Zadina

Zarya Patch Is Live

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The Machines of War update concludes with the arrival of Zarya and Warhead Junction, as well as quite a few undocumented balance changes.

The second big patch of the Machines of War update is available on live servers and players can get their hands on the new heroine, Zarya. She is the second Overwatch hero to join the Heroes of the Storm cast and her abilities are quite similar to her Overwatch counterpart. You can read more about her here. Don't forget to tune in for the Brawl with the Blues stream today! Here is a video showcasing her capabilities:

We have three major hero reworks this time: Nazeebo, Chen and E.T.C. all had their extreme makeovers and are ready to conquer the meta! Quite a few undocumented balance changes, that weren't available in the PTR, were also deployed with this patch. These changes affect Alarak, Chromie, Gul'dan, The Butcher, Li Li, Anub'arak and Chen.  The previously announced buffs to Valla, Tychus' Odin heroic and changes to Braxis Holdout are also included.

Moreover, the patch contains a fix for the special event quest tracking. Here's what it is about:

Blizzard LogoRavinix

The upcoming Zarya update will also include a fix for the Machines of War special event quest progress tracking. After the patch is live in your region, all Artifact Pieces collected by your team will count towards each individual player’s “Collect 150 Artifact Pieces” quest progress.

Please note: This will only affect games played after the Zarya update. You will not be granted retroactive progress for any Artifact Pieces gathered by your team prior to this patch.

This should allow everyone ample time to complete their quests before the Machines of War are disabled.

Thanks! (source)

Lastly, this patch adds the Warhead Junction battleground in the game. You can see an overview video of the battleground along with the patch notes below:

Blizzard LogoBlizzard Entertainment

 

General

New Map Rotation

  • Starting September 27, the pool of Battlegrounds available in all modes, except Custom Games, will be temporarily limited to the following:
    • Warhead Junction
    • Braxis Holdout
    • Towers of Doom
    • Dragon Shire
    • Battlefield of Eternity
    • Cursed Hollow
  • During this time, players can still select and play on any Battleground they wish using Custom Games.
  • The reduced Battleground pool will remain in effect until the Machines of War event concludes during the week of October 17.

 

Tutorial Improvements

  • The second tutorial mission has received significant changes to gameplay, user interface, and instruction flow. This mission should now better serve to introduce players to some of Heroes of the Storm’s unique mechanics.

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New Hero: Zarya

Aleksandra Zaryanova is one of the world's strongest women and was a promising athlete, but all that changed when the Siberian omnium reawakened. As a soldier in the Russian Defense Force, she now proudly uses her strength to protect the ones she loves.

Trait

  • Energy
    • Each time Zarya’s Personal Barrier or Shield Ally absorbs 10 damage, her Energy is increased by 1. Each point of Energy increases Zarya’s damage by 2%. After 0.5 seconds, Energy decays by 3 per second.

Basic Abilities

  • Particle Grenade (Q)
    • Launch a Particle Grenade that deals damage to enemies within a small area. Deals 50% damage to Structures.
  • Personal Barrier (W)
    • Gain a Shield that absorbs damage for 3 seconds.
  • Shield Ally (E)
    • Grants an allied Hero a Shield that absorbs damage for 3 seconds.

Heroic Abilities

  • Graviton Surge (R)
    • Launch a gravity bomb that detonates after 1 second and draws enemy Heroes toward the center for 2.5 seconds.
  • Expulsion Zone (R)
    • Launch a gravity bomb that deals light damage and creates an expulsion zone for 3.5 seconds. Enemies who enter the affected area are knocked back and have their Movement Speed reduced by 50% for 1 second.

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New Battleground: Warhead Junction

Once a testing facility for nuclear weapons, Warhead Junction has since fallen into ruin. However, the site's abandonment hasn't stopped its glitchy adjutant from continuing to produce and hand out nuclear weapons. Join the arms race of Warhead Junction, build up your stockpile, and rain hell on your enemies!

Warhead Deployment

  • Multiple Warheads will spawn periodically across the battleground.

Collect Warheads

  • Pick up a Warhead to activate your Nuke. Use it or you will drop it when you die!

Call Down the Thunder

  • Launch Nukes to devastate the enemy team's fortifications.

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Art

Heroes, Abilities, and Talents

  • Chen and Nazeebo have received updated visual effects to coincide with their Talent reworks. 

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Performance

General

  • Additional improvements have been made to Heroes of the Storm’s overall framerate, affecting all game modes and Battlegrounds.

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Shop

Bundles

  • New Bundles
    • Thunder Guard Zarya Bundle – Available until October 11, 2016.
    • Raider Rexxar Bundle – Available until October 11, 2016.
    • Undying Legends Bundle – Available until October 18, 2016.
    • Ultimate Undying Legends Bundle – Available until October 18, 2016.

New Hero

  • Zarya has been added to the in-game Shop.

