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Real Time Strategy (Games) Games

Heroes of Newerth Open Beta About To Start 118

Posted by Soulskill
from the getting-closer dept.
You may recall last summer when we discussed Heroes of Newerth, a title from S2 Games that's based on the popular Defense of the Ancients mod from Warcraft III. We passed out some closed beta keys, and there seemed to be a ton of interest, in part due to the fact that they have a Linux client. Well, if any of you missed it or want to see how the game has progressed since then, now is your chance — the open beta begins tonight (March 31). There's a countdown on the sign-up page that shows when you can register.
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Heroes of Newerth Open Beta About To Start

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  • Awesome! (Score:2, Interesting)

    by ezbo (1596471)
    I have been one of the lucky closed beta testers, and I can tell you that the least people I've seen online was 38,000. ragequits and no-stat try-hards FTW!!!
    • Re:Awesome! (Score:4, Insightful)

      by dunezone (899268) on Wednesday March 31, 2010 @08:53AM (#31686172) Journal
      There are three games out there right now that follow the original gameplay style of Defense of the Ancients from Waracraft 3

      League of Legends
      Heros of Newerth
      Demigod

      League of Legends is by far the easiest to start with if you havent played the original DOTA. Easy matchmaking system, the ingame item system is very friendly to figure out what does what and how to scale items, way better then Heros of Newerth or Demigod. The developers have been very supportive of the game, theres typically a new hero added to the game every 6 weeks or so. Unfortunately on a hero release the character is usually over-powered but fixed within a week or so. Theres complaints about balance issues but thats because League of Legends is based on teamwork and not that one man Rambo which is seen in HoN or DOTA. A team that works together can easily take out the 5 man team that act like Rambos.

      Demigod has fallen off the face of the map since the game was extremely buggy and multiplayer didnt work for several weeks after launch. Also, I believe the developers have only added 1 single hero to the game so far in about a year and a half of release? I gave up on this game after the developer wrote a four page paper about how they fixed the multiplayer and the steps they took, it was posted on Slashdot some time ago. They never really fixed it and it was still laggy and performance would drop late game when the creeps would over-take the map causing games to go to a crawl, crash, lag out.

      Heros of Newerth is definitely not for those who have never played the DOTA style of gameplay. The crowd that plays HoN is extremely serious and will eat you alive if you screw around or suck. This is the games main problem because it really turns people away from playing it and its not the developers fault its a community problem. What I like about HoN though is that the game is way more stable then LOL (LOL uses a launcher which can crap out a lot) and its built on the foundation of competitive gameplay with features lacking from the other games, Observation mode, blind pick, one by one pick, etc.
      • How exactly can you make sweeping generalizations about the crowd that plays HoN when the game is still in a relatively small closed beta.

        The people who get into and play betas tend to be the people most interested and devoted to the game--they have probably played a lot of DoTA--Basshunter is probably happily playing away. The rush of noobs won't hit until the launch (although there will be more people joining in tonight).

        • by dunezone (899268)

          How exactly can you make sweeping generalizations about the crowd that plays HoN when the game is still in a relatively small closed beta.

          "Heroes of Newerth is currently in Closed Beta with over 1,000,000 users registered."

          This is pulled from Wikipedia which source is linked directly to the HoN forums. 1 million users is not a relatively small closed beta.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by devnull17 (592326)

          I got a HoN beta key a few months ago and played for a month or two. Based on my impressions, the OP is spot-on in his observations about the community. It's actually most of the reason I don't play anymore.

          To put this in context, I led a fairly hardcore WoW raiding guild for a couple of years, and played Magic Online semi-seriously for a while. I have a pretty thick skin. I'm very familiar with the concepts of nerd rage and sexual frustration made manifest over the Internet. It's worse in HoN than any

          • I agree, the community sucks, but I think the other problem with HoN is that they seem to have identified the worst elements of DotA, and then magnified them. I got into the closed beta, played about 7 games, and gave up. DotA started to go downhill a few months after TFT came out. I was hoping that a brand new implementation of the game might return to the core elements which made it so good, wihout any of the crappy 'pro' stuff which just made in unplayable, and it hasn't.

