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Whitemane Meta Tier List (August 2018)

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Our twenty-second Heroes of the Storm Meta Tier list for the month of August is here!

We present our twenty-second Heroes of the Storm Meta Tier List for the month of August 2018.

Welcome to Icy Veins's belated Meta Tier List for the August 22 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). 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

Spoiler

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. The (ban) comment is a ban recommendation; Meta heroes should be picked and banned first, though heroes from other groups should be considered as well depending on how team compositions are shaping up.

If you're newer to the game, also consider visiting our glossary for a comprehensive list of discrete Heroes of the Storm terms.

 

Current ranked mode map rotation

 
  • Alterac Pass
  • Battlefield of Eternity
  • Braxis Holdout
  • Cursed Hollow
  • Dragon Shire
  • Infernal Shrines
  • Sky Temple
  • Tomb of the Spider Queen
  • Towers of Doom
  • Volskaya Foundry

 

Meta picks

Tank Bruiser Fighter Stalker Marksman Mage Support Healer
      Genji (ban) Raynor (ban)  Azmodan (ban)     

 

High-tier generalists

Tank Bruiser Fighter Stalker Marksman Mage Support Healer
Diablo (ban) Dehaka (ban)     Cassia Jaina   Deckard (ban)
Garrosh (ban) Sonya     Fenix (ban) Kael'thas   Li Li
Johanna Yrel (ban)     Sgt.Hammer (ban)     Malfurion
Muradin             Whitemane (new)(ban)
VarianTaunt(ban)              

 

Mid-tier generalists

Tank Bruiser Fighter Stalker Marksman Mage Support Healer
Anub'arak Artanis Alarak Tracer (ban) Greymane Gul'dan Abathur Alexstrasza
Arthas   Maiev Zeratul Hanzo (ban) Junkrat   Ana
Blaze   Malthael   Lunara Kel'Thuzad   Auriel
E.T.C. (ban)   Ragnaros   Tychus  Li-Ming   Kharazim
Stitches (ban)   Thrall   Zul'jin Nazeebo   Rehgar
    VarianColossus Smash     Sylvanas   Stukov
    VarianTwin Blades of Fury     Zagara    
    Zarya          

 

Low-tier generalists

Tank Bruiser Fighter Stalker Marksman Mage Support Healer
  Chen Gazlowe Valeera Falstad Chromie↓↓ Medivh Brightwing
  D.Va Murky   Tyrande Probius   Lt. Morales
    The Butcher   Valla     Lúcio

 

Situational picks (map, team composition, or counterpick)

Tank Bruiser Fighter Stalker Marksman Mage Support Healer
Cho'gall (ban) Leoric Illidan Nova The Lost Vikings (ban) Cho'gall (ban) Tassadar Uther (ban)
Tyrael Rexxar Kerrigan Samuro        
    Xul          

 

Meta heroes define the  They are very often banned or picked right away, as they generally dictate the pace of most drafts and matches.

Generalists form the core of your team and are generally picked after Meta picks have been distributed. They tend to work on most maps, and as part of and against most team compositions. Since this group includes most heroes, I elected to split it into three tiers. High-tier rankings are a result of performance (i.e. win rates) and popularity (i.e. pick and ban rates). This means that heroes with high win rates can be set in low tier; the opposite may also be true.

Situational picks shine on specific maps or as part of specific team compositions.

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My profile says I play butcher,Illidan,cho(gall), more than other heroes..

And yes I can say they're Situational picks...they can be best if people know how to play them..for example when I pick them(specially Cho and butcher) I always think about getting mvp since I'm almost sure that we will win the game ( i have about 70-90% winrate for them) and most of times I see people can't play these 3 well (low skill+non meta hero=...)

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Interesting to see stukov and Alex decline like this.  I guess sustain and HoT is king right now when burst is lower?

I'm also coming to the conclusion than Ana is being slept on.

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2 hours ago, shanghaied said:

Interesting to see stukov and Alex decline like this.  I guess sustain and HoT is king right now when burst is lower?

I'm also coming to the conclusion than Ana is being slept on.

I strongly believe Ana is High Tier material. I think what probably bars her from being High Tier is her skill ceiling and being dependant on positioning more than any other healer in the game.

Edited by Valhalen

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Well, the more mobile characters become the less accurate she is. Can easily be prevented from healing he ones who need it by teammates. She's amazing when she works though.

There are a couple occasions where I grab something other than Azmodan to provide support or tanking or a different Assassin on Haunted Mines, bur other tgan that, Azmodan is extremely reliable.

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6 hours ago, shanghaied said:

I'm also coming to the conclusion than Ana is being slept on.

