Cor Blimey, Wotcha: Arena Of Fate

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good PC, must be in want of a MOBA. However little known the feelings or views of such a man may be on his first venturing into this world of game, this truth is so well fixed in the minds of the surrounding publishers, that he is considered as the rightful property of some one or other of their developers.

“My dear Mr. Bennet,” said his lady to him one day, “have you heard that Arena of Fate is let at last?” Mr. Bennet replied that he had not. “But it is,” returned she; “for Mrs. Crytek has just been here, and she told me all about it.” Mr. Bennet made no answer. “Do not you want to know who has taken it?” cried his wife impatiently.

I think that was an advertisement for jellied eels, or perhaps Bernadette Dickens’ chimney sweeping services?


  1. Keyrock says:

    Pro-tip: Watch the video muted. The narration will make you want to rip your own ears off.

    • Sinomatic says:

      Why didn’t I see this comment before watching the video?

      I’m never getting these blood stains out now….

      • Graerth says:

        For me, it was a “so bad it’s hilarious” feeling when listening to the narrating. So forced “let’s go team” piping it was…amazing.

  2. Mags says:

    But the real question is, who’s Wickham in this analogy?

  3. squirrelrampage says:

    This trailer is so bad, it could be exhibit A in the Crytech’s possibly upcoming bankruptcy trial.

  4. nopol10 says:

    So…Cryengine, which can produce some amazingly stunning visuals, is being used to make this game…

    • TillEulenspiegel says:

      You should see my entirely 2D game made in Unreal Engine 4.

      Anyway, I think this game mostly succeeds in creating a nice cartoony art style.

      • Philomelle says:

        “Nice” isn’t the word I’d use here. “Completely and utterly uninspired,” maybe.

        Honestly, I’m very tired of most modern Alice designs being “Let’s rip off the Disney design and add a random sexualized feature”. At least it’s a BDSM mask instead of a mini-skirt and exposed cleavage this time.

        • GameCat says:

          I don’t mind bad Alice designs.
          It can be much worse, like making generic good vs. evil high fantasy and just slap Alice In Wondeland characters there or even worse – adding logic to place where everyone is mad.
          I’m looking at you Mr. Burton, take your abomination somwhere else.

          • pepperfez says:

            No, it’s just adding the wrong logic that’s a problem. Wonderland has its own very specific system of pun- and joke-based logic, and adding Our-World logic to it is illogical.

        • Polifemo says:

          I wouldnt call it unispired really. Its simply going for an interpretation of western cartoon style mixed with some jrpg design tendencies. That many games choose this design philosophy does not mean that the resulting style is the same.
          I rather welcome games that try to go for a stylized look as oposed to trying to apear pealistic or trying to cram as much detail as possible. style>graphics for me (I much prefer Wind Waker over any other zelda title visually for instance).

          And to be fair, Disney´s Alice design used an already common Alice design as bases (or at least one of the more popular ones).

    • Keyrock says:

      I don’t mind the visuals. Maybe Crytek has finally caught on to the fact that Art Style > Polygon Count. I wouldn’t say this is a great art style, but it’s not bad either.

      • Bradamantium says:

        You can have a good bit of both, though. This looks like they mistook stylistic art for meaning “looks like a mid-grade Xbox 360 title.” It’s all just so…flat and lifeless. The now-generic “dark fairy tale” look doesn’t help either.

    • Fenix says:

      Shush don’t you know that all Dota clones are destined to have cartoony fantasy graphics? It was decided because reasons.

    • Graerth says:

      I’d hazard a “Don’t make it too high end, or the masses might not have the computers to run it and we can’t beat League of Legends and Doto”.

      So they make similar cartoony lower fidelity style as LoL and will surely beat them soundly, just like WoW was absolutely crushed by the various MMOos which came after it with same graphic style.

  5. Viroso says:

    Who’s playing all these mobas anyway? I thought LoL and DOTA 2 were so big already there would be no room for anything else but there are tons of mobas all the time everywhere.

