Senior VP Chris Metzen napušta Blizzard Entertainment

Business Insider objavio je da Senior Vice President of Story and Franchise Development Chris Metzen napušta Blizzard Entertainment, kako bi otišao na zasluženi odmor i proveo svoje vreme sa porodicom. Chris Metzen je bio Creative director mnogih Blizzard igara, a najviše u World of Warcraftu, kao i učestvovanju pravljena filma Warcraft.
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Source)
I had just turned twenty years old when I started working at Blizzard. Seems like a lifetime ago. Guess it was. Those first few years were the start of a very grand adventure for me, one that would take me around the world, introduce me to thousands of wonderful geeks just like me—and ultimately shape the course of my adult life.

Of course when I started, I had absolutely no idea what I was doing. I had no idea how to make games or build entertainment products.…

But I had an insatiable passion for ideas. For stories. For heroes.

My only real training before joining Blizzard was the long-running D&D campaign I had with my closest friends—Sam, Mike P., Daniel, and Mikey C. (you know who you are, boys…HAMRO!). Building ideas—vast worldscapes, characters, and plotlines with my friends was my first great love. I lived for it. It was a safe space amid the tension and change of some rough teenage years. The grand refuge of D&D was a glorious meeting of minds and imaginations where I felt I truly belonged.

It was a space where friendship and imagination were inextricably linked.

The sharing of ideas on the fly, the crazy, unexpected turns other players would take—it stretched our imaginations in ways we’d never have dreamt of on our own. I loved how roleplaying through adventures taught us so much about each other—and, more often than not, ourselves. Imagining together helped us make sense of the crazy world we were growing up in. It made us stronger together.

I wouldn’t really understand the depth of it for many years, but I had learned an important truth from my friends back then:

Creativity is relational.

Looking back at my years at Blizzard, I see now how profoundly this idea has shaped my career. I see how profoundly my friends and coworkers at Blizzard have shaped me as a person.

For nearly twenty-three years I’ve had the very distinct privilege of shaping worlds and building games with the brightest creative minds in entertainment. I’ve walked with giants (and stood on some giants’ shoulders, too).

In short, I’ve had the time of my life.

I pretty much had the coolest job ever—but the truth is, sometimes it was really hard. Building games with dozens of brilliant, passionate alpha-geeks with their own red-hot instincts and perspectives can be pretty tricky. Coming to consensus about certain design decisions, story motifs, or courses of art direction takes a lot of communication, patience, and “give and take.” It stretches you. Sometimes it wasn’t all that pretty. But engaging with your teammates and collaborating through the potential quagmire of all that creative tension is where the real magic happens.

It’s not just the decisions you come to—or even the final shape of the product you craft.… It’s bigger than that—and infinitely more important. True collaboration builds trust—and trust is the basis of all lasting relationships. With trust you build more than just a great product.

You build a TRIBE…that can build anything.

A family of craftsmen.

That’s what Blizzard has been for me. My second family, through all of life’s ups and downs, it’s always been there. The great, geeky backdrop of my life. I don’t just mean “the job” or even the creative mission—but the people. The people who over and over lifted me up, believed in me—and pushed me to find my potential as both an artist and as a leader all these years.

To my Blizzard brothers and sisters…I wish I had the words.

Everything just sounds…trite.

All I can think of is…

You helped me believe in myself and achieve every one of my wildest dreams.
I am forever grateful to you.

I love you all with everything I’ve got.

Thank you.

And to all of you out there in Blizzard’s vast gaming community—those of you I’ve had the pleasure of meeting in person and all of you around the world I’ve only heard about—thank you.

Thank you all for letting me be a special part of your community. For letting me belong with you. We’ve shared countless adventures together and I’ve always been overwhelmed and humbled by your passion for our games as well your commitment to each other. Thank you for all the BlizzCon hugs, smiles, handshakes, and stories over the years. You will never know how much you’ve all touched my heart and inspired me to give my all into this craft.

With that said, I’ll try to get down to the point, here. I’ve come to a turn in the road. A new, far quieter chapter in my life looms ahead.

I am retiring.

Yup.

Hangin’ up my guns.
Clockin’ out.
Takin’ the last gryphon out of Stormwind.
You get the picture.

Crazy, I know.

It’s a massive change for me, but it’s one I’ve been looking forward to for a while now. It’s ironic given the fact that things have never been better or more energized at Blizzard. Just this year alone has been incredible.

Legion’s arrival.
The launch of Overwatch.
The Warcraft feature film.

I’ve never been more proud of Blizzard and the quality of its products than I am now. It’s remarkable that even after all these years we can still reach new heights and take the world for an amazing ride. I believe Blizzard’s future is brighter than ever.

I won’t lie—it’s going to be really hard stepping away from these worlds that I love. But I’m content that I’m leaving them in the hands of the most passionate, talented, and dedicated craftsmen ever assembled.

I can’t wait to see where Blizzard’s worlds go next—and to experience them first-hand like everyone else does. As a fan. As an adventurer. Right back to the start.

