Vainglory is a relatively new MOBA that is celebrating two years of its release. The main feature of Vainglory that makes it so different from major league MOBA’s is that Vainglory is designed specifically to be played on handheld devices.
The main objective of Vainglory is to destroy the enemy team’s turrets and finally their Vain crystal. There are a total of 5 turrets you have to destroy before you can reach the Vain crystal.
Along the way, turrets and minions will attack you in the lane while in the jungle, monsters will be waiting to attack you.
The gameplay of Vainglory, while similar to that of major scale MOBA’s like LOL and DOTA, introduces other aspects into the game. These aspects include locations like gold mines and minion mines. Minion Mines are guarded by a monster, which when conquered, make your minions stronger. There are two minion mines, each located in one team’s jungle area, in contrast to the gold mine, which sits right in the middle of the map. As the name implies, the gold mine is a location guarded by a monster, who when defeated will give any gold he has mined up until then. At fifteen minutes into the game, the Gold Miner will be killed by the Kraken and the gold mine will no longer produce gold, instead housing the Kraken. However, seeing as the mines only come into play at four minutes into the game, players who are jungling (a gaming term used to refer to those players who reap gold and EXP by fighting in the jungle), should focus on taking out the myriad of monsters in the jungle, many of which give useful drops such as healing elixirs and gold. The Kraken, on the other hand, is an immensely powerful monster and cannot be taken on by less than an entire team, with a few exceptions of course.
Once you have defeated the Kraken, your team gains control of it and it will move, in a lumbering fashion towards the enemy team’s crystal, destroying enemy turrets along the way. However, while the Kraken is captured by one team, it will not attack any of the other team members.
Vainglory gameplay consists of tapping a location of your map to get to it, tapping an enemy to perform a basic attack on them and using your abilities indicated on the bottom of the screen by tapping them. Upon levelling up, players have the option of choosing which ability they wish to rank up. Each ability, when ranked up, will grow stronger and may even gain special effects.
The icons on the bottom left of the screen are the beam back, play next request, info, scoreboard and shop buttons respectively.
The beam back button teleports you back to base within a time delay of three seconds.
The play next request button simply shows you if any of your friends have requested to play with you next.
The info button shows information about your hero’s stats and abilities.
The scoreboard button shows your teams items, levels, kills, deaths, assists and does so similarly with the other team
The shop button only activates when you are near the shop at your spawning point or the shop directly underneath the gold mine.
Now that the trivialities are done with, the main focus as with any MOBA is of the characters. Vainglory, as of now has 27 characters. Each of them have their own unique abilities, heroic perk and builds. They can be broken down into 5 classes.
Assassins are great at isolating and eliminating a single threat with quick, high-damage attacks. They excel at doing a great deal of damage in a short amount of time before disappearing through speed bursts or stealth. Assassins are typically very “squishy” and easy to kill.
Snipers in Vainglory are just long-ranged assassins. They are great at dealing high amounts of damage from far away but generally tend to avoid close quarter combat and drawn out battles.
Mages also enjoy having a great deal of distance between themselves and the enemy. Unlike assassins and snipers, however, mages are adept at doing damage to large areas of the map, and any enemies caught in the area won’t enjoy it.
Warriors are synonymous with “brawlers” who like getting up close and personal to the action. They’re front-line fighters who can take a punch and keep on dishing out damage. It’s common knowledge for a team to employ a warrior to provide front-line damage while a sniper or mage stands back and contributes from afar. Also, take care, while confronting a warrior an assassin may jump in, dish out damage, and just as quickly, jump out.
You can think of the protector as the player who ensures that “squishy” teammates don’t die. They’re often on the front lines with warriors, sometimes “tanking” damage ahead of all the rest. Protectors are usually the most capable heroes at absorbing damage and should always lead the way, especially into uncharted areas of the map where enemy heroes may be lurking or waiting to ambush you. Sometimes protectors specialize in healing instead of absorbing punishment or create shields that absorb damage.
Hopefully this encourages some of you to start playing Vainglory. Its success has been limited by the fact that not many avid gamers consider playing MOBA’s on handheld devices. Vainglory is truly a diamond in the rough, which should be played by gamers of all ages.