Dota 2 International Day Three: Liveblog

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Yesterday we saw the longest competitive game in Dota history. Four more teams were knocked out of the tournament: MUFC, Virtus Pro, LGD.cn and Team Zenith. Games in the winners bracket will be best of three’s, while games in the losers brackets are a lone best of one. I know which bracket I’d rather be in. Hang out with us here at PCGamesN, where our Dota 2 expert Nick Wilson will be covering the tournament all night long.

TongFu vs. Invictus Gaming

TI3_Chuan

8:45AM BST / 12:45AM PDT – Game over

TongFu gave IG their best shot with their defense of their bottom barracks, and for a minute it looked like they were finally getting that teamfight they needed. But IG’s resilience and firepower got them through TongFu’s powerful initiation and let them cut down most of the team. Even Mu’s Dragon Knight couldn’t turn the tide, and he was chased down on his belated attempt to back out. That fight led into an contested Roshan for IG, which turned into more barracks, which turned out to be game.

And that will do it for today’s International coverage. We’ll be back tomorrow to cover the penultimate day. – Rob

8:15AM BST / 12:15 AM PDT – Trapped

After thirty minutes of incredibly even, close play, IG’s better leveling and prowess in teamfights is starting to tell in this match.

TongFu are still in okay shape for this stage of the game, but they’ve let Ferrari get way too far ahead, which was fatal for Liquid earlier this evening. This is keeping TongFu pinned down, and the entire map is covered in IG’s wards. TongFu need to come out ahead in a teamfight and grab some farm and objectives while the respawn timers are going. But that’s way easier said than done. – Rob

7:45AM BST / 11:45PM PDT – The Draft

TongFu:

  • Lifestealer
  • Rubick
  • Dragon Knight
  • Timbersaw
  • Doom

IG:

  • Weaver
  • Visage
  • Storm Spirit
  • Earthshaker
  • Beastmaster

Orange.Neolution Esports vs. DK – Game One

Orange_vs._DK_Game_1

7:30AM BST / 11:30PM PDT – Alchemy

Well, that’s game 1, and it goes to DK. It seemed like Orange’s game to lose, but lose it they did. Once BurNIng was fed, and after Orange gave up their best chance to gain a major objective advantage, it became a complete disaster for Orange. With an Assault Cuirass, a BKB, Shadow Blade, Abyssal Blade, and Battle Fury, BurNIng was able to single-handedly melt Orange in fight after fight, culminating in a game-clinching ultra-kill.

Given how ferociously Alchemist has turned some of these game around in the late stages, I’m left wondering if we’ll see him banned out more tomorrow, or whether we’ll simply see more late-game heroes selected as a precaution. – Rob

7:15AM BST / 11:15PM PDT – Unforced errors

On the other hand, Orange seem determined to resurrect DK. They’ve given up some bad fights and they’re letting Burning’s Alchemist get built into the kind of terrifying force we saw in Na’Vi’s last match.

But the truly unforgivable error they just committed was squandering a victorious fight at DK’s top barrack to make an ill-advised dive to pick up an extra kill. That let DK turn the fight around and make the exchange even while hanging onto their barracks. – Rob

7:10AM BST / 11:10 PDT – Inertia

This is starting to snowball away from DK. Orange are controlling the map and the pace of this match. They’re able to choose where they’ll push, take their objective, then back out, and all DK can do is watch.

What’s even more ominous is that DK effectively have no map vision and are being forced to move in a group neat their barracks turrets, while DK have offensive ward placements that let them farm safely in between pushes. At 25 minutes in, DK are looking like the walking dead. – Rob

7AM BST / 11PM PDT – Battle lines are drawn

Following some nice kills from Orange and a nice recovery from DK, this game has settled into a steady rhythm of farming, scouting, and cautious attempts at initiation. For all the kills DK gave up early, they are roughly even on gold and the game is close on XP.

