ESPN to broadcast live DotA 2 International games

DotA 2 just helped push eSports further into the mainstream, as ESPN3 online will be broadcasting DotA 2 games during the International finals. On top of that, a preview of the final will be shown on ESPN2 before hand, giving many millions of Americans the chance to figure out if they like the idea of digital sports being put alongside real world ones.

"From the success of the Compendium to the collaboration with ESPN, this year's International really demonstrates how much competitive gaming has grown to rival traditional sports," said Valve's Erik Johnson. "We believe the teams have also pushed to a new level of play this year and will further demonstrate the incredible advances made across this tournament since it first began three short years ago."

If the new viewers don't like the idea of the game itself, they might be able to get behind the fact that so much money is at stake. With almost $5 million up for grabs for the winning team and over $10 million in total, this year's International is the biggest eSports prize pool ever.

If you've seen the documentary Free to Play too, you'll know that this represents unprecedented growth. From the original DotA 2 International in 2011, with a million dollar grand prize, here we are with nearly five times that much up for grabs, just three years later.

If you don't have ESPN through your cable connection, you can watch the International footage through the channel's application on your smartphone, or through other services like Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Roku or your Xbox console.

Some fans have expressed concerns about how ESPN sportscasters will handle the broadcast. Will they bring in experts to talk about it like the official twitch streams do, or will it merely be a bunch of traditional sports guys poking fun at this gaming generation's sporting heroes?

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I remember the mod which

I remember the mod which inspired dota, it was much better than dota but for some reason, people jumped on to dota and then lol. They always played the same map, as in lol. Same thing happened in places like counter strike. Entire cybers would begin presenting cs and a lot of maps and even more hl mods. Most of them would finish with cs alone and playing the same map for years. I think it has to do with stupidity. They just cant compute the variables and factors that actually make the world that much fun. I mean, who in his sane mind would play dota, lol or the same map on cs for years? I also think it has to do with computer specs, most people just dont cope with getting better machines for better games, they just stick with what they got. Reason to why cs got so big with cybers as with w3. They never upgraded their machines and when a new guy or gal comes in, instead of finding a healthy game community, they meet a stale and antic community. Thats simply not hardcore, its not the way of megagames and its not healthy. For proof, sc1 and sc2. The first still has more competition because it needs less machine and because they streamlined that baby so much that instead of a strategy game you get a number game which caters to twitchers, a strategy game that caters to twitchers! What the hell? There was more twitch and strategy in a hardcore game of quake3 than with a game of sc1! Why play it at all? These so called esports have many problems but the worst of them is that they are boring. When soccer fans, football fans or baseball fans watch a game, they like that their teams wins but you know what they like even more? A good game, with both teams taking risks, seeing awesome moves and strategies. Thats what real players want. These games dont offer that and Im very worried about the health of the game community and where the mass is taking it.

by that logic and to use your

by that logic and to use your comparison, physical sports should also use different fields to play on maybe we can put a huge pit fall with spikes at the 50 yard line, and what about those tennis players who fail to perform switching from grass, clay and hard courts in tennis, it is obvious you don't understand the competitive mentality to be the best at some thing, anything, is quite the rush, the thing that makes it similar to physical sports is the fact that it is fair and balanced for all players and they constantly tweak small thing to improve this aspect, if you don't get the game fair enough, I personally don't get all the world cup hype, I would rather watch a faster sport like the V8 Supercars or AFL (aussie rules football), only slow sport I really like is archery only because I am an archer myself, you can't take away from the fact that these guys are the best at what they do and can actually make a living from it because of the fans of the game.

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