While Curse was at PAX this year, some of us broke from the rest of the team to go watch the DotA 2 International Championship over in Benaroya Hall. The main event was a three-day spectacular culminating in the best-of-five Grand Championship, starring teams Invictus Gaming (iG) and Natus Vincere (Na`Vi) as they competed for a one million dollar grand prize!
Benaroya was packed to the brim with an electric crowd for the Sunday night finals. Underdogs iG came rocketing out in defiance of their loser's bracket standing with a Game One win, only to be beaten back by defending champions Na`Vi in the second round. iG sealed their tournament win with first-class play in the third and fourth games, however, astounding the viewers worldwide.
Game 1: iG
A clash in the jungle right off the start ended in iG taking first blood on ARS-ART's Shadow Shaman, immediately branding an aggressive tone onto the skirmish. iG proved the superior hunter however, pulling off several ganks and proceeding to stomp all over Na`Vi's mid-barracks. The rest is history, with Na`Vi's Puppey closing at minute 28 with 'GG'
Game 2: Na`Vi
Na`Vi knew how to handle iG's aggressive tactics this time around, using Naga Siren's ultimate setup to their advantage and destroying iG early on. The defending champions then proceeded to build up their resources and slowly suffocate iG off of the map, culminating in a merciful coup de grâce on their base.
Game 3: iG
Faith from iG kept Na`Vi annoyed with his Disruptor's Glimpse, setting up for successful kills by his teammates. Na`Vi had trouble finding any real anchor in the map, while iG repeated their opponent's overall tactics for Game 2 - farming until they were too powerful to take down, then ending it with a kill score of 20 to 2.
Game 4: iG
Na`Vi surprised the crowd with their Nyx Assassin pick, and after a questionable trilane squabble, came back and ganked to slow iG Ferrari's farm. iG came back with their level six Tidehunter though, and very nearly took out Na`Vi in a wombo-combo. Na`Vi found an opportunity back in though after iG was blocked by a fight gone wrong in mid, and further buybacks from Naga Siren and Templar Assassin to prevent Roshan were unsuccessful.
iG farmed and played safe for a while, with both teams pushing but Na`Vi struggling the whole time to keep up. The game ended with another inescapable wombo-combo by iG, crowning them the International Champions.