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True Sight: The Kiev Major Grand Finals

An all-new episode of True Sight is now available, and all fans are invited to venture backstage with Team OG and Virtus.pro as they battle through the best-of-five Grand Finals at The Kiev Major.

With a level of all-access coverage that follows the contenders all the way from the ready rooms directly into the tournament booths, you’ll gain new insights into the battle of wits that occurs as two of the top teams in the world face the gamesmanship of the draft, endure the ebb and flow of the fight for the Ancients, and regroup with coaches and teammates in the aftermath of both victory and defeat.

While you may already know who reigns supreme, as you witness the journey undertaken to seize the Mystic Staff, you’ll see that not all has yet been revealed.


Exclusive Io Arcana

Some fans may have noticed that Io was not included in this year’s Arcana vote—indeed, we removed the wispy Fundamental from the selection process for pressing ceremonial concerns. But Io’s influence reaches into the very fabric of the Dota universe itself, and many astute fans found they could still hear the comforting sounds of Io’s benevolence seeping through the stream of rewards by clicking on the blank space at Battle Level 245. With today’s update, however, Io has at last relocated directly into the line of level rewards to unveil an all-new Arcana.

After seeing Io float away with a second-place finish in last year’s hotly-contested final round, we decided this year that the wisp deserved to skip the vote and select its own favored form. And what a heart-warming form it is! Now available to all Battle Pass owners who surpass level 245, the Benevolent Companion Arcana imbues Io with the form and function of the best friend anyone could ask for.

Featuring new animations, custom ability effects, custom sounds, and a special death effect, this exclusive Arcana can be obtained by reaching level 245 in The International 2017 Battle Pass, and—much like the Kunkka Prestige item at level 225—will not be available to market or trade. Don’t miss out—make sure to level up your Battle Pass before the end of The International to claim yours. Then take heart, all ye who unlock this reward, for Io knows that no matter where the tide of battle leads you, the bonds of friendship will always carry the day.


Gameplay Patch – 7.06

Today’s patch introduces the 7.06 Gameplay Update, which focuses mainly on adjustments to general gameplay mechanics. Featuring changes to denies, lanes, shrines, and more, there are a host of details to check out before your next match. Head to the 7.06 Gameplay Update page for a full list of changes.


The International 2017 Battle Pass

The International Battle Pass has arrived. With cargo holds brimming full of new and classic features, an all-new multiplayer campaign, and a host of exclusive rewards, this Battle Pass will leave you swimming in treasure as we sail through The International season towards the biggest tournament of the year. Plus, with 25% of all Battle Pass sales going directly to The International 2017 prize pool, just where the final tally ends up depends on you.

Befitting the crown jewel of the Dota 2 championship circuit, The International Battle Pass boasts a haul of new Immortal Treasures to open, an infusion of new features, heaps of Level Rewards to earn, and even a Dark Reef terrain to explore. Indeed, for those who push their Battle Levels to the greatest heights, the gallery of rewards stretches nearly as far as the eye can see.

Check out The International 2017 Battle Pass website for more information, including details on Immortal Treasures, Queue Trivia, MMR Double Down, Chat Wheel Sounds, The International 2017 Compendium, and much more.


The Kiev Major Champions

Congratulations to OG for claiming the Mystic Staff trophy to win their fourth Dota 2 Major Championship crown.

OG’s path through the Main Event bracket was forged with hard-fought victories over three stalwart teams. Managing to fend off a rally by Team Random and beat back early aggression by Team Faceless for a pair of 2-1 victories, OG then outlasted a resilient EG squad in two lengthy matches for a 2-0 series win and a berth in the Grand Finals.

Facing crowd favorite Virtus Pro in the best-of-five decider, OG jumped to an early one-game lead before dropping two straight matches to find themselves on the brink of elimination. Responding with a victory in game four, they set up only the second game-five deciding match in Major Championship circuit history.

