The Frostivus Festival in the world of DOTA 2 has been cancelled for the third time in a row, but instead of a grinch-like new enemy appearing to combat festive cheer, this time Valve has a different and quite exciting excuse.

While in previous years the cancelled Frostivus Festival has been down to The Greevling and Wraith Night appearing and creating new in-game events for players to enjoy, this time the devs will be working on an engine update for the game. Valve decided that committing resources to a winter-themed game mode would leech too much manpower from the work, but have promised that this doesn’t mean there aren’t any more feature-filled patches incoming.

Players of DOTA 2 have already lost their much-loved annual halloween update Diretide to an engine update that the team is working on, but Valve explains that the resource-intensive updates for Diretide and Frostivus would only have to be rebuilt from the ground up if released before the improvements to the engine rather than after. Because of this the devs decided to focus resources on getting the engine improvements ready quicker instead.

One of the main features coming in improvements to the engine will be the ability to rapidly create entirely new game modes. The DOTA 2 Workshop Tools Alpha that began earlier this year showed some of this work.

We also know that Source 2 is in development and some evidence of it can already be found within DOTA 2. Is it possible that it will be the first game Valve debuts running on its Source 2 engine? One way or another it’s clear that a lot of exciting updates are on the way for DOTA 2, and every sign that once Valve’s engine improvements are done, plenty more content (perhaps even a successful Frostivus!) will be headed to the game.

Is Valve the Greevling that stole Frostivus? Or do you think it's got some grander plans up its sleeve for next year beyond minor engine updates? Let us know what you think!