Valve Announces Dota 2 for PC and Mac in 2011

By Brian Leahy, Oct 13, 2010 10:24am PDT As promised, Valve has officially announced Dota 2, its project with DotA-Allstar's current developer IceFrog, for the PC and Mac to be released sometime in 2011 (via GameInformer)

The game is essentially Defense of the Ancients-Allstars and the Warcraft III mod's full 100+ character roster is being brought over in its entirety. The gameplay will also be unchanged.

"Our first reaction is to assume that [design elements are] there for a reason," project lead Erik Johnson explains. "IceFrog is one of the smartest designers we've ever met. He's made so many good decisions over the years in building the product. He virtually never makes a decision that doesn't have some reasoning behind it and a way to pick apart the logic behind it."

Dota 2, as a Valve project, will naturally use the Source Engine, which will get improvements to the global lighting engine along with true cloth simulation. Dota 2 will also gain integrated voice chat from its move outside of a Warcraft III mod. Dota 2 adds AI bots for disconnected players and for practice games, but there will not be a singleplayer campaign.

Steamworks will also be getting an overhaul for Dota 2 with support for in-game rewards, which can be earned by participating in the Dota 2 community. "Everything from unlocking new skins for your favorite hero to getting a unique title for writing a strategy guide is on the table," explains GameInformer. The improvements to both the Source Engine and Steamworks will be available to third-party developers after the launch of Dota 2.

Valve will also be adding a coaching system to the game, which will allow skilled players to log in as "coaches" and earn in-game rewards for highly-rated coaching, as voted by the students. A coach will be able to see the student's screen and give them tips and pointers over voice-chat.

"IceFrog was one of the smartest people we've ever met about doing that, and he was doing it with both hands tied behind his back, so to speak," said Valve founder Gabe Newell. He likens the future of Dota 2 as a "service" to that of Valve's Team Fortress 2. "Valve is going to keep building software around Dota and around the community and around Steamworks for Dota, but we're also going to build this system where the community can bring service to each other and be recognized for it," adds Johnson.

Dota 2, by all accounts, is a feature-laced port of the original DotA-Allstars to the Source Engine, not a new game. S2 Games (Heroes of Newerth) and Riot Games (League of Legends) both operate DotA-alike games, with HoN being much closer to the original DotA. League of Legends is quite different within the DotA sub-genre and is also free-to-play, supported by micro-transactions.

Valve's Dota 2 will be released in 2011 for the PC and Mac. Interested parties can find a lot more information over at Game Informer.

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  • I'm disappointed old mechanics like denial are in. The removal of things like that and the multiple shops and whatnot made the streamlined experience of LoL much more appealing to me, even for organized competitive play. Also, I would have expected the company that took out the genuinely terrible TFC grenades despite what the self-proclaimed pr0s demanded would have exercised better judgement.

    However, I'm sure their usual level of polish and ongoing updates will easily make up for it. The community involvement they describe is fantastic. I know this is a dreadfully overused phrase, but if it turns out as they promise then it might in fact revolutionize multiplayer gaming for the better. Imagine how different the SC2 community would be if it had this kind of mentorship system.

    Also I was eager to see what Valve's take on a fantasy setting would be and I was *not* disappointed. I really love this semi-realistic concept art style and I hope the game looks exactly like it. It manages to hit on familiar tropes in a positive way without being the same tired "swords and dragons and European style armour" sort of thing. I'm also really glad they didn't go with Blizzard's stupid "everything is chibi proportions" look.

    Time will tell if it lives up, but I'm pretty excited.

    An aside; I'm amazed how many people here don't RTFA and spout all these ridiculous claims of Valve stealing from indie devs, which are so stupid they're hardly worth bothering to refute.

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