“Welcome to Summoner’s Rift” one might say or a journey to the “World of the Ancients” for others. Let me give you a brief introduction to the genre of gaming that changed the landscape of Esports in the past few years and still continues to take momentum as it take its reach from desktop computers/Laptops to handheld devices (mobile phones).
This is a brief but knowledge-filled reading experience about the genre no one expected to take the gaming scene by storm, this is MOBA the genre that gave some athletic sports a run for their money, the genre that gave a couple of teenage/young adult’s superstar status and held as home town heroes of their respected countries.
So let me introduce it to you the gaming genre known as M.O.B.A.
MOBA or Multiplayer Online Battle Arena is a type of game played on an isometric perspective viewed map, were teams consisting of 5 players each. The main objective is to destroy the prime structures of the opposing team with the help of AI-controlled units (creeps). Also, each player can choose an array of characters that have unique playstyle, look, set of skills and roles. In which these characters gain levels as the game progresses by means of killing the opponent’s team creeps and the opponent themselves, also gold is gained to use for purchasing items that would help bolster your character’s strength.
But some MOBA’s have unique objectives and conditions for winning (ie., Heroes of the Storm).
MOBA’s are a blend of real-time strategy, role-playing, and action games. Also, MOBA’s do not allow players to build structures, everything in the map is made all you have to do is stick to the main objective of the game.
Creeps be with you!
Here are some common elements found in every MOBA game.
These are your main unit, the characters you control and command. All MOBA’s have a unique array of these characters also the play style varies depending on the position they play in the game.
The term in which the heroes/champions play style falls and these are the categories:
Mid/Mage/Assassins, Tank/Bruisers, Carry both Ranged and Melee, Offlane/Jungler and the most fun of all, the benevolent Support role.
These are the objectives, the one that must be destroyed or protected to attain advantage in this type of game, they also hold monetary value (gold)
“Defend the Land and defend it you shall, for you’ll lose if you don’t”
The experience walking, gold carrying, lane striding buddies of battle. These dudes are your team’s foot soldiers ready to kill and be killed in the field of battle but some of them are not meant to join on your team, some tend to hang out on the sides or play the scary final boss type that holds unique rewards depending on the MOBA you’re playing.
These are the designated place that dictates the position of champions/heroes role, it is divided into 3 sections Mid which is the center position, Top the upper position in the map and lastly, the bottom found — yeah, you’ve guessed it at the bottom part of the map. Another is the jungle which is found all around the whole battlefield. each team has a designated spot of this place
I guess it’s time to introduce the well-known games of these genres and a little information as well.
The Faces that run the place!
Let’s start with the mac daddy of the bunch, the one that put the MOBA genre into the gaming world…
This game actually started as a MOD for the game Warcraft by video game designer named IceFrog using the game’s world editor program. And the rest is history, the MOD gained so much popularity worldwide that it took the gaming world by storm and ushered a new breed of gamers both casual and professionals alike. It also ushered in a new type of genre for games, the genre called MOBA.
Though Starcraft did have a MOBA type MOD called “Aeon of Strife” in which DotA took inspiration.
DotA brought the genre to the spotlight with its unique style of gaming and strategy.
Time passed by and DotA decline in popularity as other types of MOBA games sprung out of the woodwork (League of Legends, Heroes of Newerth, etc.), But a gaming company Valve took in DotA, Remade and Developed it thus, Dota 2 is born. Like father, like son Dota 2 also took spotlight and brought back the old players of the game to the new platform. As the years passed, the gaming scene for Dota 2 grew and in its growth “The International” is born a prestigious tournament held once a year, where 18 top teams compete for the coveted Aegis of the Immortal trophy. This tournament also boasts the highest prize pool in all gaming, the 9th The International offered a prize pool of $34,000,000 dollars.
The current back to back champions Team OG became millionaires by winning 2 consecutive TI tournaments (TI8, TI9). They have earned $15,603,132 this TI9 that was held in Shanghai China
Team captain N0tail (Johan Sudstein) earned $6,886,181.99 yeah he became a millionaire playing Dota 2, deal with it.
Up next is the game that challenged the throne, welcome to the League of Legend spotlight.
League of Legends:
In 2009, Riot games gave us a game that took the reigns as the scene for DotA was fading. League of Legends also LoL gave gamers a new and unique mechanics that would later change the structure for MOBA type of games, it became popular so much that it produced some of the most noticeable professional gamers known today. For example, the Korean gaming superstar Lee-sang Hyeok best called by his in-game name as “Faker.” This player held titles over titles in his rack and even gave his team SKT T1 three World championship trophies (2013,2015,2016).
For that he is held as one of the greatest gamers in all Esports, now back to the League, it is so widespread in popularity that every region in the world has their very own championship series, the most notable of these are the LCS for north America, the LPL for China, LEC for Europe and lastly LCK for South Korea.
As soon as the series ends and all of the top teams are selected for every region to battle it out in the WORLDS tournament that is held every year and claim and raise the “Summoners Cup.”
Lastly, the new player in the game, though they are considered a small portion in the scene, this game is still popular in our country.
And this is my Legendary intro for this game.
Mobile Legends Bang – Bang:
The game that shook some shoulders and heads for copyright issues most recent is the Riot Games lawsuit. Developed by Moonton this game garnered so much attention especially in South-East Asia thus a large number of mobile phone users got hooked in this game and played it with mix emotions.
Mobile Legends like DotA brought light to the genre in a new platform, Mobile Phones, though they are not the first to do so (i.e., Vain Glory). Still, the easy accessibility and multi downloadable format (can be played in IOS and Andriod) helped out the game to burst out and brought new gamers in the playing field, sadly some of them took this idea so much that they sometimes disclose the illustrious history of MOBA and attribute it only to this game.
Still, this game gave our country new life in the gaming scene, so much life that in this game the Philippines is considered a powerhouse in South-East Asia. Teams like Aether, Bren Esports and many others held the pride of the country in every Mobile Legend tournament across South East Asia.
Also, this game ushered in streaming stars left and right across the globe as the game continues to grow.
MOBA is here and it’s making a mark since the arrival of DotA and whether it is played in PC or in Mobile phones, the objective is still the same, be Beyond godlike in every game or Legendary it doesn’t matter as long as you enjoy the game.
And for this type of game to captivate the hearts and minds of the people, I’m proud to say that I am one of those people. I’ve watched its growth from internet cafe’s to the mainstream TV broadcast even tournaments that fill up stadiums only basketball games can fill up.
So grab those keyboards and mouse, fire up the PC, hold onto your mobile phones and be summoned inside the field of battle.
Thanks for reading.
“This writer has been slain.”