Jump to content
FORUMS
Sign in to follow this  
Oxygen

Hindsight 101: Belated Varian BlizzCon Hands-on & Discussion

Recommended Posts

WoW-Legion-Varian-Cinematic-980x500.jpg

Oxygen talks about his Varian experience at BlizzCon - a month late! Did the first Multiclass Hero live up to his (non) expectations?

 

If you're familiar with my BlizzCon-related work, you might know that I generally produce a few article about my hands-on experience with the announced and upcoming heroes for Heroes of the Storm. And you may have noted that I hadn't published anything about Varian. Why? Blizzard played a naughty joke on me by announcing that Varian would also be available for all to play on the PTR - a mere two days after BlizzCon - making my so-called experience rather moot. I refuse to see my work go to waste. Given that I made some rather bold assumptions in this article, I'd like to play a game of hindsight 20/20 or, "was Oxy wrong, and how wrong was he?", if you will.

Quote

Intro and Design

Varian is one of the two Heroes announced at BlizzCon 2016. He represents the World of Warcraft Warrior class in Heroes of the Storm, just as the Hunter is represented by Rexxar, the Mage by Jaina and Kael'thas, the Warlock by Gul'dan, and so on. Accordingly, he is labeled as a Warrior. However, he also happens to be the first true ''hybrid'' Hero to be brought into the game, being able to be played as tank, bruiser, or Assassin. This is defined by his Heroic ability choices, which offer significant passive boosts to his health, attack damage, or attack speed, respectively, at the cost of other stats.

In fact, this ability to specialise as such is the Hero's main defining point. Although his learning curve is not particularly steep due to the simplicity of his kit, Varian's true depth comes from his talents. Each tier has you make decisions that broadly impact the way you will play the Hero following these decisions. Varian puts your ability to assess game flow, proper counter-picking, and team needs to the test.

Right off, I'm not sure why I said Varian was labeled as a Warrior when he's rather clearly labeled as Multiclass. Regardless of this minor mistake, I seem to have overestimated just how much "depth" Varian's talents actually have. Most players nowadays have a pretty clear idea of what they'll be doing the second they pick Varian, and hotslogs confirms that there isn't all that much variety in his builds. 

Quote

Lion's Fang (Q) is a simple projectile that travels in a line, piercing enemies and dealing some damage on top of reducing the movement speed of struck foes. Lion's Fang is a pretty (disappointingly) literal copy-paste of Rexxar's Birdy toss. The related quest significantly improves its damage and doubles the slowing effect and adding a bit of duration to it, making it quite a bit more zingy. You can't really go wrong with slowing stuff in a line, but beyond this, the ability is not particularly interesting. It is pretty important to land it after Charge so that the slow may improve your basic attack uptime. Although the ability can be used to help you with waveclearing, its damage is so low that I would probably not leave Varian in any lane for an extended period of time.

Although there isn't much to add to this factual bit, I think it is pretty important to mention that Varian indeed turned out to be one of the worst early game (and laning) hero to date. I'll touch on this a bit futher down.

Quote

Parry (W) reduces the damage of all incoming basic attacks by 100% for 0.75 seconds, and has two charges. This ability is very (very!) reminescent of Illidan's Evasion. At level 4, you can choose to make Parry reduce ALL damage taken by 100%, making it infinitely better. Since its duration is so short, you need some pretty good reflexes to make proper use of that one. As an interesting sidenote, it works against buildings and Mercenaries, notably, the Boss.

It should be noted that Parry was actually buffed significantly between BlizzCon and the PTR version of Varian. Although I was trying to give the ability some credit, using its 0.75 seconds duration to its fullest was rather... lacklustre at best.

Quote

Charge (E) sends you running at the enemy target of your choice, dealing a bit of damage and applying a potent but short snare. More or less like Kharazim's Dash, sans the ability to target allies, and with a much shorter range. A level 4 choice turns the snare into a 0.75 seconds stun and halves its otherwise pretty long cooldown, making it an excessively reliable interruption, soft engaging, and chasing tool. But not much else.

It is interesting to note that Charge was also changed between BlizzCon and the PTR, with a 33% increase to the snaring and stunning (assuming Warbringer) effects.

Quote

Heroic Strike (Trait) makes your first attack every 18 second deal a signficant amount of bonus damage. Following basic attacks reduce the cooldown of Heroic Strike by some 2 seconds. The animation is pretty cool, and the damage is definitely welcome. Heroic Strike allows Varian to deal a reasonable amount of burst damage following Charge, but is especially useful while clearing out Mercenary Camps. There's not much to that one; just make sure you don't waste your attack against irrelevant targets before actually engaging.

Taunt (R1) forces the targeted Hero to attack you for 1.25 seconds. Its range being essentially melee, I'd often follow a charge up with this so as to totally disable my target for 2 seconds. This talent also increases your life pool by a measly 50%, at the cost of reducing your attack speed by 25%. If you hadn't guessed, this is what you go to become a tank - or try to, anyway.

