It’s that time of the year again, Blizzard hosted it’s annual bonanza, Blizzcon, and there’s news for almost everyone who enjoys Blizzard’s catalog of games. Here are some of the announcements that were made at Blizzcon’s opening ceremony.
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Beginning December later this year, StarCraft II will be free to play for everyone. Players who do not have any of the StarCraft II games will be given Wings of Liberty campaign free, and those who own Wings of Liberty, you will be given the Heart of the Swarm free.
In addition to that, players will also be allowed free access to StarCraft II’s ranked ladder, and access to every Co-op commander free up to level 5.
See you on the battlefield, Commander.
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Heroes of the Storm
Hanzo and Alexstrasza will enter the Nexus with a new map, Dragonshire. Hanzo will be a ranged dps hero, and Alexstrasza will occupy the role of a ranged support hero.
Hearthstone’s latest expansion Kobolds and Catacombs is set to be the most refreshing addition to Hearthstone yet. Adding a new keyword Recruit, and whole new way to play the game.
The Recruit keyword will pull a random card from your deck and put it immediately into play. Each class will also get a legendary weapon. For example, Priests will get Dragon Soul, a 3 mana, 0/3 card that will summon a 5/5 Dragon whenever you cast 3 spells a turn.
The Dungeon run is a rogue-like where you will need to defeat 8 random bosses. Starting with 10 cards, each boss will grant you new cards after defeating them, increasing your power. Like in a traditional rogue-like, a loss will result in you losing all your progress, in this case all your cards, and you’ll need to start all over again.
Kobolds and Catacombs will be available this December and will round out Hearthstone’s Year of the Mammoth.
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A new map will join the Overwatch map pool and early next year, Overwatch will welcome, Blizzard World. Blizzard World is a hybrid map, containing a capture point and a payload. If those terms seem foreign to you, ask a Zenyatta main on your team, he might be able to point you in the right direction.
With the release of the map, several Overwatch heroes will also be getting some skins inspired by Blizzard’s other games.
Moira (full name Moira O’Deorain), a geneticist working for Talon, is the newest hero to join the Overwatch roster. A support, Moira is an incredibly versatile hero who can heal her team mates, and deal a whole lot of damage. In Jeff’s own words, she’s OPAF.
Her abilities highlight the duality of the hero, a healer who is a ‘bad guy’ at the same time. She has a short ranged blink ability, and the ability to deploy spheres that can either heal allies or damage opponents. Her ultimate once again allows her to heal allies or damage opponents in the same beam.
World of Warcraft
World of Warcraft’s newest expansion, Battle for Azaroth pitches age old rivals, the noble Alliance and powerful Horde against one another. Bringing back old favorites like Sylvanas, Jaina, and Anduin. This expansion will seek to renew allegiances as players will need to decide once and for all. Will you stand with the Alliance or will they fight FOR THE HORDE!
Outside of gaming, the WoW community has done tremendous work when it comes to charity donating over 15 million dollars to charitable causes over the years. This year, the sale of the in-game pet Shadows supported the relief efforts for disasters all over the world. In addition to that, Blizzard will also be releasing a plush of Shadow, with proceeds from the sales up to the end of the year going to the same beneficiary.