Dota 2 is a MOBA video game developed and published by Valve Entertainment, a genre derived from Real-Time Strategy games with little RPG and action/fighting game influences. More specifically, DOTA was the first MOBA that pioneered the genre as a mod made in the Warcraft III editor. Dota 2 is also one of the largest Esports in the world.

The Dota 2 betting community has also been growing exponentially, providing an exciting new avenue to cash in on your Dota 2 expertise. In this guide, we will look into how to start betting on Dota 2 matches and provide tips on how to be successful at it. 


Top Esports Bookmakers
How to bet on Dota 2
Game Mechanics
Game Modes
Dota 2 Betting
Top Betting Tips
Payment Methods
Player Support
Dota 2 Tournaments
The International
Dota Pro Circuit (DPC)
Country & State Guides
Learn-to-Bet Guides
Dota 2 Betting FAQs



Dota (Defense of the Ancients) was initially created as a mod for Warcraft 3: Reign of Chaos and Frozen Throne. It was created by a bunch of Warcraft 3 players where it was passed around to different people over time where it finally ended up in the hands of “Icefrog”. Icefrog tried to balance and innovate the map for a long while until Valve picked up the game after seeing it’s potential, and invited Icefrog to help them create Dota 2. Valve released Dota 2 in July 2013.

Dota 2 has one of the biggest betting markets in Esports. Like Valve’s other property CS:GO, Dota 2 has its own ecosystem of in-game cosmetics that can be traded between players or real-life money.

Real Money Betting:

You can bet for real money on Dota 2 tournaments at various sites. To start your betting safely and benefit from a sizeable welcome bonus, we would recommend checking out the sportsbooks we partnered with.

Our partnered Esports bookmakers will let you wager on outcomes of various Dota 2 tournaments and matches like the winner of a match or tournament, or how far a team will go in the tournament. Dota 2 has a very active Esports scene so you will always find games to bet on.

Fantasy Betting:

Some websites such as Draftkings offer fantasy league betting on various Esports where players create their own roster of pro players and are awarded points based on their performance. This is a safe way of betting on your favorite Esports.

Cosmetics Betting:

Hero cosmetic items are a highly sought after commodity in Dota 2. A cosmetic price can range from a few cents to thousands of dollars. Many websites allow players to wager their owned hero cosmetic skins, acting as a currency. This is one way that Dota 2 betting can differ from other Esports betting. Skins betting has it’s own betting and gambling ecosystem.

Ways to bet on Dota 2 gameplay:

  • Event Finalist:
    In this type of bet, a bettor predicts the team that he thinks will qualify for the tournament finals.
  • Event Winner:
    In this type of bet, the bettor predicts the overall winner of the tournament.
  • Match-winner: As obvious, here you predict the winner of a certain Dota match.
  • Totals: In Dota 2, placing total bets means that wagering on a total number of kills by both teams in a single game.
  • Total Number of Rounds to be Played: Here, you’ll be betting on the number of rounds before either team wins the map. When either team has won, and if the no. of rounds played does not exceed your prediction, you win the bet.

Dota 2 – Gameplay and Mechanics

Dota 2, like most MOBAs, typically only puts the player in control of one unit known as a Hero instead of dozens or hundreds of units. The game puts a team of five players (5 Heroes) in a battle arena type map versus another team of five players. Each team tries to destroy the other team’s Ancient (located in their respective bases) before the other.

Each player chooses a Hero character from a roster of 100+ Heroes. Each hero has unique abilities and is centered around a “role”. These roles will vary from Carry to Support, Disabler to Nuker.

The two bases or “Ancients” are connected by 3 pathways splitting in different directions, that meet in the middle. AI-controlled units or “creep waves” are sent along these paths to attack the enemy towers and structures. These paths are referred to as “lanes”, namely Top, mid, and bottom lanes.

Towers are structures placed at choke points on the paths that attack any enemy faction unit. They defend the path and hold back advancing enemy creeps and heroes.

Dealing the killing blow, also called “last-hitting”, is the major source of acquiring in-game gold.

Aside from the 3 lanes, the map has jungle areas that situate neutral creep camps. These neutral creeps are not allied to any team and will attack anybody. They are an alternate source of gold and experience that can be farmed. Neutral creeps also have a small chance of dropping unique neutral items that cannot be directly purchased from the shop.

