Following the comments of Director and Co-owner of Iron Clad Games, Fraser, our very own Nicholas Greene discussed the current decline in the RTS genre, which lead me to thinking about the relationship between the dying RTS genre and the hugely popular MOBA genre.
Real-time strategy games belong to a genre with roots dating as far back as the early 1980s, but for reasons unknown to many the genre has seen a severe decline in recent years. Many speculate the cause to be a lack of innovation on the developers part, while others consider the explosion of bog standard MMORTS games to be the main factor in the decline. With one genre suffering another explodes; the increasingly popular MOBA genre.
Although the MOBA scene is currently dominated by League of Legends there are a number of other titles fighting for the throne. SMITE recently entered open beta and DOTA 2 is also proving a bit hit with fans of the genre; but why does the increasingly popularity of one genre have to mean a similar decrease in another?
Imagine a developer with the guts and innovation to bridge these two genres. A developer that can capture both the depth and control featured in building and resource management, while also offering the individual accomplishment and praise associated with a dominating MOBA player. There's a ton of different ways they could approach this new breed of games, a genre I dub the MOBARTS. If only I had the imagination to come up with an abbreviation that would actually stick eh?
Nicholas Greene touched on this idea in the comments on his RTS post, and I think it would be a logical step in the evolution of the RTS genre. Some of you may have played Natural Selection, a game that offers a unique hyrbid of FPS and RTS mechanics. One player takes on the role of a Commander, safely tucked away in a protective pod, the Commander must command troops to investigate certain areas, manage resources and construct various buildings. All the while the troops he is commanding are real players, with real emotions and real reactions.
Bringing that feature to the MOBA genre could have the same unique benefits that it provides to Natural Selection. A single players takes a command role, constructing various outposts and buildings, while also commanding the current minions seen in the majority of MOBA games. The player in command would be able to spawn certain unique minions, those with more HP and power than their weaker counterparts, and they could also choose the lane in which these minions spawn. So a smart commander could inform his Champions that he is going to provide extra pushing power to top lane, leaving the team to react and hopefully take down an enemy tower. This could also be used as a distraction, sending all the powerful units to one lane while friendly Champions secretly push another. The potential and tactics involved in such a basic feature are almost endless.
As well as commanding basic minions the commander could also construct various buildings using currency gained by his fighting Champions; as an example, 2% of total gold earned by the team enters a bank exclusive to the commander. This gold could be used to construct towers that provide visibility in certain areas, other buildings that provide buffs to nearby Champions and minions, maybe even some that slow enemy Champions or reduce their damage.
The MOBA genre is still a baby in MMO terms but if League of Legends proves anything, it proves that MMO gamers are not so set in their ways as to avoid such a unique form of game. What would you like to see in a MOBA/RTS hyrbid? Do you feel any currently released games have done this hyrbid justice or are they just attempts at a quick cash cow? Leave your comments below.
Dawngate Closed Beta, War Thunder Ground War, TESO and more! | The Daily XP December 5th
Your Daily MMO and MMORPG News for Thursday December 5th. Today Bethany discusses War Thunder, The Elder Scrolls Online and Dawngate.
Perfect World International, Drakensang Online, New MOBAs and more! | The Daily XP November 21st
Your Daily MMO and MMORPG News for Thursday November 21st. Today Mark discusses Perfect World International, Drakensang Online, ArcheBlade and more.
GTA Online Stimulus Package, Albion Online, Merc Elite and more! | The Daily XP November 7th
Your Daily MMO and MMORPG News for Thursday October 7th. Today Mark discusses Albion Online, Grand Theft Auto Online and Merc Elite.
Five Reasons To Look Forward To League's Fourth Season
With this year's LCS drawn to a close, a new season of League of Legends is just about upon us. It's bringing with it some very, very big changes. Trust me when I say they're something to be very, very excited for.
Ah Muzen Cab SMITE Patch Notes
HiRezBart of Hi-Rez Studios has offered SMITE players a sneak preview of today's upcoming patch notes as Ah Muzen Cab, God of Bees, invades the SMITE battlefield.
LEGO Minifigures Online, EverQuest Next, Infinite Crisis and more! | The Daily XP November 5th
Your Daily MMO and MMORPG News for Tuesday October 5th. Today Kirk discusses LEGO Minifigures Online, EverQuest Next Landmark and Infinite Crisis.
Next-Gen Free to Play Wars, City of Steam, SMITE and more! | The Daily XP October 23rd
Your Daily MMO and MMORPG News for Wednesday October 23rd. Today Bethany discusses City of Steam, Microsoft's Xbox Gold Membership and SMITE.
European Merc Elite Open Beta Now Available
Bigpoint today announced the immediate open beta launch for its free military themed MOBA game, Merc Elite
Solstice Arena is a 'Speed MOBA' from Zynga where matches last between 5-10 minutes, there are no creep waves and everything is a lot more simplified.
GTA Online Wants To Pay You, Merc Elite, Galaxy on Fire: Alliance and more! | The Weekly Loot Ep 73
The Weekly Loot is MMO Attack's Weekly MMO and MMORPG News Show hosted by the lovely and talented Ayodele! Watch for a chance to win a $20 Steam Gift Card!