In July of this year, OpTic Gaming‘s Dota 2 captain – and former CEO of Evil Geniuses – Peter “ppd” Dager announced that he would be starting a league specifically aimed at semi-professional Dota 2 competitors based in North America.
With the aim of supporting up-and-coming, budding players with better competition and an unspecified amount of income for all involved, the North America Dota Challengers League (NADCL) was born. Any team or player who falls within that region and isn’t sponsored or paid to play the game will be eligible to take part.
Out of all of the teams that choose to register for the league, eight teams will qualify for the league and will participate in a group stage which leads into a single-elimination tournament. The NADCL kicks off in October, so we reached out to ppd to delve a little into why he decided to get involved in the league and what the league entails.
Esports Insider: Firstly, how long would you say the NADCL was in development for prior to the announcement?
Peter “pdd” Dager: 2-3 months, I was exploring some different opportunities within Dota and this seemed like the coolest one.
ESI: Do you have any partners for this initiative or is it solely your doing?
ppd: We have been assembling a team of great staff who handle the majority of the work. We as a company were not partnered with any other companies or individuals for this initiative.
“I’m mostly doing it because it feels like the right thing to do.”
ESI: Are you launching the league simply to support your home nation or do you feel as if North America, in particular, needs more player development?
ppd: I’m mostly doing it because it feels like the right thing to do. I’m familiar with this region and it’s players so I know something like this will be incredibly helpful for aspiring professional players.
ESI: Can you elaborate a little on the income model that will be in place – all eight competing teams will receive money, correct?
ppd: Player experience is our number one priority so we want to make sure all the matches are played and teams put forth their best efforts to win. The prize money distribution is still not set but I plan for players to be compensated for their time and efforts even if they aren’t winning.
“We are going to make this as easy and as appetizing as we can possibly imagine”
ESI: Are there any existing tournaments – whether in Dota 2 or another title – that is serving as an inspiration or base model for the NADCL?
ppd: All of the tournaments I have been to in my experience as a player surely have some sort of impact on what I want this league to be. I haven’t competed in the DPL League in China but lots of our inspiration is drawn from there.
ESI: What are your short-term and long-term goals for the league?
ppd: Short-term I want people to put together teams and sign up. Often times people lack the grit to take control of their lives so we are going to make this as easy and as appetizing as we can possibly imagine to ensure this happens.
Long-term I want us to begin preparing for the 2nd season. I don’t plan on stopping this anytime soon and I hope the players can find some comfort in being a part of it.