Heroes start off weak at level 1 but accumulate Experience points from killing or enemy units dying near them. As they level up, they can upgrade or acquire more abilities. During the game, the player needs to manage their item and talent builds to make their hero more effective exponentially. Which is dependent on your gold and Exp farm.

The first team to destroy the enemy Ancient wins the match.

As we mentioned earlier, all heroes are built to play certain roles in the game and can be good or bad at it to various degrees depending on their skills or matchups. A hero can have several different roles at once instead of just one. Heroes are classified as:

  • Carries start as weak heroes who progress to become the most powerful by the end of the match. They are expected to position themselves as the lead in their respective team, driving the team to victory in the late-game stages.
  • Initiators are heroes with the most effective skills at the beginning of “team brawls,” or when a majority of the players are engaged in a single skirmish.
  • Supports are hero characters with a build that focuses on helping their teammates. These heroes make use of healing spells and other support skills.
  • Disablers are attacking-support heroes capable of imposing disabling effects on the enemy, preventing them from performing certain actions or skills.
  • Lane Supports play a flanking role in their team’s “carry” and help them kill players in the match’s early stages.
  • Durables, similar to the Tank role in an MMO, operate in a role that can withstand a substantial amount of damage compared to other heroes. This will allow us to attract attacks as a team retreats or repositions.
  • Nukers have abilities that deal with substantial damage through the use of consistent and devastating damage-dealing powers and skills.
  • Pushers are geared at destroying towers and maneuvering teams and battles for map control.
  • Escapes have special abilities that enable them to navigate the battlegrounds in unique ways.

Dota 2 Game Modes

Game Modes are various game scenarios with a specific set of rules that apply on the Dota 2 match. Each mode would require players to execute their hero selections based on how the character will fit the overarching strategy and character availability.  

  • All Pick – In this mode, all hero characters are available to be selected. The team players have up to 1 minute to select the heroes they want to play as. The option to choose a hero “randomly” is also available. A random Hero will be allocated to the player if selected, with an additional 250 gold credited to the player at match start. The All Pick mode is the standard matchmaking system.
  • Captain’s Mode – Two representative players, one leader from each team, take turns picking and banning Heroes for the represented team. When a Captain bans a hero, the character is removed from the selection pool for either team. This is the usual mode for tournament and organized matches.   
  • Single Draft – Each player selects his hero from a set of three randomly chosen options. The characters are sourced categorically, one Strength focused, one favouring Agility, and another geared towards Intelligence.
  • Random Draft – Players select a Hero from a shared pool of 20 random heroes. The players take turns to make their picks. 
  • All Random – Players are assigned a random hero each. The player can swap his assigned hero to a new random hero once.
  • Mid Only – Players can pick any hero, and the picks are not exclusive to the user. Creeps only spawn in the middle lane. This mode is great for 1v1 matchups.
  • Least Played – Players’ picks are limited to a pool of characters that they use the least. The Least Played mode promotes learning new heroes and forces everyone on equal footing. The pool limits each player’s heroes, by blocking their 40 most player heroes.
  • Random Ability Draft: Players can play games where everyone takes turns drafting random abilities. Initial hero models are randomly assigned.

Dota 2 Betting

Ways to bet on Dota 2 gameplay:

Simplest forms of bets where bookmakers offer odds on 2 teams. The bettor predicts the team he thinks will win a match. The sportsbooks will offer odds on both teams based on calculations. These odds determine the favorite/underdog and the payout. For. e.g.

Odds for Team OG and Team Secret are 1.5x and 3.4x respectively. If you bet on OG and they win the match, you earn 1.5x times your original bet. Whereas, if Team Secret wins your bet is multiplied by 3.4x times the amount.

 These bets even out the scale and provide equal value on betting either side of a lopsided matchup. This method takes points from the favorite and gives them to the underdog, where the advantage/disadvantage is calculated by the sportsbooks. 

The Spread or handicap bets are offered in Dota 2 mostly on best-of series formats where more than 1 game is played between 2 teams. For e.g. Best-of-3 matches have a default spread of +/-1.5. +1.5 for the underdog and -1.5 for the favorite that will be adjusted after the end of the game. The favorites will need to win the best-of-3 with a margin of 2-0 for the bettors to “cover” the spread and win their money.

