Last night, the (still technically unreleased) Dota 2 beta registered a peak of 297,000 players. This broke the previous record, set by Skyrim, by almost 10,000, making it the most-played game on Steam by concurrent users in history. With the rate they're sending out free keys, this doesn't really surprise me.
This week in eSports: the death knell sounds for IPL6, but an announcement from QuakeCon gives us something different to look forward to. Things have come right down to the wire in The Defense 3 and the GSL, and the next MLG is right around the corner. There may be no better time this year to 6 pool or gank your friends into giving eSports a look. gl hf!
This week in eSports: EVE Online gets its first ongoing, competitive league. The IPL could be changing hands. And only the final four remain in the GSL Code S. Get ready to face-check your weekly helping of competitive gaming news. gl hf!
League of Legends will feature prominently in Major League Gaming's 2013 Winter season. There has never really been any doubt about that. But now we've got info on how the competition will be structured, as well as how it will tie into Riot's own, year-spanning League Championship Series.
This week in eSports: which StarCraft II tournaments are making the switch to Heart of the Swarm, and which will hang onto Wings of Liberty a little longer? We've got the answers. Also, could World of Tanks break into the eSports scene? With an announced $2.5 million prize pool, it might be on the right track.
This week in eSports: League of Legends Season 3 hits the ground running, MLG is already hosting competitive Heart of the Swarm, In Dota 2, only four teams are still standing in the upper bracket of The Defense 3.
Riot kicked off the third season of League of Legends' Championship Series today with a special treat for enthusiast summoners: LoL eSports, a new hub site for streaming upcoming matches for free and keeping tabs on team bios, play-by-plays, and the latest standings.
Free-to-play cash shops can be treacherous terrain. You've got to avoid the money-sink traps on your way to finding the best value items for your playstyle—whether that's content, skins, or features. That's why we've put together this colorful treasure map to help you find the best loot for your buck in League of Legends. We use $50 (7200 RP) as the base investment most players make into their games, but we've also included a budget tier.
The eSports scene has been steadily growing in North America and Europe, but it's not growing fast enough for League of Legends' developer, Riot Games. Last year, they promoted eSports with a multi-million dollar tournament and free HD livestreaming of international matches all year long. How do they plan to top that in 2013? I asked, and Riot was happy to answer.
This week in our new competitive gaming column: could PlanetSide 2 be the first competitive shooter to achieve RTS/MOBA-level worldwide success? MLG and Sony think it just might. Plus: Who will secure their spots in Dota 2's The Defense 3 playoffs? This and much more below. gl hf!
Over the last few months Riot have been cleaning house of the more odious members of the League of Legends' esports scene. Pro players IWillDominate, enVision and Linak have all been squashed beneath Riot's banhammer for "persistent toxic behaviour" while playing the game.
Those bans were for specific accounts, and disqualified each player from league play for a year. Today, Riot have gone further, issuing unprecedented lifetime bans to two members of Team Solo Mebdi. A third member of the team has also received the now standard one year suspension, meaning Solo Mebdi are disqualified from the upcoming LCS EU Qualifiers, due to be held this weekend. Naturally, given the severity of the punishment, the affected players' behaviour was extreme to say the least.
Heya fellow nerd-ballers. Get your hotkeys ready, because you're about to drop into the first edition of What to Watch: The Week in eSports, a new column bringing you the latest news on tournaments, players, personalities, and apocalyptic balance patches for the world's premiere competitive PC games. This week, we highlight the big events to look for in 2013, where to start in building your own game knowledge to gosu levels, and what happens when the worlds of eSports and journalism collide. gl hf.
We love games like Dota 2, League of Legends, and Smite, but the myriad skills needed to master their complex gameplay can scare new players away. That’s why we occasionally pick a key skill and teach you how to master it, using a character that particularly excels at or relies on that skill in-game.
We've activated League of Legends expert and former Senior Editor Josh Augustine to tackle the science (and art) of wards—the consumable items that you drop to illuminate LoL's ever-present fog of war. No one is better at warding the map than the little scout Teemo, who can toss down his own sight-granting mushrooms in addition to ordinary wards.
Riot have announced the details for the third season of the League of Legends Championship Series, and they're looking mighty exciting for fans of eSports. There are plans for regular season play, an All-Star tournament, and an attempt to reign in the many disparate worldwide championships into the main series' action.
Riot Games announced yesterday its implementation of sweeping pricing changes for League of Legends champions, with the overall effect intended to reduce costs on older champions and equalize the ratio between cash-bought Riot Points (RP) and Influence Points (IP) earned per match.
Yesterday, a hacker swiped player passwords and account information from Heroes of Newerth's databases, causing developer S2 Games to issue a notice to change any multi-use passwords potentially associated with a player's account. The hacker, apparently, is just getting started. Spotted by PCGamesN, a Reddit thread seemingly created by the hacker gloated over S2's purported security holes and suggested League of Legends would be his or her next target.
seems seemed Valve, one of the two big competitors in the MOBA genre with its in-house Dota 2, has had struck a distribution deal with rival League of Legends developer Riot. As of last night, Steam's database was updated with entries for the English, Spanish, French, and German versions of the League of Legends client.
Riot have released an enormous patch for League of Legends, making big changes to the game in the lead up to Season 3. The update has been designed to tweak a number of areas: new and adjusted items give more flexibility to late game builds; jungling has been rejigged, with scaling difficulty and less gold from mobs; and masteries have been overhauled to reduce the availability of early game resistance stats. The focus, it appears, is to increase the number of strategic options available to each character. Riot have released a video to outline the important bits of the patch, which I've embedded below.
In an interview with Gamasutra, League of Legends lead producer Travis George acknowledged that trash talking is natural in competitive games, but that some LoL players take it too far, "being mean for the sake of being mean." To address the problem of mean-spirited players, Riot has put together the "Player Behavior and Justice Team" (or, the much cuter "PB&J team"), which includes two doctors, one of cognitive neuroscience and one of behavioral psychology.
As an outsider to the MOBA scene, I'd kind of assumed that harassment and verbal abuse were pretty much the entire point of the genre. Apparently not, as Riot's esports team have made the decision to permanently ban IWillDominate, a pro-gamer signed to Team Dignitas.
The League of Legends Tribunal shared their decision on the game's forums. They point out that, while they do not tolerate any unsportsmanlike behaviour, IWillDominate - real name, Christian Rivera - was particularly notable because of how "severe and consistent" his behaviour was.