Valve’s shocking decision to remove the Dota 2 Battle Pass is regarded as a positive change but it is clouded with doubts.
The Dota 2 Battle Pass comes once a year to celebrate the grand TI (The International) and has been an integral part of the Dota 2 community. Since its inception in 2013, the compendium which turned into the Battle Pass, continued to please fans all over the world with cosmetic rewards and in-game perks. However, Valve just announced that it is discontinuing the Battle Pass. With that, the publisher promises a healthier ecosystem that includes more robust updates and ideas.
"We're building a wide variety of features and content for the game, delivered in different ways. We'll still ship a range of cosmetics over the year, but we're also going to ship more diverse updates for all Dota players to enjoy," the Dota 2 blog spot reads.
"Work is well underway on a TI-themed update to ship in September. The update will still contribute directly to the prize pool, with a focus on the event, the players, and the games, but new cosmetic items won't play a notable part. This is a significant change from the last few years, so to make it clear that we're shifting focus towards the event and away from the giant reward line of cosmetics, we're intentionally not calling this update a Battle Pass."
The discontinuation of the Dota 2 Battle Pass is one of the most colossal changes in its history. So how did the community react to this decision?
The community reacts to the removal of Dota 2 Battle Pass
For many of the community, Valve's decision to discontinue the Battle Pass is certainly a step in the right direction. For ages, there have been strong voices against the concept of The International and the Battle Pass which absorbed too much resources and attention. This led to anything outside of TI becoming stagnant and dull for not only pro players but also the entire community.
Valve promising a stable ecosystem by sacrificing the Battle Pass sounds ideal for the long-term health of Dota 2. Caster, Alvaro "Avo+" Sanchez Velasco, expressed his hopes to see a "positive overhaul in the competitive scene to keep interest going."
Caster, Robson "TeaGuvnor" Merritt, acknowledged that this is a positive change. He would make his future "waiting room stream" a "TI Update waiting room".
Popular Dota 2 guide maker, Torte de Lini, expressed his excitement over the change. To him, the concept of Battle Pass overshadowed The International and took great commitment as well as resources.
"I personally felt [the Battle Pass] shadowed The International by lasting longer than the largest event in Dota history, how much commitment and resource it took from the Dota team and how much focus it drew from the community both before, during and after its event."
A big concern for The International's prize pool
Reasons to remove the Dota 2 Battle Pass are understandable, however, Valve is notorious for neglecting promises. While some of the community are hopeful, some are skeptical of what Valve can bring to justify this historical change.
Users pointed out that with additional resources, Valve could maintain both the Battle Pass and the development of the game. By cutting off one or the other, it seems like Valve is simply cutting costs.
While that is one of the main arguments, a lot of people in the community are more concerned about how this will affect TIs prize pool. A part of TI's significance has always been its boastful prize pools which were accumulated through the Battle Pass revenue. However, with the death of the Battle Pass, Dota 2's grand TI will likely suffer lesser prize money.
Team Liquid's coach, William "Blitz" Lee, shared his "mixed feelings" regarding the changes. He agrees with the idea but he is simultaneously concerned about TI's prize pool.
In a recent interview, Quinn "Quinn" Callahan also talked about the changes. He believes there are pros and cons and it just depends on how you view the situation. But his main worry is how the prize pool of TI is going to shape up.
"You can take it optimistically or pessimistically. I tend to view it as the latter. So I look at it like okay, [The International] prize pool is going to be like three [million] or something. They're releasing it in September, it's got less hats. I'm skeptical about this TI's prize pool because of this, but it could be good overall."
Despite the massive news, a lot of people are withholding judgement until they see what Valve delivers this coming September. All eyes are also peeled for the upcoming Dota 2 10-year anniversary.