Mounts

  • Returning Mounts
    • Judgement Charger
  • Removed Mounts
    • Lunar Dragon
    • Spectre Phantom
    • Dire Wolf

Skins

  • Raider Rexxar
  • Thunder Guard Zarya
  • Master Zarya

Price Changes

  • Diablo’s prices have been reduced to $3.49 USD and 2,000 Gold.
  • Muradin’s prices have been increased to $6.49 USD and 4,000 Gold.

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Sound

General

  • The second Tutorial mission has received updated sound effects to coincide with its overhaul.

Heroes, Abilities, and Talents

  • Chen has received updated sound effects for his Elusive Brawler Talent and Storm, Earth, Fire Heroic Ability.
  • The Seasoned Marksman Talent has received a new sound effect heard when the active ability awarded by the quest is used.

User Interface

  • Voiceover will now play on the MVP and Commendation screen when a player receives enough votes to reach Epic or Legendary status.

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    Battlegrounds

    Braxis Holdout

    • All Zerg Units have received the following changes:
      • Early-game damage scaling significantly reduced
      • Mid-game damage scaling slightly reduced
      • Late-game damage scaling moderately increased
    • Banelings
      • Base damage increased by 20%
    • Hydralisks
      • Base damage increased by 25%
    • Guardians
      • Base damage increased by roughly 17%
    • Ultralisks
      • Base damage increased by 20%
    Developer Comments: We’ve noticed a few more one-sided games than we’d like on Braxis Holdout. The battleground plays faster by design, but we think that a few changes to reduce the early game effectiveness of the zerg will put the balance closer to what we’d like after the battleground goes live.

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    Heroes

    Assassin Specialist Support Warrior
    Alarak Nazeebo Kharazim Anub'arak
    Chromie   Li Li Chen
    Gul'dan   Malfurion E.T.C.
    Li-Ming      
    The Butcher      
    Tychus      
    Valla      

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     Assassin

    Alarak

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    Abilities

    • Discord Strike (Q)
      • Mana cost reduced from 60 to 55
    • Lightning Surge (E)
      • Mana cost reduced from 40 to 30
      • Damage increased from 90 to 100
      • Width increased by 50%
    • Counter-Strike (R)
      • Damage increased from 250 to 275
      • Added Functionality:
        • Now grants Alarak Unstoppable for its duration

    Talents

    • Level 1
      • Power Conduit (E)
        • Mana cost reduction decreased from 15 to 10
      • Wide Lightning (E)
        • Removed
    • Level 7
      • Thunderstruck (E)
        • Slow duration increased from 1.5 to 2 seconds
    • Level 13
      • Hindered Motion (W)
        • Slow duration increased from 1.5 to 2 seconds
    Developer Comments: While we expected Alarak’s win rate to be a bit on the lower side due to how difficult his kit can be to fully execute, we felt that he could use some buffs to make him feel better to play. Across the board Lightning Surge is slightly under-performing, so we’re upping the power of the base ability and its related talents. We hope that this will properly reward Alarak players who take Lightning Surge related talents, particularly those who master the gameplay of clotheslining enemies with the Lightning. When we first designed Counter-Strike, we felt that crowd control was an appropriate counter to the ability since it was so powerful on paper and on a reasonably low cooldown. Since his release, we have seen that Counter-Strike is simply not as reliable as we had predicted since Alarak has 3 potential ways to fail to get value (enemies can fail to damage him, they can dodge the returning skill shot, or they can crowd control him out of his channel). We’ve decided to grant him Unstoppable for its duration to make it more reliable, and we are increasing its damage to further separate it from Deadly Charge.

    Chromie

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    Stats

    • Base maximum Health increased from 1260 to 1323
    • Health regen increased from 2.63 to 2.76

    Abilities

    • Sand Blast (Q)
      • Range increased by 6%
    • Dragon's Breath (W)
      • Range increased by 6%
    • Temporal Loop (R)
      • Range decreased by 8%

    Talents

    • Level 13
      • Reaching Through Time (Passive)
        • Range bonus decreased from 25 to 15%
    Developer Comments: Reaching Through Time had a dominating pick rate, for good reason. We’re taking a little bit of that range from the Talent and adding it baseline. While we’re at it, we’re reducing the range on Temporal Loop slightly to require Chromie to put herself more at risk. Temporal Loop isn’t overpowered per se, but the majority of the counterplay required specific Heroes (Medivh, Auriel, Uther) or Cleanse. We’re also buffing her Health so that the sum total of all these changes will result in an improvement to her winrate, since she is slightly less powerful than what we’d like to see.

