Why HOTS failed

HOTS has probably the most fun core game mechanics.
It is easy to pick up, and hard to master.
It has fantastic art and graphics.
The heroes and skills are fun and creative.

So why did it fail?

BAD leadership.

Blizzard should have invested into developing their own Dota when it was clear how successful Dota1 was back in Warcraft III’s golden years. This cost the game tons of players, and the company piles of cash.

Later on Blizzard leadership completely f.d up the marketing for the game.
People who would have been interested just did not get the message that HOTS is here.

Leadership did not make people understand what HOTS is about.
Everyone thought that HOTS is a game for idiots.
And while it’s partly true, as it’s much easier to get into the game than into LoL or Dota2, HOTS is also more complex at high level play than those two games. So people who thought they are good at mobas, or people who were actually good at mobas did not take HOTS seriously.

Leadership tried to push some bulls.t Politically Correct ideology. Playing HOTS is (was?) like living in some communist state, where you have to report your neighbor before they report you.
Blizzard designed an awful report system with an awful automatic banning algorithm at the end, with an awful customer support not caring. Which resulted in tons of people getting banned and turning away from the game. Including many of the top players.

Leadership does not understand math or their own game, and thought that they could design an algorithm that could reliably and justly award people with MMR based on a handful of metrics.

Bad matchmaking. Smurfing, initial screwups in the ranked system, and we could go on, but it all boils down to bad leadership.

So go home, Blizzard. Clean your room. Fire the failers, don’t shuffle them around between your projects like the catholic church.
Stop basing your hiring and promotion decisions on nepotism or affirmative action. Go for talent, knowledge and hard work.


HOTS was a really good thing gone wrong.

The problem with this game it’s that it was too team oriented, and there’s too many ret@rds on the planet.

So they decided to punish the people who loved the game but hated the ret@rds, while actually encouraging the ret@rds. The reporting system was and is utter sh*t, and so many people quit the game because of it.

Now it’s too late to try and do anything to save this game, cause it’s already dead. BUT…it could’ve been a really nice, fun game. If only you’d listened to the people, Blizzard.


Yep this game is far too team based. You can’t just get yourself fed and carry like in other mobas. Like I just had a game where I was 5th highest dmg as tank. 10, 9, 7 and 6 were my allies.

Gul’dan was 9th, below their Brightwing.

What rock did these people crawl out from? Literally can’t say a word to them without risking getting banned.

In a game where the matchmaking results in stomp or be stomped there should be a surrender. Not that the people being stomped will actually surrender. They probably don’t know they’re losing until the game ends.

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Ok that looks suspicious, but without analysis of the replay it’s not obvious where the problem was. DDs need to be enabled by tanks and supports and in some comps it’s hardly possible. You can just take a look at stats and blame DDs for low damage, and it can be fair, but it also can be tank’s fault that DDs don’t have space to do damage. Tunel vision, jumping into enemy backline, chasing as tanks - I’ve seen (and done) it all. Then end result may be tank having top damage, but it’s nothing to be proud of.


Just watched the replay. 2 were trash heroes (Dva, Butcher) and Guldan said he was drunk. All thought sight of an enemy was a signal for teamfight.

If you thought I was proud I wasn’t. I didn’t say I was or imply it. Having top damage as a tank means something is going horribly wrong.

Hate to say it but your summary lacks information that comes off just wrong.

1st off: This game is based of the Starcraft 2 engine.
So alot of updates to this game could been used from SC2. They didn’t do that.

2nd off: Quality started shifting from amazing to meh. When Dustin Bowler left.
Dustin kept the competitive level high and was the reason we got fun alternate play heroes like Abathur. When he left the quality was still good but inconstitent.
Don;t get me wrong… we got more themed stuff and alot of stuff became accisable for all… but some things were blegh.

3rd off: Abuse of the systems.
You can go politics or smurfing is bad (wich it is) but you didn’t adress the abuse of the main systems of the game.
How ranking worked and how the report system worked to be abused.
Minus the unbalancing of heroes… sometimes or broken patches being abused by ranked players…

The report system wasn’t just used to ban any form of negativity.
It wasnt being abused because players didn’t want negative talk.
it was abused to bump players out of ranked matches or to troll players.
This player horribly outskilled me. “Report for abusive chat” Ooh I have 20 smurf acounts? “Report for abusive” And silenced… Haha now I can win again!

