No, Really: DOTA 2’s Beta Is Over

We live in strange times. Food chains are trying to poison us, we can probably save lives by putting heads on dead people’s bodies, and games can corral a million-gajillion players without ever being “released”. Madness. Nothing makes sense anymore. Civilization has been replaced by a steaming crater of contradiction. And while those first two things have much further-reaching, highly disturbing implications, this is a videogame site so let’s talk about the last one. DOTA 2‘s beta ran for two years. During that time, it dominated all lanes of Steam’s most-played list because people like MOBAs a little bit maybe. But now – finally, amazingly – Valve Time has aligned with Real Time for a brief, shining moment. DOTA 2 is out. Oh, but you might still have to wait if you want to actually play. Why? Because – as I said earlier – nothing makes sense anymore.

Valve explained its rather atypical approach to shoving this behemoth of a game out the door in a celebratory launch update:

“The launch of Dota 2 is going to take on a different shape than products we’ve shipped in the past. Our thinking is that we want the existing audience to have uninterrupted access during the launch, in addition to bringing new players into Dota 2 in a way that isn’t frustrating. Simply put, we want to smooth out the traditional launch spike, but at the same time allow anyone to come in and try out Dota 2.”

“If you want to give Dota a try, or you have a friend you want to bring into the community, click the button and you can get in the launch queue. You’ll see your place in line, and when it is your turn we’ll send you an email letting you know you’re in. We’ll begin sending those emails this week.”

Valve claims the process is different from early access in that there’ll be no limits except for what its server infrastructure allows. The second there’s enough space, they’ll squeeze you in. The current setup can host roughly 450,000 players concurrently, but even that might not suffice. Why? Because the total player count is apparently twelve times that.

So yes, DOTA 2 is out, but it might be a little while before everything’s running full steam ahead. But hey, at least the tutorial‘s, um, slightly more existent now. That’s presumably helpful – though I don’t think it’s actually possible to design a MOBA tutorial that does anything other than balance precariously on the tip of the iceberg.

All that said, who’s thinking of making this their first MOBA experience? I mean, LoL is generally considered more newbie friendly, but Valve’s certainly trying.



  1. boe2 says:

    Did anyone really buy Valve’s “we limited the amount of players in beta” story? With every steam user having a gazillion dota2 beta vouchers in their inbox?
    I guess the good part of this news is that those vouchers will finally (or at least, I REALLY hope so) get cleaned up.

    • Aaax says:

      I believe it was limiting it pretty much, about 2 monts ago I tried putting a post on the forum that I got 20 invites to give out and within an hour they were all gone.

      • Cinek says:

        Lucky you. I tried to get rid of my – still can’t. Managed to give barely 2 out of 30 I got. And I posted on 3 different forums.

    • Crainey says:

      There is no way they limited it, why would they? It had close to 300,000 concurrent the last months or two, that doesn’t seem limited at all. I didn’t pick up on that particular story anyhow. I never heard of passes being denied, and there was always an abundance of them.

      As for the early access passes:
      “What happens to my unused Dota 2 Early Access Passes?
      Everyone who participated in the Early Access phase will receive a special edition pass that indicates how many new players they brought to Dota 2 by trading Early Access Passes. Existing Early Access Passes will go away.”

    • baby snot says:

      Yes because the jump in concurrent player bases jumped between each large release…

  2. Koojav says:

    “All that said, who’s thinking of making this their first MOBA experience?” I did that and I wouldn’t switch to any other MOBA on the market. HoN looks outdated and LoL is designed for 15yr olds who think that denying is an “anti-fun” mechanic.

    • RedViv says:

      It’s good that everybody who enjoys different things is scientifically proven to just be a silly kid. Imagine that awful world where people like different things for other reasons.

    • Fiyenyaa says:

      DotA 2 was my first MOBA too.
      As far as I’m concerned, you *needneedneed* some nice people to teach you and to play with though; I find myself general reluctant to play with less than a full stack of 5 people who know each other and are on voice communications with each other.

    • maximiZe says:

      Dota 2 is not a “MOBA” though.

    • Lord Custard Smingleigh says:

      Dear Sir, Madam, Both, or Other,

      Given the difficulty in rendering the sound traditionally referred to as a “raspberry” in print, I feel compelled to give notice that the upcoming collection of consonants is intended to serve as such.



      His Nibs, A. C. “Custard” Smingleigh, OBE (Withdrawn) *

      • RedViv says:

        I hereby declare cessation of my using the laney pushy thing term and adopt the proper moniker. SAUSAGES rule!

