Dota 2 Articles RSS Feed | GameSkinny.com Dota 2 RSS Feed on GameSkinny.com https://www.gameskinny.com/ en Launch Media Network Warcraft 3: Reforged's Custom Game Policy is Bull https://www.gameskinny.com/n68xr/warcraft-3-reforgeds-custom-game-policy-is-bull https://www.gameskinny.com/n68xr/warcraft-3-reforgeds-custom-game-policy-is-bull Thu, 30 Jan 2020 15:30:13 -0500 Ashley Shankle

The launch of Warcraft 3: Reforged has been rocky to say the least. The game has launched without a ladder, the promised UI is pretty much exactly the same as the original game, and those promised dialogue and cutscene updates are really something. 

These issues are all minor in the face of the largest of them all. It's one that Blizzard themselves wouldn't consider a problem but custom map creators have to suck up: Any Warcraft 3: Reforged custom games are property of Blizzard.

This claim isn't being hyperbolic or an exaggeration in any way. The exact phrasing of the section of the EULA is as follows:

Custom Games are and shall remain the sole and exclusive property of Blizzard. Without limiting the foregoing, you hereby assign to Blizzard all of your rights, title, and interest in and to all Custom Games, including but not limited to any copyrights in the content of any Custom Games.

If for any reason you are prevented or restricted from assigning any rights in the Custom Games to Blizzard, you grant to Blizzard an exclusive, perpetual, worldwide, unconditional, royalty free, irrevocable license enabling Blizzard to fully exploit the Custom Games (or any component thereof) for any purpose and in any manner whatsoever.

What this means is Blizzard is able to claim any custom game modes and content as their own and use it however they wish including taking content creators' hard work and claiming it as their own.

Punishment for Missing the Boat

It's not hard to see why Blizzard has decided to take this stance if you understand the history behind Warcraft 3 and DotA. Well-before League of Legends smashed onto the scene, there was the Warcraft 3 custom game DotA.

Despite being a Warcraft 3 custom game, DotA dominated a large part of the competitive gaming scene for nearly a decade and eventually became more popular than the game that housed it. In time, DotA-likes such as League of Legends and Heroes of Newerth led the charge into the full-fledged MOBA genre that continues today.

Eventually, Valve wrangled in DotA developer IceFrog to create Dota 2 as a full-fledged titled, before Blizzard could get to him themselves. And so Blizzard was left to cobble their own MOBA together in Heroes of the Storm, without the characters that were so well-known to the community and without the vision of the original game.

DOA

It's no mystery why Blizzard has decided to grasp onto any potential massive hits within Warcraft 3's custom game sphere you would, too, if you were burned by being too slow on the draw to lock down an emerging genre.

The objective failure of Heroes of the Storm doesn't help, either. (Hey, don't shoot the messenger here. I played HotS daily for over a year. Nothing changes the fact its competitive scene has been gutted and development put on the backburner.)

This isn't just a slap to the face to the vast majority of content creators for the Warcraft 3 scene that dump hundreds of hours into working up new and creative game modes, it's a glaring example of just how far the Blizzard of today is from what its fanbase imagines it to be.

It's no one but Blizzard's own fault that they didn't get on the Dota 2 train in time, but content creators for this new half-baked Warcraft 3 remaster will have to suffer for Blizzard's own inaction all those years ago.

How anyone could possibly defend this decision is totally and utterly beyond me, but one thing is for certain: this EULA ensures Warcraft 3: Reforged's custom game scene is dead on arrival.

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5 Best Free to Play Games on Steam https://www.gameskinny.com/zb02e/5-best-free-to-play-games-on-steam https://www.gameskinny.com/zb02e/5-best-free-to-play-games-on-steam Mon, 16 Dec 2019 16:22:43 -0500 Gabriel Moss

The holiday season is here in full force, and you may be wondering what to play while snuggled in at home — hopefully with a mug of hot cocoa or eggnog in hand. Luckily, Steam has quite the selection of great free to play games that you can download and enjoy without paying a single cent.

Here is our list of the five best free to play games on Steam, and we suggest setting aside some time. Each of these titles can give you upwards of 1,000+ hours of gameplay if you stick with them.

They're also online-only — there is no traditional single-player title on this list — so you'll need a good internet connection to get the maximum possible enjoyment.

Destiny 2

First on our list is Destiny 2. Bringing a previously paid game with hundreds of hours of content and easily over $100 in retail down to the price of "free" is quite the move for Bungie, who is best known for the Halo series.

Destiny 2 has a lot of the same shooting and looting action of its predecessor, and the easiest way to describe it to new players is if Halo and Diablo had a baby. That's Destiny 2.

You can join a clan, play through several cinema-quality narrative campaigns alone or with your friends, and enjoy the ever-growing laundry list of multiplayer strikes (dungeon crawls) and raids as you increase in power with tons of new gear and unlockables.

Warframe

Warframe isn't dissimilar from the Destiny series in concept; you largely do much of the same shooting, looting, and raiding to the tone of a larger narrative campaign.

The difference here is that you do it all as a heavily armored ninja warrior, called a Tenno. Warframe boasts a bombastic movement system that lets you jump, wall-run, and zoom through combat with ease, easily making it the most acrobatic on our list. The community is also notoriously helpful to new players.

Path of Exile

Path of Exile is a top-down isometric action RPG, like Diablo. It receives consistent quarterly updates with new content, items, and bosses, and it’s apparently much more mechanically similar to Diablo 2 than the heavily-streamlined Diablo 3.

This is important to note because many long-time ARPG fans revere Diablo 2 as the best (and most challenging) title in the genre, and Path of Exile is widely regarded as a return to form in that respect. It’s also free.

Dota 2

Defense of the Ancients 2, or Dota 2 for short, is an action-packed multiplayer online battle arena where players choose a hero and clash against the other teams’ heroes and minions as both sides compete in a large-scale game of tug-of-war.

It’s very similar to League of Legends, which is the single most played competitive game in the world, but is known for being more complex — offering more options to deck your hero out during each round.

If you’re in more of a competitive gaming frame of mind, Dota 2 is a barrel of fun. Just be prepared to spend a lot of time (in the hundreds of hours) learning the gameplay curve against bots before regularly winning random online matches or competing in tournaments.

Team Fortress 2

All of the aforementioned titles ask hundreds of hours from you before you get into the ‘meat’ of the experience. If you’re left wanting a chilled-out multiplayer shooter to simply enjoy with your friends, Team Fortress 2 is one of the best, if not the very best free multiplayer shooter on Steam.

It’s been a classic cornerstone of online gaming since it was released in 2007 alongside the infamous Orange Box collection. And now, sitting on top of a bevy of content updates since release, Team Fortress 2 continues to be kept alive by a loyal community — one who embraces the joy of endlessly trading items, weapons, and cosmetics back and forth through the Steam Inventory.

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Those are the five best free to play games on Steam. Sure, there are others, but you should start with these. 

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Dota Underlords: The Best Heroes to Recruit in Any Match https://www.gameskinny.com/a91h0/dota-underlords-the-best-heroes-to-recruit-in-any-match https://www.gameskinny.com/a91h0/dota-underlords-the-best-heroes-to-recruit-in-any-match Mon, 24 Jun 2019 10:48:21 -0400 Sergey_3847

After the massive success of the Autochess mod for Dota 2, Valve has released its own official version: Dota Underlords

There are a lot of new strategies in Dota Underlords since it's not an exact replica of the Autochess mod.

If you are lost and can't decide which heroes to pick for your units, then check out the best heroes tier list below, which will give you more than enough ideas on how to win match-ups in Dota Underlords.

Drow Ranger

  • Alliance: Heartless/Hunter
  • Cost: $1

At the moment, this Hunter hero is by far the most broken character in Dota Underlords. Her Precision Aura ability grants attack speed and damage boosts to all of her allies within one cell, which means that she can potentially buff eight allies at once, including herself.

Drow Ranger is great in both the early and late games, and is an all-around favorite. So if you want to win in Dota Underlords, just play Drow Ranger until it gets nerfed.

Crystal Maiden

  • Alliance: Human/Mage
  • Cost: $2

If Drow Ranger is the most powerful hero in Dota Underlords, then Crystal Maiden is the most valuable one.

Her Arcane Aura ability synergizes well with allies that have low ability cooldowns. Her passive can stack, which can lead up to 36% mana regenaration for all of her allies every two seconds.

Such a powerful enabler can fit in almost any team composition, but of course, Mage teams will benefit the most from her ability.

Beastmaster

  • Alliance: Brawny/Hunter
  • Cost: $2

The Brawny synergy plays a huge role in Beastmaster strategy. You can make him virtually unbeatable by stacking his health points.

Brawny units gain +50 HP for each kill they make, which can potentially bring Beastmaster's health total up to 17,000.

Of course, this requires a lot of set-up, but if you can make it work, then you are guaranteed to win.

Chaos Knight

  • Alliance: Demon/Knight
  • Cost: $2

Knight units are probably the only ones that can seriously compete against Mages in the current meta.

Chaos Knight can also work really well within a Demon unit, where damage can stack up really high. For example, if you have only one type of Demon unit on the board, you will gain +50% damage boost.

Either way, this is a great hero to counter meta if you want to punish the top tier alliances.

Pudge

  • Alliance: Heartless/Warrior
  • Cost: $2

If you like to play with Warrior units, then Pudge is the hero you will need to include into each and every one of them, regardless of the character ratio.

This hero can also generate an incredibly powerful "meat shield" by giving him Blade Mail item at rank three. It will increase his survivability, especially against AoEs.

Since Warriors and Hunters synergize really well, this hero in combination with Drow Ranger can do a lot of work on the battlefield.

Queen of Pain

  • Alliance: Demon/Assassin
  • Cost: $2

This is an excellent support character that can really turn the tides with the help of her Scream of Pain ability, which basically works like an AoE.

She can be both equally effective against Demon units and when playing for them. She will work great alongside such heroes like Chaos Knight, Doom, and Demon Hunter.

Tiny

  • Alliance: Primordial/Warrior
  • Cost: $1

Tiny has one of the most fun abilities in the game: Toss. He basically picks up an enemy and throws them into another enemy unit dealing damage and stunning both of them.

Tiny works great with tanky heroes, which can be put on the last row and bait enemies to jump into Tiny's area. Then, you can easily pick them up and toss away until they're done.

Timbersaw

  • Alliance: Scrappy/Inventor
  • Cost: $2

Inventor units can be just as resilient as the Warrior and Brawny units with all their HP buff synergies.

Timbersaw can be a part of an excellent opening strategy alongside such heroes like Clockwork and Tinker.

