So after being bombarded with a bunch of mechanics that my poor little League of Legends mind couldn't even begin to fathom. (Because League of Legends is apparently way too simple), I attempted to play a game.
I went 0/10/2.
This was to be expected. DOTA2 was known for having a steep learning curve so I attempted to learn it. Because I did not want to spend the next few hours leveling up vs bots to play PVP on a smurf account for Australia. (Especially when those hours have to be paid for because I have to play at an internet cafe)
I attempted again to play. So I picked Phoenix. I liked the burning bird person and I thought the giant laser of death was awesome with an ultimate that killed you but burned everyone down then exploded.
I left the base and went into my lane. Come to find out, the enemy can kill their own minions, denying you gold.... okay, that's interesting. But I'll go along with it. After using 3 abilities I realized I pretty much had virtually no mana. That's fine, I figured I'd just wait for a few seconds for that lovely blue bar to refill a bit. ...didn't happen. So apparently, Mana management was important. Fine fine, lesson learned. Moving on, getting stronger with each failure.
Then something comes up on my screen saying how someone captured the Bounty Rune. O..okay whatever the heck that is. Moving on.
I have 2,000 gold and I feel like I wanna buy something. So I walk back to the base. After being pinged about 20 times by my team, I ask what's going on and they proceed to tell me (in a relatively not so nice way), that I should just use the courier to buy items and have it brought to me. ...okay what the heck is a courier? Well, it's a thing that you click and buy items with and it brings you the items. Okay that's cool I guess. I just think like it's a much slower version of Ornn's passive. Easy to understand. However, I then realize that it's a shared courier that had to be shared with your other teammates. ...okay that's cool. Oh, also the enemy can kill your courier. ...alright. Swell. Gotta keep your courier protected.
Now I'm fiddling around, trying to figure out how to even use the courier but realize I'm still in lane and the other laner doesn't really give a hoot for my lack of courier knowledge. I die. After a few...relatively long seconds of waiting I head back into lane and try again.
A few random things happen and eventually we get to the late game. Now, I have no idea what the heck is going on. Between the massive snowballing Walrus who falcon punches you for all your health, the weird void that that forces everyone into a stasis-like state, the dude who makes an army of things run at you, the guy who blows a cyclone and my sad pathetic little fire bird that's trying to do something of relevance, I'm very very very confused as to what's going on. However, one thing I notice after I die is a little number above my faded out icon that reads 120 seconds. So...coming from a dude who thinks that 40 - 50+ seconds is a long time, seeing this incredibly high number, had completely and utterly floored me. What made it worse was that people were telling me they saw numbers going higher than 150 seconds.
In the end, we lost. We lost pretty badly.
I played about maybe 4-5 games of DOTA2 before my time on the internet cafe ran out and I left out of the building feeling very enlightened to something. Something that's been plaguing me for a very very long time.
People who've dedicated their lives to mastering all of the incredibly complex and complicated game mechanics can easily look at a game like League of Legends and make fun of the players for playing what in their mind is a very watered down version of DOTA2. A lot of the players often mock the League players by often calling them retarded, slow, or simply too stupid and immaturely impatient to understand such an incredibly complex game DOTA is.
On the League side of things, the players often look at the DOTA2 players as elitists. Believing that they're so conceited with learning a game that's so painfully over-complicated with a bunch of game mechanics that almost feel like it's just complicated for the sake of being complicated so that it stands out as the "true hardcore MOBA for super hardcore MOBA fans".
Having played DOTA2 for a nice chunk of time, I have come to my own personal opinion.
While I commend the players for taking the time to painstakingly master every single little bit of game mechanic, I can't help but feel like a lot of DOTA2's mechanics are just a tad bit on the obnoxious side of things. That terms such as stacking, learning the turn rate of every hero, the collision size of the heroes, learning when to upgrade your attributes, the four different damage types, the four attack damages, the attack animations, the cast animations, the cycle of night and day and how some heroes have different attributes that change based on the type of day it is, the interactions with trees, ETC.
There are tons and tons and tons of things for you to learn to master and that's not even the ADVANCED GAME MECHANICS, such as learning about High Ground and Unique Attack Modifiers and different Hero Combos, countering entire team compositions, countering heroes, banning heroes and other things I haven't even mentioned yet.
There are so many things to this game that it's overwhelming. You could spend a month just mastering one character and learning about every item.
I feel like the people who mock League of Legends players for enjoying a simpler game would be like the people who look at Chess and go, "Why are you playing that stupidly easy game? Why don't you play Feudal instead? It's soooooooo much better!" (Look it up)
While I do admit that there is a lot of merit to this game having so many varying mechanics to learn and master, I feel like this really isn't very noob-friendly at all. In fact I feel like the super complicated game mechanics actually drive away new players, punishing your lack of knowledge with incredibly long death timers and toxic teammates who will not hesitate to type Cyka blyat at you or even иди нахуй, or мать твою ебал or a lot of things in Russian, because of a lot of players from Russia play this game.
Between the incredibly steep learning curve and unforgiving teammates, DOTA2 pretty much drove me away from really taking the time to wade through the punishing environment that it gave. Yes, it gives you all the heroes for free. Yes, it allows you to test out skins. Yes, it does a lot of things that League of Legends probably should do as well. But these things don't really change the one aspect that hurts it the most in my opinion, it's lack of an open gameplay to new players.
I will probably just play Overwatch while I'm here in Australia for now and just go back to playing League of Legends when I get back home. DOTA isn't a bad game in any word. The graphics are top notch, the music is pumped and really gets you into the battle, the gameplay (once you actually get into it) is engaging and incredibly deep and filled with intense strategy, and the players that you do meet that aren't toxic af, are actually fairly understanding that you've literally never played the game before.
But just like everyone enjoys a different flavor of coffee, I find the difference between DOTA2 and League of Legends similar to a dark black strong coffee you get at Starbucks and a light and sweet coffee you buy at Dunkin Donuts. I personally find DOTA2 a little too strong for my taste.