Do many people really call DOTA a "MOBA" game?

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Posted by Slag (8157 posts) -

I was looking for the DOTA page on the gb wiki couldn't find it and instead found this 

Multi Online Battle Arena page
 
when and where did this term come from? I have never heard it before (obviously) despite playing Warcraft III Dota for about 4-5 years. Seems like  a goofy name.  Wikipedia seems to suggest Riot games came up with term when they launched League of Legends but that doesn't mean we should just call it whatever they say we should call it. Blizzard and Valve certainly don't seem to be embracing the term. And I haven't seen it associated with Heroes of Newerth. And for the record Wikipedia doesn't either. That to me at least suggests that term is not popularly embraced (at least yet). So why should GB call it something different than perhaps most of its' players do?
 
I can guess why Riot game would prefer the term MObA, cause I'm sure Valve or Blizzard (probably valve) has trademarked the term DOTA (and thus Riot can't use the term w/o copyright infringement issues and also probably wouldn't anyway as they wouldn't want to give free advertising to their competitors anyway). But I'm not really sure why that matters in the long run, i.e. do many game retail packages proclaim what genre it is on the box that you are holding?  Or in their tv or magazine ad spots?
 
Do Mario games call themselves platformers, or James Bond games proclaim that they are first persons hooters? I've never noticed any ads for them to that effect.
 
What's the harm in calling this first wave DOTA clone games, DOTA games or DOTAlike games (ala roguelike) ? What am I missing here?
 
I think most gamers are more likely to know what "DOTAlike" means than MOBA.
 
I realize games usually  have acronym template names for  genres (SHMUPS, FPS, RTS, MMORPG, JPRG, etc all come to mind) but I dunno MOBA seems kinda silly to me. I think the birth of a new genre deserves better, Just my 2  cents

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#1 Posted by Slag (8157 posts) -

I was looking for the DOTA page on the gb wiki couldn't find it and instead found this 

Multi Online Battle Arena page
 
when and where did this term come from? I have never heard it before (obviously) despite playing Warcraft III Dota for about 4-5 years. Seems like  a goofy name.  Wikipedia seems to suggest Riot games came up with term when they launched League of Legends but that doesn't mean we should just call it whatever they say we should call it. Blizzard and Valve certainly don't seem to be embracing the term. And I haven't seen it associated with Heroes of Newerth. And for the record Wikipedia doesn't either. That to me at least suggests that term is not popularly embraced (at least yet). So why should GB call it something different than perhaps most of its' players do?
 
I can guess why Riot game would prefer the term MObA, cause I'm sure Valve or Blizzard (probably valve) has trademarked the term DOTA (and thus Riot can't use the term w/o copyright infringement issues and also probably wouldn't anyway as they wouldn't want to give free advertising to their competitors anyway). But I'm not really sure why that matters in the long run, i.e. do many game retail packages proclaim what genre it is on the box that you are holding?  Or in their tv or magazine ad spots?
 
Do Mario games call themselves platformers, or James Bond games proclaim that they are first persons hooters? I've never noticed any ads for them to that effect.
 
What's the harm in calling this first wave DOTA clone games, DOTA games or DOTAlike games (ala roguelike) ? What am I missing here?
 
I think most gamers are more likely to know what "DOTAlike" means than MOBA.
 
I realize games usually  have acronym template names for  genres (SHMUPS, FPS, RTS, MMORPG, JPRG, etc all come to mind) but I dunno MOBA seems kinda silly to me. I think the birth of a new genre deserves better, Just my 2  cents

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#2 Posted by bybeach (6350 posts) -

It is an attempt at a term to describe what you call a new genre. . I have nothing against that, or 'DOTA-like' as you propose. The term could become mainstream accepted or disappear tomorrow. I probably would not notice. That's pretty much what happens either way when consensus or mass adoption occurs or not, with or without a logic sometimes even. I mean after all, Defense of the Ancients really doesn't mean much in itself...

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#3 Posted by Slag (8157 posts) -
@bybeach said:

It is an attempt at a term to describe what you call a new genre. . I have nothing against that, or 'DOTA-like' as you propose. The term could become mainstream accepted or disappear tomorrow. I probably would not notice. That's pretty much what happens either way when consensus or mass adoption occurs or not, with or without a logic sometimes even.

