10 Best MOBA PC Games, Ranked by Metacritic
Multiplayer Online Battle Arena (MOBA) continues to be one of the most popular video game genres with its addictive mix of strategy and intense PvP combat. Since the genre’s origins, the PC has been the primary medium through which gamers have satisfied the urge to test their skills in a genre known for its difficulty as well as engaging playstyle.
Popular review aggregator Metacritic makes it easy to identify which games were MOBA players’ favorites and which failed to make the same impact.
ten Total War Arena – 75
Blending aspects of the real-time strategy games that defined the total war series with MOBA-style gameplay, Total War Arena was a surprisingly well-done attempt at the Creative Assembly genre. Unlike MOBA conventions, the game centered on 10v10 battles, with each player controlling 3 units.
Unfortunately, the free-to-play game ceased live operations just a year after launching its open beta. Since then, the game has been resurrected by a China-based game company with new content added but, as PCGamesN reports, there’s still no firm word on whether the game will be relaunched for the rest of the world.
9 Master X Master – 76
Released in 2017, Master X Master was a unique take on the MOBA genre that gained a cult fan base due to its quirky way of doing things, though that unfortunately wasn’t enough to keep the game alive. While the game might look pretty conventional, it did a lot of things differently, including having a giant hub world to explore and talk to with other characters rather than just waiting in queues.
Stakes, Master X Master featured a team-by-team system, where each player selected two characters they could switch between when needed. Games were also limited to 25 minutes, giving it a faster pace than other MOBAs. It’s no surprise that the game has been fondly remembered by gamers who enjoyed it during its short lifespan.
8 Awesomenauts – 78
Although 2012’s 2D MOBA slipped off many people’s radar, Awesomenauts‘ sets it apart in a genre dominated by top-down 3D games. Pitting teams of 3 players against each other, the gameplay also includes platforming elements and the 2D environment makes close combat inevitable.
Despite this, the game doesn’t lose the strategic aspect that is also important for MOBAs, with tactical depth remaining one of its selling points. The game is free to play and has a consistently very positive rating on Steam as well as a 78 review score on Metacritic, meaning it’s definitely worth checking out.
seven League of Legends – 78
Remaining one of the greatest games in the world, League of Legends benefits from its massive player base and is always constantly updated with new champions and events. Riot Games’ MOBA is now over twelve years old and, despite having a lower critical rating on Metacritic than other top MOBAs, has a dedicated fan base.
While the game is a conventional MOBA in many ways without straying too far from the formula that made it so successful, League of Legends beats almost any other in terms of choice, with over 150 playable champions, each with their own unique kits and lore. Redditors didn’t even have trouble finding 10 League of Legends champions who could have their own show after the success of Esoteric.
6 Fractured Space – 79
Like other original releases in the free-to-play MOBA genre, Fractured Space sadly only had a short lifespan, but was another memorable PC title in a genre that often relies on close combat between warriors. In contrast, fractured space put the player in charge of giant spaceships, with space as the battlefield.
Even though it went out of business in 2018, the game managed to earn a solid 78 review rating on Metacritic along with generally favorable user reviews showing that many people liked the unique aspects of the unusual MOBAttlestar fusion.
5 Punishment – 83
Pitting deities from real-world mythologies against each other in the MOBA battle arena, Hi-Rez Studios’ Punishment doesn’t stray too far from the conventions of the genre but is nonetheless a very solid entry, earning a Metacritic review score of 83. The game matches the mainstream titles of the genre with 118 playable gods and, although MOBA players have the used to always using the same character, having so many choices is great.
The game also has a vibrant esports scene and remains one of the best MOBAs to play on PC. New content is always added to the game in consistent updates, giving the game a new feel despite its nearly 8-year lifespan.
4 Vanity – 84
Developed by the ominously named Super Evil Megacorp, Vanity was originally a mobile-only MOBA in which players battled for control of the path between each team’s base in order to achieve victory. Vanity received a PC release in July 2018 but the game remains cross-platform, allowing players to play together on the platforms of their choice.
Although the score of 84 it receives from Metacritic is based on the mobile version of the game, the PC version is faithful to the original gaming experience. The game also receives a strong 8.8 out of 10 rating from users, as it is praised for its promise of not compromising the authentic MOBA experience despite its cross-platform nature.
3 Battlerite – 85
The spiritual successor to a free-to-play action game called Lineage: Champions from Swedish game developer Stunlock Studios, Battlerite delivered on the promise of this game with more of a full MOBA style of play. In doing so, they were able to create one of the most fun titles of the genre, focused on action and fast-paced combat.
This intensity was a big part of why Battlerite boasts one of the highest review scores of any MOBA at 85, and also why the game continues to attract players to this day. Unfortunately, since its release in 2017, the player base has dwindled compared to its competitors, but it’s still a fun experience and a true test of skill for players.
2 Heroes of the Storm – 86
Assembly of characters from the Starcraft, Warcraft, Monitoringand Diablo franchises in a free online fighting game, Heroes of the Storm is a MOBA that emphasizes variety, with many different battlefields in which players can test their skills against each other.
Battlegrounds also feature different quests and objectives, and while too much choice is one of the clichés in almost every MOBA game, Heroes of the Storm makes good use of it. Another aspect Heroes of the Storm focuses on is combat, with shorter 5v5 matches that put combat, rather than heavy strategy, front and center. The game’s review score of 86 on Metacritic shows just how well this formula worked.
1 Dota 2 – 90
A title that’s synonymous with the MOBA genre, it’s no surprise that Dota 2 scores extremely high on Metacritic with an overall rating of 90. Developed by Valve as a successor to the Defense of the Ancients mod that established the MOBA as a genre, Dota 2 remains what most other MOBAs aspire to be.
With a huge roster of heroes available to play, the 2013 title has continued to evolve since its initial release, developing a high level of skill among its player base and especially in its popular esports scene.
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