Over the years, the Radiant side of the map is said to have more territorial advantage compared to the Dire side. It is well known to be the light side of justice that should defeat the dark side of chaos. Or at least that's what fans believe, especially after the Dota: Dragon's Blood series.

From a competitive perspective, Dire's side is known to bring more wins over the opposition. But does it? Is the Dire side really have the most significant territorial advantage over the Radiant? Let's find out below!

Does it Really Exist in Pro Games?

The main difference between a player and a professional is relatively simple, their coordination and knowledge throughout the game, as professional teams are more likely to consider their side in the draft. That is not the case for casual players.

While it's true that Radiant has better control over Roshan and arguably better ward spots, the Dire side has better jungle, which makes stacking multiple camps much easier. However, Radiant's upper midlane lane is often a tricky area that pro teams can easily exploit.

In conclusion, both sides have each advantages and disadvantages, making both sides relatively “balanced,” given that both teams have a vast knowledge of the map they’re playing. But is it really the case? First, let’s take a look at some of the recent plays.

Arlington Major UB Quarterfinals: BOOM Esports vs PSG.LGD 

In the first game, both teams seem relatively even when it comes to laning and clearing the camps. However, we can see that BOOM didn’t do as well as expected when facing Ame’s Faceless Void. As the game progressed, the beast also seemed unusually aggressive and nervous, objectively losing the game at minute 34.

The second game, however, seemingly didn’t try to hold itself, PSG.LGD straight up using their ideal three cores to wreak the beast once again. While BOOM showed extra concern for punishing the enemy’s mistake to hold their current position. 

Unfortunately, however, as both teams began to interact, PSG.LGD's stronger matchup started to become more concerning. As the game progressed, the Chinese squad successfully ended the game at minute 40.

Arlington Major UB Quarterfinals: Entity vs OG

In the first game, both teams used a cheese pick (OG Esports took Huskar for ATF, and Entity brought Visage for Tobi) to snowball. Though the duel was won by Fishman et al., who were able to dominate OG from the laning phase to the end.

However, even though the rotation of bzm was able to make a foom for ATF, at the same time, OG is also seemed to heavily pressured by Entity's perfect teamfight execution. Forced them to surrender the map at minute 27.

Not so much difference, for the second game, Entity is once again attempting to use the same strategy as the first game by taking Visage, proving he was capable of killing through the defense of the European squad.

However, this time, because of ATF's exceptional farming and their skills to outperform Entity in the teamfight, OG managed to balance the position after leveling Entity’s structure at minute 42.

Because of this, in their final game, both teams started to actually play rather passively to maximize each resource until minute 17. As OG finally launched its grand attack, that successfully kidnapped three of MeTTpuM's players and turned the momentum in their favor. Eventually, giving the game at minute 30.

Arlington Major Upper Bracket Semifinals: PSG.LGD vs OG

In the first game, PSG.LGD team coup was risky and questionable, with Juggernaut, Pangolier, and Slardar supported by Snapfire and Alchemist. OG, on the other hand, played his usual aggressive game with Bloodseeker, Troll Warlord, Storm Spirit, as well as Io and Chen for healing aid.

It was the first and only time that PSG.LGD was beaten in this tournament. They were just taken out very clearly and doubled over. OG gave them no wiggle room and jumped at every opportunity.

In the second game however, PSG.LGD started to take things more seriously with the two TI finalists picking Spectre, Pudge, Beastmaster, Marci, and Viper, while OG opted for a team fight based on Puck, Elder Titan, and Tiny, along with a Slardar and Nature's Prophet for damage.

After successfully taking OG by surprise, It didn't take long for the Chinese giants to enter OG's base, and after 34 minutes the Europeans were knocked out of the game in favor of their opponents with a score of 37-12.

In the final game, however, things changed quickly when the Chinese team finally decided to flex their prowess. Digging deep and aided by some subpar Morphling play by Artem “Yuragi” Golubiev saw them come back strongly and shake OG by the collar until they gave in minute 51.

In conclusion

Based on the handful of games, we've come to the conclusion that while there seems to be a huge advantage on the Dire side, that's not really the case from a competitive standpoint because of their overall knowledge of the game and how to use them, really that's what makes a pro player a pro.