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by Published on 2020-04-06 06:40 PM

Heroes of the Storm PTR Patch Notes - April 6, 2020
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker)

Our next Heroes of the Storm patch has just hit the Public Test Realm and will be available for playtesting until the week of April 13, PDT. As always, if you encounter any bugs during your PTR play sessions, please stop by the PTR Bug Report forum to let us know about your experiences.


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Nexus Anomaly - A Call For Help

We’ve heard feedback over the years that a lot of you would like to feel more protected by nearby friendly structures. Currently, Minions, Summons, and non-Heroic units can hold a structure’s attention for so long that defending players feel that they’re offered no additional protection when taking refuge under their Cannon Towers, Forts, Keeps and Cores. In order to address this issue, we will be making the following changes to structures:

Cannon Towers, Forts, Keeps and Cores
  • A beam is now created from these structures to their targets, making it easier to see what is being attacked at a glance.
  • Allied Heroes of the structures who are being attacked by enemy Heroes will cause the structure to focus the offender until the offender is dead or leaves tower range.
  • A bright beam indicates that the structure is defending an ally Hero and is focusing on the beam target.
  • Structures reset targeting when the Call for Help target becomes invalid.
  • Structures reset targeting logic when they recover from being disabled.

Cannon Towers, Forts and Keeps
  • Damage to Heroes increased by 10%.
  • Attacks reduce Hero Armor by up to -40.
  • Cannon Tower attacks reduce enemy Hero Armor by 5.
  • Forts and Keeps attacks reduce enemy Hero Armor by 10.
  • Forts and Keeps no longer slow enemy Heroes.

New Core Abilities
  • We want fights around the Core to feel like exciting ends to cap off great games, and we feel like we can do more to deliver on that front. To that end, this Seasonal Nexus Anomaly will introduce themed abilities to non-ARAM Battleground Cores:
    • Battlefield of Eternity
      • Every 8 seconds, the Core will spawn 2 volleys of Frozen Orbs that explode, dealing 5% maximum Health as damage and Rooting enemy Heroes hit for 1.5 seconds.
    • Blackheart’s Bay
      • Every 4 seconds, the Core will shoot a cannonball at 2 nearby enemy Heroes, dealing 5% maximum Health as damage, slowing them by 70% for 1.5 seconds, and knocking them back.
    • Braxis Holdout
      • Every 4 seconds, the Core will shoot 5 missiles at a nearby enemy Hero, dealing 5% maximum Health as damage per missile.
    • Cursed Hollow
      • Every 3 seconds, the Core will spawn a Curse under a nearby enemy Hero. If they are Cursed, they take 5% maximum Health as damage and their Armor is reduced by 75 for 4 seconds.
    • Dragonshire
      • Every 6 seconds, the Core will throw 2 boulders at a nearby enemy Hero. Heroes hit are turned to stone, damaged for 5% of their maximum Health, and Stunned for 1.75 seconds.
    • Garden of Terror
      • Every 5 seconds, the Core shoots a seed under a nearby enemy Hero. When the seed explodes, Heroes inside are Polymorphed for 3 seconds.
    • Hanamura
      • Every 8 seconds, the Core fires 2 volleys of missiles around it, dealing 5% maximum Health to enemy Heroes and slowing them by 70% for 1.25 seconds.
    • Infernal Shrines
      • Every 8 seconds, the Core will spawn 2 volleys of Frozen Orbs that explode, dealing 5% maximum Health as damage and Rooting enemy Heroes hit for 1.5 seconds.
    • Sky Temple
      • Every 23 seconds, the Core will spawn 2 sets of 6 tornadoes which swirl around it, dealing 25 damage to enemy Heroes and knocking them back.
    • Tomb of the Spider Queen
      • Every 5 seconds, the Core will shoot a Death Wave, dealing 5% maximum Health as damage to enemy Heroes and slowing them by 70% for 1.25 seconds.
    • Volskaya
      • Every 6 seconds, the Core shoots 3 Rocket Fists at nearby enemy Heroes, dealing 150 damage and knocking them back.
    • Warhead Junction
      • Every 18 seconds, the Core launches a Nuke at a nearby enemy Hero, dealing 30% maximum health to enemy Heroes hit.


