I didn’t have to look tot deep to see how much the MOBA fever has been through these last months. As said last year, a lot of games under the this bubble category — because, its gonna explode sooner or later — were launched onto the Internet sea and retails trying to capitalize on something, while big elephants roam the jungle riding along a lot of people.
Let’s see how the juggernauts are performing. Yeah, they are really juggernauts.
All spells maxed out
The game is still big in revenue but the big player base is declining very slowly. Also, internal problems has arisen; It seems that Riot has begun to put more is nose on the competitive side of the game, and Tryndamere’s attitude has not been helping to calm the waters. Yes, straight from the CEO.
LoL is still one of the favorites for its easy-approach for people, but in the pro scene thing aren’t going perfectly. Apart from that, the new client is still on Closed Alpha. If they fix those two things, finances will correct themselves for organizations and pros.
I suppose that if Riot doesn’t feel any finance problems, they won’t bother on part of the player base leaving the ecosystem — probably they’re are the part of the pie who are not spending, so it’s good even if the New Client releases next year.
And stabilizing a lot. It’s difficult to make a game with so many heroes and keep it balanced, but the latest patches over the last year made the game very interesting and flexible, probably the best since 2013. Aside from a new rule to stabilize professional teams and stop last-moment-player-drops, Dota 2 just came from a USD $20 Million tournament. Probably the best eSport Tournament of the decade so far.
That doesn’t change that is still unforgiving for new players, so if Valve can make the game more approachable for new players soon, it may chew more people defecting from other games. Maybe the next Fall Update shackles the scene a bit more.
We have to give credit to the Gearbox team for making a interesting MOBA, but whoever though that launching it just days close to a new Blizzard IP (since 2000) of the same genre, and one hyped since last year, should have cleaned his desk not long ago.
While in execution Battleborn its good, Overwatch did exceptionally. Plus, they securely killed the competition building interest with a lot of marketing and well-done videos presenting their characters, constantly until launch.
For Battleborn, is still laning phase, so there is time to fix how the can approach to the market and survive. If 2K Games can do something to fix this awful launch, is to go F2P before the fiscal year ends so they can chew some more players and monetize from other places rather than living in the bargain bin and hoping for the best. Literally.
Heroes of the Storm
Late game item already
Blizzard’s second big IP it seems that is struggling with growing more than it is. I feel that Blizzard it’s not happy with this, and in the next BlizzCon (4–5 November) they may plan a Big Tournament to show how Heroes of the Storm is relevant.
They’re miles behind games like LoL or Dota 2 but, if they can spark the pro-scene using BlizzCon and push the media interest, they can make Heroes of the Storm full circle. We all know there is potential, but seizing it is another story.
It’s High Noon
Technically not a MOBA per-sé, but Blizzard’s new IP banged out the Internet with very high appraisal from critics and that translated directly in good initial sales. While its basically “Team Fortress 2 with waifus” as Twitch Chat says, a 10 Million player base should be enough for Blizzard and shareholders to seize potential on the franchise.
Overwatch started strong and the mid game is just starting. Interest is shrinking compared to launch date, as any artificially hyped game should be, and the professional scene is still on diapers. They need to keep pushing different aspects of the game to keep it relevant before people realize that TF2 is free.
Pulling the aggro
Epic Games is going full throttle on this — ask Angry Joe how it is going. While the game feels like a graphically-realistic League of Legends in Third Person, its crafting and experience is enough to convince some players that this game may be the next big thing on eSports.
Apart, being on PlayStation 4 its a HUGE DEAL for Epic games and Sony. If they nail cross-play between PS4 and PC, they may become the next big thing.
I personally want Epic to have a really better & nice way to welcome newcomers with the card system, the characters roles, and how the game progresses, something that lacks of right now and may punish them when they launch. There is potential here, so I safely think that Paragon can become a MOBA juggernaut with enough time.
…To be continued on Part 2: The small fishes