I was graciously given the opportunity to try out the new Blizzard moba Heroes of the Storm which is still in beta at the moment and is up for public release in one month. I have put in around a good 25-30 or so hours in the online battle arena and can safely say I do not completely feel like a noob anymore. Understanding the mechanics of play, the maps, and abilities of most of the content is important for really judging a game and its worth.
The playstyle of HotS is very similar to League of Legends(being of the same genre) except that it doesn’t involve last hitting and laning isn’t necessarily as important as other objectives. The obvious main objective would be to destroy your enemies base but on each map there are side objectives which are practically too important and powerful to continue laning while they are available.
The character animations are classically cartoony as are all Blizzards creations. Beautiful. The maps are very strategically diverse allowing for top tier play making and incredible matches. Challenging. The characters will seem similar to others of the same genre and yet stand up on their own as they already have massive amounts of lore and background. Established Content. The matches are generally short and yet they seem to grab at your heart and soul for anywhere from 15-30 minutes. This game is well on its way. Pure PVP.
The mechanics are more pvp oriented forcing teams to stay aware of the map, the presence of enemies, and the countdown for objectives. If you are caught out and alone right before a side quest objective becomes available then your team will likely lose the chance to take advantage and take a loss in the race of base destruction. The team aspect relies heavily on working together and shared experience. Learning to prioritize when to push and when to roam is imperative but essential as catching an enemy alone and grabbing a kill before a good push can mean free experience for the taking.
A team that has an advantage of two or more levels will likely win most fights unless their positioning is off and the carries or assassins get picked off before your own teams. The matches are generally evenly matched using the famous “elo” MMR(match maker rating). With a diverse opening line up of heroes you have endless possibilities in your rise to the top.
A few of my favorite things about the game would be: The free week heroes. The leveling systems for yourself and your choice heroes. The use of abilities on structures to help the base race. The glorified pure pvp that comes for free as there is no rune system. The diversity of possibilities in each match. The free color upgrades for leveling your favorite heroes and mounts. OH YEAH! THE MOUNTS! This is groundbreaking honestly this saves soooo much time and is the next gen moba heaven. Mounts are cool and they are super helpful for initiating and if you can juke enemies long enough to mount then you are set up for freedom good jub buddy.
Anyways, lets be honest. League of Legends is the most popular game in the world right now. Heroes of the Storm is piggybacking into the largest gaming esport of MOBA. I hate to be a blizzard fanboy after World of Warcraft added pandas but this game is just more enjoyable starting from the bottom and working my way up. Im still playing league of course but I do devote time to both, maybe not equal bc I have literally no friends who play HotS but it is very enjoyable and is nice when I dont have a full hour to waste away on video games but want to get into the thick of some interwebz warzone.
I really dont see why it wouldnt be possible for Heroes to take a lot of the LoL glory and playerbase. The community is HUGE as blizzard is grandfathering its fanboys into the ranks of HotS. I can only see it getting bigger. As for things I would say need to be changed? nothing yet. I like the fact that there is no surrender button it boosts the endgame attempts and removes the midgame tilt. Its a solid game and I hope blizzard is prepared to keep it updated regularly as this is the only downfall compared to what LoL has to offer.