Malaysia Cyber Games

The Malaysia Cyber Games finals are happening this Dec 12-13 at Stadium Negara, with the biggest hype surrounding the selection of Malaysia’s first nationally-backed e-sports team.

Team Taring will see the winning team being officially anointed as national representatives to upcoming regional and international championships.

With e-sports growing in international acceptance and even making it to our local cinemas and paid-TV, it makes sense for our national youth and sports ministry to adopt e-sports in our portfolio, no?

On paper, sure, it looks good, but there are a few realities about both e-sports and Dota two itself that need to be addressed.

Dota 2 and its inbuilt chaos

Dota is full of chaos

Valve has tried to not be too much of a “nanny” when it came to organising Dota 2 tournaments, preferring a more free market, hands-off approach. This is in contrast to how rival MOBA League of Legends (LoL) is run by Riot, who has a firm control of the professional league, even giving stipends to teams to help professionalise the sport.

The current competitive setup is not regulated, with various sponsor-led tournaments being held all over the world, sometimes at the same time. This leads to events where the major teams are spread out over different competitions. Valve’s hands-off approach also means there isn’t a proper set of standards for tournaments, meaning players will have no idea whether the one they’re going to will be well-run or not.

After criticism over the lack of a set calendar for Dota 2 games, Valve in response has added more of its own tournaments besides the regular The International (TI). An additional three Valve-sponsored tournaments will be held around the world, and teams participating will be required to adhere to limited roster trade periods during the year.

It’s a start but until that is properly put in place, Team Taring will have to face a rather confusing array of tournaments to choose from.

When not riling the powers that be with her opinions, Erna is likely to be up at 3am killing dragons online. She's mad about gizmos and games and is by far THG's most famous writer. We're serious! Just look her up on Google. You can find her on Twitter at @ernamh.