The Lost Vikings and Rock’N Roll Racing are now free-to-play as a digital download. Go to your Battle.net account, and visit the Download Client page (USA) | (EU).
A few months ago, Blizzard Entertainment also released Blackthorne. It seems Blizzard might want newer fans to experience and know this characters. During the PAX East 2014, a fan asked if we would ever see Blackthrone and other Blizzard classic games characters in Heroes of the Storm, to which Dustin Browder the developers will discuss that.
Imagine fighting in Heroes of the Storm as Blackthorne with his shotgun, and explosive devices. Running away, and turning around his arm to shoot those behind him while running.
How about playing as any of the three Lost Vikings? Or even as all of three of them at the same time? (Could that even be possible? Well, look at Abathur — yes, it can.)
How about one of the Rock’N Roll Racing vehicles? Seeing how Blizzard added the Siege Tank, and it has its own set of unique talents, it might be possible. Imagine shooting oil on the ground to make Heroes slide and fall, or to slow them down? Machine gunning down Heroes too, or knocking them back with a sudden burst of speed. All that sounds fun.
Nova is a nasty little hero – a ranged assassin. She’s a predator, a ganker, pure and simple. She can lane and pick up a few talents that boost her laning potential, but Nova shines when she’s cloaked, stalking, and punishing heroes low on life. Or not low on life. With a single ally nearby, Nova can bring almost anyone down. She’s fragile though, and a few hits from enemies is enough to kill her. Used correctly, Nova is brutal and terrifying. Used poorly, she’s free food.
We’re in the process of releasing a new patch for the Heroes of the Storm Technical Alpha. Complete patch notes can be found below, and keep your eye on the April 29 Maintenance thread to find out when the Nexus is back online.
Custom Games have been disabled.
Attempting to create a Custom Game will now cause the following error message to display: “Error: Custom Games are not allowed.”
The Art of War slow search radius decreased from 8 to 5.
Bug Fixes General
A bundle’s individual components can no longer be purchased separately if that bundle is already owned.
Blur effects no longer cause game screens to appear solid red when Shaders are set above Low on a Mac.
Fixed an issue which incorrectly awarded 2000 Gold upon reaching both levels 4 and 5. Gold is no longer awarded at level 4, though level 5 still grants 2000 Gold.
Hero Quests were granting fewer experience points than intended, and now award the following XP amounts:
Quest 1: 150,000 XP
Quest 2: 300,000 XP
Quest 3: 750,000 XP
Quest 4: 1,125,000 XP
Quest 5: 2,250,000 XP
Quest 6: 3,000,000 XP
(Please note: Neither of these progression system fixes are retroactive. If you earned 2000 gold by reaching level 4 before today’s patch, it’s yours to keep. Further, you will not receive additional XP to compensate for Hero Quest completed prior to today’s patch, but completing a Hero Quests from now on should reward the XP values above.)
Heroes and Talents
Tassadar’s Force Wall now correctly blocks pathing.
Li Li’s Blinding Wind can no longer affect Grave Golems.
Corrected an issue which caused Sgt. Hammer to deal less attack damage in Siege Mode than intended.
Several abilities and talents are now properly usable between the upper and lower levels of Haunted Mines.
I’ve played about twenty games of Heroes since I was inducted into the Alpha about a week back. The first few were against bots, with bots, but once versus opened up I jumped in and went to town. I don’t know what my record is and I don’t care much to know – what I do know is that collecting and using the environmental boons is the most fun I’ve had as a support player in a long, long time.
Creep stacking is boring. It get tedious quickly, you never reap the rewards from it directly, and you spend most of your time dodging enemies, watching a clock, and trying to ensure the ancients are piled high enough for your AM to butcher.Sure, there’s some quirky fun to be had pulling creeps, stacking neutrals, XP denying by raiding camps, but it’s an empty sort of fun. I’m working for someone else. My decisions have been made for me. I want to help and that means creep stacking and babysitting.
Heroes of the Storm has freed me from that routine. I still babysit the assassins and warriors; but it feels less obligatory. They’re capable and nasty from the get go. My presence with a shield or HoT just amplifies their threat. I can wander and collect tributes, help control or contest shrines, hoard doubloons to buy artillery bombardments. I like that. The maps are small enough to give me room to work, to hit merc camps and wittle them down, but to slide back into a fight and shield Kerrigan before she dies. I’m out of the fighting, but not entirely. I get to help my team but I’m not stuck stacking creeps.
Instead, my tributes weaken minions and towers. My doubloons get cannon fire. I’m useful in an active sense, not a passive one. I got twenty skulls and made our golem even better. I like helping my team. I love contributing to fights with heals and buffs, stuns, and crowd control. I can do that, and I can power us up with a rampaging Dragon Knight who breathes fire and kicks enemies.