    • kael13 says:

      I play League because my friends have that whole ‘denying sucks’ attitude about DotA2. That said, aram is quite fun in a casual sort of way. Is there a similar mode in DotA2?

    • Steven Hutton says:

      Denying nothing… CREEPING sucks. Last hitting in general sucks.

      Lets all play a nice 45 minute game of “faffing about”.

      • vivlo says:

        i’m a huge fan of dota 2, yet i think the same. I don’t even like levelling wiht stats. It should be only skill based, and improvement only skill based, gameplay should allow that ; that’s what i would hope from a MOBA (or ASSFAGGOTS if you prefer) based on Magicka spells system.

      • Ringwraith says:

        Play jungle or an aggressive support instead then.
        Heck, in League of Legends, Draven is supposed to be an ADC, but simply repeatedly attacking your opponents when they try and just farm gold is fairly valid, as he just demolishes people with his crazy damage even without anything bought.

    • Low Life says:

      Well, at least you’ll fit right in with that attitude.

    • Gnoupi says:

      I’m 27 years old and I find denying quite annoying. If we could also do without the “last hitting”, that would be great.

      Hence the fact I only play support on LoL. You can spend your time actually playing, poking, setting up kills, and not farming.

      • Hieronymusgoa says:

        oh god…there is someone who understands me! i play support for the same reasons: i hate last hitting, i don’t care about denying or not.
        i like the LoL lore and my friends play it. so why change that…

        anyway, i will try out dota 2 since it’s free but i guess i will get as much warmth and love as in the beginning of LoL before the tribunal sorted a lot out or with demigod earlier in my life…

        • DerNebel says:

          I’ve found that Dota2 is a far more friendly place than LoL. It may be that I play a bit more with friends in Dota, and that I didn’t have the huge learning curve since I already knew the game.

          Still, I think it’s because lots of apparently unrelated heroes can fill the same roles. In LoL, the duo lane is always (outside of pro play and then still almost always) a ranged autoattacker and a support. The mid lane is a strong duelist and waveclearer, mostly with huge range or great mobility and the second solo lane is some tanky or evasive farmer destined to be irrelevant the first 12 minutes at least. You also HAVE to have a jungler, limited by runes, levels and champion pool (of which you have very little early on).

          In contrast, if you don’t get a full numbskull team of four people who pick hard carry heroes you can most likely find a setup that will work decently. I’ve even played (and won) a game of (pre buffs) phantom lancer mid versus Obsidian Destroyer, a matchup I, in a competent setting, had no business even showing up in lane to.

          There is a lot of kind of obtuse stuff going on under the hood, but with strong fundamentals of thinking about the map and looking to play with the team you should be doing good. What I’m getting at is this: Play support, leach experience, BUY A TELEPORT SCROLL and then join your team for sweet asskicking.

          Dota2 isn’t actually all that hard. It just seems like a brick wall but once you get into it you realise it’s a huge train station, just waiting to take you to awesomeville.

          • Hieronymusgoa says:

            You actually make me trying out supporting in DOTA2 :) Being a game changer possibly but not directly as a support sometimes bothers me (since I play “true” supporters like Nami, Sona and Janna). It may be the reason why people often play fake (IMHO) supports like Lux and such (“*wail* i want to matter with damage, not actual support”).

            But i don’t believe for a second that the DOTA2 community is friendly at all or lets say “friendlier” than anywhere else. I play online since Ultima Online and without stuff like the Tribunal in LoL people behave like savages everywhere on the Internet. Punish them for it (Tribunal) or have a**holes everywhere. But since I don’t take flaming so personal I don’t mind it to a certain extent.

      • DerNebel says:

        Have you tried supporting in Dota2? We need more players who doesn’t want to lasthit.

        It’s basically like supporting in LoL, except you get to have even more powerful gank setups, insane impact on the flow of the game and even MORE fun active abilities on items. If you play your cards well you can absolutely control the flow of a single lane or gank anywhere on the entire map.

        The basic items are cheaper now as well, don’t worry. You won’t simply be a “ward bitch” like in the bad old farming days of 2009.

        It’s basically like supporting in LoL, except now the opponents have real reason to fear you with every hero, not just situationally with Blitzcrank. iG.Chuan has more than adequately demonstrated that the role with the least amount of farm can easily be the most pivotable if played right. His Windrunner and Rubick are out of this world, often turning the entire game in a splitsecond.

        Supporting in Dota is awesome! Just make sure to forget about being stuck in your lane. In Dota, we almost always have a choice if we aren’t playing farming hardcarry scum like Antimage.

