It may seem absurd to compare Multiplayer Online Battle Arena (MOBA) games to popular, global team sports like basketball and soccer. However, the reason MOBA gaming is so popular is because it has quite a lot in common with them. Like these team sports, MOBA gaming also has certain similar traits that have granted it an almost universal appeal.
The foremost reason that MOBA gaming is so pervasive and popular is because just about everyone can participate. Most people these days have computers and a lot of them use their computers for gaming, whether frequently or occasionally. The great thing about MOBA games is that they do not have high system requirements and so, they can be played on computers that are not too high-powered. Furthermore, most MOBA games are free and usually, a disc does not have to be purchased. Rather, most of these games can be downloaded online without paying anything.
Compared to video games from other genres, MOBA games are actually fairly accessible. Playing these games tends to be relatively easy, especially because the characters in these games have limited powers and the controls tend to be straightforward. Even understanding the objectives is generally easy. Players know what lanes they have to run down in order to find enemies and the towers that have to be destroyed are also quite obvious.
No doubt, players who get too comfy may end up playing poorly, which may affect their team negatively. However, that does not change the fact that getting into and learning the basics of MOBA games can be quite easy, but at the same time, mastering them requires practice. Like any sport, the fact that mastering these games requires practice and takes time makes them even more popular.
Apart from playing them, watching others play MOBA games tends to be equally entertaining. Live matches are constantly being streamed on websites like Twitch.tv and thousands of gaming enthusiasts tune into watch them. MOBA games have not only been developed to be easy to access and play, they are also easy to watch and understand for the audience.
Ultimately, MOBA games are just another form of e-sports and they are popular for the same reasons. Another major reason being that many people enjoy being competition and are fond of playing competitive games. As easy as MOBA games happen to be, the key to leading a team to victory is to proper execution and skill.
This is why MOBA gaming can be compared to traditional sports. Playing MOBA games on a competitive level, may actually require a greater skillset than that possessed by an average gamer. However, the great thing about these games, as mentioned, is that just about anyone can start playing them and strive to master them.
Hence, just like the popularity of traditional sport is likely never to wane, the popularity of MOBA gaming will also keep on growing. Moreover, just like there are those who enjoy and prefer watching traditional sports rather than participating in them, MOBA gaming happens to be entertaining and fun enough that people can just watch these games being played.
Here is the definition of MOBA games from Wikipedia.