Posts Tagged ‘Dota 2’

We asked Dota 2’s Frostivus contest participants about spec work

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Frostivus is coming, but it’s not designed by the people you might expect. Frostivus is the Christmas event that Valve used to run for Dota 2 every year, though their last effort was way back in 2014. This year, Valve are turning to their modding community to revive the event in the form of a contest, with a $30,000 prize for the winner. I spoke to several participants about their games, and how they feel about doing what many would consider as spec work.

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Best PC games of all time

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There are more wonderful games being released on PC each month than ever before. In such a time of plenty, it’s important that you spend your time as wisely as possible. Thankfully, we’re here to help. What follows are our picks for the best PC games ever made. Read the rest of this entry »

Dota 2’s matchmaking update introduces rank medals

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With Dota 2’s Duelling Fates update just behind us — read what Matt made of the update — Valve’s been fiddling around with the ranked matchmaking system, to coincide with the start of the new ranked season. Players will be able to earn rank medals for their profile, showing off their best performance level for the season. And don’t worry — no matter how many rough games you have, your medal won’t decrease once you’ve earned it.

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Dota 2 is more interesting than ever with the Duelling Fates update

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Dota 2 gets a major patch about once a year, and it’s always A Big Deal. Old strategies have to be thrown out of the window as the metagame and individual players adjust to the changes, and the 7.07 Duelling Fates update is an even bigger shakeup than usual.

The update adds two new heroes, five new items and overhauls the talent tree system that Valve introduced last year. Many abilities have been tweaked too, and multiple changes to how XP is gained from lane creeps has altered the flow of every game. As we haven’t had a new character since Monkey King last December, those two new heroes will be the most exciting addition for most people so I’ll dive into them first.

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Dota 2 adds two new heroes in Duelling Fates update

Two brand new heroes have arrived in Dota 2 with the launch of version 7.07, the long-awaited Duelling Fates update. Please welcome to the battle arena Dark Willow, a spoOoky nuker, and the zippy swordsman Pangolier. They’re the first new heroes added since the Monkey King way back in December 2016. The update is far bigger than just this pair, also adding new items, a new model for Ancient Apparition, seasons for ranked play, and oodles of skill changes and balance tweaks. Read the rest of this entry »

Podcast: Middle-earth: Shadow of War, The Evil Within 2 and our nemeses

Nemesis this

Who’s your worst nemesis? This week the RPS podcast, the Electronic Wireless Show, is talking about our most reviled enemies, against whom we hold deep, lasting grudges. Matt harbours a lasting bitterness for Silencer, the magic-cancelling war jerk of Dota 2. Adam is fuelled by a dark hatred for the final boss of Ancient Domains of Mystery, a giant ‘@’ symbol called Andor Drakon. And I still maintain a grievance against an entire electricity company in Final Fantasy VII. They killed my friends.

And speaking of nemeses, we’ve had plenty of time to play Middle-earth: Shadow of War, the icon-hoovering game of anti-establishment orcs, which has us divided. The Evil Within 2 also gets some attention, as Adam runs from spectres and fails to stealth-kill hideous monsters, and I am publicly shamed in Tekken 7 by a robot who takes off her head and throws it at me.
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Former Valve artist’s portfolio includes mystery co-op fantasy game, rad female TF2 characters

Valve Software might possibly be making a cooperative fantasy game, or have at one time worked on, or thought about making, or doodled some ideas for one. This revelation comes from concept art in the portfolio of former Valve artist Drew Wolf. “The project was a fantasy adventure game centered around cooperative combat and driven by story,” he says, though he doesn’t explicitly say the character sketches were for Valve, simply referring it as an “internal R&D project”. So maybe it maybe it never got beyond the R&D stage, maybe it wasn’t even for Valve, or maybe it’ll be Valve’s next game.

The point is: oh hot damn, Wolf also drew some ace concepts for female Team Fortress 2 characters, come look at these. Read the rest of this entry »

Steam now fighting review bombs with diagrams

All social problems can be solved by data, any naive tech company can tell you, which is why Valve are attempting to solve Steam ‘review bombing’ by adding graphs to its player reviews. Review bombing is the practice of players organising to leave negative reviews that drive down a game’s rating in an attempt to punish or manipulate developers by damaging their future sales prospects. Games bombed over the past month range from Firewatch to Grand Theft Auto V. This is a known and old problem with Steam’s reviews, and one Valve aren’t happy with. So, to counterattack disproportionate bursts of negative reviews, Valve have added unusual activity warnings to Steam store pages with histograms tracking reviews over time. Read the rest of this entry »

Dota 2 bringing Festivus back through contest

After an initial wild burst of Dota 2 [official site] enthusiasm celebrating every holiday on the calendar with special events (who could forget 2013’s Urology Awareness Month minigame?), Valve have become quite bad at festivities. They’ve not celebrated Halloween (aka Diretide) or Crimble (Frostivus) properly since 2014, and their absence has been felt. Good news: Frostivus will return this year. Weird news: it’s returning through a contest asking players to create and submit modes. Unrelated news: the next big Dota 2 update, which will add two new heroes is still over a month away. Read the rest of this entry »

Dota 2’s Siltbreaker co-op campaign concluded

The Dota 2 [official site] cooperative campaign Siltbreaker concluded with the launch of Act II on Friday. The campaign, which is only available to folks who buy Dota’s latest Battle Pass tournament sticker album, is a bit bum but it does at least now have an easier mode. Those who want treasures and cheevies can still grind their faces against Siltbreaker’s boring difficulty but girls who just wanna have fun can play in the easier ‘Adventure Mode’. It still won’t be good but it will be less of a chore. Read the rest of this entry »

The International 2017: Three teams standing, two new heroes, and one TERRIFYING AI

Dueling Fates update

The final day of The International 2017 looms, with only Newbee, LGD.Forever Young (LFY) and Team Liquid still in the running to win pro Dota 2’s highest accolade – yesterday saw both Invictus Gaming and LGD Gaming eliminated in surprisingly one-sided lower bracket matches.