General

Mastery Rings - Tier 3
  • Get ready to show off your dedication to your favorite Heroes with the next level of Hero Mastery Rings! These new rings become purchasable once a Hero reaches level 50 and you already own the first and second rings for that Hero.

A.I.
  • A.I. trees have been refactored in order to reduce conflicts between the tactical and goal systems.
  • Agents will attempt to stage and wait for backup around objectives before attempting to contest.
  • Disconnected players will have their A.I. return to base and remain there unless they are pinged to follow.
    • Follow behavior is the same for disconnected player A.I. and normal A.I.
    • While following, the agent will attempt to fight while remaining close to their follow target, leashing back if they wander too far away.
    • While following, the agent will mount or use their Hearthstone if their follow target uses their mount or Hearthstone.
  • Adjusting A.I. Healing Well goal health threshold from 75% to 60%.
  • Bringing an A.I. who is on follow close enough to Doubloon turn-in on Blackheart's Bay, Soul Gem turn-in on Tomb of the Spider Queen, or a healing fountain will cause the A.I. to interact with them appropriately if they are able.

Favorite Talents
  • Create your favorite talent builds
    • Players can pick their favorite talents on the talent panel from Hero select or draft screen.
    • In order to favorite a talent, simply click the talent. Once it's selected, you can click the talent again to unselect it.
    • Players can create up to 3 builds per each Hero and can activate one build at a time.
    • To switch to a different build, click the build buttons shown on the top of the talent panel.
    • If any significant change happens to a talent tier due to a balance patch, the selection for the tier will be reset.
  • Share your favorite builds
    • You can generate a hyperlink for a talent build by clicking the cog menu next to talent build buttons on the Hero select screen.
    • If you paste this link on the chat, it shows as a hyperlink in the chat history.
    • If you left click the link, it shows the preview of the talent build.
    • By right clicking the link, you can copy the link to your clipboard or directly save it to your Hero's corresponding build slots.
    • The format of the talent hyperlink is as follows. [T1231231,Lucio]
  • In-Game & End of the match screen
    • A favorited talent will display a favorite icon on top of it.
    • You can switch the build in the middle of the game based on your strategy.
    • For the future tiers, you can adjust your favorites by clicking the talent button in the same way you would do in the Hero select screen.
    • All changes made in game are saved.
    • After game ends, you can use the cog menu on the talent tab to copy other players' talent builds.

Storm League
  • Matchmaking Changes for GM & Masters
    • Master and Grand Master players are no longer restricted to queuing with only one other player.
    • Master and Grand Master players are no longer restricted to queuing with players who are within 5000 ranked points.
    • Made some changes to matchmaking rules that should improve the quality of matches for Master and Grand Master players.

Developer Comment: We have been actively monitoring matchmaking throughout the season and are going to be making some changes which will help the player experience. Firstly, we found that our party size restrictions for Masters players didn’t give the experience that we had envisioned, so we are reverting these changes. The limit for queueing as a party will require players to be within 2 leagues of each other, with Diamond players being able to queue up with Master and Grand Master players. Additionally, we have made some changes to all regions so that players who are Masters and above should find games being made with as many high level players as possible, which should result in better matches.


Experience
  • Floating Combat Text for experience earned from killing blows now has a unique purple color and displays at the position of the killed unit. Floating Combat Text from experience earned from Experience Globes remains unchanged.

Experience Globes
  • Pickup Radius increased from 1.5 to 1.75.
  • Experience Globes that are actively travelling to a Hero will attempt to follow more closely.

