L.A. Bound: Teams locked in for Dota Summit 8 in SoCal.

Beyond the Summit set to add some Dota to the holiday season as 9 teams journey to the Summit House in Los Angeles

Winter is on its way, and while the Northern Hemisphere braces for chill winds, cooler temperatures, and snowfall, the Dota 2 world is preparing for another round of Majors, Minors, and Qualifiers. The Dota Summit 8 is one of those events, as the Minor has completed its stretch of regional qualifiers as the Winter season and the Dota 2 season are set to intersect in the coming months. Beginning on December 12th and running through to the 17th, the Dota Summit 8 Minor will bring 9 teams to the Summit House in Los Angeles, California for a chance at a Minor Title and a share of $300,000 in prize money and 300 Qualifying Points. The latest in Beyond the Summit’s tournament series(the 8th in fact, if that wasn’t clear from the name), the Dota Summit 8 Minor promises to deliver both the fantastic Dota and the lighthearted fun and meme material that has been a calling card of past iterations.

As of this moment, the prize pool distribution for this event is not known, but the details of how the money will be divvied up will likely come as we get closer to the Minor’s start date. For now, the information available will be outlined below, with any further information added or updated in the future.

1st: Undisclosed Cash Value(Total) and 150 Qualifying Points(per player)

2nd: Undisclosed Cash Value(Total) and 90 Qualifying Points(per player)

3rd: Undisclosed Cash Value(Total) and 45 Qualifying Points(per player)

4th: Undisclosed Cash Value(Total) and 15 Qualifying Points(per player)

5th-6th: Undisclosed Cash Value(per team)

7th-8th: Undisclosed Cash Value(per team)

With that out of the way, let’s shift our focus onto the 8 teams that will be competing at the Summit House in December. The field of participants includes a few relatively new faces, alongside a handful of Pro Circuit veterans. We’ll take a short look at where each of these teams stands right now at the conclusion of the regional qualifiers. Disclaimer time: this post will contain some brief and shallow details for each of the competing teams. A more thorough breakdown of the participating teams will come closer to the start of the event itself.

The Direct Invitees

425px-OG_RB_Logo OG(Europe) – European squad OG will be making its second appearance at a Pro Circuit event so far this season, having received the first direct invite to the Dota Summit 8 Minor. The team got off to a rocky start to kick off the season, struggling a bit in the early qualifiers for the European region. Though perhaps not the leading team that it had envisioned itself as, OG still sits in a favorable position to turn its season around and breakthrough into the Pro Circuit standings, beginning in Los Angeles.

The team’s most recent LAN performance at the Dota Pit League was not the kind of result that the squad was hoping for, as it lost its initial series against Vici Gaming and ended up finishing in a disappointing 5th-6th position. Since that performance in Croatia though, the team has looked much improved, winning the European Qualifier for both the MDL Macau and Captain’s Draft 4.0 Minors, as well as coming just 1 win away from a spot in the DreamLeague Season 8 Major. The inconsistency that has plagued this team appears to be fading away, and the European squad look ready to step back onto the international stage. There is always the threat of a relapse, but for now OG are standing in quite the favorable position as it aims for a return to the top tier of teams on the Pro Circuit.

600px-EG Evil Geniuses(North America) – Evil Geniuses joins OG as the second of the directly invited teams for the Dota Summit 8. EG’s status as a direct invitee was not announced until after the conclusion of the qualifiers(and thus was not included in the original version of this post), but the North American squad will be joining the other participants on home soil in Los Angeles. EG has found itself fighting in a hotly contested North American region, with challengers like OpTic Gaming and compLexity Gaming proving ready to compete both at home and on the international stage. The convergence of 3 NA teams at this Minor could provide EG the chance to distance itself from its regional rivals, but the task will be difficult even for this veteran squad.

The last time EG was on the big stage at a Pro Circuit event was in Hamburg for the season’s first Major. EG couldn’t quite make the cut at the Major, falling short against both Team Secret and Newbee and finishing in the combined 5th-6th position. While the result in Hamburg wasn’t what the North American squad had been hoping for, its previous top 4 finish at the PGL Open Bucharest still earned the team enough Qualifying Points(90) to put itself on the board in the Pro Circuit standings. In the wake of these performances EG has been looking stronger as a team, defeating regional rivals Digital Chaos and compLexity Gaming(twice) to win a spot in the DreamLeague Season 8 Major. With the team looking improved in its home region, EG will be looking for a chance to carry that momentum onto the international level, and its trip to Los Angeles for the Dota Summit 8 could be just the opportunity it needs.