    Gul'dan

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    Abilities

    • Life Tap (Trait)
      • Base self-inflicted damage decreased from 234 to 222
    • Fel Flame (Q)
      • Increased base size by 5%
    • Drain Life (W)
      • Base healing increased from 43 to 47
    • Corruption (E)
      • Cooldown reduced from 16 to 14 seconds
      • Mana cost reduced from 90 to 80

    Talents

    • Level 1
      • Echoed Corruption (E)
        • Quest completion requirement increased from 35 to 40 Heroes hit by Corruption
    • Level 4
      • Health Funnel (W)
        • Cooldown reduction gained when an enemy dies under the effects of Drain Life changed from 7 seconds to a full cooldown reset
    Developer Comments: Gul’dan’s slightly underperforming compared to other assassins, so we’re giving him some throughput buffs as well as buffing his Fel Flame ability. We know that the Echoed Corruption change may not be positively received as it is a slight nerf, but we believe it is better for the health of his talent tier and for him overall. The intent of this talent was for it to be a relatively large power spike but for it to come very late into the game. Currently it’s still being unlocked earlier than we would like, and it has a slightly higher win rate compared to other talents on the tier. We wanted to buff Corruption by lowering its cooldown, so we felt that it was appropriate to slightly increase its quest completion time to help balance it out.

    Li-Ming

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    Abilities

    • Arcane Orb (W)
      • Beginning size reduced by roughly 33%
      • Maximum size reduced by roughly 33%
      • Explosion radius reduced by roughly 15%

    Talents

    • Level 4
      • Triumvirate (W)
        • Now reduces the cooldown of Arcane Orb by 50%, instead of 5 seconds
        • Travel distance required reduced from 65 to 50%
    • Level 7
      • Zei's Vengeance (W)
        • Added functionality:
          • Now also reduces the cooldown of Arcane Orb by 25%
    Developer Comments:  Arcane Orb and the Talents affecting it have been slightly underperforming over the past couple months. We are also unhappy with the unpredictably large explosion radius that occurs at close range detonations. To address these concerns, we have made some base size adjustments to the Orb missile while also buffing Zei’s Vengeance to help round out the full build. While the size changes definitely look like a nerf on paper, in actual testing we felt like they gave players tighter control with a lot less early-detonations on unintended targets.

    The Butcher

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    Abilities

    • Furnace Blast (R)
      • Cooldown reduced from 80 to 60 seconds

    Tychus

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    Stats

    • Base Maximum Health increased from 1836 to 1925
    • Base Health Regeneration increased from 3.8 to 4

    Abilities

    • Commandeer Odin (R)
      • Added Functionality:
        • Now grants Tychus Resistant for the duration of Commandeer Odin, reducing damage taken by 25%

    Talents

    • Level 1
      • Press the Advantage (E)
        • Basic Attack Range bonus increased from 25 to 35%
      • Combat Tactician (E)
        • Cooldown reduction increased from .75 to .8 seconds per Basic Attack.
      • Shrug It Off (E)
        • Removed
    Developer Comments: After the change to Relentless Soldier in a previous patch, Tychus had 2 different ways to gain Resistant before level 10. While we like that Tychus is a “tanky Assassin”, we felt that him having more ways to mitigate damage than some melee Assassins to be too much. We decided to remove Shrug It Off because it felt misplaced on a tier that was primarily about Utility and Mobility. To compensate for the loss of Shrug It Off, we’ve decided to buff his baseline Health and Regeneration and the other Talent options at level 1. For players that really want to embrace the “tanky Assassin” role of Tychus, we’ve added Resistant to Odin so that you can truly feel like a scary mech of destruction while it is up.

     

    Valla

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    Abilities

    • Vault (E)
      • Damage bonus per stack of Hatred increased from 5 to 6%
    • Hungering Arrow (Q)
      • Increased base damage from 140 to 151
      • Bounce damage increased from 80 to 86
    • Rain of Vengeance (R)
      • Cooldown decreased from 60 to 50 seconds per charge

    Talents

    • Level 1
      • Monster Hunter (Q)
        • Mana refund amount increased from 30 to 40
        • Minion and Mercenary bonus damage increased from 100 to 150%
    • Level 4
      • Puncturing Arrow (Q)
        • Quest reward bonus damage increased from 50 to 75
    • Level 7
      • Death Dealer (E)
        • Bonus damage per Hatred stack increased from 10 to 12%
    Developer Comments:  We’re seeing a lot of success with Multi-Shot Valla’s builds, but the Basic Attack and Hungering Arrow focused Valla’s aren’t keeping pace. We really want to reward players for keeping their Hatred at high stacks and landing those Puncturing Arrows on their intended targets.

