Newbee Wins The International 2014
A whole year of competition, two weeks in Seattle and one tournament featuring the top Dota 2 teams led to one final Best of Five series for the biggest prize in the history of eSports. But in the battle of #1 seed Vici Gaming and plucky underdog Newbee, there could be only one champion. After a long and odd season, it was Newbee who raised the Aegis of Champions and took home $5 million as The International 2014 champion.
While Chinese Dota has a reputation for being very slow and very passive, Vici and Newbee are very aggressive teams who like to get games over quick. As such, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that this was the fastest The International Grand Final in the tournament’s four years.
The first game looked like it would be a harbinger of things to come. Vici came out of the gates flying. Just as they did in their march through the Lower Bracket, Vici started strong with first blood and a series of quick kills. This allowed them to snowball quickly and Newbee didn’t really get back into the match. They tried a split-push to put pressure on Vici but they marched into the Newbee base and forced the fight on their terms which didn’t go well for the Winner’s Bracket winner and made for a 25-minute victory for Vici.
Having learned their lesson in Game One, Newbee made sure to get the advantage quickly by scoring a first blood of their own in Game Two. They also made sure to approach team fights in a smarter way which is how Vici got the quick advantage and snowball in the first game. By the midpoint of the match, Vici was trying to force the push but it only played right into Newbee’s hands who kept stretching the advantage. Their lead was so big that Vici GG’d before Newbee even threatened their base.
The third game started out evenly even though Newbee got a quick boost from First Blood. Vici lost their hold on the game when a failed gank turned into 0-2 fight for them. They tried sneaking in a Roshan but their last ditch attempt to get back into the game was thwarted by Newbee resulting in a GG at the 17-minute mark.
As was the case in their previous wins, Newbee was looking for fast aggression and an early advantage that their opposition couldn’t overcome. And wouldn’t you know it, they were able to do so again. Every time Vici tried pushing, Newbee had an answer for them. After looking so strong in Game One and through their march through the Lower Bracket, they just couldn’t muster the fight to win The International. At the 15-minute mark, the game was conceded and Newbee was The International 2014 champions.
In this last game Vici’s rOtk went 0/7/3 (going 1/18/10 in Vici’s three losses). In a Facebook post after the game, the team essentially threw him under the bus suggesting that he overextended too much and helped snowball the games in Newbee’s favour. Maybe that’s true but considering that Newbee drafted teams that were going to dominate the early game, maybe they could have tried catching up there.
For the win, Newbee took home a prize of $5,028,300. When the first International tournament took place in 2011, it was hyped as an opportunity to become an eSports millionaire in one tournament. The five man team of Newbee actually each became eSports millionaires in one tournament. Not too bad for a season’s work.