BlizzCononline Rundown: Overwatch 2, WoW Burning Crusade Classic, Hearthstone Year of the Gryphon
As a result of the global pandemic that put conventions of all kinds to a halt, this year’s BlizzCon (aptly named BlizConline) was fully virtual and free to watch for everyone. The two-day event concluded yesterday but here’s a recap of announcements from Overwatch, World of Warcraft, and Hearthstone, just in case you missed a thing or two.
The Overwatch 2: Behind the Scenes featurette gave players an update on Overwatch 2 development and how the game has evolved since it was first announced in BlizzCon 2019. Some of these reveals were:
- New locations such as Rome, which is the setting for a map in the new Push mode, and the New York City of Overwatch’s future Earth.
- Fresh looks for original Overwatch heroes like McCree and Pharah.
- Null Sector foe tweaks based on player feedback from the Overwatch 2 demo at BlizzCon 2019.
- Reveal of new Null Sector enemies the Stalker and Breacher.
- A sneak peek at talents, a vital part of the progression system that allows players to customize their heroes’ abilities in the sequel’s all-new cooperative experience.
- An update on Story Missions and Hero Missions.
Until February 25, players can also celebrate the Year of the Ox with seasonal cosmetics (Kkachi Echo, Dragonfire Bastion, and Tiger Huntress Ashe) and an all-new brawl, Bounty Hunter.
World of Warcraft
A blast from the past sees World of Warcraft take players back to the game’s first expansion with the Burning Crusade Classic. Through the launch and over the course of content updates to follow, the recreation will bring back features from the 2007 original, including:
- The Shattered Realm of Outland
- Two New Playable Races—the Blood Elves on a quest to find a new source of arcane power and the Draenei, Outland’s exiles in search of a new home.
- 2v2, 3v3, or 5v5 combat in Arenas such as the Ring of Trials and the Circle of Blood.
- Flying mounts and new hero options.
- 5-player, 10-player, and 25-player dungeons in the Tempest Keep, Karazhan, and the Sunwell Plateau, respectively.
Similar to WoW Classic, access to Burning Crusade Classic will be included in players’ existing World of Warcraft subscriptions at no additional cost. Additional information on Burning Crusade Classic can be found here.
The start of another exciting year for Hearthstone awaits in the coming weeks with massive set overhauls, hundreds of new cards, and an all-new game mode.
The Year of the Gryphon kicks off its first expansion with Forged in the Barrens which is set for release in March. The Horde-themed expansion will introduce 135 new cards, the Frenzy keyword, and 10 Legendary Mercenary minions (each representing a different Hearthstone class) whose stories will be told throughout the year similar to Book of Heroes.
If you’re out of the loop then it’s about time you know that the Basic and Classic sets will be moved to Wild and will be replaced by the all-new Core Set. We’ve previously discussed the Core Set and Classic Format here.
A new game mode, Hearthstone Mercenaries, was announced to be in the works as well. The single-player game and competitive game mode has been likened to Dungeon Run and Slay the Spire and those claims aren’t entirely off the mark. Stay tuned for our upcoming developer interview story to get a better idea of what Mercenaries is, and it isn’t.
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