Can't say I find myself feeling the same as you or Valhalen.  Ana requires a high level of skill and/or team coordination to get the same pay out you get for almost no effort with a character like Li Li.  If her healing (or damage, or utility, ect...) was great given the level of effort to achieve it, that would be one thing.  Sadly it's just not.  She has some other utility of course (her grenade and dart are both decent, her ults are only so-so) and she did receive a massive buff recently with her dot affecting structures (prior to that she was easily my outright least favorite character in the game) but when you hold her performance next to Deckard or the other high (or even mid tier) healers?  It's no contest in my mind.

Edited by KSDT

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I don't think it's Ana being bad that lowers her tier so much, but how hard it is to get any mileage out of her. Compare it to Li Li with just "hold Q to get value". Rehgar, Stukov amd Alexstrasza are also all much easier to play than Ana and can get a lot of healing out. I struggle heavily with Deckard Cain but I think that's a combination of problems that all reside between chair and keyboard (I am not very good with him, and adding to that my teammates are not good enough to follow up on the Roots Deckard provides because lol Silver).

But Ana... I know she's good if you can get her to work, but... usually an Ana pick is begging for a disaster.

Edit: This all being said, Ana can get a lot of healing out, and if you are just that good on her she may very well contend for the position of best healer in the game. The problem is that you have to be that good and the road to that point strikes me as long and painful.

Edited by Aasgier

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azmo needs a big nerf ....

 

i started to pick him up after the rework and i am still sitting at a 80% winrate

he is too ez to play and does way to much dmg

 

if you dont beat him at the start of the game, you never beat him, at lvl 16+ he deals almost 1k dmg with his orb, thats just way to much

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I think what makes Ana strong is her ability to essentially deny healing from enemy healer or even self-sustain; at the right time, it can be devastating and turn the game around.

And I'll once again "complain" about ma boiz Fenix and Tyrael (JUSTICE for the Archangel of Justice!) being lower than they should (imho)

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11 hours ago, KSDT said:

Can't say I find myself feeling the same as you or Valhalen.  Ana requires a high level of skill and/or team coordination to get the same pay out you get for almost no effort with a character like Li Li.  If her healing (or damage, or utility, ect...) was great given the level of effort to achieve it, that would be one thing.  Sadly it's just not.  She has some other utility of course (her grenade and dart are both decent, her ults are only so-so) and she did receive a massive buff recently with her dot affecting structures (prior to that she was easily my outright least favorite character in the game) but when you hold her performance next to Deckard or the other high (or even mid tier) healers?  It's no contest in my mind.

The thing is that Ana has the power to counter pretty much every healer in the game (mainly because of Biotic GrenadeBiotic Grenade), as the flexibility of her talent tree is one of the best in the game (aside from the Shrike build, which is garbage). In a Double Support composition (which will probably be viable again with the recent Tyrande rework), she can roll with the Biotic GrenadeBiotic Grenade for some nasty healing; I personally love using this build when I have a Medivh in my team with ReabsorptionReabsorption.

If you take Ana's performance facing a team that features Deckard or Malfurion, her massive range on her Healing DartHealing Dart allows her to stay safe from their CCs, and can repeteadly cleanse Horadric CubeHoradric CubeScroll Of SealingScroll Of Sealing and Entangling RootsEntangling Roots with Purifying DartsPurifying Darts. In fact, one of the reasons I rank Ana high personally is because of her level 13 talents that allows her to counter most crowd control (Smelling SaltsSmelling Salts is fantastic if you have a good timing).

If she is facing Alexstrasza or Rehgar, she can just lob a Biotic GrenadeBiotic Grenade on the very telegraphed AbundanceAbundance and Ancestral HealingAncestral Healing to negate healing. Heck, with the right timing she can even negate Divine PalmDivine Palm.

But like I said, what bars her from being a Top Tier is her skill level, plus she is absurdly vulnerable to dives. She is more situational than the top tier Healers at the moment, but she can really shine in the right hands. I've been in matches where my Healing DartHealing Dart was healing over 1k, thanks to the combination of Purifying DartsPurifying Darts and Concentrated DosesConcentrated Doses. When you consider the low cooldown on the dart, that is a lot of healing output.

Edited by Valhalen
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The thing that's keeping Ana from being higher is somewhat similar to Tyrande problem that was fixed with rework that was fixed with rework, her talent tiers are in wrong place. You need to wait until 13 to finally increases potency of your healing, 16 to finish it.

Her powerspikes before 10 are level 7 with Mind-Numbing AgentMind-Numbing Agent and Debilitating DartDebilitating Dart, her level 1s are only good when done and level 4 is whatever mostly.

