Dota 2’s Latest Update Improves New Player Experience
Dota 2 has released perhaps its most significant update in years as developer Valve looks to improve new player experience. The massive patch, which dropped on March 25th, aligned perfectly with the release of the new animated show Dota: Dragons Blood.
The update is a clear effort to welcome new fans. Announced on Twitter and on Valve’s official website, The patch has sought to create a more welcoming environment for new players. A mix of tutorials, quality of life changes, and punishment for those who take advantage of new players, the update is a landmark move for Dota 2.
There are dozens of new features. Here a few key ones:
- Streamlined Shop
- Updated Dota 2 Objectives
- Player Rewards
- Dota 2 Glossary
- New Player Mod
- Better Bots
- Wizard Tips
- New Player Chat
- Coaching Features
- A New Website
On top of this, the game has officially made smurfing a bannable offense. Smurfing has been one of the most contentious parts of Dota 2 for years. Many have stated stating that the problem has only gotten worse over time. In the past, pro players and prominent community members pointed to Dota 2 being nearly unplayable thanks to smurfs. But with the bans, the new player and lower-level pug experience will be much improved.
The blog post stressed that this update wasn’t just for new players. It also wanted to welcome returning players back. Dota 2 has never seen a huge exodus of players leaving the game, but slowly over time, the numbers have fallen. While still the number two most-played game on Steam, the game has definitely suffered with player attrition. Valve looks to inspire its player base to return along with its new intake in this new update.
What of the Community Tutorial?
Cynically you could point out that Valve’s efforts to make things better for new players came only after undermining huge amounts of work from the Dota 2 community. After months of work, a community tutorial headed by Jake “SirActionSlacks” Kanner and Shannon “SUNSfan” Scotten released just days ago.
The project, which was crowdfunded, and community-driven, looked to create a coherent tutorial prior to the release of Dota: Dragon’s Blood. However, Valve has crucially linked their new player experience to this community tutorial.
As Valve explained in on the update’s page: “We’ve also been encouraged by the community’s own efforts and progress in this area and will be including a section in the objectives for the new community tutorial spearheaded by SirActionSlacks. If we see other similar activity in this space from the community, we’ll look into adding it in the future as well.”
Overall it’s a huge patch and one that practically snuck into the game. As well as capitalizing on the launch of the new Dota: Dragon’s Blood Anime, Valve has finally made one of their most popular games more accessible than ever to new players.