        • C0llic says:

          Yes. This. If anything the support role is even more interesting in dota 2. you are expected to not last hit, though depending on how aggressive your lane ends up being, denying the opponents can be fairly important.

          As a support you are also amond the most powerful of heroes early on, and you end up being the guys who set up kills and dictate the pace of the early game. Your power falls off into mid and late game, but at that point your role in team fights is usually to provide some form of disable or crowd control depending on the hero.

          Everything I have heard from former LoL players suggests that support is a far more fun role in dota, so I suggest you give the game another chance. But give it a real chance and find other new players to play with. Don’t just go it alone and expect to be able to learn it solo. As a LoL player you really aren’t that much different from a player totall fresh to the genre. Approach the game with that in mind.

    • Chris D says:

      Denying may or may not be a fun mechanic but it does take theme and suspension of disbelief, tears thems into tiny. tiny pieces, tramples them into the mud and then nukes the entire planet from orbit.

      • Malibu Stacey says:

        Explain stacking neutral camps in that case.

        • RedViv says:

          It is a well-known fact that with age an animal or monster accumulates more and more gold in its belly. Duh, that’s like fantasy 101.

        • Chris D says:

          I know what each of those words mean in isolation but I have no idea why they would all be next to each other.

          • Malibu Stacey says:

            Thereby proving you’re talking out of your arse on this subject.


          • Chris D says:

            I don’t even know which subject you think I’m trying to talk about but I fail to see how understanding “stacking neutral camps” is relevant to discussing theme in game design.

          • Malibu Stacey says:

            I’d engage in a battle of wits with you but as I believe in gentlemanly conduct, fighting an unarmed opponent doesn’t seem a particularly interesting proposition.

          • Chris D says:

            Nice line but as far as I can tell you still haven’t made any kind of point.

          • InternetBatman says:

            Creep stacking is pulling neutral creeps away so that more will respawn. There’s 800 different fluff explanations you could make for it, unlike denying. I thought LoL did denying brilliantly by limiting it to one character and making it an active ability, but then they took out.

            But yes, denying destroys verisimilitude. There are several mechanics that puncture suspension of disbelief, but none that destroy it like denying.

          • jrodman says:

            Malibu Stacy: You made an irrelevant comment (yes, it was) and then proceeded to be smug about it.
            And hypocritical. And then obtuse and time-wasting on top.

            Consider not behaving this way in the future.

          • Sarkhan Lol says:

            I know you are but what am I? *looks around smugly like he just owned the argument*

        • Berzee says:

          And and and explain the HUD!

      • KikiJiki says:

        I agree wholeheartedly. Often when I’m playing chess I have my suspension of disbelief shattered by the fact that a castle is physically smaller than a king, or that a knight can just jump over his forces willy nilly. I mean, what if there was a loose spear waggling around and he landed on it by accident? There’s not even any friendly fire either, so my attempts to roleplay as the US military are ruined.

        • Chris D says:

          Nice try, my friend, but chess is a far more abstracted system and can get away with this kind of thing.

          But the point is not that everything in a game should be realistic. It’s that DOTA and friends set up one scenario with the visual design and theme and then turn around and say “Yeah, that’s all bullshit” with their own mechanics.

          • KikiJiki says:

            It’s a mechanics based game with fluff, as opposed to a fluff based game with mechanics. I really don’t see why that’s so hard to understand.

          • Chris D says:

            You can have as much or as little “fluff” as you want in a game but once you’ve established some it’s not great practice to directly contradict it. Consistency matters.

            Theme matters for two reasons. One is entirely aesthetic so you can dismiss that aspect if you want. Although as most F2P games base their entire monetisation strategy on aesthetics I think you might find one or two people will disagree with you.

            The second is that theme is a metaphor for how your game systems interact with each other and when you go against that you set up players to expect that your systems will interact differently to how they do, and that ain’t good practice as far as teaching your game is concerned. Better to pick a theme that makes sense for the mechanics you want to implement, or be upfront about it and make an abstract game from the start.

          • Nick says:

            I’m afraid you are either misunderstanding the game on a massive level, or talking out your arse.

          • Randomer says:

            Well said, Chris. This is one of the main reasons why I dislike the denying mechanic.

          • gwathdring says:

            Bravo, Chris. A student of game design after my own heart. :) I’ll both reiterate in my own style and quibble. I don’t think a game as thick as Dota should be abstract. That would be a nightmare.