Despite stellar play by Virtus Pro to grab an early advantage in the final match, OG held on to recover en route to another trip to the winner’s circle. As the only team with multiple Major Championship victories, the only prize OG has yet to claim is The International itself.

With The Kiev Major now complete, we would like to thank all of the participating teams and fans in Kiev, and all of the fans around the world who tuned in to watch the action unfold. We look forward to welcoming teams and fans alike to The International on August 7 – 12 in Seattle.

In preparation for the next event, team rosters have been unlocked, and players are now able to manage their team affiliations. Teams have the opportunity to drop players until May 16, 12:00 a.m. PDT, and add players to their roster from that moment until May 24 12:00 a.m. PDT. From that point, rosters will remain locked until the conclusion of The International.


Matchmaking Update

Today’s update focuses on improving the matchmaking experience with the restoration of Solo Queue, the addition of Phone Linking, and multiple other adjustments.

Quality matchmaking is a core component of an enjoyable Dota session, and today’s changes work to address several issues that can affect the player experience when queuing for a game.

LINKED PHONE NUMBER

The first major change is that players must register a unique phone number to their account in order to queue for Ranked matches.

Players using multiple accounts create a negative matchmaking experience at all skill brackets, so our goal is to add just enough friction to this process that the number of players doing this will be noticeably reduced. Having more players using their primary accounts will have a positive effect on both Ranked and Unranked Matchmaking.

There will be a two-week grace period from today during which players have time to register a number, but starting on May 4th, accounts without a registered number will no longer be eligible for Ranked play. If a phone number is removed from an account after registration, a new number can be added, but there will be a three-month waiting period before the removed number can be registered on a new account. This is to prevent using the same number on multiple accounts. Online services that provide phone numbers are not allowed.

SOLO QUEUE

With the return of the Solo Queue, solo players who enter Ranked Matchmaking can now choose to be matched only with other solo players. Any player who selects this option will be placed into matches where all ten players are queuing solo.

PARTY CHANGES

Starting today, if a player’s Solo MMR is higher than their Party MMR, queuing in a party will result in the matchmaker assigning a higher MMR to that player. Effectively, these players will search for a match as if their MMR were halfway between the Solo and Party MMR values.

While the current Party MMR number generally reflects the likelihood that you’ll win a given match correctly, we’ve found that when a Solo MMR is dramatically higher than a Party MMR, the match becomes extremely volatile, resulting in an unpleasant and uncompetitive experience for both teams.

Simply having an even chance to win over the long run does not necessarily correlate to having competitive matches, but this change will make it so the matchmaker is able to take into account both the party teamwork skill component and the individual capability of the players on both teams. With both teams having this same mechanic applied to them, the chance for each team to win over a large sample will still be the same as before, but with reduced volatility on a per-match basis.

MATCHMAKING BEHAVIOR

This update also includes several changes intended to remove undesirable behavior from the matchmaking pool.

First, being marked for low-priority matches now results in a duration-based ban from the Ranked queue, in addition to the current game-count-based low priority requirement. The ban will start at a low threshold of a few hours, and increase up to four days for players who are very frequently in low priority.

Next, it should go without saying that while the wide variety of playstyles that Dota players bring to a given match will always be welcome, intentionally ruining games for other players is never condoned. To help address concerns in this area, we’ve also added better detection for clear cases of intentional feeding, and will be applying stricter punishments to those who violate this rule.

Finally, we’ve also added detection for users that are botting, and with this update have issued a permanent ban to a large number of recently-detected bot accounts. This should help resolve several areas in which these bot accounts have a negative effect on the experience of the Dota community.

REGIONAL CHANGES

Ranked Matchmaking will no longer be available in South Africa, India, and Dubai. We will update these servers as the unranked populations in these regions grow to the critical mass needed to be able to support splitting the user base into Ranked and Unranked queues.

While there are some players that used these servers for Ranked, the low populations made them prime targets for various Ranked Matchmaking abuses. For the time being, players in these regions will need to join Ranked Matchmaking queues in one of the other nearby supported servers.