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News / Dota 2 Confirmed Free to Play
« on: June 02, 2012, 10:02:02 AM »

Valve has confirmed Dota 2 to be free-to-play, along with a a few additional changes and an early access package for $39.99.
Today we’re announcing that Dota 2 will be free to play, and contain an in-game store where you’ll be able to buy fancy gear to customize your heroes. From the forum threads we’ve read over the months since The International, it’s pretty clear that this won’t come as much of a surprise to anyone out there. There are a variety of smaller details that we’ve decided to put together a FAQ to help with, but we wanted to address the two most common concerns right away:
  • Dota 2 will not be a pay-to-win game. All the items in the store are cosmetic, and don’t affect gameplay.
  • All of the heroes will be available free of charge. We believe restricting player access to heroes could be destructive to game design, so it’s something we plan to avoid.



Blizzard has dropped a short-and-sweet press release (reprinted below) informing us that it has landed on a "mutual agreement" with Valve regarding the contested "DOTA" trademark. DOTA, of course, stands for "Defense of the Ancients," which is a fanmade map and mode for Blizzard's Warcraft 3, originally based on a Starcraft map. Developer "IceFrog," who's overseen the DOTA map since 2005, has gone to work for Valve on DOTA 2, while Blizzard has been working on its official variation of the game, previously called Blizzard DOTA.

The mutual agreement means that Valve will get the rights to use the "DOTA" trademark commercially, so DOTA 2's name won't change. Blizzard reserves the right for fans to use the trademark noncommercially, but will give up the DOTA name for its official variant. That game will instead be called Blizzard All-Stars, "which ultimately better reflects the design of our game," said Blizzard executive VP Rob Pardo. "We look forward to going into more detail on that at a later date."

Valve's Gabe Newell also gave comment, saying that Valve is "pleased that we could come to an agreement with Blizzard without drawing things out in a way that would benefit no one." Blizzard All-Stars doesn't have a release date yet, and DOTA 2 is due out next year.

Blizzard Entertainment and Valve Announce DOTA Trademark Agreement
 May 11, 2012 –Blizzard Entertainment and Valve today announced a mutual agreement regarding concerns over the names of upcoming products. In accordance with the agreement, Valve will continue to use DOTA commercially, including DOTA 2, while Blizzard will preserve noncommercial use of DOTA for its community with regard to player-created maps for Warcraft III and StarCraft II.
  "Both Blizzard and Valve recognize that, at the end of the day, players just want to be able to play the games they're looking forward to, so we're happy to come to an agreement that helps both of us stay focused on that," said Rob Pardo, executive vice president of game design at Blizzard Entertainment. "As part of this agreement, we're going to be changing the name of Blizzard DOTA to Blizzard All-Stars, which ultimately better reflects the design of our game. We look forward to going into more detail on that at a later date."
  "We're pleased that we could come to an agreement with Blizzard without drawing things out in a way that would benefit no one," said Gabe Newell, president and co-founder of Valve. "We both want to focus on the things our fans care about, creating and shipping great games for our communities."
  The companies do not plan to discuss the terms of the agreement beyond today's announcement.

Source: Joystiq

News / 'DOTA 2' will be free-to-play 'with a twist,' says Gabe Newell
« on: April 21, 2012, 10:29:56 AM »
The sequel to Defense of the Ancients (DOTA) will be free-to-play "with a twist", according to the co-founder of Valve, Gabe Newell.

Speaking on a yet to be released podcast shared by the producers early with Polygon, Newell told Seven Day Cooldown that the PC and Mac-compatible real-time strategy game will use a free-to-play funding model, but one that hasn't been used in any other game before.
"It's going to be free-to-play -- it'll have some twists, but that's the easiest way for people to think about it," Newell said.

The full podcast from Seven Day Cooldown will be released later today.

Source: The Verge

General / Dota 2 Beta Key Giveaway
« on: December 23, 2011, 08:14:30 PM »
Anyone wanna try their luck?

A bunch of screenshots were leaked by a beta tester which showed a visually enhanced version of Heroes of Newerth.

S2 games have since confirmed that the screens are indeed from HoN 3.0, and even released their own teaser trailer.