Colossus Smash (R2) causes you to dash to the target, slamming them for a decent amount of damage and a 3-second Vulnerability (25% damage taken increase from all sources) effect. It also passively increases your attack damage by 75%, at the cost of losing 10% of your health. This one lets Varian deal a scary amount of burst damage, as the increased basic attack damage is strongly reflected in Heroic Strike's own damage. All of which is then multiplied by the Vulnerability effect provided by Colossus Smash. Just make sure you have an exit strategy for this one, because you will be as frail as Varian gets.

Twin Blades of Fury (R3) does not have an activated ability attached to it, making it the first entirely passive Heroic ability. Instead, it provides a hefty 100% extra attack speed, at the cost of 25% attack damage. This is offset by the fact that the talent also increases your movement speed by 30% whenever you hit something, and causes your basic attacks to reduce the cooldown of Heroic Strike by 9 (!) seconds per hit. In other words, you'll be critically hitting your target every 3rd attack, not unlike Samuro. Combined with Second Wind, Twin Blades grants you some supreme self-sustainability. You just need to be able to attack your intended target a lot, which can be difficult. This talent also scales extremely well with the High king's Quest due to the interaction of flat damage and high attack speed.

Not much to say here, although I would like to underline some of my cynical bit regarding Taunt. A lot of players were excited about the prospect of completely disabling a chosen target for 2 (now 2.25) seconds. I was skeptical, as it meant giving up so much of everything else. Time would prove me right; Taunt Varian peaked at some 39% global win rate, and was extremely underwhelming (read: it lost) in the few competitive matches we did briefly see Varian come off the bench.

Quote

Gameplay and Impressions

Is simple complexity not an oxymoron? Varian's kit is dreadfully simple - I'd almost say cripplingly. I simply can't help but feel that it'll be very difficult for Varian players to stand out through the use of his abilities. There's only so much you can do with a targeted charge and line damage. This is also problematic from an animation standpoint; there isn't really anything ''big'' or impressive to build upon. The contrast between Varian and Ragnaros, from this standpoint, is staggering.

I think we can all agree on this point; Varian is definitely one of the more accessible heroes currently available, and his (updated) Taunt build is currently pretty effective for how simple it is to run. Don't get me wrong - simple characters are great for new players, but I personally felt - and still feel - that Varian is about as low as it is reasonable to be in terms of skill floor and ceiling.

Quote

Another big issue: Mana. Why does he have it? Warriors are the epitome of the not-mana archetype. It would feel good, too, to stack up Fury or rage or what-have-you in a Sonya-esque fashion, allowing you to unleash a barrage of Lion's Fangs, Parry a significant number of attacks, or repeatedly Charge at an intended kill target. During my several play sessions, I would often find myself running out of the stuff; this is definitely due to the level 7 talents providing large amounts of self-sustain. I'd always be full on health, and without a blue bar. That's annoying, and completely out of character.

After writing the article, I did have the chance to discuss (over dinner!) with an unnamed Blizzard hero design dev. He basically agreed with me, though underlined that taking mana away from so many characters might lead the game in a direction they weren't necessarily anticipating, or at least, crafting around. I boldly suggested taking Varian's mana to Samuro, because Blademasters were certainly known for building specifically so as to reduce mana usage. The whole discussion was rather interesting, to say the least.

Quote

My favourite thing about the character is without a doubt how significant every talent tiers feel. Varian probably has the best-designed talent tree in the game, and although I understand it is part of his design intent, I feel he should be used as a template for future releases. We all know that feeling when you get to pick up that build-defining talent, right? Varian gives you that feeling at every tier. The individual talent design is pretty clever, too - and it had to be. All of the talents work for all of the 3 ''specs'' you can go into.

I'm going to have to disagree with myself here; Ragnaros has an awesome talent tree because it allows you to aggressively adapt to your opponents. With Varian, I often feel like I'm struggling to see what I can get away with doing. And unfortunately, since the recent changes to the hero, that often ends up being "Just go Taunt". Yes, we do get to make big choices at level 4 and 16, but are they really interesting choices? I don't personally feel so. They're simply natural responses to what your opponents are playing, not depthful playstyle or game changers.

Quote

Role-wise, I feel like he fits the bruiser niche generally filled by The Butcher, Sonya, and Illidan. The issue, however, is that his Mercenary Camp clearing speed is abysmal in the early stages of the game due to your main damage source being gated behind Heroic abilities, and to sustain only coming online at level 7. His waveclear is even worse. He just feels terrible in the early stages of the game, but his design essentially makes it impossible to give him significant damage anywhere before 10, because any such boost would end up multiplying with the Heroic Assassin specs. It's a bit messy, to say the least, and would probably mean that he can never be a truly competitive pick. And even later on, when he can actually start doing things, he feels on the undertuned side. You'd wish he'd take some power away from Ragnaros to balance out the two somehow. In the end, however, I just don't feel like he's fun to play. Something is missing somewhere, but I can't quite put my finger on it.

