What is Dota 2? Here is a Quick Look at This Wildly Popular Multiplayer Online Battle Arena eSports Game

What is Dota 2? Here is a Quick Look at This Wildly Popular Multiplayer Online Battle Arena eSports Game

It can be said that Dota 2 is one of the most popular video games there is today. While it doesn’t have as many players as other online games, it’s still well-known even outside gamer circles since it has a large eSports scene. Even after nearly a decade after its release, Dota 2 is still played by more than a million people worldwide.

What is Dota 2?

Dota 2 is a MOBA or a multiplayer online battle arena video eSports game by Valve. As its name suggests, it’s a sequel to DotA (Defense of the Ancients) which is a mod for the game Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos and its expansion pack, The Frozen Throne. In other terms, it’s a spin-off of a community-created mod for a very popular game which can explain the popularity. With such a following, it’s not surprising that it eventually took on its own form.

Players are grouped into teams of five and are pitted against another team to defend their own base while trying to occupy their opponents’. A player gets to control their own character which is referred to as a “Hero” with a specific set of talents and abilities as well as playing style.

The idea behind the game seems straightforward and simple on paper but in reality, it’s quite complex and has a steep learning curve. This is where most of its criticisms and praises stem from as some don’t like that getting the hang of it is hard but others praise it as one of the greatest video games ever for the same reason.

Gameplay Basics

Dota 2 matches are played by 2 teams of 5 who will compete to destroy each other’s ‘Ancient’. An Ancient is pretty much the main base of a team and is distinguished by being the largest structure in a team’s base.


Each player is represented by a ‘hero’ of their choice. They can choose from 119 playable characters, all of which are different traits, strengths, and weaknesses. Everyone chooses a hero during the pre-drafting phase at the start of the game and what’s chosen by one team member can’t be selected by another as well. This ensures that teams are composed of various heroes with different abilities.

All starter heroes are at level one upon selection. They have low-level abilities so players need to strengthen them by accumulating experience points through different kinds of gameplay. Leveling up will make new abilities available and power up your character. Levels max out at level 30.

What is Dota 2? Here is a Quick Look at This Wildly Popular Multiplayer Online Battle Arena eSports Game
Image by dota2freaks.com

Gaining Experience

To make your hero more powerful, you need to level up. To do that, you need to increase your experience points. There are a few ways to do this including killing enemy heroes, being within the range of the enemy kill, and killing the enemy and neutral creeps.

Game Modes

There are several game modes that you can try when playing Dota 2. They primarily alter the process of hero selection or the type of battle you can engage in. Here are the main modes available:

  • All Pick
  • Ranked All Pick
  • Turbo Mode
  • Single Draft
  • Random Draft
  • All Random
  • Captains Mode
  • Captains Draft
  • Limited Heroes
  • Least Played
  • 1v1 Solo Mid
  • Ability Draft
  • All Random Deathmatch
  • Private Lobbies
  • Event Game Modes
  • Custom Modes

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