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Comments on Performance-Based Matchmaking by Lead Systems Designer Travis McGeathy

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Redditor Elitesparkle gathered insightful comments by Lead Systems Designer Travis McGeathy about the upcoming performance-based matchmaking system.

Heroes of the Storm will be soon updated with a new MMR system that takes individual gameplay into account. The current system is limited to wining / losing a game. The new system is more accurate, because it uses various parameters to calculate your MMR. Lead Systems Designer Travis McGeathy answered some interesting questions about the new system over on reddit.

Screenshots from the What's Next Panel

The 2018 update is scheduled for mid-December.

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Any changes also planned for uncertainty?

Uncertainty doesn't exist in the same form in the new system. The core concept of something that limits how much MMR can adjust on a per-game basis is there, but the factors that go into it are different.

Looks like new system promotes maining a few heroes rather than flexibility, true or not, and how big is the impact if true?

The most important thing is still winning the game. That hasn't changed. Sometimes, that means sticking to heroes you know really well. Other times, that means having flexibility in your hero roster and playing the heroes that best fit the situation.

Might be a stupid question, but if it's only about winning, why do we have stats-based MMR? why the win isn't the only factor? Isn't the concept of stats-based MMR less accurate than the winrate itself to calculate your odd of winning?

It's about speed more than accuracy. The current system, based entirely on wins vs loses, works, but because your skill is diluted in a team of 5, unless you are dramatically better (or worse) than the rest of the team, it can take a large number of games before the difference in skill translates to more wins (or loses) and moves your MMR to where it should be. By factoring in individual skill to the equation, it can arrive at the proper MMR much faster which means the matchmaker can make better matches overall.

Is draft/banning taken into account? Choosing the right hero in draft may be more important than performing better than peers on a certain hero.

Drafting matters in the same way as the above statement. Drafting is a skill and how well you draft affects your win rate.

All in all, do you have some additional insight into what parameters are used? How zoning, peeling, bodyblocking, skillshot blocking is taken into account? How will Force Wall-Tassadar be able to compete with Archon-Tassadar?

We have great insight into what parameters are used...but aren't going into that level of detail externally.

Also do you plan to add more parameters in the mix?

We'll add more parameters as it makes sense.

There's some concern about how reliable is data on low played heroes — maybe like Chen, Rexxar, TLV, anything on that? (Though I can't imagine any answer here but "we think our data is reliable enough" :D)

We have more than enough data on all existing heroes. For new heroes or major reworks, the performance-based adjustments will basically be disabled until enough data exists.

Are we right to assume that new MMR calculation would be applied to all game modes? For QM, it looks like a step in the direction of per-hero MMR, do you think we may end up there, or at least do you think it may be viable to maintain?

It will apply to all game modes that have MMR.

Can you win a game yet still lose MMR points? IE: a player goes full tilt, intentionally tries to throw. But the other 4 players are just dominating and still win the game.

No. You'll only gain points on a win and lose them on a loss. If you get full carried for a game, you won't lose points, but you also aren't going to gain very many either.

I think people's main concerns are along the lines of "who determines which stats are important" and "why these stats and not these other ones". I assume you guys are running some kind of adaptive machine learning, but most people are not going to understand that so maybe some kind of brief summary into how that works can help to alleviate the main concerns. Just a suggestion.

Quite right. For the "who determines which stats are important", its the players. We've chosen the stats to monitor, but which ones are important for that situation is something we are measuring, not determining ourselves.

About revealing MMR and the general clarity. Assuming "no" on "if you're going to reveal MMR" (:D) I'd like to ask whether we would be able to see when the adjustment takes place on the post-match screen, like we see PRA now.

We won't have visible MMR for this update, but I do still want to do it in the future. For now, you'll mainly see the effects through rank points. We're planning to swap out personal rank adjustment for a more direct performance adjustment which will give better insight while filling a similar role of keeping rank close to MMR. I'm not sure right now whether that will be for this season or the next yet.

Spot on and part of why visible MMR hasn't been a big priority for us but, there are some advantages to it:
- Currently, rank is the only visible indicator of skill. This forces us to link rank to MMR so they don't diverge too much because players get upset when they see people of different rank in their games even if they are actually the same skill. That's not ideal and leads to oddities with matchmaking when rank and MMR do diverge.
- Even though we don't show MMR, players have created other sources to approximate their MMR. The information isn't very accurate, but being the only source of knowledge, it gets cited frequently when players feel there are issues with matchmaking. There's two issues here: first, it gives a false impression that matchmaking is poor for some players and second, it makes it harder to understand when there are actually issues with matchmaking since the real issues can get buried. Effectively, for players that really care about MMR, we already have most of the downsides associated with visible MMR without having the upsides of it being accurate information.

