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PAX East DD2 Competitive Impressions


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As you all probably know, DD2 was at PAX East this weekend, and I was able to play it a ton throughout the weekend. It actually was the only thing I did on Sunday. I figured I'd share with the Dungeon Defenders community my impressions of the game, and maybe answer questions you might have. Just as a note, I only played three different characters, and I may have forgotten or missed a few things. Also, I compare it to LoL a lot. :P Anyways....

DD2's competitive is a MOBA, just like LoL and other games. At first, I was semi-unaware when I played my first match until I remembered & realized that. The competitive multiplayer actually plays 90% like you'd expect, with a few changes to make the game more appealing and easy to pick up. You move forward with your minions in one of three lanes, destroy the towers, and ultimately the enemies base.

Now, I'm not a big fan of LoL, but DD2 was different. This has to be because of how easy the game is to pick up and play.

First off, there is no overhead camera. It is placed right behind your character. It makes it easy to not lose track of anything on the screen and stay focused on what you are doing.

Secondly, the store in the game is easy for anyone. Unlike in LoL, where the store is loaded with a TON of weapons, potions, etc, everything is on one page and you can easily find what you're looking for. The store is broken into a few different sections: Potions, Tomes, Wards (and one or two others I can't remember because I only used those three during my games). Potions are one use, and have a minor effect on your player. Tomes are permeant effects for the one life you activate them on, which can give you the upper edge in battle. Wards, I sadly didn't use, but remember they're in the game. I feel the store is making the game extremely balanced and streamlined for players to easily play the game.

One thing I did notice while I observed games, was that a lot of DD players didn't play a MOBA before and really had NO IDEA how to play to this style. I've played a few league games, so I picked up on how to play quickly, but others didn't seem to have. The build does need tweaks on introducing players on how to play a MOBA like this, with indicators on how to level up skills(so many people didn't notice this), and other key features.

The MOBA styled multiplayer fits the game very well though, allowing you to use your heroes you've earned in the co-op in the multiplayer experience. After talking with a developer while waiting in line, a lot of your characters will share qualities, such as their customization, but levels/stats won't transfer due to balancing reasons. It's awesome to see both the modes working together to create an amazing experience.

The developer also told us that the game won't be Pay to Win and will work with a similar infrastructure like the original game. I heard something about being able to earn everything from weapons, characters, boosters, etc without paying. I heard the word "subscriptions" although I think he may have meant something else.

Overall though, the game looks and feels great. I'm excited for it to come out, and I really want to get in on the beta *cough* *cough* so I can keep my hands on it. It's super duper fun to play, and very hard to remove my hands from the keyboard and leave the booth, trust me on that. If it wasn't I wouldn't have come back as many times as I had. I might have missed a few things or mixed some terms up, but since I have forgotten a bit, that's probably why. I just wanted to share what I thought of the game with the community and dev team.

If you have any questions, I'll do my best to answer them. :)

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Thank you for your impressions! I was looking for that. I love DD and LoL a lot, so I'm sure I'll love this new awesome game too. :D

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I'm curious, what exactly was the style of the MOBA? Was it basically LoL or DOTA with DD characters and a simpler shop or was there some twist to it to make it unique? How were the new characters? Did any of them have unique ways of attacking or things that seemed fun? Did they seem pretty balanced?

Also, "won't be Pay to Win" and "work similar to the original" do not seem to go together to me. Nightmare is basically impossible if you don't have dlc characters.

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I'm curious, what exactly was the style of the MOBA? Was it basically LoL or DOTA with DD characters and a simpler shop or was there some twist to it to make it unique?

It really felt more like LoL. I can't say much for DOTA since I've never played it. From what I could tell (and from what they were, and maybe weren't showing). There is a "loot" system as in you will unlock loot after each match, which could be an outfit, weapon, etc. It's all the similar loot you found in the original DD, plus more. It also felt simpler and much easier to play for me though, which I enjoyed a lot.

One thing I forgot to mention in the OP is that the game is designed to be quickly played. There were some long matches (there was a 25 min cap on the PAX demo, won't be in final game), but the shortest I saw was 11 minutes. Mine were anywhere from 15 to 24:58 (yes, we won with 2 seconds to spare on the cap, haha!).

How were the new characters? Did any of them have unique ways of attacking or things that seemed fun? Did they seem pretty balanced?

