Stan

Balance Update: Feb 27

Sign in to follow this  

15 posts in this topic

EE5EVR7G2FAY1453319542840.png

A new balance patch has hit the Nexus with changes to Murky, Tychus, Malfurion's Entangling Roots, Tassadar's Khaydarin Resonance talent and more.

Blizzard LogoBlizzard Entertainment (Source)

Assassin

Tychus

Divider_Hero_Tychus_Crop.png

Stats

  • Basic Attack Range decreased from 5.5 to 4.5

Abilities

  • Overkill (Q)
    • Cooldown decreased from 15 to 13 seconds
    • Mana Cost reduced from 75 to 65
  • Commandeer Odin (R)
    • Attack range increased from 8.8 to 9

Talents

  • Level 1
    • Press the Advantage (E)
      • Range increase reduced from 1.9 to 1.5
      • Duration reduced from 4 to 3 seconds
  • Level 13
    • That’s the Stuff! (Trait)
      • New functionality:
        • Minigun heals Tychus for 100% of the bonus damage done to Heroes after the ability ends.
          • This will show a Heal preview during Minigun's duration that will heal Tychus as soon as the ability goes on cooldown.
    • Neosteel Coating (Active)
      • Increased Spell Armor from 50 to 75
Developer Comments:  Tychus has proven to be just as good at Assassin-busting as he is at Tank-busting, which was never our intention. This has made drafting him a good choice against just about any enemy team composition, which has led him to be one of the highest contested Heroes in HGC. We would like to see him gain the most value from sticking to front-line targets so we are lowering his Basic Attack range to limit his options while allowing other ranged Heroes to trade a bit more favorably against him.

Multi-Class

Varian

Divider_Hero_Varian_crop.png

Abilities

  • Charge (E)
    • Cooldown reduced from 14 to 12 seconds
  • Colossus Smash (R)
    • Damage bonus increased from 75 to 100%
  • Twin Blades of Fury (R)
    • Basic Attack damage penalty reduced from 25 to 20%

Talents

  • Level 4
    • Warbringer (E)
      • Now increases Charge's slow from 75% to 85%, instead of adding a stun
  • Level 13
    • Juggernaut (E)
      • Damage reduced from 6% to 5% of the target's maximum Health.
Developer Comments:  The frequency and power of a ranged point click stun was too powerful from Warbringer. While it may have been “balanced” in terms of winrate, its potency wasn’t healthy or fun for opponents. It didn’t offer many options for opponents that were stunned and then Taunted for over 2 seconds, greatly increasing the reliability of other abilities (like Sulfuras Smash). By making Warbringer a massive slow instead of a stun, it allows enemies to use abilities to defend themselves (or forces a Varian to use Taunt early, greatly reducing the duration of his opening crowd control). We’ve shifted more of the power of Warbringer over into the mobility aspect to compensate (since Warbringer makes Charge a 6 second cooldown now). The other part of these changes is providing some buffs to the Assassin focused Heroics to bring them up to par with Taunt, so that Varian can frequently opt into any of the Heroic choices to really fulfill the multi-class Hero fantasy that makes him unique.

Specialist

Murky

Divider_Hero_Murky_Crop.png

Stats

  • Murky Base Maximum Health reduced from 761 to 730
  • Base Health Regeneration reduced from 30.43 to 29.20

Abilities

  • Slime (Q)
    • Slow duration reduced from 8 to 6 seconds
    • Slime slow amount reduced from 25 to 20%
  • March of the Murlocs (R)
    • Cooldown increased from 80 to 110 seconds