Edited by SleepySheepy

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I hear what you guys are saying about Ana, but I really think her power boils down to 2 parts.

1. Does she have good peels on her team?  She doesnt have a hard escape mechanism other than her dart, so it is important to have some disengage available to her if she needs it.  This point is pretty true for most supports with a few exceptions.

2. Can she hit her skillshots?  A good Ana has to consistently hit max range healing darts to really get the most value out of her kit: she has one of the longest range effective heals (maybe longest?) which means she can maintain a safer position during teamfights.   This isnt easy and really just relies on the mechanical skill of the player.

If the Ana player has these two things I think her kit is flexible and powerful enough to make her a top pick.   And it's not hard to make a couple picks that enable her in at least the first category.

Edit: basically what you guys already said lol.

Edited by shanghaied
Removing stupid
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12 hours ago, SleepySheepy said:

I'm bit intrigued by Hammer being placed in generalist segment.
Isn't her design catering to specific draft, in other words, situational pick?

I guess Hammer falls in the category of a last pick, much like other Heroes such as Zul'jin, The Butcher, etc. If the enemy team doesn't see it coming nor draft any counters, Hammer can be a great last pick, specially if the entire team is built to fight in her range.

That doesn't really answer your question, as I am confused as well why she is ranked so high, but I'd say that with the meta slowly shifting to sustained damage she is really starting to shine; if you can't reach her, she will pretty much obliterate everything.

Also, with the recent rework (read "massive nerf") to Chromie, who was one of the best counters to Hammer, she is free to pew pew as she wishes. Even though Chromie herself was a situational pick, she was a strong counter to Hammer (well, she still is, but not as powerful).

Edited by Valhalen

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Remember @Oxygen said his list is based on 'popularity' and 'win rate' in his last tier list. Ana's high difficulty to be played well makes her nigh impossible to achieve that. Also, Genji being still on Meta Tier doesn't help her either.

Azmodan is WAY overtuned right now. Even more than Raynor before the recent nerfs. He's as frustrating to play against as pre-reworked (read:nerfed) Chromie.

Hammer is currently very oppressive: there're very little ways to stop her if she has a solid frontline.

I don't think Malfurion can compete with Whitemane and Deckard currently. 

Fenix cannot rise any higher when Raynor currently overshadows every other Marksman.

Edited by ShadowerDerek

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8 hours ago, ShadowerDerek said:

Remember @Oxygensaid his list is based on 'popularity' and 'win rate' in his last tier list. Ana's high difficulty to be played well makes her nigh impossible to achieve that. Also, Genji being still on Meta Tier doesn't help her either.

Azmodan is WAY overtuned right now. Even more than Raynor before the recent nerfs. He's as frustrating to play against as pre-reworked (read:nerfed) Chromie.

Hammer is currently very oppressive: there're very little ways to stop her if she has a solid frontline.

I don't think Malfurion can compete with Whitemane and Deckard currently. 

Yrel and Raynor are both overtuned as well. Yrel is unkillable and deals a shitload of damage, and even with the nerfs Raynor still is too oppressing for an easy to use Basic Attack Hero.

Edited by Valhalen

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Hi, would it be possible to uniform the spread sheet columns size? feels weird to read the list and having to zig zag around trying to figure things out and then in High-tier generalists Fight Stalker feels like just one role

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On 9/1/2018 at 11:14 PM, Valhalen said:

 I guess Hammer falls in the category of a last pick, much like other Heroes such as Zul'jin, The Butcher, etc. If the enemy team doesn't see it coming nor draft any counters, Hammer can be a great last pick, specially if the entire team is built to fight in her range.

 That doesn't really answer your question, as I am confused as well why she is ranked so high, but I'd say that with the meta slowly shifting to sustained damage she is really starting to shine; if you can't reach her, she will pretty much obliterate everything.

Also, with the recent rework (read "massive nerf") to Chromie, who was one of the best counters to Hammer, she is free to pew pew as she wishes. Even though Chromie herself was a situational pick, she was a strong counter to Hammer (well, she still is, but not as powerful).

I think the *real* problem is that Blizzard is trying so hard to balance out all heroes, certain heroes have all but lost their identity.

Take Chromie: Her entire thing was outranging everyone and being able to safely blow up one target with relative ease.  But in exchange, she dies pretty much instantly to any dive comp.  But now?  She doesn't have the necessary burst to fill the role she is SUPPOSED to be made for.

