Budding professional Dota 2 players from Australia and New Zealand are being given a chance to hone their skills in a truly one of a kind regional Dota 2 tournament being hosted by Oceanic Esports.

Why Regional?

With global and international Esports events being all but impossible to host right now regional organisations, like Oceanic Esports, are stepping up to host tournaments and fill in the void left by the postponement and outright cancellation of some of the biggest Dota 2 tournaments in the world.

Dota 2 is a massive Esport, millions of people play the game every day, and it consistently hits peak concurrent daily users of over 700 000 players. There is an enormous demand for the broadcast of high-level professional Dota 2 because the game has such a high skill ceiling, it truly is thrilling to see what the best players can pull off.

On top of that, people who play Dota 2 tend to immerse themselves in the game. When they aren’t playing, they are watching. And when they are watching they are wagering, because the feeling of competitiveness doesn’t stop when you aren’t playing.

Watching and betting on Dota 2 is becoming so mainstream, the final of its International tournament has been broadcast on ESPN and TBS. Esports has grown exponentially in the past years, and there are odds available for Dota 2 matches on various platforms, even bookies like PlayUp that traditionally focus on outdoor sports and horse racing have gotten in on the Dota 2 craze.

Oceanic Esports Dota 2 Tournament

What makes this event so unique is its format. For most Dota 2 tournaments, full teams of five enter a qualifying phase where the top teams go through to duke it out for the championship in the main event. Because of this, teams are usually very prepared, having spent the weeks in the lead-up practising with their teammates and studying opponents.

However, for this event, the top captains from the Oceanic region have been gathered. They will each select their team in a draft format from an available pool of players. There isn’t anything like it anywhere else in the world of Dota 2.

The idea behind the format is to help grow the skills and expertise of players in the region by forcing them outside of their comfort zones by needing to play with teams, players and strategies they might not have considered or even heard of before.

“We hope our efforts here will bring about a new era of talent and competitiveness for Esports within Oceania and that it will bring much more opportunities for our athletes to compete against the best of the best across the globes,” said Oceanic co-founder Justin Yuen in a press release about the tournament.

Esports Pedigree Down Under

The Oceanic region, much like the Dota 2 tournament it is hosting, is in a somewhat unique situation in the Esports landscape. Australia and New Zealand are both countries with strong economies, and a thriving middle class, so expensive hobbies like gaming are more accessible to a larger portion of the population than in many other places around the world.

This means it has a big player base of passionate gamers, which has translated into numerous players going on to have very successful careers. A prime example are professional esports players like Anathan “ana” Pham. He is one of the most successful Dota 2 players of all time having won millions of Dollars at The International, and Australian Counter-Strike: Global Offensive team Renegades, which has several podium finishes in major events.

However, there is a huge problem with the region’s geography. It is just too far away from anywhere, which means ping is a huge issue. Ping is effectively the time delay between when a player makes an input to when the game registers it and carries it out and, at the professional level, microseconds mean the difference between winning and losing.

The situation makes events like this one even more important because it allows top Australian gamers to get solid experience at a high level without having to move to Asia or America. It is a move that is sure to pay dividends for the Oceanic region’s Dota 2 players for many years.