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our story

A little less than five years ago we sallied on a journey, packed with Dota2 action, that took us from Commerzbank-Arena in Frankfurt to New York’s Madison Square Garden and the Genting Highlands. Kicking off the champions’ dance in 2014, Invictus Gaming conquered the trophy in Frankfurt, thus creating a new landmark for the Dota2 competitive scene; the ESL One series. Ever since, alongside thousands of fans, we got the chance to witness some of the greatest Dota2 memories. 2016, more than 10.000 Dota2 fans got to watch Vega Squadron bring Team Secret to their knees in New York. 

A year later, in the world’s first ever DPC Major, we all got chills when snatched the golden medal out of Secrets’ hands! In  Over the course of 2017 and 2018 both and Team Secret continued to win trophies in locations such as Katowice, Birmingham and Hamburg. In early 2019 ESL One made its way to India as a result of our ambition to bring esports to fans from every corner of the globe. This year ESL One once again returns to the country it all started in, Germany, for the biggest Dota 2 festival in Europe! Who will lift the Hamburg trophy and be crowned the 16th ESL One Champion?

ready for some feels?

check out our recaps from the last 5 years!

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ESL ONE Hamburg 2018

Coming into the end of 2018, Team Secret were struggling to find huge success in any shape or form. They had placed 5th at ESL One Katowice and 3rd at ESL One Genting at the start of the year, and in 8 months had only won one notable tournament. Bombing out of The International at 5th place, it was clear to many that Team Secret needed a serious reshuffle if things were to improve. The relatively unknown Nisha came into Pos 1, while the famous Swede zai was signed up for Pos 3. On paper it looked promising, but fans weren’t sure if the new team was enough to change Team Secret’s performance. What followed was the birth of one of the strongest Dota 2 teams ever seen- and it all started at ESL One Hamburg 2018. Despite losing to their arch-enemies in the early stages of the Upper Bracket, Team Secret brought it back by destroying EG and paiN Gaming 2-0 in the Lower Bracket, culminating in a Lower Bracket Finals between them and This time, Team Secret weren’t going to be outdone. After wiping the CIS team 2-0, the newly-reshuffled team went on to beat Vici Gaming 3-2 in a nail-biting Grand Finals. Since then Team Secret has dominated the Dota 2 scene and won nearly every major tournament they’ve been a part of.

ESL ONE Hamburg 2017

Throughout 2017 exhibited impeccable performance, rising slowly yet steadily from the bottom to the top of the ladder. Even though they had to overcome their demons from the past, the new bears played consistently throughout every event they participated, scoring a barrage of first and second place finishes all year round, culminating in them conquering ESL One Hamburg. On their way to claiming the trophy, VP had to face some of the strongest teams from across all regions, including Newbee, Team Liquid and Secret, but eventually their aggressive, yet respectful, gameplay prevailed all of their opponents and single handedly earned them the first DPC points of the season. Right off the bat, VP showed no signs of slowing down, rampaging through the Group Stage and the Playoffs, losing just one game against Liquid and Newbee respectively, but apparently that wasn’t enough to put them on a stop as they were determined to have their name engraved as an ESL One Dota2 champion.
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ESL ONE Frankfurt 2016

Within less than a year, Notail’s OG went on to grow from underdogs to one of the major TI6 champions’ title contenders. OG started to show their true potential during late 2015, when they conquered Valve’s first ever Major, the Frankfurt Major, while from that point onwards, they just kept on sweeping through first places like it was dust from the floor. Coming into ESL One Frankfurt 2016, OG’s tremendous momentum just kept on rolling with them, as they managed to trample over Liquid at the semifinals easily, while their impeccable performance against Na’Vi at the Grand Finals was nothing short of an eye-candy. Having the crowd roaring their name and their confidence hitting the roof, OG lifted the trophy in Commerzbank-Arena and brought home the staggering amount of $157,000.

ESL ONE Frankfurt 2015

After having almost a full year of pure dominance in the Dota 2 scene, the Chinese teams started to struggle to remain on top and other teams saw the opportunity to surpass them. The rise of 2015 saw the upsurge of one of the - soon to be - strongest teams in the whole world to date. Team Secret, after becoming one of the three teams to receive a direct invite to join the stage at Commerzbank-Arena, breezed through both the quarterfinals and the semifinals with confident 2-0 scores against Fnatic and the former ESL One Frankfurt title holders, Invictus Gaming, came face to face with the American titans, Evil Geniuses. But, it wasn’t their time to shine bright yet. Οver a million concurrent viewers watched Team Secret mopping the floor with EG, and eventually getting that most wanted golden medal for themselves

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ESL ONE Frankfurt 2014

A staggering amount of 22,000 eyes at Commerzbank-Arena in Frankfurt, watched Invictus Gaming rampaging through ESL’s first ever rendition of the One series for Dota2. Following their barrage of first and second place finishes throughout the year, the Chinese powerhouse came into Frankfurt with the guts to conquer another title and further strengthen the Chinese dominance in the Dota2 scene. Despite not receiving a direct invite for the event, iG secured their spot after scoring an easy 3-1 win over LGD at the Chinese qualifiers. Coming into the main event, no team, not even the soon to be TI5 winners, Evil Geniuses, managed to stop them from stomping over their heroes and claiming the lion’s share of the $210,000 prize pool.