Even the mighty gaming industry isn’t immune to the world-changing effects of COVID-19. The International, DOTA 2’s Championship competition, has been delayed until 2021.
The International delayed until 2021
On April 30, 2020, Valve made an announcement on the DOTA 2 blog that The International had been postponed from this year until next. The news comes as COVID-19 continues to be a major health concern. With limits on public gatherings, holding a massive public event like the DOTA 2 Championships just isn’t feasible.
Regarding the postponement, Valve had this to say:
After extensive consideration of the global health emergency stemming from COVID-19, we have made the difficult choice to delay The International. We have been exploring various date possibilities, but it is likely that the event will need to happen in 2021. Given the highly volatile landscape for local gathering restrictions, virus trajectory, and global travel policies, we don’t expect to have enough confidence to communicate firm dates in the near future. In the meantime, we are working on restructuring the DPC season for the fall, and will be providing more information as soon as we have it.
The International had been scheduled to take place in Stockholm, Sweden. Valve had been taking proposals from other major cities for 2021's event, though it now appears that 2021 will see the Stockholm tournament take place. The International looked to be in danger for months since the pandemic began with a number of majors either being postponed or canceled outright.
The post also went on to mention the Battle Pass. Usually, a Battle Pass is released closer to the event, but players will be pleased to hear the pass will be released soon. Players should anticipate some delays as the developers are currently working from home. Valve says, “The Battle Pass will be at least a couple of weeks later than usual.”
While it might be disappointing for some players, both professional and casual, it’s at least a sign that major companies like Valve are taking the pandemic seriously. Plus, the Battle Pass is still coming out soon, so there will be plenty of goodies to unlock while we all chill out at home. Make sure to check out the Shacknews DOTA 2 page for more updates as they come.