He's not particularly good in the midgame, but if you can make it to the endgame, then you will be rewarded greatly.

Treant Protector

  • Alliance: Elusive/Druid
  • Cost: $2

This is another excellent support character for Hunters and other Druids. It's not as good against Mages, but such units like Trolls and Assassins will suffer immensely under the pressure of its Leech Seed ability.

It basically drains their life total and slows them down so much that at a certain point of a match-up they can't do anything else but accept defeat.

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Currently, Valve is testing out the new heroes in the open beta, so expect some nerfs in the future. But for now, this list should give you the right feel for the meta and where to start in Dota Underlords. Will this game's meta be as loose as regular ol' Dota 2? We'll see in time.

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How to Play the Dota Underlords Private Beta https://www.gameskinny.com/0sxhh/how-to-play-the-dota-underlords-private-beta https://www.gameskinny.com/0sxhh/how-to-play-the-dota-underlords-private-beta Thu, 20 Jun 2019 08:47:06 -0400 Sergey_3847

Dota Underlords is a spin-off mod for Dota 2, which was recently released by Valve for the purposes of server stress testing. The current beta version of the game is a closed one, although it is expected to enter the open beta sooner rather than later.

If you want to be the first one to try out this new popular mod-turned-game, below you will find brief instructions on how to enter the private beta of Dota Underlords. For some who participated in the Dota 2 beta way back when, one part may be very familiar.

Step 1: Purchase Battle Pass 2019

Dota Underlords private beta is available only to owners of The International Battle Pass 2019 or those granted a beta key from a Battle Pass owner.

If you don't own the Battle Pass, then you can purchase it on the official Dota 2 store page, which costs $9.99. The Battle Pass expires on 9 September 2019, and it gives you access to the Wrath of the Mo'rokai game mode, as well as a Jungle Expedition.

Then, you need to make sure that your Battle Pass has been activated. For this you need to restart your Steam client and Dota 2 client. If you've done everything correctly, then you will see the Dota Underlords icon in your Dota 2 client.

Step 2: Install Dota Underlords

Click the "Add to Steam library" option under the Dota Underlords icon, and open your Steam client.

Go to Library and select Dota Underlords from the list. Click on the Install button and wait before the game downloads.

If you got the beta key from one of the owners of the Battle Pass, then you can do the following to activate your key:

  1. Open your Steam client
  2. Go to Games in the upper menu
  3. Select Activate product on Steam
  4. Insert your beta key
  5. Press Next and Install

Remember, that every owner of the Battle Pass has three extra keys to spare before the official release of Dota Underlords.

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Dota Auto Chess Gods Strategy Guide: Mars and Zeus https://www.gameskinny.com/ccoje/dota-auto-chess-gods-strategy-guide-mars-and-zeus https://www.gameskinny.com/ccoje/dota-auto-chess-gods-strategy-guide-mars-and-zeus Thu, 04 Apr 2019 10:00:43 -0400 Sergey_3847

The custom Dota 2 map Dota Auto Chess has just received a new update, which added two new god chess pieces to the game's roster: Mars and Zeus. Mars has been added in the original Dota 2 recently, but his playstyle in the Auto Chess map is something else.

Since most players have gotten familiar with Mars, you will see him during your match-ups a lot more often. But don't underestimate Zeus, as this god has a few neat tricks under his sleeve as well.

If you want to know how to play both of these chess pieces well, then follow our strategy guide for Dota Auto Chess below.

Mars Strategy Guide

Mars Abilities

Mars has two main abilities that cost no mana: Overwhelming Superiority, which is a common race ability for all gods, and Fortified Armor, a Warrior class ability.

His class ability means that Mars synergizes well with other Warrior chess pieces. However, you must remember that if you want his race ability to work, which reduces cooldowns by 50%, you cannot use more than one piece of the same race on the board.

Here is the complete breakdown of his Overwhelming Superiority ability:

  • 1x God: All allies cooldown gets reduced by 50%
  • 2x God: All allies cooldown gets reduced by 75%
Mars Synergies

Mars is a support piece that doesn't really deal any damage except his auto shield attack that hits all enemies in close range every 8s, or every 4s if you count his 50% cooldown reduction.

Here are the best chess pieces that synergize with Mars:

  • Omniknight: Knights in general are very strong tanks, and with the help of Overwhelming Superiority they become even stronger
  • Axe: Being a Warrior himself, he gets double bonus from Mars, and since he has his own cooldown ability, it makes him a super efficient companion
  • Kunkka: Another Warrior piece that controls the board using his Silence ability will benefit greatly from the god's cooldown
  • Templar Assassin: An invincible DPS piece that with the help of Mars can use Refraction every 3s, which is extremely efficient

Zeus Strategy Guide

Zeus Abilities

In addition to the god's Overwhelming Superiority and Mage's Magic Vulnerability abilities, Zeus also possesses a third unique set of abilities called Thundergod's Wrath.

It allows Zeus to blast all enemies with lightning wherever they may be on the board. But there is only a 50% chance of it hitting the target, so the damage in this case is not guaranteed.

Here is the complete breakdown of his Thundergod's Wrath ability:

  • Damage: 300/400/500
  • Damage Chance: 20%/30%/40%
  • Courier Damage Chance: 10%/15%/20%
  • Cooldown: 15/12/9

The Courier damage can play an especially important role in the late game, so combining Zeus with a few other Mages would be a great strategy for a truly colossal amount of damage.

Zeus Synergies

Mage pieces are definitely the best choices for Zeus, as his cooldown and damage abilities can really push things forward. But there are a few solid Mechs and Warlocks that will work great with this god, too.

Here are some of the best chess pieces that synergize with Zeus:

  • Tinker: This Mech needs to be buffed to three stars, after which he will be able to launch rockets every second in case he has decent mana regeneration
  • Razor: One of the best Mages in the game will be able to cast his Plasma Field every 2.5s with the help of Zeus
  • Necrophos: A late-game Warlock that will heal all your companion pieces
  • Enigma: This specific Warlock is perfect against Knights, as he can just ignore their shields

Mars + Zeus Combo

Obviously, the best strategy would be to combine both gods at the same time and use them as support for Mages and Warriors.

Here is how this combo works in every step of the match-up:

  1. Play Tusk and buff to three stars
  2. Play Mars and buff to three stars
  3. Play Juggernaut and buff to two stars
  4. Play Tinker and buff to three stars
  5. Play Crystal Maiden and buff to two stars
  6. Play Razor and buff to three stars
  7. Play Treant protector and buff to three stars
  8. Play Zeus and buff to two stars

Note: The following chess pieces must be excluded from the combo, otherwise the gods' combo will not work:

  • Ogre Magi
  • Sniper
  • Gyrocopter

As a result you will have the following buffs applied to your chess pieces:

  • Warriors get +5 armor
  • Mages get 35% magic resistance reduction
  • Gods reduce cooldown by 75%

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Try this cool new combo out, and be sure to come back soon for more Dota Auto Chess guides here at GameSkinny!

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How To Build And Play Mars In Dota 2 https://www.gameskinny.com/yfybq/how-to-build-and-play-mars-in-dota-2 https://www.gameskinny.com/yfybq/how-to-build-and-play-mars-in-dota-2 Sun, 10 Mar 2019 10:00:02 -0400 Sergey_3847

Patch 7.21c was recently launched for Dota 2, and, to some players' dismay, it did not include Mars, a new hero that Valve has been promising would release in early March. However, on March 5, an unexpected update was released, which indeed added the new hero to the game.

Mars is a strength hero, and he originates from Roman mythology — the god of war who never leaves the battlefield. His three best roles are that of Tank, Carry, and Initiator, and players are already beginning to determine an optimal build for the new hero.

We will cover that build in this complete guide. Additionally, players will find all the tips and tricks they need to play Mars well in Dota 2.

How To Use Mars's Abilities

Spear of Mars
  • Damage: 100/175/250/325
  • Impale Stun Duration: 1.6/2/2.4/2.8
  • Mana Cost: 100
  • Cooldown: 14s

With the help of this magical ability, Mars can throw his spear, which hits and knocks back everyone in its path. The first enemies that are hit by the spear are even pushed back until they are impaled by a rock or a tree, which leaves them stunned.

Notably, Nature’s Prophet and Sprout work very well with this ability. Also, remember that the spear doesn't work on the Iron Branch tree. However, you can impale an enemy hero with the edge of the Arena of Blood for some non-stop beating.

God's Rebuke
  • Critical Damage: 160/200/240/280%
  • Mana Cost: 55/60/65/70
  • Cooldown: 16/14/12/10s

God's Rebuke allows Mars to use his shield to push back all of the units standing in front of him. This deals critical damage, and the physical damage increases depending on how much mana you spent on it.

This ability works really well with various attack modifiers, such as Desolator, Maelstorm, Satanic, and so on. It also has True Strike, which is one of the most valuable mechanics in the game right now.

Bulwark
  • Front Damage Reduction: 25/40/55/70%
  • Side Damage Reduction: 12/20/27/35%

With the help of Bulwark, all attacks from the front and side are blocked by Mars's shield, significantly reducing the damage the hero will take. However, this ability is mostly focused on frontal damage, so keep that in mind when using your shield.

It is important to note that this ability reduces damage only from auto attacks, and it is useless against spell damage. That said, a 25% to 70% damage reduction against physical attacks is still a very nice bonus to have.

Arena Of Blood
  • Spear Damage: 150/200/250
  • Mana Cost: 200
  • Cooldown: 90/75/60s

Mars can call upon his own Ash Legion, which creates an arena that can help prevent an opponent from fleeing from battle while simultaneously keeping others out of the fight. While it is not worth using for a Legion Commander duel, it will help you even the odds in other fights.

To note, enemies can get out of the arena by using blinks or other similar abilities, including Pounce, Shield Crash, and Swashbuckle. It is also important to remember that Force Staff won't work on an arena.

Recommended Items And Build For Mars

Mars has a very specific purpose in Dota 2, so we try to figure out the best main build for him by outlining his strengths and weaknesses. First of all, Mars can withstand a lot of physical damage while simultaneously dealing high burst damage himself.

However, he is weak to spell damage and has low mobility. This makes him somewhat vulnerable to magic. Additionally, his mana pool is not his strongest characteristic, and this is what you will want to target first when buying items for your Mars build.

