With Fall standings for Dota were finalized, the Winter Invitational and new groups are now launched; read on for an overview of what to expect as we move closer to the playoffs.
The top (2) teams in each group of each division have automatically qualified for the playoffs in Spring as the top seeds. Additionally, instead of having to play in the 2nd group stage, they will be placed into the Winter Invitational tournament, a bonus event that takes place concurrently with the 2nd group stage and offers additional prizing. Remaining teams will vie for the last playoff spots through the 2nd group stage.
Regardless of whether or not your team qualified for the Winter Invitational, all teams will have matches starting after Winter break on Jan 12, so be prepared to play regardless of your playoff qualification status!
Lastly, as a reminder, all coordinators will need to internally verify ALL their team members' academic information for CSL player eligibility once again, as their status may change from one phase of the season to the next; make sure their final Fall grades are satisfactory and that they are still full-time status and in good standing, as defined by your university and specific program.
Teams that use ineligible players will be subject to penalties; you don't want your team to potentially lose their playoff spot because your coordinator did not bother to do the basic check! All team members should speak to your coordinator and double check that they are properly verifying your teammates to avoid any potential issues.
Beginning this Spring half and onwards, we will begin enforcing the usage of league tickets for CSL matches. A league ticket will record your match data for public viewing, for example on Dotabuff, and will help keep teams accountable and track performance. Matches that fail to use the appropriate ticket will be double forfeit. Links to receive ticket permissions were sent in our Spring Half email, so be sure to check there.
Notes about Ticket Usage:
The top (2) teams in each group in each division have automatically qualified for the playoffs in Spring as the top seeds. Additionally, instead of having to play in the 2nd group stage, they will be placed into the Winter Invitational tournament.
Format is single elimination Best of Three. The matches will be played weekly at the normal Saturday 12pm Pacific play time. All matches within a round must be finished by the end of Sunday Pacific so that the bracket can advance; teams may reschedule to Sunday or to a previous day as usual, if agreed. Matches that are unplayed/unreported by the deadline will be set as double forfeits.
The bracket is available on the PLAYOFFS page, under 2018-2019 Varsity and Junior Varsity, denoted as WINTER INVITATIONAL.
Prize Pool Reminder:
As stated in the rules, the groups are now mixed between regions and teams have been seeded by their Fall standings into the new groups. All unreported or unfinished matches counted as forfeit losses for BOTH teams for standings/seeding purposes. The Winter Invitational/playoff qualified teams have been removed from the groups, and the top (2) teams in each group of each division at the end of the 2nd group stage will advance to the playoffs as the bottom seeds.
In the Varsity division, the top (2) teams in each group from the 1st group stage will advance as the top seeds and the top (2) teams in each group from the 2nd group stage will advance as the bottom seeds to a 24-team double elimination playoff bracket culminating in a live final event.
In the Junior Varsity division, the top (2) teams in each group from the 1st group stage will advance as the top seeds and the top (2) teams in each group from the 2nd group stage will advance as the bottom seeds to a 48-team double elimination playoff bracket culminating in an online final.
As a reminder, every individual set counts! Playoff contention is often decided by set differentials and head-to-head results as there are normally a few tied records, so make sure to get as many set wins as possible, and give up as little as possible (2-0 is better than 2-1, and 1-2 is better than 0-2)!
Prize Pool Reminder:
*Note that teams that forfeit in the Playoffs will only be eligible to receive the prize of the previous round played, if any*
If you have any questions, you can always email us at [email protected] or speak to an admin live on DISCORD during our weekly help desk on Mon at 8-9pm Pacific (first weekly help desk for Spring starts 1/7).