    Talents

    • Level 1
      • Fishy Deal (Active)
        • Number of Bribe stacks needed to bribe a Mercenary increased from 7 to 8
        • Maximum stacks increased from 30 to 32
      • Egg Hunt (Trait)
        • Vision range of Fake Eggs reduced by 1
    • Level 4
      • Slime Time (Q)
        • Slow reduced from 35 to 30%
    • Level 7
      • Slippery When Wet (E)
        • Movement Speed bonus increased from 35 to 40%
      • Time to Krill (Passive)
        • Slow reduced from 8 to 7%
    • Level 13
      • Rejuvenating Bubble (E)
        • Healing reduced from 50 to 40% of maximum Health
    Developer Comments:  Murky slimed his way back to the top of the Nexus, and we’re all still cleaning the gunk out of our shoes as a result. His release pushed him much further than intended, so we’re targeting a series of nerfs at some of the frustrating aspects of the Hero. Overall, his effectiveness will be less reliable, and his ability to slow and zone opponents will be less powerful. Nerrrrfgggle Mrrggl.

    Support

    Lúcio

    Divider_Hero_Lucio.png

    Abilities

    • Amp it Up (E)
      • Healing Boost reduced from 16.5 to 15.5

    Talents

    • Level 4
      • Boombox (Active)
        • Duration increased from 20 to 30 seconds
      • Party Mix (W)
        • Bonus range decreased from 25 to 20%

    Malfurion

    Divider_Hero_Malfurion_Crop.png

    Abilities

    • Entangling Roots (E)
      • Root duration reduced from 1.5 to 1.25 seconds
    • Twilight Dream (R)
      • Mana regen reduced from 1.5 to 1.25

    Talents

    • Level 16
    • Tenacious Roots (E)
      • Root duration bonus decreased from .5 to .25 seconds
    Developer Comments:  Malfurion has seen a lot of play at all levels to the point that he is crowding out other Support heroes. While we like his established place in the Nexus, his Entangling Roots is much stronger for its consistency relative to the CC that other heroes in the game provide, particularly when he takes the Tenacious Roots talent. We’re also happy to see that Twilight Dream is so highly valued considering it’s against a strong Healing heroic, but wanted to lower some of the hidden power that it provides in its Mana regeneration to make the decision of which Heroic to take a little more thoughtful.

    Tassadar

    Divider_Hero_Tassadar_Crop.png

    Talents

    • Level 1
      • Khaydarin Resonance (Q)
        • New functionality:
          • Quest: Regeneration Globes grant an additional 50% Mana.
          • Reward(1): After collecting 15 Globes, increase the value of Plasma Shield by 20%.
          • Reward(2): After collecting 30 Globes, increase the duration of Plasma Shield by 100%.
    Developer Comments:  One of our major goals with Hero reworks is attempting to keep as many of the current builds and playstyles that exist for a Hero, trim out older or unhealthy ones, and hopefully open doors for new ones to emerge. When shifting the old Khala’s Embrace to a questing talent (Khaydarin Resonance), we had hoped to lock the immense power that it brought behind a barrier that was difficult to overcome on a lot of maps. In theory, this would make it feel rewarding to take on certain maps, but rarely the most powerful choice. Instead, we found that locking this kind of potential behind an extremely difficult Globe-collecting talent made for a more frustrating experience than a fun one. When taking a step back and considering our options, we felt it best to remove the permanent shielding capabilities and replace it with a less-powerful questing talent.

    Warrior

    Rexxar

    Divider_Hero_Rexxar_Cropped.png

    • Now has a visual indicator for Misha’s leash range.
    • Can now issue Misha commands outside of her leash range. Misha will run to the edge of her range and leash if she attempts to go beyond.

    Bug Fixes

    General

    • Replays: Fixed an issue that could cause an error while scrubbing the timeline during Replay playback.

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    3 hours ago, Valhalen said:

    No more stun on Charge was too much...

    No, that was totally busted, good riddance. I'm sick of facing a stunlock Varian in every single match. Personally, I wish they reduced the charge slow to 25%, decreased its range to 1, and boosted the cooldown on Taunt to 120 seconds.

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites

    Without stun Varian isn't better tank than Sonya (that has 2 stuns), he's forced to interrupt with R that he can't use without charging enemy first to be in range, back to  twin blades of fury again phase like when taunt was bad.  If they want keep Varian tank viable they shoulda have reduced stun time (or taunt time) not deleting it turning him in Illidan n°2.

