Heroes of Newerth devs turn the MOBA single player with Strife’s episodic campaign

Boy wonder Bastion is a cornerstone of Strife lore, and the subject of its first episode.

S2 Games’ Strife is an attempt to rebuild the MOBA according to lessons learned running Heroes of Newerth. It’s distinguished from its peers by rampaging apes, player-controlled pets, and four years of genre experience. Plus, now it’s in open beta, a modest single-player campaign.

Prophecy of Darkstone: Child of the Dawn is the first in a series of episodes that will spotlight individual heroes from Strife’s roster.

“This single player campaign is something people have been waiting for,” said S2’s special projects director, Brad Bower. “Bringing the lore and the story of the heroes from Strife to life through mini adventure gameplay is treading new water. We’re going to gauge community reaction from the open beta as we move forward with future games.”

The campaign was inspired partly by fan emails during Strife’s closed beta, which called for opportunities to play through some of the backstory of the game. Strife lore has it that the MOBA’s heroes are training in arenas for an imminent invasion.

“There are a lot of complex politics and relationships that exist between these heroes,” Bower told Shacknews. “Right now only the S2 team knows this internally. A lot of the interesting aspects of storylines are lost by simply reading lore.

“We want people to fully experience it through the eyes of the characters. We believe the best way to tell a story is to let them play it, rather than have a comic book or a story on a website.”

Child of the Dawn tells the story of Bastion – the ‘child of prophecy’ who begins as a servant in a king’s castle, but winds up waking up Strife’s world to the threat it faces. S2 plan to release a new episode every few months.

Would you prefer to consume LoL lore in single player stories? I know our Tim would love a Dota 2 single player campaign to ease its learning curve.