But what order of magnitude are you all thinking? 10 points? 20, 50? Just trying to get a rough understanding of the overall impact it might have on gaining.

That's a tuning point we haven't settled on yet.

The system, unless specifically programmed to do otherwise, will think a death at the last moment is extremely meaningful since it is normally a 60s death timer.

Time is factored into the measurements. If you're dead for the last few seconds of a match, there wouldn't be any measurable impact relative to everything else that happened that game.

Regarding the new performance based MMR changes, does this mean if my team has captured the winning altar on Towers of Doom and for the fun of it I walk into the enemy death zone and die, my MMR will be adversely affected from this little bit of fun? Or perhaps there are 5 enemies killing my core and there are 4 allies dead. I have no chance to defend the core but rather than try and risk receiving an extra death I won't lose as much MMR if I stay in base? Curious about this.

Everything is by time, including deaths. If you die in the last second of a match, its not going to mean much. Even a full death in the last minutes would really only be a minor modifier overall once diluted against your overall performance in the game. The biggest factor for MMR adjustment is still whether you won or lost. Your overall performance is secondary to that and any particular moment is just a small part of that overall performance.

Does this mean that winning a game quickly and playing well will reward the same personal adjustment as having good stats in a long game? Some people are concerned that players will want to artificially extend game lengths to try and pad their stats before winning. Especially in games where the opponent is greatly outmatched.

Yeah, definitely. Everything factors game time into it for that exact reason.

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My conclusions:

-Win ratio is the most important

-Game lenght does not affect performance

-It might promote the usage of the same hero(he tried not to give a clear answear so this means the answear wouldn't please the players)

-We still don't know how MMR is calculated.

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11 hours ago, Stan said:

The most important thing is still winning the game. That hasn't changed. Sometimes, that means sticking to heroes you know really well. Other times, that means having flexibility in your hero roster and playing the heroes that best fit the situation.

That will force people to actually learn the Heroes in Try Mode or VS AI before compromising entire team compositions because they don't know how things work. For instance, we all know that "Nova main" who doesn't even know that the red eye icon means you've been detected.

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I was hoping new system would go away from winning being only major parameter, because it's team statistic, not something that is entirely upon you.

I'll only mention one other system from I game I used to play, WN8 for World of Tanks.
This measure is community driven, nothing official. Despite being system, well, that calls out for  stat-whoring people (don't know other word), it's really hard to do so that you aren't actively winning. Main component to WN8 was doing damage and assisting others in doing damage, only way to break system was to be able to somehow do a lot of damage on game that will be lost, really hard to do. 
Winrate is part of it, but it only made a small portion.

I'm not sure why are they persistent on winning being main driver of what happens with your MMR.
 

Can you win a game yet still lose MMR points? IE: a player goes full tilt, intentionally tries to throw. But the other 4 players are just dominating and still win the game.

No. You'll only gain points on a win and lose them on a loss. If you get full carried for a game, you won't lose points, but you also aren't going to gain very many either."

They stated it themselves, it's still not accurate in those extremities.

Edited by SleepySheepy

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2 hours ago, SleepySheepy said:

I was hoping new system would go away from winning being only major parameter, because it's team statistic, not something that is entirely upon you.

I'll only mention one other system from I game I used to play, WN8 for World of Tanks.
This measure is community driven, nothing official. Despite being system, well, that calls out for  stat-whoring people (don't know other word), it's really hard to do so that you aren't actively winning. Main component to WN8 was doing damage and assisting others in doing damage, only way to break system was to be able to somehow do a lot of damage on game that will be lost, really hard to do. 
Winrate is part of it, but it only made a small portion.

I'm not sure why are they persistent on winning being main driver of what happens with your MMR.

The main difference is that World of Tanks has 15v15 matches, where teamwork is not as crucial as in HotS (that's not to say that it is not important in WoT), and since there is no draft phase, you don't have to be able to adapt to enemy team's composition. You can simply roll with a Tier X SPG and get a high rating. If people were to do that in HotS, the team compositions would be pretty bad, so, as they said, those are reflected in the win rate. 

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4 hours ago, SleepySheepy said:

I was hoping new system would go away from winning being only major parameter...
 

Can you win a game yet still lose MMR points? IE: a player goes full tilt, intentionally tries to throw. But the other 4 players are just dominating and still win the game.

