MOBA competitors are gunning for LoL

This isn’t exactly fresh news, but I do think it’s interesting to see some of the tactics employed to unseat League of Legends as king of the MOBA world. As you probably heard, Heroes of Newerth went free-to-play over the weekend. The rollout included some interesting ads on various gaming sites. One such ad encourages players to “stop laughing” and “get serious.” I can only imagine that’s a dig at the LoL acronym everyone is using for League of Legends.

The more serious threat is obviously Valve and DotA 2. I wasn’t surprised to hear that the game would be unveiled at Gamescom – there had been rumors about the tournament for weeks – but the prize purse for the tournament shocked me. For those who aren’t up to speed, Valve is flying the top 16 DotA teams to Germany to compete for a $1 million prize purse. Yes, again, a million bucks. That’s not buy-a-new-computer-and-pay-for-college-supplies money. That is life-changing money, money that could support a professional gaming career into the forseeable future. The benefit to Valve for making that commitment is obvious – they want every competitive team to come play DotA 2.

Will it work? Absolutely. I cannot imagine any of the top teams in competitive strategy games not taking a crack at DotA 2 with that kind of prize purse available. As for HoN, well, I think the game has enough barriers to entry that players entrenched in other games are unlikely to leave.


Could we see Magma Chamber this week?


I don’t know how many of you are on Twitter, but the Riot staff has been teasing its followers this week with the promise of amazing content. If Dark Shurelia is to be believed, we may see Magma Chamber as early as this week.

The forums have been abuzz as well. RiotMontag said the amazing content we’ve been waiting for his coming “Not Soon. This Week.” I’m curious what that means, though. Are we going to see another Friday patch day like we did with Leona? For the Rioters’ sakes I hope that’s not the case – I would imagine the servers are going to need some attention over the weekend and no one likes working on the weekend.

This is the most buzz we’ve had surrounding League of Legends since Dreamhack, which I take as a truly positive sign. It seems like good timing, too. Valve just announced the first public showing of DotA 2 at a Gamescom tournament later this month. Oh, did I not mention that the purse for first prize in the tourney is a million bucks, USD? Yeah, you read that right. One million dollars cash to the first place team. Dreamhack was cool, but Valve is definitely sending a message to competitive players in just about every strategy game on the market. Can Riot’s news this week keep up?


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