Orange have given up their bottom tier 1 tower, but picked up DK’s tier 1 top and mid. Compared to some of the other stuff we’ve seen tonight, this is a strikingly conservative game. But DK need to start making some plays, or Orange are going to start turning these kills into a dangerous advantage. When they caught Orange in a Roshan, for instance, DK should have landed their stun and gotten something better than an even exchange from the deal.– Rob

6:40AM BST / 10:40PM PDT – The Draft

Orange:

  • Nature’s Prophet
  • Lifestealer
  • Chen
  • Rubick
  • Shadow Fiend

DK:

  • Alchemist
  • Weaver
  • Bane
  • Keeper of the Light
  • Magnus

Team Liquid vs Invictus Gaming – Game One

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06:15AM BST / 10:15PM PDT – Invictus Gaming wins the match

I’ve got to give it to Team Liquid, they put up one hell of a fight. To make it to this stage of the tournament they had to overcome some pretty big hurdles. The losers bracket is a tough place to start your International, and Liquid beat the odds on many occasions.

Their win against LGD.cn was the first, smashing one of the best Chinese teams into submission with some fantastic Clockwerk play. It’s a shame we didn’t see the same hero today, because Bulba is probably the best player for that hero. Period.

But then came Invictus Gaming, last years International champions. They wanted to win just as much as Liquid and become the only team to ever win it twice. At least Liquid had the majority of the crowd cheering them on until the very last moment.

I wouldn’t feel bad if I was them. They were just outplayed. I didn’t see any major mistakes in their play, just that IG had the better heroes as it trailed into the late game.

IG showed great sportsmanship with Liquid when the match was over. Now It’s up to IG to see if they can attain greatness two years in a row. -Nick

05:15AM BST / 09:15PM PDT – First Blood

Well that was fast! A well timed Frostbite from Crystal Maiden rendered Weaver helpless, even when he tried to Shukuchi away. An Open Wounds from Lifestealer and some right clicks from his friends ended his young life, giving Team Liquid first blood. The crowd went wild. -Nick

05:10AM BST / 09:10PM PDT – The Draft

Team Liquid:

  • Outworld Devourer
  • Puck
  • Rubick
  • Lifestealer
  • Crystal Maiden

Invictus Gaming:

  • Keeper of the Light
  • Weaver
  • Nyx Assassin
  • Batrider
  • Shadow Fiend

Fnatic vs Orange – Game One

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04:45AM BST / 08:45PM PDT – Orange wins the match

We had some interesting line ups from both teams, both requiring time before they came online. The surprise pick certainly had to be Undying, who had only been picked once before in the tournament. He’s a good hero when you’re facing a tri-lane, but that’s not what happened. Instead a lone Morphling from Fnatic attended the bot lane, which kind of wasted the potential of Orange.

Things picked up in the mid game. Anti-Mage was farming with incredible speed, getting a Battlefury, Manta Style and a Skull Basher. Opposing him was the Morphling and Shadowfiend, the latter had also build some scary items. When the fights came, it was all down to the Magnus and his success with his ultimate to lock down Fnatic.

That’s exactly what happened, and Fnatic were just slaughtered by the Anti-Mage who happily right clicked the stunned heroes of Fnatic until they had faded into the floor. When heroes weren’t available, the towers received the same treatment. Fnatic bowed out of the game and their place in the tournament, wishing Orange good luck. Nice guys. -Nick

04:10AM BST / 08:10PM PDT – First Blood

A four man gank from Orange all jump on Shadow Fiend mid. He nearly had the chance to retaliate with his Requiem of Souls, but a successful Reverse Polarity halted any hopes of that happening. First blood Orange. -Nick

03:55AM BST / 07:55PM PDT – The Draft

Fnatic:

  • Dark Seer
  • Chen
  • Vengeful Spirit
  • Shadow Fiend
  • Morphling

Orange:

  • Nature’s Prophet
  • Anti-Mage
  • Crystal Maiden
  • Undying
  • Magnus

Na’Vi vs TongFu – Game Three

TI13msadoma

3:25AM BST / 7:25PM PDT – A fountain-pull to victory

That’s game, and what a strange one. Dendi landed his fountain hooks when he needed to, and the rest of Na’Vi were finally in a position to make full use of them. It’s almost painful to see TongFu go down like this, because they did play so solidly throughout this last game. But XBOCT was building steadily and TongFu were playing Russian roulette when they let Dendi have Pudge again. When Na’Vi needed it most, the hammer finally clicked on a loaded chamber.