No. You'll only gain points on a win and lose them on a loss. If you get full carried for a game, you won't lose points, but you also aren't going to gain very many either."

They stated it themselves, it's still not accurate in those extremities.

And they did. Now it's not the only major parameter, but one of many. But it's still a priority, which is very logical, isn't it? Or you were hoping that even when losing a match you could still EARN mmr? I'm sorry but I couldn't help reading that between your lines.

And just skipped the rest of your post about WoT. It's completely irrelevant simply because comparing games of the same genre is a risk of running into wrong argumentation, let alone mentioning games of completely different nature.

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I understand winning and losing being the primary parameters.  If they weren't, EVERYONE would just prioritize Nova and try and go 15-0 every match, losses be damned.

Speaking as someone who hovers around a 50% win rate (keeping in mind I play my lowest ranked hero to fill quests), I have a lot of games with people who, frankly, have no idea about even basic strategy.  I also go on a ton of long (10 games+) loosing streaks.  And I almost never carry.  HotS has been VERY frustrating at times as a result.  As far as I'm concerned, MMR matchmaking can't get much worse then it currently is.

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15 hours ago, gamerk2 said:

I understand winning and losing being the primary parameters.  If they weren't, EVERYONE would just prioritize Nova and try and go 15-0 every match, losses be damned.

Speaking as someone who hovers around a 50% win rate (keeping in mind I play my lowest ranked hero to fill quests), I have a lot of games with people who, frankly, have no idea about even basic strategy.  I also go on a ton of long (10 games+) loosing streaks.  And I almost never carry.  HotS has been VERY frustrating at times as a result.  As far as I'm concerned, MMR matchmaking can't get much worse then it currently is.

Yep, matchmaking in HotS is terrible, that's why I quit. Even though I pretty much always had the best stats (xp, damage, ka/d ratio, heal) in lost matches, this system is not making me coming back.

Enough is enough.

Edited by Esmer

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 I assume you guys are running some kind of adaptive machine learning, but most people are not going to understand that so maybe some kind of brief summary into how that works can help to alleviate the main concerns. Just a suggestion.

Why people are so afraid to ask the damn question ? That question is: when will you reveal what is taken into consideration when calculating one's MMR ?

If Blizzard want HotS to be a competetive game then how players are supposed to be competetive when they don;t know how system works ?? This irritates me so much :/ If the system is as good as they describe it then there should be no problem with telling people how does it work exactly. If they don't want to reveal this info then there is sth wrong with it imo.

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I hope HotS dies out as a result of the poor matchmaking that they've had since the start. Came over to see the pretty models left after hitting master q'ing as Aba/Murky. This game is the pretty version of a League of Legends shortbus.

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On 14. 11. 2017. at 5:21 PM, Jonar said:

And they did. Now it's not the only major parameter, but one of many. But it's still a priority, which is very logical, isn't it? Or you were hoping that even when losing a match you could still EARN mmr? I'm sorry but I couldn't help reading that between your lines.

And just skipped the rest of your post about WoT. It's completely irrelevant simply because comparing games of the same genre is a risk of running into wrong argumentation, let alone mentioning games of completely different nature.

Yeah, you "read" it right. Seems silly to me that MMR will be positive or negative just depending on win/loss.

Is that wrong thinking? I would say it's not, but of course, I could be wrong.

