Dota 2 developer Valve Software stirred controversy on Tuesday (16 August) when they revealed the list of 12 teams that received coveted direct invites to The International 11 (TI11), the game's marquee million-dollar world championship tournament.
The list of directly-invited teams to TI11 included PSG.LGD, OG, Team Spirit, Beastcoast, Team Aster, Thunder Awaken, BOOM Esports, TSM, Tundra Esports, Gaimin Gladiators, Evil Geniuses, and, most-eye-catchingly, Fnatic.
Southeast Asia's Fnatic taking the 12th spot became a point of contention among the Dota 2 community, as many believed it was Eastern Europe's Outsiders that had already claimed the last direct invite.
For many, the basis for Outsiders taking the 12th spot was the Dota Pro Circuit (DPC) rankings on Liquipedia, a comprehensive wiki for the esports scenes for Dota 2 and other titles.
Valve addressed the discrepancy between the official DPC and Liquipedia rankings by saying in a statement on the official Dota 2 Twitter account that "the DPC website reflects the official standings for the 2021-2022 season" and "not unofficial sources".
How did Outsiders lose 1 DPC point and end up placing below Fnatic?
With the conclusion of the PGL Arlington Major, all the DPC points for the 2021-2022 season had been distributed, and there would be no more regional leagues or Majors for teams to rack up additional points in order to qualify for a direct invite to TI11.
In Liquipedia's ranking, Outsiders were listed as having 1,020.05 points while Fnatic missed out on a direct invite by just 0.05 points.
However, Valve's ranking lists Outsiders as having 1,019 points, placing them lower than Fnatic's 1,020, losing out on a TI invite by just one DPC point.
This discrepancy is due to the fact that Valve rounds down DPC points after penalties and does not award teams partial points. Outsiders received several penalties during the DPC Tours.
The first was due to Outsiders replacing their position 5 support player, Illias "illias" Ganeev, with Egor "Xakoda" Lipartiya after the Winter Tour. This resulted in a 15% point penalty for the team.
The team also earned another penalty for playing the Winter Tour Regional Finals with a Xakoda as a stand-in prior to his formal induction into the team, which incurred a 40% penalty for the points earned in the event.
The third was due to Ivan "Pure" Moskalenko leaving Outsiders and being replaced by Roman "RAMZES666" Kushnarev. This caused another 15% point penalty to the points the team earned during the Spring Tour while Pure was still part of the roster.
When Valve hands out penalties, they remove the excess decimal points remaining. When Outsiders received a 15% total point penalty for their 198 DPC points, Valve's new point total was 168 and not 168.3.
The multiple penalties led to a point total difference of 1.05 between Valve's rounding down system, which awarded Outsiders 1,019 points, and the more mathematically accurate 1,020.05 points for the team.
It's important to note that Valve has used this rounding down system since the implementation of the DPC system.
The reason it has never been questioned before was that there has never been a situation in the past where it would have made a difference.
It's a rare situation for a TI invite to come down to just one DPC point between two teams. For now, Fnatic will be the second Southeast Asian team, along with BOOM Esports, to receive a direct invite to TI11.
For Outsiders, they have to go through the Eastern Europe Regional Qualifiers in order to attend the tournament. It will be a tough road for the team and time will tell who will be the second team to represent Eastern Europe at TI11.
TI11 is this year's iteration of Dota 2's marquee million-dollar world championship tournament. It will be hosted in Singapore in October, featuring a revamped format with 30 participating teams and a new Last Chance Qualifier.
Otomo is a long-time gaming enthusiast and caster. He has been playing games since he was 10 and is the biggest Dota 2 fan.
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