BlizzCon 2017 Heroes of the Storm Deep Dive Panel Transcript

Modeling: Hanzo

Andrew: Hi, guys. It is me again. I got a question for you: any Hanzo mains? Come on, it’s a safe place. You can tell us. Hanzo is one my favorite heroes in Overwatch. Now with Alexstrasza, we talked about some of the typical questions that come up when we’re developing a hero; but with Hanzo on the top I wanted to talk to you about what it takes to bring a character from a first person game like Overwatch to a top-down game like Heroes of the Storm.

So the Overwatch team is great. They gave us a lot of amazing reference materials, but all those reference materials are based or cater to a first person camera. Now you are probably saying to yourself: “Why does a first-person camera matter?” Well, Overwatch is a game of first-person perspective, which means that the up-close detail required is high. Now Heroes is a top-down game, which means that all the same details are further away.


This creates a challenge for us when we are bringing a character over from a Blizzard universe, because we need to take a character like Hanzo and make them recognizable from this distance. So a good example of this is actually Hanzo’s bow.

So up top, we’ve got the Overwatch bow, and at the bottom is the Heroes of the Storm bow; and right off you’re probably noticing that the Heroes bow has gotten a little bit larger. The Grip is about the same, but everything else is bigger. Now I want you to pay attention to the center of it here, and all the details have gotten larger.


So it’s gotten bigger, and as you travel down the limb of the bow you’ll notice that the silhouette’s gotten exaggerated as well. Now it’s easy to see, or say that Overwatch characters are simply copy/paste. This can be further from the truth.


In fact, in a moment I’m going to show you exactly what a copy/paste version of Hanzo looks like in Heroes of the Storm. When I do this, I want you to pay attention to the silhouette.


Alright, so there he is. So this looks great in Overwatch, right? But there are some things that we need to do we need to push and pull his trademark features and make him a little bit more recognizable from this game-view.

So here we got the Hanzo from the Heroes of the Storm, and you’ll notice that his silhouette… that’s a little bit more bulkier. Everyone in our game gets a little swollen. It’s true. The chest gets a little bit more beefy, shoulders are more prominent, and for those of you who are fans of the man bun… that got a little bit more bulk as well.

So we’ve been making Hanzo more recognizable from this game-view, which is great; but you’re probably saying something along the lines of “Why are these adjustments necessary?” So in order to explain that, I need to talk about something you probably have heard a video game artist say at one point in time.

And that’s budget. You see… if you’re new to game development, and we say texture budget or polygon budget… we’re not talking about monetary cost. What we’re talking about is file size, and what it takes for your computer to load that information on the screen.


And that’s important because you load a lot of information on the screen. You’ve got minions, mercenary camps, player character’s UI, structures, trees, doodads… all the while making these things recognizable.


Every game has a character budget, just like every computer has a limit. It’s kind of like a road that can only hold so many cars at any given moment.


And it’s important for us to stay within those limits, because then we can put things like this… from Overwatch, into this… Heroes of the Storm. Everything we do is for the game-view. It’s about lovingly recreating these characters, so they look as awesome as possible.


So now that you’ve heard all about why Hanzo looks so good. I am going to hand it over to Kent-Eric who’s going to talk to you more about Hanzo’s power.


1. Modeling: Alexstrasza2. Design: Alexstrasza3. Modeling: Hanzo4. Design: Hanzo
5. Live Heroes Revamp6. Community Q&A

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BlizzCon 2019 Panel Transcripts


Tomas Hernandez is owner of since 2003. I post news about World of Warcraft, StarCraft II, Diablo III, Hearthstone, Overwatch, Heroes of the Storm, Blizzard Careers, and the Warcraft film.

Blizzplanet is a leading fansite covering news about upcoming Blizzard Entertainment licensed products. I also post previews and reviews. I have interviewed book writers and Blizzard game developers.

I was previously an employee of the OGaming Network (2003), and IncGamers (2008-2010). I was a guest newsposter for GosuGamers (World of Warcraft) a few years ago and for (formerly

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