            Game mechanics should be simple or intuitive. Forcing players to memorize a lot of fiddly little details is poor design. Most abstract games are simple, because trying to remember all of the sorts of things that go into a game of, say, Warhammer 40k but with little anonymous cubes and checkers would be a nightmare. “Wait, standing on the green squares means I roll extra dice when you attack? Why?”

            Theme in games can be a purpose unto it’s own, but it can also serve to render complicated mechanics more intuitive. By replacing the green squares with “cover” and the red cubes with a little soldier figurine (or even just the name “Soldier” on a game-guide), we can make sense of that last sentence more readily with the answer “Sorry, the green squares represent partial cover, so you get a defensive bonus.”

            When you aren’t careful with your application of theme, it can have the opposite effect. “The green squares are open terrain. Those dice are your defense dice.” “So I’m harder to hit when I’m out in the open?” “Er … wait … I think so? Let me check the rulebook …”

            It’s a small thing. But DOTA 2 has a lot of these small things. Everyone who does the “It’s imposing at first but easy once you get to know it” song and dance is missing the point. They took the time to get to know it. They looked at all the unintuitive and overcomplicated mechanics and committed them to memory rather than trying to make sense out of them. Now they can have fun because they’ve got the game packaged up in their memory like the face of an old friend. That doesn’t change how obtuse a game Dota 2 is, and PART of what makes it so obtuse is the absolutely awful connection between game and theme. When your world is fully fleshed out and intricate … you have to tie it in with your mechanics better. A better game than Dota 2 would lose the fluff, or tie it together better.

        • InternetBatman says:

          A common explanation is that the rook represents a siege tower (and thus is highly mobile).

          • gwathdring says:

            But what about the Battle Bishops? And the queen? If there’s a theme in there it’s likewise abstract. I’m going to go with “there is actually almost no theme here at all” since it’s a game designed over a long period of time by broad committee and is almost always taught without making a lick of thematic sense.

      • miscz says:

        I don’t think denying is that bad or shattering suspension of disbelief. Yeah, the gold/exp denying is weird but on the other hand you want your creeps to die so you fight closer to your own tower in the beginning. You’re safer, your opponents have to keep distance and you get that sweet exp to yourself.

        • Chris D says:

          Those are good mechanical reasons for why you might want to do that but don’t really explain thematically why a “hero” would be slaughtering their own troops, as opposed to just ordering them not to attack.

          • Hieronymusgoa says:

            finally! this comment made me understand the whole part about the shattering of SoD because of denying. thank you a lot, good sir :)

          • Cactuscat222 says:

            I’ve honestly never seen an argument about the deny mechanic reduced to its effect on suspension of disbelief and theme, so this is new grounds for me. I’ve seen people exclaim that it is unintuitive because ‘why would you slay your own troops’, however this argument was never framed as a preservation of theme — only natural train of thought.

            What I’m confused about is the necessity of this suspension. Is it enough to stop you from playing? I’m asking this honestly — I’ve really never seen someone complain about this from a thematic standpoint. To me, DotA 2 (and MOBAs in general) seem to be far more about the mechanics, interaction and competition than it is about lore or theme. I mean, we have nemesis’ who can fight on the same team (that doesn’t make sense), enemies sworn to one side fighting for the other (that too), beings of immense power being being defeated by paltry weapons (Faceless Void is supposed to be above all time; how does he fall to a Sniper?!) — so why does denying bring you out of the experience as opposed to any number of the things? I mean, a good number of the “heroes” are actually villainous or less than morally upright, I see no reason that they wouldn’t slay their own troops if it was to their benefit.

          • Chris D says:


            You’re welcome. Glad I’ve been able to make someone happy today.


            For my part I’m surprised my original statement has proved to be quite so controversial as it has done. I assumed it was kind of obvious but just didn’t really matter to people who enjoyed the game.

            Your question is a little tricky to answer. Generally it’s more the, to me, overly competitive nature of these games that stops me playing them. I can be competitive enough once I’ve become comfortable with a game but I don’t particularly want to dive into that mindset straight away.

            On the other hand I would be far more likely to play a game without denying than one with it. Theme is a large part of what I enjoy in games so with something like this that completely blows the theme out of the water the game would have to be extremely good in terms of mechanics for me to still choose to play it over something else. So, yes, if I was going to play this type of game denying would put me off.

            Alternatively if a game used the denying mechanic but had a theme where it actually made sense then that would be a different matter.

            While I could accept that an evil character might kill a few minions I can’t really extend that to sitting there mowing down their entire army. It’s not exactly a practical way to win a war, and anyway, why not just order them not to attack?