A Meta Reject

In the last paragraph, I drew a comparion between The Butcher, Sonya, Illidan, and Varian in terms of in-game role. I cannot currently foresee Varian outperforming any of these Heroes. Undertuning might be a factor, but his early game deficiencies are simply too significant when he can't be roaming. The other Heroes mentioned here already see limited play in this meta despite being deemed balanced or even strong. I know what you're thinking, however: Oxy, does the ability to adapt not have any intrinsic value? To which I'll respond: Yes, it does. But you also sacrifice something for this. The most obvious problem is the early game (can I overstate this?), before you get to actually specialise, but once you do specialise, what then? Whether he's a tank or a damage dealer, Varian still does the same stuff: Charge in, most likely as a follow-up or to lock someone that's out of position, deal a bit of damage, either Taunt or Colossus Smash a value target, get a kill (or not)... but then, you're gated by really long cooldowns. His basic attacks are decent, thanks to Heroic Strike, but nothing to write home about. His survivability is mediocre, even in tank mode; having a tonne of health, as we've learned from Diablo, generally isn't even enough to be actually considered tanky. And if his numbers do see an increase, I feel he might just be frustrating to play against given how little counterplay room there is against him. Something fundamental might need to change about him if he is to see any serious viability. I guess that explains why he ends up... Legion spoiler alert...

 

dying.

Interestingly enough, Varian's Twin Blades of Fury build ended up being the build to beat by a large margin. In other words, I was wrong; it does happen to the best of us. Despite an abysmal early game (and regarding this, I was right!), Warbringer (which was shortly nerfed) and a ridiculous level of self-sustain (which was shortly nerfed) were enough to make up for said abysmal early game performance. I still stand behind my comments regarding the hero's lack of depth, which, I feel, will bore many players and unfortunately make one of the Warcraft franchise's most iconic characters rather unpopular should he ever become undertuned. It is worth noting that Varian, after this latest balance patch, is currently is in a pretty good state, with at least one of his build (Taunt) hovering around 53% win rate. His two other builds stand at a respectable 6-7% behind, generally overshadowed by other bruisers and melee assassins.

In the end, I certainly respect the design decisions made for Varian. His overly simple base ability kit, however, seem to have made it very difficult to create meaningful talents for him. Case in point: the majority of his talents don't even affect his basic abilities. Those that touch Parry are generally ignored due to their defensive or outright underwhelming nature, overshadowed by those that affect Charge, as those tend to synergise so well together. Lion's Maw (level 1 talent for Lion's Fang) sees a good amount of play however, if not just for the fact that it turns a meek Lion Fang into a reasonable ability, and is the only talent that actually affects it. Again, I'd like to underline the attempts at straying a bit away from the typical talent design, but Heroes has too much design space to see a hero that has 3 extremely simple abilities that more or less already exist on other heroes.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • Similar Content

    • By Stan
      The Heroes team will be hosting their next AMA and answer your questions on Thursday, July 16. Feel free to submit your questions here in the meantime. We will be back with a recap as usual.
      (Source)
      Greetings, Heroes!
      We’re going to host our next AMA on Thursday, July 16, 2020, PDT.
      The following Heroes developers will join the thread and answer your questions starting around 10:00 a.m. PDT (7:00 p.m. CET) until 12:00 p.m. PDT (9:00 p.m. CET).
      Adam Z. Jackson (/u/BlizzAZJackson) Andrew Kinabrew (/u/Blizz_KinaBREW) Brett Crawford (/u/Blizz_Daybringer) David P Warner (/u/Blizz_DWarner) Dorothy Sheng (/u/BlizzDorothy) Joshua Kofalt – (/u/BlizzKofalt) Kaeo Milker (/u/KaeoMilker) Kevin Gu (/u/BlizzKGu) Kyle Dates (/u/BlizzKyle) Sergey Morozov (/u/Blizz_SMorozov) Taylor Hankins (/u/Blizz_Hankins) When posting multiple AMA questions: Please make an effort to post one question per comment. This will make it easier for others to read through the thread, and will help the developers focus on one question at a time. However, please feel free to comment as many times as you'd like in order to get your questions posted.
      You can start posting your questions right now, and we'll see you on Thursday!
    • By Oxygen
      Our thirtieth Heroes of the Storm Meta Tier list for June 2020 is here!
      The latest meta tier list for June 2020 is here!
      Welcome to another Icy Veins's Meta Tier List for the June 3 patch. The goal of this list is to try and detail game's current metagame state. The prime goal of such lists is to inform players regarding popular and trending team composition drafting strategies (i.e. the drafting metagame).
      A new format, soon™
      First off: sorry for taking so long to update the list. We're in the final stage of a complete (and overdue) redesign of our tier lists. While I can't say for sure when we'll be showcasing it, it'll make both the updating process and your browsing experience that much better. In the meantime, I've restricted the class system to the system used in-game so as to reduce confusion. Stay tuned!
      Current ranked mode map rotation
      Current anomaly
      A Call For Help!. For more information about this Anomaly, simply refer to our Anomaly guide.
       

