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Thread: Name references and copyrighted content in DotA

  1. #1
    Basic Member denik's Avatar
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    Sep 2011

    Name references and copyrighted content in DotA

    Some of you may be aware of this list which I found HERE (original article). The names of heroes and items below are references to other games, myths etc. Some of them are still used in Dota 2, but others are copyrighted and had to be changed. So if you ever wondered why Eaglehorn is renamed to Eaglesong, the answer is below
    Some of those references are not confirmed as there are only speculations about them.


    • Aegis of the Immortal - A shield carried by Athena, for Zeus the Greek god. Dropped by Roshan.
    • Aghanim's Scepter - Refers to Agahnim, the final boss in some of the Zelda games.
    • Armlet of Mordiggian (In Dota 2 - Armlet) - Mordiggian is a fictional character in the Cthulhu Mythos.
    • Black King Bar - Reference to a weapon in Phantasy Star Online.
    • Buriza do Kyanon (In Dota 2 - Daedalus) - is a unique crossbow from Diablo II.
    • Cranium Basher (In Dota 2 - Skull Basher) - Cranium Basher is a maul from Diablo. It's also in Diablo II.
    • Dagon - A Semitic God.
    • Eaglehorn (In Dota 2 - Eaglesong) - is a bow from Diablo II, originally from Diablo.
    • Eul's Scepter of Divinity - A tribute to the creator of the original Defense of the Ancients, which included an item of the same name.
    • Eye of Skadi - Skadi is the wife of the Van god Njord in Norse mythology. She was the Goddess of winter, and as a tribute to her the item causes a hero's attack to deal frost damage, slowing opponents.
    • Guinsoo's Scythe of Vyse (In Dota 2 - Scythe of Vyse) - A tribute to the Guinsoo an editor of Defense of the Ancients: Allstars.
    • Hand of Midas - Midas is a character in Greek mythology who turned everything he touched into gold. In Allstars, this item kills and turns an enemy creep into gold.
    • Heart of Tarrasque - A nearly immortal creature from Dungeons & Dragons, also mythical creature resembling a dragon, lion and scorpion. Also a small boss from Starcraft, another Blizzard game.
    • Khadgar's Pipe of Insight (In Dota 2 - Pipe of Insight) - Named after the Warcraft III item of the same name.
    • Lothar's Edge (In Dota 2 - Shadow Blade) - A tribute to Sir Anduin Lothar, the Champion of Azeroth, during the First War (in Warcraft and Warcraft II.)
    • Messerschmidt's Reaver (In Dota 2 - Reaver) - Messerschmidt's Reaver is an axe from Diablo II, originally from Diablo.
    • Monkey King Bar - From the Chinese folk tale Journey to the West, the Monkey King Bar was a staff used by the hero Sun Wukong and could alter its size to his will; the same bar used by the character Son Goku in the Dragon Ball series. The weapon also appears in Phantasy Star Online and may also be another reference to that game.
    • Nathrezim Buckler (In Dota 2 - Buckler) - The Nathrezim or Dreadlords are a race in the Warcraft universe of games.
    • Necronomicon - A fictional book invented by the early pulp fiction writer H. P. Lovecraft. Also the strongest book wielded by Cecilia in the RPG Wild Arms. A book bearing this title also appeared in the movie Army of Darkness.
    • Poor Man's Shield - Refers to poor man's copyright.
    • Sange - A sword from the game Phantasy Star Online.
    • Sange and Yasha - In Phantasy Star Online The Sange and Yasha could be combined to form a formidable dual sword weapon, and thus the same is allowed here.
    • Shiva's Guard - Refers to the Hindu deity.
    • Stygian Desolator - A weapon from the game Anarchy Online. The name is derived from the river that flows in the Greek underworld, the River Styx (Stygian, meaning to have the properties of Styx). This is however counterintuitive, because the waters of the River Styx was supposed to confer immortality to those who touched it. Achilles was said to have been dipped in the waters of the Styx as a baby.
    • Talisman of Evasion - An item from the games Warcraft III and World of Warcraft.
    • Yasha - A type of demon in Indian mythology. Also refers to another sword from the game Phantasy Star Online.
    Last edited by denik; 12-19-2011 at 05:28 PM.