            • by PachmanP (881352)
              HoN is a great game if you want to learn racial slurs in new languages. It's good fun if you can play with friends until you get up to speed. Although, if you have friends that are the "controller thrower" archtype maybe pass on inviting them. It's as addictive as crack. You get pissed off at the game and the community and uninstall it, and find yourself needing a fix a week later...
      • So, I've played around 200 games of Heroes of Newerth and many games of DotA before that. While I admittedly play as many games with friends as possible (don't we all?) only about half of my games played fall in that category. That's a solid 100 games in the "community".

        Are there internet a-holes? We all know the answer is yes, but I've only had about 5 games out of all those played where it was an issue. I also am not one to rage personally, so maybe that helps. In those rare cases, the game gives you t

  • by PIBM (588930) on Wednesday March 31, 2010 @03:33AM (#31684026) Homepage

    bought it to support them, played a while but stopped for 6 months since it was too unbalanced and not buggy enough to warrant beta testing, and just came back to it a few days ago. The game has progressed a lot and it's very fun to play :)

    • What do you think when should unbalancedness be fixed?
      I hazard a guess, it is beta testing with a relatively large number of actual players.

    • by TheKidWho (705796)

      Yes, they had a little trick on their website where you could simply gift yourself a copy of the game to get into closed beta.

    • bought it to support them, played a while but stopped for 6 months since it was too unbalanced and not buggy enough to warrant beta testing

      So, although it was unbalanced, the game was too bug-free for your liking?

      just came back to it a few days ago. The game has progressed a lot...

      I take it they introduced sufficient bugs that you now consider it buggy enough?

  • Not trying to advertise but League of Legends [leagueoflegends.com] is a very solid clone of DOTA. There is no Linux (sorry slashdot) but it is fairly well balanced.
    • Re: (Score:1, Interesting)

      League of Legends is a superior game in most respects, and it's from the same people that made the original DOTA mod. It also has a better payment model with reasonable micro transactions. But no content is cut off from free players, they just have to play longer to get it.
      • League of Legends is a superior game in most respects, and it's from the same people that made the original DOTA mod.

        When you say original, do you mean the real original, or the horribly unbalanced piece of crap that was made by people that had nothing to do with the original that came after that?

      • I fail to see how, in a thread about HoN, mentioning the fact that its #1 competitor also *exists* is offtopic.

        While I'm here, I might as well mention that LoL is a fun and innovative game, with some seriously talented industry players (Tom Cadwell, for example) working on it. I wasn't in the HoN closed beta, but I popped in here to see if people liked that, too.

  • by Rix (54095) on Wednesday March 31, 2010 @03:45AM (#31684090)

    I had a closed beta invite early on, but the community is angry, rude and just spoil the game.

    • Re: (Score:1, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      same impression here. there isn't a tutorial to speak of, and the community will throw you out in 5 minutes when they see you will lower their performance statistics. The times you are kicked out also limit what games you can play, so unless there is a 'training' single player mode, I think I just bought it to support them developing Linux clients. Too bad.

      • by malakai (136531) on Wednesday March 31, 2010 @04:25AM (#31684364) Journal

        There's a tutorial now, and an auto-matching making service for solo players ( you get dumped with 9 others into a 5v5).

        • by Alystair (617164)
          I fully support watching the tutorial and reading strategy guides online (the ones from DOTA might apply as well , however as it stands the "match making" system still requires tweaking and can cause much angst. I'd recommend playing the low level public games if you don't know what you're doing and wait until they fix the quirks in match making, as it stands public games work perfectly but MM games have issues with leavers.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Celarnor (835542)

      I had a closed beta invite early on, but the community is angry, rude and just spoil the game.

      Echo this. I was lucky enough to get into the closed beta a few weeks ago, when one of my friends sent me an invite key. There was no tutorial when I started (though there's one now), so I just went into a no stats game. The people there, and in most HoN games, seem to be just generally mean, elitist people who votekick at a moment's notice when another player doesn't exhibit some tidbit of knowledge that they're supposed to have acquired. This is really bad in HoN, since those votekicks affect your abi

      • Wow, that's the complete opposite to LoL. No vote kick, just a vote surrender.

