Even with the poor showing this year, The International 2023 will have one of the largest individual prize pools of any esports tournament on the calendar.
The International 2023’s prize pool has finally reached a major milestone as it surpasses the record set in 2013 by TI3 of $2,874,380. The TI12 prize pool reached this threshold sometime on Saturday, October 3, day nine of its fundraising period.
TI3 was the first edition of Dota 2’s International to use crowd-funding. Funded by sales of The International 2013 Interactive Compendium, the first of its kind, $2.50 of the proceeds from each bundle went towards the prize pool. After 98 days of fundraising, the Compendium had funded almost all of its “stretch goals,” save the final milestone at $3,200,000, which would have seen Compendium owners able to select the next hero shipped in Dota 2.
- The TI12 prize pool is set to be the lowest in a decade.
- The prize amount surpassed TI3 on Saturday.
- The historically short funding period leaves little room for improvement.
A decade later, TI12's Compendium has faced harsh criticism due to a lack of content, pay-walling existing features such as Fantasy, and lacking incentives to play games.
With a fundraising time-frame of just 32 days, the shortest in the history of The International, surpassing TI3’s prize pool is likely the last major milestone TI12’s prize will reach. The next smallest prize pool after TI3, was TI4, with $10,923,977. It is unlikely TI12’s prize pool reaches those lofty heights.
Should TI12’s prize pool fail to surpass any more records, it will be the fourth lowest prize pool in history of The International, and the second lowest crowd-funded prize.
The International has long been heralded as one of the most significant tournaments in esports, with its enormous prize pool drawing headlines for years. Even with the poor showing this year, The International 2023 will have one of the largest individual prize pool of any esports tournament on the calendar. Only Fortnite's Champion Series 2023 Global Championship will likely surpass it with a $4,000,000 prize pool.
In comparison, League of Legends’ 2023 World Championships has an expected prize pool of $2,225,000, although it hasn’t been formally announced. The ALGS 2023 Championship boasted a $2,000,000 prize, while CS:GO’s BLAST Paris Major 2023 had a $1,250,000 pool.
But for many Dota 2 fans and players, this will be no consolation. Some consider this the “death” of the game from a competitive standpoint. The Dota 2 scene for years was heavily weighted around TI and its enormous financial incentive. With the dissolution of DPC, and tournaments like Riyadh Masters now surpassing The International in prize pool, the importance of esports’ grandest prize is faltering.