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Category Archives: blizzard

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Blizzard Reiterates Commitment To Combating Overwatch Toxicity

Tyler Lee November 20, 2017

The unfortunate reality of multiplayer games is that there will be players who are toxic to other players and might be abusive in the things that they say and do. Overwatch is no exception to this, although Blizzard is working on it. That being said, a recent post on Reddit has highlighted the seriousness of the problem.

In a post by NessDan, it basically compares how Overwatch’s toxic player problem is starting to look a lot like the issues Valve had at the start of DotA 2, where it was discovered that players were quitting the game not so much because they didn’t like the gameplay, or found it too hard, but rather because of the toxic players that they encountered that ruined the experience for them.

It was suggested that Blizzard needs to start treating this more seriously if they’re hoping to avoid the pitfalls of DotA 2 (which Valve has managed to correct and reverse, at least to a certain extent). To that end, Overwatch Community Manager Griffin has responded to the thread, reaffirming the company’s decision to combat toxicity.

“Thank you for sharing this. We do take this very seriously and eliminating toxicity is still a priority for us. I’m sure you’ve all read this post from back in July and we’re still committed as ever as we continue to invest in improving the entire process.” Blizzard had previously suggested that trying to combat the toxic behavior of players has slowed down updates of the game, where resources are spent putting out those fires rather than being able to move forward.

Blizzard Reiterates Commitment To Combating Overwatch Toxicity , original content from Ubergizmo. Read our Copyrights and terms of use.

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Belgian Authorities Investigating Star Wars: Battlefront 2 Loot Boxes

Tyler Lee November 16, 2017

These days we’re starting to see developers introduce loot boxes to their games. Basically these loot boxes contain a variety of items, depending on the game you play. For some this includes additional gear, like weapons, armor, in-game currency, and so on, some of which actually impact gameplay, while some are merely cosmetic.

However the question is with the randomness involved in a loot box, does it constitute as gambling? That is currently a topic that is being debated, but over in Belgium, a report from VTM Nieuws (via GameSpot) has revealed that the local authorities are investigating titles such as EA’s Star Wars: Battlefront 2 and Blizzard’s Overwatch to determine if these loot boxes constitutes as gambling.

While Blizzard has yet to comment on the investigation, EA has released a statement which reads, “Creating a fair and fun game experience is of critical importance to EA. The crate mechanics of Star Wars Battlefront II are not gambling. A player’s ability to succeed in the game is not dependent on purchasing crates. Players can also earn crates through playing the game and not spending any money at all. Once obtained, players are always guaranteed to receive content that can be used in game.”

This is probably not what EA wants right now, especially with the various criticisms they are facing over Battlefront 2 in which many players aren’t too happy with the loot box/microtransaction system in place.

Belgian Authorities Investigating Star Wars: Battlefront 2 Loot Boxes , original content from Ubergizmo. Read our Copyrights and terms of use.

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World Of Warcraft To Phase Out Raid Sets In Upcoming Expansion

Tyler Lee November 14, 2017

Raid armor sets in MMORPGs serve a variety of purposes: one of which is to make players look “cool” where if you see someone walking around in a full raid set, you know that they’ve probably worked really hard to get it. The second reason is also for raid set bonuses, where developers usually encourage players to get multiple items of a set to get extra perks.

This is true in games like Blizzard’s World of Warcraft, but it also seems that Blizzard is kind of over the idea. Speaking to Game Informer at BlizzCon 2017 which took place earlier this month, World of Warcraft game director Ion Hazzikostas revealed that with the upcoming Battle for Azeroth expansion, they will be phasing out raid set bonuses that have been more or less a staple in the game since its inception.

According to Hazzikostas, “With sets and cosmetic appearances we’re always trying new things. We’re currently not planning on carrying forward traditional raid class sets.” He claims that this is because they want to give players more flexibility in choosing their gear, and not be locked into certain pieces for months on end.

“Back in the day, these 8 piece sets you would put together over the course of 6 to 8 months raiding a zone, where now the smaller sets and so many more sources of gear, it’s very common to get 2 or 4 pieces at the start of a tier and it actually kind of locks down those character slots, it limits your choices. It feels like more of a drawback than a strength at this point.” World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth still does not have a release date set yet, but given Blizzard’s past releases, we’re probably looking at some time in 2018.

World Of Warcraft To Phase Out Raid Sets In Upcoming Expansion , original content from Ubergizmo. Read our Copyrights and terms of use.

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Blizzard Announces Free Overwatch Weekend For 17-20 November

Tyler Lee November 12, 2017

While most of Blizzard’s games have included a trial edition of the game where players get to try before they buy, the same cannot be said for the company’s latest franchise, Overwatch. However Blizzard has been a pretty good sport about letting players try the game before buying through free weekend events.

