The Shanghai Major 2016 – Preview
Posted 2016-02-15 Fitnerdation
Year after year, Esports has been growing and expanding to reach the popularity and engagement of sports like tennis, basketball and soccer. This comes as no surprise and when you have the chance to experience an event sponsored by Valve, you get a glimpse of the scale of eSports nowadays.
What is going on?
The first Dota 2 major tournament of 2016 is about to turn up on our doorstep. The Shanghai Major, also called “Winter Major”, will take place at the Mercedes-Benz Arena in Shanghai, China. It will be the second major after the Frankfurt Major, which took place in November 2015.
Before diving into details about the upcoming phase of the competition, let’s quickly recap what has happened in the past two stages of the major. From January 7-10, top-tier teams were trying their best to destroy the opponent’s Ancient and earn a spot in the LAN event. At the end of the qualifier stages, two teams from each region secured their place and started packing for Shanghai.
With the open qualifiers and the regional qualifiers finished, it is time for the next stage: the main LAN event. Here, 16 teams have only one ultimate goal: to be crowned champions of the Shanghai Major 2016. The tournament will be played on version 6.86c.
The Group Stage – where it all begins!
Like every other major, the competition in Shanghai will unveil in phase one, the “Group Stage”. From February 25-28, 16 teams will be divided into four groups of four teams. Matches will be played in a double-elimination, best-of-three format. The teams that finish first and second in their group will advance to the upper bracket of the main event, whilst the bottom two teams will move to the lower bracket.
The Main Event - where it all ends!
After the Group Stage, the teams will move on to the final part of the major, called the “Main Event”, which takes place from March 2-6. Based on their performance in the Group Stage, the teams are now split in two: eight teams start in the upper bracket and the other eight in the lower bracket. The first lower bracket game is played in a best-of-one format, the Grand Finals are best-of-five and all the other matches are best-of-three.
Let’s introduce the teams that will be in pursuit of the trophy. The eight direct invitees are OG, Evil Geniuses, Team Secret, EHOME, CDEC Gaming, Vici Gaming, Virtus.pro, and Alliance. The qualified rosters from SEA are Fnatic and MVP Phoenix. From EU, we’ll see Team Liquid and Team Spirit. From AM, there’s Team Archon and complLexity Gaming and from CN it’s LGD Gaming and Newbee.
Our support player, Net, expresses his initial thoughts about the Group Stage:
What are your expectations for the major and which team would you rather not face in the Group Stage and why?
“I am very confident about this team and the players' abilities. I think we can get top 8 with this roster. I would prefer not to face Alliance in the Group Stage because we have a bad track record against them (laughs).”
Our captain, Mushi, also shared his expectations of the upcoming event:
What do you consider to be the biggest challenge in this tournament? Do you want to share any thoughts about the teams you are going to face?
“Our team has not been able to achieve much lately and the teams participating in the Shanghai Major are extremely good teams. It will definitely be a tough tournament but I think that as long as we perform well as a team, we will be able to achieve good results. The biggest challenge is ourselves.”
What is on the line?
Each of the participants in this event is a top-class team with the desire to prove superiority over the opposition. However, this is not the only motivation that keeps the players going. The Shanghai Major 2016 has an alluring prize pool of $3,000,000. Yes, you read that correctly: 3 million US dollars. This is the fourth biggest prize pool to ever be rewarded by any event, right after the 2015 and 2014 edition of The International and the Dota 2 Asia Championship 2015. To satisfy your curiosity and thirst for details, let’s take a look at the exact amount each of the teams will get, depending on their final placement.
The champions of The Shanghai Major will receive $1,110,000
2nd place – $405,000
3rd place – $315,000
4th place – $255,000
5th-6th place – $202,000
7th-8th place – $105,000
9th-12th place – $45,000
13th-16th place – $30,000
Fnatic in Shanghai!
The boys from Fnatic qualified for the Shanghai Major 2016 with a decisive performance and great showcase of individual and team effort. At the Southeast Asian Qualifier, Fnatic claimed the first spot among 10 teams without dropping a single game in the playoffs of the regional qualifier.
Mushi, Miduan, Ohaiyo, DJ, Net and Kenchi are ready and fired up for the challenge in Shanghai. We had the chance to speak with Mushi and Net to better understand how players feel before the start of such a significant event.
Let’s start with our mid laner – Fnatic Mushi because he’s definitively someone the team looks up to.
Hi, Mushi. How do you feel about the upcoming Shanghai Major? You’re considered as one of the best carries in the world and the team often looks up to you. How does this spotlight on you affect your performance?
“I feel really excited to play in the Majors again. I am confident with the changes we made to our roster recently and I hope we can do well in the tournament. I was initially a solo mid player and have occasionally played the carry role. I still think that I have a lot to learn about the role and how I can contribute the best to the team. The spotlight on me always adds pressure but pressure is good. It motivates me to perform and improve myself further.”
Another player that has a key role in the team – Net, clarified the essentials of a successful performance.
Net, your team managed to qualify for the Shanghai Major by showing great communication and team synergy. What do you think will be the key to a successful performance at the major?
“I think the team environment is very important. Everybody has to be pumped and feeling good going into a match. That way, the trust level between teammates will stay high. I'm not saying that you will definitely win if you have a good team environment but without it, the team will definitely not do well. Most people cope with this differently and some people may need more time than others to recover from a bad game. We just have to help each other get over it and be prepared for what is to come.”
Conclusion - “Failing to prepare is preparing to fail.”
The Shanghai Major 2016 promises to be an event to remember. Top-tier teams, a fantastic venue, and a phenomenal crowd are the ingredients for an amazing time. The Fnatic boys have worked hard to ensure that they will give their absolute best to perform on the edge of their abilities. We wish the best of luck to our squad in Shanghai. #FNCWIN!