Purchasing a new Hero is a big deal. You earn gold when you level up, and when you complete certain daily quests which reward gold in addition to XP (experience).
The shop allows you to purchase new heroes with this gold, or you also have the option to buy with real money. Whenever you buy a new Hero, that hero plays a short animation celebrating that you have unlocked him/her.
Below is a short video showing Brightwing, Li Li Stormstout, Naziba the Witch Doctor, Malfurion Stormrage and Muradin Bronzebeard.
A wonderful Heroes of the Storm Community Creation.
“I AM THE SWARM!” – KERRIGAN, QUEEN OF BLADES
The inhabitants of the Nexus and their visitors come in all shapes and sizes. From the smallest baby murloc up through the looming presence of the Lord of Terror, there are an impressive assortment of personalities that crave to test their skills on the many Battlegrounds scattered about the Nexus.
Illustrating Blizzard heroes vying for dominance is no easy task, but artist Xuezhi Wang, Magiclefty has created a number of impressive pieces of art featuring familiar heroes from the farthest reaches of Azeroth, Sanctuary, and the Koprulu Sector doing just that. In this Community Showcase, we wanted to share with you a small sample of this artist’s impressive body of work. Source
The latest patch has introduced a different UI experience simplifying how players access features.
Previously, you could check out daily quests by clicking the yellow exclamation mark at the top-right when in the main lobby. Now these can be found by clicking your level icon located at that same spot. Clicking your level opens up your profile hub.
In this new Profile Hub you can now see four tabs: Profile Summary, Hero Quests, Daily Quests and Match History.
Profile Summary and Match History are not currently available in the Technical Alpha. The Match History sounds interesting. Makes you wonder what Blizzard is planning to do with that type of data.
Play Lobby: Heroes Menu Overhaul
The Heroes menu which allowed you to pick which hero to play as, used to be a horizontal row of tall Hero portraits. You used left or right arrows to browse through available heroes not displayed in the front. Only 17 Heroes fit onscreen.
After the patch, the hero selection UI has been simplified showing only the face of the Hero inside an hexagonal shape. Now 28 Heroes fit onscreen without having to scroll left or right.
Battlegrounds: Custom Games
Before the new patch, players would go to the Play-> Standard tab – where they could pick one of three gameplay modes: Practice, Coop, and Versus. In this new patch, Blizzard opened up the second tab: Custom Games.
Essentially, Custom Games allows a player to choose which Battleground in specific they wish to play in.
You can invite friends as allies still, but the curious thing about this new feature is that you can also choose who the enemy players can be. You can either invite friends to play as enemies, or you can fill all slots with enemy AI. Note: The 5 Enemy Slots (with the “+” sign) can be seen on the right-side of the screen by the edge.
If you choose to fill all enemy slots with AI, then you can hover over the enemy slots and right click to open a sub-menu which allows you to choose difficulty: Beginner, Recruit, Adept, Veteran, Elite. You can also kick an enemy from that slot within that submenu. You also have the option to choose the difficulty for each individual enemy slot and combine. For example:
Alternatively, after you fill all 5 enemy slots with AI, you can kick one or more AI to invite friends in the enemy slots. That means you could play against 2 enemy players and 3 enemy AI if you wished to.
Skins, Mounts, Abilities UI
Before the patch, to change your skin, and mounts didn’t look so user-friendly. You had to click a right or left arrow to navigate your options.
After the patch, now you get a visual representation of the choices available to change your skin and mount before you queue to a game.
Skins UI Change
There was a slight change in the Skins UI. Before the patch, the Skin navigation UI only showed the face area. Now you see the model from head to hip to visualize better your options. That comes handy when Blizzard keeps adding more skins.
One of the most welcomed changes to the Shop is the Talents page. Before the patch, the player had all the talents displayed as icons. You had to hover your mouse over each individual icon to read a pop up tooltip. After the patch, you have to click the level 1, level 4, level 7 icons to see all the talents available for that specific level. All talents are displayed without the need to hover. It is really appreciated to be able to read all the talents per level in one go in order to compare and choose.
I will post about the Shop Bundles in another article found here, which allows you to buy Heroes with real money by Franchise (Diablo, Warcraft, StarCraft). One can save with these bundles which include skin variations and mounts.
Another week, another new hero spotlight! Blizzard Entertainment provided further details about the one of the four new heroes revealed last week at PAX East 2014.
The spotlight now falls upon Brightwing, the faerie dragon.
“YOUR INSIDES TASTE LIKE BERRIES!”
