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Dota 2 introduces limited-hero, “high behavior score” matchmaking for newcomers

New players will see the return of limited hero pools and will be matched with players proven to play nice.

Dota 2 Blog/Valve

Dota 2 is now a little bit less overwhelming for new players, as Valve have added two new features for those entering their first multiplayer matches. The first is a limited hero selection, and the second involves matching players with better behavior scores together.

New players will be limited to a selection of 20 heroes for the players’ first 25 matches. Limited hero availability addresses new players getting overwhelmed by the 114-hero roster that’s otherwise immediately available to all players.

The heroes available for new players are:

  • Axe
  • Bristleback
  • Clinkz
  • Death Prophet
  • Dragon Knight
  • Jakiro
  • Juggernaut
  • Lich
  • Lion
  • Luna
  • Ogre Magi
  • Phantom Assassin
  • Shadow Shaman
  • Sniper
  • Sven
  • Tidehunter
  • Viper
  • Witch Doctor
  • Wraith King
  • Zeus

Many of these heroes are bulky with easy-to-understand kits (Axe, Wraith King, Bristleback), supports with a balance between utility and survivability (Witch Doctor, Lich, Lion), or carries with fairly understandable and achievable carry progress (Luna, Sniper, Death Prophet). Overall, they require a low skill floor to understand, though with any hero in Dota, that doesn’t necessarily imply they’re easy to master.

Valve also intends on improving these players’ social environment by matching new players up with ones who have been in the game for a while and have good behavior reports. In their own words:

It is especially important for a new player to have a good social experience while they are first trying to learn the game. The matchmaking system will now ensure that new players will play with and against appropriately-skilled players that also have a track record of good behavior.

This means that they’ll likely be automatically evaluating seasoned players’ combined number of bad-behavior reports and good-behavior commends and working to pair new players from there. It’s definitely questionable to test the patience of veteran players, but Valve is hoping that these players are already proven to have necessary patience to help new players learn.