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      PTR Note: In order to focus playtesting and feedback on the 2018 Gameplay Update and Stealth changes found in this patch, Hanzo will not be available for play on the Public Test Realm until the week of November 27.  Trait 
      Natural Agility (D) Target unpathable terrain or a Structure to jump to the other side of it. Basic Abilities
      Storm Bow (Q) Activate to charge an arrow that deals 270 damage to the first enemy hit. Storm Bow's range increases the longer it is Channeled. Reactivate to fire. Scatter Arrow (W) Fire an arrow that deals 85 to the first enemy Hero hit. Scatter Arrow can collide with terrain and Structures, splitting into 5 arrows that travel extra distance, ricochet up to 4 additional times, and deal 85 damage each to the first enemy hit. Sonic Arrow (E) Fire an arrow that grants vision in a large area 8 seconds. Enemies inside are revealed for 1 second. If Sonic Arrow lands directly on an enemy, it deals 150 damage to them and follows them as they move. Heroic Abilities
      Dragonstrike (R) After 1.5 seconds, summon a pair of Spirit Dragons which travel forward, dealing 52 damage every 0.25 seconds to enemy Heroes in its area. Enemies in the center take 150% damage. Dragon’s Arrow (R) Fire a missile that travels across the battleground. Explodes upon hitting an enemy Hero, dealing 100 damage to all nearby enemies and Stunning them for 0.5 seconds. After traveling a medium distance, the damage is increased to 200 and the Stun duration to 1.25 seconds. After traveling a long distance, the damage is increased to 350 and the Stun duration to 2 seconds. 2018 Gameplay Update
      Battleground Objectives
      The first Battleground objective event will now activate 90 seconds into the match, following a 30-second warning, for the following Battlegrounds: Blackheart’s Bay Doubloon Chests will now consistently spawn 3 minutes after the final Chest during a the previous event has been captured. Braxis Holdout Beacon events after the first will now consistently spawn 2 minutes and 10 seconds after a previous Zerg wave has been defeated. Dragon Shire Shrines will now consistently spawn 2 minutes after a Dragon Knight has been killed. The first Battleground objective event will now activate 3 minutes into the match, following a 30-second warning, for the following Battlegrounds: Battlefield of Eternity Cursed Hollow Garden of Terror Haunted Mines Infernal Shrines Sky Temple Towers of Doom Warhead Junction The following Battleground objective timers are unchanged: Tomb of the Spider Queen Volskaya Foundry The Minimap will now indicate the next objective spawn location for the following Battlegrounds: Cursed Hollow The first Shrine indicator will appear on the Minimap 30 seconds after the game begins, and subsequent indicators will appear 15 seconds after the previous Tribute has been captured. Infernal Shrines The first Tribute indicator will appear on the Minimap 30 seconds after the game begins, and subsequent indicators will appear 30 seconds after a Punisher is defeated. Hover the cursor over a Shrine indicator on the Minimap to display whether it will be a Mortar, Frost, or Arcane Shrine. Sky Temple The first Temple indicators will appear on the Minimap 30 seconds after the game begins, as well as 30 seconds after all Temples in the same event have been depleted. Towers of Doom The first Altar indicators will appear on the Minimap 30 seconds after the game begins, as well as 30 seconds after the final Altars in an event has been captured. Warhead Junction The first Warhead indicators will appear on the Minimap 30 seconds after the game begins, as well as 30 seconds after the final Warhead in an event has been collected. Regeneration Globes
      Regeneration Globes will now become neutral (claimable by both teams) if not claimed within 3 seconds. Time before Regeneration Globes expire has been reduced to 6 seconds. Structures
      All attacking structures no longer have ammunition. Walls will now be destroyed if their connected Towers and Gate are also destroyed. Walls can still be attacked normally. Tower vision range has been increased by 25% Tower damage to minions has been reduced by 25% Structures now have a warmup period of .5 seconds before firing and must face their targets completely Structure attack warning responsiveness has been significantly improved Standalone Towers (found next to Forts and Keeps) have been removed. The Health, granted Experience, and Damage of Standalone Towers has been redistributed into their surrounding gate Towers, Forts, and Keeps. Forts and Keeps now have True Sight, meaning they will reveal and attack Stealthed Heroes. True Sight is disabled while the Structure is disabled by effects such as the Raven Lord’s Curse or Sylvanas’ Black Arrow Trait. Minions
      Minion base damage has been increased by roughly 10% The 5 second delay before Minions spawn after the game begins has been removed. Mercenaries 
