Blizzcon is undoubtedly one of the biggest gaming conventions of the year as Blizzard’s games have always been some of the best in the industry with some of the biggest gaming communities in the world and their annual convention in Anaheim, California, and the events and announcements that happen during it are looked forward to every single year by the company’s fans and beyond and this year is one of the biggest Blizzcons ever as the company makes new announcements for their latest games – Heroes of the Storm and Overwatch. We wrap up some of the biggest announcements during the convention’s first day.
Starcraft 2: Legacy of the Void Launch Trailer, Archon Mode, Co-op Missions, Mission Packs
Blizzard opened Blizzcon 2015 with the launch trailer for the third and final installment in the Starcraft 2 trilogy, Legacy of the Void, which features the Protoss campaign of the series. Legacy of the Void concludes the story of Starcraft 2 and covers the Protoss crusade to reclaim their homeworld of Aiur as well as the final war to protect the universe against Amon, the Dark One.
Other than the new Protoss campaign, Legacy of the Void will introduce new units for the game’s multiplayer mode, automated daily online tournaments, a new Archon mode which lets two players share control over a single base against two opponents, and new co-op missions where players can team up to finish action-packed, objective-driven missions.
Blizzard also announced upcoming mission packs that will offer new challenges and experiences in Starcraft 2. The company teased the first mission pack which will start iconic franchise character, Nova. The first three mission packs will be released sometime in Spring 2016.
Legacy of the Void will launch next week on November 10, 2015.
Warcraft Movie Trailer
Blizzard also unveiled the first trailer for the upcoming and highly anticipated Warcraft movie which is set in the time of the first Warcraft video game, Warcraft: Orcs & Humans, which features the story and characters from the franchise including Durotan, Orgrim doomhammer, Blackhand, Gul’dan, Grommash Hellscream, Draka, Garona, Sir Anduin Lothar, Magus Medivh, King Llane Wrynn, Khadgar, Lady Taria Wrynn, Prince Varian Wrynn, Moroes, Varis, and Calen. The movie showcases the origin story as well as the initial encounters and conflicts between the franchise’s original races – the orcs and humans. The Warcraft movie is set to be released on June 10, 2016.
Heroes of the Storm Arena Mode, New Characters and Battlegrounds
Heroes of the Storm has been slowly gaining popularity in the general gaming as well as the MOBA community, gaining more and more ground against older MOBA’s like DOTA 2 and League of Legends thanks to its growing roster of famous heroes as well as its unique and increasing number of battlegrounds where these heroes face-off.
At this year’s Blizzcon, the developer announced a new game mode called Arena where players can pick one of three randomly chosen heroes and a single Heroic Ability then jump into one of three arenas where teams must destroy their opponent’s Core. Once a Core is destroyed, the teams are transported to a new Arena where the next round of battle will commence. Once a team destroys two of their enemy’s Cores, they will win the match.
Blizzard also announced three new characters which will be joining the game’s fast-growing roster of heroes taken from the company’s vast inventory of personalities from each of their gigantic franchises. Specifically, Greymane, Lunara, and Cho’gall will be introduced to the game. And notably, Cho’gall is an incredibly unique character not just in Heroes of the Storm but in the MOBA genre as well as he will be controlled by two separate players and will take up two slots in a team’s roster.
Lastly, a new battleground called Towers of Doom was announced at Blizzcon where players will battle for control over Bell Towers that will fire at the opposing team’s Core when periodically spawning Altars that appear across the battlefield are activated. The more Bell Towers you control when your team activates an Altar, the more damage you’ll be able to inflict onto the opposing team’s Core so controlling as many towers as possible right before an Altar spawns is crucial to winning in Towers of Doom.
The League of Explorers, a New Hearthstone Adventure
Blizzard also announced a new Adventure for its massively popular Hearthstone digital collectible card game. The new Adventure, called The League of Explorers, will contain 4 wings each with its own set of bosses and encounters which players can defeat in exchange for brand-new cards. The new Adventure brings in 45 new obtainable cards including 5 new Legendary cards and a slew of new class-specific cards.
A new mechanic called Discover is also being introduced into the game that will let players choose between three random cards that are usable by their class each time a card with the Discover keyword is played depending on how the Discover keyword is used in the card text. For example, playing a minion with a Battlecry that lets a player Discover a 1-cost card will let the player choose between three randomly chosen 1-cost cards that are usable by their class.
Lastly, the League of Explorers introduces two all-new game boards called Excavation and The Hall of Explorers where players can enjoy playing their matches. The League of Adventurers will be released on November 12 for $19.99 for all four wings of the Adventure, $14.99 if you already own the first wing, $9.99 if you already own the first two wings, and either $6.99 or 700 in-game gold for each individual wing.
New Overwatch Characters/Launch Date/Game Editions/Coming to PC, Playstation 4, Xbox One
Overwatch is undoubtedly one of the games people were looking forward to hearing about and seeing at Blizzcon. The company’s first new and original franchise in over 17 years, Overwatch has been one of the most intriguing games in the industry since it was first announced at last year’s Blizzcon. The new team-based first-person shooter has recently entered its by-invite-only beta test and has so far been received very well by the lucky few who have gotten their hands on it.
At this year’s Blizzcon, the company made a whole slew of amazing announcements for their new franchise. First off, three new characters were announced for the game – Genji, D.VA, and Mei – each with their own unique set of abilities and increasing the current total number of playable characters to twenty one. Secondly, a new map was unveiled called Hollywood which lets players battle it out in a real-looking Hollywood studio lot.
Thirdly, Blizzard also announced a Collector’s Edition and Origins Edition for Overwatch which comes with their own set of physical and/or digital bonuses such as skins for the game’s characters and in-game bonuses for Blizzard’s other games like a card back for Hearthstone, a pet for World of Warcraft, unlocking Tracer in Heroes of the Storm, and more. And lastly, Blizzard announced that Overwatch will be coming not only to PC but also to the Playstation 4 and Xbox One in Spring 2016.
World of Warcraft: Legion
Blizzard announced details on the settings and story of Legion, the upcoming expansion for the most successful MMORPG in history and one of the company’s most successful games, World of Warcraft. In Legion, one of the franchise’s worst villians, the Burning Legion, makes its third attempt at destroying Azeroth with the help of the Orc Warlock, Gul’dan, who is brought from Draenor to Azeroth to open a rift in reality, called the Fel Storm, above the Broken Isles to allow the Burning Legion to once again invade Azeroth.
Long-time enemies, the Alliance and Horde, must once again set their differences aside to unite against the onslaught of the Burning Legion and destroy the Fel Storm. Legion also brings back one of the franchise’s most iconic characters, Illidan Stormrage, who makes his return to the World of Warcraft to take his revenge on the Burning Legion alongside his Illidari. The return of Illidan makes available a new character class in the game, Demon Hunters.
The new expansion will raise the level cap to 110 and introduce a slew of new items including Artifacts, customizable weapons that grow in power as your character does; class-specific Order Halls and followers, new dungeons and raids for players to complete; new world bosses; a new PVP progression system; an improved transmogrification system; improved social features; and a whole lot more.
Blizzard also revealed the opening cinematic of the new expansion which featured two other iconic Warcraft characters, King Varian Wyrnn and Sylvanas Windrunner, side by side as they launch their assault on the Broken Isles to close the Fel Storm and stop Gul’dan and the invading Burning Legion.
World of Warcraft: Legion is set to be released in the summer of 2016 but can be already be pre-ordered now for a one-character boost to level 100 as well as early access to the Demon Hunter class.