Esports Events

Team Aster Wins StarLadder ImbaTV Dota 2 Minor Season 3

StarLadder ImbaTV Dota 2 Minor Season 3 was the 5th tournament of the Dota Pro Circuit and its 3rd Minor. The event offered $300,000 in prizes, 660 qualification points for TI10 and one ticket to ESL One Los Angeles. Needless to say, plenty of esports betting opportunities were available throughout the competition and some of those who enjoy betting on Dota 2 got involved in the action. In this article, I will make a short summary of StarLadder Minor Season 3 and draw the conclusions.

StarLadder Dota 2 Minor Participants

StarLadder ImbaTV Dota 2 Minor Season 3 brought together 8 teams. These teams came from all of the 6 official regions of DPC.

  • Europe: Alliance
  • CIS: Gambit Esports, forZe eSports
  • North America: business associates, CR4ZY
  • South America: NoPing e-sports
  • China: Team Aster
  • Southeast Asia: BOOM Esports

Most of these teams did not look like that would amount to much, and that’s exactly what ended up happening. Others looked like favourites ahead of the event, and they ended up winning it or placing near the top.

For example, NoPing e-sports was an underdog and got crushed by the competition. The South American team did not have any chance against the other rosters and ended up finishing 8th. They did take one game off CR4ZY, but this was not one of the top contenders for the title. In fact, CR4ZY did not even make it out of the groups.

At the other extreme, we had Team Aster, which shouldn’t have competed in this StarLadder ImbaTV Minor at all. The Chinese team is simply too strong for this level of competition and this became obvious from their very first match. Aster only lost one game (map) during the entire tournament, in the Grand Final, against Alliance. In the other 4 matches they played, they simply demolished everyone with ease.

StarLadder Dota 2 Minor Results

Like all Minor events, StarLadder Dota 2 was divided into two stages: Groups and Playoffs.

Group Stage Results

In the Group Stage, the tournament was dominated by 4 teams.

In Group A, Aster and BOOM placed 1st and 2nd respectively. Aster had a very easy group while BOOM narrowly won the matches against business associates and forZe, after losing to Aster in the opening match.

In Group B, Gambit and Alliance triumphed over CR4ZY and NoPing e-sports. In particular, Gambit had a strong playstyle and looked extremely dominant, even against Alliance. This made people think that they might have a real shot at winning the entire tournament. But unfortunately for them, they fell against Aster and then Alliance in the Playoffs and finished the tournament in 3rd place.

Playoffs Stage

In the Playoffs, Aster crushed Alliance and Gambit defeated BOOM. In the Upper Bracket, Aster went from one victory to the next until they won the Grand Final with a score of 3 – 1. Their opponent was Alliance, a team that got stronger and stronger as the event unfolded and ended up beating both BOOM as well as Gambit in the Lower Bracket.

What Did We Learn

The key lesson we learned from StarLadder Dota 2 Minor is that the Chinese teams are much stronger than everyone else at Minors. That’s because the Chinese region has many strong competitors and some of them are bound to end up playing in the Minors simply because they finish 4th in the regional qualifiers. But when they’re confronted with lower-skilled teams from the other regions, the strength difference becomes enormous.