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Critical Hit: Connect the DOTAs

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Ciber 17th September 2011, 12:35 Quote
Quote:
Except Alien Swarm, which was tosh.
It was tosh at the great price of £0 when free to play was not really the done thing, plus lots of people liked it for some unknown reason so that makes it great value tosh!

I'm actually looking forward to DOTA2 because Valve are making it. Which means even if it is a load of toss it will be well polished and should work perfectly on day one unlike Demigod. Plus it will likely have some noob friendly aspects unlike DOTA or LoL or HoN or Demigod. That said I did have lots of fun playing Demigod. When it worked. Same goes for Blizzards effort really.
loftie 17th September 2011, 13:23 Quote
I liked Alien Swarm - didnt play it for long as there was not much too it, but it was fun to play.

LoL is an ok game. I say ok because it can be really fun or downright horrible to play. But with little in the way of a proper introduction, it is hard to get into and get going. I'm looking forward to DOTA 2 simply because it'll add some more competition in the area, but from what I remember seeing of the streams, it didnt look to good to me. Though I could just be me remembering it wrong :P
the_kille4 17th September 2011, 13:28 Quote
There is also another aspect that I'd like to add. True the gaming experience plays a vital factor to its popularity but also whether it catches the attention of gamers. For instance LoL had the disadvantage of not being locally available, yet since a community of LoL gamers were built withing my circle of friends, it allowed itself to be elevated into a status where it was awesome. Even though, people had to force the program to essentially try to recognize through a proxy server in the US, people still held on to the game. The free to play essence was another beneficial factor that must not be forgotten since it allows the entry barrier to the game lowered.
Mentai 17th September 2011, 13:29 Quote
I hope Valve miraculously has a great community and matchmaking for dota 2, I really like the genre but the games are terrible when the teams are uneven. I've played dota 1 lan a couple of times with total noobs (it was the first time I played as well so I was even worse) and actually had a tremendous amount of fun. Playing with better gamers eliminated that in an instant though. Once the opposition gets on a roll, killing you -> earning money -> buying better weapons -> repeat, you're outmatched for the next 20 min and it's depressing as hell.

tldr; I want to get into Dota2 but am terrible at this genre, so I hope Valve can match me to other noobs.
vdbswong 17th September 2011, 15:17 Quote
TBH these days if anyone tells me that LoL and DotA/HoN are virtually the same, i feel that they really don't have a grasp of each of the games and IMO shouldn't be commenting on the subject too critically.

Yes, the overall objective is the same, and the map is similar, but the fact that the different online communities are so divided is indicative of how each game varies.

To comment on a few points in the article:
Quote:
Their art styles are largely identical.

Sorry... what?

HoN has a very old school WC3 style with a dark colour palette.

LoL is much more clean cut, "cartoon-ish" and more vibrant.

DotA2 has smoothed out a lot of the harsh edges but is a similar mix of both the above styles.

All in all, none of the games look the same and i've seen lots of people put off LoL just because it seems too "childish". On the other hand i dislike the HoN art style because it's too drab and dreary.
Quote:
The main map on which people play actually is identical

Wrong again.

I got caught out in the DotA2 thread from the Gaming forum when i thought the HoN and DotA2 map were the same. There are different routes in the jungle (the forest in between lanes) and they differ with regards to where they exit into the lanes.

The LoL map also has different jungle paths and camps, not to mention that the map is a lot smaller. Then there's also the fact that LoL added the concept of "brush" to the map where champions can hide unseen to those outside the brush.

All in all, the only thing you can say about the maps is that they're similar (three lanes, forest in between), but to call them "actually identical" is ridiculous.
Quote:
League of Legends, for instance, has a second map with a Capture and Hold mode called Dominion on the way.

Actually, this would be the 3rd map (4th if you include the cancelled Magma Chamber) since they released the 3v3 Twisted Treeline map quite a while ago.
Quote:
Hardcore fans won't touch them unless they offer the DOTA experience

Again, i'd point out that the constant flame wars between HoN and LoL fans (as well as original DotA fans) are indicative of just how different the games are and reminds me of the Battlefield vs. Call of Duty arguments that get thrown around.

From what i've seen:

DotA vets either play LoL because it's a refreshing take on the genre, or avoid it like the plague because it changes the formula too much.

Some moved to HoN because it was originally a clone in terms of mechanics and features, but are now getting disillusioned with it because they've started to move away, especially in terms of champion design.

Ultimately those that play LoL atm won't be too likely to move due to essentially "moving back" to old gameplay mechanics. And from my point of view it's HoN that stands the most to lose in terms of player base since they were aiming for the authentic DotA experience in the first place.

---

I've been annoyed with previous bit-tech articles which seems to be a rather critical article made by a (no offence Richard) relatively uninformed opinion. The last article IMO was Clive's SWTOR article which was bordering ridiculous/flamebaiting.

This article at least has the benefit of offering some decent points, yet it's in between various criticisms that i wouldn't see as valid.

