Updated Fri, Aug 05, 2011 by Stow
With a relatively firm grip on the MOBA genre, the guys at Riot Games aren’t about to get complacent. We get our hands on the new mode to let you know what you’re in for, and it’s a wild ride to say the least!
Dominion is the name of the new mode, and no, it is not replacing the basic game or Summoner’s Rift. Dominion is just a new map and mode of gameplay, accessible in the exact same way as you would launch any other old game of League of Legends. The similarities stop there though.
Instead of having a network of towers along 3 lanes defending your nexus, you’ve got nothing to soften up your opponents should you be beaten back. Even the ‘fountain laser’ has been greatly toned down. As for the map itself, the new map is a massive circle with five command points situated in a star formation. Owning more of these than your opposition leads to a command point ticker decreasing over time, and the first team to 0 loses.
Now, I know a lot of you are going to say HOLD THE BOAT STOW, THAT’S ARATHI BASIN/CALL OF DUTY/BATTLEFIELD BLACK OPS WHATEVER. Yeah, it’s not a truly original style of gameplay at this point, but as someone who has put in at least two thousand games of League of Legends in, it felt like a whole new ballgame. Let’s break down why.
- You start at level 3 – Immediately you’ve got a few skills and buttons to press.
- No neutral creeps, minimal minion interference – Puts a true emphasis on the objectives, rather than mindless farming for 20 minutes.
- A constant stream of gold and experience for all players – Keeps everyone in the game and turns slaughters into close games as more heroes come into their stride regardless of farm or levels
- Death timers halved, gold for hero kills reduced to 100, Recall time halved - Less time staring at grey screens and channeling spells, and helps encourage dangerous play as opposed to the current overly cautious gameplay
- Controlling a point gives you complete line of sight in the circle up to that point – Makes backdooring a risky proposition, even for stealth or global ultimates.
- Power Ups galore – Health packs, speed boosts, and a single special buff in the center of the map for each team makes fights frantic and fun.
- Tanky DPS isn’t so tanky. – Innate passive on all players that increases armor and magic penetration, and reduces the effects of healing encourages aggression and offense rather than massing HP and defense.
- Tons of room for new strategies and team combinations – We barely scratched the surface with our move speed builds, or cooldown reduction Kassadin builds.
- A whole new outlook on balance – Smaller skirmishes lead to a different outcome for some of the weaker heroes such as Jax and Heimerdinger, who excel in small fights. A rapid leveling and gold pace messes with the ‘golden age’ some heroes dominate during.