The International is Valve’s annual Dota 2 tournament that has routinely featured the largest prize pool in esports.

Every year the prize pool climbs higher thanks to a crowd-funding model that sees players adding to the kitty.

This year is no different with the prize pool currently sitting at $34 419 209 (~R582 million), and that figure set to grow further. As it stands the winners of The International would walk away with millions in prize money but that’s where the problem comes in.

The International usually takes place toward the end of August or the beginning of September but as we’re currently living in “unprecedented times” so travelling is a no go.

For a tournament which brings together the best teams from around the world this is a problem and as it stands there is no word on when this tournament will ultimately take place.

“In following how the pandemic has been developing globally, the recent increase in the unpredictability of COVID-19 means we can’t yet commit to new dates for TI10 [The International 10] and the DPC [Dota Pro Circuit]. We share your eagerness in returning to these events, and will announce updates as soon as we can,” the official Dota 2 Twitter account stated earlier this week.

With that in mind, how much more can this prize pool grow before the tournament actually happens?

The Battle Pass, which is the mechanism through which Valve gets crowdfunding, is set to be available until 19th September but given the tournament is in a state of flux, that could be extended.