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Heroes of the Storm alpha patch notes


A huge patch for Heroes of the Storm has dropped today. In fact, it's so big that you'll need to uninstall your current Heroes and reinstall the game completely. You might find this odd, but in a alpha test, anything is game (and remember this is still an alpha test).

There are an absolute ton of UI and character changes. It's clear that Blizzard is working hard behind the scenes to make this game as friendly and competitive as possible. There really isn't a stone that they don't turn over and do something with.

You can find the complete patch notes after the break, and look at the hero changes over on Blizzard's site.

Blizzard Entertainment
User Interface

Rejoin Game

A very early version of rejoin functionality has been implemented. Please know that development for the Rejoin system is ongoing, and this feature will likely see changes and improvements as alpha testing continues.
  • Players are now able to rejoin a game after disconnecting or closing the client.
  • Players who disconnect or otherwise leave a game will be prompted to rejoin upon logging back in so long as that game is still in progress.
As mentioned above, this is a very early look at the Rejoin system, and you may encounter bugs during playtesting. If you do encounter any issues with the Rejoin system, please let us know by writing up a bug report in the Tech Alpha Bug Report Forum.

Inactive Player Removal

Very early implementation for removing inactive players from a game has been added with today's Tech Alpha patch. Please note that much like Rejoin above, this system is a work in progress, and will likely receive changes in the future. Here's how it works right now:
  • If a player does not issue a game command for 150 seconds during a match, that player will receive an inactivity warning via chat.
  • If a player does not issue a game command within 30 seconds after receiving a warning, that player will be dropped from the game and returned to the Heroes login screen.
  • Inactive players who are dropped in this way will be prompted to rejoin from the out-of-game menus after logging back in.
  • As with leaving or disconnecting from a game before it is finished, the A.I. will take over the dropped player's hero until that player rejoins the game. Additionally, that player will earn no experience points, quest credit, or rewards if they do not rejoin the game before it concludes

Matchmaking

Rules have been added to help encourage the matchmaker to create well-rounded team compositions. These rules are as follows:
  • No more than 3 Warriors.
  • No more than 4 Assassins.
  • No more than 2 Support.
  • No more than 2 Specialists.
  • No more than 3 Melee heroes.

Please note that this does not prevent full parties from using any composition they prefer.
Team compositions which fall outside of the rules above can still be formed with partial parties.

For example: A three person party that enters the queue as 3 Support heroes is allowed, but will not be grouped with any more Supports.

If a party has spent longer than 6 minutes in the matchmaking queue, the team composition rules may be broken in order to find a match.

Quick Cast

A Quick Cast option has been added and can be accessed in the Gameplay Options menu.

Select one of three Quick Cast settings from the dropdown list. Each setting works as follows:
  • Off (default): Press an ability hotkey to enter targeting mode and then left click to cast the ability.
  • On: Press an ability hotkey to instantly cast that ability in the direction, or at the location, of the mouse cursor.
  • On Release: Press an ability hotkey to enter targeting mode. Release the hotkey to cast that ability in the direction, or at the location, of the mouse cursor.

In-Game UI

The in-game UI has received an extensive overhaul and many elements have been changed or moved.

General
  • An in-game timer has been added to the top center of the screen.
  • Team levels have been moved to the top center of the screen.
  • Palace Health bars have been moved to the top center of the screen and both Health bars will now display simultaneously as soon as a Palace takes damage.
  • Health and Resource bars have been moved to the right of the Hero Portrait.
  • Battleground objective counters have been moved to the bottom right corner of the screen below the minimap.
  • Minimaps are now much larger and their borders have been removed.
  • Death timer portraits now stack and will expand on mouseover.
  • Target panels have been removed and will no longer display upon clicking a unit.
  • Battleground help screen pop-ups have been removed and no longer display when a game begins.
  • The Solo Kills category has been removed from the end-of-game Score Screen.
  • Hexagons.

Ability Buttons
  • The row of standard ability buttons has received several look and feel improvements.
  • Activated Talent buttons have been moved above the row of standard ability buttons.