      Respawn Timers Mercenary Camps will now spawn 60 seconds after the game begins Siege Giant Camp Siege Defenders Defending Siege Giant attacks are now telegraphed on the terrain and can be dodged. Siege Laners Attack telegraphing and missile trajectory has been significantly improved. Hellbat Camp Respawn times have been doubled Hellbats will now prioritize structures Defender Hellbat Stats Base health increased by 125%, Health scaling increased by 200% Damage increased by 125% Damage scaling reduced by 50% Laner Hellbat Stats Base health increased by roughly 25% Health scaling increased by 43% Base damage increased by 50% Damage scaling decreased by 66% Damage taken from structures reduced by 50% Attacks now apply a 3-second stacking -5 Armor debuff to all targets, stacking up to 20 times (structures included) Knight Camp Wizard Knight Laner Wizard Knight Laner has a Spell Armor Aura Grants all nearby Allies (Minions, Mercenaries, and Heroes) 30 Spell Armor Spell Armor is immediately removed upon leaving the aura area. This Aura is destroyed when the Wizard is killed Wizard Knight Defender Grants nearby Knight Defenders a 15 Spell Armor aura This Aura is destroyed when the Wizard is killed Sapper Camp Sapper Defenders Now fire their attacks at target areas, instead of directly at Heroes. This behaves like the laning Sappers Sapper Explosion damage now scales over time Health scaling increased by 33% Respawn timer across all maps increased from 105 to 120 seconds Laning Sappers now have 100 Armor vs Structures while charging and Towers will ignore charging Sappers Art
      Heroes, Abilities, and Talents
      Zeratul has received updated art to coincide with Talent changes. Minimap
      Minimap art has been updated across all Battlegrounds. Stealth
      Added an overlay to indicate when a Stealthed character goes Invisible Added a new Stealth visual effect. Enemy Stealthed Heroes should now be easier to spot. Battlegrounds
      Sandbox Custom Game Improvements
      The following new cheats have been added to Sandbox Custom Games: Spawn Camps Respawn all Mercenary Camps. Spawn Dummy Creates a dialog allowing players to choose a type of dummy to spawn. Player can then click in the game world to create a dummy of the selected dummy type at mouse cursor position. One player cannot spawn more than 20 dummies. When a player deals damage or heals a target dummy the Target Dummy Panel will pop up displaying the damage or healing dealt. If player deals damage to multiple dummies with an AOE ability, the number will be the combination of damage done to all dummies. If the team hasn't dealt damage or healing to any of the dummies for 8 seconds, the Target Dummy Panel will disappear for that team. If a player hasn't dealt damage or healing to any of the dummies for 8 seconds, their damage and DPS will be reset to 0. Clear Dummies If the "Share Cheat" checkbox is unchecked, remove all the dummies created by all players. If the "Share Cheat" checkbox is checked, remove all the dummies created by that player. Toggle Fog of War Disabling Fog of War for a team will remove Fog of War, revealing the whole map for that team. Reset HP/MP If the "Share Cheat" checkbox is unchecked, reset all players' Health and Mana to full. If the "Share Cheat" checkbox is checked, reset the player's Health and Mana to full. Complete Quests If the "Share Cheat" checkbox is unchecked, complete all talent quests for all player. If the "Share Cheat" checkbox is checked, complete all talent quests for that player. Instant Respawn If the "Share Cheat" checkbox is unchecked, instantly respawn all dead Heroes. If the "Share Cheat" checkbox is checked, instantly respawn the player's Hero. Haunted Mines
      Issuing a Move command within the Mines while on the Battleground’s upper level, or vice versa, will now cause the Hero to use the Mine Entrance or Exit that is the shortest distance from the issued order. Summoned Grave Golem Fort and Keep attacks no longer reduce attack speed Will no longer interrupt its attacks mid-swing to use an Ability Now passes through player-created walls rather than stopping to destroy them Ranked Battleground Rotation Update
      Added to Rotation Warhead Junction Removed from Rotation Volskaya Foundry Garden of TerrorThe full Ranked Battleground Rotation is now as follows: Battlefield of Eternity Braxis Holdout Cursed Hollow Dragon Shire Infernal Shrines Sky Temple Tomb of the Spider Queen Towers of Doom Warhead Junction Design
      Stealth
      Stealth players will now become “Invisible” after remaining still for 1.5 seconds. Invisible Heroes will not display the Stealth visual effect and can still be removed from Stealth by taking damage. This includes Heroes under the effects of temporary Stealth effects such as Samuro’s Windwalk or Tyrande’s Shadowstalk. Additionally, Heroes cannot become Invisible while occupying a capture point, such as Braxis Holdout or Mercenary Camp Beacons. Instead, they will retain normal Stealth visual effects. User Interface
      In-Game UI
      General Hero portraits will now be displayed when heroes are inside the following Vehicles, Battleground objectives, or Hero Abilities: Dragon Knight Garden Terror Triglav Protector Anub'arak - Cocoon Lt. Morales – Medivac Dropship Stitches - Gorge Zagara - Devouring Maw Manual Talent Tier and Hero Status Callouts Players can now press ALT + left-click Hero portraits and the Team Level UI at the top of the screen to generate notifications for the following situations: Press ALT + left-click an ally’s Hero portrait to inform teammates when that ally needs assistance. ALT + left-clicking a dead Hero’s portrait will generate a chat message indicating that Hero’s remaining respawn time. ALT + left-clicking an enemy Hero portrait will ping that Hero’s location on the Minimap if they are within allied vision. If that enemy is outside of allied vision, a chat message will inform allies that the Hero is missing. Press ALT + right-click the Team Level UI to indicate when both teams are on even Talent tiers, or when one team has a Talent tier advantage over the other.  
      Heroes
      Assassin

