The International 8 is just two days away, and Valve, the publisher and developer of Dota 2, has released information on the group assignments for each team playing in Vancouver, Canada.
Wykrhm “Wyk” Reddy, the social media manager for Dota 2, announced the team distribution on his official Twitter account.
Looking at the spread this year, it is clear that Group A will be highly competitive. Team Liquid and PSG-LGD, the second and third-place teams in the Pro Circuit respectively, are in this group. Dota 2 Asia Championship 2018 winner Mineski will also play in Group A, adding to the tough competition. Fnatic will join them, creating a double Southeast Asian threat.
SEA teams thrive in unpredictable matches, which is exactly what the best-of-two group stage format is all about. Winstrike Team and Invictus Gaming will have a tough time in this group.
In Group B, the Pro Circuit leaders Virtus Pro are the marquee lineup. Team Secret, the fourth-place team in the Pro Circuit, will also be competing, along with Vici Gaming, Newbee, TNC Predator, OpTic Gaming, and VGJ Storm representing North America.
The wild card Team Serenity will likely struggle in Group B due to their lack of experience in such a massive event. However, they can treat this as an educational trip.
Regardless of what fans might think of the groups, it is obvious that this will be a very eventful iteration of The International. With more than $20 million and ultimate Dota 2 glory on the line, we can expect highly entertaining matches.