Valve has shared its plans for the upcoming 2021 Dota Pro Circuit season.

If you recall, the previous DPC format revolved around three competition cycles: qualifiers, Minors, and Majors. Throughout the previous DPC season, Valve would host five Major and Minor tournaments. Teams battled to qualify for these tournaments in the hopes of earning DPC points, which they needed to accumulate if they wanted to be eligible for The International.

The new DPC Regional League, in comparison, will focus on seasonal competitions.

All six competitive Dota 2 regions will have a Regional League, which is divided into an upper and lower division, comprising eight teams each. Both divisions will compete for six weeks, as all teams aim to qualify for the 2021 DPC Major.

The first Regional League kicks off on January 18 with the first 2021 DPC season, followed by the second 2021 DPC season on April 13. 

Both seasons lead up towards the two Dota 2 Majors, with the first taking place on March 25 and the second slated for June 2. 

The 2021 DPC season and Major will culminate in The International 10, which has amassed a whopping US$40 million prize pool. TI10 is still set to take place in Stockholm, Sweden in August.

Regional League: Upper Division

After finishing the Regional League, upper-division teams that placed in the top four will advance to the Major, while the fifth and sixth-placed teams will remain in the upper division for the next season. The bottom two teams will then be relegated to the lower division for the following season.

The first place team in the upper division will immediately advance to the Major playoffs, while the second place team will be placed in the Major’s group stage. The third and fourth place teams will continue on to the Major Wild Card Stage.

Teams in the upper division will also be competing for 1,150 DPC total points, along with US$205,000 in prize money.

Regional League: Lower Division

The top two teams from the Regional League will be promoted to the upper division for the next season, while the third to sixth place teams will remain in the lower division. The bottom two teams will be eliminated from the lower division.

The lower division has no DPC point allocation, but will offer a US$75,000 prize pool.


After each Regional League season will be a 2021 DPC Major. This will include a total of 18 teams from six different regions. The first Major will allocate team slots for each region as follows:

  • Europe: Top four teams
  • China: Top four teams
  • Southeast Asia: Top three teams
  • CIS: Top three teams
  • North America: Top two teams
  • South America: Top two teams.

Majors will begin with the wild card competition, which features six teams competing in a best-of-two round robin. The top two teams will advance to the Group Stage, while the bottom four teams will be eliminated.

Next is the group stage, where eight teams will also compete in a best-of-two round robin format. The top two teams will advance to the upper bracket of the playoffs, while the third to sixth place teams will continue in the lower bracket. The bottom two teams in the group stage, on the other hand, will be eliminated.

The playoffs will have 12 teams compete in a double-elimination bracket, with the upper and lower bracket comprising four teams each. The 2021 DPC Majors will have 2,700 DPC total points up for grabs, along with a total of US$500,000 in prize money.

DPC 2021 Season 1 Upper Division Direct Invited teams:

Valve has disclosed the different tournament organizers who will be running each regional league:

  • Europe: Dreamhack
  • CIS: ESL
  • China: Perfect World
  • Southeast Asia: PGL
  • North America: BTS
  • South America: Dotapit


Valve has also coordinated with fans and players alike and created a schedule that fits the regions’ play and broadcast times as best as possible. The new schedule is as follows (all in Pacific Time):

Credit: Valve

To read the full 2021 DPC blog post from Valve, click here.

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