Someone needs to inform Blizzard that it's *ok* to have heroes that are overpowered against certain comps.  It's also OK to have heroes that are niche picks for certain builds/counters.  All these hero re-works are just resulting in more long-term balance issues.  Blizzard just needs to stop for a second and define the role that each specific hero is supposed to uniquely fill, then balance from there.

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@Oxygen While I REALLY enjoy those monthly lists, posting a list without the actual explanation is a little frustrating to me. I do not  play HL very often and I'm silver/ gold anyway, so the rise and fall of tiers is not apparent to me. So truth be told, only after you post the additional comments, I can fully "comprehend" your work. In other terms - I'd rather wait a day or two (or whatever it takes you) to post the full list, than get the 'raw grades'. You know, just food for thought 😉

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3 hours ago, gamerk2 said:

I think the *real* problem is that Blizzard is trying so hard to balance out all heroes, certain heroes have all but lost their identity.

Take Chromie: Her entire thing was outranging everyone and being able to safely blow up one target with relative ease.  But in exchange, she dies pretty much instantly to any dive comp.  But now?  She doesn't have the necessary burst to fill the role she is SUPPOSED to be made for.

Someone needs to inform Blizzard that it's *ok* to have heroes that are overpowered against certain comps.  It's also OK to have heroes that are niche picks for certain builds/counters.  All these hero re-works are just resulting in more long-term balance issues.  Blizzard just needs to stop for a second and define the role that each specific hero is supposed to uniquely fill, then balance from there.

Another problem is that Blizzard listen to the playerbase when they're not supposed to; there were tons of threads in the official forums complaining over and over and over about Chromie being "too frustrating to play against" and then they went and dropped that massive nerf calling it a rework. They did the same thing to Diablo, when he was fun to use (now just being another generic tank).

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Well, Dibbles had a very awful talent tree pre-rework, so that needed to be fixed. I can't say I'm happy with his current state, but it's mostly just a numbers problem now (having the highest damage output, highest survivability and some of the best initiation tools for a tank... well).

Chromie indeed got gutted and while she needed a rework, I still hate facing her because they left Time Loop in her kit, which I hated far more than being unable to see her W.

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4 hours ago, Aasgier said:

Chromie indeed got gutted and while she needed a rework, I still hate facing her because they left Time Loop in her kit, which I hated far more than being unable to see her W.

There are so many ways to counter Time Loop that the majority of Chromie mains I know rarely pick it. You have so many Heroes with mobility in their kits that can outright dodge it that Slowling Sands ends up being more useful.

I hate fighting Chromie as well, but they completely destroyed her; she current sits at the second lowest winrate in the entire game, after Tassadar.

On a side note, how does Probius currently sits at the highest winrate in the game? Sure, I know that heroes with low playrate and popularity often have considerably high winrate because the few ones that play them are pros, however I can't even see him being viable in the meta.

image.thumb.png.84c3e7a7d07fc1a1fcd8b4b787b835d4.png

Edited by Valhalen

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3 hours ago, Valhalen said:

There are so many ways to counter Time Loop that the majority of Chromie mains I know rarely pick it. You have so many Heroes with mobility in their kits that can outright dodge it that Slowling Sands ends up being more useful.

I hate fighting Chromie as well, but they completely destroyed her; she current sits at the second lowest winrate in the entire game, after Tassadar.

On a side note, how does Probius currently sits at the highest winrate in the game? Sure, I know that heroes with low playrate and popularity often have considerably high winrate. But I can't even see him being viable in the meta.

I agree Slowing Sands is better than Time Loop, but Time Loop is more annoying because I always have teammates that are hard countered by it 😞 . It is one heck of a bullshit ult that (as a Support main) made me afraid to draft anything that wasn't a Cleanse Support early in the draft if she wasn't banned out.

I agree, which is why I said I would have changed her TIme Loop and Time Trap and probably Bronze Talons, instead of what they did to her with her current rework.

As for Probius, there's a handful of Probius mains that basically wins 80% of their games with him and they  are responsible for most of the Probius winrate I feel. He's been pretty consistent at 60% from what I know.

Edited by Aasgier

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3 hours ago, Valhalen said:

There are so many ways to counter Time Loop that the majority of Chromie mains I know rarely pick it. You have so many Heroes with mobility in their kits that can outright dodge it that Slowling Sands ends up being more useful.

 

29 minutes ago, Aasgier said:

I agree Slowing Sands is better than Time Loop, but Time Loop is more annoying because I always have teammates that are hard countered by it 😞 . It is one heck of a bullshit ult that (as a Support main) made me afraid to draft anything that wasn't a Cleanse Support early in the draft if she wasn't banned out.

