Wednesday, October 1, 2014 | HotScast Episode #24 | Hosts: Vincent (Rilandune), Mike (Fimlys), & Kali (NerdiChar)
Special Guests: none
Ril: Ladies and Gentlemen, Heroes of all ages, welcome back to the Heart of the Storm! This is episode number 24 of HotSCast, recorded 10pm on the right coast, 1st October, 2014.
HotSCast is the Heroes of the Storm podcast for the people, the players, the Heroes, often off-topic and always rail-free. I am your host Vincent, aka Rilandune. With me as always are my intrepid co-hosts
Mike, a.k.a. Fimlys, a.k.a. [Ril’s crazy name]:
Mike: Quick hello and witty something, 140 chars or less (twitter style) – “This is your fault. I’m going to kill you. And all the cake is gone. You don’t even care, do you?” (Portal)
Ril: What have you been playing this week?
Mike: Destiny.. And Gauntlet. Not much Heroes though.
and Kali, a.k.a. NerdiChar, a.k.a. [Ril’s crazy name]:
Quick hello and witty something, 140 chars or less (twitter style) – Okay listeners, I was really bummed last show when no one tweeted me the answer to my video game quote! Don’t let me down this week! The quote is, “You were almost a Jill sandwich!” Name that game. (Resident Evil)
Ril: What have you been playing this week? – Tons of WoW, I am in the mad dash to get all my toons to 90 before the xpac hits. Also, on Monday, 9/22, I had a guest spot on Hearthcast, which was super fun! We talked about “what Blizzard knows about you,” and I promptly made a tin foil hat after we went over that information. You can listen to episode #236 at http://www.hearthcast.com/.
Ril: Quick BlizzCon update! Blizzard released the exclusive Heroes goodies for BlizzCon attendees and viewers, which include the Ethereal Nexus Charger mount and a Nexus Brawler portrait. Check out the show notes for a link to view the items.
Link to view the items: http://www.heroesnexus.com/news/1204-heroes-of-the-storms-blizzcon-goody-exclusive
And now, onto the news.
This Week in Heroes
Ril: The Tech Alpha is now officially down and will be back online October 7. Why, you ask? If you are part of the tech alpha, you saw this email on September 20:
“We’re gearing up to enter the final phase of Technical Alpha, and there are several items you’ll want to keep in mind as it approaches. This is an exciting milestone for Heroes of the Storm. Preparing for this phase includes an account wipe, and we’d like to give you a rundown of everything you’ll need to know.
All Heroes Temporarily Available
We’re shutting down the Heroes of the Storm Shop on September 22. At that time, you will be unable to make any purchases using Gold or real money. However, we don’t want that to put a damper on your latest matchmaking win-streak. We’re thrilled to let you know that while the Shop is offline, all 29 Heroes in the Technical Alpha lineup will be available for play in the free Hero rotation!”
Ril: Kali, why don’t you tell us what Blizzard had to say about starting fresh.
Kali: Starting Fresh
“The week after we shut down the shop, we’ll bring the Technical Alpha service offline for more than a week of extended maintenance. During this time, you’ll be unable to login or play Heroes of the Storm and we’ll reset everyone’s Heroes accounts. Once the Nexus is brought back online, it will be as though you’re starting fresh with a brand new account. This means that any leveling progression you’ve made, rewards you’ve unlocked, in-game Gold you’ve earned, and any purchases you’ve made with real-money or Gold prior to the wipe will be reset.
However, kindly keep in mind that following the account wipe, any real money you spent thus far during play testing has not been lost and will be refunded to your Battle.net Balance. Even though you’ll be starting fresh at level one, you’ll still be able to use the refunded money to pick up that shiny Bundle Pack, Mount, or Skin you might have had your eye on over the last few weeks. As an added bonus, anyone who made a real-money purchase during the Technical Alpha will receive an exclusive Wonder Billie Mount!
This is the final planned Heroes of the Storm account wipe and monetary refund. Our goal is to avoid future player and hero progression wipes after we come back online, but we may still need to adjust or wipe player progression with future updates. Don’t worry, though, because we’ll give you ample warning if that ever becomes necessary. What we do know is that from the moment we bring Heroes back online after this wipe, purchases you make in the Shop will be permanent. So get those Heroes, Bundles, Skins, and Mounts with the confidence that you won’t need to acquire them again.”
Ril: Good stuff! So, the Legend of Zelda originally taught us that it’s dangerous to go alone. Mike, tell us why Blizzard wants us to remember that important lesson:
Mike: It’s Dangerous to Go Alone.
“Once Heroes is back online, all current players will be moved to their home Battle.net region. When this occurs, a number of things will happen:
You will lose access to the friends list you built in the Heroes Technical Alpha thus far. But you will regain access to your normal Battle.net friends list that you share with all other Blizzard games, including Diablo® III, Hearthstone®, StarCraft® II, and World of Warcraft®.
Your friends in other Blizzard games will now see you as playing Heroes of the Storm and be able to communicate with you across games.
If you wish to remain in contact with friends you made to this point in the Heroes of the Storm Technical Alpha, take down their BattleTags (both the account name and unique ID number) now, and add them to your friends list after the wipe. Please note however, that some of the friends you made in the Alpha may have a different home Battle.net region than you do, so it will not be possible to friend them unless you are in the same home region.