      Nova

      Abilities
      Snipe (Q) Damage reduced from 310 to 255. Baseline quest added: Hitting an enemy Hero increases the damage of Snipe by 5% stacking 5 times. When at max stacks (5) it gains an additional 25% damage. If Snipe fails to hit a target, all stacks are lost. Pinning Shot (W) Damage from 110 to 105 Holo Decoy (E) Added functionality: Decoys now deal 10% of Nova’s damage Permanent Cloak (Trait) Added functionality: Gain 15% movement speed while Stealthed Triple Tap (R) Damage per shot from 338 to 372 (New) Ghost Protocol (1) Activate to instantly cloak, leave a Holo Decoy at your feet, and become unrevealable for .5 seconds. Talents
      Level 1 Advanced Cloaking (Trait) New functionality: Increase your Stealth movement speed by 5%. While Stealthed, gain 2 additional mana regeneration per second. Level 7 Snipe Master (Q) Removed Perfect Shot (Q) Moved from Level 16 Cooldown reduction on Hero hit reduced from 3 to 2 seconds Level 13 Psionic Efficiency (Q) Bonus range increased from 10 to 15% (New Talent) Ionic Force Field (Trait) Gain 25 Armor for 2 seconds after losing stealth Level 16 Lethal Decoy (E) Damage bonus from clones increased from 40 to 50% Level 20 (New Talent) Apollo Suit (Trait) Reduce the cooldown of Permanent Cloak from 3 to 1 second
      Samuro

      Stats
      Basic Attack damage increased from 88 to 110 Abilities
      Mirror Image (Q) Samuro will now appear in the direction of the player’s Mouse Cursor when Mirror Image is cast. Mirror Image damage is no longer a fraction of Samuro’s Attack Damage. Mirror Image base damage has been greatly reduced to 9. Mirror Images are no longer instantly destroyed by Structures Critical Strike (W) Cooldown increased from 8 to 10 seconds Illusion Master (R) New functionality: Reduce the cooldown of Advancing Strikes to 8 seconds Now increases the attack damage of Mirror Images by 100% Now also increases Samuro’s Basic Attack damage by 10% Image Transmission (Trait) Additional functionality: Activate to switch places with the target Mirror Image, removing most negative effects from Samuro and the target Mirror Image. 25-second cooldown. Talents
      Tooltips for various talents have been updated to reflect whether Samuro or his Mirror Images benefit from their effects Level 1 Way of the Wind (E) New Functionality: Gain 40% Movement Speed for 3 seconds upon entering or exiting Stealth by using Wind Walk Way of the Blade (W) No longer grants bonus Critical Strike damage Way of Illusion (Q) Mirror Images no longer benefit from this talent Level 4 One with the Wind (E) Armor gain now also lasts for 3 seconds after being revealed Mirror Images now also gain Armor Armor amount reduced from 60 to 30 Level 7 Phantom Pain (W) Mirror Images no longer benefit from this talent Crushing Blows (W) Mirror Images no longer benefit from this talent Bonus Critical Strike damage has been removed Additional functionality: Samuro’s Basic Attacks against enemy Heroes reduce the cooldown of Critical Strike by 1.5 seconds Level 13 Kawarimi (E) Reduced the time between Samuro issuing a new order after using Wind Walk and the image following it. It should now be harder for the new Image to follow Samuro’s new movements after using Wind Walk. Level 16 Press the Attack (Trait) Attack Speed bonus reduced from 15% to 10% per stack. Maximum bonus decreased from 60% to 40% Harsh Winds (E) Mirror Images no longer benefit from this talent Merciless Strikes (W) Mirror Images no longer benefit from this talent
      Valeera

