EPICENTER XL started in Moscow this week with 12 teams battling for DPC points. Team Liquid have the chance to defend their championship title for the third year in a row, finally scoring a Major victory and guaranteeing their TI8 attendance. PSG.LGD and Mineski can solidify their position in DPC rankings with a top4 placement, while Na'Vi will require to get the first place at the tournament to return to top8.
Last Thursday a massive patch was released to Dota, introducing Techies to the Captain's Mode and substantially changing the balance of the game. So far the changes seem to be on point, with Epicenter meta showing considerable signs of progress in its opening matches in terms of hero diversity.
Not everyone is happy about patches being released this close to the start of the tournament, however, with many professional players and coaches expressing their dissatisfaction with the new system.
Qualifiers for the last Majors of the season are over. MDL Changsha, ESL One Birmingham and China Supermajor all have their participants ready to battle for the last chance to get into top8.
SA, NA and SEA qualifiers were particularly interesting: Pain Gaming managed to qualify for ESL One Birmingham, while Infamous took the SA qualifier spot in China Supermajor. Optic Gaming will participate in the UK tournament, but lost the chance to attend the Chinese one to VGJ.Storm. Fnatic qualified for ESL One with a 3:2 series against TNC, but lacked consistency in China Supermajor's Round Robin qualifier format.
Failure to qualify for both tournaments means the end of the DPC run for some of these teams, since they no longer have a chance to get into top8.
For upcoming Majors where the Thursday patch would land during the tournament, we will instead be releasing the patch at the end of the event.— Dota 2 (@Dota2) April 28, 2018