            Most of the other things you mention fall into the category of things I’d rather not happen but I can live with them for the sake of practicality. I can also find ways to explain them away fairly easily. Comics have enemies working together or allies fighting all the time. Denying seems to be different because we have a supposed war where the commanders are killing their own troops before the enemy can get to them and I can’t come up with any scenario where that would make sense.

          • gwathdring says:


            I put this elsewhere, but here’s why I think “suspension of disbelief” and thematic continuity is important. Games should be simple or intuitive. Complicated, unintuitive games take a lot of time to learn and once you’ve learned them, they can be fun. But that’s inefficient both for the player and the designer. You can have just as much fun capitalizing on existing intuitions and systems of thought–and a truly artful designer leads players into new thought spaces not with arbitrary complexity but with elegant choices that are either so simple as to make their arbitrary nature irrelevant (see YINSH and the other GIPF games, or Hive), or bolstered by thematic content that guides players both in the remembering rules and in the heat of tactical decision making.

            When a game is clear, simple, and abstract, we just remember how it works and get on with it. When a game is messy, complicated and abstract … what’s the point? When a game is messy, complicated, and dripping with thick theme and gorgeous artwork … well, a lot of people will dive right in. But when designers aren’t careful they can end up making the game harder to learn, or frustrating players who came for the thematic idea but find the mechanics lacking or obtuse. This will always happen to a point. DOTA 2 does this far past that point.

      • robotslave says:

        Here, Chris, let me fix this vexing issue for you:

        First, imagine that when a lord denies his own creep, which of course is only allowed when the creep’s health is very low, a wee tiny ambulance zips in and hauls the poor thing back to its barracks. Now imagine that Valve haven’t added the animation to the game yet, because performance.

        Are we done here?

        • Berzee says:

          EDIT: I have had a good long think and changed my mind. If the game included little mini-ambulances every time you deny a creep, I would be 300% more likely to play it. I leave the rest of the post for historical purposes, but I REGRET EVERY WORD.

          Naw, because now we have the issue of why the ambulances can’t be automated, leaving the Mightiest Fighter to actually fight. =P

          I agree with Mr. Christopher D. that denying is unintuitive from a “this isn’t how I expect armies to work” perspective, but the main reason why *I* don’t like the mechanic is just worsened by your imaginary situation =P If I were to manage a lord, I want that lord to be doing lordly things. All of the last hitting stuff makes the game feel less like Lords Management and more like Creeps Managers Management. I don’t deny (HA) that it’s tactical and skillful and what-all, but it’s definitely not as spiffy as dueling a skeleton king.

          Also, last-hitting and denying make me feel like the defenders of the ancients are actually stuck in side an ancient MMORPG with silly XP-distributing methods.

      • darkChozo says:

        Thematically speaking, as I recall creeps are units summoned by the Ancients and therefore are somewhat disposable. It’s less a matter of executing your own troops and more a matter of destroying a tool to deny your opponent an advantage. Think the military destroying sensitive technology instead of abandoning it to the enemy.

        Alternatively, imagine a world where we have innumerable combat robots, each controlled by a CPU housed in a bag of gold doubloons. Who would care about the robots in that scenario? No one, that’s who.

        • Berzee says:

          Really all they’d need to do to make it sensible is call “Gold” something else. It makes fantasy-world sense that whoever killed a magically-summoned soldier-monster could absorb their “Spirit Energy” to grow more powerful, but that an allied hero would choose to let the soldier-monster rest in peace instead of stealing their energy. Not so much sense why the merchant would accept spirit energy as legal tender, though. ^_^

          The auto-looting of pocket change at the moment of execution that currently exists though, is a little bit funny. =P But I think part of the point of these games is to be a weird and funny pile of ideas that is fun to master as long as you don’t look for cohesion. ;)

          • darkChozo says:

            I’m counting that as an endorsement for a Dark Souls MOBA. It will be the hardest game ever created.

          • gwathdring says:

            Well put, but I disagree. If the game were less complicated I’d agree, but as things stand … lacking both mechanical and thematic cohesion is a bit of a problem. It’s a big messy pile of ideas that can be fun once you’ve memorized where everything is in the pile. It’s like swapping kitchens with a friend and competitively sorting through the Random Stuff drawers. You can get really good at figuring out where they would put things and get really good at hiding sharp spiky things just so in your Random Stuff drawer … but ultimately the drawer is still a mess and in addition to their being sharper, slicker games that are more accessible in immediately obvious ways there are also yet more complicated games that are still easier to learn and less of a mess.