      S-tier Tank Bruiser Ranged Assassin Melee Assassin Healer Support E.T.C.   Cassia       Johanna   Mephisto        

      High-tier Tank Bruiser Ranged Assassin Melee Assassin Healer Support Blaze Sonya Falstad Ragnaros Deckard Abathur Garrosh Xul Fenix Samuro Lùcio   Mal'Ganis Yrel Greymane Thrall Rehgar       Jaina   Stukov       Kael'thas   Whitemane       Raynor           Sylvanas           Tassadar           Tracer        

      Mid-tier Tank Bruiser Ranged Assassin Melee Assassin Healer Support Arthas Artanis Azmodan Alarak Alexstrasza Zarya Anub'arak Chen Chromie Gazlowe Ana   Diablo Deathwing Hanzo Kerrigan Anduin   Muradin Dehaka Kel'Thuzad Maiev Auriel   Varian (Taunt) Leoric Li-Ming Qhira Brightwing     Malthael Lunara Zeratul Lt. Morales     Varian (Blades) Nazeebo   Malfurion     Varian (Smash) Orphea   Tyrande       Sgt. Hammer   Uther       Tychus           Valla           Zagara           Zul'jin        

      Low-tier Tank Bruiser Ranged Assassin Melee Assassin Healer Support Cho D.Va Gall Illidan Kharazim Medivh Stitches Rexxar Genji Murky   TLV Tyrael   Nova The Butcher         Probius Valeera    
    • By Stan
      Here is the official preview of Nexomania II. The event has gone live with the latest patch and will run until September 7.  
      The event revolves around three new Hero skins: Mal'gaucho Mal'Ganis, Gata de Batalla Li Li, and El Bandido Imperius. A new MC Tombstone Announcer has also been added together with a duck mount on steroids, and a rat mount.
      All chests obtained during Nexomania II have a high chance to contain event-themed loot (expect for Hero-specific chests).
      El Jefe Garrosh, El Chamuco Diablo, La Parca Lunara, and La Pantera Sonya (skins from last year's event) received new tints.
      (Source)
      When a swaggering wrestler in a tight pink singlet grabs a hot dog out of your hand en route to deliver a folding chair to the face of an unsuspecting sucker down in the ring—That’s Nexxxx-oooo-mania!
      For our latest wrestling-themed event, we’re taking Heroes of the Storm to the Intermultiversal Nexoweight Championship, where there are no rules and no mercy, just nonstop bicep-busting carnage. Gird your girdles for new Skins, Mounts, the bellowing Announcer MC Tombstone, special Quests, and more. All Loot Chests you obtain during Nexomania II have a higher chance to contain event-themed loot (except for Hero-specific chests). The action starts this week and won’t let up until our next major update!
      NEW SKINS: MEET YOUR CONTENDERS
      We have three new contenders entering the Intermultiversal Nexoweight Championship! These masters of mayhem have trained for years and their skills in the ring are only matched by the style they bring.

      Mal’gaucho Mal’ganis
      Mal’gaucho Mal’ganis is the favorite to win this competition. The Swingin’ Scourge of Stratholme tore a bloody path through his side of the bracket, burying opponents beneath a deluge of demonic blows.

      Gata de Batalla Li Li
      On the other side of the bracket, a mysterious upstart known only as La Gata de Batalla has emerged as a worthy challenger, defeating foes many times her size en route to the championship match.

      El Bandido Imperius
      And then there’s El Bandido Imperius, an outlaw who refuses to play by the rules. He might just make an unscheduled appearance in that final bout. . . .
      NEW ANNOUNCER: MC TOMBSTONE

      The arena is packed, and the Singularity-infused bellows of MC Tombstone himself reverberate through the loudspeaker. The final battle is about to begin. Whose side are you on? NEW: A CHAMPION’S QUEST
      The next time you launch Heroes of the Storm, you’ll be invited to choose a contender in the Intermultiversal Nexoweight Championship. Complete the corresponding Questline to unlock a barrage of themed rewards, but remember—you can only choose sides once!
      NEW MOUNTS, BUNDLES, TINTS, AND MORE!

      Ratón de Batalla
      La Gata de Batalla rides into the fray astride a massive, fearsome rodent with just the cutest widdle whiskers.

      Pumped Up Pato
      What do you say when an inflatable training dummy comes to life and threatens to knock out your friend? "Duck!"
      Bold New Tints
      Check out new Tints for Skins from the first Nexomania, including fresh looks for El Jefe Garrosh, El Chamuco Diablo, La Parca Lunara, and La Pantera Sonya!
      Bundles Galore
      While the fists, knees, and elbows are flying, we’re adding Nexomania II Bundles so you can pick up everything you want at a discounted price, alongside new Sprays, Emojis, and Portraits!
      AAARRREE YOUUUU READDYYY?
      The action starts this week and will continue in pulse-pounding fashion until our next major update. Get in there and fling some swings!
    • By Stan
      Game Designer David Warner breaks down what went into bringing Mei into the Nexus.
      The devs knew that a direct translation of Mei's kit from Overwatch would not work for Heroes of the Storm, because being able to attack while moving is a big advantage. Pair that with CC effects and you would have the most frustrating Hero of all time. As a result, they decided to port her over as a Tank/Bruiser despite her damage-oriented role in Overwatch. They had to carry over Blizzard (W) to Heroes, because the ability was so iconic in Overwatch. Mei went live earlier today. Check out the official patch notes for more details.  
      (Source)
      “Our world is worth fighting for.” – Dr. Mei-Ling Zhou 