The new characters ROCKED! I found my favorite, Gun Witch (might be forgetting the name). She is a flying/ranged character who shoots using an awesome gun. The abilities are pretty fun, with power shots, a "rocket jump" styled shot where you land on them, and a shot you have to aim and hit with a beam. There's also a half spider, half woman creature which you can shoot your webs at them, and even slow/stun them with a web trap. There was a ton in the demo, but I only played those two, plus the squire once on accident. I'm not a melee guy!

Also, "won't be Pay to Win" and "work similar to the original" do not seem to go together to me. Nightmare is basically impossible if you don't have dlc characters

Good point on the DLC characters... Although by the "work similar to the original" I meant in terms of collecting weapons, armor, etc. I wish the developer also elaborated more on this.

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can you build towers in the moba or is it all ability based?

what were some of the enemies you faced and how was it fighting them?

how do player vs player battles work? same as in d.d1?

how do the towers you need to defend work?

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Awesome, thanks for replying. I think if they find a way to balance it as far as loot goes it'll be an awesome game. I'm definitely looking forward to it.

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Ive had DOTA 2 for a long time and have only played it a couple times cause I just didnt catch on making it not fun.

I hope the MOBA is different in DD2 and will help people like me understand what to do cause in general, Im a FPS type guy but I really love DD1!

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Are the abilities in the DD2 competetive mode just putting down towers or do they actually have abilities? Thank you for the insight. =)

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Hi, I played a lot of games during PAX on Friday and Sunday, and got in a lot of conversation face time time with the Trendy Net guys who were there, so I can help answer some of this!

can you build towers in the moba or is it all ability based?

Are the abilities in the DD2 competetive mode just putting down towers or do they actually have abilities? Thank you for the insight. =)

It's all ability based. I didn't try every hero (there were only 22 available of the 24 showing on the hero page, plus I didn't get to play 22 games of course), but none of the ones I saw had any tower-placing mechanics. Abilites I saw include pulling enemies towards you, jumping across the whole map, healing allies, and MANA BOMB FOR TONS OF DAMAGE! (Seriously, mana bomb hits like a truck)

what were some of the enemies you faced and how was it fighting them?

Well, the generic goblins, dark elves, and goblin/elf siege engines make up the creeps that spawn and run at your base. Those aren't very interesting, they just run at each other and whack each other until they die. The jungle creeps are a little more interesting, the small camps seem to vary somewhat and can be things like spiders. The big jungle camps are gryphons I think, I didn't see too many of those since I was in the lane more often but I made a point to look around a few times in the jungle.

There is one big looking chaos demon which grants a powerful buff on death that was very challenging to fight, it seemed a lot more intelligent than the other monsters on the map, it had 100k health (which is a very large amount when you consider your turrets only have 20k). It even changed targets to stun people it saw channeling abilities!

how do player vs player battles work? same as in d.d1?

I mean, it's a MOBA style game compared to an arena fighter style game that DD1 was. There is really no comparing the two gameplay styles, they are entirely different. Rest assured, I'm sure there will be similar gameplay to DD1 in the co-operative mode which they are still working on

how do the towers you need to defend work?

They are pretty basic, they just shoot single-target powerful shots at whatever wanders close, preferring to target the small creeps that run at them instead of heroes, unless an enemy hero is fighting an ally hero under the tower's range. Then the tower will help its ally by shooting the enemy hero for lots of damage.

One thing I noticed about this game is that the towers do not see invisible units placed underneath them (including sight wards), which is really brutal as it allows heroes with stealth powers like the EV 2.0 to completely wreck you if they are ahead, since the tower won't be as able to protect you. It also doesn't reveal sight wards, which can make it tough to farm safely under tower since the enemy will see you the whole time and be able to snipe you.

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Can you elaborate on the items in the shop?

Does it allow you to customize you'r character?

Can you build a mage super tanky if you wish?

Do all the items disapear on death? If not which do and which does not?

How is the gameplay compared to DD1? Slower, faster or about the same? Does it feel like playing DD1?

Oh, and do you have pets in the MOBA part?

You say it's 3rd person camera, but in the pictures we see that the camera is like DOTA/LoL. Is this a option you can choose? I hope it's not, DD2 should only have 3rd person camera IMO^^

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First, thanks MajeSan for answering questions while I slept! Haha.