Here are some specific recommendations on how to build Mars:

Essential Items
  • Soul Ring: You simply must buy this item as soon as you can in order to gain access to more mana.
  • Mjollnir: Synergizes with God's Rebuke by adding some powerfull spell damage to the shield.
  • Vladmir's Offering: A universally powerful tool that not only grants Mars more mana, but also heals his allies.
  • Armlet of Mordiggian: Greatly increases your strength, damage, and armor.
  • Shadow Blade: Blink effect that makes Mars invisible for 14 seconds.
  • Nullifier: Since Mars's spear can't damage ghosts, you need something that will reveal them and make them beatable.
  • Heaven's Halberd: Disarms enemies for a short period.
  • Lotus Orb: Item that dispels silence effects.
  • Pipe of Insight: Magic shield that protects Mars from spell damage.
Additional Items
  • Starting Game:
    • Stout Shield
    • Tango x2
    • Healing Salve
    • Enchanted Mango
  • Early-Game:
    • Quelling Blade
    • Magic Wand
    • Boots of Speed
  • Mid-Game:
    • Power Treads
    • Blink Dagger
    • BKB
  • Late-Game:
    • Phase Boots
    • Drum of Endurance
  • Situational:
    • Battle Fury
    • Diffusal Blade
    • Abyssal Blade
    • MKB

How To Level Mars

Here is a complete breakdown of the abilities that you should upgrade when leveling up as Mars:

  • Spear of Mars: Levels 1, 3, 5, 7
  • God's Rebuke: Levels 4, 8, 9, 11
  • Bulwark: Levels 2, 13, 14, 16
  • Arena of Blood: Levels 6, 12, 18

As for the Talent Tree, opt for the following choices:

  • Level 10: +20 Movement Speed
  • Level 15: +8 Armor
  • Level 20: Spear of Mars +200 Damage
  • Level 25: Arena Of Blood Grants Team +100 HP Regen

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With the right build, Mars can be a powerful hero. We hope this guide will help as you learn to play him effectively.

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7 Video Games We'd Love to See as Olympic Events https://www.gameskinny.com/wafa6/7-video-games-wed-love-to-see-as-olympic-events https://www.gameskinny.com/wafa6/7-video-games-wed-love-to-see-as-olympic-events Wed, 21 Feb 2018 12:29:16 -0500 Andrew Krajewski

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Dance Dance Revolution
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What better way to round out our list than to pick a game that'll actually make you sweat. Like figure skating or floor exercise, DDR would require precision, rhythm, and endurance. It would be a joy to watch the routines people would come up with to perform using a DDR machine. The best part is that score keeping is built into the game so there's no worry about judges having any kind of bias!

\n

---

\n

That wraps up our wish list for Olympic video games. Whether it be a fighting game, a speed run, a high score, or a button masher we'd love to see every type of video game in the Olympics some day. The Olympics bring people together and the inclusion of these video games would continue to do so. Did your favorite game make our cut? Let us know in the comments below! 

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/m/e/i/mei-screenshot-003-20fd8.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/m/e/i/mei-screenshot-003-20fd8.jpg","type":"slide","id":"179324","description":"
Overwatch
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Overwatch has accomplished something that very few other games have. It's created a universe bigger than itself. The game is often lauded for its diverse portrayal of characters and positive depiction of various places around the world. Like the Olympics, Overwatch welcomes people to its world and strives to bring people together, at least until your teammate picks hanzo when you need a healer.

\n

The pro scene is no joke either and the OWL has further legitimized Overwatch as an eSport. There is a tremendous amount of precision, coordination, and decision-making required at the highest levels of play that still maintains a high level of enjoyment for spectators.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/d/o/t/dota-849c1.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/d/o/t/dota-849c1.jpg","type":"slide","id":"179322","description":"
DotA 2
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DotA 2, League of Legends, Heroes of the Storm, or even SMITE -- there are several great MOBA games with thriving eSports scenes. I've picked DotA 2, I'm sure to the chagrin of many. DotA was the original MOBA, and it deserves some credit for that. It also is arguably more complex than other titles due to the way certain heroes scale differently than others, the ability to deny creeps, and the ability to use teleport scrolls to reach other towers. DotA also tends to have a higher technical ceiling, which can make it harder to master. It wouldn't be the Olympics if the best players weren't featured competing in the toughest of the MOBAs.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/t/r/i/trials-fusion-04456.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/t/r/i/trials-fusion-04456.jpg","type":"slide","id":"179320","description":"
Trials Fusion
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Trials games are notoriously hard on expert courses, which makes them a perfect contender for an Olympic event. Reducing faults (how many times you crash in a single run) would become key if this game were "raced" professionally. Right now, players on the leaderboards can take as many attempts as possible for a perfect run, but with only one chance to get the best possible time, there is much more room for error, which ultimately makes for more exciting competition. It would also be interesting to see a relay-style race using multiple competitors on multiple tracks. The added pressure of the Olympics would make the races that much more exciting to watch, while competitors wouldn't be able constantly restart for perfect times.

\n

The game is also fairly pretty to look at, especially during epic jumps with incredible vistas in the background.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/p/r/o/protoss-archon-002-large-5b6ec.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/p/r/o/protoss-archon-002-large-5b6ec.jpg","type":"slide","id":"179321","description":"
StarCraft II
\n

Without Starcraft, who knows what modern professional eSports would look like? The game's impact on gaming is so grand that even Google has an Easter egg mini-game when you search for zerg rush, which is a reference to the fun-to-watch strategy in Starcraft that overwhelms opponents if they can't react quickly enough. Starcraft also is a shining example of a game that requires precision, concentration, and the ability to adapt. 

\n

Pro players are extremely dexterous, reaching up to 600 APM (actions per minute). I don't think I've ever done 10 anything in a second, let alone making 10 meaningful in-game actions every second. Starcraft also lends itself to multiple formats like 1v1, 2v2, and even larger team sizes.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/m/a/smash-sbag-c8580.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/m/a/smash-sbag-c8580.jpg","type":"slide","id":"179319","description":"
Super Smash Bros.
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What separates Super Smash Bros. from other fighting games? First, it gets bonus points because of Mario -- sorry, it just does. Second, Smash Bros. games don't have traditional life meters like other fighting games. The percentage bar the game uses means anyone can come back from the brink of defeat and adds extra excitement to the game. The entire Super Smash Bros. franchise provides a great opportunity for several Olympic events. Besides the traditional 1v1 match-ups, we could also see 2v2 matchups, both with friendly fire and without. If we go into the most recent game, we can even have 4v4 matches that would really add extra depth to the teamwork required to excel.

\n

But the best part is yet to come: we could also have individuals and teams take on the home run contest to see who could knock that sandbag the farthest!

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/u/p/super-mario-nintendo-247401-561ad.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/u/p/super-mario-nintendo-247401-561ad.jpg","type":"slide","id":"179317","description":"
Super Mario 64
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Speaking of cross-country skiing, who wouldn't love to watch hours-long speedruns of titles over and over? All joking aside, of the various speed running candidates, Super Mario 64 may feel like a safe bet, but that doesn't mean it wouldn't be fun to watch as an Olympic event. In 100% runs it would be fascinating to watch speed runners determine which routes are the fastest in order to save Princess Peach. The game is big enough and difficult enough to punish the smallest mistakes while maintaining a high level of watchability because of how well known it is. Perhaps a graphical remaster would help the game out, but otherwise, it's a terrific candidate for the Olympic games.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/i/o/c/iocrings-24b76.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/i/o/c/iocrings-24b76.jpg","type":"slide","id":"179316","description":"

With the 2018 Winter Olympics in full swing in PyeongChang, gamers might think about how South Koreans are well-known for their gaming prowess. Naturally, we thought, "Hey, if ESPN covers esports, why can't the Olympics include them?" While it's a long shot, we can still fantasize about which games we would love to see at the Olympic Games. The following highly scientific (trust me when I say we here at GameSkinny have all the science) list is compiled based on a game's renown, required skill level, and, unlike the actual Olympics, overall watchability (I'm looking at you cross-country skiing!).

"}]]]>
How eSports Are Stifling Creativity in Games https://www.gameskinny.com/tnnx1/how-esports-are-stifling-creativity-in-games https://www.gameskinny.com/tnnx1/how-esports-are-stifling-creativity-in-games Fri, 19 Jan 2018 13:41:26 -0500 Alberto C.

As games have become more and more accessible over time, their weight in the entertainment industry has grown. Video games not only represent a bigger piece of the pie than ever before, they’re also shaping the way we think in other areas. Talks on including video game competitions in the Olympic Games have been ongoing for a while now, and the vast increase in cash prizes, possible thanks to millions of spectators that watch the tournaments, showcases that gaming competition is here to stay. A caption of the largest prize pools in eSports can be seen below.

But the effects of the rise of skilled gaming competitions appear to be reaching, intentionally or not, much further than most expected. Developers seem to be increasingly focused on developing titles specifically for eSports at the expense of a game or studio's originality. The goal is shifting, for at least some developers, from “what makes this a good game to play” to “what would be a good game to play and watch.” Obviously, if both can be satisfied, well then it’s a win-win, and this article will be forgotten in due time. However, the recent trend suggests that creativity will be the true victim.

Rainbow Six Siege, the latest in the saga that made a mark for its unforgiving combat and highly rewarding tactical approach and planning, now resembles Counter-Strike more than almost any other RS game before it, especially those titles that received the most praise back in the day. Relic's Dawn of War series already took a leap of faith when it morphed from a more traditional base-builder RTS to a more tactical action-RPG in Dawn of War II. The radical change in gameplay disappointed some but was still well received by many who appreciated the blend between RTS and RPG elements that reminded many of some of Warcraft III's best parts. The changes made to the most recent title have been an overall miss, with poorer reception not just from game critics, but staunch negative feedback from the playerbase thanks to its suspicious similarity to Starcraft II and MOBA gameplay.

And it's not only game series that have suffered. Developers and publishers that once tried to distinguish themselves from the competition are now mimicking or altering their own products to give them a spectator-friendly edge. Studios once renowned for the quality of their products and uniqueness within the market now appear to be making copycats of one another the same way many developers tried to copy Call of Duty's successful formula in their own shooters. Whereas Valve has Dota 2 and The Artifact (a Dota 2 card game that is currently in development), Blizzard has Heroes of the Storm, Hearthstone, and Overwatch (another heavily influenced MOBA title). And then there are the cases from other lesser-known but increasingly large developers, such as Hi-Rez Studio's SMITE and Paladins, or arguably the most successful MOBA of all, League of Legends.

