Are Free MOBA Games Worth Playing?


Today it seems that if you are a competitive gamer, the free MOBA games are not the way to go. I am talking about those mature gamers that have in mind a strategy that will win that person games. Unfortunately, free games such as Dota 2 or League of Legends, appealing as they may be, are not the games that you should be playing. You are probably wondering why.

Kids or children is the answer. Children do not have the money to pay for games in general. They are also censored by their parents quite a bit. This is especially true if you are a gamer in Asia. If you consider countries such as Thailand, Myanmar, Laos, Cambodia, Indonesia, and Philippines, which are all developing countries are part of Asia, more specifically South East Asia, then most children do not have enough money to purchase online games or games consoles.

Instead many of these children will opt for online MOBA games that are free to play. Now kids being kids may have a natural talent playing computer games, but you can be sure that very few of them are team players.

Now the idea of Multi-Player Online Battle Arena gaming is to play as a team. With so many children playing these games and that number increasing every day, the quality of free MOBA games is going downhill. Internet shops are springing up all-over South-East Asia and they are inexpensive. What’s more is these internet shops are a connection to the outside world for many underprivileged kids playing these MOBA games.

Take into account all these factors and it is understandable why there are so many children playing free to play MOBA games such as Dota 2 and League of Legends. There is also plenty of discussion about these topics on gaming forums.

How does the negatively affect the game?

With the increasing number of children playing these games, the bigger decline there will be I adult players. The reason for this is because most adults will grow tired of the same BS players turning up and ruining their game. I for one quit playing Dota 2 for this very reason.

Dota 2 was a great game at one stage. It still is in many respects bar one snag. No one seems to want to play a strategic game anymore. No one seems to even bother reading about counter picks, drafting, farming, and other aspects of the game that equate to a win. This is surprisingly a problem that is not just prevalent in the lower MMR section of the game, but all the way up to mid-level MMR.

I tried League of Legends, which is not as good as Dota in my opinion, but I found pretty much the same issue with this game too.

The game is negatively affected because players don’t play as a team anymore. They do not pick heroes or champions with the team’s best interests at heart. If a support player is needed, the other player tends to ignore this fact and still pick a carry, which effectively means your team is unlikely to win.

What can these games do to stop a decline in their popularity?

Every MOBA games that is free should start to do a PEST analysis. This would really help them see into the future and understand how demographics and economical changes will negatively affect the popularity of their game.

Option 1: Create Age Group Brackets

One option would be to divide the game up into ager groups. Below 18-year-old players in one category, 18 to 25-year-old players in another, and 25 years plus in another. This would open up a whole new competition within the game itself where the best players in each age group can battle it out against each other as well as improve the gaming experience for older more mature players that are side enough to understand the strategy behind the game.

This is as opposed to being stick with a screaming kid on the mic that had not strategy or forethought for their actions.

Option 2: Force Drafts to Use a Support

Force players, particularly last picks, to be a support hero. Also, force that player to buy wards by encouraging that player to do so. For example, if by pick 5 all the other picks are carry heroes, then all carry heroes should be blanked out as an option and only available support heroes be available. This support should automatically buy the courier and 2 wards as a perquisite. That money should also come out of the support players total.

As the game moves on, players can be awarded 5 MMR if they buy the required number of wards from the shop as they become available. It doesn’t matter if another player buys them on behalf of the support as long as support has been buying wards.

There is still some lacking in a definite support here because heal items as well as dust plus sentry wards to spot invisible heroes and to deward opponents wards are not taken into consideration. However, some wards are better than no wards.

These games earn enough profit to be able to figure it out. The alternative at the moment is to lose players like myself and many of friends who now play only paid games. My $100 a month budget on gaming is much better spent elsewhere!

Option 3: Make People Pay to Play

The only other way to get rid of all the kids is to make people pay to play the MOBA game. Now I know this is probably not possible and a little prejudice in all fairness. When I say prejudice, I mean it is not very fair on those that do not have the money to play. However, that does not mean that there cannot be a paid version versus a free play version of the game.

To be honest the better idea would be to form age groups; although that comes with its own issues because it would be very hard to monitor people’s ages and you would be relying on their honestly. However, sending ID is not a massive deal, it is whether or not companies such as Steam, Valve, or Riot gaming would be willing to set up a team that would check this.

Therefore, making people pay is the most profitable and cost-effective way of getting rid of the kids that are making their games go to down the tube. Having a paid version and a non-paid version would certainly help. Although you would not altogether avoid the young players running the game in the paid version, it would certainly cut out a large majority of them considerably enhancing the gameplay for older more mature players like myself.

How much money are MOBA games going to lose if they do not take action?

Put it this way, I used to spend about $1,000 a year on Dota 2 – battle passes, player kits, and more. Now I spend $0 a year. I have at least 10 friends that also no longer play and between them they spent at least $5,000 to $10,000 a year on Dota.

Why did they all stop playing? Because they got fed up with the kids that would ruin the game and negatively affect their MMR. Now if I log back on to my Steam account and look at the profiles of the friends I made while playing Dota and League of Legends, I can already see nearly all of them have not played a game for 3 months or more. This is basically because these games are free games and people have grown tired of the lack of initiative taken by these games’ producers to make an attempt to restore the game back to something that is worth playing again.