Can you elaborate on the items in the shop?

From what I can remember, there are potions, wards, tomes, and a few other things. Potions are temporary effects from giving you health, mana, etc. Wards (if I remember right) give you sight to areas on the field that are still dark. Tomes are permeant effects for that one life you activate them.

Does it allow you to customize you'r character?

The PAX demo didn't allow me to customize my character. There will be character customization for colors and other visuals, but not sure on stats.

Can you build a mage super tanky if you wish?

Same as above, not sure. There are some awesome characters though.

Do all the items disapear on death? If not which do and which does not?

Items are not dropped, in the MOBA at least. They are given at the end of the match.

How is the gameplay compared to DD1? Slower, faster or about the same? Does it feel like playing DD1?

The MOBA is different from DD1. This isn't the cooperative experience I played. The old experience is still there, just wasn't playable or talked about.

Oh, and do you have pets in the MOBA part?

I'm not sure. I wish I asked a developer this. I was given a code for a pet to redeem, but I don't exactly know. It'd be fun!

You say it's 3rd person camera, but in the pictures we see that the camera is like DOTA/LoL. Is this a option you can choose? I hope it's not, DD2 should only have 3rd person camera IMO^^

There was one control I didn't use, which was the "space bar" to get into targeting mode. I couldn't get it to work right (might have been bugged in the build they showed). It was all a camera from right behind the character, which I loved.

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Have to say, I played this weekend and had never touched a MOBA before, and embarrassed myself horribly. It seems similar to one of the BGs in WoW. It will take some getting used to, but I can't wait to learn! :)

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Have to say, I played this weekend and had never touched a MOBA before, and embarrassed myself horribly. It seems similar to one of the BGs in WoW. It will take some getting used to, but I can't wait to learn! :)

Yeah, MOBAs take a while to get used to. I was happy that I played LoL a bit and understood some of the logic. I'm sure all of us DD fans will become good at playing em! :)

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[QUOTE]Can you elaborate on the items in the shop?[/QUOTE]

Health Potions, Mana potions, tomes, wards of sight/reveal are what I do remember. Potions and wards work like they do in any other MOBA, however, tomes last forever until you die (and they are relatively expensive). There are about 6 tomes from what I remember, costing 1000 gold each, and you can have all of them up at the same time (don't forget to use it after you buy it! - I did a few times lol).

[QUOTE]Does it allow you to customize you'r character?[/QUOTE]

During the showcase no, but I'm sure you will be able to.

[QUOTE]Can you build a mage super tanky if you wish?[/QUOTE]

It didn't seem like you could.

[QUOTE]Do all the items disapear on death? If not which do and which does not?[/QUOTE]

The items in your inventory do not. Any buffs you have are gone.

[QUOTE]How is the gameplay compared to DD1? Slower, faster or about the same? Does it feel like playing DD1?[/QUOTE]

The PvP seemed slower, but that's because you can't toggle running/walking, and you can't jump (but that's because it's a MOBA).

[QUOTE]Oh, and do you have pets in the MOBA part?[/QUOTE]

Not shown in the showcase.

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Thank you for the impressions guys. I appreciate it a lot. :)


No problem! Happy that people like hearing about the game. Wish I grabbed some pics or video of the game, but was too busy playing. :P

Now I just need to get some beta access and play this game all night long. :P

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I keep imagining this topic as that scene in Grease with everyone around singing "Tell me more! tell me more! did they have nice spells?" xD


Anyways, thanks for the impressions, it was an awesome reading XD Can't wait for them to show us more.

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Hey, it's me again, I figured I could add a few details to what Angry is saying, based on my own personal experience:
Can you elaborate on the items in the shop?

From what I saw, items seemed to come in tiers. Tomes were one-shot utility items. The one I used the most was the teleport tome, because being able to have map presences is great. There were also tomes for move speed and protection from magic, but their effects were very short-term. Potions were much the same way. There were about 5 potions, and they gave small damage boosts, armor boosts, health regeneration, or mana regeneration for about 15 seconds. The last potion gave 35% cooldown reduction, which I never actually got to test out but it seemed cool.

