Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Dota, who does it belong to?

Well if you're a Dota fan, and have not been living under a rock. Then listen in, if you don't like Dota, then listen in about the IP, struggle, and blah blah blah.

So we start with the fact that around a year or so ago the man known simply as IceFrog - maker, and custodian of Dota- started working at valve. From this we guessed that valve was going to make some kind of Dota spin off. But they are making Dota.

Now business is a cut-throat world, you can get sued for patent infringement by making a slide icon on screen to unlock a touch phone. So Valve in their attempt to make Dota applied for a trademark.

Now we have the stink to the issue. Riot games counter filed for the trademark Defense of the ancients, and Blizzard are also trying to make their own Dota. So who is in the right and who is in the wrong.

Firstly my personal note. I grew up playing Diablo, and StarCraft. At one point I would consider myself the biggest Blizz fanboi there was. I almost cried when HellGate was announced - and was a lot closer to crying after playing. - I'm a really avid Dota player having spent entire weekends LANing and playing it with friends.

So back to who should get to call the game Dota. Dota was originally made by a pseudonym user called "Euls", this was in WC3 RoC, he was inspired by the SC map Aions of Strife. The map was then remade in WC3 FT by Steve "Guinsoo" Freak, who is one of the higher ups at Riot Games who make LoL. Now Valve hired IceFrog who has been the long standing Dota maker.

Now in short I believe Valve is in the right. Blizzard, and Riot Games both stand to lose due to Valve making Dota, LoL claims to be the successor to Dota, but it's rather hard to succeed a king while he is still lively and on his throne. Blizzard stands to lose since people would go and buy WC3 to play Dota.

Valve is doing what they have always done, saw a mod and went and made it into it's own game, look at Team Fortress Classic, TF2, Counter Strike. And the taking a game made in another engine isn't new since Team Fortress was originally a Quake mod. The team that made it hired by Valve. Sounds very familiar.

Now as far as design and so on goes. I'm very sure there will be tons of additional things to dota, I mead TF2 has received more content then some, or quite a few, subscription MMOs.

And I'm sure the Dota community will still be able to contribute to the game. And at heart it will always be their game, and if someone had to own the IP I'm glad it's Valve they have yet to give me a reason to doubt their actions. Blizzard has been Koticked :(

On a side note I saw that Blizz was making a map for SC2 called left to die. And I was totally making a text based zombie horror survival game called that . . .