January: The Bucharest Minor
New year, new throw. The match between Team Team and BOOM Esports went down as one of the weirdest games in competitive Dota. BOOM ID's creeps were right in the process of attacking the opponent's Ancient – but nanoseconds before they destroyed the building, BOOM ID called gg. The team was frustrated when they got eliminated in their own base and seemed to have forgotten their creeps were close to victory.
February: Torte De Lini ends his hero builds
For eight years, nearly all new players – and also more experienced ones – followed Torte De Lini's guide so they were not completely lost in the game. In February, the master of guides announced that he will no longer write guides.
Fortunately, he reconsidered his decision and now continues his helpful guides again.
About my @DOTA2 Hero Builds and its end:https://t.co/IDr1HHlaUi— Michael from the Bon Appetit Test Kitchen (@TorteDeLini) February 8, 2019
Thank you for being my friends and giving me a purpose. You've made this relatively ordinary person achieve something pretty extraordinary. pic.twitter.com/QCuWSrfns7
Mars was the first new hero to enter the Dota battlefields this year. Described as First Son of Heaven, he is the son of Zeus and has fought a seemingly endless amount of battles. The god of war now searches for a larger purpose in his fights, aiming to burn down the pantheon of the old age and build a new empire on top the ashes of his kin.
April: OpenAI > World Champions
MMR is just a number, robots is what matters. For the first time, artificial intelligence was able to defeat a top notch Dota 2 team: the world champions from OG. The two matches were not played in the usual ranked mode, but adjusted so the human players have a more realistic chance of winning. But OpenAI was plowning its way through OG.
May: Disneyland Major
A magical tournament: Dota returned to Paris and hosted the MDL Disneyland Paris Major.
Amer 'Miracle-' Al-Barkawi once again proved why he is considered to be the best player in the world by many. He achieved a Quad Rampage on Morphling. However, his bloodlust was not enough, Secret won the series and claimed the Major victory.
June: Dota Underlords
In June, the Dota universe got expanded: Dota Underlords heralded the next era of the rising genre of auto battlers. Since the launch of its predecessor Auto Chess by Drodo Studio, the game mode got extremely popular. Spin-offs from other games followed quickly, including League of Legends' Teamfight Tactics.
July: Wrath of Mo'rokai and Invoker Persona
The 2019 Battle Pass brought a few surprises, one of it being Wrath of the Mo’rokai. In the new game mode, players had to empower their Mo’rokai, a pair of monstrous beasts, by feeding them essences. The Mo'rokai then helped pushing lanes and conquering the enemy Ancient.
It also introduced the first Persona: Acolyte of the Lost Arts. Invoker can be played as his child version. While his spells and playstyle remain the same, he received completely new animations, voice lines, information on his backstory and more.
August: The International 2019
In August, OG wrote Dota 2 history - again. The reigning world champions were the first team ever to win an International two times. To exceed this outstanding result even more, they did so two times in a row. Since winning the The International 2019 back-to-back, OG does not only count as the best team Dota 2 team in the world, all their five players also lead the charts for the most prize money earned in esports across all games.
September: KuroKy leaves Liquid
Kuro S. 'KuroKy' Takhasomi and his Team Liquid reached a legendary status in Dota 2. In September, the five players decided to leave Liquid after several years to establish a brand-new organisation. A few months after their departure, they came back from silence and revealed their own project: Nigma.
With the announcement of @LiquidKuroKy and the team's departure from TL, they wanted to give a message to all the fans that have supported us through their journey. pic.twitter.com/aFvj29zSD9— Team Liquid (@TeamLiquid) September 13, 2019
October: Midas Mode
The beloved "meme tournament" Midas Mode 2: Sir Sadim's Revenge got its well-deserved sequel – but not without first having to face giant obstacles. Despite Jake 'SirActionSlacks' Kenner revealing the event's dates quite early, Valve crashed the timeslots with the Qualifiers for the first Minor and Major.
Fans were enraged and fought a bitter battle to change the dates. Army commander Slacks eventually managed to convince Valve to reschedule the Qualifiers and Midas Mode 2 could then peacefully take place. The tournament was a great success, Gabe Newell himself had some words to say and legendary rosters were accumulated, such as TI1-Natus Vincere and TI3-Alliance.
November: Outlanders Update
With patch 7.23, aka the Outlanders Update, Dota 2 seemed to turn into a brand new game, Dota 3. The changes were massive: two new heroes, a completely new building with the Outposts, 62 new items dropped by Neutrals, level 30 cap, couriers for all and so on.
There were so many chances, Kevin 'Purge' Godec spend over 9 hours for his first impression video.
December: TI10 announcement
Christmas came early this year: Valve announced the dates for The International 2020! The next World Championship will take place from Aug 18th-23rd in Stockholm, Sweden. Fans have often been asking for earlier dates and this year, Valve complied with the wishes. It is now left to hope that they will also include the demand to let Basshunter play live on stage.
What was your highlight of 2019?
Photo credit: MoonduckTV, Valve, Nigma