This past week, gamers saw the closure of Electronic Arts’ Dawngate open beta with the result of the project canceled. There was no specific reason as to why the project was shut down, only that EA was “not seeing the progress we’d hoped for.” Dawngate was a game that had a few degrees of difference from other games in the genre of Multiplayer Online Battle Arena (MOBA).
Those familiar with the genre of MOBAs are used to the three-lane maps and a small number of objectives that are fought over such as Dragon in League of Legends or Roshan in DOTA2. Dawngate had a two-lane map and a few more objectives to fight over and one of these objectives is almost entirely unique: Parasite, a creature in the middle of the map, evolves over time, becoming harder to kill but giving a better reward.
While most MOBAs relied on a mana resource, Dawngate had very few heroes that had mana or any other type of resource. There are other games out there that are in the same genre and have a small following, but by and large the games are similar. If a AAA company like EA found slow growth among the Dawngate audience, then many developers might be hard-pressed to find support for their new MOBA title.