In a best-of-5, like The International tournament finals, the spread may be set at +/- 2.5. If set at +/- 1.5 the bettors can still win with the favorites having room to drop one map at maximum. 

In Dota 2, Total bets involve betting on the total no. of games that will be played between 2 teams until victory in a best-of format. For e.g. in a best-of-3 format, you can bet on whether the total maps played will be under/over a pre-set total. The total average for Bo3 will usually be set at 2.5. If you think the matchup between both teams will be close, take the over. If you think one team is really dominant over the other, take the under.

The same applies to another type of total regarding map time. Which is basically betting how long a match will last as Dota 2 matches have no time limit until a base is destroyed. A matchup of equally skilled teams will likely make the match last longer, hence you should pick ‘over’ in that scenario. Whereas, a one-sided matchup will end up in a team likely dominating. Meaning, picking ‘under’ would be a wiser choice.  

These are special bets that focus on specific elements and occurrence of events in the game not directly related to winning or losing. These are harder to predict and usually require good depth of knowledge on the game and the players. Some examples of prop bets are:

  • Who gets the first blood of the match?
  • Which player will get the most kills?
  • Which team will have the most kills?
  • Which player/team will have a better net worth(gold) in the match?
  • Who kills Roshan first?
  • Towers destroyed before X minutes

Another common sort of bet that involves picking the tournament winners or finalists ahead of time. Quite common for big-time tournaments like the Majors and The International. Requires a ton of insight into the game, teams, players, and their performance.

These bets are placed on the occurrence of in-game events, but you are only allowed to bet once the match has begun. Live bets will enable you to make informed decisions on bets depending on which direction the match is going. For example, you can relatively predict things to go favorably for team X shortly if they have a decent economy and XP advantage over Team Y. Other popular live bet options are:

  • First Tower: You can bet on which team destroys the first tower in any of the three lanes.
  • Barracks: Bet on which teams destroy the other team’s barracks first.
  • Roshan: Roshan is a powerful special neutral creep in the game. You can bet on which team will kill Roshan first.
  • Winner: You can also bet on whom you think will win the match.

Depending on the hero lineup, some lineups will synergize better and win the early game while others are going to prevail late game. Equally, skilled team matches will likely last longer. So it is vital to take all these factors into account.


How do Odds work?

The “Odds” refers to the likelihood or chance of a specific event occurring, e.g. Team X winning over Team B. Bets placed on the basis of these odds offered by bookmakers. The odds are calculated by different sportsbooks differently. So make sure to pick a decent and reputable sportsbook with fair odds.

Odds are of various distinct types: Decimal, Fractional, American, or Implied Probability. You’ll most often come across Decimal Odds, however.

Decimal Odds

Decimal odds give you the easiest conversion from stake to

The Odds

Bet $10 with odds at 3.44

The Outcome $10 x 3.44 = $34.4 (Your $10 stake included)

The Odds

Team X (3.2) vs Team Y (1.5)

The Outcome From these odds, we can tell that the sentiment is that Team Y is expected to win(favorites) over Team X(underdogs). If Team Y wins, the return on your investment will be 1.5x times the amount invested. Whereas, if Team X pulls an upset and wins, the reward payout will be 3.2x times the invested amount.

American Odds: 

These odds are represented by numbers with a prefix (+) and minus(-) sign. The positive(+) sign is assigned to underdogs’ odds and indicates the amount won for every $100 staked on the bet. Whereas, the negative(-) odds indicate the amount you need to stake to win $100 from the bet. 

The Odds

Team X (-140)

The Outcome Team X having -140 favorite odds would mean you need to bet at least $140 on them to win $100. If you win, you get $100 and keep the invested $140.

Fractional Odds: 

These odds are marked with a fractional number, with the top number dictating how much when you invest the bottom fractional number.

Favorable odds: Odds of 6/1 – Every $1 you bet will give you a payout of $6. 

Unfavorable odds: Similarly, Odds of 1/6 – For every $6 you bet, you will receive a payout of $1. 

Implied Probability

This is a more readable way to denote odds, however, this can be highly inaccurate and is mostly just used as a reference to calculate risk.