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    Specialist

    Nazeebo

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    Abilities

    • Corpse Spiders (Q)
      • Spiders will now fixate on whatever enemies are hit with the jar, dividing their focus among all available targets. Prefers Heroic targets.
      • Spiders will now only spawn if you hit an enemy with the jar
      • Reduced the travel speed of the jar, mostly at close range
      • Increased the impact radius by 50%
      • Spiders now move significantly faster toward their target 
      • Impact damage reduced from 91 to 50
      • Spider Attack's damage increased from 13 to 35 per attack
      • Mana cost reduced from 60 to 50
    • Zombie Wall (W)
      • Zombie Health increased from 183 to 225 
    • Plague of Toads (E)
      • Number of Toads spawned reduced from 5 to 3
      • Now has 2 charges
      • Damage changed from 87 damage on impact to 126 over 6 seconds
        • Multiple instances of this damage effect can affect the same enemy
      • Cooldown reduced from 10 to 8 seconds
      • Mana cost reduced from 55 to 30
    • Voodoo Ritual (Trait)
      • Damage over time effect is now only applied to non-Heroes
      • Duration increased from 4 to 6 seconds
      • Killing an enemy affected by Voodoo Ritual no longer restores Health and Mana
      • New Functionality:
        • You now permanently gain 4 Maximum Health and 1 Maximum Mana if an enemy Minion dies while affected by Voodoo Ritual
    • Gargantuan (R)
      • Gargantuan now stays near the area where cast and attempts to attack any enemies that come nearby. Prefers Heroic targets.
      • Initial impact damage reduced from 151 to 100
      • Stomp damage increased from 219 to 240
      • Attack range increased by 50%
      • Cooldown increased from 60 to 70 seconds

    Talents

    • Level 1
      • Demolitionist (Passive)
        • Removed
      • Death Ritual (Trait)
        • Removed
      • Bribe (Active)
        • Removed
      • Blood Ritual (Trait)
        • Moved to level 4
        • New Functionality:
          • If an enemy dies while affected by Voodoo Ritual, heal for 2% of your Maximum Health and Mana.
      • New Talent: Widowmakers (Q)
        • Quest: After hitting Heroes 100 times with Corpse Spider attacks, their damage is increased by 30%.
      • New Talent: Pandemic (E)
        • Quest: After hitting 40 Heroes with Plague of Toads, it spawns 2 additional toads.
    • Level 4
      • Spider Cluster (Q)
        • Removed
      • Gathering Power (Passive)
        • Removed
      • Mercenary Lord (Passive)
        • Removed
      • Envenom (Active)
        • Removed
      • Promote (Active)
        • Removed
      • New Talent: Hexed Crawlers (Q)
        • Corpse Spiders restore 0.75% of your maximum Health and Mana each time they attack an enemy Hero.
      • New Talent: Big Voodoo (Trait)
        • Increases the Health and Mana bonuses from Voodoo Ritual by 100%.
    • Level 7
      • Gidbinn (Passive)
        • Removed
      • Fresh Corpses (W)
        • Removed
      • New Talent: Spirit of Arachyr (Q)
        • If your jar of Corpse Spiders hits only 1 enemy, spawn an additional spider.
    • Level 13
      • Dead Rush (W)
        • Moved to level 7
        • Increased zombie damage bonus from 50 to 100%.
      • Toads of Hugeness (E)
        • Moved to level 7
        • Bonus reduced from 20 to 15% per hop, and now caps at 60% bonus.
      • Thing of the Deep (Passive)
        • Moved to level 1
        • Range bonus reduced from 25 to 20%
      • New Talent: Guardian Toads (E)
        • If your Plague of Toads explodes on an enemy Hero gain Resistant for 2 seconds, reducing damage taken by 25%
      • New Talent: Superstition (Passive)
        • You take 50% less damage from Abilities, but 30% more damage from Basic Attacks
    • Level 16
      • Specialized Toxin (Trait)
        • Removed
      • Leaping Spiders (Q)
        • Removed
      • Infested Toads (E)
        • Removed
      • Hardened Focus (Passive)
        • Removed
      • New Talent: Spider Colony (Q)
        • Corpse Spiders recharges twice as fast while you are above 850 (+4% per level) Health.
      • New Talent: Ring of Poison (W)
        • Increases the duration of Wall of Zombies by 1 second, and now deals 375 damage over 4 seconds.  Damage starts small and increases over the duration.
      • New Talent: Soul Harvest (Active)
        • Activate to gain 3% Ability Power and maximum Health for every nearby enemy, up to 15%. Health and Ability Power bonuses last 15 seconds. 15 second cooldown.
    • Level 20
      • Humongoid (R)
        • No longer makes the Gargantuan last indefinitely or increases its Basic Attack damage to non-Heroic enemies
        • New Functionality:
          • Reduces the cooldown of Gargantuan by 50 seconds, and the Mana cost by 50%
      • Bolt of the Storm (Active)
        • Removed
      • New Talent: Vile Infection (Trait)
        • Quest:  After reaching 150 stacks of Voodoo Ritual, increase Voodoo Ritual's damage by 200% and cause it to also apply to Heroes.
    Developer Comments:  Nazeebo is one of the oldest Heroes in the game, and his Talent tree was in dire need of an upgrade. The goal of the revamp was to increase the reward of mastering the Hero’s Abilities, maintain his identity as a zone control and damage over time character, embrace the fun mini-game that was Death Ritual, and provide interesting synergies between Abilities and Talents. We wanted to be sure to reinforce the designed weaknesses of the Hero that are lack of burst and lack of mobility, while still making him viable in the current metagame of Heroes of the Storm. Overall, a lot of his old Talents had to be revamped or replaced, but we find that he still feels a lot like the old Nazeebo, just more interesting!
    Level (Tier)   Nazeebo Talents    
    1 (1) (!) Widowmakers (Q) (!) Pandemic (E) Thing of the Deep (Passive)
    4 (2) Hexed Crawlers (Q) Big Voodoo (Trait) Blood Ritual (Trait)
    7 (3) Spirit of Arachyr (Q) Dead Rush (W) Toads of Hugeness (E)
    10 (4) Gargantuan (R) Ravenous Spirit (R)
    13 (5) Guardian Toads (E) Superstition (Passive) Ice Block (Active)
    16 (6) Spider Colony (Q) Ring of Poison (W) Soul Harvest (Active)
    20 (7) Humongoid (R) Annihilating Spirit (R) Fury of the Storm (Passive) (!) Vile Infection (Trait))

