DoTA clones, or Lord Management games if you are in the know, are kind of hard to talk about in general. In general they are highly polished, high skill based, and are based around an almost insurmountable learning curve. History has not been favorable to these kinds of games, as most of the time they are more classified in what they change for the worse from the core formula. While this has led to a kind of stagnation in the emerging genre it hasn’t entirely snuffed out interesting ideas as Forge changes the action from overhead and feeling like a WarCraft mod to feeling more like a first person shooter.
Far from the first game to attempt some of the innovations— persistent levels, first person perspective, and a fantasy setting have been done a handful of times before—there is definitely a pace that sets Forge apart from the rest of the genre. Something akin to the break neck speed of Unreal, down to the inclusion of wall jumps, the game feels less plotting and skill administration as in a League of Legends match and more about movement not giving others a clear shot; more like Call of Duty.
The inherit problem with any of these games is the depth, required learning curve, and eventual problems with the community. For the most part it would be like jumping into a tennis match with someone who is globally ranked while one is still trying to figure out the rules; the problem is basically that there are expectations from both ends that are not going to be met in a satisfactory way. Even though I am not against a game being solely multiplayer it seems that message has been taken to mean that there doesn’t need to be any way to get any player simply past the functional use of controls phase of a skill set.
There is nothing wrong with Forge; as a matter of fact it does some very interesting things with controls and perspective of play for the genre. The problems come from the language that is commonplace to communicate the experience to the player in this type of game. For people that already understand the flow, skill reset, and roles of most types of classes in this game it honestly proves to be an interesting diversion from the standard entries. The issue isn’t that it doesn’t do enough different from the games that came before it, and probably inspired sections of it, the problem is that it doesn’t do enough to change anything that was keeping people away from that type of experience.