      Despite her sunny demeanor, Dr. Mei-Ling Zhou has always had a knack for manipulating the colder elements to aid in her fight against the enemies of Overwatch. Now, utilizing the latest in temperature-dropping technologies, Mei has stepped out of the lab and into the Nexus to give her opponents a thorough thermal thrashing. 
      Ability Breakdown: 
      Thanks to the disruptive, protective, and surprisingly restorative properties of Mei’s icy engineering, this bone-chilling bruiser can get in the opponent’s face with her Endothermic Blaster, disrupt and devastate teamfights, then slide out of the skirmish unscathed. 
      Basic Abilities
      (D) - CRYO-FREEZE
      Encase yourself in ice for 3 seconds, gaining a rapidly decaying Shield that absorbs damage. While active, this Shield grants Unstoppable and restores up to 35% maximum Health.
      (Q) - SNOW BLIND
      Throw a snowball that hits all enemies in an area. Enemies hit take damage, are Slowed by 35%, and are Blinded for 1.5 seconds.
      (W) - BLIZZARD
      Command Snowball to create a blizzard at the target location for 2 seconds. Enemies within the blizzard take damage every 0.25 seconds and are Slowed by 7%, stacking up to 35%. When the blizzard ends, enemies within its area take additional damage and are stunned for 1.25 seconds.
      (E) - ICING
      Slide quickly in the targeted direction. When this effect ends, enemies near Mei are knocked back, take damage, and are Slowed by 80%, rapidly decaying over 1.5 seconds.
      Heroic Abilities
      (R) - AVALANCHE After 0.5 seconds, roll a massive snowball that consumes enemy Heroes in its path. At the end of its path, the snowball crumbles, releasing the consumed Heroes, dealing damage and stunning them for 0.5 seconds per Hero consumed.
      (R) - ICE WALL After a 0.75 second delay, create an impassable wall that traps enemy Heroes hit for 2.5 seconds. When the wall expires, trapped Heroes are slowed by 75%, decaying over 3 seconds.
      Making Mei: 
      Join Game Designer David Warner as he briefly breaks down what went into bringing one of Overwatch’s most polarizing agents into the Nexus: 
      Defining Mei’s playstyle: 
      Translating Mei from Overwatch to Heroes of the Storm: 
      Friends and Foes: 
      Works Well With:
      Burst Mages
      Mei’s ability to slow and disable enemies from long range makes it easier for fragile high-damage mages, such as Tassadar and Kael’thas, to land their big abilities. Additionally, Mei’s disruption effects can keep her fragile backline safe from would-be divers. Disabling Heroes
      Anyone with area crowd control effects, such as Malfurion, Imperius, or Junkrat, can easily combo their disables with Mei’s Blizzard and Icing, potentially shutting down whole teams for long periods of time. Jimmy
      Our favorite Renegade Commander, Jimmy Raynor, loves having Mei around for near constant uptime on his Ace in the Hole talent. Struggles Against: 
      Disabling Effects
      Outside of Cryo-Freeze, Mei lacks any way to avoid disabling effects, so she is susceptible to being locked down and interrupted by other tank and bruiser Heroes like Muradin or Diablo. Solo Engagements
      Because of her low damage output, Heroes with smaller health pools don’t have to avoid confronting Mei as they might for some other tanks. Mei is highly dependent on her allies for dishing out damage and serving up killing blows. Sustained Damage
      Mei lacks sustained healing and damage reduction, so damage dealers can soften her up between teamfights with consistent poke damage. Mei is taking the Nexus by storm (blizzard, of course) with today’s patch. We can’t wait to see what you do with this crystalizing climatologist! 

