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Published: July 8, 2021

Written by: Barney


  • Valve has found a new venue for The International after Bucharest agreed to host the event
  • TI 10 will be held in October and feature ten days of competitive play in the Romanian capital 
  • Visa restrictions continue to be a major hurdle for many esports tournaments and organizations 

Data 2’s final event, The International, will be played in Bucharest, Romania after organizational issues cropped up in Sweden.

Romania to Welcome TI 10 in October 

After the Swedish Sports Federation shut the doors on hosting The International in the country, Valve had to look quickly for a new venue, and it has found one. The International will be played in Bucharest, Romania which hosted one of the significant events in the Dota Pro Circuit, the Bucharest Minor.

The company has revealed that it has set a date for October, meaning that Eastern Europe is getting way more action, and people in the region will have an event of significant magnitude to attend. 

With Sweden failing to recognize esports as a sport, this meant that should Valve have continued with Sweden, many players outside of the European Union would simply not have been able to attend due to visa problems. Or, they would have faced significant problems.

The event will host a group stage format which will be played from October 7 through October 10, with the main stage taking place on October 12 and the finals planned for October 17. In other words, we are looking at ten days of competitive gaming.

Valve was grateful to have been able to pick an alternate destination for its event, and while Bucharest may not be the first spot that comes to mind, the city is well-connected and can cater to a global audience easily. 

A Fresh Venue for The International Event 

“We are grateful for the partnership we have formed with Romania and the city of Bucharest, and very much look forward to gathering with the global Dota 2 community, both in-person and virtually, to celebrate the elite players and amazing fandom at The International. Prepare yourselves,” Valve’s statement said. 

The upcoming event is no modest affair either, with $40 million allocated as prize money, the biggest Dota 2 Final has offered to date. The winning team is set to win 45% of the total prize pool or $18.2 million. 

Visa problems continue to be a persistent disruptor in the competitive gaming space. We recently published a detailed blog post as to why we believe esports should be considered a sport, citing as one of our arguments the fact that without official recognition, many teams struggle to get their players on-site. 

This time Valve had a plan B, but the day may come when players or organizations are hindered by a dated perception of esports, which could harm the ecosystem, stakeholders, and communities.  

Earlier this year, WePlay had to organize private jets to fly in Chinese teams for the WePlay AniMajor in Ukraine. 

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