What’s the word for when something you have huge expectations for massively, improbably eclipses those expectations? Well, that: sales of Dota 2’s compendium have seen The International 2015 prize pool deepen and widen to a size large enough to hold more than $11 million.
That means Valve’s tournament now boasts the largest prize pool for any one event in the history of eSports, with 65 days yet to go.
No big deal.
The previous holder of that record was, surprise surprise, The International 2014 – which by the end offered winnings of $10,930,698.
Valve kicked off this year’s proceedings 35 days ago – sweetening the prize pot with $1.6 million of their own funds, and pledging to add 25% of all compendium earnings to the event’s cash pool.
Now we’re clear of $11 million, the shrewder mathematicians among you will have noted that Valve must have made many, many millions in the run-up to this year’s International.
The compendium is an all-round almanac for the competition that feeds back into the game itself: Dota players can earn in-game rewards by finishing challenges, tracking the event and making match predictions.
Valve have set the community a prize pool goal of $15 million – and provided several carrots along that path in the form of stretch rewards. They began at $2m with event-specific cursor icons, and end at $15m with a new Immortal item and comic for hero Axe.
Last year, Valve drew up new stretch goals once they reached their initial target – do you think they’ll wind up doing the same again this time?