We understand the concern many players have with the recent Battle.net authenticator changes. To that end, we’re exploring the idea of adding an “Opt Out” option within Battle.net Account Management, which would then force the prompt for an authenticator code whenever you log into World of Warcraft.
To be clear, we have gone to great lengths to ensure Battle.net accounts and authenticators provide players with a high level of security. Maintaining a safe and secure Blizzard gameplay environment remains a top priority for us.
[...] We've been discussing the best way to implement new options for this feature since the moment it was announced. We don't yet have additional details about exactly how we might implement the feature, or whether it's something you'll need to opt out of by default, or opt into by default.
Very Rare Drop Mounts (Source)
You'll likely always see a variety of ways to obtain mounts in the game. We don't necessarily implement all of them in a way that ensures we acquiesce all mount collectors or achievement hounds.
We want a healthy number of mounts to remain fairly rare in the game, and sometimes that involves making them huge luck finds in dungeons or raids. For the average player, there will always be plenty of new mounts to acquire or work toward, but we also want to have a decent variety of coveted mounts that only a lucky handful of players will find.
Players often express concern that they end up looking like everyone else when they acquire awesome gear. This was somewhat a flip from the concept that tier sets were much too difficult to obtain back in the day. We share this concern and also think it's a problem that would apply to mounts as well, if some of the more rare ones out there had their RNG components removed.
There are so many mounts in the game now that having some really rare and random prestige rides is okay by us. ;)
Happy Birthday, StarCraft II The StarCraft II Development Team looks back on one year of StarCraft II.
Community Spotlight – Music
Community Spotlight – Videos and Compilations
Community Spotlight – Art and Machinima
eSports is here, and we love it
Happy Birthday, StarCraft II!
On July 27, 2010 we launched StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty. We sent Blizzard developers to major launch events in locations spanning the globe including London, Berlin, Paris, Stockholm, Moscow, Fountain Valley (near Blizzard HQ), Singapore, Taipei, Mexico, Brazil and Australia. We were grateful for a chance to celebrate the launch with gamers all over the world, but we weren’t out of the woods yet. We watched and worried for the next few days. Was the game good enough to be worthy of the StarCraft name? Would the players like it?
Within the first 48 hours, the game sold over 1.5 million copies, making it the fastest-selling strategy game of all time. Within a week, we finally breathed a sigh of relief, believing that maybe we had created a game that could stand on its own, a game strong enough to carry the StarCraft legacy onward for years to come.
Even after the launch we had no idea what would happen. Would the balance hold up to the demands of the eSports community? Would the professional players want to play? With the first season of GomTVs Global StarCraft II League and the addition of StarCraft II to Major League Gaming, those fears were put to rest. From legendary Brood War heroes to relative newcomers, these players displayed incredible skills in head-to-head competition. Since then, more tournaments have sprung up to make StarCraft II a truly global phenomenon, including hundreds of local and regional tournaments, as well as the North American Star League, IEM, Dreamhack, and TSL tournament series, and to date nearly $2,000,000 has been awarded to these truly exceptional players.
These tournaments have left us with electrifying memories: FruitDealer’s triumph in GSL season one. HuK’s epic victory at DreamHack Summer. NaNiWa’s legendary streak at MLG Dallas. MarineKing showing us what it takes to dodge banelings. NesTea teaching us how to crack a protoss wall-in. We’ve witnessed many great moments in StarCraft II competition in such a short time, and we’re barely scratching the surface. The amazing games and incredible plays we have seen in this first year are too numerous to list and have left us eager to see what happens next.
Of course, eSports is only part of the picture. The StarCraft story continued to unfold as players fought desperate battles in the Wings of Liberty campaign. We watched as a whole new generation took up the challenge of proving their skills as StarCraft II players. We witnessed millions of ladder matches and team games played on Battle.net over two seasons of ferocious ladder competition, and we’re getting ready for a third. We derive our greatest sense of fulfillment from watching as players around the world enjoy the game.
The mapmaking community did its part too. With tens of thousands of custom maps uploaded to Battle.Net and hundreds of amazing custom games to play, we have all marveled at the technical, artistic, and creative skill of the StarCraft II mod community. Desert Strike, Storm of the Imperial Sanctum, City of Tempest, The Star Strikers, Smashcraft, Star Battle and, of course, Nexus Wars have shown us an entertaining glimpse of what the talented StarCraft II community is capable of creating. We couldn’t resist throwing our hat into the ring and hope that players have enjoyed Aiur Chef, StarJeweled, and Left 2 Die.
