GESC Thailand 2018 is the first Valve sanctioned event in Thailand. Nine teams will travel to Bangkok to compete for $300,000 and 300 DPC points from May 9-12. Just like in GESC’s Indonesian event, this event featured a local qualifier, this time for a team from Thailand. The nine teams will play in a round robin, with the top teams advancing to a single elimination playoff bracket. This is the last minor of the 2017-2018 DPC.
GESC Thailand will field two directly invited teams, six qualifier teams from each of the main regions, and a special Thailand regional qualifier team.
Team Secret was the first team directly invited to the GESC Thailand 2018 tournament. Team Secret had a strong start in the DPC with a second place finish at ESL Hamburg and a victory at the Dreamleague Season 8 Major. Their early momentum has secured them an impressive amount of DPC points. While they may not be mathematically guaranteed a spot at TI (yet), it is very likely that they have earned a top 8 DPC finish. Unfortunately, they have struggled in recent tournaments. Their unsuccessful techies experimentation during the Epicenter group stage helped land them into the lower bracket. There they were eliminated by Mineski and finished outside of any qualifying points.
Evil Geniuses are the second directly invited team. They won the previous GESC event 2-0 against VGJ.Thunder. EG currently sits just outside of a top 8 DPC finish, and it looks like they may have a hard time getting the points they need to move up. They failed to qualify for the MDL Changsha Major, losing 2-1 to Optic in the semi finals. After a disappointing eighth place finish at DAC, EG will look to refine their style against the weaker field at GESC before heading into the ESL One Major and the China Super Major.
GESC has embraced the spirit of the minors. This tournament will feature several teams that have had limited international presence recently and give them LAN experience. While a team like Fnatic has attended several DPC events, other teams like The Final Tribe will be at their second LAN of their team’s existence. China qualifier Keen Gaming has been on the DPC before at DAC, but they came in a disappointing last place finish. SG E-Sports and VGJ.Storm are no strangers to international competition, but both teams have struggled to show any results. Neither team will be eligible to use any DPC points earned due to roster changes following the lock date.
Vega Squadron has attended a few more DPC events, even earning qualifying points at the recent Starladder minor. They had a rocky start to the season, but their recent qualifier performance locked them into GESC and the MDL major. They favor Night Stalker, Dark Willow, and Earth Spirit to enable high tempo and aggression in the laning stage. Unfortunately they will not be participating in GESC Thailand 2018 due to visa problems. They will still be attending MDL. You can read the full statement here:
Alpha Red is an almost completely unknown team looking to prove themselves at their first DPC event. Over the past three months, they have performed well with Tusk, Lion, and Gyrocopter. While they pick Naga Siren, Tiny, and Jakiro a decent amount, they have shown minimal results with those heroes. It is unlikely they have the experience to take home many wins, but GESC will give them a chance to draft and play against experienced teams. Officials and scrims from the event will be incredibly helpful for the local team and some experience in the tier two scene.
GESC Thailand 2018 is only the second event of the DPC that has featured a nine team format. Starting on May 9th, every team will play each other in a best-of-one (bo1) round robin. The top six teams advance to a single elimination playoff, with the top two teams seeded directly into the semi finals. The playoffs are best-of-three (bo3) with the finals a bo5 on May 12th.