NInjas in Pyjamas is leaving Dota 2. Again.
The esports organization announced that it is dropping its Dota 2 team and reevaluating its presence in the game. This is the third time where NiP has decided to pull out of Dota 2 throughout its history.
“This year has taken a massive toll on what was already an unstable ecosystem. With the indefinite postponement of the DPC and The International, we find ourselves on an increasingly unclear path to financial stability within the game. We’re seeing a high concentration of talent in the EU region, meaning that the cost of keeping up is markedly higher while revenues are dwindling,” NiP COO Jonas Gundersen said in a statement on the team’s website.
It’s just a chapter. We’re not giving up, we’re not uninstalling and we’re not going to low prio. Thank you all ❤️
— Ninjas in Pyjamas (@NiPGaming) November 30, 2020
Ninjas in Pyjamas has had a generally poor 2020. The organization got off to a good start by qualifying for the ESL One Los Angeles Major, but the transition from live events to online leagues was disastrous for the interregional Dota 2 roster. Captain Peter “ppd” Dager retired from active competition, which was followed by NiP dropping its roster in favor of the sponsorless Chicken Fighters team.
Though Chicken Fighters looked strong in its first few events, the team sputtered after signing with NiP and posted consistently poor results in events attended by top European organizations. NiP has been competing in EPIC League’s second division.
NiP is the latest multi-game organization to step away from Dota 2. Throughout 2020, organizations including Chaos Esports Club, Geek Fam, and Team Adroit have all bowed out of the game or ceased operations. A number of others entered into Dota 2 during the 2019-2020 season and quickly changed their minds, including Furia Esports, ForZe, and Cloud9.
The organization’s Dota 2 roster included the following players:
The team is currently competing in EPIC League Division 2, where it has a 5-4 record that could lead to a spot in the playoffs. It is currently unclear whether the team will continue competing together in EPIC League or beyond.
NInjas in Pyjamas has bounced into and out of Dota 2 on many occasions over the last six years and a comeback is possible. The organization first entered the game in 2015 but left later in the year after poor results. It did the same again in 2017.
In 2018 it formed a new team formed by ppd and leaned on his ability to bring together strong rosters over the following 18 months. This approach was generally successful, and included the team qualifying for The International 2019. The roster largely dissolved after the event, but ppd remained with the organization and put together a new roster that qualified for events in each major cycle of the 2019-2020 season.
It is unclear what the organization has planned, but NiP teased that this isn’t the end of its time in Dota 2. Gundersen stated that NiP will “rethink our strategy and regional presence completely,” which could open the door for the signing of a team in a different region.