The King’s Cup: America Winner

OpTic_Gaming OpTic Gaming(North America) – In lieu of a third direct invite, Beyond the Summit opted to provide an extra opportunity for a team from the Americas, as a slot in the Dota Summit 8 Minor was reserved for the winner of the North and South American exclusive King’s Cup: America. OpTic Gaming was the recipient of that opportunity, having won the tournament and secured its first appearance at a Pro Circuit event this season. Captained by one of the game’s best in Peter “ppd” Dager, OpTic Gaming will be looking to make a statement in Los Angeles.

OpTic Gaming has had some struggles finding consistent success in North America so far this season, competing in 7 regional qualifiers and failing to win any of them. The team is scheduled to participate in the North American Qualifier a little over a week from now for the Galaxy Battles II Major, but aside from that this chance at the Dota Summit 8 Minor may be one of the team’s only opportunities to get itself Qualifying Points on the Pro Circuit anytime soon. The pressure will be on for OpTic Gaming to come in at the top of its game and convert this opportunity into the team’s first Pro Circuit success of the season.

The Qualifier Winners

727px-Col_big_logo compLexity Gaming(North America) – CompLexity Gaming is beginning to heat up just as the weather is starting to cool off. The team has participated in one Pro Circuit event so far, but it has now lined up spots in 2 Minors in the coming months, and is beginning to distance itself from some of its rivals in the North American region. The team’s previous LAN performance at the StarLadder i-League Minor netted the team a top 4 finish and its first Qualifying Points of the season, and the NA squad will be looking to recapture that momentum for a solid run in Los Angeles.

Since that top 4 finish in Kiev, compLexity Gaming have stepped up its level of play in impressive fashion. The team beat out OpTic Gaming, VGJ.Storm, and Immortals to win the North America Qualifier for the Captain’s Draft 4.0 Minor, and finished 2nd in the NA Qualifier for the DreamLeague Season 8 Major. Add on top of this the fact that the team is scheduled to participate in the Perfect World Masters Minor in just a few days, and compLexity Gaming is fast becoming the premier team in the North American region. The North American squad has earned itself a wealth of opportunities to expand upon its positive start to the season, now it fall upon the team to make the most of those chances.

Sacredlogo.png Sacred(South America) – Sacred is one of the most recent additions to the South American Dota scene, with the team coming into existence near the end of October. Following the disbanding of Digital Chaos.SA, the former roster’s Peruvian players opted to stay together and form their own, all-Peruvian, squad to continue competing on the Pro Circuit. Seeing as how the squad has only been in existence for a little under a month, this appearance at the Dota Summit 8 will be the team’s first Pro Circuit event of the season. While the roster itself may be new, the players on Sacred have a history in the South American region, and the team will be looking to add some international success to its experience within its home region.

Sacred have only participated in 2 regional qualifiers since its creation, but its performances in those qualifiers have been somewhat encouraging. The Peruvian squad finished in the 3rd-4th position in the South America Qualifier for the MDL Macau Minor, and won the Qualifier that earned it this spot at the Dota Summit 8 Minor. This short sample size shows that Sacred can compete against its regional rivals, but we will see if the squad can replicate that success in Los Angeles and make a statement in its Pro Circuit debut.

627px-Team_Kinguin Team Kinguin(Europe) – With OG receiving a direct invite to this event, the door was open for another European team to make the jump on to the big stage. All-Polish squad Team Kinguin was the team to take advantage of that opening, earning a spot at what will be the team’s second Pro Circuit event of the season. The team has had some encouraging, if somewhat inconsistent, results in its home region so far, and it will look to build up some momentum against international competition.

Team Kinguin has participated in five Pro Circuit Qualifiers so far this season, winning two of them. The team posted a 10-4 record in the Europe Qualifier for the Perfect World Masters, and followed that performance up with a 5-1 showing in the qualifier for this Minor. The only concern for Team Kinguin in these qualifiers has been the absence of teams like Team Secret and OG. Going up against top international opponents in Los Angeles, Team Kinguin will be put to an even tougher test than its regional contests have provided so far. We will see if the squad has what it takes to succeed at the highest level.

