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Introducing Nexus Anomalies

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Nexus Anomalies are game modifiers coming to the game soon and the very first anomaly comes in the form of Experience Globes.

The team has been hard at work to make gathering experience more intuitive and fun as new players often underestimate the importance of picking up globes, so they came up with Experience Globes.

These will spawn from defeated Minions and gathering them will give your team Experience. The whole thing can be compared to Butcher picking up meat for his quests.

The plan is to release Nexus Anomalies alongside each new Ranked season, but if one works really well, it may be permanently implemented into the game.

Blizzard LogoBlizzard (Source)

Senior game designer Alex Neyman’s excitement about Experience Globes is obvious in the way he moves his hands. First they’re in the air, outlining shapes as he speaks; then they’re karate-chopping the table to emphasize a point. He’s talking about the massive armies of minions that often materialize in late-game Heroes of the Storm, and how Experience Globes make vaporizing those stacked-up waves more satisfying than ever.

“It used to be a little bit of a chore,” says Neyman. “But now, you’re like, oh! Honestly, psychologically, it feels so good to see all those minions die and all the globes go—”

(He makes a sound effect along the lines of “shwoop shwoop shwoop,” and mimes picking up Experience Globes with his fingers.)

Nine months ago, the Heroes of the Storm development team began experimenting with ways to make gathering experience more intuitive and fun. That exploration culminated in Experience Globes, the first in a series of seasonal gameplay updates called Nexus Anomalies. Experience Globes work similarly to the Regeneration Globes already found in-game: Instead of automatically granting experience, defeated minions will now leave behind globes that you can collect—with a generous pickup radius—to contribute to your team’s collective total.

NEXUS ANOMALIES: MAJOR GAMEPLAY UPDATES TO ACCOMPANY EVERY RANKED SEASON

Experience Globes are a fundamental change to a core part of the game, and that’s no accident. Big changes like this are exactly what the team hopes to test out with Nexus Anomalies, which are currently planned for release alongside each new Ranked season.

“We’re always trying to improve or enhance the game,” Neyman says. “Nexus Anomalies give us the opportunity to try mechanics that might be a little risky.” 

These experimental mechanics will typically only last for the season in which they’re introduced. But if a Nexus Anomaly works really well, and players like it, the team may make it a permanent part of the game. Neyman believes this will probably be the case with Experience Globes, which have felt highly rewarding in testing.

“Experience is really important,” Neyman says, “but its value isn’t always apparent for new or even experienced players.” 

Like the rest of the Heroes development team, Neyman’s love for the game is evident when he discusses it. He’s been on the team for six years, since before Heroes of the Storm entered Alpha. He plays constantly, testing internally, but also on the live server. He likes solo queue because building a team out of five strangers, each of whom brings something unique to the table, reminds him of pickup basketball, another of his favorite pastimes.

“When it works—having great teamwork out of nowhere—it’s a really great feeling,” Neyman says.

One of the ways to make that cohesion happen more consistently in Heroes of the Storm is to ensure that players are on the same page about what’s important to win the game.

“We want to make sure that the optimal way to play is also the most fun way to play,” Neyman says.

That’s a driving force behind Experience Globes. Neyman cites internal statistics about split-push or side-lane Heroes tending to have a higher-than-average winrate because their mechanics encourage what he calls “macro gameplay.”

“If one or two players do this on your team, you have a huge advantage, because your team is getting more powerful,” Neyman says. “You’re getting more experience. You’re keeping your lanes pushed.”

It’s not always optimal to prioritize macro gameplay over everything else—it’s important to help your team conquer objectives and prevail in teamfights, for instance—but on average, Heroes players tend to underestimate the value of gathering experience.

That makes Experience Globes a two-for-one opportunity. Not only do they make a core part of the game—gathering experience—more satisfying and visceral; they also help players align on the importance of doing so, leading to better coordination and—hopefully—more games that feel like a good session of pickup basketball.

Another nice effect of Experience Globes is that leveling up finally makes sense from a narrative perspective.

“Why is it that I kill this random soldier and I suddenly get stronger?” Neyman says. “The idea now is that there’s this Nexus energy that you go and pick up, and that makes you more powerful.” 

That’s right: by defeating enemy Heroes and clearing minion waves, you’re tapping into the boundless energies that roil and thunder within the Nexus, multidimensional currents that wrest realms in and out of existence like a deranged swarm of cosmic fireflies. As you extract the very life essence from the corpses of your foes, your powers grow, until they become so vast that none can stand against you. . . .

(Shwoop shwoop shwoop.)

TRY EXPERIENCE GLOBES, LIVE NOW ON PTR!

We’re really excited about this new mechanic, and about the Nexus Anomalies to come. Read the full patch notes here, and try out Experience Globes on the PTR today!

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I liek the idea of this, trying things out in "brawl modes" and if it is well liked then they will add it to the main game.
Experience orbs sadly seem a bit more balanced towards melee characters over ranged... As having to run in to collect the orbs already as ranged is annoying, since it puts you forcefully into melee.

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I am honestly liking the exp orb changes. Yeah, it kinda sucks that you need to stay close to the minion as it dies to get exp, specially with some heroes such as Lunara, Nazeebo, Azmo, Jaina, Hammer and Murky. But at the same time it finally creates an useful advantage to melee heroes. And it will slow down lane rotations some, which I think it's a good change, specially to new and/or slower players.

Obviously this would not suit a competitive environment, but IMO all those changes that move away from high level mastery of the game are good for it's life expectancy overall.

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consider as nerf to azmo.

Most of the time, azmo can get exp from 2 lane. 1 with azmo hero and another one with trait unit.

Now do this unit still able to get the exp?

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Yeah, it looks like it makes things worse for ranged, especially for someone like Azmo. Bruisers are already in a good spot when it comes to solo laning, now ranged will often have to risk exposing themselves, if they want to gather some xp globes. Even someone like Abathur is screwed, because now they have to choose whether to push with symbiote or help their team, but at the cost of not being able to pick xp globes while supporting their team. TLV are a niche hero, but for them getting xp while being split between lanes will require more coordination and risk of running into enemy, and a mage like Jaina can no longer simply cast aoe to clear a wave and run away, so overall it makes things a lot harder for most heroes, while only giving advantage to some bruisers and tanks. Not sure, how it's going to turn out in a longer run, but I would rather see it as something limited.

Edited by Arcling

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very bad idea

it might be interesting, melee may denial it vs ranged.

i guess it will become very boring on the long run. (personal, i dont care at all about this buble experience)

 

dev should focus more on matching system and improve social experience.

Edited by laboitedechoco

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