        If you bail from the game, you can't reenter a new game until the one you initially entered has finished. You can reenter the game you were in though.

        Seems a bit elitist for me, I think I'll stick to LoL then.

        • by Celarnor (835542)
          There's a vote to concede in HoN, too, but that seems to be used more when people leave the game and don't reconnect, or towards the end when the winner is obvious, not so much as a "The hell with this team, we're done" button.

          I had never heard about LoL until after this thread--probably something for me to look into. I like the 'dungeon crawler' feel, but as the GGP said, the community is quite noxious, and it's not really the type of game one can learn by soloing everything on the map in practice mode
      • by Grym (725290)

        Echo this. I was lucky enough to get into the closed beta a few weeks ago, when one of my friends sent me an invite key. There was no tutorial when I started (though there's one now), so I just went into a no stats game. The people there, and in most HoN games, seem to be just generally mean, elitist people who votekick at a moment's notice when another player doesn't exhibit some tidbit of knowledge that they're supposed to have acquired. This is really bad in HoN, since those votekicks affect your ability

        • by Zironic (1112127) on Wednesday March 31, 2010 @08:27AM (#31685912)

          The reputation is well deserved, and it's not in "good fun". The problem is that DotA is designed in such a way that if one team get's a few kills in the beginning, they're almost guaranteed to win. It's impossible for the other 4 people on the team to compensate for the 5th bad player because he's feeding the other team such an extraordinary amount of gold and xp.

          In most games playing 4+noob vs 5 is basically like playing 4v5, but with DotA it's more like playing 4v6 once you account for all the extra stuff the other team gets. And since people don't like losing, they get very hostile when they realize that they're in such a situation.

          You used the example of a 5v5 basketball pickup game, I used to play those all the time and it didn't matter if one of the players was a noob, what's the worst that can happen? You're never worse off in basketball by playing 4+noob rather then 4 and eventually the player will learn. I've never heard of such a thing as someone insulting new players in conventional sports and if that's the norm in your neighborhood you should really consider moving somewhere where people aren't pricks.

        • In a sense you're both right.

          The nature of the game really punishes a team with a bad player, and good players understandably don't want to put up with it.

          However, that also gives you an environment that most new players won't want to play in.

    • by erikina (1112587)
      I'm not sure about spoil, but definitely leave a bad impression. I started playing Heroes of Newerth without any DotA experience, and I can say the learning curve was STEEP, and people definitely hurled a lot of abuse at me (well, I was "letting the team down" and in hindsight, ruined a lot of games (they're normally 5 people vs 5, so one person learning is a huge disadvantage). That said, after I learnt how to play; and my stats got lower (which reflected the fact I was bad, the game became a lot more enjo
    • I had the same experience. I stopped playing because the players were douchebags.

      I think the game lends itself to that kind of behaviour though: their score is based on how well the team does, and if you die a lot the team suffers and therefore they suffer. It is very unfriendly for noobs, even on "noob games".

      The game seemed cool enough, but the people were the worst I've ever experienced. It was simply pervasive.

    • It's a great game, and I've had fun with it since they posted the closed beta on Slashdot last year. I'm the sort of player who has the occasional really, really good game - and that makes the complete failures more tolerable. I agree, the community gets pretty worked up over the tiniest things - and may your chosen diety be with you if you have more deaths than kills. It speaks well to the game that the community is so passionate about it, but that may be a disadvantage to new players.

      You might want to h
    • by TOGSolid (1412915)
      True story. I gave HoN a shot in closed beta and was immediately treated to the same level assholery that plagues DotA and kept me from ever actually wanting to play that game online. It's hard to enjoy a game when you're being kicked for "being a noob" all of the damn time. HoN was flooded pretty bad right from the start with that crap, and even LoL and Demigod got inundated with it. It's part of the reason that I only ever played Demigod and DotA vs bots.

      The DotA and DotA clone communities make Xbo

    • by brkello (642429)
      It is interesting. I played DotA and it has to have the most vile people ever playing the game. It seems to attract the "elitist" type with anger issues.