The arena of The International 2017 (Dota 2)

From a business perspective, it is easy to understand the logic in sticking to a formula that has a high rate of success. But decision makers at the head of these companies would do well to remember that it was neither business thinking nor a profitable streaming industry alone that got them to managing games that now account for millions of dollars and viewers. MOBA origins can largely be attributed to the creation of a single custom map made back in the days of Starcraft known as Aeon of Strife, made by a mapmaker known only as Aeon64. Likewise, it should go without saying that other incredibly successful titles nowadays, such as MinecraftPlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds, or Counter-Strike do not have their origins in rooms full of MBA executives, but rather in videogame enthusiasts themselves.

Though too early to say for certain, it appears that some bigger developers have ceased to be concerned with making their own thing and are now aiming for the shareholder-friendly, easily successful formulas. The "problem" with the success of eSports is that it appears to be contributing to this narrowing of the companies' views on the long term. The good news is that this gives indie developers more room to shine than ever. Already easier to get financed thanks to crowdfunding, the smaller studios have a great opportunity to share their own ideas without having to worry about being overshadowed by the bigger kids that are all too concerned with imitating each other.

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Steam Reveals 2017's Biggest Moneymakers https://www.gameskinny.com/szkqv/steam-reveals-2017s-biggest-moneymakers https://www.gameskinny.com/szkqv/steam-reveals-2017s-biggest-moneymakers Tue, 02 Jan 2018 18:03:00 -0500 Lewis Parsons

Valve has come out with a list of the top 100 moneymakers on Steam for 2017, and while it includes a fair share of expected and consistently profitable titles such as The Witcher 3, GTA V, and Rocket League, there were a decent amount of surprises making the list.

The Top 12:

Valve arrived at this by taking into account game sales, DLC, and in-game transactions. While we know roughly where a game placed on the list, we don't know exact revenue numbers; nor where in each tier an individual game falls.

Valve also published a list of the most played games of 2017, which, not surprisingly, sees a lot of overlap with the biggest earners for the year.

 

 

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Top eSports Teams of 2017: Who Is On Top and Who Is On the Rise https://www.gameskinny.com/qk2cz/top-esports-teams-of-2017-who-is-on-top-and-who-is-on-the-rise https://www.gameskinny.com/qk2cz/top-esports-teams-of-2017-who-is-on-top-and-who-is-on-the-rise Sat, 23 Dec 2017 11:00:03 -0500 Joseph Rowe

Who's on top? What's on bottom? Oh wait, this isn't e-bbot and Costello. We're talking about both the best and the most promising e-Sports teams of 2017 in this wrap-up of the year's competitive gaming scene.

Who's On Top? 

CS: GO

Counter-Strike in its various forms has been a staple of the competitive gaming scene for nearly two decades. The two biggest teams this year, according to ESL Gaming, are SK Gaming from Brazil and Faze Clan with players from Nordic and Slavic backgrounds. 

SK Gaming's team consists of FalleN, fer, coldzera, TACO, and boltz. This Brazilian team sits at the top both in terms of club ranking as well as power ranking on ESL Gaming. They won Blast Pro Series in Copenhagen, Dreamhack Summer, ESL One Cologne, and cs_summit as well as placing as runners-up in this year's Subaru Invitational and the North American e-Sports Championship Series Season 3. The video above features the grand finals between C9 and SK Gaming, where the latter team goes 3-0 in a shutout.

FaZe Clan is a much more international team than SK Gaming is. They consist of Norway's rain, Denmark's karrigan, Bosnia and Herzegovina's NiKo, Slovakia's GuardiaN, and Sweden's olofmeister. They placed first in season 3 of the Europe e-sports Championship Series, and were runners-up in season 4. They were second in both player and club rankings on ESL Gaming. They also won 3-0 against Team Liquid at ESL One New York.

DotA 2

DotA 2, the most hardcore of the MOBAs and the genre's origin source, is another staple of the competitive gaming scene. This year saw some great premiere events, with one prize pool being 24 million American dollarydoos.

Team Liquid is on top this year according to GosuGamers. They were the ones who took home the biggest piece of that giant prize pool at the International this year. The team consists of Germany's KuroKy-, Bulgaria's MinD_ContRoL, Finland's Matumbaman, Jordan/Poland's Miracle-, and Lebanon's GH. Not only did they win big at this year's International, they also placed second against Team Secret at DreamLeague Season 8. The video above features the finals match from the International between Newbee and Team Liquid.

Team Secret brought their secret sauce to the table this year and won against Team Liquid in the finals in DreamLeague Season 8. They consist of Denmark's Ace, Malaysia's MidOne, Germany's Fata, Jordan's YapzOr, and Estonia's Puppey. In addition to taking first against Team Liquid, they also came in second against VP twice this year, at ESL One Hamburg and DotA Summit 7.

League of Legends

While League hasn't been around quite as long as DotA, it was and perhaps still is the more popular of the two. It is one of the biggest games to help shape MOBAs as a genre. The two big teams this year that came out on top at the World Championships were Samsung Galaxy and SK Telecom T1. 

The official champions of Riot's World Championships for League of Legends this year were the members of Samsung Galaxy (not to be confused with the LA Galaxy). They took home a whopping 1.7 million for winning. This Korean team consists of CuVee, Ambition, Haru, Crown, Ruler, and CoreJJ. They won back in 2014 but struggled for a few years until they took the win in 2017. The clip above is of their matches against fellow Korean team SK Telecom T1.

SK Telecom T1 took second this year at the World Championships, but they are still as amazing as they were when they won two years in a row and three years total. They got shut out this year, but still managed to take home $620K. They consist of Untara, Blank, Faker, Bang, Wolf, and Effort. 

Who's on the Rise?

CS: GO

My favorite eSports team of the year is the Silver Snipers. Their ages range from 62 to 81. These senior Swedes surprised a lot of people this year by proving that age doesn't keep one from taking part in competitive gaming.

What's truly amazing about this team isn't just their age, but the implications of having older teams in the eSports scene. One of the biggest bummers of competitive gaming is that it has a rather steep age cutoff. Nothing prevents older players from competing, but many of them lack the reaction times, are too injured from their earlier competitive years, or do not have the time to dedicate to competitive gaming like they used to, and this leads to the main competitors in eSports being teens or people in their early 20s. However, if more senior citizens start stepping up to the plate, maybe we can see different age brackets at tournaments, which could lead to an eSports scene that's inclusive of all ages.

DotA

The biggest team to come out in 2017 that's worth looking out for next year is OpTic Gaming, previously known mostly for its Call of Duty team. This team is composed of members who were originally a part of another team that was formed a few months ago known as the Dire. The roster consists of Sweden's Pajkatt and zai, America's CC&C and ppd, and, at least for now, temporary stand-in Saksa from Macedonia. 80% of the team has been to the International, with some of them having won. This is a team made of incredibly talented players, and they're definitely worth looking out for in 2018. The video above features ppd back when he played for EG and won finals at the International. 

The other team to look out for is Fnatic's newer roster. The players include Canada's EternaLEnvY, Philippine's Abed and DJ, Malaysia's Ohaiyo, and Sweden's pieliedie and Xcalibur. The only player that isn't new to the team is Ohaiyo, who has been on Fnatic's DotA team since 2015. According to esportsranks, EternaLEnvY is a big gambler in terms of game plays; he either wins gloriously or fails spectacularly, and he is incredibly fun to watch. 

League of Legends

 Although not completely new, Longzhu Gaming (formerly known as Incredible Miracle) surprised a lot of fans this year when they beat out SK Telecom T1 at LCK Summer Season. Longzhu had been in a bit of a rough patch but managed to get to the finals, where they surprised everyone by winning out against SKT. The team consists of Korea's Khan, Rascal, Cuzz, Peanut, Bdd, PraY, and GorillA. Considering SK Telecom T1 were the second-place winners of this year's World Championship, and Longzhu Gaming managed to beat them over the summer, we might see them do better next year instead of losing to Samsung 0-3 in the quarterfinals.

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That does it for 2017's roundup of top and rising eSports teams. Were there any big names I missed on the list? Any small names I might've missed for rising teams? Any teams from other games you think are worthy of getting recognition this year? Let us know in the comments!

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Interview with Lyrical: Caster for Dota 2's The International 7 https://www.gameskinny.com/w3b35/interview-with-lyrical-caster-for-dota-2s-the-international-7 https://www.gameskinny.com/w3b35/interview-with-lyrical-caster-for-dota-2s-the-international-7 Thu, 03 Aug 2017 10:36:19 -0400 palpatine112

The Dota 2 International 2017 finals are almost upon us. The Seattle stage is set, the teams are beginning to arrive, and the fight for the $22 million prize pool is on.

Viewers from around the world will be tuning into live streams of the tournament, so it is imperative that the live streams replicate the excitement and intensity of attending the live event. Therefore, passionate and interesting commentators and streamers are a must for broadcasting the show.

Enter Gabriel ‘Lyrical’ Cruz. Gabriel is an English language Dota 2 caster from the United States, and this will be his first time ever working at a TI event. To say he is excited is an understatement.

Iain Fenton, Journalist for CompareLotto got the chance to chat with Lyrical in a pre-TI interview, and discuss how excited he is to be working on one of the biggest tournaments in eSports history, who he thinks will take home the grand prize, and even whether or not eSports can sustain its current level of popularity.

Iain Fenton: Firstly, how excited are you about TI7?

Lyrical: "I'm incredibly excited for TI7! It still doesn't seem real to me that I was invited and I have a feeling it won't until I am actually at the event and working it. But even if I wasn't invited TI is an incredibly special time of the year. I wrote a blog about this last year when I attended as a guest but for that week of the main event Key Arena and the surrounding area becomes like a Dota 2 amusement park. It's gives you a feeling of community like a big ol' bubble was placed over the area and everyone inside of it shares your interests. Not a very common thing for a gamer, but it's a huge part of what makes TI special."

IF: So the prize money this year is the largest for any sports tournament ever. How have Dota 2 and its eSports scene evolved from last year?

L: It's tough to say for me with regards to eSports as a whole. I don't keep as close of an eye on them except for the headlines. As far as Dota 2 is concerned there have been pretty monumental changes. In the casual gamer's experience we have had patch 7.00 come out, which fundamentally changed so many parts of the game. Dropping down to two majors and now the news that there will be a minor’s system implemented has altered and will continue to alter team’s choice of tournaments to attend.

The decrease in the number of majors has also opened the door for more third party tournaments to enter the scene. Overall the message from Valve seems to be the same that it was 2 years ago when we got Dota 2 Reborn, they want the game and the scene to thrive and they want that to happen via community feedback and iteration.

IF: Do you think Dota 2 has now caught up to League of Legends in terms of popularity?

L: "I don't know, I think comparing Dota and League is really tough because there are just so many different factors to consider. Popularity is sort of a tough word to compare the two as well.

