Since time immemorial, there were two names in the MOBA (Multiplayer Online Battle Arena) scene. These names are League of Legends and DoTA – both of these games have become so popular and widespread to be the de-facto MOBA standard by which all others are judged, neatly splitting the genre’s fan base between them.


Into this highly competitive arena EA now introduces Dawngate – a fresh take on the MOBA genre developed by Waystone Games. What makes Dawngate unique, then? How would a newcomer be able to face off against giants that have become almost synonymous with the genre? What does Dawngate do that hasn’t been done before?

First of all, before we even get to the gameplay itself, it is important to understand Waystone Games’ dedication to the player base. In Dawngate, every battle and every shaper (“Shapers” being the heroes players will control) is story driven. Not only that but the story itself is community-driven – several times a week, a graphic-novel will be released, detailing an event or occurrence in the world of Dawngate. Players will then have a chance to directly affect the outcome by playing the game and voting on the way the story should progress – better yet, playing with the Shaper involved in the story will add extra weight to a vote. To sum it up – dynamic, community-driven story.

Second, gone are the pre-set roles for each Shaper. Instead, Dawngate allows every Shaper to perform every role. Although some will be better at certain roles than others, the final choice is up to the player. In theory, a player can play the same Shaper in different matches and take on a different role each time, even changing equipment and skill loadouts to match the role chosen. To put it shortly – a dynamic and adaptive class system offering players much more freedom in playing their favorite Shaper.


Last but not least, we have the gameplay and arena. A lot of Dawngate will feel familiar to MOBA veterans, although some difference is present even here. For example, instead of the traditional 3-lane approach, Dawngate has opted to have just two lanes. Then there is the importance of the miniboss, the way the “Parasite” creature grows and reacts to the actions of players and even the jungle itself as examples of previously-existing concepts, upgraded to the next level.

In conclusion, during the hands-on I’ve had with the game, I can honestly say that I’ve enjoyed it immensely. It felt like a MOBA should, with the hectic action spilling all over and the constant strike-and-counterstrike dance between teams. It also felt new and fresh enough to be interesting. To top it all off, an open beta is available, starting May 16 with no limit announced. Every MOBA fan should definitely use that opportunity to try out Dawngate.

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