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Modification to Ability Draft

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  • Modification to Ability Draft

    A change needs to be made to AD so that games are more balanced and the outcome is based on skill more so than luck.

    The biggest problem with the mode is the randomness factor of being assigned a hero and a position in the drafting phase. The position itself is just the RNG and that's just part of the mode, but the hero shouldn't also be arbitrarily assigned. So often games are imbalanced with teams of Pugna, Axe, TB, CK and Silencer versus a lineup of Alch, Weaver, Riki, Visage and Timbersaw. The game's over before the the picks and it's a waste of time for both teams.

    A simple fix for this would be to have the hero selection from the available pool as the first phase of the draft. The person in the first position gets the first choice of hero but last pick of their skill - essentially as it is now, just starting with hero selection. This change would make the games more balanced and consistently more fun. It also adds a level of skill by giving teams the ability to coordinate their lineups based on heroes and skill trees. And like the two extra ultimate skills available in AD, the change should include two extra heroes so the person with the last pick can make the decision to choose between Riki, Slark, or Weaver (or whatever trash is left).

    tl;dr - Make AD better by adding a hero selection as the first phase of the draft.

  • #2
    I do agree on the problem you are stating. Though i do not agree on your solution.

    I think your idea is not optimal. First of all, it is a good solution to the firstpick problem. The Dire team could get the first hero pick for example.
    Problem with it is though, that the picking phase is already very long. And I think that last picks are just going to get the shitty heroes.

    Another solution that I thought about is this:
    Make the random hero selection symmetric. Meaning that both teams get same attributes and attacktype.
    If one team gets 5 strength heroes, the other team should as well.
    And if one team has a melee agility hero, the other team should have a melee agility hero as well.
    Sure, some heroes of the same attribute and attack type are stronger than others, but there will always be some kind of unbalance.
    This would, in my opinion, at least get us closer to not losing because you got worse heroes. (Or at least make it rarer to happen)

    Also, please disable Silencer int steal, shits broken.


    • #3
      The small things first: at no point in Ability Draft is the picking phase time ever an issue. I almost exclusively play this mode and know the regulars who play are never complaining about the draft time. It's part of what makes the mode. If people want to play a fast game they can go play All Pick Turbo Mode or Fortnite. I do concede that the time AFTER all the talents are drafted takes a bit long. That part of the phase should be changed to allow players to buy items before the actual game starts - like regular DotA after the hero picks are completed.

      The other small point being your problem with Silencer and I'm assuming other heroes with passives like Treant and Void. I agree with you that they can be annoying to deal with, but I don't ever see them being game breaking. They are definitely strong but so is permanent invisibility.

      In regards to your solution: it's a common point plenty of people seem to make in regards to the hero problem in Ability Draft which is for the developers to essentially create an algorithm that ranks the hero models and randomly assigns them in game so that the teams are balanced. I really dislike this idea for a couple of reasons.
      1. The WHOLE point of AD is to draft skills for a concept hero and have that hero work in the team you're drafting with. Depending on the skill of the players on the team this works out better in certain games than others. Either way, the random assigning of heroes is just bad to begin with. Nobody plays All Random so why have that function in AD?
      2. It doesn't make sense for the developers to take on more work creating and maintaining a ratings system to assign to the heroes. And it's not a simple thing to do, because the hero itself may be strong but based on certain skills in the pool the hero may be way less effective. A Sniper who gets the two Sniper passives is a monster, while a Sniper that gets no Sniper passives may be better off creating the hero to be a caster to take advantage of the cooldown reduction and shrapnel bonus in his talent tree. The Slardar model is a beast of a tank if he isn't building around the bash bonus in his skill tree. The rating changes on how the individual plays. I don't want an algorithm to decide on the hero matchups and, while this would still be better than what's in place now, it isn't the correct answer or the best solution.

      The beauty of the mode is the creation of a concept hero. The problem with the mode is you don't get to choose the hero model. The easiest and most effective way to remedy this is to add an initial phase of the draft where players choose their hero from an available pool. There will be obvious first pick choices like Silencer or Willow or Axe or Omni or Mirana, but there will be strategy picks based on talents in the pool, talent tree bonuses and factoring on what you think will be available by the time it's your turn to pick. It adds more skill elements and removes the randomness factor. It allows teams to form concept builds (similar to having Luna, Vengeful Spirit, Beastmaster and Drow on the same team). It allows teams to vary the amount of melee and ranged heroes on a team. It doesn't require devs to get involved making evenly-ranked randomly assigned teams. It's the best solution to remedy the biggest problem with Ability Draft.


      • #4
        I agree with the original proposed solution.

        I would add to it a system whereby heroes with talent trees that have only ability based selections get priority for that skill.


        • #5
          Does anyone else think Silencer is too strong for Ability Draft? I almost every time see how silencers win games being way too strong from start to the end of the game if they have their 2nd.