I'll admit I'm not the most well versed in LoL's player base, but I know that Dota 2 has some of the most fickle players. I remember a few different articles that were released comparing popular games' fan bases and their other gaming habits, and Dota had one of the few groups of fans who basically didn't play any other games.

Also comparing the fan contribution to each game's respective prize pool... Worlds last year received 3 million if I am not mistaken, whereas Dota received around 19 million. There are other factors that might play into this, but I would guess Dota has more die-hard fans, whereas LoL has the higher player base on aggregate."

IF: What audience numbers do you expect at the event? And how many do you think will be watching online?

L: "I'm never really sure with this. I think it depends a lot on the teams that get through. The venue will be sold out; it always is, but there will be a lot of people watching on the jumbotrons outside as well so probably we will get to around 20-22 thousand live, maybe more.

Online viewership -- no idea."

IF: What will be your main role in the event?

L: "I'll be doing play-by-play casting."

IF: How do you get yourself ready to commentate/stream? Is it very natural for you or do you take the time out to do a lot of preparation beforehand?

L: "Streaming on my own channel is much more casual, so my only prep is getting giant vessels of coffee and water. Prepping for an event or a cast is an entirely different manner. I usually do practice casts of previous events either on my channel or off air with a local recording, then I'll listen back and take notes on things I want to change.

For team prep I've got a few different notebooks with a page or two per player and coach that lists recent heroes, former teams, former teammates, recent pub heroes played, and usually one or two notes that I find interesting in my research.

Besides that, just playing Dota whenever I get a chance. Since the game is so complex and there are an almost limitless variety of ways to play different heroes, you just need to feel out what’s good by playing it.

IF: How competitive do you think it is going to be this year? Is there a standout team already?

L: "This year is going to be incredibly competitive. All of the top teams now are getting to the stage where the differences in mechanical skill are negligible. It has felt for a while now that what determines success is team chemistry and decision-making in-game.

With that said, if you have absurd talent AND chemistry you will probably take the win and that's why I'm picking VP. If you look at what they did at The Summit picking a different hero EVERY game until the finals that’s got to give you some insane confidence. Plus, they are hungry for it. I think the other team that I expect to see in the finals with them is EG and they are a really similar story of talent and chemistry."

IF: The prize for first place is obviously phenomenal. Did you ever think eSports would become this big? Can it sustain this level?

L: "I never thought eSports would become this big mostly because I didn't imagine the connective power of the internet. I think most gamers to some extent feel like, or at least when I was growing up felt like, they were on the outside looking in. To see that in fact that's not the case and instead we have built a community that supports each other is amazing and I don't think it's going anywhere.

Whether it is Dota or some other game, I think it's here to stay.

IF: What kind of mentality does a champion Dota 2 player need? How important is it that the team get on with each other 100%? Do you think problems can arise if a team is made up of different nationalities?

L: "I think there have been a lot of different models for successful teams. Some run well with absolute compliance and a captain with an iron fist. Others take a holistic approach where everyone speaks their minds. Really it depends on the players to buy into whatever system is in place.

To me the most important quality a Dota 2 champion needs is the ability to build consensus and move on from whatever happened before be in the now and play your best. I don't think nationality has anything to do with team success at all. OG has a French coach and players from Denmark, Australia, Sweden, Finland, Israel -- and they have been the most successful Dota 2 team of the last year."

IF: Who are you backing to win? And who would you say is the dark horses to take the title? What kind of glory awaits the winning team?

L: "Like I said before, I'm taking VP as the winners. I don't have a dark horse to take the title. I think one of the OG, VP, EG, Liquid, Newbee will for sure win it, and none of those teams can really be classified as a dark horse. I will take LFY to go further than most of the public would expect -- I think that team is quite good.

As far as glory, it's TI and the Aegis -- there isn't a bigger trophy in eSports."

I'd like to thank Lyrical for taking the time to chat with me. To get a deeper look at his casting and Dota 2 play, check out his Twitch channel or follow him on Twitter @LyricalDota.

Be sure to check back with GameSkinny for more news about the Dota 2 TI7 as it gets underway!

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DreamHack Atlanta: Dota 2 DreamLeague Season 7 Finals Recap https://www.gameskinny.com/9msge/dreamhack-atlanta-dota-2-dreamleague-season-7-finals-recap https://www.gameskinny.com/9msge/dreamhack-atlanta-dota-2-dreamleague-season-7-finals-recap Mon, 24 Jul 2017 11:25:53 -0400 Rothalack

DreamLeague Season 7 started all the way back in April and culminated Saturday at the Georgia World Congress Center with DreamHack Atlanta. Being so close to TI7, we got to see a little bit more of what these teams are worth before they go for the biggest prize pool in eSports.

Vega Squadron, not set to attend TI7, played better than anyone had expected. The past few months they haven't been looking all that strong -- and really the entire CIS region has been on the low recently. But Vega proved over the weekend there are still some strong teams and players left in the CIS region. Though they could not advance past fourth place, they didn't make it easy on their opponents.

This little gem had a lot to do with the loss. MinD_ctrl out of control:

Team Secret, who went out in third place, barely scraped by Vega after going down 1-0 before sweeping back to win the Lower Bracket best of 3. Team Secret may have been holding back slightly for this tournament, perhaps saving a few strats for TI7.

There was discussion on the panel about this, and it seemed to be a split between analysts on whether or not teams actually hold back during smaller tournaments just before TI. We can never be sure, but I bet there's at least something that Secret wants to keep up their sleeve. Everyone has a few pocket strats they are sitting on just for the right match.

Epic Finals: Team ODD vs. Team Liquid

This Finals Best of 5 match was everything you'd ever want from a grand finals. It ran for all 5 games, and none of them were a bore. Planet Odd came out really strong, starting the set with 2 wins. This backed Liquid into a corner where they needed to win the next 3 games straight to win the series.

Of course, Liquid being Liquid, they did it. It was a struggle but they pulled it off. Liquid got their 3 game streak started with a Huskar pick.

The Face of a Man Who Just Got Huskar'dThe face of a man who just got Huskar'd. Courtesy of /u/guysimreallybad.

 

And then Liquid did it again with a Miracle- Anti-Mage. A 1k GPM Anti-Mage.

In Game 5, Planet Odd tried to fight back with an Anti-Mage of their own once again, but it did not have the same impact as a Miracle- Anti-Mage. They also went in with the classic W33 Ranger, which did not have the impact needed to win them the final game.

To give you an idea of just how intense this grand finals was, I give you ODPixel going ham:

This clip guarantees two things -- that W33 is one of the very best mids in the world, and that ODPixel is one of the best casters in Dota, if not one of the best casters of any game.

For the upcoming TI7, DreamLeague Season 7 has shown us that Team Liquid is going in very strong. Team Secret is not weak by any stretch, but maybe not quite on par with Liquid.

To brighten everyone's day, Waka Flocka Flame came by to chat during the finals day panels. He gave us a great reminder of just how nerdy we are in the Dota scene, which I really enjoyed.

And last but not least, the best moment of the entire tournament, Reso is best carry!

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A Complete Guide to DreamHack Atlanta: Events, Schedules & Where to Watch https://www.gameskinny.com/pm7y2/a-complete-guide-to-dreamhack-atlanta-events-schedules-where-to-watch https://www.gameskinny.com/pm7y2/a-complete-guide-to-dreamhack-atlanta-events-schedules-where-to-watch Fri, 21 Jul 2017 10:43:42 -0400 Lydia M

2016 was the inaugural year for DreamHack in the States, with the first breaking ground in Austin, Texas. And while the American counterpart to the largest digital festival in the world probably won't be as extreme, you're bound to find something you enjoy as DreamHack sets its sights on Atlanta, Georgia this weekend.

Big-name eSports tournaments,  cosplay contests, musical performances, and so much more will be at DreamHack: Atlanta. And below, we've got your full schedule for all major events throughout the weekend.

eSports Tournaments

CS:GO DreamHack Astro Open
  • Prize Pool: $100,000
  • Teams:
    • Team EnvyUs
    • Heroic
    • Hellraisers
    • Misfits
    • NRG
    • Godsent
    • Binary Dragons
    • Renegades

You'll be able to watch this tournament on the CS:GO DreamHack Twitch channel. The match schedule is as follows: 

  • Friday, July 21:
    • 12:40 PM EDT - Pre-Show
    • 1:00 PM EDT - First Match (Group Stages)
  • Saturday, July 22:
    • 10:00 AM EDT - Groups Elimination Matches
  • Sunday, July 23:
    • 10:00 AM EDT - Semi-Finals
    • 5:00 PM EDT - Grand Final
H1Z1 Elite Series - Team Event
  • Prize Pool: $150,000
  • Teams: 
    • Counter Logic Gaming
    • Obey Alliance
    • Denial eSports
    • World Best Gaming
    • Luminosity Gaming
    • + 7 teams from onsite qualifiers

You'll be able to watch this tournament on the official H1Z1 Twitch channel. The match schedule is as follows: 

  • Saturday, July 22:
    • 2:00 PM EDT - Team Qualifiers
  • Sunday, July 23:
    • 12:00 PM EDT - Team Tournament Finals
H1Z1 Elite Series - Solo Event
  • Prize Pool: $100,000
  • Players: 
    • Radek
    • Gorany
    • Gasrunner
    • H00Wy
    • Flamehopp
    • Pineaqples
    • Inboxes
    • Splintexify
    • VivaLaBAD
    • Sweetdrear
    • AladdinLTD
    • Avdren
    • Jordyx3
    • Yt2taps
    • Illuos1iion
    • Bom1n
    • Ninja
    • + top 40 players from onsite qualifiers

You'll also be able to watch this tournament on the official H1Z1 Twitch channel. The match schedule is as follows:

  • Friday, July 21:
    • 2:00 PM EDT - Solo Qualifiers
  • Saturday, July 22:
    • 9:30 PM EDT - Solo Tournament
Halo Champions Series Pro League Summer 2017 Finals
  • Prize Pool: $200,000
  • Teams:
    • North America
      • Splyce
      • Optic Gaming
      • Team Liquid
      • Evil Geniuses
      • Luminosity
      • Team EnvyUs
    • Europe
      • Vexed Gaming
      • Supremacy
      • Invictus
      • Team Infused
      • + Six teams from Open Bracket

You'll be able to watch this tournament on the official Halo Twitch channel. The match schedule is as follows: 