/Rant Over.
wafflesomd 17th September 2011, 16:14 Quote
LoL was easily the most boring game I've ever played.


Quote:
Originally Posted by vdbswong


Actually, this would be the 3rd map

I thought the dominion trailer was hilarious. "All New Map".
RichardC 17th September 2011, 17:20 Quote
@vdbswong - Aware of all these things, but none of them change the basic discussion. To the general audience this article was written for and whose response to the game is being looked at as something interesting, those are small details at best (and are mentioned in passing near the start, although even on the internet, wordcounts mean there's limited space to go into things). Most Match-3 and hidden object games have differences between them too, but not enough that they can't be discussed as a group.

The LoL map thing is an editing glitch. The original copy said "League of Legends for instance has a second map, with a Capture And Hold mode called Dominion on the way."
Yslen 17th September 2011, 18:45 Quote
Seeing as Dota 2 seems to be going the HoN route of trying to be as close to the original mod as possible, I can't see it doing particularly well. League of Legends is popular because it is relatively approachable and Riot has a sense of humour. The champions are fun (Gentleman Cho'Gath anyone?) rather than cheesy generic fantasy characters. Factor in the willingness of Riot to mess with the formula and introduce new and interesting ideas and it's fairly obvious (at least in my opinion) which game has a real future. Valve is talking about recreating glitches that were present in the original mod and exploited in competitive play. Seriously? That's going to get you lots of players! <rolls eyes>. If anything, the high profile launch of Dota 2 will draw people to the genre where they'll promptly start playing League of Legends.
vdbswong 17th September 2011, 20:59 Quote
Thanks for taking the time to reply Richard,
Quote:
Originally Posted by RichardC
The LoL map thing is an editing glitch. The original copy said "League of Legends for instance has a second map, with a Capture And Hold mode called Dominion on the way."

I shall retract that point then =].
Quote:
Originally Posted by RichardC
@vdbswong - Aware of all these things, but none of them change the basic discussion. To the general audience this article was written for and whose response to the game is being looked at as something interesting, those are small details at best (and are mentioned in passing near the start, although even on the internet, wordcounts mean there's limited space to go into things). Most Match-3 and hidden object games have differences between them too, but not enough that they can't be discussed as a group.

I understand the limitations of word counts, and the need to generalise certain aspects to stop it sounding too technical/boring to the uninitiated.

However from a gaming site i expect them to recognise and address the actual differences the same way i'd expect a sports site to differentiate American Football and Rugby as different sports (for example) - I personally see them both having pointy ball and being full contact sports, but remove the armor and standardise the goal posts and i'd be hard pressed to tell you which was which.

The fact is that the maps aren't identical, if they were just recolours/retextures (e.g. Summoner's Rift Autumn/Summer/Winter) then i could see your point, but there are actual difference in the actual pathing (no matter how "insignificant" they seem).

I also still disagree with the art style and were this a more popular genre it'd be akin to saying that Modern Warfare 3 and Battlefield 3 look identical. It may seem that way to the untrained eye, but to those with experience it's a rather ridiculous statement to make.

With regards to Match-3 games, i'd argue that from my (lack of) experience they seem somewhat simplistic (at least the premise is) and there isn't really too much room to deviate. However in your own article state that whilst the premise sounds simple, there's a lot more to keep track of during the game itself. It's the changes in these things which all add up and give a completely different gameplay experience.

---

Ultimately i understand that the point of your article wasn't exactly an analysis of the various nuances within the DotA genre, but more how the original concept can be reused so much without necessarily suffering the failures that would happen in other genres (as you pointed out a CS:S clone generally implies it's somewhat of a lesser experience).

However i feel that in order to get your point across you came across as a somewhat ignorant in the genre.
Quote:
Originally Posted by wafflesomd
LoL was easily the most boring game I've ever played.

Oh it's definitely not for everyone.

But then the same could be said of almost any game/genre.

I do agree that the DotA genre has a much higher "entry threshold" compared to other genres however.
metarinka 20th September 2011, 03:17 Quote
All my friends are hardcore LoL, Dota or HoN players. I can't get into them. It goes instinctually against all my FPS instincts to hit a player, run away, turn around, run towards them, hit them, run away. I know there's more to the game than that. To the casual observer it seems if everyone is schizophrenic or playing a game of tag.

Plus they have a pretty steep learning curve, you basically become cannon fodder for the experienced players. I would say at least in an FPS or an MMORPG you have a *chance* of killing the super-duper good player, in those games it's basically a long drawn out 20 minutes of agonizing defeat
ssj12 20th September 2011, 07:01 Quote
I love how this article completely ignores League of legend's other map Twisted Treeline which is 3v3... nice fail there...

Also it seems the author forgets the PopCap is owned by EA now so we might as well forget the idea we will see anything good come out of them again.
DrugCrazed 26th September 2011, 11:12 Quote
But Awesomenauts was awesome at EG and that was a MOBA!
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