Dota 2’s “The International” is known to have the largest prize pools in all of esports. Let’s throw ourselves back to the best TI events of them all.
“The International” is Dota 2’s annual tournament, where the best teams gather to compete for the ultimate title. Being a TI winner will help you gain the respect of every single Dota fan, as casual and professional Dota players know how hard it is to win one. With all the stakes that The International offers, we’ve had some dream runs and insane matches. Here are some of the best iterations of The International!
The best iteration of The International is undoubtedly the eighth edition, The International 2018. OG Esports found themselves victorious in this tournament and took home over eleven million dollars in prize winnings. This particular TI had everything. From storylines, incredible comebacks, and miracles.
The main highlight of the story for Ti8 is the departure of Tal “Fly” Aizik and Gustav “s4” Magnusson from OG to EG. Their roster move wasn’t done in a civilized fashion, and happened right before the tournament as well. This event left OG’s roster broken, and they had to quickly recoup any last-minute players who could join them for the ride through the open qualifier’s Dota 2 matches.
Though OG made it through the qualifiers, nobody in the Dota 2 community expected them to pose as a threat in the actual tournament. However, OG quickly shut down the doubters. Eventually, OG faced off against EG in the Upper Bracket. With all the storylines built up already, the match didn’t disappoint as it ended up being one of the most memorable Dota 2 matches of all time. OG won the series 2 to 1, and Johan “N0tail” Sundstein gave Fly a cold look on their handshake after the match.
OG went on to have an incredible comeback against LGD, in Game 3 of the Upper Bracket Final, to punch their ticket to the Grand Final. LGD quickly disposed of EG in the Lower Bracket Final, and got their rematch with OG in the Finals. OG pulled off an unbelievable comeback in Game 4, to win the game and the series, crowning themselves as the winners of The International 2018.
This TI was extremely special due to the intense matches, legendary voice lines, and of course, OG’s outstanding run. Nobody expected OG to have a chance at this event, but they ended up winning the entire thing and made some legendary Dota 2 scores.
The International 2013 event happened almost a decade ago, but is still remembered by millions of Dota fans around the world. This particular TI had everything a spectator could ask for. Competitive games, great stories, and an incredible Grand Finals match.
The Grand Finals of Ti3 featured the giants Natus Vincere, against the underdogs Alliance. Na’Vi were the favorites coming into the matchup, as they had bagged a TI victory already at Ti1, and made it to the finals of Ti2. This meant that this was their third TI Grand Finals in a row, but Alliance showed that they were hungrier for the Aegis than Na’Vi were.
As every Dota fan hoped, the Grand Finals match went the distance, going all the way to Game 5. Game 5 of the Finals of Ti3 was quite close, but Alliance used the strategy that had found success throughout the tournament – split pushing. The Swedish roster focused on pressuring all sides of the map by shoving creep waves all the way into Na’Vi’s base.
When Jonathan “Loda” Berg and Henrik “AdmiralBulldog” Ahnberg were pushing the Tier 4 towers on Na’Vi’s side of the map, Danil “Dendi” Ishutin quickly teleported back to defend the base. However, Gustav “s4″ Magnusson on his Puck landed a “Million-dollar Dream Coil” which canceled Dendi’s teleportation back to the base.
This meant that Na’Vi’s Midlaner was unable to defend the base. Alliance took this opportunity by focusing all their damage towards the Tier 4 towers, and eventually the Ancient. Alliance ended up destroying the Ancient of Na’Vi and took the title of being champions of The International 2013.
In Ti3, we had a series that went all the way to five games, and s4 made a million-dollar play that will go down in Dota 2 history.
Though OG had a miracle run at Ti8 and showed why they were the best team in the world that year, not many people actually believed in them coming into Ti9. However, the same exact roster showed up and cleaned the house, proving that they were indeed the best roster in the world.
Ti9 had its fair share of intense matches, and crazy comebacks. The matches throughout the entire event were very entertaining and competitive, with big names such as Team Secret and PSG.LGD doing well in their respective runs. However, two TI-winning lineups showed why they had their titles under their belts.
Nobody expected OG to breeze through the Upper Bracket, but they did. The Ti8 winners disposed of everyone and waited for their opponents in the Grand Finals. Meanwhile, the star-studded Team Liquid roster, with their newest addition of Aliwi “w33” Omar clawed their way through the Lower Bracket to meet OG in the finals.
The International 2019’s Grand Finals was super interesting because the OG and Team Liquid were the two teams to meet in the Grand Finals. Prior to this event, no player, or team, had ever won two TI titles. Well in this Finals, 9 TI winners were present. Nine of the most successful Dota players would compete for a chance to be the first two-time TI winners in the world.
Unfortunately, the Grand Finals of Ti9 wasn’t as close as people thought. OG were able to solidify their title and reclaimed it for the second time. Nobody had won two TIs before, but OG had done it, and even did it back-to-back.
Though the Finals wasn’t too competitive, we still had amazing Dota 2 results and matches throughout the entire event, with matches such as EG vs Team Secret. This particular edition of The International was special because we were finally able to crown two-time Ti winners.
In conclusion, the absurd prize pools, the packed stadiums, and the incredibly high-skilled players make The International events extremely special. However, some TIs are simply better than others. Millions of Dota fans gather to witness The International every year in case it becomes the best one in history.