     

    divider_sml.png

    • (!) indicates a Questing Talent.
    • Italic text indicates a NEW Talent.
    • Bold text indicates a MOVED Talent.

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     Support

    Kharazim

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    Talents

    • Level 13
      • Sixth Sense (Passive)
        • Block amount increased from 50 to 75% after being stunned or rooted.

    Li Li

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    Talents

    • Level 16
      • Shake It Off (Passive)
        • No longer has a cooldown
        • Resistant amount increased from 25 to 50%
        • Resistant duration increased from 3 to 4 seconds

    Malfurion

    Divider_Hero_Malfurion_Crop.png

    Abilities

    • Regrowth (Q)
      • Cooldown reduced from 7 to 5 seconds
      • Mana cost reduced from 60 to 35
      • Duration increased from 10 to 15 seconds
      • Periodic heal reduced from 75 to 60
    • Entangling Roots (E)
      • Increased range by roughly 12%
      • Delay before initial root reduced from .5 seconds to .25 seconds
    • Innervate (Trait)
      • Added Functionality:
        • Now causes the target’s Basic Abilities to cooldown 50% faster for the duration of Innervate 

    Talents

    • Level 1
      • Harmony (Q)
        • Removed
    • Level 4
      • Rampant Growth (Q)
        • Healing bonus reduced from 50 to 40%
    • Level 7
      • Enduring Growth (Q)
        • Removed
    Developer Comments:  While we realize that Malfurion’s talent tree could use some work, and we want to do a deeper dive in the future, we wanted to give him a better niche among our other Support heroes in the meantime. His throughput healing should be higher, and a bigger part of his gameplay should now be rolling his heal-over-time effects among multiple allies to keep them alive. He now also has the unique ability to give allies cooldown reduction in addition to Mana, which should give him a new reason to be considered being added to a team. We’ve also buffed the initial root search for his Entangling Roots, which will enable him to more reliably root enemy Heroes instead of relying on his teammates to secure crowd control.

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     Warrior

    Anub'arak

    Divider_Hero_AnubArak_Crop.png

    Stats

    • Base maximum Health increased from 1926 to 2120
    • Health regen increased from 4.0 to 4.4

    Chen

    Divider_Hero_Chen_Crop.png

    Abilities

    • Storm, Earth, Fire (R)
      • New Functionality:
        • If all 3 Spirits die, Chen is killed
        • Spirit Health increased from 50 to 75% of Chen’s maximum Health
        • Each Spirit grants Chen a special ability:
          • Storm (Q): Increases the Movement Speed of your Spirits by 50% for 5 seconds
          • Earth (W): Fire and Earth Spirits leap at the target, slowing enemies in a large area by 70% for 1.5 seconds
          • Fire (E): Increase the Basic Attack speed of your Spirits by 100% for 5 seconds

     