That’s just so cool…

The reason I use the word “retire” is because I’m not going to some other company or starting up new projects or anything remotely like that. It’s been a long, amazing stretch of years. Now it’s time to slow it down. Rest. Lay around on the couch and get fat. Well, fatter.…

Seriously though, I’ll be focusing on the one thing that matters most to me in all the world—my family. They’re the core of my life and the source of my deepest joy and inspiration. In addition to raising our two little ones, we recently welcomed our new baby into the family! Being home with them all, having time and space to really live…to love my wife with all my strength…that’s my career now.

And I’ve never been happier.

Ever. ☺

Peace out, y’all.

I love you all.

I’ll see you online.

Chris

Blizzard Dodaje Facebook Login i Facebook Live Stream

Blizzard je izdao saopštenje da zajedno sa Facebook timom rade na Facebook loginu za sve Blizzardove igre, kao i izradi Facebook live API-a za streamovanje. Iako će ove izmene delovati na World of Warcraft, ovo saopštenje je značajnije za igrače Overwatcha, koju trenutno po poslednjim Blizzardovim informacijama igra 7 miliona igrača širom sveta.
Originally Posted by Blizzard  
Blizzard Entertainment and Facebook are working together to provide gamers around the world with new ways to connect and share their gaming experiences, while bringing more high-demand entertainment content to Facebook’s global platform.

The companies announced today that a major step in their ongoing collaboration will begin later this month with the integration of Facebook Login in Blizzard’s PC games. This will enable players to sign up for and log in to games such as World of Warcraft®, Heroes of the Storm®, Hearthstone®, Diablo® III, StarCraft® II, and Blizzard’s most recent blockbuster release, Overwatch®, using their Facebook accounts.

Adding Facebook Login will pave the way for new social functionality in Blizzard games while highlighting Facebook’s capabilities as a platform for sharing, viewing, and discussing AAA game content. As an example, Blizzard is in the process of incorporating Facebook’s Live API in order to create its own “Go Live” streaming functionality for its games. When this functionality is implemented, players will for the first time be able to livestream their Blizzard-gaming sessions directly to their Facebook timelines, and friends will be able to subscribe and be notified when new streams are available.

“Blizzard games are best when played with friends, so it’s important to us to provide our players with features and services that make it easy and fun to share their experiences with each other,” said Gio Hunt, executive vice president of corporate operations at Blizzard Entertainment. “We’re working closely with Facebook on this integration for Overwatch, as well as our other games, and we look forward to sharing further details on our plans as development progresses.”

As part of the collaboration between the two companies, Blizzard recently hosted multiple livestreams via Facebook. The first series of streams centered on Heroes of the Dorm™, Blizzard’s collegiate tournament featuring its popular team-brawler Heroes of the Storm. Last week, Blizzard hosted a livestreamed launch event for Overwatch on Facebook.

“Blizzard has a passionate community of players, and an incredible track record for launching innovative and high-quality gaming experiences,” said Leo Olebe, global games partnerships director at Facebook. “Our collaboration on Overwatch demonstrates Facebook’s commitment to partnering with AAA game companies, while further empowering Blizzard gamers to connect and share the content they're most passionate about with the friends they play with around the world.”

In preparation for the Overwatch launch, Facebook worked with Blizzard on a comprehensive mix of Facebook and Instagram marketing solutions—including Carousel ads, Canvas, and Instagram Marquee. Using the platforms’ powerful targeting capabilities, Facebook helped Blizzard present the game to a broad set of gaming and entertainment audiences within Facebook’s and Instagram's global audiences of 1.65 billion and 400 million people respectively. On Facebook, more than 650 million people play games connected to Facebook every month across web, mobile, and console.
 

Blizzcon 2016 - 4 i 5 Novembra

Blizzard je upravo najacio Blizzcon 2016 koji će biti održan 4 i 5 Novembra! Karte na prodaji kreću 20 i 23 Aprila!
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Source)
Get Ready to Raid BlizzCon® 2016 November 4 and 5

Summon your mounts, open up a portal, and set a course for Southern California for BlizzCon 2016! Blizzard’s tenth epic gaming convention and community celebration is returning to the Anaheim Convention Center on Friday, November 4 and Saturday, November 5, 2016.

Group up with your fellow Blizzard gamers and get ready for two days of in-depth discussion panels with our developers, hands-on play time with our latest games, and intense esports tournaments featuring top pro gamers from around the world. We hope you’ll join us as we celebrate 25 years of Blizzard games—and you, the players everywhere that have helped bring them to life.
BlizzCon 2016 Tickets

BlizzCon 2016 tickets will go on sale in two batches on Wednesday, April 20 at 7 p.m. PT and Saturday, April 23 at 10 a.m. PT through the online event ticketing service Universe, priced at $199 each (plus applicable taxes and fees). Check out the BlizzCon Ticket webpage for all the details.