The Odds

Team X (40%)

The Outcome Decimal odds = 100 / Probability odds. In this case: 100/40 = 2.5
A $10 stake would return $25 ($15 profit)

Tips on How to Start Betting on Dota 2

Based on the KBG team’s 10+ years of expertise in online betting, we have compiled these tips for you to guide you in your betting journey.

With that said – here’s a set of tips you want to look into before you start betting:


Tip#1: Stick to a budget –  Set a betting limit based on how much you can afford to play in any given week or month and stick to it. Online betting should not be considered as a get rich scheme. Following this, you can maintain an affordable bankroll and extend your betting journey through the fluctuations that you will experience. Remember, always bet responsibly with money you can afford to lose.

If you are a beginner, stick to proportional betting and try to avoid higher payouts on low odds such as parlay bets. Keep in mind that, greed is the enemy of an Esports bettor.


Tip#2: Learn the odds system: Given the fluctuations in the posted odds, sometimes the offered odds do not match what your read is on the game. If you can develop these edges in your own system then you will be able to identify profitable puts when betting on Dota 2. Remember that the posted odds are managed by bookmakers to initiate betting action on both sides of the match and do not necessarily indicate how good each team is compared to each other.


Tip#3: Educate yourself on the game: It is important to have a deep sense of knowledge on the game. Make sure you know the game’s mechanics and the players before you make any big bets. Learn all the rules, familiarize yourself with the game’s meta. Here’s a checklist you might want to look into to see your handle on the game:

    • New patches might allow you to bet against a strong favorite, especially if one or more of the team’s key players relied heavily on two or three heroes. If these heroes used by the players were heavily nerfed in the previous patches, a weakness might emerge as adjustments are made to the hero’s stats and skills. This might be a betting opportunity you can cease.
    • Follow teams and players and understand player form – teams and players cannot always play at their best, know your team’s history, and research recent results before placing bets. Know which players are strong with certain heroes/champions which can give them an advantage.
    • Observe Community betting –Observe the top betters and their opinion about the game, teams, players, and the meta.
    • Event Format – Depending on the format of the matches, the likelihood of certain outcomes can change. For example, a Best-of-1 has higher chances of an upset or unexpected result. A draw is very likely in a Best of 2. A Best of 5 should favor the most consistent team than an unexpected result.


Tip#4: Find the bet types you are good at: At the beginning of your betting journey aim to build confidence and expertise in a betting strategy. As you progress, observe closely which types of bets you succeed at more often. This could be a good indicator of which facets of the game you have a better understanding of. Here are some guidelines to take into account:

  • Specialize whenever possible – with so many teams and Dota 2 tournaments happening globally and annually, focus on a particular region and support your wagering with deep research. This will result in smarter betting decisions.
  • Bet selectively and objectively – you don’t need to bet on every match and you should always bet with your head rather than your heart–your favorite team may not be the favorite to win.
  • Don’t limit yourself to only major events – smaller tournaments and local events that flow into majors often include unknown teams with the potential to upset their more known rivals making for juicy wins for smart betters.
  • Don’t believe people’s information blindly and make your own decisions: Some individuals might want to throw off others’ predictions by giving out false information to sway the odds and gain higher profit for themselves. Hence it’s better not to take everything at face value and make your own end decision through research.


Payment Methods Used in Dota 2 Betting

The Esports bookmakers we partnered with will accept the usual digital payment gates that we are so used to see and use. Online payment methods such as credit cards, direct bank transfers, and PayPal are available. There are other newer options that have been gaining popularity such as eWallets and Cryptocurrencies.

Most Esports Betting sites offer various payment options to cash out, these would include:

  • Credit and Debit cards: remain the most popularly accepted means of payment across bookmaker websites. MasterCard and VISA being the most common.
  • Web Wallets: These are basically e-Wallets that allow you to transfer funds to a virtual wallet for placing bets instead of linking your credit or debit card directly. This helps you avoid giving any sensitive financial information to the bookmaker. Skrill and Neteller are some of the most widely used e-Wallets.
  • PayPal: PayPal remains one of the world’s most reliable online payment services. It helps you avoid giving your personal financial information to the bookmaker and provides an extra layer of security in transactions.
  • CryptoCurrency: Cryptocurrencies can also be used to bet on bookmaker websites. These are usually not available globally due to country-specific crypto laws but are usually used to cater to smaller regions and markets. For example, AstroPay caters to Brazil and the USA. GiroPay caters to Germany and Austria etc.
  • Direct Bank Transfers: Bookmaking websites commonly allow you to directly transfer the amount from your bank account to theirs. The betting site will provide you with its bank details.