StarCraft is more than just StarCraft II, it is a culture that has been with us for over a decade. It’s a game and a world that we are honored to be part of. We’ve been hard at work making sure that the sequel holds up to the high standard of excellence we’ve set for ourselves. We released 14 patches since the game’s launch, including many small balance adjustments and a ton of improvements too. We’ve added brand-new Battle.net features like the Master and Grandmaster Leagues, custom game improvements, chat channels and more, and we remain hard at work on further improvements.
We’re not even close to resting on our laurels and we remain just as fiercely dedicated to StarCraft II today as we were the day it launched. Today we have a Blizzard DoTA playtest. Tomorrow we are going to play the first part of the Heart of the Swarm campaign (complete with cutscenes!). We continue to work on expanding multiplayer and improving Battle.Net. We can’t wait for BlizzCon this year: not only will we get to meet with players from all over the world and make some exciting announcements, but we’ll also get a chance to watch some of StarCraft II’s best players go head to head live in both the Global Battle.net Invitational and the GSL Finals.
So, we wish you a happy birthday, StarCraft II. You had an amazing first year, and we’ll do our best to make sure that you’ll have many more great years to come.
- StarCraft II Development Team
The previously announced StarCraft II region linking is now in effect with the start of Season 3, and is an amazing step forward in bringing players together from around the world. We welcome players from Russia to the battlefield, and look forward to facing them on the ladders. Get ready to compete!
The third StarCraft II League season has begun! Bonus pools and standings have been reset, and Season 2 milestones have been awarded. To see your Season 2 results, simply hop in-game and head on over to the Leagues and Ladders section.
Don't forget: The hidden skill ratings used for matchmaking and league placement have carried over, so that means if you were already placed in a league prior to the Season 2 lock, you'll only need to play one placement match to kick off the new season.
Good luck, and have fun!
The 2011 European Battle.net Invitational is fast approaching and you’ll be able to follow all the action free of charge. To get you warmed up, we’ve begun uploading some VoDs of the best StarCraft II, Warcraft III and World of Warcraft matches from last year’s event. Visit our site to find out what eSports was like back in 2010—when Reapers were fast to build and the Lich King reigned from atop the Frozen Throne.
StarCraft II Show Match #1: Liquid`TLO vs. SK.MaDFroG
We have a very special treat to begin with: a show match between Dario ‘Liquid`TLO’ Wünsch and Fredrik ‘SK.MaDFroG’ Johansson! Don’t miss this epic TvZ from almost one year ago, when the StarCraft II metagame was still in its infant stages. Your hosts are no other than Benjamin ‘DeMusliM’ Baker and Blizzard’s own Rob ‘The Voice’ Simpson.
Sit back and discover how macro-games used to unfold on the ever-popular map Metalopolis. You surely don’t mind watching the power of the swarm being unleashed against heavy, entrenched terran defences, do you?
Be sure to check out the last part of the VoD as well to witness one of the first appearances of Xel’Naga Caverns in professional gaming. Oh, and stick around for an interview with both players after the match, conducted by none other than Kevin ‘RotterdaM’ van der Kooi.
Visit our site dedicated to the 2011 European Battle.net Invitational frequently, as we'll keep updating it with free VoDs and more!
Get into the right mindset with classic matches and pictures of last year’s event. We’ll continue to add more content over the coming weeks, so by August 6, when the action is about to start, you’ll find everything you need to know about the 2011 Battle.net Invitational in one place:
- Tournament information: What is it, when, why, and where? Any more questions?
- Travel information: Do you want to soak up the atmosphere at the Invitational in person? We’ll tell you how to get there
- Video playlist: Find classic replays and the newest matches conveniently listed right on the front page
- Twitter feed: Stay up to date with all Battle.net Invitational tweets
- Facebook integration: Like, share and follow the event together with your friends
- Blog overview: Missed a blog update? See all related articles about the event at a glance
- Player profiles: Who will be fighting for glory and prize money?
- Media section: Browse pictures of past events and watch videos of the matches – stay tuned for current media
- Brackets: What legendary encounters are you about to witness?
- Tournament schedule: Know what’s happening when
- HD live stream: Watch the combatants battling it out live on stage, professionally shoutcasted and broadcast right into your home
So, are you ready for juicy eSports action? Our website will provide you with everything you need to enjoy the 2011 European Battle.net Invitational in Warsaw, Poland. Make sure to stop by regularly in the coming days to get warmed up for the big showdown!