Free to Play, the Valve-made film exploring the highly competitive and demanding world of Dota 2 eSports, will appear on Steam March 19 following a premiere event at San Francisco's Castro Theatre. True to its name, Free to Play won't cost anything to stream or download, but a paid Dota 2 item and skin pack will also be available that will donate 25 percent of purchases toward the players featured in the movie.
The film sagas the experiences of three pro gamers—Singaporean Benedict "HyHy" Lim, American Clinton "Fear" Loomis, and Ukrainian Danil "Dendi" Ishutin—and how wrapping their lives around a single game's professional scene underscores both the sheer effort to secure the $1 million prize at the 2011 International Championships and the steep toll eSports exact on life outside videogames. Valve is producing the documentary entirely from its studio. We watched the first half at Valve's offices last June and came away impressed with its dedicated focus on treating eSports gaming seriously.