    • Nintyuk says:

      I prefer Smite

  3. Crainey says:

    My first MOBA experience was League of Legends, almost 4 years ago now during its beta. Because I have invested so much time/love into the game I doubt I’ll ever change, especially not with their massive support for eSports (which is a big deal to me). Had DotA 2 been my first MOBA experience I would probably be playing it.

    Sure League of Legends is derived from DotA, but over time League of Legends has become its own. Not one is better than the other.

    • KikiJiki says:

      “massive support for eSports”?

      You mean the league system they have where Riot pays for everything down to player salaries? I don’t call that support really, more propping up.

      Valve might not ‘support’ eSports in that way outside of The International but the DotA scene has been thriving for years and continues to go from strength to strength with regards to sponsor involvement (latest big name was Mastercard).

      • Crainey says:

        I agree that DotA 2 is a much more natural and self-sufficient eSport, it has a much longer history too of course. And I reckon I would agree with you on this argument, but for the sake of generalities and ease it is safe to say Riot has helped the eSport scene… at least for now.

        As for what Riot’s “support” actually does or does not do for eSports and League of Legends as an eSport, well that’s a discussion I’d rather not have over a comment section during work.

        • Malibu Stacey says:

          One of the things Riot’s support has been confirmed to do is demand events don’t have tournaments for any other Dota-clones if they want to have an official LoL tournament.
          Dreamhack get around this as they allow anyone to put on a tournament so the Dota 2 tournaments are run by the sponsors (previously Corsair, more recently Asus Republic of Gamers).

          It’s one way to support eSports I guess, at the expense of others.

      • mickygor says:

        Believe it or not, support and “prop up” are synonyms.

        • Grygus says:

          Perhaps, but they at least have different connotations. We can agree that I support Valve by buying their games, but nobody seriously believes that, should I stop, Valve will even notice the loss of that support. Were I to say that I “prop up” Valve by buying their games, people will believe that I am implying that, without me, Valve would immediately collapse. I believe they would call me some variant of “idiot” for even attempting to imply such a ridiculous thing. I’m not even denying that I am some variant of idiot; merely pointing out that one of those terms avoids alerting people.

          They’re not the same.

          • mickygor says:

            In which case, we can say that KikiJiki’s wrong to say Riot props up their eSports scene.

          • KikiJiki says:

            @mickkygor considering Riot’s eSports scene is entirely funded by themselves I think it’s safe to say they prop it up. Without them owning the entire league from players to prizes I very much doubt there would be any meaningful scene at all for League, it’s a boring game with little depth.

      • cyrenic says:

        If only we knew what would happen if Riot didn’t directly fund the League of Legends scene somewhere, we could see if LoL actually needed “propping up”. Somewhere where eSports are really popular, maybe.

        Like…South Korea! There’s no way LoL will ever take off there with all that competition.

        It’s not like League could become the most popular eSport game in South Korea without Riot’s LCS or anything.

      • darkChozo says:

        Does it matter? I don’t particularly care about LoL’s competitive scene, but it still manages to be ridiculously popular, Riot money or not. You can pay for your player’s salaries and production values, but you can’t pay for the billion trillion people who tune into the big tournaments or who somehow manage to watch Twitch streams all day.

        I also rather doubt that there wouldn’t be an appreciable scene barring Riot’s involvement, it’s a ludicrously popular competitive mostly-balanced fairly-deep fairly-difficult game. Then again, apparently Call of Duty is esports material now, so who knows.

  4. ran93r says:

    I tried to get into it but I don’t think it’s really my thing, MOOBS in general seem to have me scratching my head a lot of the time.

  5. Zyx says:

    Hahaha… ‘3,4,5,6 and 12’. I see what you did there.

  6. airtekh says:

    I might try it out sometime, since it’s free, and made by Valve.

    The genre is well outside my comfort zone though, so I fully expect not to like it.

    • Corrupt_Tiki says:

      Do try it.

      Go into it with an open mind, and realise it is a highly competitive multiplayer game.

      Hopefully you get paired up with some good teams and grow to enjoy it.

    • Corrupt_Tiki says:

      I think when people say it’s more difficult than LoL, is more just referring to a few additional mechanics, and more emphasis on getting a good ‘farm’ or denying the other teams ‘farm’.

      I think generally the community is ok, but everyone gets frustrated when things just don’t go how you want them too, so I expect a bit of trash talk and emotion in the game.

      It’s really fun, in a masochistic sort of way. Took me a few grindy games before it sunk it’s hooks firmly into my brain. Now an addict.

