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Posts with tag arts

Breakfast Topic: Do you have any MOBA experience?

For those unfamiliar, Heroes of the Storm belongs to the genre that's been referred to as MOBA -- Multiplayer Online Battle Arena. Valve calls its Dota 2 an ARTS, an Action Real Time Strategy, but since they're the only game that uses ARTS, let's stick with MOBA. I don't have much history with this genre of games and for good reason: I'm not a very competitive person. When I try to be competitive, I turn into a raging maniac and I'm not fan of being that guy. Unfortunately for me, MOBAs are an extremely competitive genre. I played two rounds in League of Legends a couple years back and decided to never touch it again. Heroes of the Storm's technical alpha has pulled me in due to its co-op mode, allowing you to play with a team of human players against a team of AI players. Having a strong co-op mode available might make me rage less when I take my chances at PVP.

I'm curious how many of you have tried a MOBA before, whether it be League of Legends, Dota 2, the original Defense of the Ancients mode in Warcraft III, or something else in the genre. Are you a MOBA veteran? Never touched one? Touched one but didn't like it? Whichever camp you fall in, are you going to try Heroes of the Storm when you get the chance?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics

The Lawbringer: Blizzard and Valve settle on DOTA

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Pop law abounds in The Lawbringer, your weekly dose of WoW, the law, video games and the MMO genre. Mathew McCurley takes you through the world running parallel to the games we love and enjoy, full of rules, regulations, and esoteroic topics that slip through the cracks.

One of the highest-profile disputes in the gaming industry has come to a settlement agreement. Blizzard has agreed that it will back off from Valve's use of the DOTA trademark for commercial use, while Blizzard retains noncommercial use of the term for modders, map creators, and the community revolving around the game. In addition to the commercial/non-commercial separation, Blizzard has officially changed the name of its upcoming Blizzard DOTA to Blizzard All-Stars, so expect a new branding push soon. At the end of the day, I am still bewildered as to why we're fighting over DOTA, an acronym and phrase that comes packed with baggage and various connotations.

Back in 2010, Rob Pardo told Eurogamer essentially that trademarking DOTA was a slap in the face to the community that created the genre, and for a company that built a great deal of its success on mods, it seemed genuinely out of place for Valve. While everything is always about money, sometimes things are about money just a little less. With its own products announced using the DOTA name and former-DOTA developers having joined S2 Games and Riot Games to create Heroes of Newerth and League of Legends respectively, the MOBA genre is healthy.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, The Lawbringer

Rumble Between the Junglers: How the DotA fight began

Pop law abounds in The Lawbringer, your weekly dose of WoW, the law, video games and the MMO genre. Mathew McCurley takes you through the world running parallel to the games we love and enjoy, full of rules, regulations, and esoteroic topics that slip through the cracks.

Defense of the Ancients is a genre all unique to itself. Sure, the concepts are not brand new and the bulk of the original game was created using the Warcraft III World Editor, but the lasting appeal and standing reverence of the DotA genre continues today and shows no sign of slowing down. Part tower defense, part real-time strategy unit movement, this game type has experienced astounding growth all over the world over the last decade. As the genre grows, Defense of the Ancients-style games, or MOBAs (multiplayer online battle arenas), or ARTS (action real-time strategy), or... wait... what are we calling this genre?

My initial reaction to the entire naming fiasco was wonderfully summed up by Joystiq's own JC Fletcher: "Which giant company has the rights to the fan-created, community-promoted word 'Dota?'" He's right to be cynical -- justice will be meted out over a word that was born in the Blizzard maps community because of the actions of two super-huge gaming companies. That's not all there is to the story, however.

Therein lies the crux of the hot topic of the day -- Blizzard has finally thrown in its opposition of Valve's attempt to trademark the name Dota for its upcoming release of DOTA 2, a literal successor to the original DotA throne. The problem is that there are a whole bunch more facts, people, and anecdotes in this story than most people know.

I wrote a short post on the Dota trademark issue a few days ago that served as the basic of basics, what the news was about. Here's the short version: Valve is attempting to trademark a name that many gamers (and companies) consider to be a general term for the genre rather than the proper name for the game that spawned the genre. Hell, it could be both.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, The Lawbringer

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