The past weekend may have been the usual for normies, but gamers were tuned in to (and some chosen lucky bastards actually flew to Anaheim, Calfiornia to attend) video game behemoth Blizzard Entertainment’s annual event. To celebrate the 11th BlizzCon, we did you a solid and rounded up 11 of the biggest news from the event. (Also, we figured some of you had lives and weren’t able to catch everything.)
11. Heroes of the Storm: Now With More Talking
Why spam the chat with angry emoticons when you can shout out expletives to teammates using voice chat? Actually, don’t do that because it’s a dick move. Expect better camera angles, target frames, and long laning sessions with the 2018 updates.
10. The Double Dragons of HotS
Hanzo from Overwatch and Alexstrasza from World of Warcraft join Heroes of the Storm! Definitely an inspired choice what with Hanzo’s dragon themed attack and Alexstrasza turning into a massive fire-breathing dragon. Hanzo will play an assassin hero with high range and low speed. Alexstrasza will play a support hero who can heal and unleash aerial damage. You can see them in action in the Dragons of the Nexus cinematic.
9. Hearthstone’s Dungeon Run
This single-player, free-to-play mode gives you 10 pre-selected cards that you’ll use to face against eight randomized bosses. With every victory, you can choose between gaining a special artifact to boost your gameplay or more cards for your deck. The difficulty increases with every battle and if you fuck up, you lose everything and must go back to the start.
8. The Kobolds & Catacombs Expansion
When the storylines of other Blizzard titles get too gloomy and real AF, you can count on Hearthstone to lighten things up. The upcoming installment introduces 135 cards, legendary weapons for each class, and new cards that cast boosting spells and additional effects when activated.
7. Play StarCraft II For Free!
Not enough minerals? Don’t freak because all modes in SCII are officially free-to-play including the first campaign Wings of Liberty. And if you already bought WoL then you’ll instantly unlock the next one, Heart of the Swarm, for free!
6. Overwatch Skins Based On Blizzard Games
“Ah, fresh meat!” Yep, you read that right! Your faves will be cosplaying characters from other titles. We’ve got Roadhog as the Butcher from Diablo and Widowmaker as the equally hot Nova Terra from StarCraft. These will be available next year as part of regular loot boxes so you’ll have time to save up.
5. Overwatch Drops The Reinhardt Cinematic
The game’s shorts are animated so well that it’s been compared to Pixar quality. (Make a series already!) Honor And Glory doesn’t disappoint and follows the Reinhardt’s younger years with the Crusaders. Turns out, he was a bit of a dick back then with a habit of overextending. But without spoiling anything, his road to character development made us shed all the manly tears.
4. World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth
Whether you fight for the Alliance or the Horde, you’ll be hella stoked to join the epic battle to reclaim/defend the lands. The seventh WoW expansion, coming out next year, increases the level cap to 120 and adds three new races per faction. The new Plunder mode lets you loot treasure from islands and there’s a 20-person co-op raid called Warfronts.
3. Meet Talon’s Sinister Support
Hollah at all the Support mains ’coz y’all got a new Hero or should we say...villain! Moira O’Deorain is a Support/Offense fighter who sports freaky talons (hehe), which she uses to heal her allies and suck the life out of her foes. And she hits the pop culture bingo by being modeled after David Bowie’s Ziggy Stardust persona and being voiced by Genevieve O’Reilly, who plays Mon Mothma in the Star Wars prequels. (And bonus points for running like Naruto!)
2. WoW Classic Goes Back To Basics
Are you overwhelmed with the amount of WarCraft expansions that make you go, “I’m too old for this shit?” Hearken to a simpler time and feed your nostalgia as Blizzard gives us the vanilla server we’ve all been waiting for. Due to requests from the fandom, the company finally decided to build a server similar to the launch title back in 2004. No release date yet but damn if this wasn’t a surprising announcement.
This is not a drill! The new Overwatch map is a virtual theme park—with rides, arcades, the works—featuring shout-outs to Diablo, StarCraft, World of Warcraft, Hearthstone, Heroes of the Storm, and more. It’s the Blizzard fanboy’s wetdream! The trailer shows a recreation of Azeroth, a gigantic pylon, the Hearthstone Tavern, just to name a few. Sadly, they’re not building one IRL anytime soon but a gamer can dream, right?
BONUS! Brigitte Lindholm Is Your Virtual Bae
Torbjörn’s daughter previously appeared in the comics Dragon Slayer and Reflections, but her cameo in Honor And Glory highlighted all her assets in glorious CG. She’s the thiccc and ripped mechanic we didn’t know we needed in our lives.