Developer Comment: We're making some small improvements to Experience Globes to make them more readable and to improve how they feel to pick up by adding a unique purple text that displays where they are killed. With these changes, players should more clearly see when they gained experience via a killing blow. We also found that sometimes picking up experience globes while mounted could be a bit of a hassle due to the pickup radius of the globes as well as how quickly they travel to players, so we are slightly buffing both of these aspects to make them a little easier to collect in these instances.


US Region Selection
  • After looking at the causes for North American players' longer wait times and instances of not queuing together, we are bundling matchmaking for our US regions together. This will only happen for players if they have good pings to both sites, and our simulations have shown that we can create better games faster this way. If you don't experience this, please let us know!


Collection

Many seasonal items will be returning to the collection, and will be available for crafting and in Loot Chests for a limited time!

New Bundles (Limited Time Only!)
  • Fragments of the Dark Nexus Bundle
  • Dark Nexus Harbingers Bundle
  • Dark Nexus Deathwing Bundle
  • Dark Nexus Fenix Bundle
  • Dark Nexus Tassadar Bundle
  • Dark Nexus Beast Pack
  • Caldeum Complex Bundle

New Skins
  • The following skins will be available for a limited time:
    • Dark Nexus Deathwing
      • Shattered Dark Nexus Deathwing
      • Forgotten Dark Nexus Deathwing
      • Awakened Dark Nexus Deathwing
      • Astral Dark Nexus Deathwing
    • Dark Nexus Fenix
      • Imperial Dark Nexus Fenix
      • Awakened Dark Nexus Fenix
      • Eldritch Dark Nexus Fenix
      • Astral Dark Nexus Fenix
    • Dark Nexus Tassadar
      • Forgotten Dark Nexus Tassadar
      • Awakened Dark Nexus Tassadar
      • Eldritch Dark Nexus Tassadar
      • Astral Dark Nexus Tassadar
    • Dark Nexus Gul’dan
      • Entropic Dark Nexus Gul’dan
      • Sadistic Dark Nexus Gul’dan
    • Dark Nexus Alarak
      • Astral Dark Nexus Alarak
      • Awakened Dark Nexus Alarak

New Mounts
  • The following mounts will be available for a limited time:
    • Dark Nexus Beast
      • Shattered Dark Nexus Beast
      • Forgotten Dark Nexus Beast
      • Wild Dark Nexus Beast
      • Awakened Dark Nexus Beast
      • Astral Dark Nexus Beast
    • Astral Dark Nexus Hound
    • Awakened Dark Nexus Hound
    • Astral Dark Nexus Manta
    • Awakened Dark Nexus Manta

New Content
  • Several new portraits, sprays and other items have been added to the collection for a limited time!


Heroes

Tassadar Rework


Trait
  • Resonance Beam
    • Tassadar’s Basic Attack is a long range channeled beam that deals 14 damage every .25 seconds and Slows its target for 10%. While channeling, your Basic Attack damage and Mana Regeneration increase by 25% a second, to a maximum of 100% bonus. While fully charged, gain an additional 3 mana per second. This bonus is lost after 6 seconds of not channeling.

Basic Abilities
  • Shock Ray [Q]
    • After a .375 second cast, channel a fast moving electric beam that deals 280 damage and slows all enemies in a line by 25% for 2 seconds.
    • Mana: 55 Mana.
    • Cooldown: 7 seconds.
  • Psionic Storm [W]
    • Create a storm of psionic energy at the targeted location, dealing 38 damage every .5 seconds to enemies within its area for 3 seconds. This damage increases by 10% for each consecutive hit, to a maximum of 50% increased damage.
    • Mana: 60 Mana.
    • Cooldown: 8 seconds.
  • Force Wall [E]
    • After a .5 second delay, create a wall that blocks all units from moving through it for 2 seconds.
    • Mana: 70 Mana.
    • Cooldown: 21 seconds.