      Abilities
      Vanish (D) Movement Speed increased from 10% to 20% Ambush (Q) If Valeera is Vanished for 3 seconds, this ability has 5 range and teleports Valeera behind her target. Damage reduced from 180 to 130 Now also reduces enemy Armor by 10 for 4 seconds Cheap Shot (W) Stun duration reduced from 1.25 to .75 seconds Now Blinds the target for 2 seconds after the stun effect ends If Valeera is Vanished for 3 seconds, this ability has 5 range and teleports Valeera behind her target Garrote (E) Silence duration increased from 2.25 to 2.75 seconds If Valeera is Vanished for 3 seconds, this ability has 5 range and teleports Valeera behind her target Talents
      Level 1 Subtlety (D) Adjusted functionality: Now triggers when Valeera teleports to her target with Ambush, Cheap Shot, and Garrote. Energy return reduced from 10 to 8 per second. Crippling Poison (Active) Slow duration reduced from 5 to 4 seconds. Valeera’s poison is no longer removed after the first damaging Ability, but instead is applied by all Valeera's Abilities for 4 seconds. This duration does not start until Valeera damages her first enemy. Level 4 Wound Poison (Active) Healing reduction duration decreased from 5 to 4 seconds Valeera’s poison is no longer removed after the first damaging Ability, but instead is applied by all Valeera's Abilities for 4 seconds. This duration does not start until Valeera damages her first enemy Level 7 Slice and Dice (E) Valeera's Basic Attacks now restore 2 Energy. Level 13 Death from Above (Q) New functionality: Ambush reduces the cooldown of Vanish by 4 seconds. Blind (W) Now increases the duration of Cheap Shot’s Blind from 2 to 4 seconds. Strangle (E) Spell Power reduction increased from 25% to 40% Duration reduced from 7 to 6 seconds Level 16 Assassinate (Q) Bonus damage reduced from 100% to 50% Now also increases the Armor reduction of Ambush by 10 when the target is isolated. Moved from level 7 Expose Armor (E) Removed. Level 20 Nightslayer (D) Removed. Rupture (D) Damage bonus now stacks immediately to 100%, instead of stacking up to 30%. Moved from level 16 Elusiveness (D) Moved from Level 13 Movement Speed bonus increased from 10% to 20% LEVEL (TIER) VALEERA TALENTS 1 (1) (!) Vigor (Passive) Subtlety (D) Combat Readiness (Passive) Crippling Poison (Active) 4 (2) Relentless Strikes (Q) Hemorrhage (E) Initiative (D) Wound Poison (Active) 7 (3) Mutilate (Q) (!) Fatal Finesse (W) Slice and Dice (E)   10 (4) Smoke Bomb (R) Cloak of Shadows (R) — — 13 (5) Death from Above (Q) Blind (W) Strangle (E)   16 (6) Seal Fate (Q) Assassinate (Q) Thistle Tea (Active)   20 (7) Adrenaline Rush (R) Enveloping Shadows (R) Rupture (E) Elusiveness (D) (!) indicates a Questing Talent. Italic text indicates a NEW Talent. Underlined text indicates a MOVED Talent.
      Valla

      Abilities
      Level 1 Monster Hunter (Q) Now tracks stacks instead of damage on the quest tracker
      Zeratul

      Abilities
      Shadow Assault (R) Removed (New Talent) Might of the Nerazim (R) Passive: After using an Ability, Zeratul’s next Basic Attack within 6 seconds deals 40% more damage Activate to duplicate the last ability cast. Damaging abilities deal 50% less damage. This ability does not benefit from talents. 20-Second Cooldown  Talents
      Level 1 Vorpal Blade (1) Added as a baseline ability. Default Hotkey: 1 (New Talent) Move Unseen (Passive) Gain 25% bonus Movement Speed while Stealthed Shadow Hunter (E) Regen Globe required for quest completion reduced from 20 to 15 Mana cost reduction of Blink increased from 2 to 3 Level 4 Combo Slash (Passive) Removed Grim Task (Passive) Removed (New Talent) Psionic Strength (Passive) Damaging an enemy Hero with Basic Attacks or Abilities increases Zeratul's damage by 6% for 3 seconds, stacking up to 5 times. (New Talent) Darkness Descends (Active) Passive: Increase Zeratul’s attack speed by 10%. Activated ability – Zeratul gains 40% bonus attack speed for 5 seconds. 30-second cooldown Level 7 Wormhole (E) Duration increased from 2 to 3 seconds Slip into Shadow (E) Removed (New Talent) Warp Skirmisher (1) Vorpal Blade now has 2 charges. Casting Vorpal Blade also causes Zeratul's next Basic Attack within 6 seconds to deal 30% bonus damage Level 16 Sentenced to Death (W) Bonus damage reduced from 40 to 30% Level 20 Rewind (Active) Removed Nerazim Fury (R) Removed (New Talent) Twilight Falls (R) Activating Might of the Nerazim resets the cooldown of all of Zeratul’s Basic Abilities (New Talent) Shadow Mending (Passive) Zeratul heals himself for 75% of Ability Damage Dealt to enemy Heroes LEVEL (TIER) ZERATUL TALENTS 1 (1) PH PH PH PH 4 (2) PH PH PH PH 7 (3) PH PH PH PH 10 (4) PH PH — — 13 (5) PH PH PH PH 16 (6) PH PH PH PH 20 (7) PH PH PH PH (!) indicates a Questing Talent. Italic text indicates a NEW Talent. Underlined text indicates a MOVED Talent. Specialist