We’re also planning a special pre-BlizzCon Benefit Dinner the evening of Thursday, November 3 in support of Children’s Hospital of Orange County (CHOC), where guests will have a chance to raise a glass and geek out with developers, artists, community team representatives, and other members of the Blizzard family. Tickets go on sale Wednesday, April 27 at 7 p.m. PT, priced at $750 each, and attendance will be limited—visit the Charity Ticket page for more information.
Virtual Ticket and Goody Bag – Coming Soon!

If you can’t make it to the show in person, don’t fret! You’ll be able to participate in our tenth BlizzCon from the comfort of your home with the BlizzCon Virtual Ticket, offering comprehensive live coverage of the event via a multichannel Internet stream. Once again this year, Virtual Ticket buyers will have the option to purchase a special BlizzCon Goody Bag filled with a cache of loot to mark the occasion (while supplies last). Further details on the Virtual Ticket, including pricing, availability, programming info, and Goody Bag will be announced at a later date.

Check out the BlizzCon Ticket page for more information, and be sure to visit the Universe ticket page at the dates and times above for a chance to purchase a ticket to the show. We hope to see you there!

Heroes of the Storm Battleground Blizzcon 2015 Panel

Battleground Panel za Heroes of the Storm je završen i na njemu se govorilo o glavnim ciljevima mape, novoj mapi Towers of Doom i Arena dizajnu!
Originally Posted by Blizzard
Core Goals
  • Clean Design
  • Conflicts
  • Finality
Battleground Gameplay
  • Complete objectives
  • Get rewarded for those
Layout
  • They like to avoid specific Map Rules and layouts.
  • Determine the Map Mechanics first, and then do a design to support that.
  • Sky Temple: the objective already creates that "teamfight" scenario for the developers.
  • Tomb of the Spider Queen: objectives in lanes, split players. The map layout being really small incentivizes the teamfights.
  • Mercenaries: they cause small conflicts in specific places of the map - make them interesting. Cause big impact by pushing lanes.
Towers of Doom
  • Battleground where two Nexus Lords are fighting for control - tug of war and area control type of map.
  • They wanted to create something really unique - all previous maps still have 2/3 lanes, mercenaries and a core.
  • Devs asked themselves "do maps really need a core?"
  • First layout of Towers of Doom did not have a Core - there were 5 forts, sort of circular float to it. The towns themselves were the map's mechanics. Whoever owned more towns first would get more points.
  • It was a failed experiment - it was kinda anti-climatic. Intense at first, but with mostly non dramatic endings. Current maps have that epic feeling!
  • They went back to a more standard design - Towers of Doom has unique mercenaries however!
  • Grave Golem - replaced by the Headless Horseman from World of Warcraft. Completely different mechanic - when you cap this mercenary, it shoots volleys of spirit energy towards the enemy bases.
  • Altars - places on neutral positions along the battleground, a hybrid control territory on the map.
The Art of Towers of Doom
  • They feel it's kinda boring playing on the same battleground over and over again, so it's all about creating unique and varied gameplay experiences.
  • They wanted it to have the mood of a Dark City. Color is very important for that.
  • Inside the structures they want "warm" colors to make the outside feel cold.
  • Victorian like architecture, lots of dark iron and foreboding structures.
  • Lots of textures in this map (ancient stones, dilapidated wood, rusty stuff). Ancient town feeling.
  • Dark... but not depressing!
  • Bell Towers (of Doom) > Necromancer Tower. When destroyed it will explode but will rebuild belonging to the opposite team.
  • Town Structures - Armory Town / Farm Town / Blacksmith Town. Personality to each town.
Arena Design
  • Devs are always trying to find new ways of making the game mode challenging and fun for players.
  • Lots of them were super excited about a fighting arena mode for a while now.
  • Great for players who want something completely different from Quick Match and Hero League.
  • Random hero selection (from a pool of 3 - based on an archetype). Focus on fast-paced action around a single objective.
  • Quick and easy to jump into.
  • They wanted the mode to be even more action packed than the standard Heroes match, and even shorter.
  • They wanted players to be able to form new creative strategies.
  • They tried "all random" at first, but it didn't work. Players need some control and choice.
  • 10x Hero Mode - randomly chosen by the matchmaker; gives everyone the same hero choice.
  • A game with 10 Johannas in internal playtesting took 30~ minutes. That's why they added some rules to their team compositions.
  • Heroes with very little damage cannot be chosen in this 10x mode (Medic, Johanna, Abathur).
  • In other Arena matches, cannot roll more than 2 warriors or more than 2 supports.
  • Players start at level 10 and do not level up. No talents as well, all they choose is the Heroics.
  • Benefits: low learning curve when playing new Heroes (since they are all available). Focus on moment-to-moment action. No falling behind in power.
  • Hero respawn timer is 15 seconds.
  • Behind the scenes they're already adding new Arena battlegrounds, and expanding mechanics. Breaking even more rules.
Art of Arena
  • Garden Arena (daylight version) > Tournament grounds, to make it feel like a renaissance fair. Jousting arena with knights fighting each other.
  • Spectators behave differently depending on how much action is happening. In a multi-kill they all cheer for you!
  • Garden Arena (night version) > population winding down, sitting around a campfire.
  • Garden Arena (underground) > glowing plants! Really claustrophobic, not man-made like the Haunted Mines.
  • Temple Arenas (bizarre, oasis, desert).
 