Heroic Abilities
  • Archon [R1]
    • Transform into a powerful Archon, gaining 40% of your maximum health as a shield and empowering Basic Attacks for 12 seconds. Empowered Basic Attacks deal more damage, splash in a small area, and reduce the Spell Armor of Heroes by 20 for 2 seconds. While in Archon form, Resonance Beam is fully charged.
    • Mana: 100 Mana.
    • Cooldown: 90 seconds.
  • Black Hole [R2]
    • After a .5 second cast, launch a Black Hole that travels in a long line. While travelling, the Black Hole quickly pulls enemy Heroes towards its center. Touching the center deals 310 damage and stuns for 1.25 seconds.
    • Mana: 80 Mana.
    • Cooldown: 70 seconds.

Talent
  • Level 1
    • Static Charge [Q]
      • Quest: Heroes hit by Shock Ray permanently increase its damage by 4 and grant 33% Resonance Beam charge.
      • Maximum of 200 additional damage.
    • Psi-Infusion [W]
      • Increase Psionic Storm’s range by 33%. Each non-structure enemy hit by Psionic Storm restores .5 mana, increased to 5 against Heroes.
    • Khaydarin Amulet [Trait]
      • Quest: Resonance Beam charges 50% faster.
      • Reward: After remaining at full charge for 80 seconds, Resonance Beam bounces to hit 1 additional target for 50% damage.
      • Reward: After remaining at full charge for 160 seconds, Resonance Beam bounces to hit 2 additional targets for 50% damage.
  • Level 4
    • Induction [Q]
      • Casting Shock Ray increases Tassadar’s move speed by 15% for 3 seconds. If an enemy Hero is hit, increase this bonus by 10%.
    • Electric Fence [E]
      • Enemies near Force Wall take 46 damage every .5 seconds and are slowed by 35%.
    • Plasma Shield [Trait]
      • While Resonance Beam is fully charged, gain a shield equal to 3% of max health every second. Stacking up to 15% maximum health.
  • Level 7
    • Beam Alignment [Q]
      • When Resonance Beam is fully charged, your Basic Attack range is increased by 1 and the cooldown of Shock Ray refreshes 100% faster.
    • Psionic Echo [Q/E]
      • Casting Psionic Storm causes your next Shock Ray within 3 seconds to cost 30 mana and create a Psionic Storm on the first Hero it hits.
    • Arc Discharge [Trait]
      • After reaching full charge, the next instance of Resonance Beam damage creates a Psionic Storm at the target’s location. This effect has a 20 second cooldown that decays twice as fast while Resonance Beam is at full charge.
  • Level 13
    • Feedback [W/Trait]
      • On targets afflicted with Psionic Storm, Resonance Beam’s slow is increased to 60% and it also reduces Physical Armor by 25.
    • Shadow Walk [Active]
      • Activate to gain unrevealable Stealth, 40% movement speed and 25 Armor for 1.5 seconds. 60 second cooldown. Can be cast while channeling Shock Ray or Black Hole.
    • Oracle [Active]
      • While stationary, gain 30 Spell Armor for .75 seconds and heal for 12 health each second. Activate to channel for up to 4 seconds, revealing a gradually increasing area anywhere on the map. 45 second cooldown.
  • Level 16
    • Thermal Lance [Q]
      • The first enemy Hero hit by Shock Ray takes 8% of their maximum health as damage.
    • Psychic Shock [W]
      • Psionic Storm deals damage 25% faster.
    • Executor’s Will [Active]
      • Activate to gain full Resonance Beam charge, 15 Spell Power, and cause Ability cooldowns to refresh 25% faster. This effect lasts as long as Resonance Beam is fully charged. 60 sec cooldown.
  • Level 20
    • Twilight Archon [R1]
      • Basic Attacks while in Archon form increase its duration by 2 seconds.
    • Kugelblitz [R2]
      • Each Hero hit by Black Hole creates a Psionic Storm at their location.
    • Force Barrier [E]
      • Increases the range of Force Wall by 50%, its duration by .5 seconds, and reduces its cooldown by 10 seconds.
    • Khala’s Gift [Passive]
      • Gain 4 spell power for yourself and each nearby ally Hero, up to 20. Your total bonus is shared with all contributing allies.

