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Netflix Just Gave MOBA And Anime Fans The Best News

Netflix has found solid success in the last few years by embracing both anime and Western animated series crafted in the time-tested anime style. The formula has even worked for video game adaptations, which are notoriously hit or miss. In 2017, fans were delighted by the Adi Shankar and Warren Ellis adaptation of the classic game series Castlevania. The positive response essentially ensured that more of the like would follow. Well, here we are.

With Castlevania heading into its fourth and final season, you might be wondering if Netflix has something else up its sleeve — another anime-style series from a well-known game franchise, perhaps? We already know there won't be any Legend of Zelda in Netflix's future, but it turns out the streamer was keeping another video game adaptation a secret — until now.

MOBA (Multiplayer Online Battle Arena) games are enormously popular right now, especially in the lucrative world of esports. Games like Smite, Heroes of the Storm, and League of Legends dominate the online gaming landscape. But the originator of the genre in its modern form is Valve's Defense of the Ancients a.k.a. DOTA and its popular sequel DOTA 2. The series has been a smash success for the company, so much so that Netflix quietly slipped an animated show based on the game series into development and managed to keep the whole thing a state secret. 

Here's the low-down on DOTA: Dragon's Blood.

DOTA: Dragon's Blood promises dragons and secret missions

DOTA: Dragon's Blood is an eight-episode series focused on a Dragon Knight named Davion who is, according to a Netflix press release, "devoted to wiping the scourge from the face of the world." The scourge, presumably, is dragons. The series will also focus on Princess Mirana who is "on a secret mission of her own," and as you might imagine Davion's quest to kill dragons causes him to "become embroiled in events much larger than he could ever imagine."

The series already has an announcement trailer, and the announcement is a pretty big one — the show will drop on Netflix March 25, 2021, which means Netflix has been keeping this feather secretly in their cap for quite a while.

DOTA 2 is not the first of the major MOBA games to announce an animated series, but it will be the first to see release on a major platform. Riot Games announced their own League of Legends series, entitled Arcane, back in October 2019 in celebration of their flagship franchise's tenth anniversary. Unfortunately, due to COVID-19, the series has been delayed, but is still set for release sometimes in 2021.

DOTA: Dragon's Blood, meanwhile, launches imminently.