‘Chiu on This’ is a short and regular opinion blast
You can say what you want about last year’s DPC. There was no particular distinguishing factors between Majors and Minors beyond the points. Events were stacked up on top of each other. The special meaning that was once granted to Majors wasn’t quite there. All of that is true, but it also gave an incredible amount of chances to all teams involved. No one could say that they had one bad tournament or one bad weekend and that was why they couldn’t get the points they needed.
In the case of the new DPC, it’s possible. Last year there were 11 Majors and 11 Minors with minors giving a pretty decent amount of points. This year there are 5 Majors with the bulk of all points coming from the Major. Last year, Minors gave out 300 points to a Majors 1500. This year, Minors give out 500 points to the Majors 15000.
While this is completely fine for the best teams, it becomes incredibly fragile for the mid-tier of teams. Teams that don’t have the consistency to perform to their best level every day. With teams like those, they can have one bad qualifier or one bad weekend at the Major or Minor and they’re out for a fifth of the year.
So that is why it’s worth thinking about how the DPC qualifies teams. In the current model, it works like this:
3 EU slots
3 NA slots
3 CN slots
2 CIS slots
2 SEA slots
2 SA slots
1 Minor slot
While that looks good in theory, in reality the team strenght of each region can vary month by month. There could be a month where five EU teams are in the top 16 of the world or where five Chinese teams are the top 16 in the world. The minor slot tries to auto correct that to some degree, but it isn’t perfect.
PPD threw out the proposal of top 4 invites from the previous Major with 2 slots per region. This allots to:
While it looks fine on paper, it essentially removes the Minor slot. I think a more elegant solution might be to do 3 invites and 1 minor slot, so that you still include the minors and it gives the third-fourth place match something extra to fight for. This is something he later tweeted after considering the options:
Top 3 invites. 2 per region. + Minor winner.
— Peter Dager (@Peterpandam) November 12, 2018
My personal ideal solution (working with the assumption that I cannot lower the amount of regional slots below 2) is:
2 EU slots
2 CN slots
2 NA slots
2 CIS slots
2 SEA Slots
2 SA slot
4 Minor Slots
To make this work however, I think you need to change two things about the Minors. The first is that you have to make them open. That means an old school style tournament like MLG or DreamHack opens. So long as the team and players can fly out, compete, and register, they are allowed to play. The second stipulation I’d make for this is that you have to use a comprehensive format. My personal choice would be to use the complete Swiss System that MtG uses with bo3s.
If that isn’t possible, then I think the PPD proposal with 3 invites and the minor slot instead of 4 invites works best as it requires the least amount of change and is the best compromise between trying to get the best teams and trying to give all teams the most opportunity possible.