Source: Leaked HoN 3.0 images confirmed by S2 Games


-Enabled Kunkka and Bloodseeker.
-Enabled Bot Support
-Fixed some creep aggro behaviors
-Fixed Juggernaut's Omnislash not ministunning the initial target.
-Fixed Juggernaut's Healing Ward not having an AoE cursor.
-Fixed Critical Strikes (both Juggernaut's and item-based) not denying correctly.
-Fixed Ion Shell being dispelled during Bladefury.
-Fixed Razor's Static Link working on Juggernaut while he is omnislashing.
-Fixed Doom gaining a ranged attack by orb walking after eating a ghost creep.
-Fixed Dazzle's Shadow Wave, it now properly deals physical damage, and damages magic immune units.
-Fixed Ancients not regenerating.
-Fixed Lich's Dark Ritual being usable on couriers.
-Fixed players instantly losing vision of dying units.
-Fixed the radius of vision players get from attacking units.
-Fixed units being knocked back into trees potentially getting stuck.
-Fixed Ring of Basilius, it no longer automatically resets its toggle state on death.
-Fixed Illusions doing significantly reduced damage to buildings.
-Fixed a bug that prevented selection hitboxes from scaling along with the unit.
-Fixed a bug where creeps would over-commit to defending an allied hero being attacked.
-Adjusted juke areas around Dire Side Shop.

-Added support for muting voice & text chat of other players via the scoreboard.
-Fixed a bug with item combining when the courier brings items to a hero in fountain range.
-Changed how upgradable items are displayed in the shop: now all upgrade levels are shown in the combine tree.
-Upgradeable items, such as Necronomicon, now show the upgrade level in their shop tooltips.
-Added Legacy key support for Juggernaut.
-Fixed a bug where players who bought items while dead in range of the side or secret shop would have their items drop on the ground.
-Changed secret shop item color to teal.
-Updated player slot colors.
-The player's own minimap icon now shows their player color.
-Fixed a bug that prevented camera movement while spectating a game directly (not via DOTA TV).
-Fixed several issues with Fog of War while spectating.


-Illusions in the portrait and multi-unit selection UI now show the illusion status effect.
-Vengeful Spirit's Magic Missile is more obviously a projectile now.
-Beastmaster's Wild Axes now flow along the ground, and are more prominent overall.
-Completed a rough pass over the Dire Secret Shop.
-Added a new custom effect for Lich's Frost Armor.
-Lich's Chain Frost is now more visible.
-Vengeful Spirit now has a new model and weapon.
-Added bloody footprints to Axe's Cull effect.
-Fixed a bug that caused portraits to sometimes have missing (or extra) body parts on Heroes.


-Added more voice content to several heroes.
-Added Dire Defeat music piece.

Thanks Frenzy for the initial post :)

News / DOTA 2 Beta Key Giveaway - Round 2
« on: October 06, 2011, 09:04:25 AM »
We have been distributing some Dota 2 beta keys to our staff and senior members the last couple of weeks, and now feel it's time we rewarded our casual readers as well. Here's your chance to win a Dota 2 beta key from! We have 4 keys to give away and we'll be giving one key away every 2 days (2 days per round).

How to take part
1) Each round will consist of one topic that we put up related to the improvement of Dota 2. You post your thoughts / ideas / suggestions on the said topic as a reply on the appropriate forum thread.

2) "Like" our Facebook page and share at least 2 updates on the page

3) Follow us on twitter and re-tweet at least 2 of our tweets

4) Await results!

How are winners chosen?
We will be going through all the replies and eliminating non-serious or inadequate entries. Once only serious entries are left, we will be picking the top 20 responses and pick one lucky winner randomly from that lot.

Round 2 Question
What features/mechanics from other games (HoN, LoL, StarCraft 2, Call of Duty, Super Mario or whatever) could be used to improve DOTA 2 and how?

Structure your answer as
How it can be used to make DOTA 2 better:

Note: Please dont use suggestions from DotA because it's implied that all features in DotA will be implemented in the best way possible.


News / DOTA 2 Beta Key Giveaway - Round 1 Winner Announced!
« on: October 05, 2011, 10:31:11 PM »

#11 - bylite
#15 - Fraky
#23 - GuineaPiet
#32 - Apamahalla
#40 - vDevilEnd
#41 - Stfuorelse
#42 - static_sickness
#54 - Linamylove
#56 - qL1max
#59 - discoveryimotbh
#61 - Flip4Life
#67 - DarkSuo
#71 - AwesomeAL
#91 - johnjohn
#95 - cursiv
#98 - Skab
#117 - paradiddlar
#138 - Spomo
#139 - trock
#142 - Twitch

Well done everyone on the brilliant suggestions. Hope Valve takes a look at what everyone was suggesting.


