today, November 24, dates and information for the next season of the Dota Pro Circuit (DPC) as well as timing for the next patch and new hero.
The 2021 iteration of the DPC will begin on Monday, January 18. From the announcement, "16 teams within two divisions will compete in each of the six Regional Leagues."
The top teams from each region will qualify for the "first Major of the season," a statement that implies there will be more than one. However, in times of the global pandemic, we take nothing for granted. Additional details and scheduling information will be available in the future.
The previous DPC season, 2019-2020, was disrupted in March by the COVID-19 pandemic. Nearly all LAN events have been canceled in response to the health threat. The International 10 was also delayed, with crowdfunding pushing the prize pool up over $40 million USD.
New patch, new hero
In the same blog post, Valve has also revealed Patch 7.28 won't be available until mid-December. A new hero will accompany it. The only clue Valve has given to her identity is "she needs a bit more time to cozy up for the winter." Could she be some kind of animal that hibernates? A woman wearing winter gear? We already have Crystal Maiden, who is snow and ice themed, so maybe the cozying up for winter was just Northern Hemisphere bias and not an indicator about the new hero's identity at all! We've got a few weeks left to speculate, regardless.
The new amateur competitive season will begin December 1 with new treasures and a "seasonal quest reset."
With only eight weeks to go before the new DPC launch, we anticipate plenty of information should trickle out shortly. Which teams will make the top Division cut in their regions? What will the schedule look like, and how many games will teams play? When and where will the Major take place? How will the games be cast?
And, perhaps critically for the scene, will this DPC season provide some much-needed stability and structure? Will it empower team organizations enough to keep them afloat even during the pandemic?