DOTA 2 Rulebook

  • Rulebook

Last Modified: February 21, 2020

These rules are subject to change at the administrator’s discretion. If rules should change, all captains will be notified accordingly.

The Handbook’s General Rules apply to all CEA games, please read them first!

I. DOTA 2 Overview

  1. Player Eligibility: All players participating in Dota 2 competitions must have an active account in good standing linked to the CEA tournament management platform. Only registered team members playing under their own account are allowed to play for a team.
  2. Team Roster Size: A team may start the season with 5-12 participants. Rules for qualifications for rostered members can be found in CEA general rules.
    1. After the beginning of Regular Season play (Week 1 matches), a player rostered on a team may not transfer to another roster within the same company for the same game with out the Game Lead's approval.
      1. The main circumstance permitting a transfer would be a team losing players and falling below the minimum team size.
      2. Companies with multiple teams playing the same game may have players on multiple rosters as outlined in the general rules under “Team Eligibility.” Being a floater is not considered transferring.
    2. After Week 5, removing players from the roster does not free up additional spots.
  3. Registration: The Dota 2 registration fee will be $200 per team.
  4. Game Version: All players must have their game up to date with the latest patch.
  5. Weekly Structure:
    1. Monday: Matchups for the following weekend are distributed (assuming all previous round match results have been entered). Captains should make contact, add each other on Steam, discuss reschedules if needed.
    2. Saturday : All matches are played on Saturday starting at 12pm Pacific (3pm Eastern).
  6. Season Format: For Spring 2020 the season format will follow the Unseeded format as outlined in the general handbook.
    • Week 1-4: Unseeded Swiss
    • Week 5-7: Round robin
    • Week 8: Cross play
    • Week 9-12: Single elimination playoffs
  7. Day of Match protocol: CEA will not use Battlebot.
    1. Teams will each form a party in the client. One team captain or representative from each team will add each other on Steam. The Home team will create a custom lobby and the Away team will join that lobby, each bringing their party with them.
    2. Teams should verify lobby settings are correct as per II.1.3.
    3. The Away team representative will type into chat either "heads" or "tails". The Home team representative will then type "/flip" into the lobby chat, producing a coin flip. The winner of that coin flip will select the server (either US-West or US-East) for the first game in a series. For the remainder of the series (in a best-of-three), the loser of the previous game will select the server (either US-West or US-East).

II. Rules

  1. Game Mode: 5v5 Captain’s Mode via Custom Game. Selection Priority will be set to Automatic (Coin Toss).
  2. Game Winner: The winning team is defined as the team that destroys their opponent's Ancient first, or forces their opponents to surrender. There is no time limit.
  3. Series Length: Matches will be best-of-one(1) during the regular season. Matches will be a best-of-three(3) for playoffs and elimination rounds.
  4. Restrictions: There are currently no item or hero restrictions.
  5. Home/Away team: Home and Away teams will be assigned weekly through the Guilded interface.
    1. During the regular season, the team on the left side of the matchup page is the Home team. The team on the right side is Away. During playoffs, the team with the higher seed (#1 is higher than #2) is the Home team.
    2. Selection Priority Automatic will handle side and pick selections. I.7.3 will handle server selection (US-East or US-West).
  6. Bans/Picks: Snake draft format enforced by Captain’s Mode. Only heroes available in Captain’s Mode will be allowed.
  7. Roster: Players are allowed to switch during a set (e.g. in the middle of a Bo3). Opponents are allowed an additional 5 minutes before match start to confer about any changes in strategy.
  8. Referees: While referees (i.e. players or volunteers from other teams) are not required, they are heavily encouraged to help facilitate the games. Casters may act as referees.
  9. Spectator slots: In the event there are no referees, each team may have at most one non-starting player occupy the spectator slot. The delay will be set to 2 minutes.
  10. Scheduling/Forfeits: The first game of each round must begin at the specified time. See [General Rules] in the handbook for rescheduling rules and email: Scheduling changes must be submitted CEA Discord server ( by the team captain in the #reschedule-reporting channel if a reschedule is agreed upon by both teams. Forfeits will be reported to the #forfeit-reporting channel in the CEA Discord server by the team captain
  11. Replays: The CEA requires the winning team of each Dota 2 match to save and submit all replays through the website.
    1. Penalty escalation for missing replays:
      1. Warning
      2. Loss of game (for each game replay missed)
      3. Loss of match
    2. Reference:

III. Technical Issues

  1. Stoppage of Play
    1. A player experiencing technical issues on either team may pause at any time to address those issues, or call for a restart of the game prior to Game of Record (see below) being established for significant issues.
    2. The player pausing or requesting a restart must be experiencing one of the following: a hardware malfunction (e.g. mouse, keyboard, screen, audio equipment), physical disruption (e.g. breaking furniture), or game configuration problems (e.g. issues with controls, settings, keybinds).
    3. A team may also pause to allow time for a teammate to reconnect after an unintentional disconnect
    4. Pauses should be limited to problems that can be solved in 1 minute, more time may be provided at opponent’s discretion
    5. They must then declare in all-chat the reason for the pause, or the request for a restart. In the event of a restart, the game should be paused and the Game Lead should be contacted immediately. In the event of pause abuse (use of pausing that affects game outcome without conforming to Stoppage of Play 2), the Game Lead should be contacted after the match.
    6. In the event of a game server crash, the Game Lead will determine next steps.
  2. Game of Record
    1. A game of record ("GOR") refers to a game where all ten players have loaded and which has progressed to a point of meaningful interaction between opposing teams. Prior to this point, if a serious issue has occurred, players should pause the game and contact the Game Lead to assess the situation. Once a game attains GOR status, the game will be considered as "official" from that point onward. After the establishment of GOR, game restarts will be allowed only with a Game Lead approval.
    2. Examples of conditions which establish GOR:
      1. Any attack or ability is landed on creeps, neutral creeps, structures, or on a Hero by an opposing Hero
      2. Line-of-sight is established between players on opposing teams
      3. Setting foot in or establishing vision in opponent’s jungle by either team, which includes either leaving the river or entering brush connected to enemy jungle.
      4. Game timer reaches two minutes (00:02:00)

IV. Contact Info

  1. Guilded Server: 
  2. Discord Server:
  3. Email Contacts:
    1. Game and Rules related:
    2. Business, money, and sponsorship related:
    3. Other: