Dota 2 Live Streams
As esports continues to grow ever more rapidly, with an audience of millions worldwide now following the fortunes of their favourite teams and players, so does the number of people who want to watch live streams of events and tournaments. Here, we will take a look at how fans can find streams of Dota 2 events, and which sites provide spectators with the best overall service.
How to watch Dota2 live
If you are unfamiliar with Dota 2, the action can look confusing at first glance, especially if you are new to the concept of esports generally. Nevertheless, the game is simple enough in overall structure, and is not hard to follow once you’re familiar with a few basics.
At its most basic level, Dota 2 is a competitive action role-playing game, in which two teams of five players struggle to destroy the other team’s home base, which is called an ‘Ancient’ (hence the acronym for the game’s original title: Defense of the Ancients).
The game uses World of Warcraft lore, and each match takes place on the same map. The matches have no time limit, though anything lasting longer than about 45 minutes can be considered an ‘epic’ contest. The vast majority of professional matches last around 35-40 minutes. Each player on the team controls a specific character, or ‘hero’, which is chosen from a list of a 111. No other player in the match can use that character. Players receive experience points and gold for achieving certain feats, most commonly killing AI-controlled characters on the map, or heroes from the other team.
Draft to glory
Players must ‘draft’ their heroes before a match starts, and the process of the draft can become a highly competitive game-within-a-game. Teams take it in turns to ‘ban’ certain heroes from being drafted. This means that during the draft, each team is trying to plot and scheme to ensure that the opponents’ game line-up is kept as weak as possible. The draft can play a key part in shaping the outcome of a match, and it is not uncommon for losing teams to blame their draft for the ultimate defeat.
Heroes unlock abilities as they level up during the game, which occurs as a result of acquiring gold and experience. The pace of this levelling up increases to a frenzy as the game progresses, and can add real drama to the closing stages of contests.
Reddit remains a good source of additional information when it comes to watching Dota 2. There is a large and committed esports fan base which uses the site to communicate about the latest happenings in the world of Dota 2 and other esports disciplines, and any newcomers to the scene would be wise to check it out. As well as discussion about players and teams, users can find plenty of additional help when it comes to gaming technology, and how to access the best streams for watching Dota 2.
The best streaming services out there
There are a number of streaming services which fans can use to watch Dota 2 live streams. Many of these websites also have an archive of past matches, which can also be enjoyable to tune into, especially if spectators want to find out more about up-and-coming players or teams who are unfamiliar to them.
Perhaps the best known esports streaming service is Twitch, an organisation which has partnerships with a number of esports teams, across many disciplines. It is owned by Twitch Interactive, which is a subsidiary of Amazon.com, an indication of the kind of commercial heft that the site possesses. Users at Twitch can access a vast amount of esports content, and offers a huge range of Dota 2 streams, both archived and live.
Twitch reigns supreme
Twitch has been purposely designed as a platform for esports viewing, which gives it an advantage over many of its rivals. Despite this, it has, in recent years, branched out into offering music videos and other content, alongside its esports content. As well as streams of Dota 2 matches, users can also tune into talk shows, punditry and other esports content, giving Twitch an all-round depth which few of its rivals can currently match.
The internet’s most iconic streaming service is, of course, YouTube, and it is possible for users to watch streams of some Dota 2 matches on the site. Dota 2 has its own official channel on the site, where esports fans can watch interviews and other content along with coverage of matches and tournaments. Accessible and simple to use, YouTube’s general popularity mean that it is probably the site where many esports experienced their first live stream of an event.
If all else fails…
Another option for esports fans who want to watch Dota 2 live streams of tournament matches and other events is to use the official Dota 2 website. Users who visit the site will find that there is now a whole section devoted to streams of matches. Fans can are given a choice of live games when they click on the ‘live’ section on the site’s home page. It is then pretty simple to navigate to the match of their choice. The advantage of using the official Dota 2 site is that it is fully up to date with all the latest Dota 2 events, and has plenty of officially sanctioned supporting content, making it a welcoming all-round experience for the more general esports fan.
If a user has downloaded the actual Dota 2 game, then there is also an option to watch live streams ‘in game’. This opens up a whole heap of new possibilities which add to the spectator experience. It can be a much immersive experience, bringing the viewer new perspectives on the action, and replicating the feeling of watching the game live at a venue.
In addition to these options, a number of other streaming services exist which are designed to primarily cater for viewers in Asian countries, especially China. One of these is Huya.com, which has a professional looking, very slick interface, and high quality streams.
Users who are not of Chinese nationality may find it tricky to use, however, as almost all text on the site is written in Chinese. A similar site to Huya is Douyu.com, which is also focused on the Asian audience, and has all its accompanying text in Chinese.
One site which European viewers may prefer is SonicBox, which has emerged in 2017. This site seems to mainly feature gamers’ personal channels, and can be quite varied in terms of the quality of its content. Nevertheless, users can find streams of Dota 2 matches there.
Another, perhaps better, option is Hitbox, which merged with its rival Azubu in 2017. This site features streams of many esports events, including Dota 2 matches, and has a useful schedule of its offerings organised according to tournament. This makes it accessible and straightforward to use for the newcomer to esports.
Overview of live Dota 2 events over the year
The Dota 2 calendar is becoming busier every year as the numbers of fans following and playing the game continue to grow. Some Dota 2 tournaments now carry huge prize pots, and most of the top esports organisations run Dota 2 teams, which are often staffed by iconic players. Here at Dota2betting.live we like to keep our readers updated with as much information as possible about Dota 2 tournaments.
The Major series of premier tier tournaments continues to offer some of the most lucrative prize pools in esports. The Kiev Major took place in April 2017, with its first prize of $1 million being won by OG. All the most famous teams in Dota 2 struggle to achieve qualification for the Majors.
Road to the international
Another tournament which attracts massive attention in the world of Dota 2 is The International, which has taken place on an annual basis since 2011, and is held in Seattle. Wings Gaming took first place in the 2016 edition of the tournament, taking home a staggering total of $9,139,002 in winnings.
The StarLadder i-League Dota 2 Invitation Season 2 is also set to take place in 2017, building on the previous edition of the tournament. Taking place in Shanghai in May, eight teams will battle for a total prize pot of $100,000, with $45,000 going to the winner. The first edition of this tournament took place in 2016, in Kiev, and Vici Gaming Reborn were the winners, with Natus Vincere in second place.
The StarLadder i-League StarSeries is another series of events which takes place throughout the year. The Season 3 version was won in 2017 by Team Liquid, who won £135,000, and beat Team VGJ in the final, by a score of 3-1. TNC Pro Team and OG finished in third and fourth place.
Other events which are set to take place throughout 2017 include the Dota Summit, the EPICENTER 2017, the Zotac Cup Masters and the ESL One Hamburg.
All these tournaments are streamed live, guaranteeing fans a ringside side for all the action. Hopefully, the information here can help all Dota 2 fans find a way to watch their favourite players in action.