DOTA, HON, LOL, Demigod… AoS, DOTA-ish, MOBA, wat?: A konseptual jenre analysis

Jenres – a kind of set, but wich kind?

Jenres ar fuzy sets of items. They jenres show sentrality, i.e., ther ar members that ar good examples of a given jenre, and members that ar not good examples of the jenre but stil belong to it. Jenres ar eether or sets, i.e., if the kategory is aplikable, then eether a given item is in a jenre or it is not; ther is no membership of degree. Kategorys is a very interesting subjekt, i think, see Women, Fire, Dangerous Things, part 1 for mor about that.

The games – a short history and overview

Ther is a relativly new kind of game of wich ther seem to be som konfusion as to wich jenre they belong to. Varius proposals for jenres has been given. The games that i am talking about the games that ar similar in certain aspekts to DOTA, the Warcraft 3 mod. The idea of such a game dates bak at leest to Starcraft, to the map Aeon of Strife. Such maps wer popular in Warcraft 3 as wel, but the most popular one hapened to be DOTA (Defense of the Ancients). Varius standalone games folowed DOTA, most notably: HON (Heroes of Newerth), LOL (League of Legends), Demigod and the yet to be releesed (as of riting) DOTA 2 (by Valve) and Blizzard DOTA.

Jenres that they ar not good examples of

Eether ther is a kurent jenre that thees games ar good examples of, or ther is not. I think that ther is not. Ther ar a few proposals that one shud konsider.

RPVG (Role-playing video game)

Thees games share som of the elements that ar prototypikal of RPGs, such as leveling, heroes, and items. But they ar not good examples of RPGs. Good examples of RPGs wud be games like Morrowind series, and Neverwinter Nights series. The games ar not very similar to thees games.

Action RPG aka. hack’n’slash

The typikal games of that jenre ar Diablo series, Dungeon Siege series. The games ar not very similar to thees games eether. Altho the games klearly share the aktion element.

FPS (First Person Shooter)

The typikal games of this jenre ar Counter-Strike series, Call of Duty series. The games ar not very similar to thees games eether. Shared elements inklude: relativly fast respawn times, a lot of aktion, rather limited number of items caryd at ons (most ofen 6 in the games listed and ofen 2 in FPS’s).

RTS (Real-time Stategy)

The typikal games of this jenre ar Command and Conquer series (exept ), Starcraft series. The games ar not very similar to thees games eether. Shared elements inklude: upside-down perspektiv, moovment kontrol using the mous, free kamera moovment.

Ther ar, ofk, a number of jenres that the games share nothing or almost nothing with, such as: puzle, adventur, sandbox, simulation, and musik (games).

The need for a new jenre, and the name of that jenre

So, let’s supose that the kase abov is stronj enof to warant the konklusion that thees games ar not sentral to any of the klasik jenres. If we want a jenre wher they ar sentral members, then we need to kreate a new jenre for them. Ther ar varius proposed names for that jenre, altho i dislike all of them. Let’s konsider them below.

DOTA-ish / DOTA-game

This name is not informativ for somone not familiar with any of the games kalled “DOTA”. Good names for jenres ar self-explanatory like the ones listed abov ar. To make an analojy: The jenre “RTS” is not kalled “Command and Conquer-ish” or “Command and Conquer-game”.

Aditionaly, it is historikaly inakurate sins the first, or at leest an erlyr, game of that jenre is Aeon of Strife. This leeds to the next proposal.

AOS-ish / AOS-games

This proposal has the same problem as the abov one: the name is not informativ if one is not familiar with the eponymous game.

MOBA (Multiplayer Online Battle Arena)

This is the best of the proposals that i am familiar with. The problem with it is that the jenre is not reely about arenas. I konsider MOBA a diferent jenre with Bloodline Champions beeing a good example.

Making a new proposal

Given that none of the names or jenres abov ar satisfaktory, wat myt a good name of the jenre be? I think that one shud make the name informativ by naming it after the most important elements of the jenre, i.e., the most sentral propertys of members of the jenre. I think such propertys ar: aktion, teem(play), and heroes. In other words, the games fokus alot on teemplay with lots of aktion and one kontrols a hero (and rarely multiple heroes or semi-heroes). It is not nesesary to kall it “multiplayer” (like in MOBA) sins all teem(play) games ar multiplayer.

The three words kan be kombined in a number of ways. It is a good idea to choos a name that does not hav misleeding konotations and that ar eesy to remember. To make it eesyr to remember, it is a good idea that the initialism kreated of the name kan by pronounsed. To giv further options, the word “game” kan also be used but only in the last position.

With three words ther ar 6 (=3!) posibilitys and 12 with “game” at the end. The posibilitys ar displayed in the table below.

Table 1 – Posible names with the three chosen words

Name Notes
Action Hero Team (game) other konotations, not good akronym, not eesy to pronouns
Action Team Hero (game) not good akronym, eesy to pronouns but misleeding
Hero Team Action (game) kant be pronounsed
Hero Action Team (game) eesy to pronouns but misleeding
Team Hero Action (game)
Team Action Hero (game) other konotations

Som other ideas

Upon reeding this artikl a frend of mine sujested “Battle”. So perhaps somthing like “Hero Team Battle (Game)”.

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