No doubt there doesn't seem to be too much rhyme or reason why one name gets popular and another doesn't. Who Knows maybe MOBA will catch on, or maybe it will go back to be called DoTA/dota  or maybe something else entirely. 
 
I guess I just found it a little strange GB seems to implicitly back the one that seems to be dramatically less popular term.  but whatever now I'm just really curious as to why!

@bybeach said:

I mean after all, Defense of the Ancients really doesn't mean much in itself...

Well it kind of does, the Ancients are the Goal you are trying to defend/destroy. but I suppose you are right in that other MOBA games may not have Ancients per say. they definitely are about defense of your base though.
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#4 Posted by ajamafalous (13816 posts) -

They were known as DotA-clones, until Riot coined "MOBA." For some reason mainstream seems to be embracing that more, probably because League is vastly more popular than any other game in the genre (probably barring DotA).

Online
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#5 Posted by VanillaPlant (156 posts) -

No, I still call them AOSs, but that doesn't mean anything unless you have been playing sc and wc3 ums games for a long time. MOBA sounds dumb, but its what has stuck I guess.

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#6 Edited by LordXavierBritish (6651 posts) -

Because Defense of the Ancients confers absoluitely zero meaning about what that game is.
 
If you tell a new player that a game is DotA-like they aren't going to understand what that means or why they should care, Multiplayer Online Battle Arena at least gives someone a basic idea of what that game is about.

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#7 Edited by Slag (8157 posts) -
@ajamafalous said:

They were known as DotA-clones, until Riot coined "MOBA." For some reason mainstream seems to be embracing that more, probably because League is vastly more popular than any other game in the genre (probably barring DotA).

I knew LOL had gotten huge but I guess I wasn't aware that it had gotten that huge or that MOBA had caught on so well . Is it a MLG thing?
 
@VanillaPlant said:

No, I still call them AOSs, but that doesn't mean anything unless you have been playing sc and wc3 ums games for a long time. MOBA sounds dumb, but its what has stuck I guess.

AOSs=?      as in Aeon of Strife?. Didn't realize people ever called it that. I knew the sc map was involved back in the day but thought the DoTA  name was around since the start. Hunh that's cool to know.
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#8 Posted by ShaunK (1660 posts) -

MOBA makes sense. Gives a meaning to what the game type is.

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#9 Edited by jakob187 (22947 posts) -

The term MOBA came from Riot Games, the creators of League of Legends. The reason for the terminology is because many of the games that have taken elements of what DOTA is - a top down RTS set in an arena where you play as an individual character with abilities mixed with tower defense elements - has become more than what DOTA does. Look at something like Bloodline Champions. It has no tower defense. It's 3v3 in an arena battle to the death. What would you classify it as otherwise? It's not anything like DOTA at all beyond the top-down view and using individual champions with abilities. There is no tower defense, lane pushing, creep score, etc.

Personally, everyone I know uses the term "MOBA" when referring to this genre of games, namely because DOTA becomes a bit confusing I think. There's DOTA the Mod, DOTA 2, Blizzard DOTA...but when it comes down to it, there's only one true Defense of the Ancients. In turn, why aren't they calling it Blizzard MOBA? The main reason is because there is this elitest divide: those playing DOTA and HoN think "MOBA" is some kind of casual bullshit term. It's not. It's exactly what the games are: multiplayer battle arena games.

I think it's time that we all started moving away from calling this genre "DOTA games" and instead start using "MOBA games" since it is a far more accurate descriptor.

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#10 Edited by Slag (8157 posts) -

thanks for the insight guys. I've spent most of the past year away from the scene and it's amazing how much it's changed
I'll probably always call it DoTa , but I do like MOBA better than ARTS
 
looks like I'm not alone in still calling it DoTA saw this poll/discussion over on team liquid's site when looking into what y'all said.
http://www.teamliquid.net/forum/viewmessage.php?topic_id=261996 
 
seems to be a hotly contested topic in general

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#11 Posted by Slag (8157 posts) -
@jakob187 said:

The term MOBA came from Riot Games, the creators of League of Legends. The reason for the terminology is because many of the games that have taken elements of what DOTA is - a top down RTS set in an arena where you play as an individual character with abilities mixed with tower defense elements - has become more than what DOTA does. Look at something like Bloodline Champions. It has no tower defense. It's 3v3 in an arena battle to the death. What would you classify it as otherwise? It's not anything like DOTA at all beyond the top-down view and using individual champions with abilities. There is no tower defense, lane pushing, creep score, etc.

