While all games are different and some factors may not apply to all games within the MOBA genre, are there any external* factors or systems common to most MOBA games that can give you an in-game advantage?

Systems such as those that allow you to "buy power", or have a more experienced player coach you while you play.

**External meaning systems that are not apart of the gameplay itself.*

  • 2
    I've seen 3 downvotes already, anyone care to elaborate on that?
    – Joetjah
    Mar 4, 2013 at 11:13
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    Next time, leave a comment instead of just downvoting. I find the question pretty good for this site. It's a nice addition to the collection of already existing questions. Even though I agree the title should be changed, why not change it instead of just downvoting?
    – Joetjah
    Mar 4, 2013 at 11:30
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    @Joetjah He asking for game recommendation tho?
    – Lyrion
    Mar 4, 2013 at 11:59
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    @Joetjah that makes absolutely no sense. Asking for an example is the same as asking for a recommendation. This is really 4 separate questions, one of which is game-req, which is why it's getting down and close votes.
    – kotekzot
    Mar 4, 2013 at 12:24
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    Well, if your main question is "Which MOBA games allow external help during a game?", then this is correctly closed. That's a game recommendation, and we don't allow those on Arqade; we've had some really bad problems with them.
    – Frank
    Mar 4, 2013 at 13:16

2 Answers 2


Your question covers a wide range by saying you'd like an answer for 'Dota-like games'. I can't say for all of the games whenever or not real money will help you.

I can speak for League of Legends though, and I do believe it's the same in Heroes of Newerth and DOTA 2.

When you play matches in LoL, you gain IP. This is based on the outcome of the match (win/loss), the type of the match (3v3, Dominion, 5v5) and the duration. You can also gain a bonus amount of IP for the first win of the day.

You have the possibility to buy RP in LoL. So in short, you have two currencies: IP and RP.

  • IP can be used to buy Champions, Runes and Rune Pages. Additionaly, Runes can ONLY be bought using IP. You will not be stronger or weaker when you have more or less champions. You'll only have more choice in the champion select screen. Note that there isn't a single champion which can't be bought with IP. You can have an equal amount of champions as someone who uses RP to buy Champions. Runes however do give you advantages in-game. Once you've bought a Rune, you can always use or switch it. It won't be broken or disappear after a while.

  • RP can be used to buy Champions, Skins and Rune Pages. Additionaly, Skins can ONLY be bought using RP. Skins only have a visual effect. Your champion will not get stronger or weaker by using a skin.

So in short, League of Legends doesn't use a Pay-to-win model. Everything in-game that can be bought (or gifted by a friend) with real money (RP), is purely for the looks or unlocking. Unlocking solely give you a wider choice with selecting champions, but is by no means making you stronger. Next to that, IP can be used to unlock champions as well.

On the flip-side, the only thing that can make you stronger before starting by purchasing anything are Runes. These runes can only be bought with IP, and therefore not with real money.

Above things described is stuff what happens outside the matches. In the matches, you have an entire new currency system. On start of the match, your Runes, Skin and Masteries are loaded. No advantage is gain but from the Runes! From the start of the match, you start earning Gold. Nothing else can influence that income besides events in the match itself, like Champion kills or lasthits on Creeps.

When the game is over, calculations are done based on the statistics. You gain IP based on the outcome of the game, the type of match and the duration. The gold you earned in the match is solely for that specific match. You won't be able to do anything with it outside the match, nor within your next match. The only thing you can use from that match is the gained IP (and LP for your ranking, but that's a whole different story).

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    Maybe you should note that there is not a single Champion you can't buy for IP so nobody got an advantage with real money. The thing is that you dont have to farm IP so the only advatage might be the time you need to get what you want.
    – Nitro.de
    Mar 4, 2013 at 11:25
  • But, using that time you got more game-experience, what gives you a better advantage than only a champion collection...
    – Michel
    Mar 4, 2013 at 13:20
  • Despite that, time can't be bought with money so that isn't relevant to the question here! Hahaha
    – Joetjah
    Mar 4, 2013 at 13:29
  • Can you explain how it's not pay to win to have far more options by spending money than a player who does not pay money? Even if each Champion cost 1000000 IP, your argument still applies, and so while it may technically be true it's not even close to realistic. People can (and do) gain an advantage by spending money on things like IP-boosts and additional Rune Pages.
    – Decency
    Mar 8, 2013 at 17:26
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    @Joetjah "Pay-to-win" generally doesn't mean you're paying for guaranteed wins, it means paying money gives you an advantage over people who don't.
    – Decency
    Mar 15, 2013 at 22:04

There is any external help for DotA, Dota2.

For LoL you can buy xp/ip boosts which will help you farm faster and get all needed runes and levels for complete use of your champion. Also you can buy champions faster with money. Everything is accessible for players, who don't pay money, but they must grind a lot longer for full enjoyement of game.

In HoN you can buy EA (early access) heroes, where F2P players needs to wait some time till they can use them too.

Bloodline Champions(?) and Smite let's you buy champions for money, where just for playing you need to grind very long to be able use more champions, than they let you for free. And need to say, their free champions pool is very small, especially in Smite, where you get ONLY 5 free champions.

Also in Bloodline Champions you can buy some extra usable items for extra mini skills.

Don't really know much about current Bloodline Champions and Smite state since I played those very long ago.

So in the end, most Dota-likes gives you opportunity to buy their playable characters for money (except DotA, Dota2 and HoN(except EA)), but you can get them for free investing a lot of time into game.

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