Ever noticed a lot of crossover concepts between ARTS MOBAs?
League and Dota were born from the same WC3 mod, DotA or Dota 1. Heroes of Newerth (HON) followed in this vein and featured many of the original DotA characters ported over and renamed. Heroes of the Storm (HotS) is produced by Blizzard, which owns the rights to Warcraft, and thus the original hero concepts. It’s kinda convoluted, but it explains why you see a lot of the same general hero concepts across all the big ARTS MOBAs.
Does anyone still play Strife and Smite any more?
So, how do the heroes match up? League and HotS differ the most from the group, in part because HotS includes characters from several Blizzard games. Riot has done a good job of mix and matching abilities as well as developing unique hero (ahem, champion) designs, but there’s some crossover in both general designs and playstyles.
Hero Comparisons between Dota and League, HoN and HotS
Let’s talk Fairy Dragons for a second: Puck (Dota), Brightwing (HotS), Bubbles (HoN).
Brightwing and Puck are the most similar graphically, although their ability kits are pretty different. Brightwing is a support in HotS but you’ll see Puck played as a mid carry in Dota. Bubbles might look like the turtle kung fu master from Kung Fu Panda but his abilities are almost identical to Puck’s.
League doesn’t have a fairy dragon (boo) but does have Lissandra, who has pretty similar albeit ice-themed abilities. Lissandra’s Glacial Path is much like Puck’s Orb and sort of like Brightwing’s Blink Heal in that it’s a relocate ability, although Brightwing heals and Lissandra damages, but the comparison pretty much ends there. Lissandra’s Frozen Tomb ability reminds me of Winter Wyvern in Dota, actually.
Garen and Juggernaut/Swiftblade:
Jugg and Swiftblade from HoN share a few ability crossovers with Garen in League. All three are “spin to win” heroes.
I’ve played two practice games of League, and both times I’m pretty sure I picked Garen. I didn’t find that my familiarity with Juggernaut helped me out in this case. Juggernaut doesn’t have a direct counterpart in HotS, but if you’re fond of his spinny mechanic, Sonya might be a good choice for you.
One of the closest Dota and League hero comparisons is Axe and Darius. Both have an ult that allows them to essentially execute a target. Counter Helix and Decimate serve essentially the same purpose although Axe’s ability is a passive. If you like one of these heroes, you’ll probably enjoy playing the other.
I’ll be testing out the Dota/HoN compatibility in the next few weeks, as I decided to give Heroes of Newearth a try. A lot of Dota pros are ex-HoN players, which seems logical as many of the heroes are just about direct ports. Players coming to Dota from League (or vice versa) have a harder time figuring out which heroes best fit their playstyles. HotS is a bit of a wildcard, but if you have a favorite ability you’ll probably be able to find it on a hero in HotS.
I should mention that for a while I thought the Brewmaster from Dota was a cat-guy and couldn’t figure out why he turned into three bears during his ult. In this case I prefer Blizzard’s model for Chen.