    Estimating Varian going soon to bottom of heroes list joining Medivh winrate.

    • Like 1

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    1 hour ago, PumpkinRow said:

    No, that was totally busted, good riddance. I'm sick of facing a stunlock Varian in every single match. Personally, I wish they reduced the charge slow to 25%, decreased its range to 1, and boosted the cooldown on Taunt to 120 seconds.

    So... remove the hero entirely from the Meta and any viable build. Cool.

    The removal of stun makes him really weakened. Be nice if they could have just changed it to a root rather than a true stun, then you could use things like recall or portals to avoid the chain CC, but actually still give it some viability as a engagement and set up move for picks. Now they must be truly out of position for it to have any effectiveness.

    • Like 1

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    2 hours ago, PumpkinRow said:

    No, that was totally busted, good riddance. I'm sick of facing a stunlock Varian in every single match. Personally, I wish they reduced the charge slow to 25%, decreased its range to 1, and boosted the cooldown on Taunt to 120 seconds.

    Most of the Warriors that are highly contested picks have at least one stun in their arsenal. There was nothing wrong with Warbringer having a stun; it was the combo with Taunt that led into deeper cc chain follow ups that was frustrating to play against that was the problem. 

    He already had a dismal early game performance, and this nerf will emphasise that. Removing the stun also harms the other two builds for him, as it means that, unlike most other Warriors, he has no way to interrupt channelled casts on enemies. That puts him on the same boat as Leoric, but he still has a niche to fill due to the way he can swallow hp from other high health Heroes, whereas Varian has had some notable competition overtake him on those specs recently; Sonya in particular is performing really well, and can solo camps far quicker, more safely and with less downtime than him as well. 

    On top of that, the change literally makes no sense. The change of someone moving from 75% to 85% slower for one second will be barely noticeable. We all expected some kind of nerf, because yes, the combo was obnoxiously strong when it had follow up, but this just completely overshot the mark. 

    It's a shame, because the last patch that swapped his Banners for tools like Mortal Strike and Shattering Throw felt great.

    • Like 2

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    10 hours ago, Plergoth said:

    Most of the Warriors that are highly contested picks have at least one stun in their arsenal. There was nothing wrong with Warbringer having a stun; it was the combo with Taunt that led into deeper cc chain follow ups that was frustrating to play against that was the problem. 

    He already had a dismal early game performance, and this nerf will emphasise that. Removing the stun also harms the other two builds for him, as it means that, unlike most other Warriors, he has no way to interrupt channelled casts on enemies. That puts him on the same boat as Leoric, but he still has a niche to fill due to the way he can swallow hp from other high health Heroes, whereas Varian has had some notable competition overtake him on those specs recently; Sonya in particular is performing really well, and can solo camps far quicker, more safely and with less downtime than him as well. 

    On top of that, the change literally makes no sense. The change of someone moving from 75% to 85% slower for one second will be barely noticeable. We all expected some kind of nerf, because yes, the combo was obnoxiously strong when it had follow up, but this just completely overshot the mark. 

    It's a shame, because the last patch that swapped his Banners for tools like Mortal Strike and Shattering Throw felt great.

    The combo with Taunt was certainly very bad but yeah, maybe getting rid of the stun entirely did overstep the mark. I feel like it would have made more sense to get rid of Warbringer's cooldown reduction on Charge, and increase the cooldown on Taunt. That way the combo would still be there and still rek stuff but it would have to be used a bit more cleverly since it wouldn't be available as much.

    On the other side of things, if the combo was so consistent that Blizzard felt it needed to be addressed, how about buffing Cleanse....?

     

    Edit: Had a typo </3

    Edited by MurkyFelix

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites

    I remember when Varian launch, people complaining about the Warbringer, that was to op for 1s of stun every 6 seconds. So I presume Blizzard took this and nerf the talent. And to be fair it´s was annoyng to deal with Charge stun plus Provoke, not fun especially if you have follow up damage like Li-Ming, Ragnaros or even Chromie. The problem is, early game Varian its not good, the only thing that makes Varian scary it was this stun, so removing this its like " ok, they have Varian, nothing to worry about".

