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Dues And DOTAs: Valve And Blizzard Reach Agreement

Welp, this image is useless now.

Well, that was close. When last we checked in on Blizzard and Valve’s legal frontlines, the two were arming up for all-out war over the DOTA name. Blizzard was adamant that it owned the “Ancients” part of “Defense of the Ancients,” and therefore, Valve had no right to trademark “DOTA” for use in DOTA 2. Happily, however, neither side will be drafting up a legal defense (of the Ancients), as the PC gaming empires have called off their cold war. Hands have been shaken and babies kissed. So then, let’s have a look at the terms.

In a statement received by RPS, the two ultra-developers explained that Valve will keep using “DOTA” in a commercial capacity while Blizzard has full right to apply it in relation to community maps and other non-commercial things of the like. But what of Blizzard DOTA, which seems to have evolved a coin slot somewhere down the line? Blizzard’s Rob Pardo explained:

“Both Blizzard and Valve recognize that, at the end of the day, players just want to be able to play the games they’re looking forward to, so we’re happy to come to an agreement that helps both of us stay focused on that. As part of this agreement, we’re going to be changing the name of Blizzard DOTA to Blizzard All-Stars, which ultimately better reflects the design of our game. We look forward to going into more detail on that at a later date.”

Which is kind of a far cry from Blizzard’s previous stance, but Blizzard and Valve have stated – on no uncertain terms – that they “do not plan to discuss the terms of the agreement beyond today’s announcement.” So what happened in the hotly contested rap battle between Chris Metzen and Erik Wolpaw stays in the hotly contested rap battle between Chris Metzen and Erik Wolpaw.

Really, though, for folks who just want to play games, this outcome couldn’t be much better. Everyone seems happy, nothing’s on hold, the community’s not at risk – it’s good news all around. And seeing as there was no real practical need for this scuffle anyway (a little thing called League of Legends has managed marginal success without dropping the “DOTA” bomb), I’m glad that PC gaming’s two most titanic anchors have ceased their clash. Time for merriment.

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Nathan Grayson

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