Dota 2’s meta isn’t in an especially good place right now.
That’s something that players of all levels are agreeing on, but former Complexity Gaming captain Kyle Freedman is giving voice to that at the professional level. The Dota 2 caster spoke out on the slower pace of games right now, and he left no wiggle room for how he feels about the current state of the game in an interview with Forbes.
“The patch is gonna slow things down a bit,” Kyle said. “We desperately need more gold for hero kills and rotations, things have become somewhat dull as roaming is rather dead.”
The Dota 2 7.26 update has resulted in some huge shifts to the game, recalculating how bounty gold is calculated, reducing the value of kill streaks, and removing attribute bonuses from stats. Initially, it seemed as though this was designed to lessen the efficacy of prolonged farming sessions and to encourage teams to go for the finish faster. Instead, it has had the opposite effect.
Alongside the lessened rewards for farming, the rewards for kills were also reduced. This discourages teams from seeking out kills, and instead more heavily rewards passive farming. The result has been games that have a slower pace, but take longer to end on average. It’s a poor combination for fans and players alike.
The initial rollback of bounties came in large part thanks to a trend in Dota 2 games of wild comebacks resulting from a single late-game team fight. One side was able to be hammered for the majority of the game and fall into a deep hole in terms of the net worth, but one fight was enough to turn things around thanks to the huge windfall of gold and the lengthy respawn timers.
Balancing the significance of the early stages of the game while also leaving room for an exciting comeback is a difficult ask for a game developer, but adding in other concerns on top of those is just a lot.
There is no way to tell exactly how the meta will shape up over time, however. Though the outlook may be bleak at the moment, it is also possible that pro players will find new and creative ways to bring the game forward. If they can’t, expect Valve to shake things up to give the game a faster pace.