    But with all that, i think i agree with developer commentary about Varian. Even if they reduce the duration of stun or taunt the combo will be the same

    Edited by Iginis7

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites

    HORRIBLE change. The stun was basically the only reason Varian was picked and sought after. He now is just a weird earlygame hero with a lvl 10 choice between a 1) tank with no cc and nothing special. Why take a Varian tank now? 2) Illidan the second, minus the major mobility and damage avoidance (or an inefficient Sonya) 3) a clunky melee burst damagedealer who dives and dies (ok, he killed the lunara.. oh no wait, the stun is gone and so is his strong engage-followup). Go pick a Thrall, Greymane or Zeratul.

    Thanks Blizzard! At least I had fun for a while playing Varian after lvl 10. I guess playtime is over. Good luck catching dust Varian, see you next year :DDD

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites

    And it's sad that there were so many other viable solutions to the Varian dilemma.  He wasn't exactly OP, he just had a playstyle that destroyed the possibility of counter play.

    Option A)  Make Charge a skillshot that stuns the first person he connects with, which keeps him viable but makes him more like Muradin.

    Option B)  Longer cooldown on the stun and taunt, since cleanse has a 60 second cooldown

    Option C)  Shorten cooldown on cleanse since the game is so lock-down heavy right now.  Dropping it 45 seconds effectively nerfs Varian

    It's like they got upset that his assassin builds weren't viable at higher levels of play, so they ruined the only viable build he had.

    • Like 1

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    6 minutes ago, FirstBlood said:

    Option A)  Make Charge a skillshot that stuns the first person he connects with, which keeps him viable but makes him more like Muradin.

    This is a very good idea, making Charge a skillshot would solve a lot of problems. It would also give Varian a escape mechanism, which is something he severely lacks.

    Edited by Valhalen
    • Like 1

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    13 hours ago, MurkyFelix said:

    On the other side of things, if the combo was so consistent that Blizzard felt it needed to be addressed, how about buffing Cleanse....?

    I've been wondering if they'll buff Cleanse (or similar effects), but it seems they are more focused on controlling the amount of mez that can be landed in any one game and for long they can lock players out of actions, which is fine by me as well. Buffing Cleanse - even a small one - would have knock on consequences for not just the Supports that have them, as it's already an invaluable asset to have, but double Supp comps, Heroes with unique self cleanse or resistance to mez effects, or other heroes such as Kharazim with Cleanse built into their kit at a later stage of the game for a notable power spike. It'd also affect heroes that rely heavily on landing a mez effect to secure a kill, such as Kerrigan and the Butcher. I think it's best left alone for now. 

     

    3 hours ago, Skyewalker said:

    1) tank with no cc and nothing special. Why take a Varian tank now? 2) Illidan the second, minus the major mobility and damage avoidance (or an inefficient Sonya) 3) a clunky melee burst damagedealer who dives and dies (ok, he killed the lunara.. oh no wait, the stun is gone and so is his strong engage-followup


    Exactly. It was already possible to juke a Charge by casting something like Barrel Roll very precisely, and then have Varian comically Flash-run towards you from a mile away into towers. I don't know if it was intentional, but this just means that any Hero that might have been a priority target for a Smash before, but has any mobility whatsoever, can bait a Charge and then simply kite Varian without taking any real amounts of damage. It hasn't just hurt Tank Varian, who *may* still have a niche to fill on teams that need something to deal with a Shield comp, but it makes his assassin builds even less effective and riskier to play. 