    • Xocrates says:

      You could make the same question when WoW came out and everyone started making MMOs, and in that case the answer was a rather resounding “no-one”.

      Granted, since this time the games are free to play (pretty much by necessity, since both LoL and Dota 2 are) it’s easier to maintain a healthy player base number, though it’s questionable how much money they’re making.

      Though, personally, I wouldn’t be bothered by this if not by the fact that they all look and play pretty much alike.

    • Banyan says:

      Up front costs for a MOBA are pretty small, especially compared to an MMO. These have one map, maybe 20 characters whose abilities are largely ripped off from other MOBAs, a basic AI for the creeps and towers, and a gimmick about how they are “different”. It’s really low risk for a computer game so a lot of companies appear to have decided to throw their line in and see if the public bites.

      Still I would be surprised if LoL and Dota 2 didn’t account for 95+% of all MOBA hours played over the past week. Maybe Smite has a few percentage points.

      • Smoky_the_Bear says:

        Yep this is the thing, it’s fairly cheap to make one, a full MMO takes years, this probably takes 12 months from start to finish before they can open up the beta and start making cash. With up to a potential monthly player base approaching 80 million players (as of January, LoL reported 67 million players a month, DOTA is played by more people than WoW now so at least 7 million per month and realistically could be higher, then you have the other assorted games), these games don’t need a huge slice of the pie to become profitable given the relatively low development costs.

  6. Zankmam says:

    Gah, that narration is awful.

    And the character design, ugh. Really don’t like it, especially for Alice…

  7. basilisk says:

    I’m amazed that some people apparently think that this has any chance of being a success. The MOBA craze is the MMO craze all over again, but no one seems to have learned anything.

    • Baines says:

      Everyone hopes/believes that they will be the lucky one.

      And I guess no one has any ideas about what else to make other than what is popular at the moment (or was popular a year or two earlier.) Or they just can’t get anyone with money to bankroll anything else.

  8. RedViv says:

    In-character narration is a nice idea for a trailer.
    Technical description of the gameplay is a nice idea for a trailer.
    Bringing both together is a dreadful idea for a trailer.

  9. Freud says:

    The narrator sounds like a parody of Miranda Richardson as the queen in Black Adder.

    • Pockets says:

      Wait… isn’t it also the voice of Fran Chappell? Should have stuck to the Ready Steady Cook.

  10. Koozer says:

    Dammit the article title stole my terribly witty joke.

    Now I have nothing to say, except I am constantly intrigued about Mr. PEGI’s pronunciation of 12, as if he is somehow pleasantly surprised at the rating being awarded.

  11. Loyal_Viggo says:

    By the Beard of Zeus that trailer was so han-rific that 15 seconds was all I could take before my impending doom-ometer had risen to the following level:

    “We have barred the gates, but can not hold them for long. We cannot get out. They have taken the Bridge and the Second Hall. Frár and Lóni and Náli fell there. The pool is up to the wall at the Westgate. The Watcher in the water took Óin. We cannot get out. The end comes. Drums, drums in the deep. They are coming.”

  12. Tei says:

    I disagree strongly with the art style.

    I had a hard time telling the character was Red Riding Hood. The wolf looked like Generic Wolf #441.

    Theres not enough fantasy and expression in these designs. They look too much like Movie Secondary Characters and not enough like this:
    link to
    or this:
    link to

    I hate being negative with any game announcement, and I specially hate it when other people is negative too in the same thread. But I consider this a lost oportunity to be more artistic and actually use the oportunity to do something fresh and cool.

    Nobody is that cynical that they ripoff Farmville art style because it just works, or it is? But if he is soo cinical, why I should I care about his game? In a pile of similar-graphics games?

    If you want to be threatend differently or special, be different or special.

  13. emptee says:

    soooo, noone is commenting how the environments are terribly sterile and boring?
    Why does it look like a football field?

  14. Bobka says:

    I can’t wait till MOBAs stop being the PC game flavour of the half-decade. Of course, it will be something else after that, but at least it will be different.