      Eve's community (at least the forums) is pretty legendary for being jerks. People are encouraged to quit and give up their stuff. DotA (and its clones) make Eve look like a bunch of cuddly bunnies that give free hugs.
  • Really? I had to do a double-take, both to see if this was in Idle, and then to see if this actually Slashdot, and not some mocked-up promotional. I wouldn't be so grouchy about this if it wasn't for the fact that this hit the front page, and is, relatively, a minor game.
    • but ... but ... it's on linux!
    • by lePooch (1553929)
      Shameless? How is news of this release any different from news on the latest release of Ubuntu or Apache that usually makes the front page? Its all software, and this IS the Gaming section of Slashdot, so it is entirely appropriate that this appears here.

      I wouldn't be so grouchy about this if it wasn't for the fact that this hit the front page, and is, relatively, a minor game.

      Just a glance at, say, the Apple section of the website shows that stuff like the release of a MINOR browser on the iPhone gets its own article [slashdot.org]. Why shouldn't the release of a game get a quick front page blurb, especially because the Warcraft map that this

    • I did a double-take to check that it wasn't either a World of Warcraft clone or expansion. From the website graphic design to the gameplay video, it's not hard to guess where their inspiration came from.

      • by delinear (991444)
        Well since both DoTA and WoW have their origins in Warcraft III, it's hardly surprising that they'd have a similar style. I guess they could have done something different just to avoid the obvious comparisons, but that might have changed the feel of the game, and since Warcraft was ripped off from Warhammer, which ripped off everything else in the process, it's far too incestuous a mess for anyone to begin to unravel :)
  • Supports Linux (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Andrioid (1755390) on Wednesday March 31, 2010 @04:11AM (#31684260)
    I've been playing the beta for a few months on my 64-bit Linux platform that usually gets shafted by game developers. If you liked DotA Allstars on W3x, you will like Heroes of Newerth. Those who played the classic DotA will find this "flashy" and imbalanced, fun though. I also encourage Linux gamers to support those few independent game developers that do support our platform by buying the game.
    • by atomic777 (860023)
      Definitely. Supporting a studio like S2 that independently publishers, and one that develops for linux, is like a double win -- I know that my dollars are going mostly towards the developers, designers and artists, not a bloated layer of marketers, sales, bizdev, etc. etc. that only drive up the cost of most games.
  • Its funny this as the announcement of the open beta also co-insides with the UK LAN i39 held by Multiplay http://www.multiplay.co.uk/ [multiplay.co.uk] where they are holding the first tournament for the game with a potential prize fund of £6250 approx $9400 which is sponsored by S2.
  • by Martian_Kyo (1161137) on Wednesday March 31, 2010 @04:16AM (#31684302)

    This worth the news simply cause this is one of the few decent looking games for linux.
    Any linux purist (i.e. someone who has no dual boot) who likes computer (as opposed to console) games should try this, yes all ten of you.
    If not for any other reason then to encourage more developers to do this.
    If more developers do this it will indirectly improve code quality, cause programming a multi platform game/software requires a certain level of code quality.
    I hope linux and windows client here are developed separately.

    I still prefer League Of Legends, mainly for it's more lighthearted design.

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Korin43 (881732)
      I'm definitely interested. I like computer games, but gaming isn't worth the pain of using Windows, or the annoyance of dual booting.

      I don't really see why developers don't make more games cross platform. Aren't there OpenGL libraries that will work with no changes on Windows + Mac + Linux? I know I've seen sound libraries that do that, so take those two together, and don't write crappy code and your game will be cross platform by default.
      • by sgtrock (191182)

        This guy doesn't deserve a Troll mod at all. He is just presenting a his position and view of the current state in a polite way.

        • by brkello (642429)
          He's also stating stuff that he knows nothing about (porting). While he doesn't deserve troll, he isn't saying anything interesting or insightful.
          • Re: (Score:1, Offtopic)

            by Korin43 (881732)
            Was I wrong about it? The thing I thought about after I wrote that was that certain games (FPS genre) need the kind of optimization you can't do in a cross-platform way, but that would just be optimization within certain methods.
    • by Trebawa (1461025)
      It's nice that it's available on Linux, but I still have to play it on Windows because my underspec'd computer can't handle OpenGL 2.0. The Windows version uses DirectX, so it would be nice if the Linux version supported SDL.
    • Re: (Score:1, Offtopic)

      by npsimons (32752) *

      Any linux purist (i.e. someone who has no dual boot) who likes computer (as opposed to console) games should try this, yes all ten of you.
      If not for any other reason then to encourage more developers to do this.

