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Dota 2 First Blood update adds local network play and new mode, goes live September 23

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Dota 2's First Blood update looks set to bring local play, a new game mode, and a better backpack to the ultra-popular free-to-play game. The patch drops September 23 (opens in new tab) and also includes a host of smaller tweaks and changes to Dota 2's interface, economy, and community features.

First Blood will allow lobbies to be formed over local networks either at home or a cafe, according to Valve's summary of the update. A new game mode called Captain's Draft adds another layer of intrigue to the team selection process. Teams will take turns whittling down a random list of 24 heroes in order to fashion their rosters before matches begin. Additionally, improved item filtering and sorting changes to the game's backpack system is what Dota 2 is now billing as a player "armory." The filters should allow for better organization of items by "type, quality, and rarity," according to Valve.

Dota 2, which officially launched in July after a long beta, will also see some less visible changes under hood. The quality of items players will see dropped in-game will be tied to their Dota profile level once First Blood releases. In a change to how the game attempts to deal with cheaters, Valve reports that "beginning soon, users will be suspended from Dota 2 for 30 days when external tools attached to Dota 2 are detected by the Valve Anti-Cheat system."

New to Dota 2? Check out our handy introduction to all things MOBA.