  2. #2
    Basic Member denik's Avatar
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    • Abaddon, Lord of Avernus - Avernus is Latin for "void" or "abyss". Abaddon (Hebrew for "destruction") is the name of the fallen angel of the abyss from the Book of Revelation, which is the last book of the Bible. Is also a powerful character in the miniature wargame Warhammer 40,000.
    • Aggron Stonebreaker, Ogre Magi - It's name is the name of a pokemon.
    • Akasha, Queen of Pain - One of the five elements of Hinduism. Also the name of the Queen of the Damned from a book by Anne Rice. Literally speaking in Hindi, it means "sky."
    • Alleria, Windrunner (In Dota 2 - Lyralei) - An elven hero in Warcraft_II:_Beyond_the_Dark_Portal
    • Anub'arak, Nerubian Assassin (In Dota 2 - Nyx Assassin) - The undead Nerubian crypt lord in Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne.
    • Rattlerap, Clockwerk Goblin (In Dota 2 - he is not anymore goblin) - One of the Maximals on Transformers: The Beast Wars. His beast form was that of a rat.
    • Atropos, Bane Elemental - One of the three fates in Greek mythology, who literally "cut the thread of life" according to legend. Also, all of his abilities are named after spells of the elemental type "bane" from Tactics Ogre: The Knight of Lodis and Atropos was the ultimate sword attack from the game.
    • Azgalor, Pit Lord - Pit lord found in Battle of Mount Hyjal.
    • Azwraith, Phantom Lancer - Uses a character model/icon based on a Final Fantasy character, Kimahri.
    • Banehallow, Lycanthrope - Refers to lycanthropy, the ability or power of a human being to undergo transformation into a wolf.
    • Barathrum, Spiritbreaker - The name Barathrum is the word for "underworld" in Latin.
    • Black Arachnia, Broodmother - The name, "Black Arachnia" is a character in the TV series Beast Wars. In the show, Black Arachnia is a female spider/robot for the Predacons faction.
    • Bradwarden, Centaur Warchief - Centaur character from R.A. Salvatore's book The Demon Awakens.
    • Cairne Bloodhoof, Tauren Chieftain - Grand Chief of the united tribes of the tauren, chieftain of the Bloodhoof, and leader of Thunder Bluff.
    • Furion, Prophet (In Dota 2 - Tequoia, the Nature's Prophet) - The leader of the Night Elves, with his command of nature, in Warcraft III.
    • Daelin Proudmoore, Admiral (In Dota 2 - Kunkka) - Admiral of the naval forces of the Alliance during the Second War.
    • Ignis Fatuus - Keeper of the Light's ultimate skill, which is a phenomenal occurrence in marshlands creating a pale light, similar to Will 'o the Wisp.
    • Jakiro, Twin-Headed Dragon - Background story based on Nhggr, a dragon that gnawed at a World Tree.
    • Jin'zakk, Batrider - Named after the Forest troll Warlord of the same name.
    • Kael, Invoker (In Dota 2 - Garral) - Possibly named after Kael'thas Sunstrider.
    • Kel'Thuzad, Lich (In Dota 2 - Ethreain) - The Lich King's disciple in the original Warcraft III.
    • King Leoric, Skeleton King (In Dota 2 - Ostarion) - his name comes from a character in Diablo whose son was possessed by the demon.
    • Krobelus, Death Prophet - A character (missionary role) in the game Summoner 2.
    • Leshrac the Malicious, Tormented Soul - A character from Magic: The Gathering.
    • Leviathan, Tidehunter - Strength hero that looks like a sea giant. His name comes from a Biblical sea creature. His name can also be from a unique armor in Diablo II, "The Leviathan" Kraken Shell. One of his skills is called Kraken Shell.
    • Lina Inverse, Slayer (In Dota 2 - Lina) - Powerful spellcaster, whose name and spells originate from Slayers, a famous manga and anime.
    • Lucifer, Doom Bringer - A Doom Guard, referring to the fallen archangel (the Devil) in Christian tradition. (Also from Heroes Might and Magic Series).
    • Magnus, Magnataur - A reference to German physicist Heinrich Magnus who described a physical phenomenon called the Magnus effect, that is apt because of Magnus' (the Magnataur's) ultimate Reverse Polarity acting like the Magnus effect.
    • Medusa, Gorgon - A monster in Greek mythology whose gaze turned people to stone. This is represented in-game using the skills Purge and Gaze (certain versions only) which greatly slows enemies, however does not turn them into stone.
    • Meepo, Geomancer - A kobold character from Dungeons and Dragons.
    • Mercurial, Spectre - Having the characteristics of eloquence, shrewdness, swiftness, and thievishness attributed to the god Mercury. Also this is the name of the artist of the loading screen for version 6.28 and beyond.
    • Mogul Kahn, Axe - The name Mogul refers to a dynasty of Farsi-Mongolians that once controlled the area that is now Afghanistan, Balochistan, and the Indian subcontinent (e.g. Babur, Akbar), while Kahn is a misspelling of "Khan", which means commander, leader or ruler in Persian.
    • Morphling, Morphling - A shapeshifter from Wizards of the Coast's Magic: The Gathering, which is also adept at switching stats.