      Answer me just one question first: is this a true port or did they "port" it using WINE? All due respect to developers who even acknowledge Linux (then again, in this day and age, how can you *not* acknowledge Linux?), and to the WINE developers, but I'm not willing to run some half-assed, DirectX l

  • HoN is a game which refused to change the game to something new and instead decided that every single decision made by the creators of DotA was sacred.

    Does things like last-hitting your own minions an not scaling casters in any meaningful way with money really improve the game?
    Heck, they don't even let ranged heroes get life-steal.
    The most annoying thing is that getting killed still makes you not only be denied experience, give the opponent team money and experience and increased lane control and increased

    • by Zironic (1112127)

      Well, it's hardly surprising. A lot of those mechanics were due to how the core WC3 engine worked, and HoN is made by people who when realizing that their own games arn't very popular, wanted to make an exact copy of the rather popular DotA.

      League of Legends on the other hand is intended to be a sequel and the developers seems to hope to create something better then DotA rather then just making a clone of something they already did.

    • uh, there are plenty of changes to this game. Orb stacking change, new heroes, new unique abilities never seen in DoTA (Zephyr), courier abilities, reconnecting, stats, matchmaking, maps, new graphics for well known models, lots of balancing with items. Also your argument (I would say QQing) about casters not scaling in any meaningful way is bullshit. 1) Casters are more powerful early compared to carries and are usually support. 2) Carries (usually agility heroes) are underpowered at the beginning of th
      • uh, there are plenty of changes to this game. Orb stacking change, new heroes, new unique abilities never seen in DoTA (Zephyr), courier abilities, reconnecting, stats, matchmaking, maps, new graphics for well known models, lots of balancing with items.

        None of those are significant gameplay changes. The closest to a real gameplay change in your list is that orbs stack, and probably the only reason they never did in any Warcraft III maps is because that's how the game engine worked and there was no way to change that.

    • by D J Horn (1561451)

      Have you even played HoN? It doesn't seem like it... or maybe just a couple Easy Mode games?

      "Does things like last-hitting your own minions an not scaling casters in any meaningful way with money really improve the game?"

      What? I'm not even sure what you're trying to say. Are you saying denying against a caster enemy is pointless because they aren't as gold dependent? If so, that's not true. While it may not hurt a caster as much as a carry, it's far from pointless.

      "Heck, they don't even let ranged heroes get life-steal."

      Huh? There are numerous items that grant life stealing to ranged heroes. In fact only one of the life stealing items is melee only.

      "The most annoying thing is that getting killed still makes you not only be denied experience, give the opponent team money and experience and increased lane control and increased ganking opportunities, it also makes you lose money."

      If the penalty for dying was any less tha

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by caeos (1170773)

      Beta tester since release, played it fairly casually however.

      I don’t want to get into a big discussion on various game play aspects, all ill say is that many aspects of DotA/HoN that seem tedious are in fact fairly core parts of the game play that add depth. I think there is room for a few games that are not streamlined/simplified to appeal to the widest audience possible.

      As for the community, elitistism is definitely rampant, but I don’t believe DotA was any different. These games are not casua

      • Re: (Score:1, Troll)

        by Zironic (1112127)

        Well, when you don't have to spend any time on game design or art direction because you're ripping everything off I suppose you have quite a lot of extra time to spend on networking features. A lot of the features also comes from the fact everything is centrally hosted which is not something most companies want to pay for.

        A lot of popular multiplayer games were at their core designed for singleplayer, the game engines of Counterstrike, Call of Duty, Bad Company etc get most of their sales from people that j

    • Most of the stuff you list is just incorrect.

      Last-hitting your own creeps is something that adds strategic depth and skill to the game. It makes laning much more competitive.

      The reason casters don't scale late game is because they're extremely powerful early game. A hero like Pyromancer or Thunderbringer can kill half the heroes in the game with their spell combinations early to mid game. If there were no late game downside to picking heroes like this none would pick anything else.

