It’s no shocker that Heroes of the Storm, Blizzard’s MOBA, is not given the love it had since its debut in 2015. While it’s still being updated, major studio support has been scaled down since that grave 2018 announcement.
Turns out that HOTS did not jump on the MOBA bandwagon soon enough, according to Blizzard co-founder and former president Mike Morhaime. During a talk at Gamelab Barcelona (via PC Gamer), it didn’t leverage on Dota’s popularity early enough; ironic considering that Dota was formed out of Warcraft 3 as a mod.
“First of all, I think the Heroes team made a great game. One of my regrets is that we didn’t pursue Dota early enough. Dota was very popular and we were very focused on World of Warcraft at the time—there were more people playing Dota than Warcraft 3.”
He also admitted that Blizzard shouldn’t have waited six years until catching up with Heroes of the Storm. “The community was doing a great job supporting it and we didn’t want to disrupt that. And frankly, we had our hands full trying to support the growth of World of Warcraft.
We felt like focusing on Warcraft was the right call at the time. In retrospect—boy, if I could go back in time and say, ‘You know what? Why don’t we have a small team that’s focused on doing something with Dota? Or why don’t we include Dota with the launch of StarCraft 2 and have a mode or something?’ I’d love to try doing that a little bit earlier. I think Heroes was probably too late.”
To be fair, Blizzard would have disrupted and messed up the Dota/LoL ecosystem if they did jump the gun. Then again, we wouldn’t be getting other stellar esports games like Overwatch if that were the case. We know we’re just running off on hypotheticals, but what would the competitive scene be like if HOTS were running the MOBA show?