      • vivlo says:

        ” everyone gets frustrated when things just don’t go how you want them too, so I expect a bit of trash talk and emotion in the game. ”

        Wow – that’s the most comprehensive and gentle thing you could say about MOBA communications

  7. Schmudley says:

    I’m personally not tempted by MOBAs in general, including DOTA 2, simply because it seems like they require an insane amount of time and practice. That’s time that could be spent on many, many other games/things. I definitely see the appeal though, it must feel great when your large amount of effort pays off.

    • Corrupt_Tiki says:

      Any competitive multiplayer game involves a certain amount of time dedicated to it to become competent.

      The main thing that turns people off dota is the learning cliff, and being abused by dipshits with microphones.

  8. mickygor says:

    Does this mean I don’t have to worry about giving all my invites to the Dota 2 bot?

  9. mrmalodor says:

    I still fail to understand why anyone considers this game good. I tried it for 3 hours and each and every agonizing minute (of which most was spent waiting for a match to start) seemed like a gigantic un-entertaining waste of time.

    • Corrupt_Tiki says:

      Shocking news!

      People have different tastes! D:

    • Hmm-Hmm. says:

      It’s a bit silly, because while I don’t play these games, I get the impression that they were designed for the people who already know how to play. As if a certain lack of information is part of the skill. Like, say, in EVE. Where you get the idea that the devs are just mocking the foolish new player daring to do X or Y when obviously he/she ought to have done Z, even though there was no indication of that at all.

      I have watched youtube videos (I like HuskyStarcraft and TotalBiscuit’s videos on Dota2), and that really helps in understanding the game and the long learning curve in it. I do think that the guides in Dota2 do provide a much better starting point for new players than.. well.. just leaving new players to fend for themselves.

      • Skhalt says:

        The secret to EVE is to open the market, uncheck the “show only available” box, and read the descriptions of pretty much everything. It takes a while but after that you should have a good idea of how things are supposed to work.

    • vivlo says:

      That means you direclty tried online matchmaking, and for 3 beginning hours, it IS a huge mistake – you’ll just get facestomprolled without any time to understand what happens and why, and there is no fun in it for you, nor for the players you’re against. Beginning should be offline, now there’s a tutorial that’s more useful than it might appear, or at least facing bots, or online with friends in your team (that’s even better) still facing bots.

  10. Malibu Stacey says:

    Game has dozens upon dozens of known bugs & still hasn’t achieved parity with Dota (which was the stated requirements for this) but it’s no longer beta.

    Uh what?

    • The_Player says:

      Welcome to the Valve way of dealing with game development. As much as I love them this isn’t that smart. I do realize though that they’re doing it to use most of marketing out of TI3, but the fact remains the same: Dota 2 isn’t that close to being in ready-to-being-released state.

  11. Corrupt_Tiki says:

    I just gave away all my invites the other day.

    I feel silly now :(

    Oh well, back to getting paired up with noobies and getting my ass kicked again :D

    • Malibu Stacey says:

      Why do you feel silly for giving away your invites? That’s what they’re for & VALVe would’ve taken them away from you now anyway.

      • Corrupt_Tiki says:

        Ahh, Just because of how much work it took in friending people and gifting them. Seems a bit moot for a 1+ day advantage on other people lol.

        Oh well, they seemed happy enough :)

        • vivlo says:

          it’s more than 1+ day advantage for them – idk hw long it takes for getting in the game from the queue, but i expect a significant delay

        • Malibu Stacey says:

          According to the blog post you get “a special edition pass that indicates how many new players they brought to Dota 2 by trading Early Access Passes.” so they’re rewarding you somewhat for the effort you went to giving all those invites out.

          TBH you get my respect for going to the trouble. I have/had 30+ in my inventory & never bothered doing anything with them as no one seemed to want them once I actually had some (I’ve been in the beta since February 2012 when invites were as rare as hens teeth).

  12. DrScuttles says:

    DOTA 2 popped my MOBA cherry. It hurt. And in the game.

  13. Shiny says:

    Yes, unsanitary conditions in a restaurant are a sign of the apocalypse. WTF.

  14. Ostymandias says:

    don’t listen to the haters
    dota 2 is a great game
    1063 hours and about 900 games so far for me

    last hitting is great fun once you get the hang of it. the amount of mind games, subtle strategy and micro skills that goes into winning a lane is staggering

  15. Jackablade says:

    So does it come with some tutorials and/or bots? I don’t think I feel any great compulsion to ruin other peoples games with my complete lack of understanding of what a MOBA really even is, but it’d be nice to be able to understand to some degree what the hell people are talking about with their endless streams of obscure terminology.

