Dota 2 and League of Legends became the most widely played games in the world and by 2011, both companies made serious commitments to their esports scene as a way to market and grow their game. Valve announced The International, a tournament that boasted the biggest prize pool in esports history at $1.6 million in 2011 for the game’s unveiling at Gamescon. And, that’s where Dota2’s first dynasty would emerge — Natus Vincere. “There’s moments of esports that are landmark and this is one of them. In Cologne, and Na’Vi the winners, you guys have just made history.” Between 2011 and 2013, navi not only set the record for the most international grand finals appearances with three but they captured over 15 payforit deposit casinos as well. Their fiercely aggressive and passionate style of play quickly made them fan favorites. From what is now known as the play to the controversial fountain hooks, Na’Vi and the way in which they played the game made others want to pick up the keyboard and mouse to do the same. (Casting) But their relevance to Dota 2 and to esports as a whole goes beyond just that.
As the first team to ever win a million dollars from a single esports event, Na’Vi broke down the notion that esports could never be lucrative. And for those who dreamed of making a living off of esports, that was the moment they knew it could all be worth while. Although 2013 would be the end of Na’Vi’s time atop the Dota 2 food chain, in the East, in League of Legends, a new team was making waves and establishing themselves as a young and exciting team to watch SK Telecom T1 K. (Casting) SK Telecom T1K broke out into competitive scene with a bang. A solo queue prodigy turned pro by the name of Faker was making fools of his opponents with mechanical prowess previously never seen before in the game’s already three-year competitive history. (Casting) He was so unbelievably good and his teammates so effective at supporting him, that he would single handedly win matches on carries like LeBlanc.
Thanks to Faker’s godliness SKT, from 2013 to 2017 have attended four League of Legends World Championships and won three. “The undisputed best team in the world. The SKT reign continues. They win their third world championship. They’ve captured two out of a possible four Mid Season Invitational titles and have more domestic league titles than any other franchise in Korean history. Their consistency atop the League of Legends esports food chain helped grow the game much like the way the Magic Johnson Lakers and the Larry Bird Celtics helped to grow the NBA from its humble roots in the 1980s. Marketability and consistency were SKT, and especially Faker’s bread and butter. As much as SKT needed Riot Games, it was a symbiotic relationship. League’s player base began to explode, and people became more interested in the esports scene because they wanted to get better at the game.