Heroes of the Storm Battleground Blizzcon 2015 Panel                                                                                                                                 

World of Warcraft Q&A Blizzcon 2015

Originally Posted by Blizzard 
  • When we discover Aalleria and Turalyon in Legion, the way you view WoW will change. Amazing things in store.
  • It is important to sell the fantasy behind races and classes in the game. Then they will support and customize races. They want to do sub-races, just not sure how to do it right yet. Going to continue to work on it.
  • There are more and more groups that are cross servers, so the current guild structure doesn't meet their needs. A solution won't make it for launch, but some way to communicate with a cross-server group is something they are working on.
  • The flying achievement will exist at launch, but you won't be able to complete it at launch. You can start progressing on it though.
  • In Legion, there will be a short appearance by Bolvar Fordragon, likely at the Frozen Throne.
  • The team has a wide array of class quests with the Artifacts, one for every spec. The team is focusing on class content in this expansion, but it will likely be artifact related rather than green fire quest.
  • The team is looking at how tapping works in the outdoor world. Rather than one person hitting a mob and getting it, it would be nice if several people could tap it to get credit for quests and loot. No need to group with people you come across when questing. Open tapping will remain for larger NPCs like quest and world bosses.
  • Launching expansions more quickly is still a goal. Not sure when they would get to one per year. Quality is more important than release dates.
  • Tomb of Sargeras is just a monument.
  • Guilds are very important to the social structure of the game. It would be ideal if you could be in multiple guilds at some point, one for PvP, one for Raids. Maybe a secondary guild system? Still in progress.
  • No new battleground, focus is on the new PvP progression system.
  • No plans to update old starting zones for Legion. There will be Legion invasions in the world, maybe one will take place there. Legion wants to invade Azeroth, aren't going to start with the Exodar.
  • The Broken Isles version of Dalaran is upgraded, you will find out the secrets that are protecting it, they are big.
  • The team wants to get around to resolving old stories from Cataclysm at some point.
  • Keystone affixes are standardized globally for the week, so no need to try and find someone with one that is slightly easier.
  • The new transmog system should help with the inventory space problem.
  • Titan's Grip for Fury warriors is not dead. Artifact is too small, will be sized up. Holding 2 x 2H is a cool distinctive thing.
  • Legion will get into the details of multi Legion vs singular Legion.
  • One more character slot is coming in Legion.
  • No new scenarios in Legion that you queue for, but lessons learned from MoP scenarios used to create scenarios that are part of the leveling and questing experience.
  • You can pre-order, buy the collector's edition, and contact customer service to get the difference.
  • The team doesn't want the Artifact to be a blocker for playing multiple specs. There are lots of catch-up mechanisms in place to help you bring 2nd or 3rd weapons up to speed with your main one, as well as people who took a break from the game. You will have to decide what weapon you will use your Relics on though.
  • Legion will allow you to use all the specs, no longer limited to dual spec. No such thing as no spec anymore.
  • Multistirke is just another form of crit, doesn't appear in many of the class fantasies.
  • Versatility has a defensive component, useful for PvP, tanks, not a fantasy problem. Each stat should have a special identity and purpose. Do people hate Versatility because it is not strong enough or because of how it works?
  • The team doesn't like account wide things, because the point of having an alt is playing the alt, but things should be a bit faster the second or third time you do it. More and more people want to play and maintain alts, so the team is aware of the need to make things faster when you play it again.
  • Nothing like the AQ gate opening is coming. There will be the invasions around the world, taking server level participation. A large event would be nice, but it needs to be the right time and place.
  • Karazhan will be relevant in Legion. The secrets we need to beat the Burning Legion are in Karazhan. Karazhan could be a 5 player dungeon in Patch 7.1.
  • One of the Artifact quests will shed some light on what is going on in Tirisfal Glades.
  • Wrathion may have some interest in Highmountain and Neltharion's lair. Don't expect him to look the way he did before.
  • The team could make old world materials relevant again, but Legion is going to focus on new materials. Not sure you would enjoy old materials being relevant again.
  • New lore is coming for Tauren, Forsaken, Worgen, maybe even something for Gnomes.
  • Old Gods will play a role in Legion.
  • Some of the huge raids the team made in the past were awesome, but they might be better if they were broken up. More smaller raids, different environments, part of the same tier.
  • The team has tried to use non-linear layouts to make things faster for guilds that only raid a couple of nights a week that still want to progress.
  • Reforging isn't coming back. It isn't needed anymore.
  • You won't be using Artifacts forever, maybe display them on your mantle in a future expansion.
  • Part of the coolness of older rewards is how rare and cool they are. If you were guaranteed to get something it wouldn't be as cool. There is a difference between mounts / pets and power items.
  • Dance Studio - Still don't have the animation time for it.
  • No plans for Vanilla realms. Lots of emotional desire for it, but when other MMOs tried it, it didn't work out. Lots of complexity, old code, old hardware, old data, old bugs. Players would expect things to be fixed.
  • You can transmog other things to look like Artifacts, but you can transmog Artifacts to look like other things if you really don't like it.
  • Alliance and Horde are coming together in your Class Hall to confront a common enemy.
  • You will still have the language barrier in the Class Hall. You can see the other faction, but doesn't mean you can speak their language.
  • Demon Hunters of either faction can speak Demonic to each other!
  • OpenRaid is a great site, group finder has worked out well so far, team wants to continue to expand on it and social tools.
  • No AU heroes at the start, after that TBD.
  • Genn Greymane and some Gilneans will appear.
  • Gear from strongboxes will be similar to gear you get out in the world, what you get based on ratings.
  • We will see Gul'dan before the boss encounter, it is a big part of the storytelling.
  • Mythic flex would be too hard to balance. It is challenging in lower difficulties now, would be much harder with Mythic and people trying to optimize group sizes.
  • Mythic being 20 players is the right number, especially with another class on the way. It allows for certain designs that require a decent number of players. Maintaining a guild roster is a struggle no matter what the raid size is. Ideally they will make it easier to find players and for players to find guilds, rather than changing the raid size again.
  • No new roles (tanking Warlock) for existing classes are planned in Legion. Legion is about enhancing the fantasy of the existing classes and roles.
  • Legion Challenge Dungeons won't be part of the random matchmaking system. One person is putting their Keystone at risk. Guilds, social circles, and group finder will be where you find players. Having an unused keystone is a desired commodity. People will be lining up to use your Keystone on a Sunday, shouldn't be hard to find people.
  • The team hates split raiding, high end guilds hate split raiding, but there isn't a good way to solve it yet. Forcing personal loot would solve it, but that isn't something that some players would enjoy. Open to suggestions.
  • Nefarian will get an update for a Demon Hunter class call, maybe using double jumps.
  • Melee got some new effects and animations in Legion, hopefully people will enjoy them.

