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Dota 2's black hole creating hero, Enigma, sees increased play after Powehi image

This week we got a peek through the vastness of space, with the release of the very first image of a black hole ever captured by humans. Not long after, more players were making similar vast, galaxy destroying horrors in Dota 2 thanks to the abilities of mysterious hero Enigma. Correlation doesn’t equal causation and all that, but it’s not hard to imagine people getting nudged towards the character. After all, what’s more human than seeing an incomprehensible celestial object and wanting one of your very own?

According to statistics website Dotabuff, in a screenshot shared to Reddit by a user called S0me1guy, Enigma’s usage and wins ticked up after we all got to see that glowing cosmic doughnut. Both are only up by a small percentage, but with so many characters (and people playing), it’s noticeable. Is it statistically significant? If I knew that much maths I would be studying the space wonders.

As I said, I can see people being drawn to mess around with Enigma’s very appropriate “black hole” ability, which disables, silences, spins, and harms affected enemies after pulling them in. But why the associated uptick in win rate? S0me1guy suggests “most people who are picking enigma more are people who already have him in their hero pool” (i.e., have the practice to make him good when they choose to play as him). Alternatively, it’s the untapped power of the universe influencing how well people play Valve’s 2013 MOBA. Make your own mind up.

The other alternative is that it’s a coincidence (albeit a neat one anyway). If you look at the trends for the last 30 days, Enigma’s win rate has been pinging-ponging about all month, not just last week. But I’m not about to question the power of unknowable space entities.

Peeking at those stats also shows a similar rise in Enigma play between March 22nd and 24th. What siren call was our new black hole friend putting out then? It’s a mystery – nay, an enigma.

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Jay Castello

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Jay writes about video games, falls down endless internet rabbit holes, and takes a lot of pictures of flowers.

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