Personally, everyone I know uses the term "MOBA" when referring to this genre of games, namely because DOTA becomes a bit confusing I think. There's DOTA the Mod, DOTA 2, Blizzard DOTA...but when it comes down to it, there's only one true Defense of the Ancients. In turn, why aren't they calling it Blizzard MOBA? The main reason is because there is this elitest divide: those playing DOTA and HoN think "MOBA" is some kind of casual bullshit term. It's not. It's exactly what the games are: multiplayer battle arena games.

I think it's time that we all started moving away from calling this genre "DOTA games" and instead start using "MOBA games" since it is a far more accurate descriptor.

I see what you are saying and you make a good case for MOBA.  I see on the GB page Monday Night Combat is considered a MOBA game, which is something I never thought would be  considered one. So perhaps a more general term does make more sense.
 
that being said I really doubt Blizzard is just going to concede the DoTA name to Valve and accept Riot's term for the genre without a fight. Plus I do thin they are correct in assuming more people (at least right now) commonly know what a DoTA game is vs a MOBA game.
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#12 Posted by jakob187 (22947 posts) -

@Slag: Yeah, the introduction of stuff like Bloodline Champions and Monday Night Combat is what really helped give MOBA a much stronger definition, as they held all the trappings of what you would find in a DotA-styled game but didn't follow the standard formulas. Smite is another game that looks to break the mold a bit more, which I'm pretty damn excited about.

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#13 Posted by Jokers_Wild (248 posts) -

MOBA is not a good descriptor. Quake is a game where multiple players battle in an online arena, yet we don't call that a MOBA. Personally, Valve's term ARTS seems the best so far, as these games came from the RTS genre but focused more on action rather than strategy, much like from RPG to action RPG.

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#14 Posted by Slag (8157 posts) -
@Jokers_Wild:  

I dunno man DoTA seems almost more like an overhead stage from Contra than it does an RTS. They may have come from RTS mods but man  there is virtually no "strategy" element to the gameplay imo.
 
I don't care much  for MOBA either, but it does seem marginally better to me than ARTS. 

but then again I was and am still prefer calling it DoTA. :)
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#15 Posted by Hailinel (25785 posts) -

As with any new genre, games cease being "-like" or "clones" when enough development has occurred to create a genre. The same thing happened with FPS games (Doom clones) and open world action games (GTA clones).

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#16 Posted by amomjc (978 posts) -

People who call it a "DoTA" are saying it incorrectly whether people want to agree with them or not. "DoTA" is a MOBA much like Halo is an FPS. We do not run around calling every FPS on the planet a Halo so why on earth would we do that for any other game? I am not going to sit here and say MOBA is the best term to be used, seeing as many games before it can be moved into this cateogory, but DoTA definitely doesn't fit the part any better. Valve playing around with ARTS seemed better, but in the end, a better category needs to form.

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#17 Edited by nintendoeats (6222 posts) -

There is a very popular website called moba-fire, so I don't see the term going away. people were also calling them "Hero Action Games" for a while.

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#18 Posted by Slag (8157 posts) -
@amomjc:  I'm not sure there is a strict wrong or right. People used to call fax machines "Xeroxes" all the time. For awhile a lot of  people called every MP3 player "iPod".  And I think people still call these games DoTA games, and I don't think they are wrong for doing so. To me names like this are whatever the public decides it to be, no matter ho w silly it may be.
 
I'm not opposed to a  better name emerging,  I just thought MOBA wasn't popularly accepted enough yet to warrant ownership of the term. Maybe I've just been away from The DoTA scene for too long and it really has. But I'm not convinced the term is that widespread looking around teh interwebs.

@nintendoeats: Hero Action game or HAG.... really? man maybe MOBA isn't so bad!
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#19 Posted by Slag (8157 posts) -

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