  • Friday, July 21:
    • 12:00 PM EDT - Open Bracket
  • Saturday, July 22:
    • 10:00 AM EDT - Open Bracket + Championship Bracket
  • Sunday, July 23:
    • 12:20 PM - Championship Bracket
Dota 2 DreamLeague Season 7 Playoffs
  • Prize Pool: $175,000
  • Teams: 
    • Team Secret
    • Team Liquid
    • Vega Squadron
    • Planet Odd

You'll be able to watch this tournament on the official Dreamleague Twitch channel. The match schedule is as follows: 

  • Saturday, July 22:
    • 11:00 AM EDT - Upper Bracket
  • Sunday, July 23:
    • 12:00 PM EDT - Lower Bracket Final
    • 4:15 PM EDT - Grand Final
Rocket League DreamHack Championship
  • Prize Pool: $50,000
  • Teams: Open registration - 32 teams max

You'll be able to watch this tournament on the official DreamHack Rocket League Twitch channel. The match schedule is as follows: 

  • Friday, July 21:
    • 12:00 PM EDT - Day 1 Matches
  • Saturday, July 22:
    • 12:00 PM EDT - Day 2 Matches
  • Sunday, July 23:
    • 11:00 AM EDT - Quarter Finals
    • 4:00 PM EDT - Semi Finals
    • 6:30 PM EDT - Grand Finals

DreamHack Hearthstone Grand Prix

  • Prize Pool: $26,500
  • Players: Open Registration

You'll be able to watch this tournament on the official DreamHack Hearthstone Twitch channel. The match schedule is as follows:

  • Friday, July 21:
    • 11:00 AM EDT - Rounds Begin
  • Saturday, July 22:
    • 11:00 AM EDT - Rounds Continue
    • 5:15 PM EDT - Round of 16
  • Sunday, July 23:
    • 11:15 AM EDT - Round of 8
    • 5:15: PM EDT - Grand Final
DreamHack Super Smash Bros for Wii U Tournament
  • Prize Pool: $10,000
  • Players: Open Registration

You'll be able to watch this tournament on the official DreamHack Smash Twitch channel. The match schedule is as follows:

  • Friday, July 21:
    • 2:00 PM EDT - Doubles
  • Saturday, July 22:
    • 10:00 AM EDT - Single Pools
  • Sunday, July 23:
    • 10:00 AM EDT - Top 8, Semi Finals, and Finals
Dreamhack Super Smash Bros Melee Tournament
  • Prize Pool: $10,000
  • Players: Open Registration

You'll be able to watch this tournament on the official DreamHack Smash Twitch channel. The match schedule is as follows:

  • Friday, July 21:
    • 2:00 PM EDT - Doubles
  • Saturday, July 22:
    • 10:00 AM EDT - Singles Pools
  • Sunday, July 23:
    • 10:00 AM EDT - Top 8, Semi Finals, and Finals

Other professional eSports events will also be running on the fighting game circuit. The schedule of games for fighter fans includes Tekken 7, Street Fighter V, and Injustice 2.

Collegiate AVGL eSports Matches

In addition to professional eSports, DreamHack will be hosting some tournaments at the collegiate level, courtesy of the American Video Game League (AVGL). Several universities will be facing off against each other in big-name games like League of Legends and Overwatch

All collegiate matches will be broadcast on the main DreamHack Twitch Channel. The tournaments are as follows:

League of Legends
  • Friday, July 21
    • 10:30 AM EDT - University of Georgia v. Georgia Tech
    • 1:00 PM EDT - Georgia Southern v. Georgia State
    • 3:00 PM EDT - University of Mississippi v. Clemson
Overwatch
  • Saturday, July 22
    • 10:30 AM EDT: University of Mississippi v. Clemson
    • 12:30 PM EDT: UNCC v. NC State
    • 2:30 PM EDT: Georgia State v. University of Georgia

Other DreamHack Events

Despite mostly being known for the holding the biggest eSports tournaments in the world, DreamHack will also be home to the biggest PC LAN party ever, cosplay contests, a dedicated tabletop area, virtual reality, and so much more. There will also be an expo filled with exhibitors like Astro Gaming, Meta Threads, Hyper X, Intel, Oculus Rift, and so much more.

Cosplay Contest

There are three "tiers" of contests with different skill levels. Each have cash and trophy prizes for the top three participants. The schedule is as follows:

  • Saturday, July 22:
    • 12:00 - 3:00 PM EDT -- Pre-Judging
    • 6:00 - 7:45 PM EDT -- Main Show
    • 7:45 - 8:00 PM EDT -- Awards
Live Music

Rapper Waka Flocka Flame will also be making an appearance to put on a concert for DreamHack attendees on Friday, July 21 at 10:30 PM EDT.

Whether you're there for the eSports tournaments, cosplay contests, shopping for the latest in gamer gear, or all of the above, you're certain to find your niche at DreamHack Atlanta. As DreamHack has successfully extended to three American states this year, there's a good chance it will continue to expand in the coming years.

It's not too late to attend! Tickets are still available for as low as $20 on the DreamHack website.

Stay tuned to GameSkinny for eSports coverage and cosplay roundups from the show as it runs over the weekend. Comment below if you'll be at the show yourself!

]]>
Dota 2: What Is Behavior Score and How to Check It https://www.gameskinny.com/cf1jk/dota-2-what-is-behavior-score-and-how-to-check-it https://www.gameskinny.com/cf1jk/dota-2-what-is-behavior-score-and-how-to-check-it Mon, 17 Jul 2017 11:05:35 -0400 stratataisen

Dota 2 is a free-to-play MOBA that was developed and published by Valve Corporation. It is the stand-alone sequel to Defense of the Ancients (DotA), a community-created mod for Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos and its expansion pack, The Frozen Throne. The development of Dota 2 began back in 2009 when IceFrog, the lead designer of the original DotA mod, was hired by Valve to create a more up-to-date version of the game.

In Dota 2, there's a stat called the "behavior score" that basically evaluates what sort of player you are. And in this short guide, we're going to break down what this score indicates and how you can check it for yourself. 

What is the Behavior Score in Dota 2?

The behavior score is pretty much what it sounds like -- it's a score for your behavior in the game. It's a lot like those grades you received for your behavior in preschool or elementary school -- N for Naughty, G for Great, or something along those lines. It's the same concept here.

If you are a mean or toxic player, you’ll have a low behavior score. If you’re a nice and friendly player you’ll have a high behavior score. The max behavior score is 10,000. No one knows precisely how the game calculates this score, but more than likely it has something to do with commends and reports.

Valve uses this behavior score to match players together when they queue up for games. So if you’re determined to be a toxic player have a low behavior score, you’ll be grouped up with similar people.

How to Find Your Behavior Score in Dota 2

Finding your behavior score requires having the console enabled if it isn't already. To do this, you'll need to:

  1. Open your Steam Library
  2. Right-click on Dota 2
  3. Right-click on Properties
  4. Click Set Launch Options
  5. Type “-console” (without the quotations)
  6. Click OK

Once you have the console up and running, you need to use a specific command within it in order to see your exact behavior score, as there's no place in the game's base UI to find it. Here are the steps you need to follow:  

  1. Start up Dota 2
  2. Open console (the default key for this is “\”)
  3. Type “developer 1” and press Enter
  4. Type “dota_game_account_debug”
  5. Look for “playerbehavor_score_last_report: #####”

Hope this is helpful for you! What's your behavior score in Dota 2? Got any tips for raising a low behavior score? Let us know down in the comments! And stay tuned for more Dota 2 guides here on GameSkinny.

]]>
Bored of League of Legends? Here Are 5 Similar Games You'll Love https://www.gameskinny.com/re29v/bored-of-league-of-legends-here-are-5-similar-games-youll-love https://www.gameskinny.com/re29v/bored-of-league-of-legends-here-are-5-similar-games-youll-love Thu, 29 Jun 2017 12:55:37 -0400 RichardHeimer_3915

It's no secret that League of Legends is a highly popular game with more than 100 million monthly active players. But sometimes, everyone needs a break.

As good as League of Legends might be, sometimes it's good to play some other games. Maybe you've lost a few games in a row or can't bear to be up against another smurf account player. Whatever the reason, alt-F4 LoL and download some of these awesome games!

Games Like League of Legends

DOTA 2

If you've been playing League of Legends for a while, chances are you've heard of DOTA 2 at some point. Also known as Defense of the Ancients, DOTA is the original MOBA that spawned an entire genre of games -- including League of Legends.

The original DOTA might be very dated by this point, but DOTA 2 gives the franchise that modern touch. Unlike LoL, DOTA 2 is often considered a lot harder due to its advanced mechanics. In the game, players have the ability to "deny" minions to their enemies, meaning enemies don't receive gold and their life lane is much more difficult. With quality graphics, smooth gameplay, and lots of champions to choose from, DOTA 2 is a great alternative to LoL

SMITE

If you fancy something a bit different from League of Legends, then why not try SMITE? Instead of your usual birds-eye view of the battlefield, SMITE allows you to get a much closer look at the action. With it's unique behind the shoulder camera angle. you'll get to experience the fierce battle from the eyes of your champion.

Unlike LoL, SMITE gives players a blind spot due to the 3rd person view. This means players can take advantage of other players who are too focused on killing minions. This field of view unlocks a whole range of new tactics for players, including stealth attacks and ambushes. With plenty of champions to choose from and a large community, SMITE might be the new game you're looking for.

Paragon

Similar to SMITE, Paragon is another MOBA that uses the same third-person, over-the-shoulder view. Unlike SMITE, however, the game is fairly new and is still in open beta. With just a few playable champions to choose from, the game is still in its early stages.

Featuring graphics from the Unreal engine, the game is most certainly a thing of beauty. But that's not all: with its close-up of the battlefield, you'll experience much fiercer battles and a lot more action. One of the most unique things about Paragon is the cards available in game. During matches, you gain amber, which can be used to purchase cards back at your base. By using these cards, you can follow unique and complex decks that offer a whole new level of customizability. If you want to become part of the community before the game becomes big, then now is the perfect time.

Heroes of the Storm

Developed by the creators of big titles such as Overwatch, World of Warcraft, and Hearthstone, Heroes of the Storm is one of the newest titles from the developers at Blizzard. Featuring plenty of characters from the Blizzard universe, the game incorporates champions from StarCraft and Overwatch into an awesome MOBA mash up. 

If MOBAs have become too serious for you, then this game is perfect to restore the balance. No one in the game takes it seriously, and it's all good fun. Compared to League of Legends, Heroes of the Storm has an impressive 13 maps to choose from. Each map varies in size, lane separation and jungle encampments which helps make the game even more interesting. 

