Dota Underlords, the trademark filed by Valve a few weeks back, is indeed their standalone Auto Chess title and starting today, June 13, it became available for all those who own The International 2019 Battle Pass.
Dota Underlords is in a closed beta stage for now, but it will enter the open beta “in approximately one week,” per Valve’s say in a blog post. The open beta will be free to play and the game will be available on Steam (Windows, Mac, and Linux), Android, and iOS.
Being a standalone title, Dota Underlords keeps a lot of the core mechanics of Dota Auto Chess, but the interface has improved a lot, it features several new heroes, and a plethora of new items. The Synergy mechanic is a bit changed, somewhat simplified, the heroes being grouped by “Alliances.” Each hero has two Alliances, meaning two types of synergies. Among the new heroes you find Pudge for example, which is a Heartless – Warrior. The heartless Alliance is what Dota Auto Chess players know as the Undead synergy.
While new heroes have been added, some of the chess pieces from Drodo’s arcade mode haven’t made their way to Dota Underlords just yet. For instance, Dazzle and Winter Wyvern are not featured in the game for now.
With Dota Underlords being released as a perk for the TI9 Battle Pass owners only, the prize pool for Valve’s most prestigious Dota 2 tournament might get another surge and it will be interesting to see how it all pans out through the next week, when the game is expected to enter the open beta stage.
In their official announcement on the blog.dota2.com Valve encourages all the players to send their feedback.
From Valve’s release:
“We’re sharing Dota Underlords fairly early in development. And while we intend to constantly be updating the game and adding features throughout the Beta Season, your feedback is critical to help the team know what issues are important to you. On the main screen we’ve added a ‘Submit Feedback’ button to the game. Feel free to wear it out. Tell us what you love, and tell us what could be better. We welcome it all.
See you in the game,
The Underlords Team”