– BRIGHTWING, FAERIE DRAGON
Cute does not equal harmless, and Brightwing the Faerie Dragon is a mischievous little dragon with a big appetite who hails from the Warcraft universe. In Heroes of the Storm, Brightwing takes on the role of a high-mobility Support healer, so you’ll definitely want to stay on her good side when you battle in the Nexus!
The Faerie Dragons of Ashenvale are known for their playful demeanor, seemingly disappearing at a whim. The mischievous Brightwing is no exception, often materializing out of nowhere to save her allies, or simply to mock her foes. But don’t let her endearing appearance and upbeat attitude fool you: this brightly-colored, fluffy-antennaed, fairy-winged dragon has a fondness for fluttering through the meadow… and slaying enemy Heroes for the fun of it!
Instead of using a mount, Brightwing is able to teleport to an ally Hero using “Phase Shift” [Z]. This mobility-focused ability can be especially useful on Dragonshire, where Brightwing’s “Phase Shift” can help teammates secure objectives on the other side of the map.
Stay near your teammates! Brightwing’s combat trait “Soothing Mist” will automatically heal any allies next to her after a short amount of time.
“Arcane Flair” [Q] has a short cast time, so try using it as a zoning tool, rather than simply as a source of damage.
Use “Polymorph” [W] on huge targets such as Tassadar’s Twilight Messiah, Stitches, or Diablo!
“CAN’T CATCH ME!”
Brightwing’s starting skin is a colorful addition to the menagerie of playable Heroes available in Heroes of the Storm. Just watch out – if she sends a thoughtful smile your way, she might be imagining how you’d taste slathered in BBQ sauce!
The newest Brightwing alternative skin we’re revealing is one that any aspiring royalty or butterfly aficionado is sure to appreciate!
• Monarch Brightwing – Just like the flawless butterfly from which she takes her name, Monarch Brightwing has many ways to sting. Kneel peasant! For you face the Monarch! And her wrath is cruel…
“I’VE GOT YOUR HEAD! OH, DID YOU NEED IT BACK?”
– BRIGHTWING, FAERIE DRAGON
Brightwing comes from a long line of Faerie Dragons who first appeared in Warcraft III’s expansion Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne, which premiered in 2003!
Faerie Dragons have also been called Sprite Darters and Fey Dragons.
While Faerie Dragons are not true dragons, they have a longstanding history within Azeroth.
Entrusted with protecting the Emerald Dream, Faerie Dragons have the unique ability to phase out of reality.
Faerie Dragons have long shared a kinship with the Night Elves, and after the second invasion of the Burning Legion, Malfurion Stormrage summoned Faerie Dragons from the realm of the Emerald Dream in order to help purge the Night Elf forests of demonic magics.
While Faerie Dragons were once called into service briefly during the night elves’ hunt for Illidan, the vast majority of them have since returned to the Emerald Dream. The only large populations left on Azeroth are located in the untainted forests of Feralas and Ashenvale, but some can also be found in Mount Hyjal, the Stonetalon Mountains, Tirisfal Glades, the Blade’s Edge Mountains, and even in Pandaria!
Despite Brightwing’s apparent preference for eating her playmates, in the World of Warcraft quest, “Food for Baby“, Agnar Beastamer reveals that Sprite Darters are actually omnivores.
In the World of Warcraft quest “Inciting the Elements,” players in Mount Hyjal are told to use tasty Juniper Berries in order to gain the trust of local Faerie Dragons so that they can reveal the location of stealthed enemies nearby. It’s like a game of hide and seek – berries for blood!
Players within World of Warcraft are able to summon a Faerie Dragon companion pet by obtaining aSprite Darter Egg.
The Sprite Darter Pet Journal entry from World of Warcraft reads – “These adorable critters love snuggling with their owners after a long day of brutal, bloody battle.”
While few Faerie Dragons choose to speak, Brightwing has quite a lot to say!
Brightwing believes that nature is magic, and friendship is delicious!
Her favorite games are Heartstone, Hide and Eat, and Starving Starving, Faerie Dragon!
“The Emerald Dream is not a dream and has no emeralds. Deep thought. Head hurts now.” – Brightwing
A silly hunter tried to tame Brightwing once. Once.
Over the years, many talented artists have illustrated Faerie Dragons, Sprite Darters, and other Fey Dragons from the Warcraft universe. Below are two fantastic pieces of fan art and a cosplay featuring these colorful creatures, which were submitted by talented artisans from around the globe.
Faerie Dragons have a longstanding history within the Warcraft universe, and their participation in various notable events is certain to have had a hand in shaping both Azeroth’s past and present. If you’re interested in encountering more of Brightwing’s kin, make sure to check out the following Blizzard games: