The International 9, the Dota 2 esports tournament has shaken the industry as it managed to eclipse the record with the highest amount of prize pool of $24,000,545.
At the time of writing the current prize pool sits at $25,702,092, with $24,102,092 of that coming from crowdfunding, and the other $1,600,000 being the base prize pool from Valve. This beats last year’s total of $25,532,177 by more than a few dollars, and this year’s total will only rise as there is still time for the community to add more to the total by purchasing in game items.
Players are able to add to the prize pool by purchasing the TI9 Battle Pass in the game and then purchasing extras such as levels to get more rewards in the game, or TI9 themed loot boxes that give players exclusive cosmetics. 25 per cent of all the TI9 related purchases are added to the prize pool, so while that number is impressive, the number Valve has pocketed from all the microtransactions is much higher.
In comparison, League of Legends’ prize pool was $6.4 million and Valve’s own Counter-Strike: Global Offensive’s largest prize pool ever was $1.5 million. The International 9 starts on 15 August with the group stages while the qualifiers start from 3 July.