is a free-to-play multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA) video game developed and published by Valve Corporation. The game was originally created as a community mod in Warcraft 3 "Reign of Chaos" and it's exspasion "The Frozen Throne", by an amateur game designer with the pseudonym "Eul" later on a guy who went under the pseudonym "Iecefrog" took over as lead designer, when Valve later on decided to remake the game, they hired "Icefrog" as their lead designer. Before the remake Dota was allready a well know game with alot of players world wide, and a pretty big competetive scene. When Dota 2 came out the popularity sky rocketed and it is still growing, now it's definitly one of the biggest multiplayer games in world, averaging about 500.000 players daily.
Development of Dota 2 began in 2009 when IceFrog, the pseudonymous lead designer of the original Defense of the Ancients mod, was hired by Valve to create a modernized sequel. Dota 2 was officially released for Microsoft Windows, OS X, and Linux-based personal computers via the digital distribution platform Steam in July 2013, following a Windows-only public beta phase that began two years prior. Despite some criticism going towards its steep learning curve and complexity, the game was praised for its rewarding gameplay, production quality, and faithfulness to its predecessor, with multiple gaming publications later considering it to be one of the greatest video games of all time. The game initially used the original Source game engine until it was ported to Source 2 in 2015, making it the first game to use it. Since its release, Dota 2 has been one of the most played games on Steam, with over a million concurrent players at its peak. The popularity of the game has led to official merchandise for it being produced, including apparel, accessories, and toys, as well as promotional tie-ins to other games and media. The game also allows for the community to create custom game modes, maps, and hero cosmetics, which are uploaded to the Steam Workshop and curated by Valve. Dota 2 has a widespread and active competitive scene, with teams from across the world playing professionally in various leagues and tournaments. Premium Dota 2 tournaments often have prize pools totaling millions of U.S. dollars, the highest of any eSport. The largest of them is known as The International, which is produced annually by Valve and held at the KeyArena in Seattle. Valve also manages an event format known as the Dota Pro Circuit, which are a series of tournaments held annually that award qualification points based on results for getting directly invited to The International. For most tournaments, media coverage is done by a selection of on-site staff who provide commentary and analysis for the ongoing matches, similar to traditional sporting events. Broadcasts of professional Dota 2 matches are streamed live over the internet, and sometimes simulcast on television networks, with peak viewership numbers in the millions
To ensure that enough Defense of the Ancients players would take up Dota 2 and to showcase the game's capabilities, Valve sponsored sixteen accomplished Defense of the Ancients teams to compete at The International, a Dota 2 specific eSports tournament, for a one million dollar prize in 2011. The International became an annual championship tournament in 2012, with the venue changing to Seattle. In its third year, The International allowed crowdfunding to add to its prize pool through an interactive, in-game app called a "compendium". Compendiums, which are optional and must be purchased separately, allow players who buy them to directly raise prize money for The International by spending money on unique compendium cosmetics and other in-game items, with 25% of all the revenue made going directly to the prize pool. Sales from the 2013 compendium helped raise over $2.8 million, making The International 2013 reclaim its previous title as having the largest prize pool in eSports history from the League of Legends Season 2 World Championship. Since then, each annual tournament of The International has broken the previous one's prize pool record, with the fourth iteration of the tournament raising nearly US$11 million, exceeding the prizes pools of the Super Bowl, Masters Tournament, and Tour de France. At The International 2015, the prize pool exceeded $18.4 million, earning the champion team, Evil Geniuses, over $6 million. Following the inaugural event of The International, several other eSport events began to transition from Defense of the Ancients to Dota 2, including the Electronic Sports World Cup. DreamHack would also support Dota 2 in 2011, following a year without support for the original, on account of other MOBA titles such as Heroes of Newerth and League of Legends. By the end of its first year in its beta phase, Dota 2 was one of the highest-paying eSport titles of 2011, second only to StarCraft II. In 2012, Dota 2 began as an official title for the World Cyber Games annual event at World Cyber Games 2012. The Electronic Sports League (ESL) began a seasonal tournament for Dota 2 called the RaidCall EMS One in 2013, which was the largest independent tournament for Dota 2 by the beginning of 2013. Beginning in September 2013, the Association for Chinese eSports began a league, called the WPC ACE Dota 2 League, which had the largest third-party prize pool in Dota 2 eSports history at the time. At Electronic Entertainment Expo 2013, Nexon announced the investment of two billion South Korean won, (approximately $1.7 million), into amateur and professional leagues in South Korea for 2013, to coincide with the launch of their distribution agreement in the fall of that year. Modeled after the interactive compendium for The International, Valve introduced a compendium third-party tournament organizers could sell, beginning with DreamLeague in February 2014. In February 2015, the Valve-sponsored Dota 2 Asia Championships was held in Shanghai with a prize pool of over $3 million, raised through compendium sales. In total, professional Dota 2 tournaments had earned teams and players over $100 million in prize money by June 2017, with over half of that being awarded at the International tournaments, making it the highest earning eSport game by a margin of nearly $60 million.