That’s how Smurfing and Abusive chat was ABUSED in the past. Now or days it’s fixed but it ran rampat for almost half a year.

I do agree on your marketing.
HGC and The game’s marketing were “weak” to say the least.
The only way fun hype reached like Mechastorm was to people who loved the game… but the problem remained that HOTS’s competitve scene was way too restricted due to Blizzzard not advertising 3rd party communitties and such!

  1. Very bad kit. I’ve seen mmorpgs mobile with more skills than the hots kit. We do not have items, we do not have selective skills and as passive in the same active space is pathetic.
  2. TTK took out all the tanks and healers. Low TTK becomes a more important damage blast, and future-focused classes are created less effective. Result: excess murderers and lack of tanks and healers.
  3. Lack of maps. Several maps have been removed from the rotation. That sucks. The proposal of hots that was diversification became monotonous.
  4. Poor graphics engine. Everyone knows that the HOTs graphics engine sucked at first. The game already started dead when they reused the starcraft II engine instead of using Overwatch, for example.


Non of these complaints makes sense.

Very bad Kit. You compare it to MMORPGS. Not other MOBA’s
Also if you would compare it to LoL and DoTA2 I would say: “They streamlined it to focus more on combat and strategy.”
This is a flavor. Now if you say: “The flavor can be enhanced or it was better when talents could make your hero adapt” Then I would say yes.

2: Yes they made too much assassins I’ll give you that but what does TTK means?
Overall I feel like I am missing information.

3: Lack of maps isn’t a problem. Look at the competitors that is DoTA 2 and LoL.
1 map… 2 sides… ALL THE TIME. It is true some maps been removed from rotation when I found nothing wrong with them. (Cept old Dead mines)
However now with Dead mines gone again (my favorite map to play on since it’s so different) and Black Hearts Bay (The only map where the objective is decided by players) And the rework of Garden of Terror (Not a fan)
It feels like the control of the map is slipping from how players do things.
It seems like they are trying to focus SOLELY on getting more teamfights insted of strategy.

4 Poor graphics.
Yea it’s SC2 engine but hey it works. Graphics don’t always sell games.
I also love you claim they should have used the Overwatch engine… wich makes no sense. Overwatch engine is made for a FPS type game so using it here would cause more glitches. Let alone it has been in development since Heart of the Swarm.
Also Overwatch’s engine WASN’T done when Heroes of the Storm came out.
You wanted them to release the game on a glitchy engine that the gaame isn’t designed for?

But if you feel like the graphics should be upgraded… yea it can if they keep tweaking the engine, but without SC2 getting upgrades… HOTS won’t get much either to the engine unless they modify it even more.

The game wasn’t on steam. People hate battlenet client,so blizzard ended up pushing this as a side game to wow players.

Not saying this is your case (without seeing actual replay I cannot say much), but often when tank got highest damage it’s because he actually don’t know how to play tank. They can’t peel properly, they don’t protect their backline, they don’t know when and how to engage.

It’s just simple logic - longer you are alive, more damage you deal. Tanks tend to survive more, especially when enemy team focuses on your DDs first and you are unable to CC them and punish them for that. So over time you build up higher damage with your small hits than DD is able to pull off because they die before they can even cast their combos.

So first question to ask when you end up with the highest damage as a tank is if you gave your DDs good opportunities to pull off their combos or not.

Edit: with guldan on a team peeling is especially important, because he does poke damage. If you engage aggressively without letting Guldan to poke the enemy beforehand a bit, you will most likely lose the fight, because Guldan won’t be able to burst them in time.

Only one and single reason:


[kinda bad had to write, whatever else, the post engine doesn’t allow one word only with spaces between letters… :/]

It is rather normal to have high hero dmg with e.g. a Diablo und his lvl 7 spell dmg talent (or siege dmg with a Johanna). And yes, too much engage focus of the tank player can be the problem. However, most of the players prefer to play assassin and a solid portion of them just do not know how. They thrive against badly positioned opponents and get blasted as soon as the other team actually knows how to play.
I play about half of all the games as a tank and i can ensure you that peeling for this type of players is impossible. Even if they occassionally stay in range of the abilities of their tank (which usually tells you if the assassin player knows what he is doing), they do not step back after peeling. They think that every action of their tank is an invitation to engage. This is also the type of players that engage in a team fight before their tank is there and blame him for their death afterwards. Of course theses assassins end up with high death counts and low dmg numbers compared to their tank.

