Saturday, 2 Mar 2024

Esports fights back at COVID-19, Dota Patch 7.25 analyses… and more esports stories from the week

Did you miss anything from the last week in esports? Swamped with your Steam backlog, because now you can’t go out and have all the time to play these games you bought on sale once and never even looked at? VPEsports’ Stories from the Week brings you all the biggest headlines you might have missed.

Patch 7.25: All analyses you need to read

On March 17, Icefrog released Dota 2 Patch 7.25 with changes to almost every hero, many of the items, gold mechanics, and more. Taking in the patch all at once is quite difficult, so we’ve published a number of analyses to guide you through how Dota 2 has changed with 7.25:

  • Gold mechanics simplified — how do the new Kill Gold mechanics compared to the old ones
  • The big winners of 7.25 — a look at 13 heroes that gained the most from the recent patch
  • New and reworked Aghanim’s Scepter ratings — a look at how new Agh’s has changed the abilities of nine heroes

WeSave! Charity tournament about to hit final stretch goal

As the DPC circuit went on a break over coronavirus concerns, WePlay! have set up a 24-team invitational tournament, whose prize pool and donations will all go to charities battling COVID-19. And three days before the end of the tournament, the community donations have almost unlocked the final stretch goal.

In a short time, by yesterday Dota 2 fans had added more than $40,000 to the starting $120,000 pool unlock an EU vs. CIS Final and a 3v3 NA All-Star match as stretch goals. Today, the prize pool is up to $180,000, unlocking a best-of-5 format for the Finals and building towards the final stretch goal of $200,000.

Chinese Dota 2 teams form a league as COVID-19 continues to spread

Meanwhile in China, eight of the biggest local Dota 2 teams gathered to form the Chinese DOTA 2 Professional Association (CDA). The CDA will work with its members to arrange league tournaments during the DPC hiatus so that the teams stay in form. Schedule and streaming dates for this online league to be announced soon.

ESL Rio Major postponed to November

After FLASHPOINT and ESL Pro League got transferred to an online format, CS:GO esports suffered its biggest hit yet from the coronavirus outbreak — the postponement of the ESL Rio Major.

ESL confirmed Monday that the Rio Major will be held in November instead of May, as planned, meaning that there will be only one CS:GO Major in 2020. As a result, Rio’s prize pool will be doubled to $2M and ESL and Valve will work on redoing the invitations and qualifiers for the Major, accommodating the unusual gap period of over a year between the Berlin and Rio Majors.

Astralis sign es3tag, Heroic/FPX deal might fall apart

Danish super-team Astralis moved to sign Patrick “es3tag” Hansen, previously of Heroic. Es3tag will serve as Astralis’ sixth in future tournaments, being swapped in and out based on coach’s decision.

Apart from leaving Heroic a man short, this causes much larger issues for es3tag’s former team. Heroic’s roster was to be purchased by FunPlus Phoenix, one of the founding members of FLASHPOINT, but now the Chinese org doesn’t have a full team to acquire. The deal, which reportedly was never set in stone, is now likely to fall apart, leaving questions about FPX’s involvement in FLASHPOINT and CS:GO as a whole.

The LCK resumes March 25

After LPL, LEC, and LCS all resumed active play, albeit online, the LCK is also set to resume later this month, March 25. Korea’s premier League of Legends tournament will also adopt an online format with five game days a week, many of which will feature three matches per day.

The LCK Spring Season is to end April 16, with playoffs to follow.

Lux/Heimerdinger decks take over Patch 0.9.2 meta

Legends of Runeterra Patch 0.9.2 brought a basket of changes to the game, and with that came a new meta. In the wake of the patch, a new control deck has risen as one of the lists to beat — a greedy Lux/Heimerdinger control.

The deck is complicated, but rewarding to play, requiring precise usage of the vast spells arsenal. It has hit high Master multiple times at the hands of pros and streamers, and it’s a great way to climb the ladder.

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