In preparation for The International 2018 Dota 2 tournament, Valve has begun the process of crowdfunding the contest’s prize pool.
While it seems a bit strange that a firm as large as Valve needs the help of the community to fund its esports tournament, it’s how The International has become recognised for its massive prize pools, which grow larger and larger every year. In 2017 the pool tipped the scales at $24 million and this year Valve is aiming higher than ever.
The tournament is funded through something called a Battle Pass. This pass grants players access to the festivities available in the build-up to and during The International. This includes cosmetic items and in 2018, new game modes.
The first of these new game modes is The Underhollow.
Battle through a labyrinth filled with monsters, marvels, and many other three-player enemy squads as you search for Roshan’s rarest cheese and work to be the last team standing. You’ll need to navigate carefully to earn the XP and Gold needed to destroy your opponents.
The second of these new modes is Cavern Crawl which will require players complete Dota 2 games with specific heroes to unlock more of the cavern. Valve says players will unlock item sets, Battle Points, and a chance to bag a “comically rare” Jade Baby Roshan courier.
The third mode revealed by Valve is Mutation Mode. This unranked gameplay mode adds random modifiers to the game. Valve explains: “Queue up for Mutation, an unranked game mode played with a random selection of gameplay modifiers ranging from global Rupture events to the ability to resurrect your teammates. With a new set of modifiers in effect each day, you’ll need to be on your toes to destroy the enemy Ancient and stop the mutation madness.”
In addition to this players will also be able to unlock new sprays which are placed on the map, custom lane creeps, a change to tipping in-game (you no longer use Battle Points from your pool to tip), role-based matchmaking and pro circuit predictions which are available once the MDL Changsha Major begins.
Players also get treasures that unlock new cosmetic items for heroes as they earn more Battle Points. Battle Points can also be used to unlock new items in the game such as taunts, new courier styles and item effects.
A base Battle Pass will cost you R126 but you can pick one up loaded with 75 levels for R465.
Additional Battle Points can be earned but you can bump up your pass by buying levels. A bundle of five levels will cost you R31, 11 levels for R63 and 24 levels will cost you R126.
For those wondering, you can once again get yourself a 1/5th-scale alloy replica of the Aegis of Champions provided you get your Battle Pass to level 1000. If you already have one of those why not bump that Battle Pass to level 2000 and earn yourself a Collector’s Baby Roshan.
The International 2018 tournament takes place at the Rogers Arena in Vancouver, Canada from 20th to 25th August.