I compose this post in memory of Mr Matt Lees, the nice man who used to write for us before those filthy Videogamer pushers seduced him away.
If you know anything about Matt, you'll know he likes a bit of MOBA - sorry, that's Multiplayer Online Battle Arena, for those who haven't played Awesomenauts, Monday Night Combat or Guardians of Middle-earth. I'm not sure what Matt thinks of the Gears of War series, but I suspect he'll be tickled to learn that the latest instalment, Judgment, is heavily MOBA-flavoured.
"I'm a big fan of eSports," multiplayer lead Quinn DelHoyo told Forbes in an interview. "There are a few people here at Epic Games that are as well. When it comes to anything with sports - I was a football coach. I love sports, all that competition."
According to DelHoyo, Epic looked beyond rival shooters for inspiration when it came to designing Judgment's new modes, one of which lets players duke it out using both COG troops and the full range of Locust beasties for the first time ever. "When you look at OverRun, which is our competitive class-based multiplayer mode, it actually has influences from MOBA games like League of Legends and Dota, where you have a map and there are three lanes on those games.
"In our game, we decided to have two lanes on all the OverRun maps," he went on. "You have a left and a right lane to make the combat focused and intense and fast paced. That was one of the influences we had in making the game."
MOBA games are popular on the pro gaming circuit. DelHoyo reckons OverRun is also a fine choice for e-sports consumption, as its class structure makes it easy for a spectator to follow. "From a spectator perspective because it's a third person camera, OverRun is good for eSports because you can see who the player is controlling.
"And with the monsters that are in OverRun with the Locusts and all the other classes that are easily defined, someone that's commentating or casting could easily hypothesize, 'This guy is a boomer or a mauler and this is what he can do. These are his abilities.' If he has a Kantus coming by him, you can predict what is going to happen. And that builds the drama and the intensity that people that watch sports or eSports really enjoy."
For more on Judgment, read Log's extravagantly worded preview.