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Defense of the Ancients (DotA) is a type of custom map created for the game Warcraft III (by Blizzard Entertainment). DotA can be played as a multiplayer game, either on Battle.net, private servers or local area networks. artificial intelligence "bots" are available for the DotA Allstars variant. The original map has spawned several variants, including DotA Allstars. DotA Allstars v5.84c was featured in the Malaysian and Singaporean World Cyber Games 2005 national finals and the Cyberathlete Amateur League now runs an Open, Intermediate, Main and Invite division using DotA Allstars v6.41.
Defense of the Ancients is a team game with two opposing sides. Unlike regular Warcraft III games, in which many units are controlled by the player, in DotA each player must choose a single hero - with its own skills, strengths, and weaknesses, and control only this hero in order to achieve victory. The objective here is to destroy the opposing team's main structure (the "Ancient"), thus giving rise to the game name. To reach the Ancient, each hero must defeat waves of units, structures and enemy heroes. Along the way, the player may upgrade his or her hero by defeating enemies in combat, which supplies gold and experience points. These are both necessary in order to purchase upgrades either from shops or the hero's ability list.
Each hero can learn three "standard" abilities, and a special "ultimate" ability in all versions. The heroes are split into three classes, each emphasizing one of the three parameters: strength, agility, and intelligence.
DotA has been developed by many different authors. The original DotA map was created by a player named Eul. There is an item in the current DotA Allstars which gives credit to Eul (Eul's Scepter of Divinity). Eul has long since abandoned DotA, and his original map has inspired many variants, including the well known DotA Allstars. At one point, Guinsoo (who is also honored by a game item called the "Guinsoo's Scythe of Vyse") worked on it. Currently, IceFrog is the one who is leading the developers of DotA Allstars.
ADefense of the Ancients variants
Throughout the history of the Defense of the Ancients map development, various DotA map titles were created by map developers, either successors or spin-offs of the original version. These include:
- DotA: EX
- An early revision of DotA. Popular heroes such as Rylai Crestfall, the Void, Luna Moonfang, and the Tormented Soul came from this edition.
- DotA: TX
- Lina Inverse made her debut in this map.
- DotA Outland
- DotA Darkness Falls
- DotA Allstars
- The most popular variant of DotA, currently boasting the highest number of heroes. It is regularly updated by IceFrog and new heroes are added from time to time.
- DotA Classic
- DotA CHAOS
- DotA Rumble
- A variant of DotA with only one lane (through the middle), with towers scattered throughout.
- DotA: Danite's Hell
- A variant of DotA in which each hero is missing its normal magic abilities. Instead, abilities are randomly assigned from the pool of all possible abilities for heroes on the team (that is, the Scourge or Sentinel).
- DotA SC (alternatively, DSC or AoS II)
- A Starcraft-themed variant of DotA, with the fantasy themed heroes of regular DotA variants replaced with heroes representative of units from Starcraft and its expansion. Heroes are easier to kill, games are finished quicker, and there is the use of "Combat Buildings" to sweep for cloaked or camping players.
- 5v5 or 6v6 DotA (This map was not official, and had money codes in it)
- Gamebox DotA
- Eve of the Apocalypse (EotA)
- Age of Myths (AoM)
Stand-Alone Variants of DotA
- Widely regarded as the first stand-alone game in the DotA genre.
- League of Legends (LoL, and seldom LofL)
- Heroes of Newerth (HoN)
- A variant of DotA featuring many characters that have similar abilities, but have different names and appearances.
- Realm of the Titans (Traditional Chinese: 天翼決, Simplified Chinese: 天翼决, Pinyin: Tiānyìjué)
- A Chinese PC videogame variant of DotA.
- Rise of Immortals
- A variant of DotA that pushes toward the standard MMO PvE/PvP setup. Rise of Immortals is geared toward PvP and features a selection of Immortals that have a persistent skill tree which is then developed through playing matches. PvP Instances can go up to 5vs5.
- Dota 2
- A stand-alone variant of DotA: AS.
- There is a hit Swedish song called Vi sitter i Ventrilo och spelar DotA by BassHunter, roughly translated as "We're sitting here on Ventrilo and are playing some DotA".