      Abathur

      Abilities
      Spawn Locust (Trait) Health increased from 288 to 316  Talents
      Level 1 Survival Instincts (Trait) Bonus Health decreased from 50% to 40% Level 7 Calldown: MULE (Active) No longer refills Structure ammo
      The Lost Vikings

      Talents
      Level 4 It’s a Sabotage! (Passive) No longer removes Structure ammo Damage increased from 27 to 35 Warrior

      Muradin

      Talents
      Level 4 Sledgehammer (Q) No longer removes Ammo from structures Collection
      Hero Price Reduction
      Artanis’ prices have been reduced to 7,000 Gold and 625 Gems. New Bundles – The following new Bundles and Skin Packs are available for a limited time!
      Hanzo Heroic Bundle Winter Veil 2017 Bundle Winter Veil Classic Bundle New Announcers
      Hanzo New Skins
      Hanzo Kinoko Honzo Sora Hanzo Dragon Hanzo Demon Hanzo Farstrider Hanzo Icebound Farstrider Hanzo Iron Farstrider Hanzo Holy Farstrider Hanzo Scarlet Farstrider Hanzo Genji Storm Oni Genji Golden Genji Nihon Genji Leoric Immortal Space Lord Leoric Lúcio Azure Soundblast Lúcio Lunara Harvest Champion Lunara Zarya Citrine Thunderguard Zarya Industrial Zarya New Mounts
      The following Mounts have been awarded to players who reached Platinum in Hero League or Bronze in Team League during 2017 Ranked Season 3: Titanium Cybersteed Carbon Cybersteed Master Cybersteed The following Mounts have been awarded to players who reached Master or higher in Hero League or Team League during 2017 Ranked Season 3: Epic Titanium Cybersteed Epic Carbon Cybersteed Epic Master Cybersteed Bug Fixes
      General
      Fixed a number of typo and tooltip errors across several aspects of the game. Art
      Kharazim: Kharazim's arms and upper body now animated correctly during his dizzy animation. Leoric: The Shroud of the Dead King Talent will now correctly play an animation and a sound when activated. Samuro: Monkey King Samuro’s model will no longer exhibit flickering during Hero Select while running Medium or High graphic settings. The Lost Vikings: Fixed an issue causing Baelog to cast superfluous shadows on the terrain. Battlegrounds
      Sky Temple: Fixed an issue that could prevent Temple lasers from appearing correctly on the Minimap. Structures: Auriel's Blinding Flash and Artanis' Suppression Pulse can no longer Blind Structures. Towers of Doom: The Headless Horseman Boss is no longer incorrectly categorized as a Monster. Volskaya Foundry: Fixed an issue in which Heroes on the outer edge of the Hall of Storms would not receive Healing or protection. Heroes, Abilities, and Talents
      Alexstrasza: Life-Binder is no longer interrupted when entering or exiting Dragonqueen. Diablo: Fixed an issue that could cause Shadow Charge to deal its collision damage multiple times under certain circumstances. Garrosh: Casting Wrecking Ball on Mercenaries will no longer cause them to leash while in combat. Gul'dan: Movement caused by a conveyor belt will no longer cancel Rain of Destruction channeling. Kel'thuzad: The Power of Icecrown Talent will now correctly grant bonus Spell Power for enemy Heroes Slowed by Chains of Kel’Thuzad with the Chains of Ice Talent. Li-Ming: Zei's Vengeance and Arcane Orb tooltips have been updated to clarify bonus damage functionality. Damage amounts have not been changed. Lt. Morales: The Second Opinion Talent will now correctly grant cooldown reduction when one of the Heroes struck by Displacement Grenade is piloting a Vehicle, like the Garden Terror. Lunara: Fixed an inconsistency that allowed Lunara to cast Leaping Strike over some, but not all, allied units after learning Boundless Stride. Medivh: Creating a Portal entrance after learning Portal Mastery and then entering the Triglav Protector will no longer prevent him from using the Protector’s abilities. Muradin: Learning Reverberation no longer incorrectly updates the Attack Speed Slow amount in Thunder Clap’s tooltip. Murky: Spawn Egg with the Egg Hunt Talent can now be cast correctly on Volskaya Foundry’s conveyor belts. User Interface
      Death Recap: Fortification Camp Turret attacks now display a Turret icon in the Death Recap screen.