I have always preferred Slowing SandsSlowing Sands too, but I feel that people's overall distaste to Temporal LoopTemporal Loop is exaggerated. At the very least it is more skill dependent and more "counterable" then PyroblastPyroblast, for example. Not only you can CleanseCleanse or stasis (Crystal AegisCrystal Aegis, Ice BlockIce Block) out of it, but people forget that you can disrupt her aim or block her path. I have even played as D.Va once just to counter it, both rushing and bodyblocking her and using Defense MatrixDefense Matrix. I don't think it is too much to have a "instant delete" ult that requires R+W+Q, timing and positioning to pull off correctly.

3 hours ago, Valhalen said:

On a side note, how does Probius currently sits at the highest winrate in the game? Sure, I know that heroes with low playrate and popularity often have considerably high winrate because the few ones that play them are pros, however I can't even see him being viable in the meta.

Never underestimate the cute death machine.

 

Edited by lChronosl

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20 minutes ago, lChronosl said:

 

I have always preferred Slowing SandsSlowing Sands too, but I feel that people's overall distaste to Temporal LoopTemporal Loop is exaggerated. At the very least it is more skill dependent and more "counterable" then PyroblastPyroblast, for example. Not only you can CleanseCleanse or stasis (Crystal AegisCrystal Aegis, Ice BlockIce Block) out of it, but people forget that you can disrupt her aim or block her path. I have even played as D.Va once just to counter it, both rushing and bodyblocking her and using Defense MatrixDefense Matrix. I don't think it is too much to have a "instant delete" ult that requires R+W+Q, timing and positioning to pull off correctly

True, there are a number of ways to counter Temporal Loop.

Personally, I would just have removed Bronze Talons and replace it with a different talent, adjust Chromie's Q stacking (Chromie's Q would be better overall, just less obnoxious when you have a teammate feeding the Chromie stacks). Time Trap received the change I wanted (could be targeted by melee heroes) but I would make them spotted if you spend 1,5 seconds standing still within a distance of 6 meters from them.

As for Time Loop, I'd replace it with a new ult of some kind. Maybe this is where Bronze Talons would find its new home.

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      Blizzard fixed the Loot Chest display issue and Qhira's Fatal Wounds no longer cause Blood Rage to deal bonus damage to enemies with less than 5 stacks.
      Blizzard (Source)
      We’ve just released a Heroes of the Storm patch in order to address a few live bugs. Read on for details.
      Bug Fixes
      Heroes
      Qhira Fatal Wounds no longer causes Blood Rage to deal bonus damage to enemies that have less than 5 stacks. Fatal Wounds no longer causes the activated portion of Blood Rage to deal bonus damage. User Interface
      Ranked: Post-game point breakdown animation now properly counts up or down. Season names now properly display in order on the Profile. Fixed an issue where Blizzard Checkout could fail to load when purchasing Gems. The Loot Chest award animation no longer improperly displays two Loot Chests granted when a Hero Levels and a quest is completed within the same game.
    • By Stan
      Heroes of the Storm is currently experiencing an issue with Loot Chests. The display issue causes players to see more Loot Chests than they were supposed to receive, but it's important to note that you're not missing Loot Chests because this is just a purely cosmetic bug that does not affect the total number of acquired Loot Chests.
      Blizzard (Source)
      Hey everyone!
      We’ve gotten a lot of reports regarding Loot Chests and I wanted to take a moment to respond here. We are currently aware of a display issue that is causing the Loot Chest popup to show that you were granted more chests than you were supposed to receive. It is important to note - you are not missing a Loot Chest, this is purely a display issue and does not impact the total number of Loot Chests you receive.
      Since we introduced Loot Chests and our new Progression system in Heroes 2.0, leveling up a Hero will grant different types of Loot Chests with increasing rarity depending on your player level. For each level hit, players will earn 1 Common Loot Chest, every 5 levels will then grant a Rare Loot Chest, and every 25 levels will finally unlock an Epic Loot Chest. For every 10 levels you earn for a specific Hero you will earn a Hero Specific Loot Chest for that Hero. With the exception of Special Events, Hero Specific Chests are one of the only ways to get more than 1 Loot Chest per level.
      With the information above, if you are seeing the wrong type of chest awarded, or a Hero Specific Chest not being granted, this would be a different issue than the display issue mentioned above. Please make a post on our Forums and we can investigate these reports further. Before posting please make sure to provide the following information:
      Make sure to check the Loot tab. If you have more than three types of Loot Chests, use the arrows to turn the carousel and confirm the chest is missing. Please include the Account Level, the Hero you leveled, and what level the Hero got. Thank you so much for your help!
      Huginncord
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