LoL may not be the first MOBA, but it (not Dota) is definitely the one that all others are measured against. Riot Games took the Dota formula (that they helped create, thanks to the development input of Guinsoo) and said "How can we make this better?" And they've never stopped asking that question. They don't always succeed; in fact a lot of the things they do make me Face Palm, but they've never stopped trying to improve the game. Removing denial to encourage champion interaction within lane. Inventing ability scaling, runes, masteries and summoner spells and brush. Toning down raw skill power in exchange for lower costs and cooldowns. Removing almost all Random Number God elements from the game. Promoting "objective control" as the primary road to victory. Refining the vision game. Riot streamlined the game, keeping what worked and throwing out what didn't, making sure it was easy to learn but hard to master- watch a high level LoL pro play and TRY to claim it's a "no-skill game". They communicate with their players to explain the reasons for every change and nothing is sacred- the game is coming up on its 5th season and every season they practically reinvent the entire game, with new items, jungle changes, rune and mastery changes, summoner spell rotations and more. There are more (gameplay) differences between LoL in season 4 and the same game in season 1 than there are between Defense Of The Ancients All Stars and its own sequel. LoL also features the BEST-designed heroes in the genre. While there isn't anything as radically insane as Meepo or Invoker, Riot are constantly coming up with new ideas. While a lot of MOBAs can't even grasp the concept of resources OTHER than mana, LoL champions are designed so that their kits work together to make a coherent whole, fitting the theme of their character. The ones who don't (the infamous Sion, for example) get remorselessly scrapped and remade until they do. Champions like Ahri, Kha'Zix, Nocturne, Leona, Diana, Aatrox, Cassiopeia, Yasuo, Trundle, Riven, Rumble and DRAAAAAAAAVEN are iconic and immortal. The game is far from perfect, of course. The community sucks, that goes without saying. The metagame can sometimes be PAINFULLY stagnant, with up to half the roster being underpowered at a time. But Riot will never stop improving. Ever.
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