    • Keyrock says:

      Here’s hoping it’s pony hair brushing simulators.

      /crosses fingers

    • Lacero says:

      They’re all fantasy so far, we’ve still got sci-fi mobas, ww2 mobas and then lava mobas and ice mobas to go before the genre is played out.

  15. int says:

    Little Red Riding Hood, you are to stay here for the next six months learning to speak beautifully, like a lady in a florist’s shop. If you work hard and do as you’re told, you shall sleep in a proper bedroom, have lots to eat, and money to buy chocolates and go for rides in taxis. But if you are naughty and idle, you shall sleep in the back kitchen amongst the black beetles, and be wolloped by Mrs. Pearce with a broomstick. At the end of six months you will be taken to Buckingham Palace, in a carriage, beautifully dressed. If the king finds out you are not a lady, you will be taken to the Tower of London, where your head will be cut off as a warning to other presumptuous flower girls! But if you are not found out, you shall have a present… of, ah… seven and six to start life with as a lady in a shop. If you refuse this offer, you will be the most ungrateful, wicked girl, and the angels will weep for you.

  16. Vandelay says:

    “I’ll be waiting”

    Sounds like a threat to me.

    There are actually some not bad ideas here, but the presentation is so abysmal and that voice so grating that I doubt I will see if they execute those ideas well. Edit: It would be like a DOTA advert featuring Luna!

    Having alternative victory conditions is a really good idea. 20 mins sounds a little tight though. Things are really just getting going and then you finish. That could just be me comparing to other MOBAs though

    • Xocrates says:

      Well, there are multiple ways they could use to speed up the gameplay (start with all non-ultimate abilities allowing for a quicker start, less focus on items meaning less focus on farming, more snowballing – though this one isn’t really recommended), but I have no idea if they’re going that route or not.

      The thing they mention that makes me believe a game can take less than 20 minutes is the point system, meaning you no longer need to push to the enemy base, but yeah, that essentially means ending the game half-way.

  17. chiablo says:

    This looks like an iOS game. Which is interesting because there is at least one iOS moba which looks better and has better production values: link to

    • Koozer says:

      It’s okay. It’s exactly as fiddly to control as you would expect for a tablet based MOBA though.

  18. Gog Magog says:


    But not this tripe. Crytek, you’re not a swan. You don’t get to… well, you know. The ones like you simply fade.

  19. milton says:

    I still can’t believe that MOBA’s are still trying to aim for an even more simplified LoL.

    Dawngate’s probably in my opinion the closest thing to a ‘new’ moba, while more simplified than LoL, it does have it’s own system that diverges from the regular LoL path. This looks like another MOBA that aims for the casual market.

    My gripe is that every new moba we see continues on the trend of simplification and lowering the barrier for entry, however at the cost of game depth and complexity. If you”ve ever played Dota 2, the one thing you cant claim is that it is not a deep game.

    Ah well, they get points for trying, it doesn’t cost me anything to ignore it. At least Alice in Wonderland as a playable character is actually really cool in my opinion.

    • Kitsunin says:

      I like Strife, personally. I’d say it’s more complex than LoL, at least if you ignore metagame shenanigans that you won’t figure out naturally…yet it manages to be considerably more forgiving and easy to understand, also, more action-y.

      It seems to me that things like this, specifically, are probably going to feel like lunchbreak MOBA’s. They’ll be simple and easy to pop into, no stress, but you’ll probably play them more like an FPS, or something you just pop into for some catharsis. I guess that’s cool…I like MOBA’s.

  20. Elos says:

    Quit doing Riot’s PR work for them (using the term “MOBA”)

    • Xocrates says:

      Funnily enough, the only reason people know MOBA was coined by Riot is because the people saying not to use it keep mentioning it, so the only reason it’s PR for Riot is because of the people who don’t want it to be PR.

  21. Hmm-Hmm. says:

    Looks rather awful, but I can’t say I was waiting for yet another DotA-style game.