If you’re betting with skins or cosmetics, you can also receive your payment in skins or cash out your money in in-game skins as currency. You will need to link your Steam account to the website to do so. Only certain websites provide this option.

Player Support when Betting on Dota 2

If you, at any point, need some assistance or might have any questions or concerns, the partnered sportsbooks have you covered!


The online sportsbook we recommend provides you with 24-hour around the clock customer service. Because online sportsbooks and online casinos are around the clock, open every day, there is always some form of customer service options available via email, toll-free telephone number, or an instant chat function.

These customer service representatives can assist you with anything from deposit or withdrawal issues to questions about specific Dota 2 related bets you have placed.


The International

The International is an annual Esports world championship tournament for the video game Dota 2, hosted and produced by the game’s developer, Valve. The International has been held consistently since 2011. The tournament holds 18 teams competing for The International Cup; 12 of which are enlisted directly from qualifying the Dota Pro Circuit and six from winning regional playoff brackets.

One team each from North America, South America, Southeast Asia, China, Europe, and CIS regions participate.

Prize pool: The International tournament prize pool is raised by crowdfunding from the players who purchase a Battlepass. The 2019 The International (TI9) Prize pool was crowdfunded to an amount of $34 million USD.

Significant Teams(TI 9):


  • Team Secret
  • Team Liquid
  • Ninjas in Pyjamas
  • Alliance
  • Chaos Esports Club
  • OG


  • Pro
  • Natus Vincere


  • VICI Gaming
  • LGD
  • Royal Never Give Up
  • Keen Gaming

North America:

  • Evil Geniuses
  • NewBee

Southeast Asia:

  • Mineski
  • TNC Predator
  • Fnatic

South America:

  • Infamous

Dota Pro Circuit (DPC)

The Dota Pro Circuit(DPC) is a Dota 2 professional tournament format system. It was introduced by Valve to determine which teams are eligible to obtain a direct invitation to The International tournament.

In the Dota Pro Circuit, a “Major” is a sponsored Dota 2 tournament that has 2 teams from North America, South America, Southeast Asia, Chinese, European and CIS regions. It has a minimum prize pool of $500,000 and concludes with a LAN finals.

In addition, a minor championship tier exists and follows the same rules, with a minimum prize pool of $150,000.

Teams are awarded qualifying points based on their results.The top 12 teams at the end of the season receive a direct invite to that year’s The International with a single spot reserved for one team from each region. Majors and Minors are held in pairs.


Wondering how the different U.S. States approach Esports Betting? the KGB team has provided in-depth guides on how various State or County laws stack up on casino gambling. Check out the U.S. Guide below, where we’ll investigate each state and help you in your quest to Bet Responsibly, Bet Greatly:

Esports Betting USA Country Guide


Pick your Esport, learn the dynamics of the match, and tap into the best betting strategies developed over the years. Can you build that elusive hot streak? There’s only one way to find out. Always remember, Bet Responsibly, Bet Greatly:

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You can find a ton of historical and statistical data about every player and team on Liquipedia. You can also try and tune into pro player streams on Twitch or Youtube to check out their gameplay.

To start betting on Dota 2 you first need to find a reliable sportsbook that offers betting lines for Esports. It is advised to pick licensed and regulated Esports bookmakers. To jumpstart this for you, we recommend you to check out the bookmakers we partnered with.  You’ll need to provide your personal details and proof of income to register at a sportsbook.

Dota 2 is one of the largest Esports in the world currently. It has some of the grandest tournaments in Esports with the largest prize pools. Certainly, being one of Valve entertainment’s properties it has a huge and loyal fanbase that keeps the game alive and kicking even after all these years.

This kind of engagement makes the game one of the most popular and best games to bet on. You can easily find dozens of sportsbooks that offer a variety of betting options on Dota 2.

The Dota 2 betting market is one of the most active and lucrative markets in the industry. Finding sportsbooks for Dota 2 wagers is really easy. There are Majors conducted almost all around the year to bet on. If you’re smart with your analysis and money, you can make quite a decent amount of money from Dota 2 betting.