    • By Stan
      Mei has joined the Nexus! Check out our build guide to get started!  The latest patch for the game comes with a new Nexus Anomaly, Nexomania II, Mal'Ganis rework, and more.
      Patch Highlights
      Mei has entered the Nexus. Mal'Ganis has been reworked. Blizzard has done some last-minute changes to the new Anomaly which revolves around weather disturbances that grant your Hero various effects. You can find more information in the patch notes linked below. Starting with 2020 Season 3, Blizzard is replacing Gold rewards with Loot Chests from Storm League/Seasonal Questlines. Mount rewards are returning, and you will receive the Regal Tiger Mount for winning 50 games in Ranked Play in 2020 Season 3. Nexomania II is the summer event for Heroes of the Storm running from the week of June 23 to the week of September 7. (Source)
      Our next Heroes of the Storm patch is live and brings a new Hero - Mei, the Nexomania II event, a new Nexus Anomaly - Climate Phenomena, along with a Mal'Ganis rework and more! Read on for more information.
      NOTE: Orange text indicates a change between PTR and Live notes.
      Quick Navigation:
      New Hero: Mei Nexus Anomaly General Event Collection Storm League Heroes Rework: Mal'Ganis Heroes Bug Fixes New Hero: Mei, A Climatologist
      A brilliant mind with a sunny disposition, Dr. Mei-Ling Zhou joined Overwatch to help solve the world's growing climate problems. Armed with a host of weather-altering technologies, Mei now fights to protect her friends and secure a future for a troubled world.
      Trait [D]
      Cryo-Freeze Mei encases herself in ice, gaining a rapidly decaying Shield that absorbs up to 1104 damage. While active, this Shield grants Unstoppable and restores up to 35% maximum Health. Cooldown: 40 seconds. Basic Abilities
      Snow Blind [Q] Throw a snowball that hits all enemies in an area. Enemies hit take 70 damage, are Slowed by 35%, and are Blinded for 1.5 seconds. Cost: 35 Mana. Cooldown: 10 seconds. Blizzard [W] Command Snowball to create a blizzard at the target location for 2 seconds. Enemies within the blizzard take 13 damage every .25 seconds and are Slowed by 7%, stacking up to 35%. When the blizzard ends, enemies within its area take an additional 75 damage and are stunned for 1.25 seconds. Cost: 70 Mana. Cooldown: 14 seconds. Icing [E] Slide quickly in the targeted direction. When this effect ends, enemies near Mei are knocked back, take 52 damage, and are Slowed by 80%, rapidly decaying over 1.5 seconds. Cost: 70 Mana. Cooldown: 14 seconds. Heroic Abilities
      Avalanche [R1] After .5 seconds, roll a massive snowball that consumes enemy Heroes in its path. At the end of its path, the snowball crumbles, releasing the consumed Heroes, dealing 220 damage and stunning them for .5 per Hero consumed. Cost: 70 Mana. Cooldown: 65 seconds. Ice Wall [R2] After a .75 second delay, create an impassible wall that traps enemy Heroes hit for 2.5 seconds. When the wall expires, trapped Heroes are slowed by 75% decaying over 3 seconds. Cost: 60 Mana. Cooldown: 90 seconds. Talent
      Level 1 Heavy Pack [Q] Increases the duration of Snow Blind’s Slow by 100%. Each time Blizzard damages an enemy Hero, reduce the cooldown of Snow Blind by .125 seconds. Ice Storm [W] Every 3rd hit of Blizzard against enemy Heroes deals an additional 45 damage. Blizzard’s final stun damage is increased by 125% against all enemies. Heat Transfer [Passive] Basic Attacks against Rooted, Stunned, or Slowed Heroes deal 33% more damage. Each time Mei Stuns or Slows an enemy Hero she heals for 18 Health. Level 4 Slushball [Q] Snow Blind deals 50% increased damage and Structures hit are disabled for 3 seconds. Cold Front [E] If Mei enters her own Blizzard while Icing is active, the cooldown of Icing is reduced by 7 seconds and she gains 50 Mana. Crystallize [Trait] Reduce the cooldown of Cryo-Freeze by 15 seconds. Mei gains 50 Spell Armor while Cryo-Freeze is active and for 2 seconds after. Level 7 Induce Hibernation [W] Enemy Heroes inside of Blizzard’s area have their damage dealt reduced by 40%. When Blizzard ends, enemy Heroes within its area gain this effect for an additional 4 seconds. Skating Away [E] When Icing ends, grant Mei and nearby allies 20% Movement Speed and 50 Physical Armor for 3 seconds. Backup Battery [Active] Activate to remove all Roots and Slows and regenerate 20% of maximum Health over 2 seconds. The cooldown of this ability is reduced by 10 seconds each time Mei picks up a Regeneration Globe. Level 13 Flurry [W] While in her own Blizzard, Mei gains 50% increased attack speed and Blizzard’s cooldown refreshes 75% faster. If Mei is in her own Blizzard when it ends, gain these bonuses for 3 additional seconds. Cooling Servos [Trait] Basic Attacks Slow their target by 20% for 1.5 seconds. While Cryo-Freeze is active, Mei’s Basic Ability cooldowns recover 200% faster. Polar Vortex [Passive] Using an ability causes Mei to deal 24 damage a second to nearby enemies for 4 seconds. Enemy Heroes damaged by this effect also have their movement and attack speed Slowed by 20%. Level 16 Fresh Powder [Q] Snow Blind gains an additional charge and its range is increased by 33%. Black Ice [E] Icing’s Slow effect no longer decays over its duration. Icing deals 300% more damage to enemies very close to Mei. Acclimation [Passive] Each time Mei Slows or Stuns an enemy Hero, the damage she deals and healing she receives is increased by 1%, stacking up to 20 times. While at maximum stacks, Mei also gains 10 armor. Lasts 8 seconds. Level 20 Cascade [R1] Reduce the cooldown of Avalanche by 25 seconds. While traveling, Avalanche constantly launches a volley of untalented Snow Blind snowballs ahead of itself. Shatter [R2] When Ice Wall expires, trapped enemy Heroes hit take 210 damage and have their Armor reduced by 25 for 5 seconds. The Big One [Q] Every 15 seconds, your next Snow Blind has 66% increased area and 200% increased damage. Flash Freeze [Trait] Upon taking fatal damage, Mei instantly gains Cryo-Freeze. This effect has a 180 second cooldown. Return to Top