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites

    Making charge a skillshot won't fix Varian, because you are giving him an escape pratically instead of a engage tool, nobody will use charge to solely engage that should be the reason of the word 'Charge'. Also will be a terrible engage tool in the form of a skillshot even if it stun for 4 seconds instead of 1 because it can be easy missed like Storm Bolt of Muradin especially at max range and will be a worse Muradin because if you Charge not stunning anything you probably die there for your mistake since Varian has no mobility or defensive tools. At least if Muradin miss Storm bolt isn't severely overextended.

    To fix the issue the only solutions are nerf the stun time to like 0,5 sec or increase Charge cd so he can't repeately spam it in tf like was before that you coulda stun the same person 2 times in a row since cd was so short.

    Cleanse and related don't fix it also, if Varain charge the support he can't cleanse himself making cleanse completely useless, and if you keep your distance as support you probably can't cleanse the stunned target anyway because you are too far. And anyway Varian spam stuns every 6 secs while your cleanse will be never less than 30 sec cd after the first usage so he can try again shortly after.

    In the current state Varian is bad as Li Ming with nerfed teleport and not worth being used.

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    10 hours ago, Plergoth said:

    I've been wondering if they'll buff Cleanse (or similar effects), but it seems they are more focused on controlling the amount of mez that can be landed in any one game and for long they can lock players out of actions, which is fine by me as well. Buffing Cleanse - even a small one - would have knock on consequences for not just the Supports that have them, as it's already an invaluable asset to have, but double Supp comps, Heroes with unique self cleanse or resistance to mez effects, or other heroes such as Kharazim with Cleanse built into their kit at a later stage of the game for a notable power spike. It'd also affect heroes that rely heavily on landing a mez effect to secure a kill, such as Kerrigan and the Butcher. I think it's best left alone for now. 

    True. Though the meta is just stunlocks now (to use Oxygen's analysis), Blizzard do seem intent on letting stunlocks happen, just less consistently than it has been (hence this nerf). The only real issue I have with Cleanse is the long cooldown when you'd use it to stop 2 seconds of CC. I realize the significance of those seconds but the view on paper always feels less impactful, especially when the CC is back up in ~8seconds. Also there's me wandering into Malfurion's root when trying to Cleanse my ally out of it but that's me failing as a Brightwing. But I do feel like it could do with a buff, it just isn't worth it since so many heroes would be affected. 

    Also for clarity, I took "mez" as meaning CC but I don't know what it actually means.

    2 hours ago, Hanz39 said:

    Cleanse and related don't fix it also, if Varain charge the support he can't cleanse himself making cleanse completely useless, and if you keep your distance as support you probably can't cleanse the stunned target anyway because you are too far. And anyway Varian spam stuns every 6 secs while your cleanse will be never less than 30 sec cd after the first usage so he can try again shortly after.

    In the current state Varian is bad as Li Ming with nerfed teleport and not worth being used.

    To be nitpicking; supports can't self cast Cleanse anyway, so any CC on them is as bad. And there is a middle ground where you are close enough to whoever got hit to Cleanse them. I get it isn't viable in a longterm against Varian (pre-patch) but it's better than nothing. Plus if he Charged someone who get's Cleansed, that's no stun, no Taunt and Varian can't really get away, so a lot of the time he'd be too low health by the time Charge is back or he'd be dead.

    And that is very sweeping, that last statement. Li-Ming is very worth being used, her resets can just snowball (more like avalanche) the game plus her damage is brilliant along with mobility. Plus yes, Varian isn't as good now but a 75% slow is nothing to sniff at and slow is still CC (hello Rexxar) and can be followed up on with a Taunt. Now, the targets just have an chance to get away but it's a very slim chance

    Edited by MurkyFelix
    Typo

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    On 2017-03-01 at 5:17 AM, MurkyFelix said:

     Also for clarity, I took "mez" as meaning CC but I don't know what it actually means.

    I believe it comes from the MMO EverQuest. It had a class called the Enchanter that could cast a spell named Mesmerize, which would stun or sleep a target. 

    • Like 1

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites

    Create an account or sign in to comment

    You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

    Create an account

    Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

    Register a new account

    Sign in

    Already have an account? Sign in here.

