Dota 2 combines a real-time strategy element with a traditional bird’s-eye view, while also incorporating a levelling and itemization system familiar to RPG games. Players are divided into two different factions, Radiant and Dire. Radiant represents the light, nature-friendly faction in the southwestern part of the map, while Dire, on the other hand, represents the dark, volcanic faction in the northeastern part. Players assume the role of a “hero” – a strategically very powerful unit, which through combat experience can progress to the maximum level, level 25.
Dota 2 heroes are divided into three different categories, strength, agility and intelligence, and these traits greatly affect their fighting methods. A standard Dota 2 setup places two fortresses on either side of an almost equally balanced map riddled with corridors, connecting two buildings (Ancient Fortresses) of critical importance, while at the same time riddled with waves of minions and towers. The goal of each match is to break through enemy defenses to destroy the enemy’s Ancient Fortress.
Because Dota 2 is a high-level team-oriented game, players must be well-coordinated in order to win. Defense towers and buildings are immune to attacks as long as the nearest defense tower is still standing. Periodically, groups of weak infantry units are created, often called “creeps”, and their task is to move along the corridor until they encounter an enemy unit or building, which they will then attack. The currency of the game is gold, which is added periodically to the player’s account but can also be collected by overpowering the opponent’s forces. Units that are defeated in combat give an equal amount of gold to their attackers, but the largest amount goes to the player who dealt the death blow.