Dota: Dragon’s Blood is the lesser-known of two Netflix animated series based on popular MOBA; the other one, Arcane, is something you’ve probably heard of before. You’d be forgiven for knowing about that one and not Dragon’s Blood. Or Dragon’s Blood: Book 2, for that matter, which is the second season of the animated series that aired this January. The issue is that even I didn’t know about it despite being the biggest (and only) Dota 2 superfan at Fanbyte.
I’ve logged several thousand hours into the game since the beta — even before its official launch in 2013. I’ve flown out and attended The International (the Dota 2 world championship that pays out millions of dollars in prize money) in person four times. And while I’ve lapsed in recent years, I still have a deep fondness for the game — one that led me to watch Dota: Dragon’s Blood at release (despite the fact that I don’t usually watch Netflix at all and only keep the subscription going for my parents to enjoy).
The show is fine, too! One of its original characters, Marci, even made her way into the game itself. She’s fun to play; the show is fun to watch, even if it is a little grimdark in the “everything is trying to recapture the magic of the Castlevania Netflix series” sorta way. Dota 2 the video game is actually extremely silly and goofy by comparison. Every character is a living pun machine, and the animated shorts produced by developer Valve Software are also very lighthearted.
Still, in spite of the blood and guts and orgies not really jibing with the source material, it’s cool to see the characters I’ve known for years interacting more directly onscreen. It would have also been cool to see them in Season 2 — if literally anyone had told me it was out.
Maybe this is on me for simply not checking Netflix enough. I still figure someone, somewhere, should have found a way to market Book 2 to me. Yet it feels like the season utterly came and went: lost in the never-ending sea of Netflix tie-ins, cancellations, and awful original movies starring big-name Hollywood actors. I got halfway through today’s Netflix Geeked 2022 announcement of Dragon’s Blood Season 3 before I even realized they weren’t talking about Season 2 at all.
Netflix truly is in a weird spot right now. I’m hardly the first person to point this out. The company is searching for more and more ways to squeeze blood from more and more stones. One of those is by chasing games (not just tie-in series, but actual playable products). But I’m starting to understand now just how weird and possibly out-of-touch the company has become when it can’t even get a show in front of its 100 percent intended audience.
Then again: maybe I’m just really out of the loop.
Netflix Geeked 2022 is just one part of the Fanbyte Hot Game Summer 2022 coverage. This is where we bring you recaps, commentary, and just plain fun observations we care about during this summer’s game presentations. This includes events like the Xbox & Bethesda Showcase, the PC Gaming Show, and the all-encompassing Summer Game Fest hosted by Geoff Keighley. If you’re interested in seeing all of Fanbyte’s coverage, you can also check out our Hot Game Summer 2022 hub!