      And rang
    • by noric (1203882)
      I have played hundreds of games of WC3 dota, a thousand games of heroes of newerth, and I have to say your perspective resembles that of other noobs who misunderstand the game. Particularly, this statement is just plain wrong:

      HoN and DotA on high levels means standing around behind your opponents reach and shooting your own minions, games just drag on and on since no one dares make a move or they will lose what little cash they have scrambled together.

      The more you play the hon, the more aggressive it gets.

  • I've never seen as much nerd rage as I saw in the few matches that I played this game. Seemingly this game is what happens when trolls actually participate in the community.
    • by andrewd18 (989408)

      Seemingly this game is what happens when trolls actually participate in the community.

      No, you've just stumbled onto a community of trolls. I've been playing the closed beta since early last year, and while I give mad props to the developers for supporting Linux (even 64-bit!), I don't feel motivated to buy the game. HoN isn't fun unless I'm playing an in-house game with people I know, because the rest of the HoN community is too worried about their precious e-peens.

  • Those of you mods who are browsing at -1 and wondering why there are so many negative moderations goign on, as well as several trolls blasting the game one way or the other, be warned that people who play Heroes of Newearth generally have it out for the people who play League of Legends, and vice versa. The HoN'ers think that LoL'ers are spoiled kids who don't appreciate true deep, balanced gameplay and need someone to explain how you actually make a good game. If you've ever dealt with hardcore EVE playe
  • Anyone know of a link to download the client before open beta signup?
  • I received my heroes of newerth beta key last July, and have been playing regularly ever since. I have played hundreds of games on both the windows and linux clients. The linux client works great and I suggest you try this game out :-).
  • S2 Games made "Savage" years ago and it has team play style FPS combined with RTS. It runs on Linux and you can download it here: http://www.newerth.com/ [newerth.com] There are a lot of comments about Heros being unfriendly to new players, but that's not a problem with Savage. You'll just suck. :)
  • I have been playing HoN since the early beta began. I never played DOTA or any other game like this before so the learning curve was pretty rough for me. It took about 20 games before I really felt that I had a good grasp of the basics (games take anywhere from 15-45 mins). A few of the pros: 1. fast paced game 2. pretty good graphics 3. quite stable 4. great online play 5. TONS of strategies to use (offensive/defensive counters) 6. Lots of heros to pick from 7. Good friends lists, built in Voice servers
  • I didn't get into Warcraft3 (that's where DOTA is from, right?) because of the "heroes" or whatever they had that made gameplay immensely boring.

    How does DOTA compare to say, Starcraft? That's my favorite RTS to this point... does it have a high learning curve?

    I'll check it out if it's worth checking out. S2 made Savage2 and I really love that game.

    • by Shabla (1657771)
      Yeah, the learning curve is pretty hard. If you are a casual player this might not be a game for you. The concept: This is played like a RTS, but at the beginning of the game you chose a hero, this will be the only unit you have to control (some heroes have additional units to fight with them though -> need micro-ing skill -> harder for new player). Each team of 5 players starts out in their base, the goal is to destroy the "fortress" of the other team (a big building with a lot of health). Each base
  • This game is awesome. I've been playing for ~4 months (regularly), I had never played DotA before, but I got hooked. Of course there's a lot of assholes, you WILL get pubstomped, the learning curve is VERY steep (60 heroes ATM, 4 different skills for each, 117 different items, alot of different strategy you have to know, ...). My tips: - Don't listen to the jerks. Somebody talkshit you ? Reply with kind words, he'll be mad. People will call you retard if you don't know what to buy/how to play, just ask the
  • You know, I downloaded this last night. Even though my Linux machine has hardware perfectly capable of gaming (it's my fastest machine right now, as I use it for all my desktop use), I normally keep a Windows machine seperate to play games on. Seeing this have a Linux client peeked my interest though. I downloaded it to my Ubuntu 9.10 machine and spun it up.

    And it worked great. Downloaded as a single .sh installer. Sadly Ubuntu apparently by default associates .sh with gedit so I had to drop the a term

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