Which is the most-played MOBA? LoL and DotA 2 make conflicting claims

DotA 2 vs LoL

By on April 12, 2013 at 10:24 am

Yesterday, a company called DFC Intelligence produced a report which stated that DotA 2 was the most-played “core” PC title in the West, passing League of Legends in popularity throughout the first quarter of 2013. DFC quoted a number of source including XFire, and went on to claim that MOBA players far outweighed even MMO heavyweights like World of Warcraft.

Overnight, however, Riot have challenged these findings. A Riot spokesperson revealed that League of Legends sees “over 500,000 peak concurrent players every day on just the EU West shard,” which doesn’t even take into account the number of US and China players. Meanwhile, Valve’s Steamgraph shows that the highest all-time number of DotA 2 players is 325,879 — vastly below that offered by LoL.

“You can see how we would have some issues with the accuracy of this report,” said Riot’s spokesperson.

DFC — who are not actually affiliated with Valve — claimed that the discrepancy was due to them only tracking “key Western markets”.

Source: Games Industry International

19 comments (Leave your own)

Really? they used XFire as a source of number of players on a game?

Personally I would never make such a bold statement without actually asking the actual companies. I am sure Riot does not intend to keep secret how many players it has because it is a HUGE number and would be free publicity.


Science v Religion, Boxers v Briefs, Dota v LoL.

All arguments that really don’t really fucking matter. You follow what you want, you enjoy what you want. All this “NAH WE HAZ MOAR PLAYAZ” shit just seems juvenile.

And Science, Boxers & Dota > * IMO :P



The boxer vs briefs thing has already been solved by the invention of the boxer brief.


I would have guessed that LoL was much bigger than Dota2 just because it’s been around for so long and has built up it’s audience

Both of these games seem too inaccessible to me, a person without much time to devote to learning a new type of game or slog it out in long matches. These are like the complete opposite of “casual” games right?



Eh, they can be quite casual. Most of my DotA 2 hours are from roflstomping bots just to kill some time. I’ve only played LoL a few times but it seemed quite easy to pick up.



Sure they can be quite casual, if you don’t mind being heavily abused by pro-kids for not playing meta in a normal match.


My summary of players from both games, from what I have witnessed:

LoL players: Oh you aren’t doing well? GTFO noob you suck we don’t want you here.
DoTA players: Oh you aren’t doing well? Here try doing these things and buying these items.

I have played DoTA far more then LoL and the playerbase for DoTA is a lot more welcoming.

Edit: I also know of several LoL players who have upwards of 10+ accounts, only because they like getting to max lvl, making a new account and then rolling over all the new players whilst abusing them.


There is no difference in the community between either games. I used to play a lot of LoL now I play a lot of DoTA. If anything it’s worse on DoTA because people abuse you over voip rather than just chat.


This just in, DFC reports that after much research it shows figures for games.on.net activity/page hits far outweighs that of Twitter for the first quarter of 2013. Figures primarily sourced by pulling numbers out of a hat.


as an aside, Has Dota 2 been officially released yet? or is it still in “beta”


why cant lol release all champions all for free just like dota 2, i’m sick of free champion week rotation, and i’ve spent $500 bucks on it lol :D i’m SAD


While I agree that comparing LoL and DotA2 is about as productive as comparing apples and oranges to each other, I think trying to find which community is ‘friendlier/worse’ isn’t possible, and highly subjective.

I’ve only ever played DotA2 when I have at least 2 friends on, and as of late, its almost impossible to not exceed a group of 5 at any given time. Obviously this would put me in a far more supported situation than when I play League with one other friend at most. Even in a group of 4 with 1 random, 9/10 if things go bad, the random will shout profanity and cry to the other team that the ‘team’ was bad, and they weren’t at fault in any shape or form (even if you can call out all the mistakes/stupid things that did during the game), which of course, is possible. Adversely, I can run with the exact same team and do well, and have the random crawling up the butt of the carry and singing their praises.

Both communities, from my own experience, are just as bad as each other, and players love to avoid taking any responsibility in a teams failure, and will crucify others for it just as easily as they’ll claim total responsibility for a teams success, or sing praises to whoever ‘carries’ the team.

Says a bit about the players, and probably humanity in general ey?



Internet’s for regular words, not your fancy words.


Regardless of which game is actually better… LoL absolutely dominates the market share. Using a specific subset of stats garnered from a specific niche application in order to tell the story you want is just ridiculously dishonest.


as an aside, Has Dota 2 been officially released yet? or is it still in “beta”

Not released as such since you cant log into steam and choose to download it (even though keys are everywhere).
Purist may also avoid DOTA2 for other reasons such as there are a few quite powerful heroes and some important counters still havnt been added yet to the pool. Abbadon is at the top of the list for me and also terrorblade.

I suspect many people jumped onto LoL because early on it was difficult to get a hold of a copy of DOTA2 and they wanted the next best thing. Myself I stuck with DOTA1 right to the end and i still play it sometimes. For a game thats free it is shocking how much money I have spent on it :)



Having “most players” is a stupid metric anyway. Would anyone argue that Porsche is a “worse” company than Mazda because it sells less cars? If all you do is pursue the biggest market share, it means you have to modify your product to appeal to the masses. This means that Porsche would have to reduce its price so more people caa afford it and thus produce a lower quality car… so no.

The community in both games are equally bad. The games are equally fun to play.

One cool thing about DOTA2 though is that their ingame item shops is all purely cosmetic (no need to pay for runes or champions) and a cut of the money goes back to the community (players) who makes the items, and with the random drop system per game you may get a random drop which turns out to be a $300 courier which you can sell for real money on their auction house. Well, it feels more like a “community” of players where you can make, buy and sell items in the game and trade items (yes skins and items are freely tradeable and shareable between friends).


On another note, the player population still isn’t large enough for both games, particularly at higher skill levels. My queue times on my main in solo queue (for LOL and DOTA2) are usually 6 to 10 minutes. It’s tempting to go pull in some low skilled friends to lower the calculated average skill so I get quicker games, or I go to my lower level alt.


Regardless of which game is actually better… LoL absolutely dominates the market share. Using a specific subset of stats garnered from a specific niche application in order to tell the story you want is just ridiculously dishonest.


There’s no way DOTA2 has even remotely the same market share as LoL, not even close, anyone who considers that possible is just dreaming.


If anybody hasn’t played DOTA2 they are missing out bigtime, I found it a difficult game to play until I discovered the hero “Tinker”, you cant go wrong with him.

LOL doesn’t even compare to DOTA2 as the graphics are gorgeous on DOTA2.

( btw, I have 3 keys of DOTA2 if anybody wants to add me to steam, name = revision3)

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