Following every International, there is sure to be a roster shuffle. Teams can perform well all year around, but not performing on the biggest stage of the year and possibly the players' lives can lead even the best teams to split apart. Even if a team does win the trophy, players are not assured to stay on the team either, as seen from EG and Aui_2000 after TI5.
This year, the shuffle remained much calmer, with more minor roster adjustments, rather than big and crazy shuffles. In fact, a lot of teams decided to stick together. TI7 champions Team Liquid will not make any roster changes anytime soon. CIS powerhouse Virtus.pro even announced going into TI that they had extended the contracts with all 5 players, binding them until the end of 2018. Chinese rising stars LGD.Forever Young have also decided to not make any roster changes, much like SEA fan favorite TNC Pro Team. And lastly, TI7 runner up Newbee is also expected to not make any changes.
Despite a rather lackluster performance at The International, Evil Geniuses had a good season, sporting 4 LAN titles and placing among the top 4 at both Majors. Perhaps the team would’ve even stayed together, but support player Ludwig ‘zai’ Wahlberg has decided to leave the team to pursue other options. A world class player such as zai is difficult to replace, but EG found a suitable replacement within their own ranks. Veteran Clinton ‘Fear’ Loomis has come out of retirement and will resume the role of the captain and the 5 position support, moving Andreas Franck ‘Cr1t-’ Nielsen back to the dedicated 4 position with which he rose to fame during his time with OG.
Former Evil Geniuses captain and CEO Peter ‘Peterpandam’ Dager has also decided to resume his professional player career and has built a new squad with former teammate zai. Joining them will be former Team Freedom midplayer Quinn ‘CCnC’ Callahan, as well as former Planet Odd captain Rasmus ‘MISERY’ Filipsen. Rounding out the line-up will be former Na’Vi carry and veteran Per Anders ‘Pajkatt’ Olsson Lille. Both MiSeRy- and Pajkatt have been long-term teammates previously, playing together in LGD.int and in Team Dog/mousesports just a few years ago.
The team has no name yet, but is operating as "The Dire" for now and it is also unclear as to which region they will compete in.
Four times Major champion continues to be unable to succeed at The International and despite a strong season overall, the team has made a roster change following the event. Australian mid laner Anathan ‘ana’ Pham is set to take a break this season. Replacing him will be Ukrainian superstar Roman ‘Resolut1on’ Fomynok, who impressed at TI7 by being an integral part in Team Empire’s top 8 run, despite being a last-minute stand-in.
By joining OG, Resolut1on will return to competing in Europe after spending over a year in the United States playing for Digital Chaos/Planet Odd. Resolut1on originally broke into the Dota 2 scene as a mid laner and captain, most notably for Team Empire with who he only placed 9th-12th at TI5.
After not qualifying for the Boston Major, the reformed Secret with Khezu and later with Yazied 'YapzOr' Jaradat looked quite strong, topping the Swiss group stage in Kiev and doing well at Epicenter and The Summit 7, but the team was unable to perform at the stage that mattered. Following TI7, Secret swiftly announced the departure of MP and Khezu. Replacing them will be Marcus 'Ace' Hoelgaard and Adrian 'Fata' Trinks. The former Team Liquid and Cloud 9 player Fata, despite largely known as carry and mid laner, is set to take on the offlane for Secret. Ace is a Danish player who's yet to play at a Valve event, but together with Cloud 9/Danish Bears he lifted the trophy at WESG 2016.
Fnatic has had a disastrous year, unable to find a stable roster and failing to qualify for both the Boston and the Kiev Major. After gathering a South-East Asian all-star team, Fnatic managed to qualify for The International. The team was unable to live up to expectations and placed last, which is why it is no surprise that the organization decided to rebuild the team from the ground up. Keeping the core of Chong Xin ‘Ohaiyo’ Khoo and Djardel Jicko ‘DJ’ Mampusti, Fnatic acquired international assistance in the form of fan favorite and former Cloud 9/Team NP captain and carry Jacky ‘EternaLEnVy’ Mao and Swedish support Johan ‘pieliedie’ Astrom. EternalEnvy and Pieliedie had a similar TI experience to Fnatic, as their team heavily underperformed and placed 13th-16th. Playing the mid lane will be Swedish youngster Steve ‘Xcalibur’ Ye. Xcalibur has already played for Fnatic before, standing in for the European squad in 2014.
The team is set to compete in South-East Asia.
Earlier this year, Filipino esports organization Mineski presented South-East Asian superstar Chai 'Mushi' Yee Fung as their new captain, looking to rebuild the brands reputation and success with him. Unfortunately, the team did not qualify for TI7, but Mineski didn't wait until after TI7 to rebuild a new team. Even before TI7 began, Mineski tried out players and were able to present a proven line-up just after The International. Mushi will be joined by Singaporean superstar and his former teammate Daryl Koh '冰冰冰' Pei Xiang, who's bringing along his former Faceless teammate Anucha 'Jabz' Jirawong, who's returned to the support position. Ex-Rave player Michael 'ninjaboogie' Ross Jr. and Malaysian mid Kam 'Moonn' Boon Seng, formerly of WG.Unity, round out the line-up.
Chinese powerhouse LGD-Gaming had a strong performance with their roster, but as offlaner Ren ‘eLeVen’ Yangwei moved on, LGD saw themselves forced to find a suitable replacement. Fan favorite Xu ‘fy’ Linsen will leave Vici Gaming for the first time and will also switch to the offlane position.
DAC 2017 champions Invictus Gaming had an impressive season and despite a drop-off after their DAC victory, the team managed to turn things around and still place 5th-6th at TI. They would’ve likely stuck together if carry player Xu ‘BurNing’ Zhilei hadn’t decided to take a break to spend more time with his family. Replacing him will be former Vici Gaming carry Pu ‘OoO’ Yang, who has struggled to find his form from 2015, where he placed 5th-6th at TI5 with EHOME, and was most recently on the bench for VG.
The Vici Gaming main squad has had a rough year with many roster changes, none of which helped the team achieve success. The latest iteration, including TI2 champion ChuaN and TI4 champion Hao, failed to qualify for The International and quickly disbanded. Now, Vici Gaming has built an entirely new team, moving former coach Zhang ‘LaNm’ Zhicheng to the active roster, reuniting him with his former EHOME teammates Ren ‘eLeVen’ Yangwei and Lu ‘Fenrir’ Chao. In addition, mid laner Zeng 'Ori' Jiaoyang and iG.Vitality carry Zhang 'Paparazi灬' Chengjun will join the frey. Ori has been part of the previous Vici Gaming roster, showing promising performances. Similarly, Paparazi is considered to be among the most talented cores in China, being both a mid and safe laner.
Korean players MP, QO, FoREv, Febby? and DuBu have reunited. The former MVP.Phoenix squad went their separate ways after a top 6 finish at The International 2016. None of them managed to find any notable success, QO and Febby even placed last at TI7. Now, the team looks to find their old way again.
Fan favorites Natus Vincere have, for the first time, missed The International. The team had rather disappointing performances and results throughout the entire year, which is why it was no surprise that the Ukrainian organization announced changes going into the next season. The CIS core of Danil 'Dendi' Ishutin, Akbar 'SoNNeikO' Butaev and Victor 'GeneRaL' Nigrini remains and the team will go back to being a full CIS squad again. Joining them will be former Team Empire support Vladimir 'RodjER' Nikogosyan, who had an impressive performance during his team's TI7 run, and former Double Dimension carry Vladislav 'Crystallize' Krystanek, a promising talent in the CIS region.