DPC 2021: All You Need To Know

Jan 05 2021 5 min read

DPC 2021: All you need to know and all there is at the moment

Yes, the road to The International 10 in Stockholm has begun. Valve officially confirmed that on New Year's eve (ha-ha, thanks for the gift), but there are some facts that might have been overlooked or missed. Let's dive in and try to understand what we currently know and have for the already-started DPC 2021 season. 

The main part of the DPC starts in the second half of January.

DPC 2021: Majors and TOs

This year, Valve decided to have six regional TOs to hold the tournaments. Of course, all the online leagues will end up in Majors, and here's what we know about the TOs:

  1. Europe: Dreamhack
  2. CIS: ESL
  3. China: Perfect World
  4. SEA: PGL
  5. NA: BTS
  6. SA: Dotapit

Valve plans three huge tournaments in 2021. Two Majors and The International, which will take place in Stockholm in August. The start of the majors is scheduled for March 25 and June 2. It is not yet 100% known who will hold the Majors. 

The teams will have to fight for their places at Majors (excluding those who were invited directly) through regional leagues. Their system, in general, coincides with the announcement that Valve made back in February 2020. Each of the six main regions has two divisions, Upper and Lower ones, with eight teams each. At the end of the season, the two worst teams in the Upper Division are relegated to the Lower Division, and the two strongest teams from the Lower Division take a step up. Teams from the last places in the Lower Division are eliminated from the league.

The top two to four top-division teams (depending on the region) receive slots for the Major. The final stage in the league also determines the stage of the Major, with which the team will begin to fight for the title of the champion of the tournament.

Distribution of slots by region:

  • Europe: Top 4 teams
  • China: Top 4 teams
  • Southeast Asia: Top 3 Teams
  • CIS: Top 3 Teams
  • North America: Top 2 Teams
  • South America: Top 2 Teams

Also, a team from Open Qualifiers can't reach the Upped Div because the system wants TOs to invite teams to Closed Quals. Only in North America, people can get there just because there weren't enough teams to get invites to Closed Quals. That is, teamless SumaiL and No[o]ne can miss the Major?

Moreover, Valve announced that they are canceling TI Open Quals (back when they told us about regional leagues in February 2020 though). There were no clear statements in the recent announcement, but v1lat confirmed it on his Telegram Blog.

DPC 2021: Teams Invited

With the system being re-worked almost from scratch, people might get confused. So, we made a list of all teams that have received an invite to the Top Division of the regional leagues of the DPC season 2021. As a bonus, check out the players who were registered for the teams.

Invited Teams DPC 2021


Team Players
Team Liquid miCKe, qojqva, Boxi, Taiga, iNSaNia
OG MidOne, Topson, Ceb, Saksa, N0tail
Team Secret MATUMBAMAN, Nisha, zai, YapzOr, Puppey
Nigma Miracle, w33, Mind_Control, GH, KuroKy


Note #1: VP's epileptick1d and Ilias have changed their nicknames to Nightfall and Kingslayer.

Not #2: Team Spirit signed Yellow Submarine.

Team Players
Virtus.pro Nightfall, gpk, DM, Save-, Kingslayer
NAVI V-Tune, Iceberg, GeneraL, Rodjer, ALWAYSWANNAFLY
Team Spirit Yatoro, TORONTOTOKYO, Collapse, so bad, Miposhka
Live to Win Dream, fn, Afterlife, Immersion, SonneikO


Note: 23Savage left VG without playing a single game since the org signed him in mid-September. 

Team Players
Vici Gaming Erica, Ori, old eLeVeN, Pyw, Dy
Elephant Eurus, Somnus丶M, Yang, fy, RedPanda
PSG.LGD Ame, NothingToSay, Faith_bian, XinQ, y`
EHOME Sccc, Xm, Chalice, Fade, xNova

Southeast Asia

Note: It's T1's first-ever DPC tournament.

Team Players
TNC Predator Gabbi, Armel, kpii, Tims, Febby
T1 JaCkky, Karl, Kuku, Xepher, Whitemon
Neon Esports Natsumi-, Yopaj, PlayHard, skem, Jaunuel
BOOM Esports Drew, Mikoto, Fbz, Hyde, Khezcute
Fnatic Raven, Moon, Masaros, Jabz, DJ

North America

PPD returns to competitive Dota with Sadbois: including Fear and a 17-years-old midlaner

Team Players
Quincy Crew YawaR, Quinn, Lelis, MSS, SVG
Evil Geniuses Arteezy, Abed, iceiceice, Cr1t-, Fly
Sadbois Sammyboy, Gunnar, Brax, Oceania, Husky
4 Zoomers Fear, dnm, Moo, Sneyking, ppd

South America

Note: Astini and his comrades moved to Ukraine to join B8 and Dendi.

Team Players
SG e-sports Costabile, 4dr, kingrd, thiolicor, KJ
Thunder Predator Mnz, Leostyle-, Frank, MoOz, Mjz
Infamous Pakazs, Mr. Jeans, Papita, Michael, Accel
Beastcoast K1, Chris Luck, Wisper, Scofield, Stinger

DPC 2021: Closed Qualifiers

All the teams we mentioned above are those who will get to the tournaments straight away, but there are also rosters who will have to fight their way through the Closed Qualifiers. Here's the list.

EU Closed Quals Teams

  • Alliance, Vikin.gg, Mudgolems, Chicken Fighters, Spider Pigzs, Brame, 5men, and Hippomaniacs.

CIS Closed Quals Teams

  • No Pangolier, No Techies, B8, Gambit Esports, Team Empire, HellRaisers, EXTREMUM, Winstrike.

China Closed Quals Teams

  • Dalanjing Gaming, Phoenix Rising, Royal Never Give Up, Team Aster, Team Magma, LBZS, Invictus Gaming, Sparking Arrow Gaming

SEA Closed Quals Teams

  • 496 Gaming, SMG, Execration, Omega Esports, Vice, Galaxy Racers, Cignal Ultra

North America Closed Quals Teams

  • Black N Yellow, Undying, 5ManMidas, Doze Reborn

South America Closed Quals Teams

  • Omega Gaming, Team Unknown, Hokori, Incubus Club, Crewmates, Ego Boys, Infinity Esports, Latam Defenders

But the community seems to be not very pleased with the way Valve do their job and the ideas of this year's DPC system. For example, Noxville was mad:

Ben Steenhuisen's Opinion about DPC

And Loda also had some questions on how invites were given:

Overall, Noxville and all other speakers out there have their points. Valve has made some strange moves with the new ecosystem, and from distance it seems that they are just closing the higher league to the max, leaving all other teams almost no chance to fulfill the dreams. 

But there's a good point also: since Valve wouldn't care about low-tier teams, there might be a bunch of non-official tournaments that can help the scene outside DPC to survive. It's the opposite meaning of a fly in the ointment because even with the Newbee '322' lifelong ban, smaller teams will provide a lot of match-fixing. 

The DPC Qualifiers have already begun: Neon Esports at SEA has got to the Upper Division, but the other regions mostly start today. The DPC League itself starts on January, 18th. 


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