600px-Virtus Virtus.pro(Commonwealth of Independent States) – Virtus.pro stands as the top team on the pro circuit, having picked right back up where it left off last season as one of the world’s leading teams. The team will be making its third appearance at a Pro Circuit event this season, after successful campaigns at both the ESL One Hamburg Major and the Dota Pit Minor. VP has been on a tear to start its season, and there’s little reason to believe that the team will suffer a drop off in its level of play anytime soon.

Virtus.pro have been on a small break from the Pro Circuit following the team’s 4th place finish at the Dota Pit League Minor in Croatia, but that brief interlude shouldn’t be a factor that affects the team’s play in Los Angeles. The squad’s performances both within the CIS region and against international opponents help instill a high level of confidence that the team will be able to put up another solid performance at this event and perhaps increase its lead in the Pro Circuit standings. VP has earned its reputation as one of the world’s premier teams, and that reputation will be put to the test once again in Los Angeles. With the chance to build upon its already comfortable lead in the Pro Circuit standings, Virtus.pro and its fans should be looking forward to another opportunity for the CIS squad to flex its metaphorical muscles in LA.

800px-LGD LGD Gaming(China) – LGD Gaming is a team that has been particularly interesting to watch so far this season, as the Chinese squad have spent the first few months sitting just on the edge of ultimate success both at home and on the international stage. The squad will be playing in its second Pro Circuit LAN, although this will be the first time the team will do so with its full roster, as the squad played without support player Chen “Victoria” Guanhong in its previous appearance at the PGL Open Bucharest Minor. With the team back at full strength, LGD Gaming is hoping to fuel another strong run at a Pro Circuit LAN and climb up the ranks of the Pro Circuit standings.

Since the team’s performance in Bucharest, LGD Gaming has been working its already impressive profile within the Chinese region. The team managed a 5th-6th finish in the Top Division of the Dota 2 Professional League. While the finish is a bit of a downgrade for the squad as it finished in 2nd place in the previous season of the DPL, the performance guarantees that LGD Gaming will remain in the Top Division for the next DPL season. Aside from the DPL, LGD Gaming also found success in the qualifier for this Minor, defeated VGJ.Thunder, EHOME, Newbee, and Vici Gaming on its path to qualifying for the event. That’s quite the list of victories that LGD Gaming has accrued, and that recent regional success combined with the team’s strong run against international opponents in Bucharest makes the Chinese squad a formidable opponent at the Dota Summit 8 Minor.

Fnaticlogo Fnatic(Southeast Asia) – Fnatic got off to an absolutely horrible start to the season, hitting significant struggles and difficulties almost from the outset of its campaign. The team could not establish a consistent level of play within the Southeast Asian region, and many SEA rivals were managing to get the better of the squad. The team underwent a recent roster change, moving Steve “Xcalibur” Ye to a substitute position and bringing in Abed “Abed” Yusop, formerly a member of Digital Chaos. With Abed in the lineup, Fnatic have begun to raise its level of play, earning a spot in the team’s third Pro Circuit event(but only the team’s 1st qualifier win). Things are beginning to look much better for a Fnatic lineup that was stumbling its way through the early stages of the season.

Since the team’s previous LAN event at the Dota Pit League Minor, Fnatic have taken several steps towards reclaiming a spot among the top teams in the SEA region. The team placed 4th in the SEA Qualifier for the MDL Macau Minor, losing 0-2 in the semifinal to the eventual winner TNC Pro Team. Fnatic followed that impressive performance up with an even stronger run at the qualifier for this Dota Summit 8 Minor, defeating Execration, TNC Pro Team, and even Mineski to claim its spot in Los Angeles. This dramatic shift in fortune and results for Fnatic has both the team and its fans hopeful that the poor start to the season can be turned around and overcome. Fnatic will have even more chances to prove that its ready to compete, even before the squad makes its way to Los Angeles in December. The team is scheduled to participate in the SEA Qualifier for both the DreamLeague Season 8 and the Galaxy Battles II Majors. If all goes well, Fnatic could find itself having a schedule filled with Pro Circuit events in the near future.

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