Even Without The Option, Heroes Of The Storm Players Still Surrender 

Even Without The Option, Heroes Of The Storm Players Still Surrender

"Just let them win, it's over" one of my teammates typed. "Not yet," I responded. He didn't listen.

Blizzard formally announced that its new MOBA Heroes of the Storm wouldn't come with a surrender option back in April. While I originally disagreed with their reasoning, I now realise it was fairly sound. "We believe the game is never officially over until the core is destroyed," the developer said in a blog post explaining the decision. "Adding a Surrender option could tempt players to bail out at the slightest setback, removing focus from the game and potentially introduce even more toxic behaviour."

Heroes matches also unfold at a much faster clip than League of Legends, one of the game's two main rivals and the only one that allows players to start a surrender vote after 20 minutes in a given match. Most Heroes games are finished in that amount of time. It's hard to imagine a surrender vote that comes before the 20-minute mark yielding many positive results. The far more likely outcome, as Blizzard suggested, would be teams or individual players feeling frustrated after falling behind in the first five or ten minutes of a match (which happens in many Heroes of the Storm games, in my experience), saying "fuck it," and throwing the game. Five or ten minutes simply isn't enough time for a match to truly take shape and play itself out, and anything past that point edges so close to endgame territory that it just doesn't seem worth it. Better to encourage a "never give up, never surrender!" mentality in the player-base than save them a few minutes of game time.

I've also realised something else about Heroes of the Storm over the past two and a half months, though. And that is: players are going to surrender whether they technically have an option to or not.

As I gained experience and eventually started climbing up the ranks of the game's competitive "Hero League" mode, I encountered more and more of these behaviours. First there were lone grumps or pessimistic teammates — people who'd gripe about a team composition making it impossible to win a game. Or in the worst-case scenarios, players who'd get fed up and abandon the match entirely. But over the past few weeks I've seen a more concrete type of surrender take shape: players deciding either collectively or individually to simply lie down and let the enemy team bulldoze over them. I mean this quite literally. Part of a team will sometimes decide to call it quits by camping out at their hearthstone — the respawn point in HOTS and the one part of your base the enemy can't get to — while the other team finishes demolishing our defences.

I managed to capture a team I was playing on doing this in a game I played over the past weekend. The clip is short because I only started recording once I'd a) died and b) realised what two of my teammates were doing. But it should help give you an idea of what these sorts of ad hoc surrenders look like:

"Just let them win," my teammate had typed. "It's over." He was almost certainly right. But here's my third revelation: I don't actually think that winning or losing a match is what makes a fiercely competitive game like Heroes of the Storm fun. The reality of defeat in Heroes of the Storm is far less depressing than the mindset of defeat.

Some of my favourite HOTS matches have actually been ones that I've lost. Even if I ultimately end up seeing "DEFEAT" plastered across my computer screen, it's satisfying to leave a game knowing that my teammates and I refused to give up a millimetre of the map unless our opponents pried it from our stubborn, vice-like grip. Because while we might not have won, I know in those moments that I've earned the respect of my opponents (and hopefully my teammates too). That's its own sort of reward in a community-driven online multiplayer game like this.


Comments

    It's no different to DOTA, many games you can come back, and some times it's a lot of fun, but some times it really isn't worth the struggle, especially when that struggle drives the game out long enough that you could of had a whole other game in that time

      Exactly.... It becomes pretty depressing and obvious that the team you are on aren't bothering at all about skulls/gems/seeds/whatever. By the time the bonus is over they've cashed in enough for another round of tower smashing...

    Yep, that mentality frustrates me to no end... Yeah if they're 3 levels ahead and they're attacking your core that most likely means it's over... But at least go out swinging.

    Last edited 19/06/15 11:50 am

      I'm happy to vote for a surrender if I believe the game is out of reach. What really annoys me is people who afk when the vote doesn't go through.

        I'm happy to vote for a surrender if I believe the game is out of reach
        While that sounds like it may work, it would ultimately be exploited... Didn't get all 10 coins to Blackheart first and people will GG and initiate a vote to surrender.

        The stupid thing about a surrender mechanism in HOTS is the games are so short it doesn't matter... You don't exactly not gain XP or gold for losing, you just don't gain as much. The only way I would accept a surrender mechanism if the penalty for ending the game is no XP and no gold.

      Even if I can't do anything to change the outcome of a game (of any type) I'll do my best to take a couple of the bastards with me, or at least annoy the crap out of them before I die.

      Exactly. Losers that can't enjoy the fun of the gameplay are what spoil gaming for everyone. Pathetic.

