Earlier this year, the Valve Corporation filed a trademark on the name DOTA, coinciding with their development of DOTA 2, a brand new game for the source engine billed as a follow-up to the wildly popular Warcraft III custom game, Defense of the Ancients, and developed in collaboration with IceFrog, one of the men responsible for the original.
All this was evidently news to Blizzard, who announced a new in-house Starcraft II mod, Blizzard DOTA, at Blizzcon this past weekend. Blizzard Executive Vice President of Game Design, Rob Pardo, spoke to Eurogamer on the matter, saying that the Valve trademark attempt “doesn’t seem the right thing to do”.
Pardo cited Valve’s history of encouraging and working with the modding community, “It’s such a community company that it just seems like a really strange move to us,” he said.
“I really don’t understand why [they would do it], to be honest.”
At this point, it is Blizzard’s contention that DOTA, as a term, should be freely available for anyone to use. And given the number of variations and original takes we’ve seen on the concept in recent years, he may have a point.
So what do you think? Does Valve have a right to trademark DOTA, or is it like trying to trademark the term “RTS” at this point?