over 180,000 players
playing Dota 2 simultaneously on the daily, at least a few of the dedicated will know how to push around a digi-brush. The
Dota 2 Polycount Contest
collected nearly 75 high-quality entries of custom-designed armors to submit to Valve's judgement with the winners having their works included in the in-game store for purchase. On Dota 2's
, Valve revealed the first six lucky winners today and touted gorgeous new player-made duds for Crystal Maiden, Naga Siren, Beastmaster, Templar Assassin, Meepo, and Witch Doctor heroes.
Valve determines each contest entry by readability, design, detail, and character profile, offering thoughts and critiques on each winner through the blog. Though artistic flair always shows off a designer's prowess, Valve warned of the importance of exact attention to detail in color gradients and saturation for texture modeling, an especially critical element considering the model scale and viewpoint of most MOBAs. Still, that Beastmaster set is my favorite pick of the lot. Wow.
Valve will announce four additional winners tomorrow and a final grand winner on Friday. Keep checking Dota 2's blog for the latest announcements. Cyborgmatt's blog also contains images and snapshots of all the contest's entrants for browsing.