About DOTA 2
DOTA 2 - Beware All Ye Who Enters Here
They're All Dead!
One MOBA to Rule Them All
DOTA 2 is an action-packed RTS MOBA game. This free-to-play game is the sequel to the Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos and The Frozen Throne mod, Defence of the Ancients. Dota 2 is a highly competitive team strategy game that requires constant adaptation and learning to solve new problems. Developed and published by Valve, DOTA 2 launched on July 9th, 2013, and is available for the Windows, Mac, and Linux operating systems via Steam.
As is commonly the case for MOBAs, DOTA 2 has two teams of five players, three lanes, towers, creeps, and bases. The goal of each match (which averages about 25-35 minutes) is to infiltrate the enemy base and destroy the enemy’s Ancient. Players have over 100 characters to choose from, which isn't unique to games of this style. However, DOTA 2 stands out with its last hits and denies. When a player lands a killing blow on another player, they’re rewarded extra gold and XP. To prevent enemies from gaining this advantage, a common play involves killing friendly units.
Concept Rating: 3/5
FPS Is King
While the developers of DOTA 2 have rolled out a series of updates since the beginning, graphics haven't changed from its initial release almost ten years ago. In typical MOBA fashion, DOTA 2 gives an overhead, third-person perspective of the battlefield, with 3D character models.
DOTA 2 demands speed and precision from its skilled players. While it can be run at lower FPS (which lends itself to its large audience), adjusting and maximizing your graphics settings will offer an experience that feels as if it’s another game entirely. Plenty of videos outlining the process and recommended settings exist for just this, and a good reason.
Heightened moments of stress and victory require a soundtrack of equally epic proportions. Plenty of DOTA players will tell you that they play with the sound muted (all the better to focus), but Valve has composed a soundtrack worthy of tabletop RPG playlists for Dungeons & Dragons.
Graphics & Audio Rating: 3/5
Everything Is Situational
Anyone familiar with DOTA will tell you that a mountainous learning curve is involved. With so many potential combinations and tactics, experimentation is necessary for improving your gameplay. One of the core joys of the game is that you never stop learning, and you’ll be constantly faced with creative problem-solving opportunities no matter how many hours you put in.
In a similar vein, DOTA 2 requires players to adapt at the drop of a hat. No one strategy will ever guarantee a win; everything is situational.
DOTA 2 is not an easy game to jump into, so we recommend you start by playing with a group of friends rather than invoke the wrath of heated strangers.
With average match times clocking in between 25 and 35 minutes, players will find an enjoyable distinction and space for early, mid, and late-game phases. That said, it is most certainly possible for some DOTA 2 matches to last over two hours, becoming a heart-racing experience that players will not forget.
Gameplay Rating: 4/5
Love To Hate It
As with most MOBAs, DOTA 2 is a polarizing game. Even gamers who love it with every fibre of their being will also admit to hating it. Still, it is hard to ignore reports of players having many hundreds of thousands of hours logged and even harder to deny the curiosity piqued when it comes to the low, low price of free.
Replay Value Rating: 5/5
So long as new players have the patience for the steep learning curve, gamers new to DOTA 2 can log thousands upon thousands of hours of exhilarating gameplay completely free.