3:20AM BST / 7:20 PM PDT – A sudden twist

And with a full wipe of TongFu, Na’Vi have come roaring back into this game. Between Dendi’s fountain-hook and a suddenly tanky XBOCT, Na’Vi managed to turn this game 180 degrees. IN the wake of the wipe they smashed up TongFu’s middle and took the barracks down, and all TongFu’s desperation defense accomplished was to add more kills to Na’Vi’s count. What an incredible play.– Rob

3:00AM BST / 7:00PM PDT – Small victories, big defeats

These are not the trades Na’Vi is looking for. Once again, Na’Vi were off to a good start in their engagement, but even with Pudge’s Chen-hooks, Na’Vi weren’t able to put enough damage down to kill Sheng’s Visage and the fight quickly turned against them. That led to TongFu being able to grab a safe Roshan.

Na’Vi really need their skill shots to be working better, particularly from Dendi and Funn1k, and they’re just not getting them reliably. Dendi has gotten a number of highlight-reel kills here, but in between those flashy moments, TongFu are methodically pulling ahead on objectives, gold, and XP. – Rob

2:50AM BST / 6:50PM PDT – Skirmishing

Dendi is controlling Pudge again, and that’s starting to have an impact. One minute he’s taking out Hao in mid, and the next he’s yanking Funn1k’s Windrunner out of a TongFu trap.

Still, this is more of a fencing match as the two sides show each other a bit more respect than we’ve seen all night. Nothing concentrates the mind like a Game 3. Nobody wants to give up easy kills here, so mostly we’re seeing light turret pressure and a lot of cautious farming.

And as I say that, Dendi accidentally ended up pulling the entire TongFu roster with a bad hook and pulled his team into a 3-0 exchange that cost Na’Vi their mid. Once again, the Gyro’s AoE proves decisive in a big engagement.– Rob

02:35AM BST / 06:35PM PDT – The Draft

Na’Vi:

  • Chen
  • Alchemist
  • Nyx Assassin
  • Pudge
  • Windrunner

TongFu:

  • Dark Seer
  • Rubick
  • Gyrocopter
  • Visage
  • Doom

Na’Vi vs TongFu – Game Two

TI3_Navi_Picks

2:25AM BST / 6:25 PM PDT – TongFu wins game two

Well that’s that. TongFu’s gameplan just worked with their composition, and Na’Vi’s started getting derailed from the start. XBOCT didn’t get fed the way he needed to, and letting Hao snowball so early was fatal. Things might have gone better if Na’Vi hadn’t overextended so dangerously on their top barracks push, but even if they had backed away without giving up all that XP, Hao was on track to be a danger and Na’Vi was reaching the end of their composition’s effectiveness. – Rob

2:10AM BST / 6:10PM PDT – A snowball rolling downhill

Na’Vi have gotten themselves in trouble here. Hao is way ahead on experience and is basically un-engageable by Na’Vi. Na’Vi were ahead on positioning to start out, but as they begin to run scared, their own towers are falling down right and left.

The problem with Na’Vi is the damage potential just isn’t there, even when their initiation is good. And the gold lead that TongFu is building is going to make those dynamics even worse.-Rob

1:50 AM BST / 5:50PM PDT

This looks like it will be a slightly more even game, if only because TongFu seem much more wary of Na’Vi that they were in game 1. But they gave up first kill on a solid gank attempt against Dendi. Mu’s Dragon Knight simply waited too long trying to rack up that kill and rather than back off, he let Kuroky’s Visage come and take him down.

It’s a tough balance TongFu have to strike here: they can’t let Dendi run riot like he last game, and they can’t be bullied by him. But at the same time, they need to have be performing better in their other lanes. Unfortunately, that doesn’t seem to be happening. Banana gave up a bad kill in bottom to Na’Vi’s Ursa, and that cost them a tower. And their attacks on Dendi keep coming up short.– Rob

1:45AM BST / 5:45PM PDT – The Draft

TongFu:

  • Dark Seer
  • Anti-Mage
  • Rubick
  • Dragon Knight
  • Leshrac

Na’Vi:

  • Chen
  • Visage
  • Windrunner
  • Puck
  • Ursa

Na’Vi vs TongFu – Game One

TI13asdma

01:20AM BST / 05:20PM PDT – Na’Vi wins game one

You can’t stop a Dendi Pudge. He was almost unkillable. Hook and hook he tore TongFu apart. I honestly can’t fathom why TongFu let Na’Vi get their hands on the Pudge, and I hope for their sake that they ban him out in the next game. Props also goes towards Funn1k on the Mirana, landing just as many Sacred Arrows to score some kills.