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Good point. That can be also a problem, I didn’t want to sound like “tank is always wrong”, that’s definitely not always true :slight_smile: Regarding “going into fight before the tank” - sometimes I tilt and that too, usually when I see that tank wastes one good opportunity to engage after another, and somehow hope he will follow me ad do something :smiley: I usually pay hard for that, but well, competitive games are intense sometimes :slight_smile:

And why shouldn’t you :slight_smile: There are a couple of assassins that excel at engaging (e.g. Maeiv) and it is certainly the right choice if its a safe gank. However, a good assassin player

  • knows when and what to dodge
  • and stays in the range of his tank when trying for a quick kill or additional poke.

Well, first you say that bad assassins engage before tank, then you say there exist assassins which are good in engaging, which I agree with, but we were obviously taking about assassins which are NOT good to engage with :wink:

I said before their tank “is there” :sunglasses:, meaning players that seek a fight while their tank is still on the way and blaming the tank player afterwards when it does not work out.
While there are many situations when one should usually wait for the tank to engage (e.g. during a 5v5 poking around the objective), there are of course plenty of exceptions and a good assassin player will benefit from them. Even a Kealthas can iniate a fight if someone is badly positioned and in range of his stun; he just should not do it, if there is no follow-up (e.g. because Muradin just jumped out and Uther’s heal is on CD). On the other hand, there is no need for a tank to expose his backline, if his team is currently winning in the poke war.

Being a person that played from Alpha to now non stop and I asked my IRL/online friends who all quit and I can try to share my opinion as well. Originally HOTS itself bragged their moba game was “fast and 10-15 minutes or less”. That was the best time. Now they said "we want the games to be longer and here we are 20-40 minute games. This is when rage quitters came out. It was very rare before when the games were promised 10-15 minutes. Its super rare to win with an afk partner.
The soaking phase while being unique felt broken from the start. Early PVP kills XP got nerfed into the ground (there was a early pvp meta for a short time but got gutted which was the perfect HOTS game IMO). The game has “sympathy bonus” which breaks a game from pure skill… could you imagine if you were watching SuperBowl and the referee was like… yeah… this team didn’t earn 14 points like the other team that is winning… so we are going to give the losing team 14 points per touchdown now and the good team fumbles once and the sympathy losing team wins… so broken in concept. Why don’t they do that in OverWatch too than with capture the objective or escorting the payload? It really feels like a “participation trophy concept”. Most good players lose (and give up on this game) because their team fumbles once late game which should never happen to the better team. Objectives on maps such as DK are broken AF. My team got the Dragon 4 times straght and always rushed with Dragon and almost got to the core. Enemy team gets 1 Dragon smashes all forts in 1 lane, gets to the core and/or wins… This game literally punishes good players by match making them with worst players on your team to “balance”. Best example is like a senior in HS football teamed up with jr high school kids vs. All freshman-junior kids. The MVP screen should have never existed. It taught (the ego/mr./mrs Know it alls) how to play the game wrong. Azmodan just soaking top lane all day while objective is up and never helps team, but we end up losing and he gets mvp. That makes this person think they are better than everyone. I could go on but I doubt anyone is willing to read all this lol.

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" why failed?"…because not exist humans eich get smart decions in right time( i mean about Blizzard team)…and + almost whole player base.
The game be re worked and improved in future. And everything yhis happened to mow from almosy 4 years…because Blizzard team must work non stop in something.
Its normal for our human race and gameing industry.
In 2021 year, the game be better.
I can gave you for an axample EvE online, this game is on 15 years, and his developers non stop improveing and re working. I played this game avarage 1 year.
I stoped because os boring and PvP sometime is unfair.

Blizzard needs to lay off more employees, especially the ones that made this game. what a bunch of screwups.

Problem is ONLY ONE your PERSONAL rank determine OTHER 4 players…

Until the good players get better rank rewards from winning or less from lost.
It won’t improve.