    Sign In Now

    Sign in to follow this  

    • Recently Browsing   0 members

      No registered users viewing this page.

    • Similar Content

      • By Oxygen

        We present our ninth Heroes of the Storm Meta Tier List for the Garrosh patch of August 2017.
        Our ninth Heroes of the Storm Meta Tier List for the month of August 2017 is here!
         
        Welcome to Icy Veins's Meta Tier List for the Garrosh patch. The goal if 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). Although tier listings are generally the product of balance, many factors come into play when discussing the relative perceived strengths of heroes, including player regions, maps, play style, skill level, and, of course, personal perception. As such, any tier list—including this very one—should never be interpreted as gospel, but rather, as a guide to better grasp what to expect with regards to typical drafting experiences. One useful application of such lists is to allow you know which heroes to look out for in terms of practice and counterplay, ultimately improving your knowledge of the game.
         
        Using the list
        As stated above, tier lists are easy to mistake for gospel. As new strategies are discovered and experimented with, so changes the perception of the relative strengths of each hero. Tier lists still prove to be useful as a snapshot of player expectations in terms of drafting. Although it is generally considered preferable to focus on high tier heroes (Prime and Core tiers), it is important to note that Heroes of the Storm's wild character and map designs make it so that any given hero's tier position is prone to fluctuate depending on the situation at hand.
        One classic example of such is that of Kerrigan on the Infernal Shrines map. Although we currently judge her to be a mid-tier hero, her drafting priority shoots up to first-pick or first-ban material on this specific map due to the nature of its objective. Certain heroes also synergise so well with each other that the sole fact of having the opportunity of drafting them together is generally enough to increase their potential. Tassadar and Tracer, for instance, are generally nightmarish to deal with for many. There are too many examples of these interactions to reasonably produce here, but we invite you to consult our guides to know exactly where and when each hero shines. The guides have been linked in the lists below for your convenience - just click any of the hero names to access them.
        A ↑ next to a hero's name means its tier list position has increased since the previous month whereas a ↓ means just the opposite. Additionally, a + or - sign indicates short-to-medium term predictions (which is to say, about a month) for tier increase(s) or decrease(s), respectively. These are often updated after significant balance patches and/or when clear trends are emerging.
        If you're newer to the game, also consider visiting our glossary for a comprehensive list of discrete Heroes of the Storm terms.
         
        Prime Tier
        Warrior Assassin Support Specialist Anub'arak  Genji Uther - Stitches↑ Greymane↑ Tassadar↑     Malthael     Prime tier heroes are considered to be extremely strong in all situations, and show no obvious weakness. They are very often banned or picked right away, as they generally dictate the pace of most matches.
         
        Core Tier
        Warrior Assassin Support Specialist Arthas Falstad Auriel Nazeebo Dehaka Gul'dan- Rehgar Sylvanas Diablo+ Li-Ming Stukov Xul↑ E.T.C.↑ The Butcher↑     Garrosh (new!) Valla     Sonya Zeratul     Varian (Tank)                       Core tier heroes are strong in a wide variety of situations and have few counter-picking possibility. They should form the core of your team, and be picked after Prime Tier heroes have been distributed.
         
        Viable Tier
        Warrior Assassin Support Specialist Artanis Alarak Brightwing Abathur Chen Cassia↑ Kharazim Azmodan D.Va↓ Chromie Li Li Zagara+ Johanna↓ Jaina Lt. Morales Probius Leoric Kael'thas Lúcio   Muradin Lunara Malfurion↓   Tyrael Ragnaros Tyrande   Zarya↓ Samuro       Thrall↓       Tracer↑       Varian (Damage)-       Zul'jin             Viable tier heroes are generally well-rounded that have either fallen out of favour, or, inversely, are on the rise in popularity, due to the current Prime tier contenders.
         