But first… new heroes! Read the rest of this entry »

The International 2017: Five Dota 2 teams remain – who are they and how are they doing?

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Four days into the main event and The International 2017 – Dota 2’s $24 million world championship – is down to its final five teams. Only Newbee, LGD.Forever Young, Team Liquid, Invictus Gaming and LGD Gaming remain, the other eleven squads to grace the main stage of Seattle’s KeyArena having fallen from the lower bracket and out of contention for the trophy. Read the rest of this entry »

Valve announce Artifact, a Dota 2 spin-off card game

Valve last night announced Artifact, a new card game based on Dota 2. I can tell you that Artifact is coming in 2018 and sounds like it broadly simulates a game of Dota, with lanes to push and Dota heroes to command, but Valve haven’t shown anything concrete yet. For a company that often sets trends, this does seem curiously late – the world is hardly short of digital card games these days, and this isn’t even the first card game spun off from a MOBA (Smite Tactics springs to mind, for starters). But hey, I’m always interested in what Valve are up to and Artifact does sound quite different to the usual Magic: The Gathering ’em ups. Read the rest of this entry »

Dota 2: Everything you need to know for The International 2017 main event!

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The main event of Dota 2’s premier mega-tournament, The International 2017, kicks off today – and the first round of matches has been decided by a group stage full of surprises. Here’s everything you need to know to get you up to speed (or to bluff your way through a conversation with Dota-loving friends!) Read the rest of this entry »

Dota 2’s $23.3m tournament kicks off!

The International 2017

1. The International 2017 – the seventh annual Dota 2 [official site] megatournament has just started and there’s a noteworthy $23.3m prize pool at stake.

2. I forgot to tell you that before it got underway because I was having a capslock conversation with Alice about how DEREK ACORAH AND PAUL DANAN ARE IN THE CELEBRITY BIG BROTHER HOUSE TOGETHER RIGHT NOW.

3. There is a whole amazing guide to all the teams in the running for slices of that prize money pie by our James which will help fairweather fans get a handle on proceedings. Read the rest of this entry »

The International 2017: Your guide to the biggest tournament in professional Dota 2!

The International, Dota 2

The International, Dota 2’s biggest competitive event (as well as esports’ most moneyed), returns to Seattle this week. This is the culmination of Dota’s year-long season schedule – all of it, all the Majors, third-party tournaments and rosters shuffles, have led to this 18-way showdown where over $23 million is up for grabs. Here’s our James to explain what you’re watching and give you crucial backstory for all of the teams! Read the rest of this entry »

Dota 2 rolls out friendly welcome wagon for noobs

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You know how sometimes you go to the swimming pool and in the grown-up full size bit there are boring lanes and people who tell you off for having fun but in the baby section there are inflatables and everyone is friendly and sometimes there’s a blow-up tropical island with a slide and you wish you could go in that pool instead of the boring adult pool even though there is also a lot of wee in there which you try not to think about?

That is how I feel about the newcomer-friendly changes to Dota 2 [official site]. Valve are making it NICER and more MANAGEABLE. No-one has mentioned a tropical island with a slide, but maybe it’s being kept secret. If it is I will KICK OFF. Read the rest of this entry »

What I learned playing Dota 2 with a professional player

Beat the Legends

Our James ventured out of unranked solo queue and ended up on a Dota 2 [official site] team captained by a professional player and being streamed to thousands as some of the most famous casters in the scene commentated his efforts. No pressure, then! Here’s a little account of what happened and some advice for if you ever find yourself in this not-at-all-highly-specific situation…

Last Thursday, Dota 2 production studio and general community hub joinDOTA hosted Beat The Legends, a rather unusual showmatch: while both teams would be led by a bonafide professional player, the remaining eight positions would be filled by members of the Dota-playing public, or at least those who entered and won the random draw. The pros would be Crescendo captain and on-again, off-again analyst Troels “SyndereN” Nielsen, and Henrik “Admiral Bulldog” Ahnberg, champion of The International 2013, former Alliance offlaner and Europe’s most popular streamer.

One of the randomers would be, unfortunately for everyone else, me. Read the rest of this entry »

Dota 2 newcomer stream returns to megabucks tourney

The International 2017

With mega Dota 2 [official site] competition The International 2017 on the esports horizon, Valve have gone into more detail about what fans can expect from the tournament. There’s a new host in the form of Sean “Day9” Plott (you might know him from his work in the pro StarCraft scene, the Hearthstone scene, or the pro Dota 2 scene, or for hosting cheery fanzine PC Gamer’s E3 event) some scheduling details and HOLLER TO ALL OF YOU WHO WANTED IT BACK because the newcomer stream is happening again. Read the rest of this entry »