First Impressions of… Heroes of the Storm

You know those days where you sign up for a Beta and then forget you did it? You do? Me too!

Though, that’s not entirely true- I do remember signing up for this Beta as I know a few people who play it and love it. So, naturally, as I never get the Betas I want, I decided to sign up as what were the chances? Hilariously I once got into the World of Warcraft Cataclysm Beta and I’d only just returned to the game with Moggie at Lvl 40-45 or something.

So, what is Heroes of the Storm? Well as best I can tell it’s kind of in the MOBA genre. Which, for someone like me, who has played no MOBAs ever, is pretty unnerving from the first click into the game as I don’t really know what you do. I mean, I get the PvP elements- but I don’t know what a Support is or a Warrior or an Assassin. While these titles mean things to me in other games it’s something I’m not quite sure of here. Is the Support a healer? Are they someone with a great amount of utility? Do they literally support and buff other characters? Is there a holy trinity where a number of Warriors, Supports, and Assassins are required? What’s a Specialist? Can they sell me insurance? Why does Tyrael ride a horse when he has wings?

The good and the bad news is that it seems to be that you don’t necessarily start with any Heroes whatsoever. So, when you first load the game, which I’m assuming holds true for release, you start with a blank slate. However, I do believe the free Hero rotation will also hold true for release. Which is a weekly selection of four-six Heroes (depending on your level) that you can play for free.

Additional Heroes can either be bought with real money or with gold. Gold is accrued fairly consistently as you finish matches, level your profile up, level your Heroes up, do daily quests, and generally as you play the game in any shape or form. I don’t know if it is entirely possible to get every hero with gold and no real money purchases but I would assume with enough time and effort it would be.

Speaking of game modes you have quite a few. Practice (where you can play and level Heroes to test them out), Quick Match (where you play against other players with other players), Cooperative (where you play with others against AI opponents), Hero League (where you do solo or group play for a rank), Team League, and Quick Match.

Not entirely sure what Team League does yet. In Quick Match it seems you just match up against differing levels of AI ruthlessness but it doesn’t seem to contribute gold, experience, or just about anything else. So, yeah, lots to do and you don’t necessarily have to play with others straight away. You can get used to the different roles, maps, Heroes, and so on at your own pace. It does seem to have quite a lot of charm, too. Not sure if it’s something I would continue playing well into release as I’m not the greatest PvP fan. But, for now, it offers a great little distraction and quite varied gameplay despite the broad umbrella of Warrior, Assassin, Specialist, and Support.

I’m certainly having a lot of fun playing it on and off and it does get a lot more interesting as you build your Hero roster into something stronger, more varied, and ultimately more fun.

Have a nice weekend, all!

Moggie

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