What can TongFu do in game two?

Ban Pudge. To be honest even if they do that there is still multitude of heroes Dendi can wreak havoc with, but at least it won’t be that one. It will be interesting nevertheless to see what they come up with, and if it will be enough to keep them in the safety of the winners bracket.

Are we one step closer to seeing the two best european teams face off for a spot in the finals? I just shivered with excitement at the mere thought. -Nick

01:10AM BST / 05:10PM PDT – Mmmmmmmmm, fresh meat!

You never give Dendi his most beloved hero: Pudge. TongFu are currently experiencing why. Dendi is at the time of writing has eleven kills and seventeen successful hooks. TongFu are at the mercy of this one hero who is getting bigger and bigger with each kill thanks to Flesh Heap. -Nick

12:50AM BST / 04:50PM PDT – First Blood

We knew it was coming. TongFu attempted to take first blood mid against Dendi playing Pudge, but unaware he had backup right behind him. The Clockwerk engages, locking Pudge inside his cogs. But Rubick comes out of smoke, and Mirana sends her arrow towards the trapped Clockwerk. Pudge got the kill with his rot, and manages to get away. First blood to Na’Vi, and there was no better hero than Pudge to achieve it. -Nick

12:45AM BST / 04:45PM PDT – The Draft

Na’Vi:

  • Chen
  • Rubick
  • Mirana
  • Pudge
  • Gyrocopter

TongFu:

  • Dark Seer
  • Shadow Demon
  • Spectre
  • Jakiro
  • Clockwerk

Alliance vs DK – Game Three

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12:20AM BST / 04:20PM PDT – Alliance wins game three

Alliance have successfully retained their winner bracket position, by beating DK in the third game. DK tried to get back on track by pushing out the encroaching creep, but were then left to the mercy of Batrider and his lighting blink + lasso. A couple of key pick offs enabled Alliance to commit and breach the base, resulting in a huge team fight. Spectre dropped like a rock in water thanks to Phantom Lancer and his army of illusions. Even buying back only gave Alliance another kill, having cleaned up the rest of the team of DK while Spectre was running back.

Alliance manage to stay on track for the finals, now guaranteed a top three place in the competition with a minimal payout of over $280,000. But this match has shown us that Alliance aren’t immortal, and they will only face tougher opponents in the game to come.

Next up it’s Na’Vi vs TongFu. -Nick

12:10AM BST / 04:10PM PDT – War of attrition

It’s stacked against DK right now. Alliance have busted down all the towers up to the base, doing a good join at keeping them contained. Starving a Spectre of farm like this is horrible for DK, who need to get back on track with their big items. But they can’t leave the base, as the threat of a blink + lasso from Batrider threatens to pick them off. -Nick

11:45PM BST / 03:45PM PDT – First Blood

Whenever you face against a Batrider, there is one imperative rule anyone should follow. Don’t let the Napalm stack too high. Alchemist mid apparently didn’t get the memo, allowing S4 to get six stacks of it on him. This slowed Alchemist down to a crawl, while increasing Batriders damage exponentially. He almost got a stun off on S4 under the tower, which would have netted him a revenge kill from the grave, but he died before he could charge it up. First blood to Alliance. -Nick

11:35PM BST / 03:35PM PDT – The Draft

Alliance:

  • Batrider
  • Naga Siren
  • Keeper of the Light
  • Phantom Lancer
  • Nature’s Prophet

DK:

  • Spectre
  • Chen
  • Alchemist
  • Rubick
  • Clockwerk

Alliance vs DK – Game Two

TI13asmdaa

11:10PM BST / 03:10PM PDT – DK wins game two

For the past forty minutes I’ve been absolutely bewitched. DK got the first blood, got ahead on towers and seemed to be doing a mirror of what Alliance were doing to them last game. They were dictating the fights, Alliance were as Merlini said “dancing to their tune”.

Admiral Bulldog playing the Nature’s Prophet made some mistakes that shouldn’t be happening at a tournament of this level. With DK having a Nyx Assassin and a Beastmasters with Aghanim’s Scepter, split pushing was a risky excursion that usually resulted in his death. There was also a horrible play mid, where he ran right back into the fight on 10% health, hopefully just a miss click.

