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The International 2023: Here are all the teams and favorites

Dota 2 players competing at The International.

With the qualifiers now complete, the teams competing at The International 2023 have been officially decided.

While much of the TI12 field was established during the Bali Major, eight more teams earned a spot through regional qualifiers. This finalizes the lineup of 20 teams and lets fans know who they can look forward to seeing in Seattle. Unlike most recent installments of The International, there was an uneven number of event invitations distributed among the six regions.

South America and Europe received two invitations apiece while North America, China, Southeast Asia, and CIS only received one. No explanation was given for why South America and Europe were given this treatment. Here are the 20 teams set to compete at The International 2023.

tundra esports winning the international 2022

Full list of teams competing at The International 2023

Team Liquid, Evil Geniuses, Tundra Esports, and TSM are among the teams competing at The International 2023. 12 teams earned a spot in the event through the Dota Pro Circuit’s regional leagues and majors. Here are the teams, and their place in the final standings:

  • Team Liquid
  • Gaimin Gladiators
  • Tundra Esports
  • 9Pandas
  • Evil Geniuses
  • PSG.LGD
  • Shopify Rebellion
  • Talon Esports
  • Beastcoast
  • Team Spirit
  • TSM
  • BetBoom Team

This DPC season was unique in how lopsided the competition was. Gaimin Gladiators took first place in all three majors while Team Liquid came in second, with the pair standing far above the rest of the pack in terms of qualification points. 

9Pandas, Evil Geniuses, and PSG.LGD all combined dominant results at the regional level with solid results in majors. Most of the other teams combined regional dominance with some level of success in majors. TSM and BetBoom managed to rank among the invited TI12 teams through their regional league results alone. Few teams stand as notable omissions from the list of invitees, save China’s Azure Ray and Europe’s Team Quest who posted strong showings in the Bali Major. 

These are the teams who won their way into The International 2023 via the regional qualifiers:

  • nouns
  • Keyd Stars
  • Thunder Awaken
  • Azure Ray
  • Virtus.pro
  • Team SMG
  • Entity
  • Quest Esports

The qualifier results were a mix of surprises and slam dunks.

In terms of the less-surprising outcomes, nouns was cemented as the third-best team in North America throughout the season and had little difficulty securing a spot with Shopify Rebellion and TSM already qualified. Azure Ray maintained the momentum it gathered late in the season and sealed the deal despite facing stiff competition. In Europe, Quest Esports maintained the momentum it gathered at the Bali Major to qualify for TI12.

Not everything played out as expected, though. Entity got back into early-season form by storming through the European qualifiers. The overhauled Team SMG looked strong in its first outing and managed to beat out the better-positioned Execration and Bleed Esports. Finally, Keyd Stars exploded out of division two of the South America league to head to TI12 alongside Thunder Awaken.

Which team is the favorite to win The International 2023?

Team Liquid, Gaimin Gladiators, Tundra Esports, 9Pandas, and Team Spirit stand as the favorites to win The International 2023. Odds have not yet been officially revealed so it’s unknown how they will be ordered, but these each have a strong claim for favorite status.

Gaimin Gladiators wins 2023 Bali Major

The 2023 Dota Pro Circuit was defined by European dominance. Every major this season was ended with a showdown between Team Liquid and Gaimin Gladiators. Gaimin Gladiators took the victory each time. Defending The International 2022 champions Tundra Esports also had a good season, qualifying for all three majors by placing top three in each European DPC league tour and placing third and fifth in the Bali Major and Berlin Major, respectively.

The CIS region hasn’t been without its successes, however. 9Pandas overcame an ugly first tour to the season to take top-six finishes in both the Berlin Major and Bali Major. Team Spirit qualified for all three majors but failed to earn any points. That said, a first-place finish at Riyadh Masters 2023 suggests Team Spirit could be primed for a strong showing at The International 2023.

Which underdog teams could win TI12?

PSG.LGD, Azure Ray, and Shopify Rebellion rank among the strongest underdog teams at TI12

One of the biggest storylines of the 2023 DPC season was how underwhelming China looked as a whole. The best performance by a Chinese team in a major was a top-six showing by PSG.LGD in the Berlin Major. While that’s unusual, there’s no denying the talent or experience of either PSG.LGD or Azure Ray. If they can get a good read on the meta, they could easily make a strong run to victory.

psg.lgd winning dreamleague

Shopify Rebellion once again stood atop North American Dota 2 in 2023, but didn’t enjoy much success internationally. Its best performance was a fourth-place showing in the Lima Major, but past that the team is skidding into The International with underwhelming showings in the Bali Major, DreamLeague Season 20 and Riyadh Masters 2023. The team has limped into the event before and managed to turn in surprisingly strong performances, and is worth Hail Mary consideration for doing so this year as well.

Will there be a TI12 Battle Pass?

The International 2023 will not have a battle pass. Instead, Dota 2 is set to have an update in September ahead of the event that will tie into the event. 

In June, Valve effectively stated that the TI Battle Pass had grown to be too large in its scope for both players and the company. This set up the announcement that there would be no TI12 Battle Pass.

“The nature of the Battle Pass is such that it could grow to encompass just about any content we produce for Dota over the year. And, over the last few years, it did. Battle Pass season has grown to be a tremendously exciting time in Dota, but it leaves the rest of the year feeling barren by comparison,” Valve said on the official Dota 2 website.

the international battle pass

The International 2022 drew significant backlash from fans as organizer PGL incorporated sponsors into the event. Alongside this, the company adjusted the scheduling of the TI11 Battle Pass in a way that let it keep more of the revenue. Multiple individuals within Dota 2 esports publicly speculated that this was indicative of Valve walking away from the competitive side of the game.

Valve stated that it is working on securing a venue for The International 2024 and that The International 2023 will have an in-game component. It’s unknown what this will be, but the traditional fantasy mini-game and predictions returning is the most likely scenario. Selling fantasy cards that give The International 2023 teams extra money is also possible.

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Written by Steven Rondina

Steven Rondina has been playing video games since he was a toddler and appreciates every genre out there. He has earned the platinum trophy in every Soulsborne game, is regularly Master Ball-ranked on the competitive Pokemon ladder, and has spent thousands of hours missing shots on Dust 2. His work has previously been featured by Bleacher Report and The Washington Post, and he was an Assistant Editor at WIN.gg. You can follow him on Twitter / X at @srondina.

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