The International is that time of the year where the community, players and Valve, all revel in unison for the crown jewel of Dota 2. Not to mention - the mother of all esports events across the globe.
The community unites to witness a spectacle, players unite to play in the spectacle and Valve rejoices in the extravagant amount of moolah in their kitty.
A tournament boasting $40,000,000+ in prize-money might seem like a lot but the reality is, that only 1/4 of the total money raised by the community via purchasing the TI Battle Pass goes towards it, while 3/4 of the money is pocketed by Valve.
A simple math equation in front of you!
The only saving grace is that 25% of the amount is contributed directly towards funding the prize-pool, which keeps on growing year after year.
How generous of them.
Well, Valve certainly knows how to take advantage of this emotion and hits the ball out of the park every single time.
*Enter Nemestice Battle Pass*
Valve further augmented their empty purses by announcing the Nemestice event along with a battle pass. More money for our almighty lord Gaben and for The Inte.. wait something’s not right!
The proceedings from the Nemestice Battle Pass aren't going towards TI nor towards the DPC or the tier 2/3 scene.
Then where is the money going? That’s right.. In Valve’s already deep pockets!
Source: Robyn Beck
To make things more interesting, this is just the first offering in this year’s cadence of events as they are planning a second battle pass later this year. Always nice of them to make stuff all for us out of the kindness of their hearts.
Maybe, the scene will get some inflow of the change fallen from Valve’s gorged kitty. Or, more likely, it won’t.
While TI continues to grow in prize pool, the prize money outside of TI continues to shrink -- from million dollar Majors 5 or 6 times a year, to half a million dollar Majors twice a year.
If you look at the competitive scene, excluding TI, for the past few years, the total financial pie has decreased every year.
This in itself should speak volumes.
It’s not Valve’s fault for wanting to milk more money from a cash cow. They are a business, and money is their God.
Our passion is our weakness, one that Valve knows extremely well how to make use of. They bank on our emotions while we bank on our passion.
Scene outside of TI shrinks, all the while making the rich richer.
Ultimately, the fault lies in our stars.