For those who might have missed out on the previous free weekends, you’ll be pleased to learn that Blizzard has recently announced that from the 17-20 November, Overwatch will be going free-to-play once again. This means that players who didn’t buy the game will be able to play it over the weekend and decide if they want to spend their money on it.

According to Blizzard, “For this free weekend, we’re making Overwatch’s full roster of 26 heroes and 16 maps available for play in a variety of modes, including Quick Play, Custom Games, and the Arcade. Players will also have the ability to level up, earn Loot Boxes, and unlock a variety of different customization options. Plus, if you decide to purchase Overwatch after test driving the game, you’ll get to keep any progress that you made during the weekend.”

Blizzard notes that if players want to continue their progress, they’ll have to use the same account they did when they participated in the free weekend event. We expect that Blizzard will continue to host free weekends for the foreseeable future, although we have heard in the past that Blizzard could be considering a trial version of the game.

Blizzard Announces Free Overwatch Weekend For 17-20 November , original content from Ubergizmo. Read our Copyrights and terms of use.

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Activision Optimistic About The Idea Of An ‘Overwatch’ Movie

Tyler Lee November 12, 2017

Video game movies have unfortunately over the years gotten a bad reputation, and so far despite Hollywood’s best attempts, such movie adaptations have never really been pulled off well, but it hasn’t stopped studios from trying. In fact publish Activision seems to be pretty optimistic about the idea of an Overwatch movie.

Speaking to MCV, Activision’s Head of Consumer Products Group Tim Kilpin was quoted as saying, “We would like that very much,” when asked about the idea of an Overwatch movie. However while the publisher does seem to like the idea, there’s no guarantee that it will ever be made a reality.

That being said, we wouldn’t be surprised if they did. Blizzard has been releasing animated shorts for Overwatch which have been extremely well-crafted and well-received, and the story behind the game is also a rather compelling one, so to explore the idea further with a movie doesn’t really seem like a stretch.

However whether or not it will break free from the “curse” of video game movies remains to be seen. Blizzard’s previous attempt with a Warcraft movie was something of a mixed success. While it did hit number one in several countries and even beat out Star Wars in China, the reviews weren’t particularly favorable, and it seemed to be enjoyed mostly by fans of the series.

Activision Optimistic About The Idea Of An ‘Overwatch’ Movie , original content from Ubergizmo. Read our Copyrights and terms of use.

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Overwatch’s New Hero ‘Moira’ Is Live On The PTR

Tyler Lee November 7, 2017

Over the weekend during BlizzCon 2017, Blizzard announced that they will be introducing a new hero to Overwatch in the form of Moira who has been described as a support/healer hero. Now Blizzard did not mention when Moira would be added to the game, but as we have seen in the past, Blizzard usually trials new heroes, maps, and features out on the PTR before release.

It seems that Moira is no exception and the good news is that if you participate in the Overwatch PTR, you’ll be pleased to learn that Moira has been added to the PTR and is now playable. However note that the PTR is basically Blizzard’s way of beta testing new features to their games which means that what you see now might not necessarily represent the final release, but it will give you an idea of how the character should play.

There is still no release date for Moira yet, but we’ll definitely keep an eye out for more those details when they become available. That being said, participating in the Overwatch PTR is pretty easy. All you need is a copy of the game and your account has to be in good standing, meaning you haven’t been suspended or banned.

We should also point out that the PTR is only available for PC gamers, so if you’re playing Overwatch on a console you’d be out of luck. Details on how to take part in the Overwatch PTR can be found on the Overwatch website.

Overwatch’s New Hero ‘Moira’ Is Live On The PTR , original content from Ubergizmo. Read our Copyrights and terms of use.

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Blizzard Created A ‘Strike Team’ To End Overwatch Player Harassment

Tyler Lee November 7, 2017

Blizzard is pretty serious about making Overwatch a staple in the eSports scene, so much so that they have had a zero tolerance policy on cheaters right from the start. However there are other issues with the game that they’ve had to deal with, such as players harassing other players.

So much so that according to Overwatch’s director Jeff Kaplan, he told the folks at Kotaku that Blizzard actually formed a “strike team” whose goal is to combat all the toxic behavior that stems from multiplayer games, including cheating, hacking, griefing, harassing, and more. While Kaplan declined to get into specifics, he asserted that they are doing something about it.

According to Kaplan, “We’re not sitting here with our heads in the sand. You have concerns, and your concerns are now one of our top priorities. If that means the thing we’re gonna focus on as much as Moira and Blizzard World is toxicity, then we’re gonna do it.” He also adds that players who are found to repeat their bad behavior will be booted from the game for good.

