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Valve's strategy RPG Dota 2 will be revealed for the first time at GamesCom 2011. They'll be unveiling the game with a grand tournament called "The International."
The International will be a competition between the 16 best Dota teams in the world. They'll battle it out in a group stage, double elimination playoff. The tournament will be spread out over the course of Gamescom's five days.
These teams were presumably allowed to play the game beforehand. I like to think that they didn't, though. It'd make the event like that movie The Wizard, albeit with less Fred Savage or autism.
"The International is the first public Dota 2 event and will give the tens of millions of gamers playing Dota around the world their first look at the new game," said Gabe Newell, president and founder of Valve. "I have had the good fortune to watch the competitors as they prepare for the tournament, and the level of play is extraordinary."
The winning team will be given a $1 million cash prize by Valve. Nvidia appears to be a co-sponsor of sorts. They'll be providing all the gaming hardware for the competition.
Dota 2 is inspired by the WarCraft III custom map Defense of the Ancients. Two teams of Hero units attempt to wipe out each other's strongholds. Each Hero unit has unique abilities which grow in power as the player destroys units and structures. The match ends once one team destroys a special structure (dubbed an "ancient") in the opponent's base.
GamesCom 2011 runs from August 17th to the 21st and will take place in Cologne, Germany. If you're not in Cologne, note that the tournament will be broadcast for free in four languages: Chinese, German, Russian and English.