Heroes of the Storm State of the Game Blizzcon 2015 Panel

Na Heroes of the Storm State of the Game Panelu govorilo se o Overpower herojima, balans aplikacijama koje blizzard koristi, bugovima, velikim problemima i matchmaking sistemu.
Originally Posted by Blizzard 
Who's considered Overpowered right now?
  • Lili and Murky have the highest win ratios.
  • Lili has seen increased win ratio due to heroes like Thrall and Raynor being picked more often.
  • Murky has had a high win ratio for a year now. So even though he isn't picked often in competitive, he isn't the highest priority right now.
Recap 2015
  • Technical Alpha > Beta > Launch on June
  • First year for E-Sports on Heroes - Heroes of the Dorm (nationally broadcast and vert big) and Road to Blizzcon Tournaments
  • 11 new heroes added this year - 43 total heroes!
  • 4 new battlegrounds - 9 total!
Balance Tools & Their Uses
  • The win ratio they strive for Heroes to have is 45-55%.
  • Heroes like Lost Vikings are at the top, while Abathur and Stitches are more towards the bottom.
  • Talent pick and win ratio are also an important indicator of hero balance.
  • Tournaments and E-Sports serve to identify the future meta beforehand - very important to determine necessary balance changes!
  • Player Feedback is another tool for game balance - Forums, Reddit, Twitter. So keep sending your feedback!
Big Issues
  • Kerrigan - melee assassin, initiator for her team, all-in aspect getting in the middle of enemies and bolstering her survivability.
    • She had an extremely low talent diversity - with even low win rates for less picked talents.
    • Improved Talent Diversity - by sharpening her role, giving her build options, and making her viable in competitive play.
    • Changed 8 talents, cut 4 previous ones, created 3 new ones - much improved talent diversity!
  • Uther - melee support, has lots of burst healing, very strong and complete kit. Very stable win rate (across most skill levels) at 50% win ratio.
    • BUT he's always picked or banned in competitive games.
    • They believe his strongest trait is to "disrupt coordination". Which is what competitive play is about.
    • Divine Shield - cooldown from 70 to 90 seconds.
    • Eternal Devotion - ghost duration decreased from 10 to 8 seconds.
    • They are meant to be minor changes, to bring him down a notch. They don't want to overdo it!
  • Cho'Gall
    • Two-headed hero, controlled by two players. One player is the warrior Cho, who controls the movement, and the other is the assassin Gall, who's responsible for the damage and combo'ing his abilities for maximum impact.
    • They cannot balance based on a previous template like with Greymane or Lunara. They don't have a "two heroes in one" template.
    • Playtesting games with Cho'Gall often ended in a snowball, either in favor and against him. Early game advantage / lead grows out of control.
    • Really hard to balance because he's 2-in-1. If he's ahead then he can wreck havok really easily, and if he's behind he can be picked off and the team immediately loses TWO heroes!
  • Scaling Changes
    • 65% of the games are really close! (only decided towards the end) ... they wanted more of this.
    • Cho'Gall helped them realize that scaling was an issue, and what lead to snowballs - hence why they implemented the "Test Map" released on Morales patch.
    • Benefits
      • Players can still fight while behind!
      • Roles were sharpened. Your character feels like what they're supposed to be from the start.
      • Wins feel more meaningful. It doesn't feel like you're stomping other teams.
    • Consequences
      • Early game matters less - which lead to "increased death timers".
      • Takedowns should be a "power play", which gives you map control and allow you to take objectives more easily.
  • This is all coming with the Cho'Gall update in a couple weeks!
Future Balance Updates
  • Gazlowe Updates
    • Improve E-Sports viability.
    • Enhance his zone control.