      Nexus Anomaly
      A Call For Help New Nexus Anomaly - Climate Phenomena Strange weather disturbances have been spotted across the Nexus, with realms experiencing rain storms, snow flurries, and foggy mists! Mei's arrival is just in time to help analyze and study these strange weather conditions that have begun occurring. Climate Phenomena is our newest Nexus Anomaly, bringing a variety of fun weather effects to the game. Each battleground has a specific type of weather event that will occur every 4 minutes, with the first event starting at the beginning of the match. Each weather event lasts for 2 minutes before clearing up. This cycle will repeat periodically until the game ends. While these weather events are active, Heroes can gain a unique buff based on the type of active weather. These buffs are:
      Rain Storms Periodically Strike all heroes with lightning every 25-40 seconds, increasing Movement Speed and granting a Lightning Shield that damages nearby enemies. Movement Speed increased by 15%. Damage nearby enemies for 46 damage per second. Buff lasts 8 seconds. Snow Flurries Heroes accumulate a small shield over time while out of combat. Heroes gain 28 Shields every 0.5 seconds, stacking up to 224 (8 stacks total). Shield lasts until destroyed or until the Snow stops falling. Foggy Mists Allows Heroes to gain Stealth after standing in shrubs for a few seconds. After standing in a shrub for 1.5 seconds, Heroes gain Stealth. Stealth lasts 40 seconds or until attacking, taking damage, using an ability, or until the Foggy weather dissipates. Weather events will be active on these Battlegrounds:
      Rain Storms Garden of Terror Sky Temple Warhead Junction Braxis Holdout Dragon Shire Blackheart's Bay Snow Flurries Cursed Hollow Infernal Shrines Volskaya Foundry Alterac Pass Foggy Mists Tomb of the Spider Queen Battlefield of Eternity Hanamura Temple Towers of Doom All other Battlegrounds will use a random weather, including Brawls mode. Return to Top
      General
      A.I. The maximum follow distance for A.I. agents has been increased from 5 to 7. This will allow melee Heroes who are following ranged Heroes to attack targets at maximum range. Favorite Talents New hotkey named "Quick Talent Selection Favorite (Ctrl + `)" has been added under the Hero Management section in Advanced Hotkey settings. You can press this hotkey to select the favorite talent you prepicked when the quick talent selection panel is open. If the prepicked talent is disabled or a future tier is selected, pressing this hotkey will have no effect. Return to Top
      Event
      Nexomania II Event Quests Nexomania II is the summer event for Heroes of the Storm running from the week of June 23 to week of September 7, PDT. One of the most prestigious stops on the Nexomania circuit is the Intermultiversal Nexoweight Championship: No rules, no mercy, just nonstop, bicep-busting carnage. This time, many fans expected Mal’gaucho Mal'Ganis to win it all. The Swingin’ Scourge of Stratholme tore a bloody path through his side of the bracket, burying opponents beneath a deluge of demonic blows. But on the other side of the bracket, a mysterious upstart known only as La Gata de Batalla has proven herself a worthy challenger, defeating foes many times her size en route to the championship match. The arena is packed, with Nexomania legend MC Tombstone roaring away on the mic, and the final battle is about to begin. Whose side are you on? Loot Chests During the Nexomania II event, all Loot Chests you earn through progression, Heroes Brawl, or by spending gold will be Nexomania II Loot Chests. (Except Hero-specific Chests, which will remain unchanged.) Most limited-time items shown above have a chance to drop from Nexomania II Loot Chests only. You can also score Items from previous years’ summer events limited-time loot chests! Note: Loot Chests earned prior to the start of this event will not become Nexomania II Loot Chests. Return to Top
      Collection
      Many seasonal items will be returning to the collection, and will be available for crafting and in Loot Chests for a limited time!