Developer Comment: We’ve been teasing the Tassadar rework for a long time and it’s finally here! Tassadar was previously considered a support Hero, but we felt there was a disconnect between his kit/playstyle and the core fantasy of a High Templar or the other Protoss magic users. Because of this, we’ve re-imagined Tassadar from the ground up as an ability based Ranged Assassin, similar to characters like Kael’thas and Gul’dan. He retains his Psionic Storm, Force Wall and Archon abilities and has gained two new abilities: Shock Ray and Black Hole. His talent tree has also been radically transformed, giving him a slew of powerful new ways to play. We’re very excited to finally get Tassadar into your hands and hope you all enjoy the rework as much as we have!


Xul


Base
  • Health reduced from 2200 to 2080.
  • Health Regeneration reduced from 4.58 to 4.33.

Developer Comment: We’re happy with how Xul’s rework has gone overall in improving his gameplay and talent diversity. He is, however, overperforming, so while we wait for more data, we’re doing a reduction in the Health he gained to bring him more in line.


Bug Fixes

General
  • Toy Train Mount
    • Worgen Greymane, Metamorphosis Illidan, Dragonqueen Alexstrasza, Odin Tychus, and Archon Tassadar can no longer mount as a caboose on the Toy Train.

Heroes
  • Fixed an issue where various Physical Armor buffs were not appropriately reducing damage from non-Heroic targets.
  • Arthas
    • Army of the Dead Ghouls no longer stop following Arthas when affected by certain abilities.
  • Deathwing
    • Deathwing's Energy tooltip while in Dragonflight now is correctly called Energy instead of Mana.
  • Garrosh
    • Fixed an issue where Garrosh would fail to throw moving targets.
  • Imperius
    • Imperius' Flash of Anger will now properly trigger if it kills a target.
    • Clarified Flash of Anger's tooltip to reflect that it deals damage to the target as well as all targets around them.
    • Fixed an issue where players were unable to issue attack commands while using Celestial Charge, causing them to auto-acquire nearby targets.
  • Nazeebo
    • Crowd Control effects on Nazeebo's Zombie Wall with Dead Rush no longer causes Zombie Wall to become unresponsive.
  • Stukov
    • Fixed an issue where Weighted Pustule was removed by Unstoppable.
  • Tracer
    • Fixed an issue where Tracer's A.I. would sometimes stop using her weapons to auto-attack targets.
  • Xul
    • Fixed an issue where Corpse Explosion did not link to an ability in the Death Recap.
  • Zarya
    • Zarya's To The Limit no longer causes Zarya's weapon beam to appear shorter at certain energy levels.
by Published on 2020-04-05 09:27 PM

April 5th Teaser
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker)
This will be interesting.

by Published on 2020-04-01 07:42 PM

All Heroes Free Until April 13th
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker)
All Heroes will remain free until April 13th!

by Published on 2020-03-19 04:57 PM

Greek Gods Event Sneak Peek
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker)

Heroes artists discuss their process… and manage to leak this year’s Greek Gods event

“Brew is awesome. Brew is amazing,” says Trevor Jacobs.

“I’m OK,” says Andrew Kinabrew, sitting back in his chair with a slight smile and arms folded.

“He’s amazingly OK,” says Jacobs.

Interviewing Jacobs and Kinabrew—Heroes of the Storm Assistant Art Director and Senior Artist, respectively—is like interrogating two giddy suspects who can’t get their story straight, except they’re riffing off of their own jigsaw-fitted dynamic so well that you almost don’t care what you pulled them in for anyway. Their crime, in this case? Creating hundreds of accessories for in-game murder. We sat down with the artists to find out what exactly has been going on behind the scenes of their criminally creative skin pack concoctions.

First: Some background on our suspects. The awesome, amazingly OK Kinabrew started at Blizzard eight years ago on the project that would soon become Overwatch. After a year he switched onto Heroes of the Storm and has been working with Jacobs ever since.

