Anyone who is a fan of strategy and fast-paced gameplay is likely already aware of the impact that Dota Auto Chess had upon the gaming community. Originally released in 2019, this chess-based top-down platform reached no fewer than 8.5 million subscribers only a handful of months after its introduction. Thus, it should come as no surprise that many other developers sought to capitalise upon such momentum. This is why similar platforms such as Dota Underlords (produced by Valve) and Teamfight Tactics in League of Legends (Riot Games) have already entered their own iterations into the marketplace. However, we have to ask an interesting question. Why has Auto Chess failed to enjoy the level of mainstream coverage that other genres have already achieved? Does all of the hype equate to nothing more than a proverbial flash in the pan? Let's take a look at some predominant theories.
Strong Marketing Competition
Many gaming enthusiasts cite this issue as the main problem. Unlike major developers such as Riot Games and Valve, AutoChess developers do not seem to have nearly as much of a market share in terms of their audience base. While the game may have been a large hit throughout Central and Eastern Europe, it received relatively little exposure in the Western world.
Issues with Translation
Although this might seem like a major problem, it has undoubtedly been a turn-off for some players. They have noted that a handful of playable characters have not yet been equipped with English voices. Those which can speak English are sometimes poorly translated. This shows that the developers are not yet focusing upon foreign marketplaces (although this could also change in the future).
Compared to Its Closest Counterparts
It is just as wise to look at how this game stacks up to similar platforms such as Dota Underlords and Teamfight Tactics. Perhaps the most striking advantage of Underlords is that it contains the most Dota 2 characters, as well as it offering additional options such as the ability to select item drops.
In terms of Teamfight Tactics, most of the characters are derived from the popular League of Legends platform. Also, Riot Games has included a draft-based system that is not present in AutoChess.
While these contrasting elements might not seem overly important, we need to keep in mind that many players prefer a sense of familiarity. This could be a possible drawback and one of the reasons why the hype surrounding AutoChess seems to have faded.
Still, let's stress that AutoChess is by no means a "hidden" game. It still enjoys a strong following. If the developers stepped up their marketing campaigns, the chances are high that this franchise would enjoy just as much popularity.