    • Couple crazy ideas (not sure if they will make it): talent that makes your turrets shoot a laser while you're charging yours; another crazy idea is an active that he starts throwing scraps around and he has to run around and pick them up.
  • Nova Updates
    • Improve talent diversity.
    • She walks a thin line (balance) between casual vs competitive.
    • Increased skill cap on her skills/talents - one of the ideas being analyzed is "if you land a Snipe, it increases the dmg of your next Snipe by a %".
  • Tychus Updates
    • Increase his win rate - it's kinda low now.
    • If they're only going to make him stronger (flat buffs) he might simply push aside other assassins (Valla, Raynor).
    • They want him to be a Unique assassin on his own.
    • Might become a "tank buster" assassin.
Matchmaking & Online Updates
  • 80% of their games are "even" on their matchmaker. That means the MMR numbers are at least well paired.
  • 65% of the games are at least close on levels.
  • 20%~ are launched with the matchmaker knowing that the match is not very well paired.
  • These are averages, but may vary from player to player. Some player might experience a 95-5% variation, while another experiences bad matches 50% of the time.
  • Improvements in 2015
    • Early on for New Users, MMR was inflated (slightly more than "bottom"). They didn't get matched by games played. Now both factors are fixed!
    • New User win ratio was 38%, which is bad. Now after changes, it's 48%.
    • Rank was a combination of skill and games played - now there are more placement matches, where rank reflects player skill.
  • Rebuilding the Matchmaker
    • The original matchmaker came from Starcraft 2 - but the two games are very different! It's much harder to put together a "fair" match in Heroes due to variation.
    • Old system builds games quickly, takes into account the thousands of players searching for a match, then starts swapping players to find a "good match". Complicated system that doesn't work when they add rules (similar matchups, parties, not having a support).
    • The new 10 minute limit (up from 6) does not help that scenario! That's why people are still experiencing bad matches.
  • New System
    • Builds games to be good. Relies less on player swapping around. Creates a queue!
    • On simulations the new system looks much better.
    • They WANT to release it over the next couple weeks. They cannot promise it, but that's the plan. It's their TOP PRIORITY right now!
  • 2016 Goals / Fixes
    • Improve MMR accuracy.
    • Mirror team composition in quick match (not same heroes, but same categories).
    • They have months of data for calculating "Team MMR".
    • Use match performance to adjust MMR.
    • Per Hero MMR adjustment.
  • Ranked Play
    • Their original system was a mix of Starcraft + Hearthstone.
    • The current system is a little bit too harsh. If they want to be accurate (MMR), you're always prone to dropping in ranks.
    • Right now there's not enough transparency for players (why they ranked up or dropped in ranks).
  • Death Recap Screen - likely coming early next year! Will contain heals and shields too!
  • Bans were tested throughout this year on competitive, and the devs loved it. Also coming very soon!
  • Grandmaster League
  • Talent Gating (requiring hero or account level to unlock talents) = removed.
  • Free Hero Rotation from 7 to 10 heroes.

Q&A

  • They don't really manipulate players' perception on things. If the community tells them a hero is weak or strong, they might wait to either see if the community figures it out, or wait for the community to just PROVE the devs wrong. Both cases are a win-win scenario for them.
  • The decision to remove 3-4 parties from Hero League was based on the intention to improve the matchmaker - sort of a defensive stance from them. Ideally they want such a good matchmaker that they can re-add 3/4-player parties back to Hero League. Or maybe do an unranked draft.
  • On Twitch viewership and sheer game popularity - the devs are aware of that, and everything they do (new features, heroes, matchmaker changes) is with the intent of improving the game and making it better.