Kaplan also stated that there are plans to introduce notifications in-game whenever a player who has been reported has been hit with actions, like a suspension/silence/ban. The idea is that they want players to know that reporting actually does make a difference and that action is being taken.

Blizzard Created A ‘Strike Team’ To End Overwatch Player Harassment , original content from Ubergizmo. Read our Copyrights and terms of use.

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Blizzard Isn’t Ruling Out Hearthstone For The Nintendo Switch

Tyler Lee November 6, 2017

Blizzard’s Hearthstone is a game that seems to have struck a balance on all the platforms it is available on. It is perfect as a desktop game, but given the gameplay style, it also makes it a perfect game on the go, which is why Blizzard chose to launch it on mobile phones and tablets, but what about the Nintendo Switch?

According to a recent interview with Trusted Reviews at BlizzCon 2017, Hearthstone’s senior game designer Peter Whalen said that launching it on the Switch was not outside the realm of possibility. He was quoted as saying, “I dunno, I don’t think anyone is working on it, but I wouldn’t rule it out either. Moving to tablets and phones was awesome. It made Hearthstone way more accessible for way, way more people, which is fantastic.”

This is in line with an interview from earlier this year in which the game’s other senior designers said that launching the game on the Switch was a possibility and a discussion worth having. Whalen also added, “If there are other consoles or platforms that are good for us then that’s absolutely something we’d explore in time.”

Late last year there was speculation that Hearthstone could arrive for the Switch, but it turned out that it was merely Blizzard trolling us. In the meantime Blizzard hasn’t ruled out the possibility of Overwatch coming to the Switch either, but whether or not it will actually come is a different story.

Blizzard Isn’t Ruling Out Hearthstone For The Nintendo Switch , original content from Ubergizmo. Read our Copyrights and terms of use.

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World Of Warcraft Classic Could Take A While To Launch

Tyler Lee November 6, 2017

Following the legal issues with the fan-run vanilla World of Warcraft servers last year and Blizzard’s radio silence following the meeting with the developers, the company certainly surprised us all when they officially announced World of Warcraft Classic servers at BlizzCon 2017 that took place over the weekend.

Now if you were excited by the news, it seems that you might want to practice a bit of patience because the World of Warcraft Classic servers could take a while before they are launched. This is according to an interview with Eurogamer in which the game’s executive producer J. Allen Brack stated that they are still figuring some stuff out.

According to Brack, “The important announcement today was: we’re doing this. We’ve heard the community, we’ve heard our own internal teams, we’ve heard all the comments over the years. When it comes to the details, we don’t know all of the answers just yet.” He also adds that one of the ways Blizzard plans on approaching the Classic servers is also by talking to the community and see what they want from it.

He adds, “There’s also the fact that now we’ve announced this, we might want to partner with the community on some of those answers. WOW changed a lot in the first two years, before The Burning Crusade came along, and so, how exactly should it work? Those are questions we need to talk about, for sure.” Given Blizzard’s penchant for taking their time with their games, plus with the World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth expansion having just been announced as well, we wouldn’t be surprised if this will take a while to get off the ground.

World Of Warcraft Classic Could Take A While To Launch , original content from Ubergizmo. Read our Copyrights and terms of use.

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Blizzard Shares Early Overwatch Development Footage

Tyler Lee November 6, 2017

Unless you’re a developer who has developed games in the past, chances are as a gamer what you’ve seen is usually the finished and polished product. Now obviously finished games look nothing like back when they were undergoing development, but for those who are interested in peeking behind the curtain, Blizzard is happy to oblige.

At BlizzCon 2017, Overwatch’s director Jeff Kaplan took to the stage where he shared various footage of Overwatch during the early development days. Safe to say that the Overwatch that Blizzard was developing back then looks nothing like the final game that gamers around the world have come to know and love. The mechanics of certain characters were different, but that’s natural and just part of the development and balancing process, where developers figure out what works and what doesn’t.

It is rather raw footage but it goes to show how far the game has come since back then. For those unfamiliar, Overwatch was born of the ashes of the company’s previous MMORPG that was only known as Project Titan and was heralded as a next-gen MMO. The project was ultimately scrapped but Blizzard decided to salvage what they could from it, and the end result was Overwatch which has since gone on to become yet another highly-successful Blizzard franchise. In any case if you have a few minutes to spare, then check out the video above for some behind-the-scenes footage of Overwatch’s development.

Blizzard Shares Early Overwatch Development Footage , original content from Ubergizmo. Read our Copyrights and terms of use.