    Talents

    • Level 1
      • Regeneration Master (Passive)
        • Removed
      • Keg Toss (W)
        • Moved to Level 4
        • New Functionality:
          • Quest: Hitting a Hero with Keg Smash increases its damage by 3, up to a maximum of 60.
          • Reward: After gaining 60 bonus damage, Keg Toss’s range is increased by 125% and gains a second charge.
      • Grounding Brew (Trait)
        • Ability damage reduction amount increased from 25 to 30%
      • Consuming Flame (E)
        • Removed
      • New Talent: Accumulating Flame (E)
        • Quest: Setting a Hero on Fire increases the damage over time of Breath of Fire by 2%, up to a max of 60%.
        • Reward: After gaining 60% bonus damage, Breath of Fire grants 1 second of Resistant per Hero set on fire, reducing damage taken by 25%
      • New Talent: Freshest Ingredients (Trait)
        • Quest: Gathering a Regen Globe increases Health Regeneration by 1 per second, up to a maximum of 30.
        • Reward: After gaining 30 bonus Health Regeneration, 50% of Shields gained from Fortifying Brew are retained indefinitely after drinking.
      • New Talent: Elusive Brawler (Active)
        • Activate to avoid all enemy Basic Attacks for 2 seconds. Basic Attacks reduce the cooldown of Elusive Brawler by 3 seconds. 20 second cooldown.
    • Level 4
      • Swift Reflexes (Passive)
        • Removed
      • Deadly Strike (Q)
        • New Functionality:
          • Flying Kick now deals 100% more damage if Chen has Fortifying Brew shields.
      • Amplified Healing (Passive)
        • Removed
      • Deep Breath (E)
        • Removed
    • Level 7
      • Full Keg (W)
        • Removed
      • Combat Stance (Trait)
        • Removed
      • Ring of Fire (E)
        • Moved to Level 4
        • Periodic damage increased from 30 to 50
        • Duration reduced from 5 to 3 seconds
      • New Talent: Refreshing Elixir (Passive)
        • All regeneration and healing effects are increased by 20%. This bonus is increased to 60% while channeling Fortifying Brew.
    • Level 13
      • Brew Strike (Q)
        • Removed
      • Enough to Share (Trait)
        • Moved to Level 16
      • Relentless (Passive)
        • Removed
      • New Talent: Withering Flames (E)
        • Setting an enemy Hero on fire reduces their Ability Power by 25% for 3 seconds.
    • Level 16
      • Bottomless Mug (Trait)
        • Removed
      • Bolder Flavor (Trait)
        • Moved to Level 7
        • New Functionality:
          • Grants 50% of your full Shield instantly when you use Fortifying Brew, and causes Shields to persist for 1 second after drinking.
      • Pressure Point (Q)
        • Moved to Level 13
        • New Functionality:
          • Flying Kick slows enemy Movement Speed by 40% for 1 second. This effect is doubled if the target is affected by Keg Smash.
      • Combination Attack (Q)
        • Removed
      • New Talent: Flying Leap (Q)
        • Increases the range of Flying Kick by 20%
      • New Talent: Another Round (W)
        • After hitting an enemy Hero with Keg Smash, the cooldown of the next Basic Ability you cast will be reduced by 3 seconds.
        • Increases the radius of Keg Smash by 50%
    • Level 20
      • Untapped Potential (R)
        • New Functionality:
          • Increases Movement Speed of Wandering Keg by 25%
          • Chen gains 50% damage reduction while in Wandering Keg
      • Elemental Conduit (R)
        • New Functionality:
          • Your Sprits now have 100% of Chen’s Maximum Health.
          • Storm (Q): Also grants Unstoppable to your Spirits for the duration of the Movement Speed boost
          • Earth (W): Also reduces the cooldown of Leap by 3 seconds
          • Fire (E): No longer an Active ability. Spirits now attack 100% faster while the Fire Spirit is alive
      • Hardened Shield (Active)
        • Removed
      • Bolt of the Storm (Active)
        • Removed
      • New Talent: Purifying Brew (Trait)
        • Passively reduce the duration of the next Stun or Silence effect by 75% and reset the cooldown of Fortifying Brew. This can only happen once every 10 seconds.
      • New Talent: Stormstout Secret Recipe (Passive)
        • Heal for 1.5% of your Maximum Health every time your Basic Abilities hit an enemy Hero.
    Developer Comments:  We know how much passion our players have for Chen and spent months upgrading his Talent Tree to our newest philosophies. To give you an idea of what we were looking to improve, here were a couple of our goals with this update: Chen should be able to be a solo-tank for your team and not be afraid to constantly soak enemy skill-shots. Chen should be a constant threat to the enemy’s backline damage dealers. Chen should deal low amounts of burst damage while continually applying sustained damage at pointed targets. Chen should be extremely resilient in the absence of enemy stuns. As always, we are listening to your feedback and appreciate everyone taking the time to send it to us. Enjoy the new Talent Tree, and as Chen has said many times before- “It is important to master the Brew and not let it master you!”
    Level (Tier)   Chen Talents    
    1 (1) (!) Accumulating Flame (Q) Grounding Brew (Trait) (!) Freshest Ingredients (Trait) Elusive Brawler (Active)
    4 (2) Deadly Strike (Q) (!) Keg Toss (W) Ring of Fire (E)
    7 (3) Brewmaster's Balance (Trait) Bolder Flavor (Trait) Refreshing Elixir (Passive)
    10 (4) Wandering Keg (R) Storm, Earth, Fire (R)
    13 (5) Pressure Point (Q) A Touch of Honey (W) Withering Flames (E)
    16 (6) Flying Leap (Q) Another Round (W) Enough to Share (Trait)
    20 (7) Untapped Potential (R) Elemental Conduit (R) Purifying Brew (Trait) Stormstout Secret Recipe (Passive)

     

    divider_sml.png

    • (!) indicates a Questing Talent.
    • Italic text indicates a NEW Talent.
    • Bold text indicates a MOVED Talent.

    E.T.C.

