AI program beats Dota 2 World Champions - and no one is safe - Dexerto

AI program beats Dota 2 World Champions – and no one is safe

Published: 13/Apr/2019 23:08 Updated: 13/Apr/2019 23:21

by Virginia Glaze


Can a computer beat an esports professional at their own game? The answer is yes, apparently, as one Artificial Intelligence program managed to beat out Dota 2 world champions in a surprising turn of events.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s nonprofit OpenAI program has developed an Artificial Intelligence trained to play Dota 2, which went head to head with The International’s 2018 champions, OG on April 13.

The two threw down at the OpenAI Five Finals in San Francisco, California in a bid to see who would come out on top – but things didn’t pan out as many fans, players, and analysts had expected.

Red Bull EsportsThe International 2018 champions OG tested their mettle against an Artificial Intelligence program – which concluded with a surprising turn of events.

Artificial Intelligence handicaps

Five pros from OG clashed with five Artificial Intelligence bots from OpenAI in a best-of-three tournament format; however, due to the bots’ “reinforcement learning” algorithm and Dota 2’s staggering number of potential variables in-game, a character cap was imposed on each team, limiting the number of characters used to 17 per squad.

Additionally, OpenAI imposed the “Captain’s Draft” game mode and disabled illusion and summoning capabilities, further limiting the outrageous number of possibilities the program would have to learn throughout the duration of their match.

Can a robot write a symphony?

Despite OG’s prowess, OpenAI Five managed to take the first match of the day after employing comparatively aggressive strategies, such as spending in-game currency to revive downed teammates early on in the match.

That’s not all; OpenAI went on to win the set, nearly halving the time it took to win its first game in the second match, bullying OG as they made their way across the map.

Dota 2 player and AI specialist Mike Cook live-tweeted the event with insightful analysis of their battle, noting major differences in the bots’ choices vs what human players consider to be the “right” course of action in certain instances.

Team OG themselves seemed to take their loss in good spirits, dubbing themselves #TeamHuman and promising to come back even stronger next time.

OpenAI’s victory saw a slew of incredulous reactions across Twitter, with the likes of esports analyst Rod Breslau and others wondering where AI is headed next, considering this turn of events.

Of course, AI in video games is nothing new; plenty of titles pit players against a computer, most notably in fighting games, as a means of training. With OpenAI’s win under its belt, there’s no telling what’s next for the field in terms of competitive gaming.


Exclusive: Dota 2 legends OG bring Asian bookmakers Fun88 into esports

Published: 17/Nov/2020 7:59 Updated: 20/Nov/2020 14:15

by Adam Fitch


Fun88, the Asian bookmakers who sponsor football club Newcastle United, have entered esports through a deal with OG.

The two-time champions of The International, the best-paying tournament series in esports, have signed a multi-year partnership with the betting company.

The partnership will see Fun88 work with the organization to “bring fans closer to the Dota 2 action” through community interactions and “pre-play, real-time, and post-match insights.”

The bookmakers will also have their logo shown on the shoulder of jerseys worn by the legendary Dota 2 players.

OG N0tail The International 2019
OG are the defending The International champions.

OG’s well-known roster includes Johan ‘N0tail’ Sundsteni, Martin ‘Saksa’ Sazdov, Sébastien ‘Ceb’ Debs, Topias ‘Topson’ Taavitsainen, and Yeik ‘MidOne’ Nai Zheng.

They are the current defending world champions having won The International in both 2018 and 2019, with this year’s iteration of the tournament being delayed due to the global health situation.

“OG Esports’ legacy and story in Dota is one of the most legendary stories in esports and, because of this, we have been able to break into the mainstream and our story has been documented in many mediums — articles, magazines, and several documentaries,” JMR Luna, CEO of OG, told Dexerto. “Following this trajectory, OG has become the breach for new non-endemic companies that want to break into this space.”

“Fun88 have a great track record and have really invested in traditional sports, this is the next step for them as they recognize that some of the biggest competitions in the world right now are happening behind screens,” he continued. “This is a great moment for esports because we’re welcoming a new massive brand into our ecosystem which ultimately benefits everyone. We’ve worked really hard to make this happen and we’re happy we can finally announce it.”

Outside of esports, Fun88 have worked with late basketball icon Kobe Bryant and football club Tottenham Hotspur. In July 2020, they extended their sponsorship deal with Newcastle United for an undisclosed period of time.

Betting sponsors may not be new in esports, but this is the first rodeo for Fun88.