What Defines MOBA As A Game Genre?
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Jan 21, 2013

What Defines MOBA As A Game Genre?

MOBA (Multiplayer Online Battle Arena) is much different than every other game type in the gaming stratosphere. Most people don't realize that unlike any other type, MOBAs are meant to be strictly competitive. Most of the time they involve teams, (or require random strangers to act as a team and coordinate to victory). While other games have certain aspects that require this same level of dedication and seriousness, none can quite compare to the comradery that you will find in such a style of game.

Why People Dislike MOBA

The reason why most people stray away from MOBA games to begin with is because they have such a distinct learning curve. They don't understand that in order to be successful, you will have to spend hours of practice learning and mastering the controls, characters, etc. It's not just as simple as getting on the game and enjoying it, which is what one generally expects when they play a game. In fact, most of the people who play MOBA games, (at least at the higher levels of gameplay), are actually playing for a living.

E3 Expo 2012 - Guardians of Middle Earth
(Photo credit: Pop Culture Geek)
Professional MOBA Gamers
Yep, you heard that last line right, for a LIVING. In fact, MOBA is one of the few genres of game that people can actually play professionally in the world. These teams fight to make quite the pretty penny, and the prizes are only getting larger as time goes by. E-sports has become very popular amongst the third world countries, and is even making its way in to the United States slowly but surely. People think that gaming is simply for pleasure, (and to an extent it is), but when it comes to MOBA, things get serious very quickly.

Screenshot of Bos Wars 2.5 RTS game.
Screenshot of Bos Wars 2.5 RTS game. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

There are other genres that are similar to the MOBA scene, but none that can quite strictly compare. RTS is one of the few that actually can compare, (and one of the other few genres that actually make people money). People who don't like to play one individual character, (but still like these style of games), tend to play RTS because it's just a little bit different. Some people don't like the idea of only being able to control one character, (which is essentially what MOBA is), and that you are unable to place buildings or towers. Some MOBAs are actually incorporating some different ideas for towers in to their gameplay, which would definitely give them an edge on others.

People still wonder if adding towers is a bad move, though. I mean, sure, different MOBA games are meant to have slight changes, but the game type is still made what it is today by a whole. If one adds towers and it becomes successful, are all of the others going to look in to doing so as well? If they do, then will MOBA still be what it is, or will they need to adjust the name to reflect a different style of gameplay? Only time will be able to tell as one of the most feared gaming genres expands and updates within itself!

Guest Author: Parker is a professional MOBA gamer and enjoys writing about his career as a gamer. To find the top MOBA games checkout mmoattack.com

Related: What is an RPG game? - An Intro to Role Playing Games