        Niche Tier
        Warrior Assassin Support Specialist Cho'gall Cho'gall - Gazlowe↓ Rexxar↓ Illidan   Medivh   Kerrigan↓   Murky   Nova   Sgt. Hammer   Raynor       Valeera↓       Tychus     Niche tier heroes have niche application on certain maps or for certain team compositions. They are generally picked to "round out" your team composition when your team composition is missing out on key components, such as a "jungler" (mercenary camps), a solo laner, or solid waveclear.
         
        Bottom Tier
        The Lost Vikings Bottom tier Heroes are deemed to be either considerably weaker than the majority of other Heroes, or much more challenging to play properly. Although they may situationally shine, these Heroes are generally avoided by most players.
         
        Metagame assessment
        Greetings. Regulars may have noticed that the changes featured in this month's list have been more aggressive than usual. In essence, I feel like a clear metagame is finally begin to emerge after a slew of important changes, making it easier for me to pinpoint notable trends. And so, the result is a volatile tier list that should be extremely stable next month. Shall we begin?
        I like Garrosh quite a bit, and I can't help but feel that the combined novelty and high skill cap skew his win rates towards the bottom of the roster. Case in point: his Master level win rates are nearly 12% higher than his Bronze level win rates. This is a case of Medivh all over again; however, whereas both Garrosh and Medivh did start at 30-something-percent win rates, Garrosh has been steadily climbing over the week. Both Diablo and Stitches are currently very popular picks, and Garrosh provides similar utility through his Groundbreaker + Wrecking Ball combo. Talents to watch out for are undoubtedly Warbreaker (reduced cooldown on Groundbreaker, level 1) and Intimidation (40% reduced attack speed on targets hit by Groundbreaker, level 7), which allow Garrosh to neuter basic attack reliant heroes much earlier than other heroes can. Into the Fray (can use Wrecking Ball on allies once every 30 seconds, level 7) is also an interesting one as it gives Garrosh his own version of Cleanse and  the ability to say 'hey, you're mispositioned, stop it', which should come in handy whenever an ally is, well, not standing where they should be. It also breaks Lamb to the Slaughter on top of a few other nasty heroic abilities, which is great.
        Stitches has finally ascended to godhood, and although I was slow to give him a seat in the core tier, repeated high level hero league bans and a high amount of tournament play speak for themselves. As stated last month, the Slam build remains an easy way of topping the damage charts all while being difficult to kill. Gorge has also seen an upsurge in popularity, and particularly on maps where combat tends to happen close by fortifications, such as Dragon Shire, Tomb of the Spider Queen, Towers of Doom, et cetera. Couple this with Falstad's Mighty Gust, and you have a game winning combo that isn't all that difficult to pull off.
        I don't have much to say about Greymane that isn't self-obvious; Cursed Bullet is a great choice in a meta where healthy tanks are popular, though Go for the Throat is also re-emerging for blowup team compositions, thanks to its reliable damage and gap closing feature, on top of its ability to reset.
        To shoehorn last month's tier list again, I made a snarky comment about Tassadar always being either too strong or too weak. Right now, he enables two borderline heroes–Illidan and Tracer–on top of providing flexible heroic ability choices for both more defensive and blowout team compositions. His versatility just makes him never feel like a bad pick, and Oracle keeps the Zeratuls at bay as a bonus.
        E.T.C. is this month's surprise as players sift through forgotten heroes to solo tank, provide potential mapwide mobility through Stage Dive, and just generally provide reliable crowd control. You'll note a sore lack of interruption from a lot of high tier picks as well, making Mosh Pit about as good as it'll get.
        We haven't seen The Butcher be more than a one trick for nearly two years now, but the brute is back in force, thanks for buffs several players have misinterpreted as nerfs. I suspect, however, that some of his newfound success may be due to players having some difficulty adapting to his new gank-heavy playstyle and generally counterpicking him. Shall the Brightwings, Cassias, and Li Lis of the world rise up to the challenge?
        Xul has continued to perform well, and although he is the second least popular core tier hero (right behind Zeratul), he will keep on being effective on Blackheart's Bay, Dragon Shire, Gardens of Terror, Infernal Shrines, and Towers of Doom simply due to the importance of having a strong split pusher on these maps. Just make sure you go for Skeletal Mages, which tend to block a lot of those abilities strong tanks currently rely upon to get picks, on top of being generally disruptive.
      • By Stan

