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Dota 2’s big update goes live tomorrow. Here’s what’s in it.

New hero, skills tree, and plenty more change the game

Valve Corp.
Owen S. Good is a longtime veteran of video games writing, well known for his coverage of sports and racing games.

Monkey King, a brand new Dota 2 character teased back in August, headlines a comprehensive update arriving tomorrow for Valve's free-to-play MOBA. Changes to Dota 2's game interface, gameplay, and a talent tree for heroes, also are forthcoming.

The talent tree is probably the broadest-reaching gameplay update in Dota 2 version 7.00. With it, players can select talents for their heroes at levels 10, 15, 20 and 25 to equip them with new augmentations to their powers and abilities. As it is a skill tree, each skill taken opens a new branch, and once taken, other branches are no longer available to the hero.

This example, for Wraith King, explains what Dota 2 is getting at. Much more is available at the Dota 2 site.

Monkey King, the new hero, is a melee character who plays in the carry position. His ultimate ability, Wukong's Command, summons monkey soldiers to aid him in the battle. He also has an innate power called Mischief, which allows him to change his form (depending on the environment) to deceive enemies. More on Monkey King is available here.

There is a ton of other stuff coming in the update, which deploys tomorrow, but I won't pretend to speak to all of it. The news is pretty simple, though, Dota 2 is getting plenty of changes that stop short of a total makeover. Experts will no doubt pick over the balance adjustments that are included in this patch as the landmark esports title presses ahead.

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