Dota 2 Roster Locks – Changes and New Teams

Dec 14, 2015

As of December 9th, all Dota 2 teams have officially signed up players and locked their rosters through the Shanghai Major in March. The last few days have seen a number of unexpected shuffles, most notably the departure of Mynuts from Alliance and the return of EGM.

Noteworthy team changes or new teams, (c) denotes captain when known. Teams can be looked up by name on Dota 2 website.


Complexity Gaming: Chessie, Limmp, Swindlemelonz (c), Handsken, Zfreek, Riser and Beef as subs

Digital Chaos: TC, Yawar, BuLba, Aui_2000, 1437 (c), Biryu and qojqva as subs

Shazam~: Mason, Ritsu, Brax, MSS, SVG, Loomdun as sub

Archon: Jeyo, monkeys-forever, Moo, Fluff (c), whitebeard


Alliance: Loda, s4 (c),  AdmiralBulldog, EGM, Akke

Team Steak Gaming: Era, slickz, syndereN, Fogged, Sealkid, with Blitz as a sub

Team Veggie Esports: Merlini, Monib, Capitalist, Maelk, Purge, with Friberg and Hann1 as subs

NO-VASELINE: Black^, YapzOr, Jonas, Mynuts, Kebap


Virtus Pro: Silent, G, DkPhobos, Lil, Fng (c), Zara as sub

Empire: XBOCT, Resolut1on, Funn1k, Alohadance, NoFear (c), Flow as sub

NaVi: DityaRa, Dendi,, Sonneiko, Artstyle (c), LebronDota and Sh4dow as subs

Elements: Illidan, GeneraL, yoky-, sqreen (c), KingR


Fnatic: ADTR, DJ, Ohaiyo, Mushi (c), Net, WinteR and Miduan as subs


Invictus Gaming: Rabbit, Ferrari_430, Luo, xdd, super (c), XuaN as sub

Newbee: Hao (c), Mu, Xiao2le, ChuaN, le, Banana as sub

Who has come out on top in the post-Frankfurt shuffle?

Many long-time Alliance fans are thrilled to see the return of EGM. He was kicked from the team last September as Alliance desperately looked to find the combo that would bring them back to tier 1 status. He briefly rejoined from January to May of 2015. After rotating through a number of different players, Alliance have come full circle to their TI3/TI4 roster once again. Despite having some recent success in minor tournaments since August, the team has elected to drop Mynuts from the roster (for the second time, Mynuts played with Alliance from 1/7/2015 – 1/26/2015 as well). EGM rejoins them, leaving 4 Clovers & a Leprechaun. The five players currently on the roster are veteran players who are used to playing with each other; some would argue that since this combination hasn’t worked out so well in the past it is likely to fail once more.

NaVi, possibly the most well-known Dota 2 organization in the world, disbanded briefly during October. Despite fielding veteran players Dendi and XBOCT they failed to see any real success this year aside from a second place finish in ASUS ROG DreamLeague. XBOCT has left the organization and joined Team Empire instead alongside Funn1k.

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Virtus Pro has undergone some major changes this year. After releasing the main VP squad the organization re-branded Virtus Pro Polar as the primary team earlier this year. After several lackluster performances in the latter half of 2015 the team replaced Illidan with Silent from Team Empire in the position 1 slot. If their performance at The Summit 4 is any indicator of their future together it certainly seems that they made the correct choice.

Newbee: After winning TI4 and placing first in a few minor tournaments, Newbee more or less faded from view in the professional scene. They received a direct invite and placed a disappointing 13-16th at TI5. The addition of ChuaN, a longtime Invictus Gaming player, may be what reinvigorates the squad.

Teams will be able to change players again after the Shanghai Major concludes in March. Before the roster lock system was implemented, teams would sometimes shuffle through several players in a short period of time, making it difficult for fans to follow. Many people criticize this approach; they believe it would be more beneficial for squads to work on team cohesion as opposed to swapping out a player or two every time a team does not achieve great results in a tournament. This new system is designed to prevent some of the roster instability and provide a better experience for fans.

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Kara Jacobacci
Kara has been following professional DotA2 since the TI4 qualifiers. When not watching matches on Twitch, she can be found working (or attempting to find work) as a geologist and enjoying nature.
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