        Lost Cavern is a single-lane battleground that has been chosen for this week's brawl! Complete three matches to earn a Loot Chest.
        Blizzard (Source)
        This week’s brawl is Lost Cavern! It’s all-out mayhem on our single-lane battleground – Lost Cavern. Queue up, choose your Hero, and try to best to bring down the enemy Core!

        Rules:
        Shuffle pick - Choose from one of three Heroes before entering the battle. Standard play - no talent or level restrictions. The first team to destroy the enemy Core wins! Rewards:
        Complete three matches of Lost Cavern to earn a Loot Chest! Find out more about the Heroes Brawl game mode on our Heroes Brawl site; and as always, you can find more information on this week’s Brawl by clicking the Brawl Info button at the bottom of the play screen when preparing to queue for the Brawl game mode.
      • By Stan

        The 90th episode of WTF Moments is here.
        Heroes of the Storm Highlights is back with the 90th episode of WTF Moments.
      • By Stan

        It's time to get hyped! Gamescom 2017 is just over a week away and even though Blizzard hasn't shared the full schedule yet, we'll get to see Team expert battling it out against Team Liquid on August 23 from 14:00 to 15:30 CEST.
        Both teams played against each other during Western Clash and Team expert easily defeated Team Liquid with a final score of 3:0. Will they be able to take revenge? Another interesting match is a YouTuber clash between Team ApeCrime & Team PietSmiet. Stay tuned for a full schedule.
        Blizzard (Source)
        Whether you’re an esports fanatic or just love live MOBA action, you’ll definitely want to catch our two epic show matches either in person or via live stream.
        Team expert vs. Team Liquid
        Some of the very best players in the world will be battling it out at gamescom, as Team Liquid and Team expert face off on Wednesday, August 23 from 14:00 to 15:30 CEST.

        Team expert
        Based in Germany, Team expert is known for executing unique drafts and utilizing niche heroes. Their roster is well accustomed to success—they finished second in the recent 2017 HGC Western Clash, and are currently ranked number two in the HGC Europe standings.
         
          Team Liquid
        Team Liquid boasts the longest running five-player roster in the HGC, and it just so happens that four of them are German! They’re sure to have plenty of local support at gamescom, which may be just what they need after recent battles with Team Expert. Their Heroes Showdown opponents knocked them out of the HGC Western Clash earlier this month. Can they take revenge in Cologne?
         
        Team ApeCrime vs. Team PietSmiet
        Get ready for the most legendary YouTuber clash this year! German music and comedy team ApeCrime will challenge gaming personalities PietSmiet on Friday, August 25 from 11:45 to 13:15. Be sure to follow along and find out who’ll be victorious in this battle of the titans.
        Team ApeCrime
        With more than five million subscribers over two channels on YouTube, ApeCrime is sure to have their fair share of fans in the gamescom crowd! Well known for their awesome music and hilarious videos, Cengiz Dogrul, Andre Schiebler, and Jan-Christoph Meyer will offer some top-notch entertainment on stage. With Michael ‘KendricSwissh’ Kratzel and Walter ‘MFPallytime’ Hopkins rounding out their team, they’re sure to bring a few surprises to the Nexus.
        Team PietSmiet
        PietSmiet has been producing gaming-related content since 2011, including “Let’s Play” videos, “Best Of” roundups, and their “Let’s Ask” series. More than two and half million fans follow their channels on YouTube, and they’re sure to earn a few more at gamescom. Chris Stachelhaus, Jonathan Apelt, and Sebastian Lenßen will be joined by esports expert Derek ‘DunkTrain’ Arabian and “Tryhard for Good” streamer Kevin ‘Kev1n’ Rubiszewski.