    • Mortred, Phantom Assassin - Her name possibly derives from the name Mordred. In the legend of King Arthur, Mordred is a traitor that severely wounds King Arthur. This has a hint of similarity to Mortred's story text in the DotA game, which appears as a tooltip during hero selection. Name could also allude to the word mortify, meaning to destroy the strength, vitality, or functioning of. Mortred also helped to test the map when Euls still made it.
    • Nevermore, Shadow Fiend- Name is based on Edgar Allan Poe's poem "The Raven".
    • Nortrom, Silencer - His name could have been derived from Nordom, a character in Planescape Torment. This could also possibly be derived from the company Norton, as they are a company developing anti-virus software and Nortrom is an anti-magic hero.
    • Puck, Faerie Dragon - Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream featured a faerie named Puck.
    • Pudge, Butcher - Named after The Butcher in the game Diablo. When he uses his ultimate spell, he uses a phrase from The Butcher as well.
    • Raigor Stonehoof, Earthshaker - Earthshaker is an item from Diablo 2, which can proc fissure, one of Raigor's spells.
    • Rexxar, Beastmaster (In Dota 2 - Karroch) - The well known half-ogre that helped in the foundation of Durotar in Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne.
    • Rhasta, Shadow Shaman - The name is derived from a specific religious group, "Rhastafari," in Jamaica which is where Rhasta's and all the trolls accent places them.
    • Rikimaru, Stealth Assassin - A stealth ninja in the game Tenchu: The Stealth Assassins.
    • Shendelzare Silkwood, Vengeful Spirit - Her Magic Missile spell derives from the name of a spell in Dungeons and Dragons.
    • Slithice, Naga Siren - Derived from Greek Mythology, where sirens (half woman half sea creatures) were enticing men on ships to their island. In the game, her ultimate spell (Song of the Siren) causes all enemies in the surrounding area to sleep for a short period of time.
    • Squee, Goblin Techies - Character from Magic: The Gathering; a goblin from the Weatherlight saga.
    • Sven, Rogue Knight - Comes from the Swedish Body Builder infamous for using the line "I want to pump *clap* you up!". Alluded to the captions under his ability Toughness Aura and ultimate ability God's Strength.
    • Syllabear, Lone Druid - Syllabear is named after Syl-la-ble from Clan TDA who worked with Guinsoo in the development of DotA Allstars. Before leaving, he created this hero as to leave his mark in DotA.
    • Tiny, Stone Giant - A sarcastic name by the fact that his last ability is grow to an enormous and powerful mountain Giant.
    • Ulfsaar, Ursa Warrior - A Furbolg warrior whose name may spring from the Norse Ulfsark, a warrior in times of need (alluding to his character description) that wore animal skins as a tactic to scare enemies; and similar to Ulfsarks were Berserkers, meaning "Bear strength."
    • Venomancer - Uses a model of a character in Starcraft, the Zerg Hydralisk. This model is included in the Warcraft III data files as an easter egg.
    • Vol'Jin, Witch Doctor (In Dota 2 - Zharvakko) - A former houngan or famous troll witch doctor of the Darkspear Tribe from Warcraft III and World of Warcraft.
    • Yurnero, Juggernaut - An Orc Blademaster who's ultimate ability, Omnislash, is the derivative of Cloud Strife's omnislash from Final Fantasy. Comes from the Hindi Jagann*th, literally, lord of the world, title of Vishnu, and also defined as a massive inexorable force that crushes all in its path.
    • Zeus, Lord of Olympia - Leader of the gods in Greek mythology. Zeus was the god of lightning, and in DotA Allstars the Zeus hero specializes in lightning-based spells.
    Last edited by denik; 12-20-2011 at 08:00 AM.

  3. #3
    Basic Member GIROG's Avatar
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    Dec 2011
    Nice job with the research.

  4. #4
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    i mean, invoker was pretty obviously named after kael'thas. haha

  5. #5
    Basic Member denik's Avatar
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    You would be amazed if you knew how many DotA players actually have no clue about Warcraft lore.

  6. #6
    Thx for great job Denik. I still don't understand though, why heroes without copyright problems don't have their names in dota 2. Like Nevermore, why they named him after his title shadowfiend and not his name?

  7. #7
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    Oct 2011
    gj man

  8. #8
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    Nov 2011
    Riki is still called Rikimaru btw.

    as you can see from some Lines regarding him on other Heroes.

    still nice job you did there didnt know quite a few of those, even if a few feel a bit far fetched especialy the one regarding Notrom

  9. #9
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    Beastmaster has his named changed from Rexxar to Karroch

  10. #10
    Basic Member denik's Avatar
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    Sep 2011
    Thanks for pointing it out. The last time I read BM's lore I'm pretty sure it was still Rexxar.

    @Shadowflame there is a separate discussion about hero names and titles HERE

    btw about Axe - in his Dota 2 lore the mistaken "Kahn" from the original is fixed and he is "Mogul Khan" now

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