#67 - DarkSuo

Congratulations in winning your DOTA 2 beta key. Please PM me within 24 hours to receive your key. If the key is unclaimed, another winner will be picked at random.

The question for Round 2 of the beta key giveaway will be posted soon. Stay sharp!

Changelogs / DOTA 2 Beta - 9/29 Update. Juggernaut is here!
« on: September 30, 2011, 11:54:16 AM »

-Enabled Juggernaut!
-Fixed various bugs with visual effects being visible through Fog of War
-Fixed being able to buyback while you’re reincanating
-Changed Pudge’s hook to pull back units he kills with it
-Various network optimizations and responsiveness improvements
-Fixed Dark Ritual not being castable on some units
-Fixed Backtrack being able to avoid unique attack effects
-Fixed bugs with Ice Blast and Refresher Orb
-Fixed a potential bug with initial Malifice as the target moves into fog
-Fixed Beastmaster’s bird and beast selection hitboxes
-Fixed heroes being able to get stuck between a building and a rock in the Dire base
-Fixed a recent bug with Weaver’s Swarm vision and attack priority
-Fixed a recent bug that caused Weaver to not breaking invis when attacking
-Fixed fountain vision range
-Fixed Paralyzing Casks bounce delay
-Fixed Assassinate ministun interaction with BKB
-Fixed some hitboxes on Dire trees
-Fixed various crashes

-Hovering over your damage/armor area will show a placeholder tooltip that has information about your movement -speed, attack speed, etc
-Moved buyback cost to the gold tooltip
-New day/night display
-You can now move items inside the inventory / stash while dead
-Added “out of range” cast cursor
-Hero portrait turns grayscale when you die
-Fixed an inventory combine bug where the courier would fail to deliver all items
-Fixed cooldown value in abilities sometimes showing a value larger than the max cooldown length
-Improvements to dashboard chat UI
-The global Dota channel has been removed. You are now joined to a regional based channel based on your geo-location
-Spectators via DOTA TV can now draw and ping on the screen. These won’t be sent to other players and are only there so people casting can use them as tools to point things out
-Map pings the minimap locations of the side and secret shops when a user tries to buy from those shops without being in range
-Fixed being able to disassemble an item and sell the components for their sellback price
-Matchmaking will ask players to ready up once it has found them a game. A sound will be played and the taskbar will -flash if the player is alt-tabbed
-Matchmaking now displays the number of players in your region and skill when searching for a game
-Visual representation of your search range increasing over time
-Team score is always show on the top bar now
-Fixed heroes being deselected for a brief period when they die
-Fixed hitch that happened when holding down middle mouse in directed mode
-Fixed an issue where agility/armor/attack speed wasn’t displayed properly until combat started
-Fixed attempting to join matchmaking with a party if any member is already in a game
-Fixed HTML tags in player names
-Fixed some camera getting stuck bugs while spectating a game
-Various tooltip updates
-Added current Attributes Level to the attributes stats tooltip
-Reduced All Pick hero picker time (you can still pick after this time, but the in-game timer for creep spawn will be -running)
-Fixed an issue where players reconnecting would sometimes not get the other teams tower and hero status on join
-Corrected background sound option from being inverted
-Spectators now get the correct fog of war visible state while joining mid-game

-Show a gold gained particle effect when players sell an item
-Polish pass on Dire side juke paths
-Fixed cast fx/sounds being spammable on nevermore/zeus ultimates
-New placeholder sideshops & secretshops
-Hooked up end-game camera. Still a work in progress

-Day/Night sounds added
-Updated hero select underscore music
-Re-encoded Sven VO to get rid of pops/clicks at end of files
-Added death music
-Added Dire victory music
-BKB sound update
-Soul Ring sound update
-Fixed a bug with voice chatting[/quote]

General / DOTA 2 Steam Achievements
« on: September 25, 2011, 10:54:56 PM »
Here is a complete list of Steam achievements currently available in DOTA 2.