Beyond the very short term temporary consumable items, there also were sight wards to give vision in the fog of war, and the revelation wards to give vision over invisible units. The "big" items were oils and elixirs, which were both permanent. Oils gave you effects like, permanent damage increase on attack, slowing effect on attack, 2% life stealing on attack, and of course more armor. Elixirs were the big dog items, giving insane effects like "20% damage reflection AND 10% damage reduction AND 2000 health regen every 30 seconds. The Oils cost 1000 gold and the elixirs cost 2500 gold, which is pretty simple to earn since each creep gives about 50-60 gold when you kill it. However, it's worth noting items of the same type CANNOT stack. You may only have one oil active and one elixir active at the same time! This is to stop any one player from getting too far ahead.

Does it allow you to customize you'r character?

I accidentally fooled around in a few menus outside of the MOBA game itself, and I can say the character customization for the MOBA part of the game is pretty much like DotA 2. There are 6 equipment slots for each character, ranging from the obvious weapons to more cosmetic things like the barrel of rootbeer on the back of the Rider hero's mount. At the end of each round of MOBA game, you get either money, a chest with random loot inside that you have to unlock, or an item you can use to customize your hero outright. Also, each hero seems to have their own experience bar for the MOBA, and the summoner spell that you can use for the MOBA was based on which characters you had to level 10, meaning there was a selection of something like 30(!) summoner spells! The XP System was disabled for the beta though so I Don't know much about it.

Can you build a mage super tanky if you wish?

Like Angry said, you can try, but it might not work. The thing about the item system is that your base stats are kind of all within a very wide range based on champion. The big bad Crystal Knight has like 15k health at max level whereas the frail speedy Series EV 2.0 has something like 9k. If you want to buy a Dragon Scale elixir and be a tank, no one is stopping you! You might just be better off with a different option is all.

Do all the items disapear on death? If not which do and which does not?

Angry said everything about this, nothing for me to say here.

How is the gameplay compared to DD1? Slower, faster or about the same? Does it feel like playing DD1?

Yes and no, haha! The actual movement speed of your champions itself seems very slow compared to most MOBAs I've played. There are no "boots" items you can use to speed yourself up, in fact there are no speed items outside of the very short term Swiftness tome. Movement speed is a very hard stat to balance for a MOBA, so I can understand why Trendy is doing this. Keeping things simple makes the game accessible to everyone.

However it is worth saying that the games themselves are very fast paced. The champions are so varied that there are tons of gameplay options, and none of the games I played lasted over 25 minutes, some finishing as fast as 15 minutes. For a MOBA, the flow gameplay moves really quick, even if your champions do not necessarily move super fast.

Oh, and do you have pets in the MOBA part?

The only thing I could possibly add here is that they gave away codes for pet versions of the original 4 DD heroes with shirt purchases, so there will definitely be pets somewhere. I don't know either when they will be in or what they will be like though.

You say it's 3rd person camera, but in the pictures we see that the camera is like DOTA/LoL. Is this a option you can choose? I hope it's not, DD2 should only have 3rd person camera IMO^^

The TrendyNet devs I talked to said that this change to third person camera happened literally within days of PAX, so they didn't have much of a chance to show it off before now. They also expressed a desire to have the camera angle pulled back so you can see around you better. I didn't see any option for top-down camera like LoL or DotA, so I can't say about this, it doesn't seem like it's a thing but development is still very early so who knows.

does the summoner have a wep

Yeah, it's some kinda wand thing. Based on the one time I played against a Summoner Hero, he seems the most like his DD1 version in the MOBA. He still summons minions of his own to do his bidding. They all have 4 health and take 1 damage per attack, so they can't be one-shot by enemy heroes. They do cute things like explode on death to punish melee champions, or seek out enemy heroes and hit them instead of the creep wave. He was definitely annoying to play against.

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Thanks for all the info you guys are posting and for answering so many questions. I can't think of any right now but I've enjoyed the read :)

Found a question.
[QUOTE]Also, each hero seems to have their own experience bar for the MOBA, and the summoner spell that you can use for the MOBA was based on which characters you had to level 10, meaning there was a selection of something like 30(!) summoner spells![/QUOTE]
Are you talking about the Hero Summoner and that his abilities depend on what heroes you have leveled up, or is it referring to a different type of spell?

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Omg, can't believe I forgot to ask this. How does the auto attack work?

Also movement and controls would be cool to hear. I asume its WASD + 1-4 for skills and 2 more for summoner spell/back to base.

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