Hey! I’m back! Ain’t that exciting? No? Oh… Anyways, it’s been a while since I’ve last posted, and many things have happened since.
WoW addiction happened, for one thing – I’ve played a hell of a lot, up until this month, when I just told myself that I wouldn’t pay the monthly subscription anymore. And I haven’t. So now my gaming repertoire has changed from the single communism-like “political party” list of just WoW to an ever growing number of diverse games, old and new, and some unreleased.
I’ve started playing LoL (League of Legends) pretty casually. Now, I used to play some DotA back in the day (some 2-3 years ago). LoL is a perfect fit for one who has played the map before. Not only that, but in my opinion it’s much more streamlined, more n00b-friendly, nicer to look at, and pretty much generally more fun. Also it’s a bit more logical.
You see, in DotA, you control an avatar that levels up as he kills enemy AI units that come from opposite bases to continually make battle in the middle of the map. That power struggle would pretty much go forever if not for the power of your avatar, that is used to tip the balance and push the struggle point to the enemy base in order to destroy their source of power (the Frozen Throne for the scourge and the Great Tree for the sentinels).
In the way of your avatar are enemy avatars, controlled by players just like you. That, and you also have human allies. Another highlight of DotA is the fact that in order to further empower your hero, you buy and combine items into more powerful items. In order to get money, aside from a constant trickle of gold ever few seconds, you need to kill enemy units and heroes.
Here’s where denying comes in. Because the only shot that counts in your getting money is the killing blow, you can attack and deal the killing blow to your own units before the enemy hero does. The process is called denying. Despite the fact that it makes the game a bit less passive while you’re holding your lane (there are 3 in DotA), it’s also pretty illogical and not used later on when your hero is incredibly powerful. I mean – killing your own people? Seriously? I know it’s just a game, but shooting people in the back to deny money to the enemy is just wrong if you ask me.
League of Legends does away with that, and adds more to the mix by making the minimap be more informative, streamlining the interface greatly, showing what items you ought to get, showing health bars in regard to the quantity of health that the enemy has (it’s easy to see when a guy has twice as large a health pool as yours), with easily distinguishable heroes and units, and, second best of all, a progressive meta game.
In LoL you don’t control an avatar directly – you are a Summoner, and in turn, the summoner controls the hero on the plane of battle. While the hero keeps his levels to the game you are currently into and loses all progress when getting into another battle, the summoner gains levels that persist through all games. The benefits that the summoner provides are slim in the plane of battle – these range between small buffs that you buy for ingame currency (that you win by playing) and spells that you gain while leveling. You get to choose two spells that you take with you to battle to come to the aid of your avatar, ranging from a high cooldown area of effect healing spell, a smite spell that only hits enemy creeps for a high amount of damage, slowing the enemy down slightly for a few seconds, and so on. These spells can turn the tide of a battle, but aren’t game-changing, and every summoner brings his own pair of spells to the table.
There’s a slew of completely different heroes to choose from, each with his own strengths and weaknesses and abilities that benefit him or the whole team. While you don’t have a huge selection at first, you can buy the rights to play with more heroes by paying with real money or ingame currency. Which leads me to the best thing about League of Legends:
IT’S COMPLETELY FREE.
It has already won the best free game once, but it takes the gold from me as well. Other things that are admirable in the game is the fact that leavers are few and far in-between, especially at higher levels (you are automatically paired with equal skill summoners), a quick and efficient matchmaking system, and an extremely calm and considerate community. Last I played DotA I was pretty much run down with so many swear words that I could build a house with the letters. And I still won. No such thing in LoL – mostly people keep to themselves there or provide some constructive criticism. It’s a bit odd how little trash talk there is in the chat boxes there.
So what are you waiting for? Register and pwn some n00bs!