It’s a LAN Party: Dota 2 Adding Local Play

I was dumbfounded when, at last year’s League of Legends World Championship, an entire day’s worth of matches was lost because of Internet connectivity issues at the venue. Silly me, I just assumed Riot set up LAN servers for the LOL tournaments in which contestants were playing for a million dollars.

Not wanting to repeat its Esports competitor’s incomprehensible gaffe, Valve will officially launch local area network play for Dota 2 in the MOBA’s next update. It’s called The First Blood Update, and it’s a big one, bringing LAN play, a new mode tied to a new draft system, a steep penalty for cheaters, and an upgraded armory on September 23.

Captain’s Draft is the new mode/draft system. Enter a lobby and your team will elect a captain. A random group of 24 heroes will be generated, and the captains from each team will take turns banning two heroes before picking their squad and going to battle. This should spice things up nicely with the pool of 100 heroes being drastically reduced, likely removing many go-to champs, while simultaneously making it more difficult to effectively counter opposing team picks.

As for the armory overhaul, Valve says it has made finding stuff easier by adding filters to enable navigation by item type, quality, rarity, and more.

Last but not least is Valve’s new approach to dealing with cheaters. If the anti-cheat system catches you using any external tools attached to Dota 2, you’ll instantly be banned for 30 days. On paper, it’s a nice deterrent, but it seems like the hackers and cheats are always two steps ahead of systems designed to stop them. Hopefully it has an impact, because there are a helluva lot of people playing Dota 2.

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