MOBA-style PvP coming to World of Warcraft with Defense of the Alehouse map?

World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria Screenshot - 1132665

Blizzard's long-standing MMORPG World of Warcraft could be borrowing a PvP concept from one of Blizzard's popular mods, Defense of the Ancients. New footage and images of a new PvP feature have been leaked, sparking speculation that World of Warcraft could be getting a MOBA-themed update in the 5.2 patch.

For those unfamiliar, "MOBA" is short for "multiplayer online battle arena." The term stems from the popular Warcraft 3 mod, DotA (Defense of the Ancients). The concept pits two teams against each other in a race to destroy the other team's guard towers and reach their base. The teams are accompanied by waves of NPC-controlled units and typically engage in several skirmishes throughout the match. The mod has sparked a whole new genre of MOBA-style games led by League of Legends -- which recently became the most played video game in the world

So, what leads us to believe that World of Warcraft will borrow this MOBA-style of gameplay and incorporate it in its PvP? Leaked footage of a top-down battlefield known as "Defense of the Alehouse" was first unearthed by WoWSerbia. WoW Insider then reported that the map is part of Blizzard's 5.2 update and posted an image of the map overview, suggesting it could support up to ten players at once -- two teams, five vs five? It's perfect for PvP.

Looking at the map, it appears to be the traditional setup for a MOBA game. There seems to be three main lanes (pathways in which the towers and NPCs are located) and a jungle area connected them. Traditionally, MOBA's are top-down view, but if this is being implemented in World of Warcraft, it'll most likely resemble Smite -- a third-person game developed and published by Hi-Rez Studios.

Everything about the map screams MOBA, but we'll have to wait and see. If it turns out to be true, I think this would be a great addition to the PvP portion of the game. Not only does it provide an entirely new PvP mode, but it totally opens the game up to more strategy. Check out the video below and let us know your thoughts.

Matt Liebl You can follow Senior News Editor Matt Liebl on Twitter @Matt_GZ. He likes games, sports, musicals, and his adorable dog, Wrigley, and his wife.
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Games: World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria


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