Pretty much every MOBA out there features several game modes, each with its specific rules and restrictions. If you’re a Dota 2 or League of Legends player, you’re likely already familiar with some of the Draft Modes. These modes allow teams to take turns picking their heroes (or champions) before the actual game begins. In some of these modes players have the option of banning certain heroes so that the opposing team is unable to use them for the duration of the game. The latest popular MOBA to hit the eSports scene, Heroes of the Storm, also features a Draft Mode, but without the option of banning heroes that you think are unbalanced, or simply don’t like.
Blizzard explains that there’s a very good reason for this as the company feels that it holds them “to a higher level” when balancing all the heroes in Heroes of the Storm. So, instead of relying on the players to ban the heroes that are way too strong, the company does its best to balance them all, thus eliminating the need for a ban phase. “If we don’t need a ban phase that would be a win for us,” Heroes of the Storm Game Designer Matt Cooper told PCGamesN. “It holds us to a higher level, to make sure the balance of the game is really strong. We can’t say ‘Oh, the players will just ban that character’ and not figure out how to balance them.”
The company also says that players are able to jump into a game faster if there is no ban phase. This decision is certainly fitting for a fast-paced game like Heroes of the Storm, but it wouldn’t work too well in professional Dota 2 matches for example. In Valve’s MOBA some games can be decided before they even begin if a team is smart with their picks and their bans. While Heroes of the Storm works pretty well as it is right now, the game is still in the Alpha testing phase, which means that it’s likely to undergo some more changes before the final version is out. Regarding a Draft Mode that features a ban phase, Blizzard says that this is “something we can do if we need to.”