years, and it will be interesting to see its potential influence on esports.

Jan 17 2017 - 10:33 pm

These are the first four teams confirmed for the IEM World Championship

Eight teams will be competing at one of the largest international League of Legends events.
Sam Nordmark
Writer at @dotesports
Photo via Riot Games

Half of the teams slated to compete at one of League of Legend's largest international events in 2017 have been announced.

The IEM World Championship will once conclude at IEM Katowice in Poland in March after roughly four months worth of competiton across three international events. Eight teams in total will be attending the event. Earlier today ESL revealed the first half that are slated to compete at the event.

The first four teams that will attend are Europe's H2K and Unicorns of Love, North Americans Cloud9 and lastly the Eastern European M19 squad, which was formerly known as Albus NoX Luna.

A majority of teams attending the event have been invited based off of their performance in the 2016 League World Championship. Additionally the victors at IEM's events in Oakland and Gyeonggi, which were won by Unicorns of Love and Samsung Galaxy respectively.

Reigning world champions SKT T1 and Chinese supersquad EDward Gaming have also secured invites to the event after reaching the quarterfinals of the 2016 World Championship, but have not confirmed their participation yet.

Eight teams will be competing at the event in total, though the final contestants are yet to be decided. None of the competitors representing the East Asian League Master Series were able to advance from the group stage. They also failed to qualify through IEM Oakland or Gyeonggi.

The IEM World Championship will take place from Feb. 22 to 26.