It’s no secret that The International 2022 Battle Pass has underwhelmed and performed well below expectations. The new refreshed and watered-down edition has received a mixed reception from the Dota 2 player base. With a plethora of missing features and a three-month release delay, The International 2022 Battle Pass has failed to entice the broader Dota 2 audience compared to its predecessors. Although its two-part scheme is a nice change, not even the promise of Frostivus has mellowed down the overall feeling of disappointment around it. So the question arises, were TeaGuvnor’s 16,905 incantations all for naught?

Everything Missing From The International 2022 Battle Pass

When we described The International 2022 Battle Pass as watered-down, we were sadly not kidding. Compared to the last two record-breaking editions, the amount of features missing from this year’s battle pass is quite staggering. Whether you’re upset about the lack of cosmetics, gambling features, or the absence of Baby Roshan and the Roshan replica, there’s plenty to be upset about.

Battle Pass Rylai's Blessing

Here are some key features that have drawn the ire of the Dota 2 player base:

  • Immortal Treasure III – The International 2022 Battle Pass will be the first one since 2015 that will not include a third immortal chest.
  • Leveling Mechanics – The lack of in-game portals, shovels, and in-match wagering mechanics will make the process of leveling The International 2022 Battle Pass much harder than in previous years.
  • The Third Arcana – Compared to the previous Battle Pass, this year’s edition will have one Arcana less in comparison.
  • Gambling Mechanics – Rylai’s Blessing and the Secret Shop were definitely one of the most well-liked features from the previous Battle Pass.
  • Custom Creeps and Terrain – Ever since their introduction, these cosmetics almost instantaneously became both must-haves and fan favorites.
  • Baby Roshan – Baby Roshans have almost always been among the most desired and sought-after couriers in the game.
  • Roshan Replica – The reward for reaching a Battle Pass level of 2000 is one of the rarest Dota 2 collectibles in existence.

Where Else Does It Fall Short Of Expectation?

Apart from the lack of content, the main issue this year’s Battle Pass has is timing. While previous iterations were released on average four months before the start of TI, this year’s Battle Pass was released a mere forty days before the event. Coupled with its lackluster content, the prolonged wait time further added to the overall feeling of disappointment around it.

Taking into account that 25% of all Battle Pass purchases are funneled directly into The International prize pool, the effects of such a short window could have drastic consequences for its total.

Furthermore, the lack of previously seen leveling mechanics will make increasing your overall Battle Pass level a far more tedious task than ever. Without any of those mechanics, players will be inclined to invest even more money into it, a fact that many have found to be offputting, to say the least. The upcoming Battle Level Bundle will likely be more important than ever for all of those looking to achieve a high Battle Pass level.

Battle Level Bundle
Image Credits | Dota 2

That conclusion brings us to an even bigger issue – leveling rewards. Getting that prized Void or Razor Arcana seems like something not just purely obtainable through grinding. Instead, you will have to invest relatively large sums of money to get them. All of this makes this year’s Battle Pass look more like a cash grab than a full-fledged celebration of one of esports’ biggest events.

How This Will Affect The International 2022 Prize Pool?

Quite significantly if we’re being dead honest, and not in a good way. While it’s not off to the worst of starts, the revenue The International 2022 Battle Pass has generated so far falls well behind the last two events. Interest in obtaining the Battle Pass seems to have dwindled in comparison to the previous couple of years. Looking at the average number of players, they seem to be on par with the numbers from the previous two Battle Passes. So if you’re asking the question, no, Dota 2 is still not dead by any means.

The International 2022 Prize Pool
The International 2022’s Prize Pool Falls Short Of The Previous Two Iterations | Image Credits | Dota 2 Prize Pool Tracker

Ultimately, the decreased interest, coupled with the imminent arrival of The International 2022 almost definitely mean that this year’s prize pool will be smaller than in previous years. With the Battle Pass running all the way until January, Valve could try to offset the difference by adding to the prize pool well after the event has concluded. Although they might try to pull a rabbit out of a hot, we seriously doubt that even Bruno the Statsman’s escapades could help them salvage this situation.

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