The International 2021’s unknown date and location aren’t the only problems with the event right now.
A number of personalities in and around the Dota 2 esports scene have confirmed that Valve is effectively playing no part in broadcasting the qualifiers for The International 2021 and is not actively partnered with any of the Dota 2 personalities or institutions that are broadcasting the event. This comes after Valve made nearly $120 million off the TI10 Battle Pass.
Robb “Robnroll” Blakeman, a Valorant and Dota 2 caster who is working the South American and CIS qualifiers for Beyond the Summit, discussed the topic on Twitter:
Valve, after making THE biggest amount of any TI battlepass ever last year and having just released a new battlepass today and have plans to release another very soon are no longer paying for casters to cover the TI quals, which is being left up to BTS.
— Robb (@RobnrollGaming) June 24, 2021
The news was corroborated by others within the scene who discussed systemic issues with Valve’s handling of casting for Dota 2 events. It also spawned questions regarding Valve’s commitment to Dota 2 esports as a whole and whether the company is looking to pivot away from it entirely.
Valve also only started paying casters around like TI5-6ish? because studios refused to cast in-lobby for free and wanted to make more interactive and dynamic hubs (0s delay, chat interaction, swapping between interesting games). Valve started allocating games at a fixed price.
— Ben Steenhuisen (@Noxville) June 24, 2021
This comes after TI10 was forced out of Stockholm. Valve blamed its local partners for the event, but the Swedish Esports Federation later said that the event didn’t necessarily have to be moved. TI10’s date and location is currently uncertain.
With Valve not taking part in the event’s broadcast, Beyond the Summit is set to broadcast the entirety of the qualifiers to The International 2021. As of this writing, the CIS and South American qualifiers are both underway with the two regions set to decide their winners on Saturday.
An all-star lineup for an all-star show 🤩
Please give a warm welcome to our talent joining us for the English EEU #TI10 Qualifier Broadcast!
Day 1 of EEU begins tomorrow at 11 AM MSK, 1AM PDT!
— BTS Dota (@BTSdota) June 22, 2021
The North American and Southeast Asian qualifiers will begin on June 30, followed by Europe and China on July 7. Other independent casters will be casting the qualifiers as well.