What we know: DOTA 2 is the Multiplayer Online Battle Arena title that Valve is working on, currently in closed beta stage and set to be widely available at some point during this year.The genre is already pretty crowded, with titles like League of Legends and the original DOTA blog currently getting the biggest audiences, but Valve is well known for its ability to deliver high quality experience and for the potential huge audience that Steam can bring.
The closed beta reports say that DOTA 2 is a very solid experience that respects all the core features of the genre, but does little to push them forward in innovative ways or to undermine already ingrained automatisms in any way.
Players also say that the game tends to encourage more collaborative experiences than its current rivals, although much can change before Valve judges DOTA 2 to be ready for a wide release.
DOTA 2 will only be offered on the PC and might also arrive on the much rumored Steam boxes.
Why it matters: DOTA 2 is an important game because it represents the first time that a big company with a known track record tackles the MOBA market.
Free-to-play games with added microtransactions are seen by many as the future of the gaming industry and the degree of success of the launch will show the way for other big players in the market.
DOTA 2 will also face tough competition from League of Legends, which will continue to evolve during 2013, and it might represent the first time that Valve delivers a game that fails to get public traction.
The game will also be important because it could influence Blizzard’s plans for its own MOBA products, which some expect to be launched during 2014.
The full Incoming 2013 series of articles can be read on Softpedia right here.