MOBAs are multiplayer online battle arenas, PvP-centric, non-persistent online games that share some but not all mechanics in common with traditional MMORPGs. We formerly categorized MOBAs as “Not So Massively” games. You may also be interested in our Multiplayer category for other multiplayer online games that aren’t fully massive. [Follow the MOBA category’s RSS feed]
We’re all used to the idea of universities and colleges offering sports scholarships, but did you know that several already offer e-sports scholarships? Columbia College
in Missouri, Robert Morris University
in Illinois, The University of Pikeville
in Kentucky, Maryville University in Missouri, and Southwestern College
in Kansas all offer grants or scholarships for e-sports, and the list is growing rapidly.
The University of California, Irvine has now joined the club with the announcement that it will soon begin offering a four-year League of Legends scholarship later this year for 10 students. The scholarship comes as part of a larger deal with Riot Games, who will also be opening a gaming cafe on campus in an effort to replicate the success of similar establishments in South Korea.
In a statement given to Polygon today, UC Irvine’s newly appointed e-sports director Mark Deppe revealed that 72% of the university’s students identify as gamers. “If we are the number one school for gamers, we’re going to be attracting a lot of people,” Deppe explained. “We want to be a first-choice school, and I think if we’re the best gaming and esports school out there, then we can attract a lot of fantastic students.”
A lot of big stuff has been talked up as new additions to Heroes of the Storm, and with today’s patch those features are coming home to roost. Want to enjoy single-lane battling with the Lost Cavern map? That’s in there. Want to ban heroes as part of a tournament? Yep, right in there. Need to play with Dehaka? Also added to the game. But even if you’ve heard about all of that and have already gotten bored with it, there are a whole lot of changes made to various heroes within the game that should grab your attention.
Several heroes, such as Illidan and Tychus, have undergone extensive reworking and had many talents moved, changed, or outright replaced. Other heroes have had major changes made to alter core weaknesses or strengths. Jaina and Kael’thas have had some of their mobility options removed and both Zagara and The Butcher have had their talents and core abilities slightly tweaked. The end result should be a better experience for everyone, and if you’re excited by the changes and want to get in on a one-lane team fight… well, so much the better.
Every few months, my husband will be reading over my shoulder while I’m writing up news about a MOBA for Massively OP, and he’ll get curious about the state of that genre and whether he should jump into it. He does a lot of battleground- and arena-style PvP in MMORPGs above all else, but he’s also put in plenty of time with the Tribes franchise and frenzied real-time strategy titles like Warcraft III. Not being much of a MOBA player myself — and knowing he’s not a huge fan of isometric clickers either — I never quite know which one to push at him.
Would you send him to League of Legends, figuring the biggest is the safest? To Dota 2, with the idea that it’s a bit less simple? SMITE for the point-of-view of the heroes? Heroes of the Storm because of Blizzard’s ubiquity? What’s the best MOBA for an MMORPG player specifically?
Harvard University’s motto, “Veritas,” feels more apt than usual this month as the truth came out about some of the school’s students and their attempt to cheat in a Heroes of the Storm tournament.
Blizzard ruled that teams from Harvard and Michigan engaged in sharing account access with non-registered players as part of the ongoing Heroes of the Dorm tournament. The studio not only yanked the teams from the tourney but is considering taking account action against those involved as well. Considering that this touches upon a competition for part of a $500,000 prize pool, it’s definitely serious business for all parties.
“We have found that players from Team Ambush have violated several tournament rules,” Blizzard posted. “An investigation by Tespa and Blizzard Entertainment revealed that a player on Team Ambush was sharing his Battle.net account with a higher-rated player who was not on his team’s roster during official tournament matches. As a result, Team Ambush has been disqualified from Heroes of the Dorm […] Team Hot Boys from Michigan was disqualified in the Round of 64 for a similar issue, and the players involved will face similar disciplinary action.”
Three high-profile freelance League of Legends e-sports casters are effectively boycotting the Mid-Season Invitational, claiming Riot Games “failed to arrive at an industry standard rate” for their services in Shanghai. MonteCristo, DoA, and PapaSmithy allege that Riot offered them only 40%-70% of the “rate received by talent for major events” for other major e-sports titles, including Dota 2 and Hearthstone, and would not meet what the trio considered the industry standard, leading them to refuse to cast for the MSI.
“[B]y agreeing to a significantly lower wage we fear that we may contribute to the regression of standards for freelance casters in the industry as a whole,” the group said in its statement apologizing to fans for their decision not to participate.
In other League of Legends news, Riot has formally released Aurelion Sol, a gorgeous and spooky celestial-themed mid-range AOE mage hero, and MMO Culture reports that Tencent has released the official theme song for the Chinese version of the game, featuring Taiwanese pop star Jay Chou. The videos for both are below.