      New Bundles (Limited Time Only!) Pajama Party Mei Heroic Bundle Nexoweight Championship Bundle Mal'gaucho Mal'Ganis Skin Pack El Bandido Imperius Skin Pack Gata de Batalla Li Li Skin Pack Nexomania Best Bros Bundle Nexomania Bitter Rivals Bundle Pumped up Pato Bundle New Skins Renowned Mei Vanguard Mei Pajama Party Mei Panda Pajama Party Mei Gnoll Pajama Party Mei Mal'gaucho Mal'Ganis Nemesis Mal'gaucho Mal'Ganis Underworld Mal'gaucho Mal'Ganis El Bandido Imperius El Fuego Imperius Sinister El Bandido Imperius Vigilante El Bandido Imperius Gata de Batalla Li Li Comeback Gata de Batalla Li Li Underworld Gata de Batalla Li Li Hulking El Chamuco Diablo Pink Singlet El Chamuco Diablo El Festejo Garrosh El Jefe Amarillo Garrosh La Medianoche Lunara La Rosa Lunara La Campeona Sonya Pink Pantera Sonya Championship El Mariachi E.T.C. El Cielo E.T.C. New Mounts Ratón de Batalla Comeback Ratón de Batalla Underworld Ratón de Batalla Pumped Up Pato Pumped Up Swan Underworld Pumped Up Pato Championship Luchihuahua Festive Luchihuahua Wild Pigñata Festive Pigñata Thraller Bill New Announcer Mei Announcer New Content Several new Portraits, Sprays and other items have been added to the Collection! Return to Top
      Storm League
      With the upcoming third Season of 2020, we wanted to make some changes to the reward structure of Storm League.
      Replacing Gold Rewards Starting with Season 3 of 2020, we are removing all Gold rewards from Storm League, End of Season prizes and Seasonal Questlines. This will also affect Season 2 rewards. The new Seasonal Questline reward structure is as follows: a Nexomania II Chest after 5 wins, a Rare Nexomania II Chest after 15 wins, and an Epic Nexomania II Chest after 30 wins. Storm League Reward Mounts Since the inception of Storm League, we have received a lot of feedback about the retirement of Ranked Play reward Mounts. We have heard you and are extremely happy to announce the return of exclusive Storm League Mounts starting next season. The ultimate and final reward of the 2020 Season 3 Questline will be the Regal Tiger Mount, which will be awarded after winning 50 games in Ranked Play. As of Season 3, you won't have to wait for the end of the Season to claim your well-earned Regal Tiger. It will become available as soon as you complete the four-step Storm League Quest Line. The mount only requires you to win 50 games and will be granted to players in all Leagues and Divisions. As usual, we're happy to listen to your feedback. Please share your thoughts with us, so we can continue to adjust and evolve the Storm League rewards further. Return to Top
      Heroes Rework: Mal'Ganis
      Base
      Vitals Health reduced from 2500 to 2450. Health Regeneration reduced from 5.21 to 5.11. Basic Attack Basic Attack damage reduced from 100 to 92. Fel Claws [Q] Damage reduced from 69 to 63. Talents
      Level 1 Vampiric Aura [Trait] Additional functionality: Mal'Ganis heals for 30% of Physical Damage dealt. Time to Feed [Passive] Healing reduced from 52 to 44. Additional functionality: If Mal'Ganis damages a nearby enemy Hero with Fel Claws, double this healing. Level 4 Fueled by Torment [W] Bonus Healing against enemy Heroes increased from 15% to 20%. Might of Sargeras [W] No longer reduces the duration of Necrotic Embrace. Echo of Doom [W] Explosion damage increased from 50 to 54. No longer increases the duration of Necrotic Embrace when its explosion damage hits enemy Heroes. Additional functionality: Gain 5 Mana and reduce the cooldown of Necrotic Embrace by .75 seconds for each enemy Hero hit by its explosion damage. Level 7 Nightmare Fuel [E] Removed. Black Claws [Q] Additional functionality: Basic Attacks after hitting enemy Heroes with Fel Claws also reduces their Armor by 15 for 2 seconds. Will of Tichondrius [Q] New functionality: Each enemy Hero hit by the first 2 slashes of Fel Claws causes the final slash to steal 1% maximum Health, up to 4%. If Mal'Ganis hits at least 4 enemy Heroes with the first 2 slashes of Fel Claws, then the final slash Stuns enemies for an additional .25 seconds. Spreading Plague [E] Adjusted functionality: Spreading Plague’s effect now starts when Mal'Ganis begins using Night Rush instead of when Night Rush expires. Level 13 The Night Beckons [E] Additional functionality: Basic Attacks deal 200% more damage to Sleeping targets. Level 16 Frenzied Assault [Passive] New functionality: Basic Attacks against enemy Heroes with a higher Health percentage heal for an additional 50% of damage dealt. Basic Attacks against enemy Heroes with a lower Health percentage grant 35% Attack Speed for 2 seconds. Blind as a Bat [Active] Additional functionality: Enemy Heroes hit by the final slash of Fel Claws reduces the cooldown of this Ability by 5 seconds. Level 20 Vanquish the Weak [Q] Slow amount increased from 15% to 25%. Alone in the Dark [E] Additional functionality: Reduce the cooldown of Night Rush by 4 seconds. Return to Top
      Heroes
      Murky
      Base
      Spawn Egg [Trait] Health increased from 324 to 420. Health Scaling changed from 30 to 4% per level. Return to Top
      Bug Fixes
      General
      Fixed an issue where Toys 1 Event reward Portraits could not be equipped for those who had earned them in Toys 1 Event in 2018. Heroes
      Anduin Anduin's Light of Stormwind now correctly removes damage over time effects. Murky Murky's Egg Health now properly scales at 4% per level. Stitches Fixed an issue where Slam would go on cooldown when Stitches was interrupted during its initial cast. Tassadar The Ranged Assassin tooltip at the bottom is now properly displaying for Tassadar. Return to Top
      A new Hero, Nexus Anomaly, and Nexomania II await in the Nexus!
×
×
  • Create New...