    • Exedar says:

      Yes it does come with Tutorials and you can also either play with Bots vs other Bots or with other people vs Bots.

      • Gesadt says:

        plus ingame guide system with recommended skill, item builds

  16. Moraven says:

    After not having played DOTA in so long and playing LoL, I don’t think I could go back to having to deny. Although I will try it to play Techies once they are released.

    • Aibrys says:

      Please dont.

      Its not that I dont think you are competent and that you can play techies, its just that techies are an easy hero to forget and you would probably be sick of them by the games of noobs trying techies for the first time on your team when they get released.

      However, with that said, you must probably be competent with them if you would play of bit of Dota 2 just to play them, so I guess you are trustworthy.

  17. sirnoahlot says:

    Lol I literally just started playing this game about 3 days ago. I guess I can still say I was an early access man, right? By the way, DOTA is a pretty fantastic game, the fact that I can still have fun losing to bots is a testament to how fun it is. It’s definitely going to be at the top of my most played list in the future.

  18. C0llic says:

    Dota 2 is actually a very deep, very fun game. The big barrier is the learning curve, but honestly you can overcome that by playing with friends. The community can be toxic, but that can be circumvented by playing with a supportive group of people. They aren’t impossible to find and I encourage anyone to find one of the many noob groups who play together, first in inhouses then taking groups off to matchmaking.

    You will meet people you enjoy playing with and ponce that happens you will soon be hooked. I’m a 33 old man who has always been terrible at rts games and who never played a MOBA or ARTS before DotA 2. If I can learn the game anyone can, and you really do owe it to yourself to try. It’s one of the most satisfying and exciting multiplayer games i’ve ever played.

  19. Makariel says:

    I had my first moba experience in the beta of dota2. I figured I beta not do that again.

  20. Enkinan says:

    I would like to try this as I’ve not played a MOBA before but do enjoy team based games.

    Any suggestions besides having a tough skin against the inevitable verbal ass beating I’m going to receive while learning?

    • Mark says:

      Watch some Beginners guides on youtube so you understand the basics of the game and mechanics like the shop, courier, last hitting, how towers work etc. Pick a couple of heroes to learn (not just one because someone else might pick them) by looking at Try maybe support heroes first, don’t play carries because their role is to carry the whole team and win the game and it’s a big responsibility and you have to really know what you’re doing.

      After you’ve figured out how a couple of the heroes work and played some bot games start playing some games against other people.

      If people on the other team become abusive, just mute them instantly (this is very easy, just a button on the scoreboard) – if your own team is, warn them you’ll mute them if they continue to be a dick (meaning you can’t communicate / coordinate as a team) and they will either be nice or shutup, or if they continue to be rude mute them instantly for stress free games.

      Good luck!

  21. Mark says:

    Brilliant brilliant game, only just gotten into it in the last 6 weeks. I am a longtime Eve player so understand it takes a while to learn / understand some games and it took me a while with Dota to catch the bug.

    It’s hard to explain but Dota basically is supposed to be like chess or a board game in a way – balanced an predictable but complex enough to give almost infinite scope for skill / strategy / knowledge. That’s why the map is almost perfectly symmetrical and all items and heroes are available to both sides.

    I say this as someone that is still a complete noob – after a while you slowly start understanding more and more of what is going on in the game and why certain things are good and bad, how certain things work etc. I can just about name all of the roughly 100 heroes now, haven’t played anything like each of them once though.

    The community isn’t great bit it’s no worse than playing BF3 online really (my current other multiplayer game just to use as a comparison) – although because there’s only 10 people in a game people acting like jerks tends to feel a bit more personal. Also more often than not it is your own teammates that are being dicks which is less pleasant than someone on the other side you just shot in the face. I just mute people almost instantly if they become abusive now and carry on with the game stress free.

    Give it a try, however make sure you play against bots, watch a couple of beginner videos before you jump into a game vs humans (you can do co-op bot games – humans vs bots, which is a good place to start) or you’ll get stomped while you try and figure out how the carrier/shop works.

    Persist and you will be rewarded.

  22. Beernut says:

    I wonder, if they timed the release to have it line up with the beginning of the steam summer sale. If the latter makes some use of the item-inventory (like the coal-collecting-thing one christmas), it would help not to have all the dota2-invites clutter it up.

    • basilisk says:

      Probably the other way around, really. And the sale is pretty much guaranteed to feature trading cards very prominently, so there will definitely be clutter. But we’ll know more some eight hours from now, anyway.