The sequel to the mega-popular Warcraft 3 mod, Defence of the Ancients 2 (DotA2) has been announced to be free-to-play once the game releases. Valve CEO Gabe Newell also says it’s going to be free-to-play with a few twists to it.
According to Newell the business plan for the PC and Mac RTS is still being worked out, but it will be designed around rewarding the community for their contributions within the community. “The issue that we’re struggling with quite a bit is something I’ve kind of talked about before, which is how do you properly value people’s contributions to a community?” says Newell.
With a focus on community contribution DotA2 sounds like it may be trying to usher in a new form of social media. Rewarding players who take the time to help those at a lower level, or acted as useful in-game guides. With the huge success that Team Fortress 2 became since it has gone free-to-play, DotA2 will be the natural expansion of those ideas and they will be more applied.
“When somebody from the general business press says ‘social network’, they generally mean a website that looks like Facebook,” he explained. “If I had to talk about a model, it would be more about how gamers can benefit from a collective action of all the other gamers, and there are a bunch of different ways that can occur – whether from things that look like traditional social networking notifications to higher-value activities.
“As far as I know, Facebook doesn’t have the ability for people to fundamentally modify or edit the underlying Facebook experience. It really is more a legacy of John Carmack’s [id Software] thinking about things than it is social networking.”
DotA2 is currently in its beta testing stage with a release date that has not been announced yet. Over the coming weeks more information will be coming about the game’s free-to-play structure and hopefully when we will be seeing the game’s release. We will be seeing DotA2 sometime this year.
Source goes to Edge Magazine