DOTA 2 vs. League of Legends: Which MOBA Reigns Supreme?

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By | September 16th, 2021 | Categories: League of Legends

Many gamers get into heated arguments over many things. More times than not, it’s due to their competitiveness when it comes to online gaming. Online games have become a staple in many people’s gaming libraries these days, and the MOBA genre tends to stick out like a sore thumb. Amidst the slew of MMOs, FPS, and ARPG games in the online realm of gaming, there’s not a whole lot of variety when it comes to MOBAs, which is probably why DOTA 2 and League of Legends are the two titles that come to the top of the mind of many people when thinking about the genre. But the question is, which MOBA should be that players ought to play first before the other?

A Never-Ending Debate

For many years, League of Legends and DOTA 2 have sat at the forefront of the MOBA genre. They’re also responsible for the development of esports as a whole thanks to their roles of hosting active competitive scenes and giving players consistent game mechanics. Needless to say, the debate of which MOBA is the best will never end. It’s a simple question albeit complex at the same time. After all, each person has their preference and stance on everything. It’s hard to convince a set of players that already have their preferred title in mind. With that, this comparison aims to not necessarily get into the nitty-gritty of which game is more superior, but rather, will take a more objective approach as to reviewing both of the games’ strengths and flaws.


Back then, DOTA 2 and League of Legends never really planned to make a sequel for their games or try to come up with a different genre using their characters. These days though, that has changed. Autochess has become a trend recently, and both titles take advantage of this. DOTA 2 has its Dota Auto Chess which started as a video game mod, while League of Legends decided to build an auto chess-like video game from the ground up by introducing Teamfight Tactics. Both auto chess games are also available on mobile platforms.

Besides that though, we’d say that League of Legends has the upper hand in terms of variety. This is because, besides TFT, they have a lot more to offer. For example, Riot Games also released a strategy card game called Legends of Runeterra which was heavily inspired by Magic: The Gathering. Then, of course, who could forget about League of Legends: Wild Rift, the mobile port of the actual League of Legends title on PC? While it’s certainly watered down and it’s an entirely different game since it doesn’t cover cross-play or cross-platform support, it’s a great way for mobile-only players to get into MOBA gaming even without having access to a computer.

Hitting A Paywall

A sad reality that we all live in is that all of the competitive games these days have microtransactions. It’s unavoidable at this point, and while it remains a controversial topic, the gaming community has grown to accept them so long as they’re not too overbearing. DOTA 2 and League of Legends both have microtransactions, but in terms of who utilizes them the most, we would say that LoL’s microtransactions are much more pronounced. This is due to the paywall that surrounds all of the champions in the game. Most of the new champions that come in League of Legends come at a high price point, and since players can only earn a little bit of the currency at a time, grinding can be a chore. There’s an option to purchase the champions with LoL’s premium currency, but that would immediately suck up a player’s savings if they decide to get them all in one go.

On the other hand, DOTA 2 boasts a complete roster of heroes that players can immediately use for free. Newbies who aren’t too keen on spending their dough just to unlock characters will feel welcome here. This results in DOTA 2 having an edge over League of Legends in terms of who has a thinner and player-friendly paywall.

Learning Curve

This is the part where a player’s preference comes into play. DOTA 2 has a steep learning curve that not everyone can master, but that makes the complexity all the more rewarding for players who are willing to put in the time to understand the game’s mechanics. With a unique mechanic in DOTA 2 called “counter mechanic”, players would have to have in-depth knowledge concerning the game’s roster, thereby adding an extra layer of skill needed to play the game. This is perfect for gamers that love a good challenge and want to feel a sense of fulfillment in each match.

When it comes to League of Legends, it’s an easier game to pick up for sure. There’s still a place of contention as to whether what’s truly “easy” and “hard”, but in a general sense, League of Legends is often referred to as a dumbed-down game—and that’s not a bad thing at all. Playing a challenging game is fun and all, but some players prefer just having a fun time playing the game without having to worry about the nuances of every mechanic in a MOBA. This makes LoL the perfect MOBA for casual online gamers that just want to play a game or two just for the sake of it.

The Verdict

We know it’s a bit corny to say, but the answer as to which of the two MOBAs is truly the best boils down to personal preference. A player that prefers slow yet complex gameplay will immediately lean towards DOTA 2. While players that want fast-paced gameplay with simplified mechanics would choose League of Legends. All in all, there’s no right or wrong answer when it comes to picking which one is objectively the best—both of them have their weaknesses and strengths. At the end of the day, what matters is what you enjoy playing the most!

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