Dota 2 custom games problem

November 17, 2015

I would like to discuss the problem with player journey in Dota 2. We will use an example of trying to play a custom game called Dota 10vs10 in Dota 2 platform.

Problem: way too many steps to simply start playing the game! It totals to 7 steps just to start the game.

Solution: reduce the journey to 2-3 steps.

So, here is the problem in more details.

Step 1

So you come to custom games, choose Dota 10vs10. The first step here is to press PLAY DOTA 10vs10:


Step 2

Then you are taken to the lobby, where you have to wait for other players, to fill the 20 slots.


Step 3

Then you need to accept the game. Why? I already pressed play game and I just want to start playing as fast as possible!!!


Step 4

Now, you wait some more, until everyone presses Accept. Valve likes to keep you waiting. :)


Here goes another problem: if someone declines or drags long enough and does not press anything…you get back to the lobby and do this again!


Step 5

Then comes the loading screen. You get excited.


Step 6

But, well, you shouldn’t have. Let’s wait some more for people to load.


The problem at this step is that if someone, even if just 1 guy, fails to load, YOU START THE PROCESS FROM THE BEGINNING! It should just proceed to the game anyway, because many people drop out / leave throughout the game anyway.

Step 7

Ok, you thought you’d finally start a game by now? Hell, no! Let’s torture players some more. Here comes another step: assigning players to teams. Host needs to press the LOCK & START button to speed this up. But, as many online players are retards and f*cked your moms, hosts don’t press it. Then people start mindlessly pressing on the right pane, and it stops the timer completely. Argh!!!!!!!!!!


Step 8

Then finally, the game starts. You choose a hero and play.



Reduce the process to ideally 2 steps.

Step 1: Press ‘PLAY DOTA 10VS10′

Step 2: Loading screen. During loading, show some content to entertain users while they wait.

Step 3: Game starts

That’s it! No need for this monstrous complexity and extra steps. Most players just want to press the button and start playing!

And if someone wants to have a level of control in the game setup, like assign players and so on, then they can start the game in alternative way. Like, ‘Play 10VS10 CUSTOM’.


There is a similar problem with normal dota 2 games. When you press search games, then you have to also accept or decline an offered game. You have already chose all your setup for the kind of matches you want to get. Just start the game, valve! It’s an extra unnecessary step that should be removed.

Happy gaming!

Written by: Alexander Tazh



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