If you're sick to death gritting your teeth while waiting to re-spawn then Heroes of the Storm will be a breath of fresh air.

Awesomenauts

If you're sick of 3D games and want something a bit hipper, then Awesomenauts is the perfect game for you. With an 88% rating on Steam, we can only say good things about this game. Due to the simplicity of the game, Awesomenauts is really the only MOBA you can play on consoles. The lack of 3D makes using a controller possible and opens up a whole new genre to console gamers.

Similar to the old school Worms games, this fast-paced 2D platformer is full of action and excitement. With more 20 champions to choose from and lots of ways to outsmart your opponents, you definitely won't miss League of Legends at all. In fact, you could go as far to say this is an "awesome" replacement.

---

As you can see from our list, there are plenty of excellent alternatives to League of Legends. No matter if you're looking for something completely new such as Paragon or another MOBA with a competitive ranking system, these games will make you forget LoL exists as you're transported into a new online arena.

With countless gaming communities out there, you'll never have to worry about not having any friends to play with. Head on over to their individual Reddit threads or post on their official forums, there are plenty of people who are up for a match.

Now you know five League of Legends alternatives, what are you waiting for? Get out there and give them a try!

]]>
The Best Rick and Morty Mods For All Your Favorite Games https://www.gameskinny.com/g3lks/the-best-rick-and-morty-mods-for-all-your-favorite-games https://www.gameskinny.com/g3lks/the-best-rick-and-morty-mods-for-all-your-favorite-games Tue, 18 Apr 2017 18:04:09 -0400 Ty Arthur

[{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/b/a/c/backcov-aaa83.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/b/a/c/backcov-aaa83.jpg","type":"slide","id":"156282","description":"

What did you think of these fun Rick And Morty mods, and have you discovered any we missed that should be added? Let us known in the comments section below!

\n

For a little extra fun, check out some amazing scenes from the show re-created in Fallout 4, including the poignant exodus of the many Mortys, with one evil Morty amongst them.

\n

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/g/m/o/gmod1-c8151.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/g/m/o/gmod1-c8151.jpg","type":"slide","id":"156289","description":"

Garry's Mod

\n
Rick, Morty, and Meeseeks Models
\n

Get It Here!

\n

This physics sandbox game now has some new model additions, including Rick Sanchez, Morty, and even Mr. Meeseeks.

\n

If you scroll through the other Steam Workshop content available from the same user, you'll even find some giant "show me what you got" heads to populate the sky!

\n

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/a/n/n/announcer-9d0fe.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/a/n/n/announcer-9d0fe.jpg","type":"slide","id":"156285","description":"

Dota 2 and Team Fortress 2

\n
Rick And Morty Announcer Packs
\n\n

Considering half the draw of the show is just listening to Rick's insanity and Morty's not-so-sure-about-this responses, it was only a matter of time before somebody made announcer packs for various online games. 

\n

Justin Roiland, the voice of both characters, apparently actually did these lines originally for Dota 2, and someone then imported them all over to Team Fortress.

\n

With Season 3 coming soon, I wouldn't be surprised to see more games doing this. Adult Swim Games is also currently working on a Mr. Meeseeks courier for the Dota 2 Steam Workshop.

\n

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/r/m/o/rmorty2-75432.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/r/m/o/rmorty2-75432.jpg","type":"slide","id":"156286","description":"

No Man's Sky

\n
Icons And Sounds
\n

Get It Here!

\n

This one doesn't radically change the game -- just adds a new loading screen and changes a few icons and sound effects to match the show -- but expect a lot more to come in the months ahead. I'd bet we'll see a planet where everything is on the cob before too long...

\n

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/r/i/c/ricksportalgun-eb23c.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/r/i/c/ricksportalgun-eb23c.jpg","type":"slide","id":"156288","description":"

Fallout 4

\n
Rick's Portal Gun
\n

Get It Here!

\n

Before anybody gets too excited -- no, this one doesn't let you teleport from location to location or add in some Portal-style physics system. That would have been rad, but alas, its not to be (yet).

\n

What this mod does do is re-skin an alien blaster to look just like Rick Sanchez's portal gun, and that's pretty cool. I know what I'll be vaporizing robots and raiders with this week.

\n

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/f/a/l/fall-4e1a4.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/f/a/l/fall-4e1a4.png","type":"slide","id":"156287","description":"

Fallout 4

\n
Overhaul Mod
\n

Get It Here!

\n

This nifty little mod swaps out the intro menu screen with the Rick And Morty show intro and gets rid of one aspect of Fallout 4 that added absolutely nothing: the voiced main character.

\n

Rather than hearing "blah, blah, blah" for the millionth time while skipping text, the mod replaces everything the Sole Survivor says with random Rick Sanchez lines...and most of it hilariously fits whatever the situation at hand happens to be.

\n

And those ones that don't fit...well, those ones are even more hilarious. Who doesn't want to hear "Rubber baby buggy bumpers!!!!" at random times while playing Fallout 4?

\n

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/c/a/scaryterr-4fb4d.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/c/a/scaryterr-4fb4d.jpg","type":"slide","id":"156284","description":"

Skyrim

\n
Scary Terry and Mr. Meeseeks
\n

Get It Here!

\n

Who knew you needed Scary Terry in your Skyrim playthrough? This modder, that's who. As expected, he says one particular word more often than any other. As a bonus, gold coins are now renamed to shmeckles, as they should be.

\n

The same modder has had videos up for going on three years now, showing off a Mr. Meeseeks box that spawns tons of Meeseeks out to help you (check one out below). But unfortunately that mod isn't actually available yet.

\n

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/g/t/a/gta5-4541d.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/g/t/a/gta5-4541d.jpg","type":"slide","id":"156283","description":"

Grand Theft Auto V

\n
Rick Sanchez Add-On
\n

Get It Here!

\n

I'm going to confess something that may not endear me to the GTA fanbase: I didn't actually really like part V.

\n

The heist system was interesting, and of course there's the absurd online experience that's filled to the brim with ludicrously amazing nonsense you won't see anywhere else. But I actively hated the characters this time around. A rich suburban white dude who turns to crime because he's bored with his perfect life and has annoying kids doesn't quite match the Eastern European whirlwind of destruction that was Nico Bellic.

\n

That being said, GTA V has seen some killer mods that give the game extended life and take it in new directions -- from a stunningly beautiful fan graphics upgrade to this crazy mod that lets you fly around in Rick Sanchez's spaceship and fills the game world with a whole council full of Ricks and their attendant Mortys.

\n

Yep, there's catch phrases galore, as well a rendition of "Get Schwifty." Just um, don't go to the strip club when you've got everything changed to a Rick. You don't want to have to scrub your eyes.

\n

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/c/o/v/cov1-221f4.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/c/o/v/cov1-221f4.jpg","type":"slide","id":"156281","description":"

When it seemed like season 3 would never arrive and was lost somewhere out in the multiverse, the fires of Rick And Morty mania were re-stoked on April Fools.

\n

The crazy folks from Adult Swim decided to play the upcoming first episode on loop for 24 hours with the message "there, you can now stop bugging us" prominently displayed at the bottom. As I predicted back when the Pocket Mortys winter update arrived, we saw several new Mortys from the game appear on the show (did everybody catch Hammer Morty meeting his demise?).

\n

The rest of the season won't arrive until this summer, but you don't have to wait that long for a super schwifty fix of new darkly humorous sci-fi shenanigans. 

\n

Various characters and voices from the show have collided with a wide range of games thanks to the glorious modding community, and today we're rounding up the best of 'em currently available. And awaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay we go...

"}]]]>
Professional Video Gaming - Is It a Real Sport? https://www.gameskinny.com/m4tiv/professional-video-gaming-is-it-a-real-sport https://www.gameskinny.com/m4tiv/professional-video-gaming-is-it-a-real-sport Tue, 11 Apr 2017 08:00:01 -0400 Karthik Krishnan

While there’s no formal education offered to become a pro gamer, many people have honed their skills in the various categories of games to make sustaining careers out of them.

For the longest time video games were viewed as massive time-wasters that encouraged laziness and anti-human interaction. In many movies, the stuck-up anti-social teenager who could not talk to girls was only good at video gaming. This may not necessarily be the case as gamers are normal human beings with the exception that they have a special interest for computer games, just like a fashion enthusiast would love to wear glow necklaces. Esports may be unconventional but it’s here to stay.

Here are some of the features that make professional gaming worthy of being called a real sport:

It takes skill and practice

esports, gamer, gamergirls

In the same manner in which baseball requires constant hitting and missing, so does video gaming demand long man-hours of practice. To be a professional player one has to put time aside to understand the dynamics of the game, the characters, the scoring and the rules of play.

A professional gamer can practice with robots or artificial intelligence just to get a feel of the controls and the game user interface. Afterward, he/she can advance to playing with friends for a more social setup and to learn the aspect of teamwork.

Tournaments and training organized

esports, arena, stage

Just like soccer, baseball, and rugby, pro gaming has attracted a lot of attention from both players and fans across the world. In 2015 alone the global esports audience was estimated to be 226 million people. This rapid growth of interest in video games led to the creation of online tournaments starting 2000. As the sport became more competitive a global championship was put in place where a 16-team participates for a month. As many as 40,000 fans filled the Seoul World Cup stadium in 2014 to watch a live League of Legends game. Some of the major tournament names are the World Cyber Games,  North American Major League Gaming league, Electronic Sports World Cup, and the World e-Sports Games hosted in China.

Video gaming requires intense private/home practice but this may not be enough to prepare one for a competition. It is in this regard that various institutions made by game developers have come up to offer professional training on a list of games. An example is the Team We Training center in China.

Pro gaming pays

dota 2, character, selection

Shooting hextech gunblades from behind a computer may seem like a lazy way of passing an afternoon but it pays the bills for thousands of people out there. By 2016 Dota 2 had awarded a total of 86 million dollars to different players over 632 tournaments organized. Lee ‘Faker’ Sang-Hyeok is one such player who bagged a cool 1 million dollars after winning a League of Legends game. Gaming companies also create employment opportunities, therefore, paying salaries for a huge population of people.

Wrap up

By definition, sports is an activity that calls for skill and/or physical exertion whereby one person or a team compete against an opponent for the sake of entertainment. If you ask me, video games check all the boxes in this regard. Not only does it need top notch skills it's rather entertaining as well and pays well too.

Video gaming as a ‘real’ sport may be controversial but it has a lot of perks that earn it the title -- not to mention esports competitors are treated as athletes for the sake of travel.

