There's no denying that Defense of the Ancients may be one of the most popular, if not the most popular, mods ever made. Most people equate the game with Warcraft III when the sub-genre known as MOBA blew up in the competitive PC gaming scene. Now everybody and their grandmother wants to make a DOTA-like game with League of Legends arguably being the most popular of the bunch.
For the fans of the genre, you might not know the true origins of DOTA though. This handy infographic from our friends at GameArena sets the record straight on one of the most popular game types in the world. The first big shocker is that DOTA has been around since the days of the first StarCraft with a mod called Aeon of Strife. The mod was then carried over into WarCraft III where it was eventually formed into DOTA.
From this point, the popularity exploded leading up to the creation of DOTA All-Stars. Once All-Stars had become big enough to be featured at BlizzCon, the genre really took off. This is what led to the creation of titles like League of Legends and the upcoming DOTA 2 from Valve. Blizzard has also jumped into the game announcing Blizzard DOTA, a mod for StarCraft 2.
As you can see, DOTA has a long and storied history. It's still going to be best known as that awesome WarCraft III mod, but others are taking the genre into new and interesting places.