    6L0DECUU5AUA1417483334095.png

    Abilities

    • Powerslide (Q)
      • Range increased by 25%
    • Rockstar (Trait)
      • Radius increased by 10%

    Talents

    • Level 1
      • Rolling Like a Stone (Q)
        • Removed
      • Block (Passive)
        • Removed
      • Prog Rock (E)
        • New Functionality:
          • Quest: Gathering a Regeneration Globe permanently increases the healing per second of Guitar Solo by 5, up to a maximum of 100. 
          • Reward: After reaching 100 increased healing, Guitar Solo also heals nearby allied Heroes for 53 Health every second while active.
      • Pwn Shop Guitar (E)
        • Moved to Level 16
        • Renamed to Aggressive Shredding
        • New Functionality:
          • Basic Attacks reduce the cooldown of Guitar Solo by 1 second.
      • New Talent: Block Party (Trait)
        • Rockstar also grants Allies a stack of Block, reducing the damage from the next Basic Attack by 50% for 8 seconds.  Stacks up to 2 times.
    • Level 4
      • Double-Necked Guitar (Q)
        • Removed
      • Mic Check (W)
        • Moved to Level 13
        • Number of targets hit required to reduce Face Melt’s cooldown decreased from 3 to 2
      • Pinball Wizard (W)
        • Moved to Level 7
        • Bonus damage increased from 50 to 150%
      • New Talent: Crowd Surfer (Q)
        • Powerslide can now travel over walls and unpathable areas.
    • Level 7
      • Just Keep Rockin’ (E)
        • Removed
      • Guitar Hero (E)
        • Moved to Level 1
        • New Functionality:
          • While Guitar Solo is active, you heal for 30% of the damage dealt by Basic Attacks.  Also increases the Attack Speed bonus from Rockstar from 20% to 25%.
      • Loud Speakers (W)
        • Moved to Level 4
      • Follow Through (Passive)
        • Renamed to Hammer-on
        • New Functionality:
          • After using an Ability, your next 2 Basic Attacks deal 30% more damage.
    • Level 13
      • Groupies (E)
        • Removed
      • Spell Shield (Passive)
        • Removed
      • Show Stopper (Q)
        • Moved to Level 16
      • Face Smelt (W)
        • Slow amount reduced from 80 to 60%
    • Level 16
      • Speed Metal (Trait)
        • Moved to Level 4
        • Movement Speed bonus reduced from 20 to 10%
      • Echo Pedal (Passive)
        • Moved to Level 7
        • Damage decreased from 59 to 32. 
        • Added Functionality:
          • Now deals double damage vs. Minions and Mercenaries.
      • Encore (W)
        • Moved to Level 13
    Developer Comments:  We like E.T.C.’s core gameplay, but wanted to improve his talent diversity. Many E.T.C. players end up picking the same talents in most games, especially at Levels 1 and 4, due to the importance of buffing Powerslide. We’ve streamlined that power, and have given him more options to play up the bard aspect of his kit, which should make him more of a team player.
    Level (Tier)     E.T.C. Talents    
    1 (1) Guitar Hero (E) (!) Prog Rock (E) Block Party (Trait)
    4 (2) Crowd Surfer (Q) Loud Speakers (W) Speed Metal (Trait)
    7 (3) Pinball Wizard (W) Echo Pedal (Passive) Hammer-on (Passive)
    10 (4) Mosh Pit (R) Stage Dive (R)
    13 (5) Mic Check (W) Encore (W) Face Smelt (W)
    16 (6) Show Stopper (Q) Aggressive Shredding (E) Imposing Presence (Active)
    20 (7) Tour Bus (R) Crowd Pleaser (R) Death Metal (Passive) Storm Shield (Active) Bolt of the Storm (Active)

     

    divider_sml.png

    • (!) indicates a Questing Talent.
    • Italic text indicates a NEW Talent.
    • Bold text indicates a MOVED Talent.

    19RBT3IUQUYB1403137112368.png

    Bug Fixes

    General

    • Fixed an issue that prevented players from placing Healing Totems near destructible objects and unpathable terrain.

    Heroes, Abilities, and Talents

    • Abathur: Fixed an issue causing Abathur’s Ultimate Evolution clones to deal damage to nearby enemies on expiration without learning the Volatile Mutation talent.
    • Anub’arak: It is no longer possible to cast Cocoon on Heroic Vehicles, such as the Garden Terror or Dragon Knight.
    • Artanis: Fixed an issue that caused Artanis' Shield Overload trait to fail to override existing shields when triggered.
    • Auriel and Lunara: Fixed an issue causing Lunara’s camera to behave strangely after being resurrected by Auriel’s Resurrect.
    • Diablo: It is no longer possible to cast Overpower on Heroic Vehicles, such as the Garden Terror or Dragon Knight.
    • Nova: It is no longer possible for Nova to target Invulnerable Heroes with Triple Tap.