Though a lot of what’s happening is on the backend and not immediately visible to testers, all of the work we’re doing on this transition is a major step for Heroes of the Storm. For testers, we appreciate your patience through this process as we move forward in the development of the game. Until next time, we hope you’ll enjoy queuing up with our entire Hero lineup starting next Monday, and we’ll see you in the Nexus!
– Heroes of the Storm team”
Ril: We have two articles to cover this week.
Ril: Blizzard, via Vaeflare, introduced Battleground pages on August 27. These are interactive maps which include videos of key objectives, mercenary camps, points of interest, and more! Whether you’ve been out traversing the Nexus for months or are still eagerly waiting to jump into the fray, there’s always something new to discover.
Vaeflare says to look for fun details such as the notorious kraken, demonic pig, fisherman, drawbridge, outhouse, and sunken treasure chest.
Kali: These are such a great idea! For you min-maxers that don’t have game access, I would suggest to go read over these pages and get ready for the game when it goes live for you. We have played a few games that were close and we were able to secure the win by getting a merc camp or other objective. Think of these pages as the first of many strategy guides to come.
Link to the article: http://us.battle.net/heroes/en/blog/15487815
Ril: We briefly mentioned on the last show that Heroes now has an official league. We need to correct that because there are now at least 3 leagues that have already started to host tournaments. The ESV Champions League is a tournament of 8 North American teams. Playoffs begin October 1st.
Mike: Gosu gamers said, “The league promises to provide insight on the competitive side of Heroes of the Storm, a game still in alpha, making its first steps into eSports. The teams themselves are those occupying the highest MMR peaks in the game and are comprised of popular Heroes streamers and eSports figures from different games.” For those of you that aren’t familiar with the term MMR, it stands for “Match Making Rating.” In games, this is the internal, typically hidden rating that is used to match you with other players in ranked games.
Kali: There are some famous StarCraft II players on the ESV Champions League teams. Gosu Gamers made a good point, “I just find it fascinating that these players are coming from a game that requires incredible micro [managing] to be superior, to something that focuses on one unit alone.” That is kind of how I feel changing from last hitting in League to the team objectives in Heroes.
Ril: There is also the Heroes Premier League, which has 20 teams between North America and Europe. Their playoffs begin on December 1st.
Mike: And last but not least, the mYinsanity-VersaSphere North American Invitational currently has 4 teams. Those matches began on September 17th.
Kali: Make sure to check out the links in the show notes for access to the match videos. I’ve watched a few and they are so intense! And Ril, now you can start practicing your shout casting!
Link to the articles: http://www.lazygamer.net/general-news/heroes-of-the-storm-gets-its-first-league/
Ril: It’s been a while since we included this segment in the show, and we apologize for that guys. There has just been so much news to talk about lately that we haven’t had time for much else! I guess that’s actually quite a good thing, when you think about it.
So for this Heroes 101 segment, we’re going to talk about the concept of “counter-picking.” Kali, since you are the resident League of Legends expert, why don’t you tell us more about this concept within LoL for a comparison.
Kali: We are finally getting to see some competitive play in HotS, so hopefully a “meta,” possibly with “laning,” will emerge. While we await those details, let’s talk about how counter-picking works in League and relate it to what we currently know about HotS.
With counter-picking, you try to choose heroes that are strong against their matched competitor. So, for example, if I was playing AP Carry in mid lane on League (think magic damage assassin), and the other team chose Veiger, I would choose Syndra. The reason is that Syndra’s range is much longer than Veiger’s, so she can poke him all day long and prevent him from farming. This negatively affects him throughout the laning phase and puts him behind on gold for the entire match.
How does that translate in Heroes? Well, let’s pretend the meta is that mid lane always has a solo Assassin. If I see the other team choose Kerrigan, I might choose Nova so that I can poke Kerrigan from a distance. If I keep Kerrigan’s health low, she will have to hearth or run away, reducing the XP for her team in that lane and removing her from team fights while she is back at base.
Mike: [response] – maybe you could tell us about this concept in DOTA 2 or HoN?
You can follow the show on twitter @HotSCast, I am @Rilandune, Kali is @NerdiChar, and @Fimlys for Mike. Head to the shows homepage at hotscast.com for links to our Facebook, Google +, YouTube pages, show notes, videos, and more.
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Find our parent show hosted by our own Fimlys and his faithful co-hort Hydra at TwistedNether.net
You can hear myself and Nevik from Shattered Soulstone talk about all manner of Geeky things on Heroically Random, find that at heroicallyrandom.com
[edit: the first episode is airing Saturday, Oct 4 @ 10:00p Eastern!] Soon you’ll be able to hear Kali and close-friend of the show @GeekofRandom, or Adam from The Nexus as he sometimes is called, on the forth-coming internet dating show Charred Hearts.
At Blizzcon, make sure to come to our party on Friday night. The Twisted Nether Party.. Also go to the World of Podcasts party on thursday night.
You can find this show, Twisted Nether Blogcast, Heroically Random, and Charred Hearts on iTunes, Stitcher, and any podcatcher app of your choosing.
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Until next time folks, never stop asking yourself the question – Who is YOUR Hero?!
POTENTIAL SHOW TITLES!!!
1) I Can Poke Kerrigan
2) Warm Beer and a Cold Chicken Sammich
4) Where’s My Frikkin Monolith?
5) Willy Nilly Wonder Billy – WINNER!!!