World of Warcraft: Legion - Game Systems

Mnogo informacija naučili smo danas sa World of Warcraft: Legion - Game Systems Blizzcon 2015 panela. Puno detalja o tome kako Artifacts sistem funkcioniše, Class Halls, Demon Hunter klase, Profesije i Itemizacija.
Originally Posted by Blizzard
Artifacts
  • The Deadwind Harvester - Purged the life from Deadwind Pass, for Affliction Warlocks. Get together with Council of Black Harvest, steal some information about artifacts from the Legion. Go to Deadwind Pass, under Karazhan! Every time you kill something, you get a damage boost for a short time. Souls try to escape and you can reap the damage boost effect.
  • Artifact power comes from quest bosses, rare spawns, rare drops, dungeons, raids, battlegrounds, arenas.
  • Artifact traits are unlocked by artifact power. You start with some traits unlocked. You first unlock active traits that you put on your bar.
  • After the active trait there are more choices, some of them passive. Minor traits have multiple ranks, you have to unlock them all to progress into the tree.
  • Eventually you can unlock every trait in the tree, but it will takes months into the expansion. You can keep getting smaller power increases after that, so weapon will get more powerful throughout the expansion.
  • Relics can be socketed into the artifact to increase power. Increases item level and gives bonus ranks to some traits. Go from 3 to 4 or 5 ranks in a trait, giving you some customization.
  • Two types of relics for each weapon.
  • You can eventually upgrade your artifact. Dungeon and world content lead up to a big upgrade moment. Upgrade will unlock a new model.
  • You can also get other models from different types of gameplay, as well as different colors.
  • Finish questing zones or do something that is significant to your weapon.

Class Halls
  • Class halls needed to be in a location that strongly represents the class. You should feel like your class when you are in that space.
  • Some Warriors see themselves are a barbarian or berserker, some as a knight fighting for what is right, some as a grizzled veteran. All of them should feel at home in that space.
  • Class Orders are stepping up to fight the Legion.
  • Druids almost had a class hall already with Moonglade. It gets pretty close to meeting the criteria, welcoming a variety of druids, but it could do a better job of immersing them in nature, welcoming feral and guardian druids more.
  • Druids are getting the Dreamgrove, you can feel the influence of the Dream around you. No other classes are allowed in. It fits better than Moonglade.
  • You will find a shrine in your class hall to unlock traits and work with your Artifact.
  • Class champions are also found in your class hall. Some of them are leaders of their own factions. You will unfold their backstory over time and see them in the world.
  • You will interact with your Scouting Map in your class hall. It lets you select your starting leveling zone and you come back to it for new content later on.
  • There is class specific content in the halls, such as demon hunting quests or pickpocketing quests.
  • There are lots of features and bonuses in the halls. Some are shared among many classes, such as armor stands to show off tier sets you have earned from previous content.
  • Hunters have a lodge in Highmountain, getting access to special flight path network no one else has.
  • Druids can reach many other natural places in the world very quickly.
  • Warriors can spar in an arena for bragging rights.
  • Every class will have their own variation of Death Gate to quickly go to their class hall and back. Giant eagle that takes you for hunters.

Demon Hunter
  • Demon Hunters are a dark hero, giving up their soul to fight a threat that most people don't even know exists.
  • Use weapons of the enemy against them, warglavies, fel magic, sculpted biceps.
  • You can select your horns, blindfold, tattoos, custom skin textures, plus normal customization options.
  • New VO for Demon Hunters, things like /train, /flirt, /silly.
  • Havoc is the melee spec with emphasis on mobility. Fight fire with more fire!
  • They use fury, generated by abilities, somewhat like rage.
  • Demon's Bite - Generates random amount of fury.
  • Chaos Strike - Does not consume fury, but requires you to have some.
  • Throw Glaive - No fury cost, short cooldown, no minimum range, hit multiple targets.
  • Blade Dance - Talent that might become a skill.
  • Double Jump adds mobility.
  • Glide is like your own goblin glider, with demon wings! Activated by jump key, no other keybind.
  • Other damaging abilities may not require a target and can be done in the air. Can use them to move outside of combat.
  • Consume Magic - Interrupt someone and gain a full bar of fury.
  • Metamorphosis - Leap in the air, transform, slam into ground, stun everyone, get more damage, more fury, 100% life leech. Gain defense through offense.
  • Spectral Sight - 10 sec cooldown, see through invisibility, stealth, walls.
  • Vengeance - Demon inquisitor. Extracting information from the enemy by using fire and inflicting pain. Also have picked up some protective spells. Maybe glaives and parry.
  • Strong defensive cooldown Metamorphosis. Lots of modifications through talents and Artifacts.