    User Interface

    • Greymane: Fixed an issue causing Greymane’s “Eager Wolf” talent to fail to display in the shop when viewing talents for Greymane’s Worgen form.
    • Illidan: Fixed an issue causing the tooltip for Illidan’s Friend or Foe talent to display incorrect data.
    (source)

     

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    So hyped for Chen. Loved playing him, then kinda left him for better Warriors. Now I'm hoping to just fit in Zarya/Chen into everything.

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    Most of these balance changes look pretty good.

    Hopefully the few support heroes modified help them significantly to further increase the amount of very useful support heroes.

    Additionally, I am really glad that Nazeebo (one of my favorite heroes), Chen and Gul'dan are all getting much needed buffs.

    Edited by Johnknight1

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    On 9/28/2016 at 5:29 PM, ghostdeini said:

    I'm honestly excited for the few tweaks to Gul'dan.  I really like the character but he was definitely under performing. 

    I honestly felt like the ult was a huge contributor to this, I dunno. When one of your ult choices is basically an undertuned RNG fest, something isn't right!

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        Blizzard (Source)
        What differentiates a highly skilled player on a given Hero isn’t always obvious, though.
        In a complex game such as Heroes of the storm, is it ever? The system is claimed to be “dynamic”, which means that, over time, it reevaluates how it defines skilled play for a given hero as it is fed new data. However, in practice, I just don’t think "skill" is something that can be reliably measured by in-game performance data alone. Nor should it be. Let us draw comparisons between Heroes of the Storm and chess, which has used a similar matchmaking system known as ELO for some decades now. In chess, what would you say matters most between the two following statements?
        Claiming multiple pieces without trading your own?
        or…
        Focusing on claiming key pieces during key moments?
        The answer is “it depends”. Although both tactics may lead to victory, the first style is opportunistic whereas the second is analytical. Unfortunately for the second player, their strategy would be much harder for a performance-based system to evaluate; how would it know what defines a key piece, let alone a key moment? The first approach is mathematical; one is better than zero and, generally, “free” trades correlate with winning, which is more or less why they are inexistant at a high level chess unless intentional.
        In chess, you aren’t rewarded for losing less, and the reason for this is that the underlying ELO system is robust and self-correcting; rating resets don’t occur every couple months, let alone twice in a week, and rating gains and losses are small. Of course, the ELO system isn’t beyond reproach, but I think it’s fair to say that players understand that long-term results are what matter, not individual game results. And, it doesn’t run the risk of overvaluing Queen taking Rook because of insufficient or misinterpreted data.

        Queen literally takes Rook during a Tribute fight. Siege damage is important to Zagara, says data.
        As you can tell probably tell by now, I’m very skeptical about how such a system is supposed to evaluate what differentiates a highly skilled player, period, regardless of what hero it is they’re playing. Here’s a concrete example of what I mean by that: Although I don’t consider myself to be a particularly strong mechanical player, I have always managed to maintain a rather high win/loss ratios, for a team game, back in my active days anyway. Why? I’d be lying if I didn’t say that many of these victories weren’t simply due to outdrafting opponents, clear non-confrontational shotcalling, encouraging teammates, defusing infighting, taking every match seriously, knowing when and why to engage, going over mistakes, and generally making powerful macro decisions. On top of being that one weird guy that says “can play anything*, prefer assassin or specialist, let’s try to ban x and pick y.” Doesn’t reading that first thing in any given lobby instill confidence in the rest of your teammates? I bet this translates into wins every once in a while, so why not do it?
        I tend to thrive on waveclear tanks with strong engaging power because they let me decide exactly when a minion wave needs to push or when an enemy hero needs to die despite low mechanical ceilings.

        And now you know how to ban me out.
        *…whereas I couldn’t outplay most of my opponents to save my life. I accept my fate as one of the worst Illidan players in existence, and I’m fine with it.

        I have nothing to add, your honor.
        The great irony here is that none of the aforementioned elements that I feel make me, and probably many other players, reasonably strong are – nor can be – taken into account by any automated system because they’re simply too subjective. Why exactly am I being punished for not mindlessly using my abilities on-cooldown and padding my numbers? We get it; dealing damage is important. But what about useful damage? How can that ever be taken into account by a machine? This might sound like an argument from incredulity but, as I see it, we have plenty of evidence to conclude that the system isn’t quite working as intended.
        Of course, within this system, winning is still what matters most, and by far. Fortunately for me, my skillset does tend to translate into wins. But obfuscating one’s point gains and losses behind questionable variables is going to, at best, confuse players, and at worst, breed harmful behaviour. These two consequences have already been observed.
        TL;DR:
        A solid performance-based matchmaking system can have positive effects on matchmaking by allowing players to find their appropriate MMR faster. However, what defines a good player in a complex, team-oriented game goes well beyond what any data collection system can collect, interpret, and use. In its current state, the performance-based matchmaking system is at best unnecessary and at worst obfuscating, and ultimately risks breeding harmful player behaviour.
        I’ll allow myself to end on a bit of wisdom: If you play to improve, you’ll never lose a game in your life. And the sooner you quit worrying about your rank, the sooner you’ll be able to focus on what really matters.