Alliance have lost their first game of The International, and it all comes down to this next game. It’s all the separates them from going forward, or being demoted to the losers bracket in a ugly best of one against either Fnatic or Orange. -Nick

10:30PM BST / 02:30PM PDT – First Blood

DK once again get the first blood. Dragon Knight was the victim of a gank from Nyx Assassin and co, stunning him up and nuking him down. A quiet game so far however, with the only other action being a tower destroyed each. -Nick

10:20PM BST / 02:20PM PDT – The Draft

Alliance:

  • Nature’s Prophet
  • Naga Siren
  • Alchemist
  • Chen
  • Dragon Knight

DK:

  • Visage
  • Anti-Mage
  • Nyx Assassin
  • Dark Seer
  • Beastmaster

Alliance vs DK – Game One

TI13aod

9:55PM BST / 01:55PM PDT – Alliance win game one

Alliance had breached the base of DK, with both bottom and mid barracks destroyed. All that was standing between Alliance and the “gg” was the top barracks, already injured from the assault. With the push from Anti-Mage illusions and Nature’s Prophet, DK couldn’t leave the base.

The deciding fight inevitably came when EGM landed a great Shackle Shot with Windrunner on the Alchemist. A prompt follow up from S4 on the Batrider jumped in and Lassoed him, dragging him out to his death at the hands of Loda on Anti-Mage. Burning bought back instantly, teleporting back to the fight. Dark Seer then tried to land a Vacuum into Wall combo, but Alliance just scattered in all four directions, avoiding it entirely. One by one the members of DK fell to Alliance, who could do nothing but “gg” and go to game two. -Nick

9:30PM BST / 01:30PM PDT – Who’s winnng?

Right now it’s a pretty split game. Alchemist is getting close to being six slotted, making him a formidable foe. Alliance seem to be dictating the fights however, pressuring DK with the Nature’s Prophet and using Batriders lasso to disable the Alchemist. I think if this game goes to the fifty minute mark, Alliance will be at the mercy of a farmed Weaver and Alchemist, compared to a Anti-Mage and a split pushing Nature’s Prophet. -Nick

9:15PM BST / 01:15PM PDT – How many Valve technicians does it take to replace a monitor?

Five. No, not three. -Nick

9:00PM BST / 01:00PM PDT – First Blood

After a failed gank top on Nature’s Prophet, which handily denied himself to the neutral creeps, DK turned their attention to Batrider mid. Weaver managed to get a hold of a double damage rune, which combined with Sekuchi left the Batrider helpless. First blood to DK. -Nick

8:50PM BST / 12:50PM PDT – The Draft

Alliance:

  • Batrider
  • Nature’s Prophet
  • Chen
  • Anti-Mage
  • Windrunner

DK:

  • Weaver
  • Dark Seer
  • Alchemist
  • Jakiro
  • Shadow Demon

8:30PM BST / 12:30PM PDT – Pregame thoughts

Today we have some fantastic games ahead of us. Can Alliance keep their undefeated streak all the way to the finals? Will Na’Vi best the most successful Chinese team of TongFu? Can Team Liquid carry on their form from yesterday and best the previous champions Invictus Gaming? So many questions, and today will produce all the answers.

I think the match to watch will be Team Liquid and IG in the losers bracket. Out of all the teams here, I think Liquid want to be crowned the victors the most. They have such a huge following outside and inside the crowd, all hoping to see the home team take the tournament and cement their place in Dota 2 history.

Another interest is in Alliance. Their streak has been nothing short of impressive, but the matches are getting closer and closer. The skill gap is closing, and it’s about time they start pulling out the secret strategies. Yesterday they won their second game in a close base race, with barely two seconds between them. I think if they do indeed lose a game, there is a real threat of them taking it really hard, and even throwing them off their game. -Nick

Here is the result from yesterday::

Winners Bracket:

  • Alliance 2-0 LGD.cn
  • DK 2-1 Invictus Gaming

Losers Bracket:

  • Team Liquid 1-0 MUFC
  • Team Zenith 1-0 Virtus Pro
  • Team Liquid 1-0 LGD.cn
  • Invictus Gaming 1-0 Team Zenith

Both brackets will compete all the way until the grand final, all the way until Sunday. The pre show is kicking off right now, tune in here to watch it. The first match will be between Alliance and DK, Alliance currently undefeated in the entire tournament. so go get yourself ladened with snacks and drinks and settle in for another night of Dota 2.-Nick