Dota 2 developer Valve Corporation has finally stepped into the ongoing issue with TNC Predator’s Carlo “Kuku” Palad and the upcoming Chongqing Major in China. Valve has now officially banned Kuku from attending the tournament and will also be slamming his team with a 20% Dota Pro Circuit (DPC) point penalty.
In a statement posted on the official Dota 2 blog, Valve said that while they think that it is the responsibility of the teams to handle such issues, they will step in if the teams failed to do so. According to Valve, “TNC has mishandled the situation on multiple occasions, making the situation much worse than it needed to be.”
The issue first arose after Kuku used racist language aimed against Chinese players during a pub match. This followed an earlier incident when another Filipino player, Andrei “skem” Ong formerly of compLexity Gaming, also made a derogatory statement against an opposing Chinese team during a live match in the DreamHack DreamLeague Season 10 tournament back in November. Reports from that time indicated that the organizers of the Chongqing Major and the Chinese government banned Kuku from attending the tournament.
The developer continued that they thought TNC was working to get a stand-in for Kuku as they told the team earlier. Valve however believes that “TNC is currently not taking proper responsibility for their actions.”
After Kuku was caught using racist language against Chinese players in a pub match, the manager of TNC had apparently tried to cover up the situation. Valve stressed that “TNC is not the victim in this case. It is not okay to cover up the situation, avoid any real sense of responsibility and then deflect it onto the community. We expect them to disagree with this.”
Valve also clarified that Kuku had not been banned by the Chinese government, in contrast with earlier reports.
“While there is a lot of anxiety around his attendance and problems it may create, we do not believe his presence creates a real security threat,” added Valve.
Even so, Valve has now attempted to resolve the issue by outright banning Kuku themselves. Moreover, the additional 20% DPC point penalty seems to be the developer’s move to ensure TNC will cooperate with their decision. Such a penalty essentially hamstrings the team’s efforts of earning a direct invite to The International 2019, which coincidentally will also be held in China.
“Players and teams will make mistakes in the future, and they should accept responsibility for them. We want there to be opportunities to learn from their errors, but taking responsibility doesn’t mean making mistakes don’t come with a cost,” said Valve.