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3 Reasons Budding Game Designers Should Dig Into Dota 2's Map Editor https://www.gameskinny.com/ag23f/3-reasons-budding-game-designers-should-dig-into-dota-2s-map-editor https://www.gameskinny.com/ag23f/3-reasons-budding-game-designers-should-dig-into-dota-2s-map-editor Tue, 21 Feb 2017 08:00:01 -0500 Sergey_3847

Video games are not only fun to play, but also fun to make. Except when you're first starting out -- because it seems scary how much knowledge you must accumulate in order to make your first steps as a game dev. But if you're willing to get creative, there are other ways to learn game design that are considerably more enjoyable than trudging through piles of tutorials. 

If learning code is hard for you, then the best way to enter the world of game design is through in-game map editors. So many games have them, including Skyrim, Crysis, Counter-Strike, and more. But if you're an aspiring developer, then the one you should really be looking at is the Dota 2 map editor.

This is not just some random level generator, but a tool that can open the gates to professional game development for you. Here's why it's such a powerful way to learn.

You will learn how to design levels professionally

There are many ways you can start learning level design. Lots of people learn through creating modifications for their favorite games, but that's not always the best starting point. Creating maps in a top-tier MOBA game like Dota 2 allows you to really feel what it takes to design your first levels.

There aren’t that many great offers on the game market, but the one from Valve is truly intriguing. So, if you really want to enter the game dev, now’s the time!

All you need is to install Dota 2, if you still don’t have it, and add a free Dota "Workshop Tools" DLC to the install queue. It includes a whole package for creating, editing and scripting custom maps in Dota 2. The level editor is called Hammer and is very simple to use, which is great for those who only start designing levels.

The Hammer manual is simple and intuitive, so you will easily start creating your first custom maps for Dota 2. The results of your level design in Hammer Editor can be included in your future resume, if you are planning to apply for a job in game dev.

Make it easy for yourself and begin with a simple solo map, and later you can create full-fledged games within Dota 2, such as Roshpit Champions or Warchasers.

You will have a direct access to Source 2

You may have heard that Dota 2 has been recently transferred to Valve’s own Source 2 graphics engine. This is a huge step forward for everyone involved in the development of the game, including third-party developers. Here’s what Gabe Newell had to say about Source 2 in his recent AMA at Reddit:

“We are continuing to use Source 2 as our primary game development environment. Aside from moving Dota 2 to the engine recently, we are using it as the foundation of some unannounced products. We would like to have everyone working on games here at Valve to eventually be using the same engine. We also intend to continue to make the Source 2 engine work available to the broad developer community as we go, and to make it available free of charge.”

This is amazing news for all aspiring game developers! Now with this announcement anyone who wants to create content for Dota 2 will have a direct experience of working with the Source 2 graphics engine. With this kind of knowledge your qualification will be of highest priority and you can be confident that entering the game dev community will be easier than ever before.

Later you can start making your own games on Source 2 and Valve will be happy to see your games in their top lists. They really, really want people to use the same engine for all their projects, and they’re welcoming everybody who will follow their call.

You will start making real money

If the two reasons above are not enough to make you pursue the goal of making content for Dota 2 on a new Source 2 engine, then maybe this third reason will give you some food for thought. It may sound trivial, but money is always a good reason to start doing something in your life.

Valve fully supports their third-party developers -- it lets them receive payments for custom game passes and even shares a few percents on top. If you want to know more about the Valve reward system, then check out this official FAQ.

This is a really great deal, since right now there aren’t that many custom games with passes in Dota 2. This means that the competition is very low and you can enter this market with no drawbacks at all. There is only one condition -- your mods should be really good.

Hopefully, this information was useful to you. There aren’t that many great offers on the game market, but the one from Valve is truly intriguing. So, if you really want to enter the game dev, now’s the time!

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Twitch Selling Games Is the No-Brainer Idea No One Thought About https://www.gameskinny.com/zcwgm/twitch-selling-games-is-the-no-brainer-idea-no-one-thought-about https://www.gameskinny.com/zcwgm/twitch-selling-games-is-the-no-brainer-idea-no-one-thought-about Tue, 28 Feb 2017 08:00:01 -0500 Rob Kershaw

If you think about it, the recent announcement of Twitch selling games makes perfect sense. With over 1.5 million streamers being watched by hundreds of millions of viewers per month, there is an audience ripe for pitching games to -- and who better to advertise titles than other gamers?

The only real surprise is that this move took so long to happen.

Twitch viewers can now buy games from two different areas on the site -- the game's detail page and the channel page itself, with the purchase link tucked under the game being streamed. For partnered streamers, this offers another revenue stream -- 5% of all sales made via their channel will go into their pocket. Twitch will take a quarter of the proceeds and the rest will go to the game developer.

It's basically an all-round win for all concerned.

Gamers get paid to stream, and encouraged to improve their content in order to attract more visitors and potential buyers. Game creators get exposure of their game on Twitch as before, but now with the added benefit of an extra shop front tagged on -- and thus generating money. Viewers will have a quick link to purchase if they like what they see, and will be given a Twitch crate on top as a bonus. Finally, Twitch (and therefore their parent company Amazon) will obviously pull in 25% of everything sold.

It should also be noted that the games will be installed via accounts linked through Twitch, such as Uplay, rather than redeemed via separate keys. But like Steam, a separate launcher will keep buyers cocooned within the Twitchverse.

Why did it take so long for Amazon to implement this on Twitch?

There are a number of factors at play.

Firstly, this move puts them in direct competition with Steam, the behemoth of the PC digital download industry. This isn't something that Amazon were going to just roll out without thought or analysis. Furthermore, the service will be reliant on publishers signing up to allow this link between stream and shop, and since big names like EA have their own Origin service to sell titles, they are currently keeping away. Activision and Square Enix are also absent, though this may change in the future.

With Valve's absence, the likes of DOTA 2 and CS: Go will be off the table -- at least for now -- and League of Legends developer Riot Games has not signed up either, taking out three of the biggest streamed games on the platform. It will be interesting to see how Twitch addresses this.

Ethics may also be involved here. Amazon will have also considered how blurring the lines between game streaming and retail will actually affect Twitch. Now, the biggest streamers could potentially be incentivized to only play games from the publishers who are affiliated with Twitch, leading to a narrower breadth of game coverage -- remember Amazon Game Studios is around, and that Amazon does own Twitch. Publishers could try and influence streamers to play their games to the detriment of smaller titles, which in turn would be bad news for both smaller studios and viewers wanting to learn more about new, lesser known games. The move is yet another blow for physical retailers too, in a time where digital download sales now exceed boxed copies, and the number of game stores in towns and cities is dwindling.

Until we see exactly what is lined up in the coming weeks, it's impossible to say exactly what impact the changes will have on the way that both Twitch and its streamers operate. Whether Amazon will subsidize games sold through Twitch in order to compete with the frequency of Steam sales is another unknown, but gamers are savvy enough to shop around for the cheapest price and won't fork out fifty bucks on a game if they can get it for half the price outside of Twitch. However, it's a bold challenge to Valve's dominance of the marketplace, and one we'll be keeping a close eye on this spring.

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5 Resolutions Every Gamer Should Have in 2017 https://www.gameskinny.com/b7k1c/5-resolutions-every-gamer-should-have-in-2017 https://www.gameskinny.com/b7k1c/5-resolutions-every-gamer-should-have-in-2017 Tue, 20 Dec 2016 03:00:02 -0500 Justin Michael

As the year rounds to a close, I think about all of the exciting experiences I've had as a gamer in this past year. From the release of Fallout 4 to the recent campaign for the Nintendo Switch, this has been an exciting year in gaming for me. I also feel that now is the best time to make some goals on how to become a better gamer, going into 2017. So with that being said, let's take a look at 5 resolutions that not only I but other gamers should strive to have in 2017.

1. Play more games with friends

I'm a notoriously lone-wolf type of gamer. Even when I'd play something like Minecraft on a server with friends, I'd wander off in some random direction and start building my base away from everyone else.

It's not that I don't like playing games with others, it's just that I prefer to do things on my own for the most part. I've been getting better about it and so one of the things I'd like to work on this year is playing more multiplayer games with my friends.

While this doesn't mean that I'll stop playing single player games it does mean that I won't be playing them all the time. I still see them as a way to relax and unwind from those around me but I do think it's important to spend more time with my friends and family that are gamers.

2. Don't over-hype games

I feel like that is a big bad habit that most of us have and we have seen an extreme case of it this year in the form of No Man's Sky. I know that it can be hard to stifle our excitement for upcoming titles, especially if we've been waiting for years but we have to understand that games are big, hard to create, and prone to falling short of lofty expectations.

Even though there are a number of titles I'm anxiously awaiting, like Mount and Blade 2: Bannerlord for example, I'm not allowing myself to climb aboard the hype train and fluff it up to something that it won't be. It's alright to get excited about upcoming games but let's not do another NMS.

3. Get better at MOBAs

Full disclosure, I'm a Bronze 5 League of Legends player with a Platinum 4 roommate. It's not that I'm particularly bad at the game, it's that I'm a filthy casual and don't take the time to learn the strategy and mechanics going on behind the scenes to "git gud" at it.

My goal is to play more MOBAs this year and actually take the time to learn more about the items and mechanics. I'll likely only pick a small pool of champs to play and probably only play SMITE & League of Legends but my hope is to be a better player and enjoy being a team asset and not a feeder.

4. Actually finish a game or a demo

This is a bit less about being a gamer and more of a developer goal of mine for the year. This year alone I've started prototyping close to 8 different games and all of them are still in the prototyping stage for one reason or another.

To be fair, though, it took me a bit of tinkering before I settled on what engine I was primarily going to be making games in and, if you're interested, I wrote this article on it awhile back.

I guess in a general gamer sense it could be actually finishing the games that we start playing. I know that I personally have a pretty big back catalog of games I need to finish and most of the other gamers I know do too. This year will be the year that I finish projects instead of getting distracted and starting new ones.

5. Not just get games on Steam because they're on sale

Another thing that myself, and many of my gamer friends are guilty of is getting games on Steam either because they're on a massive sale or because they're bundled with games that we'd like. Of my current 240 game library, I haven't played 60 of the games that I own. And of the 180 games that I have played, 96 of them have been played for less than 12 hours.

With such a back catalog of games, I have plenty to keep me busy this coming year and my bank account with thank me for it.

I know that a lot of time I make resolutions, like most other people, and only stick with it for a few months if that. But this year I will really be putting in the extra effort to be a better gamer and to build better gaming habits.

What are some of your gamer resolutions for 2017? What's the one thing you wish to change the most? Let's talk about it in the comments below!

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