What Apex Legends can learn from Dota 2

Thu 25th Apr 2019 - 2:00am : Gaming

As the gaming world evolves, so do the gaming "hats" and cosmetics within the world. The level of detail that people can now customise their individual avatars or champions in the virtual world has now become on par with the level of realism of our reality itself. This may or may not be a good thing, but one can definitely spend hours at a time just merely customising their avatar in certain games such as Black Desert Online, and Blade and Soul, to name a few recent MMORPGs. 

In games such as the recent Battle Royale game, Apex Legends, the developers are essentially mimicking the recent marketing strategy of selling cosmetic items in Dota 2. Dota 2 is a game that is notorious for it's addictiveness as well as it's complexity in strategic potential. Somewhat akin to Apex legends in that you have a team of players, Dota 2 is a game that gains most of it's funding for it's tournaments through battle passes and tickets to watch these tournaments. While having an existent audience is a plus, Dota 2 is more developed in the esports scene than Apex Legends. This means that in order to compete, Apex needs something innovative to compete.

What Dota 2 does well from a gaming perspective is that the playable characters are not unlockable. They all come fully playable and without cosmetics. This is actually different from Apex legends, which takes on a more League of Legends-esque method of character acquisition. This may or may not prove to be a good thing, depending on how many total characters Apex legends decides to release once players reach a comfortable milestone in both population and playtimes. 

What can Apex Legend developers and designers learn from Dota 2, then? The design of the battle pass seems very much like Dota 2's level-up to unlock new hats and costumes. What Apex needs to add perhaps is just more characters or perhaps focus more on the balance of the game. Regardless of what the developers do, these two factors will definitely make the game refreshing and perhaps more fun to play. The inherent focus of most Dota 2 characters is that they each have their own special and powerful set of abilities. This is definitely what makes Apex Legends unique too. But there are only so many combinations of skillsets in a first person shooter type format, so after Apex reaches a good amount, they will have to move on to something else.

Perhaps the addition of a new map or even the added ability to use vehicles would provide an innovative dimension to Apex Legends. Regardless of what the developers do, I think that the addition of even a storyline behind the champions could prove to be a fruitful endeavor. Much like how Dota 2 offers custom-crafted seasonal event "mini-games"(search Year Beast or Frostvirus) Apex Legends could experiment with these types of things to spice up the player interest, and reap the benefits of a more engaged player pool. It would also provide a great incentive for streamers to stream the game as well. 




Kevin Liou

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