Superdata has released a summary of its research on the worldwide digital games market for February 2016, claiming that the digital games market sales have increased by 10% year-over-year. League of Legends, Crossfire, Dungeon Fighter Online, World of Tanks, and Dota 2 lead the pack for “F2P MMO Games” by revenue, while the top-grossing sub MMOs by revenue are World of Warcraft, Lineage, TERA, Star Wars: The Old Republic, and Blade & Soul. Yes, we are likewise puzzled over the classifications.
The firm predicts more sales of western companies to China, headlined by the impending sale of British-owned Jagex to a mining company overseas:
The Heroes of the Storm Spring Championship is coming up very soon, but there’s no reason to spend a whole lot of time thinking about that, even if you’re a big e-sports fan. Why not? Because the 2016 Summer Season is fast approaching, so why not start getting into that set of competitive action now before the last season wraps up? Or at least getting hyped up for it?
A grand total of 10 events will host the regional tournaments building up to the championship at DreamHack Summer in Sweden, with each individual tournament offering significant prize money to the competitors. The final Summer tournament will run from June 18th-21st with a $500,000 pot up for grabs. If you can’t get enough of watching the action, mark the dates on your calendar. (If you’re in the tournaments and didn’t already have some inkling about this… well, you should probably practice a bit.)
When is this year’s BlizzCon? We don’t know. It hasn’t even been officially announced yet. But the eagle-eyed folks over at MMO Champion spotted a brief revision to the official BlizzCon page claiming that this year would mark the 10th year of the convention and that it would be held on November 4th and 5th.
Is that a given? No, at this point nothing is a given. That timeframe marks it as post-launch for both of the company’s two big releases slated for this year (Overwatch and World of Warcraft: Legion), so it’s definitely plausible, but nothing is yet set in stone. Watch this space.
has big plans for its birthday week
and PS4 open beta
, including game-wide promos every single day through Monday. Massively OP is joining in the festivities with our second of two giveaways, this one doling out 50 2016 Season Tickets
, which’ll allow the user to earn fantasy points and unlock seasonal rewards as well as bet on pro league matches.
The tickets can be redeemed in-game across all platforms and in all regions as long as you’re playing on Hi-Rez SMITE servers (Tencent runs the Chinese servers, and LevelUp runs the Latin American and Brazilian servers, so the codes won’t work there). Just head to the store in-game and then click “redeem codes” from the main menu.
Read on to enter to win!
Draft lobbies will soon be treated to a major overhaul in Heroes of the Storm, as Blizzard announced yesterday that it will be revamping the interface and functions in an upcoming patch. These changes include thematic looks, faster hero selection, an increase in the minimum roster requirement, and the ability for teams to ban heroes from matches. Hero bans will come to custom games as well.
“Ranked play will use the ‘mid ban’ method, which works in much the same way that bans do in official Heroes of the Storm tournaments,” Blizzard explained. “This method features two bans per team during each ranked draft: One round of bans before hero picks begin, and a second after three hero pick rounds have elapsed.”
There’s also a new patch on the test realm for the next week. Players can explore it to experience the Lost Cavern battleground and the Dehaka hero.
Last week, Hi-Rez MOBA SMITE
patched in Skadi, the goddess of winter
, and kicked off the 2016 SMITE Pro League Season Ticket
. Oh yeah, and the game is celebrating its second birthday
We’ve got two SMITE giveaways today to help you join in on the carousing. Here comes the first one! Hi-Rez has granted Massively OP a total of 6000 keys that will unlock Bellona and her alternate Battle Maiden skin — a bundle normally worth 300 gems.
Click the Mo button below (and prove you’re not a robot) to take home one of these keys!
Another Warhammer game bites the dust today, and it’s a MOBA.
Whitebox Interactive CEO Jonathan Falkowski told players it will be sunsetting Warhammer 40: Dark Nexus Arena at the end of the month without its ever having emerged from beta.
“We have some unfortunate news to announce, we have decided to stop development of Dark Nexus Arena. We would like to thank our valued customers very much for their patronage and support. You guys have been great. We would like to send out a special thanks to Unrelenting Troll, BForster, Jenbu, GeekByte UK, Solomance, GingerJesus and everyone else for all of their support and help. We would also like to thank Games Workshop for their support and trust in a small company to allow us to work on this amazing project. This means a lot to us. We were really hopeful to provide Warhammer 40,000 and MOBA fans a game that would encompass both aspects but unfortunately we missed the mark. We were in Beta for a year and have taken a lot of valuable feedback from our players. There has been excitement for the game but we haven’t grown enough to maintain development.”
Falkowski says servers will remain up until March 31, 2016.
The MMO industry moves along at the speed of information, and often we’re deluged with so much news here at Massively Overpowered that some of it gets backlogged. That’s why there’s The MOP Up: a weekly compilation of smaller MMO stories and videos that you won’t want to miss. Seen any good MMO news? Hit us up through our tips line!
This week, TERA surprised and disturbed all of us by announcing the sale of “mood clouds” that demonstrate the next level of emotes by placing a rainbow-vomiting cloud above your head. Just in case you weren’t being subtle enough with your emotions.
Read on for more bits of gaming news we didn’t want to leave behind!