Consume 3 trees using Tangos

First One's Free
Complete your first game of Dota 2

Caught the Bug
Participate in 10 games


Participate in 100 games

I Can Quit Anytime
Participate in 1000 games

Party Time!
Complete a game while in a matchmaking party

You're A Crook Captain Hook
As Pudge land 5 hooks on enemy heroes without missing or dying

Combo Meal
As Pudge kill an enemy hero by hooking, rotting and dismembering them

Just Ten Bites

Win 10 games as Pudge

Breaking the Scale

Win 50 games as Pudge

The Biggest Winner
Win 100 games as Pudge

What's That Smell?
As Pudge kill an enemy with rot at the same time you die from it

Note how the last 6 are Pudge specific. It appears there will be achievements for all heroes.

News / DOTA 2 NDA Lifted! Gameplay Streams are Now Available.
« on: September 23, 2011, 08:49:56 AM »
According to, the NDA preventing beta testers from streaming gameplay videos has been lifted as of 23rd September.

Here are a couple of streams.

Go nuts.

News / The Valve Way: Gabe Newell And Erik Johnson Speak about DOTA 2
« on: August 30, 2011, 11:56:41 AM »
In a recent interview with gaming website, Valve CEO Gabe Newell and Project Leader Erik Johnson had some ideas to share about DOTA 2 and how things work at Valve.

A few snippets regarding DOTA 2.

But in the case of Dota 2, was it more liking DotA, or liking IceFrog?

EJ: Both, absolutely both.

GN: For us, it's like there's some people you meet and you just say, "I wanna work with this person." And IceFrog is that kind of person. There are a lot of people at Valve who don't ever have to work again. The reason we all go to work each day is we get to work with people that we do. The idea that you can go to work each day and see what this person is doing is pretty exciting.

Now, I'm assuming Dota 2 is free-to-play.

GN: So the primary focus for us at this point is not worrying about monetization, and it's instead worrying about getting the game right. So we started with a group of IceFrog's testers that he's worked with for all the different versions, and sort of got it to a point where we'd stopped making them crazy with all of the dumb things that we had done.

And The International [tournament at this month's Gamescom] is sort of the next step of that process. It's like, this is a very tough audience; there are a bunch of clear technology pieces and server pieces we have to get done. And the phase after that is, there's going to be an invitation beta, and then after that there's going to be an open beta.

But our focus is really much on building something that's cool, and then we'll worry about monetization. So we're not going to worry about that until later. Premature monetization is the root of all evil.

Did you recruit a lot for this game?

GN: No -- we don't recruit for games. We recruit people...

EJ: Well, we recruited one.

GN: Well, he recruited us. IceFrog. That's just not -- I mean, anybody who we hire, we don't hire to a specific position or to a specific project. The people at the company don't work on specific projects. Everybody's told, "Your first job is to figure out where you can create the most value." So when people end up working on Dota, it's not because somebody told them to go work on Dota. They go work on Dota 2 because they decided , "That's where I'm going to be the most useful."

EJ: It has this really great side effect, too. Instead of having some person review all the products that are going on at Valve, you can tell how a product's doing based on how willing people are to go and work on it. We know a product's pretty likely to be successful, or fun, or at least fun to work on, if lots of people are going to working on it. It's a good method.


News / First Official DOTA 2 Trailer Released!
« on: August 16, 2011, 08:45:33 AM »
Dota 2 Gamescom Trailer

General / Professional DotA Deam CCM Aquired for $6.2 Million!
« on: August 04, 2011, 11:34:47 AM »
That's like $200,000 per pixel, right?

I note there was a lot of surprise that Valve would offer a $1m prize for their Dota 2 tournament at Gamescom: maybe this goes a little way to explaining why that sum is perhaps not so extraordinary (y’know, other than the fact that Valve live in houses made of platinum).

Chinese DotA 1/StarCraft 2/Warcraft 3 team Catostrophic Cruel Memories, aka CCM, was earlier this week bought out by businessman Sicong Wang, director of Wanda Enterprises, for the sum of 40,000,000 Chinese yuan – that’s about $6.2 million. Whaaaaat.

The five (that’s all) people involved have reformed as a new team, now owned by Wang, called Invictus. CCM was due to play in the Dota 2 tournament; Invictus will now take their place, by dint of being exactly the same people. Got that?

Valve’s tournament cashpot may have seemed absurd, but this rather seems like a vote of confidence in how lucrative an e-sport Dota 2 might prove to be.

That's SERIOUS money!

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