The International postponed
Amid the pandemic of Coronavirus, Valve has already announced that The International will be postponed until possibly 2021.
Dota 2 fans across the world, while possibly not surprised, are at least collectively mourning the fact that there will not be an International held in August this year as scheduled.
Last summer during The International 9, Valve announced that their 10th-anniversary iteration of the pinnacle of all Dota 2 events would be held in Stockholm, Sweden. European fans rejoiced as it would be the first International held on European soil since The International 1 was held in Germany.
But the best-laid plans of mice and men —including esports and Valve — often go awry.
With more than 3 million cases and over 200,000 deaths have been reported since December 2019, Coronavirus pandemic has put the entire world on hold and wreaked havoc on virtually everything under the sun. And esports and Dota 2 is no exception.
The DPC 2019-2020 season has been interrupted. ESL One Los Angeles Major was 'postponed' and then changed to online league play without a Major status. Then One Esports Dota 2 Jakarta was moved until November. Teams started issuing work from home orders and sending players back to their home countries. Days later EPICENTER and DotaPit Minor were canceled by Valve themselves. Although One Esports Singapore Major qualifiers are scheduled for later this month, May 17 there is little doubt that Valve will also be canceling that in the near future. Especially considering the dramatic decision to already postpone The International 2020 until possibly 2021.
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 addition, Valve will also be proactive in already restructuring things for next season, which was expected to take on a regional league format. While the system does favor the regional online play which seems to be most suited in these conditions, there are still Major LANs scheduled and tier distributions to consider.
The silver lining? At least Valve is still anticipating releasing the battle pass in the near future. Although it won't be next week as hoped for, it will be sooner than later.