Jacobs, a Blizzard veteran of 24 years, worked on a range of projects, from Warcraft II and III to the original StarCraft, before coming to Heroes, where he says he’s found his passion project.

“Heroes gets to do so much fun stuff,” Jacobs says. “It’s like being a kid with this huge toy box. You get to play with everything. Selfishly, I feel like any dreams we have, we get to do.”

Well, a kid with a toy box doesn’t sound so dastardly after all.


The Toys in the Toy Box

So where exactly do these dreams start, and what’s the process of bringing them to completion in-game? As it turns out, skin concepts come from a diverse number of places. Some skins are drawn from the artists’ life experiences, or their fond memories of Blizzard IPs and pop culture during their childhood, inspiration from the community, jammed out during the annual team-wide Hackathon, and probably more. (It would be foolish to assume kids want to share all their toys in the box with you.) The nesting ground for these ideas is the art team’s backlog of over 200 skin concepts, where skins develop their own stories and mythos to surround them over the course of years. Making it off the backlog is no easy task: it means the skin probably combines several of the influences listed above, and it’s garnered enough admiration from the rest of the team to have accomplices to allow for its escape into the Nexus.

Nexomania's El Chamuco Diablo skin, which remained on the backlog for two years, was one such example, and we shudder to think of the sheer volume of player lives it’s claimed since its release.

Kinabrew, who created the original concept for the Legendary Mariachi Reaper skin in Overwatch, came up with a Luchador Diablo concept shortly after joining the Heroes team. He believed the skin could be part of a greater event and championed it internally for years, working to convince others, too. Finally, the Luchador Diablo domino elbow-dropped: others started to embrace and pursue the idea. A design manager used his previous experience writing for a wrestling game to help brainstorm wrestling moves. Another artist who grew up watching lucha libres with his family made concepts for other Nexomania skins.

“The animators came up with really cool poses. And then our community team made cool luchador masks for us,” says Jacobs. “Even getting an announcer, which is usually a pain because you have to do it in every language—people we didn’t expect to become advocates were championing [the event] with us.”

The event inspired everyone to add a little bit of themselves to its creation. Kinabrew, who is originally from New Mexico, adds that it was his opportunity to represent his home and family in one of his favorite games.

“[In New Mexico] we have a lot of Latino influence. My wife is Mexican-American,” he says. “It just reminds me of home."


My Big Fat Greek Leak

Nexomania wasn’t the only event that arose from the toy box like a plushy brought to life by a precocious child’s unconditional love. Let’s not forget why we pulled these two villainously artistic minds into interrogation in the first place—we have a lead on a new criminal plot in the works.

“I’m trying to think what we can leak. The Greek God stuff is pretty fun, right?” Jacobs says, looking sidelong at Kinabrew.

Kinabrew chuckles nervously, eyebrows threatening to leap off his face.

“Greek Gods was another idea we’d been mulling over for years,” Jacobs says.

The Myth skin pack, a subevent coming later in the year, also came together thanks to a diverse set of influences and several years on the backlog. A community skin for Uther, called “Uthor” after the Nordic God Thor, was part of the inspiration. But once the team translated the concept to Cassia with a lightning bolt for a weapon, the full event was finally born.

“We were thinking, wouldn’t it be cool to see Cassia with a Zeus skin? Because her kit is all lightning. And then it started hitting like ‘what if we added this character? Or that character?’” Jacobs says, punctuating each sentence with a snap of his fingers, reminiscent of a lightning bolt striking earth.



The bolt of inspiration started from Thunder Goddess Cassia electrified the team to create a Hermes-inspired Tracer skin, a Cerberus mount, and a Pegasus mount—all of which the team can’t wait to unleash onto the live server.









The skins are in the pipeline now; Kinabrew recently finished his “consistency pass,” to make sure the whole pack is visually consistent. Soon, he and Jacobs will be on to the next project. On the Heroes art team, there’s always another dream to explore.

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