        It depends, the fun of the gameplay is only there is you don't die within seconds of initiating an attack aha. I agree that giving up too early is idiotic but if they're 4 levels ahead and are about 3-4 minutes off winning I don't see an issue with surrendering to skip the time wasted while the team re-spawns

        Having the surrender option unavailable until 20 minute mark might make it better

        Last edited 19/06/15 3:04 pm

    Agreed. If I'm losing a match in Dota, no matter how bad were losing, or how certain our loss is, I never stop trying. Either we're going to come back, or they're going to fight through tooth and nail for every fucking inch they take

    I say include a surrender option, but use it as part of the match-making. Make it so that players who give up early or under certain conditions don't get matched with people who refuse to quit. People like me who hate this 'they scored the first point, match over' attitude and stick it out to the bitter end get lumped together.
    This way instead of triyng to force people to play my way you simply use the massive playerbase and ultra deep stat processing to ensure people with playstyle clashes don't get matched with unsuitable players.

    Last edited 19/06/15 12:01 pm

    Some people can see the writing on the wall as far as a loss goes in any of the MOBAs and I don't begrudge them for wanting to end the game so they can move on. That being said I have had many wins where we looked 0% chance of winning, they pick a bad time to baron\rosh or make a bad play and end up losing.

    It goes both ways.

    You're never defeated until you decide you are.
    Even if you lose a match, if you have the resilience to come back and try again, you're not defeated.

    A quotable quote a read from somewhere once went something like, "Failure is an option. Defeat is not."

      Just remembered it was from Bruce Lee:

      “Defeat is a state of mind; no one is ever defeated until defeat has been accepted as a reality.”

      Even if you fail, you may not be defeated, is how i see it.

    Given that HotS rewards you based on the matches played as opposed to the time spent in a match I see little to no point in forcing out a struggle. Don't get me wrong I've had a number of comeback matches where a last minute push turned a 3 level lead in to a 2minute game-over enemy base rush. But 9/10 the enemy are in the lead in HotS because they just play better as a team than your own team do, might as well end the misery and restart. Outside of hero league I usually just run straight into the enemy base or towers and suicide myself to surrender as HotS will kick you out of the match if you dont take/deal damage after a few minutes.

      So you are those kind of people that dive to enemy base to suicide when you think the team is losing. I hate those guys.

        I aim to please; here's hoping we get a chance to have a match together! =]

        Edit: Look to be fair if I have 90 minutes on a weekday to game and I want to meet my daily quests for HotS I'm not about to waste 45 minutes in a match where the support class has spent the whole match killing mercs and 0 heals. HotS quick matches have a way of being decided in the first 5-10minutes because that's when you find out if your team can play as a team or not. If I find out they can't I'm not going to waste what little gaming time I have in a work day making people who want to keep fighting no matter feel better.

        So yeah it's all well and good to say keep fighting till the very end but some people have lives; and very little time in their lives for games. If my suicide runs end a match faster and causes a few people some aggro but allows me to play one more match with the time I have I'm not going to lose any sleep over it.

        Double edit: Blizzard could easily remedy this by equalling the rewards at the end of a match to the amount of time spent in it. Last I played which was just before open beta you get much more gold and exp for completing 3 quick losses in an hour as opposed to losing 1 match over 45 minutes.

        Last edited 19/06/15 1:07 pm

    I think there should be a surrender option when one or several players leave. It was annoying to play a 1v8 game of Halo and be punished for leaving.

      This! I'm firmly on the side of fight hard until the bitter end no matter how desperate it looks, I've already had some amazing games where all looked lost and hopeless, but the whole team dug in, won that team fight, wiped them all and it became a game changer, is there any better feeling than an epic comeback?? you don't get these feelings if you give up.

      However I wholeheartedly agree that once 2 or more people quit the game we should be allowed to surrender, even a never give up attitude aint going to net you a win in a 3v5 (at least very seldom).

    i don't disagree with Blizzard's position and as a LOL player i do see people on occasion who are willing to surrender at the slightest setback. however when we are talking about competitive play (ranked) i believe there should be the option to concede the game.

    time is your greatest constraint in ranked anything, the number of games you can get in during week/month/season can be the biggest factor in how high you climb. in a game that averages 20-40 minutes playing out a losing game for another 5-10 minutes is taking time away from the next game, and it all adds up. also there is a problem that exists even to pro play that some teams just don't know how to end a game.

    i think Riot's policy is better, you can concede a game but you have to actually try first. if you get 20 minutes in and you still feel like its over, THEN its ok to concede.

    Even if the screen says "Defeat" if you practiced and learned then you still have won something. Even recognizing what your mistake(s) were is learning.

    The best match I had was against AI :P BUT!!! It was the map where you get the Egyptian temple, or something and the obelisk shoots lazer-beams at the enemies structure. Anyway, it came down to the the wire, I had just resurrected and made my way straight to the temple, then I saw their whole team was headed for my core. My core was already in bad shape and I thought to myself, oh well they got me...then with 1% left on my core the temple killed theirs!! It was awesome. I totally suck at the game, but that was fun :P

    Needless to say, I retired form the Moba world undefeated :P

    Last edited 19/06/15 8:10 pm

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