Classes
  • Immersive - You should feel like everything you do is involved with class. Abilities, names, animations.
  • Distinct - Every class and spec should have something unique.
  • Empowering - Your character is powerful, total control over what you are doing, use abilities the way you want to use them.
  • Death Knight runes restricted gameplay, so there are now 6 runes, one type, don't worry about what types are off cooldown anymore.
  • Fury Warrior is controlled by how many charges you have of different things. Use Enraging Blow as much as you want. Use Whirlwind, don't worry about Meat Cleaver.
  • Arcane Charges are a resource in addition to mana rather than a buff to monitor.
  • Arcane has a strong fantasy that you really didn't feel while playing. The mana management could ruin things. New mastery - Savant, increases the amount of mana you have. Mana level doesn't matter anymore. Also increases charges damage.
  • Survival Hunter - Melee spec with pet side by side, all of the old abilities are back and awesome.
  • Disc Priest - were a different flavor of Holy, but not good enough. Atonement is now core healing mechanic, now heal by dealing damage to enemies.
  • Subtlety Rogue - Had a really cool ninja fantasy. Shadow Dance was pretty cool, but it is now a passive. 20% chance to re enter stealth that doesn't break from taking damage. Can figure out what you want to do, new opener, combos, finisher, repeat.
  • Shadow Strike - Teleport to target, do Ambush level damage opener.
  • Honor Among Thieves gone
  • Demonology should be about summoning demons, not becoming one. More new minions, buff them and send them out to attack. Metamorphosis is for Demon Hunters.
  • Guardian Druid should be a giant bear, not dodging. Now about increased health, armor, survivability.
  • Shadow Priest - was poor cousin of Affliction warlock. Tapping into the void. Insanity - No more mana or Shadow Orbs, going more insane. Grow tentacles, transform into Void Form. Makes you more and more powerful the longer you stay there. Can only stay there for so long, Insanity drains away, keep generating as much as you can.
  • Talents will have less theme rows, more meaningful choices, more spec specific talents, hundreds of new talents!

Professions
  • More stuff to do!
  • Recipes all coming from the trainer is gone. You should get out into the world and carve your own path, go on adventures.
  • Tailoring sends you to Dalaran, wants to know what cloth is like in Broken Isles. You go get some cloth, sew with her, make a robe, cloth is falling apart and not working. Go out into the world, meet a Nightfallen who helps you with sewing problem, teaches you more patterns, find out why he was exiled, why he is so good at tailoring.
  • Miners learn from a dead Tauren. More efficiently mining new materials like Leistone, new Ore.
  • Mining and Herb nodes will be shared. Everyone can gather from a node, no more stealing nodes.
  • Recipes have ranks, 1-3 star recipes. Rare, make you more efficient at crafting things. Less materials, shorter cooldown.
  • Profession UI getting an update, bigger window, list on the left, details on the right, favorites at the top.
  • Learned and Unlearned tab, so you can see what you don't know and where to find them.
  • Obliterum. Build a big forge in the middle of Dalaran, convert crafted items you don't need anymore into Obliterum. Create ring, it has the wrong stats, destroy it and make Obliterum, use it to increase power of the ring you are wearing.
  • Lots of things to do with professions, shouldn't be running out of content.
  • Crafted gear should be special, helms are made out of gun parts. Shoot bullets at enemies with your head. Necks from JCs have guaranteed gem slot. Class specific buffs, 15% move speed for Warrior when enraged.
  • Inscription - Major glyphs are gone! Still have Minor Glyphs and Darkmoon Trinkets. Glyphs are a consumable, applied directly to the spell. One glyph per spell, but no limit on total glyphs! Vantus Rune - Week long buff that targets a specific boss. 10% bonus damage on Xavius.
  • Archaeology - Expansion length campagin over several months, lots of cool things to display, wear, equip, pets.
  • Cooking - Gnomie comes from Pandaria, more recipes, can make bacon
  • Fishing - More like an adventure, less what are you watching on your other monitor.

Items
  • Used to have rare world drops, they are back.
  • Rare drops, from anywhere in the world.
  • Power should be relevant throughout the entire expansion.
  • Unique effects - Role, Class, Spec based effects. Movement speed increase based on haste, extra rage from blocked attacks, etc.
  • World drops are legendary! - DoT has a chance to trigger full remaining effect each time they tick.
  • Lots of world drop variety.
  • Drops aren't fully random, will have ways for you to target them.
  • All of the Legion items can scale, could be the best item in the game (super rare).
  • Duplicate personal loot can now be traded. If you have an item that is equal to or less than power level of what you have, can trade it to anyone else who was eligible for loot.
  • Transmog - Clean up bank and inventory some more. More customization. A collection system.
  • Wardrobe - As soon as item is bound to you, appearance is unlocked. Once it is unlocked, you can get rid of it. Account wide! Have to be able to equip item to unlock it.
  • New transmog UI - Left side is the same as the old one, right side is visual gallery of models. Top has a bar that shows you how many appearances you have unlocked.
  • Outfits - Make item sets, store what you look like now, link outfits to other people even if everything isn't unlocked.
  • When you log in to Legion, all of the items you have are unlocked, as well as items from every quest you have ever completed, including items you didn't even pick.
  • Save different outfits per spec. Switch set when you switch specs.
  • You can hide slots (cloak / helm / shoulders) per outfit.
  • Hiding shoulders allowed!
  • Weapon enchants, shirts, and tabards for transmog!
 
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