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Tablet-based MOBA VainGlory: An Introduction

Artem Uarabei

SuperEvilMegaCorp showed up at PAX South 2015 with their tablet-based MOBA, VainGlory, in a big way.

For the uninitiated, VainGlory is a MOBA style game that is made specifically for the mobile market. However, while it supports iPhones I have found that the best experience happens on iPad mini or larger. This size leaves enough room to use double index fingers while still seeing the screen. The double index-finger control style also means that one is likely to want a hard surface or table to rest the device on before diving into the 3v3 action.

Once one has the correct setup for the game, and a little bit of MOBA knowlege under their belt, It's exciting to say that SuperEvilMegaCorp has actually pulled off the impossible. The combat is fluid, the commands are responsive, using abilities doesn't seem like a chore, and the game is simplified enough so that anybody with some MOBA experience can just jump right in.

The map layout is a little different than the multi-lane setup seen from most MOBAs of today. VainGlory sports only one main lane for carries to play around in, and one very large and robust jungle that is currently meant for tandem jungling. At first, this scared me. I felt like the game was simplifying the genre just for the purposes of the platform. While this may or may not be true, what I have found is that the new format opens up a plethora of possibilities for counterplay, gank, and mind-gamey scenarios.

While the map is uniquely designed for the mobile experience, the roles adhere to those of a traditional MOBA. There are support characters, carries, bruisers, etc. Those familiar with each of these roles will settle into the game quickly, as the players will feel at home with the playstyles of each role.

The game is accessible exactly to the point that it needs to be; and to those who own an iPad 2 or newer, and iPhone 5 and up, this just may fill that itch for a mobile game that actually keeps you coming back. 

Anybody who owns one of the devices mentioned, and has any interest in the MOBA genre at all, should definitely give this a look. It's available on the appstore now! Also, don't forget to check out the newly announced hero, Ardan!