Talent Selection
  • New Talent notification is now much more apparent.
  • The Hero portrait is now a button which can be clicked to bring up a detailed Talent selection window.
  • A Quick Talent selector has been added and can be accessed by pressing "Ctrl" key when a new Talent is available.
  • Talents can also be selected quickly via hotkeys by pressing "Ctrl" and the corresponding number key (1 – 5.)

Cursor
  • The mouse cursor now changes type and color based on the target: allied, enemy, and untargetable.
  • Different cursor types are also used to distinguish attack and ability commands.

Social Features

Character Portraits
  • Character portrait selection has been added to the profile screen.
  • Access the profile screen by clicking the character portrait in the top right corner of the home screen, and then click the "Change Portrait" button to select a new portrait.

Parties
  • The party panel has been moved to the top right corner of the screen and character portraits are displayed for current party members.
  • The menu button has been moved to the bottom right corner of the screen next to the Friends List button.
  • The party panel no longer appears during Hero Select, but party controls can still be accessed by right clicking a player's selected hero.
  • The "Play with a Friend" bonus is now detailed in profile tooltips.
  • Players can now request a party invitation.

Looking for Party Panel

A new Looking for Party panel has been added to the home screen and the Friends List.
  • The Looking for Party panel will display players who are looking to join a party, as well as existing parties in search of more members.
  • Players can indicate that they would like to join a party by clicking the checkbox in the Looking for Party panel on the home screen or in the friends list.
  • Players of similar skill will have a star displayed next to their names in the panel.

Friends list
  • Messages can now be broadcast to all friends using the new text box found at the top of the Friends List.
  • The Friends List now displays what each friend is currently doing in the Heroes of the Storm client.
  • Hover the mouse cursor over a player's name in the Friends List to display whether or not that player is currently in a party.

Chat
  • Chat windows now disappear instantly rather than fading out and individual lines of chat now fade over time.
  • Objects behind the chat window can be clicked so long as no text is present.

New User Help Tips
  • Several new pop-up tips have been added in which Uther helps to further guide new players through user interface features.
  • Uther's help tips can now be closed by clicking the "X" in the top right corner of the pop-up.

Sound

Voiceover
  • All Heroes now have complete voiceover kits.
  • All Battleground characters (Blackheart, the Raven Lord, etc.) have received new voiceover and have replaced the previous default game announcer.

Music
  • More than 35 minutes of live recorded music have been added across all current Battlegrounds.

Sound Effects
  • New sound effects have been added for recently released Heroes.
  • Several UI sounds have received updated sound effects.

Shop

Heroes
  • Murky has been added to the Shop.

Skins
  • Grunty Murky and Storm Lord Falstad have been added to the Shop.

Bundles

All previously released Bundles have been removed from the Shop. New Bundles have been added to the Shop:
  • Grunty Murky Bundle
  • Kaijo Diablo Bundle
  • Medic Uther Bundle
  • Prince Arthas Bundle
  • Tyrael Elite Bundle
  • Zeratul Elite Bundle


Design and Gameplay

Snowballing
  • Additional efforts have been made to prevent snowballing for teams that are down by 3 or more levels during a game.

Raven Court
  • The Curse mechanic on this map was a major contributor to snowballing
  • To reduce the snowballing on this Battleground the Curse no longer reduces building health by 50% when the Curse is active

General
  • The team level cap has been increased from 25 to 30
  • Mount speed has been increased from 20% to 40% and mounts no longer gain speed per level.
  • Attack orders are no longer cleared after using most abilities
  • Activated Talents can now be self-cast by pressing "Alt" and the associated number key
  • Hero rings have been added underfoot to improve hero clarity
  • Mana bars now display a preview for the amount of mana being restored over time while a hero is under the effects of an ability that returns mana (Malfurion's Innervate)

Battlegrounds

General
  • The Grave Golem's root ability now prioritizes MULEs
  • Knight Mercenary Camp respawn time has been increased from 240 to 270 seconds
Dragon Shire
  • The Dragon Knight now scales more aggressively as the game time increases
Haunted Mines
  • There have been significant layout changes to the jungle area of this map, including mercenary camp locations
  • Two Watch Towers have also been added to the jungle
  • Skeletons and the golem no long auto-acquire you; you have to engage them first now
Bug Fixes

General
  • Clicking "Reset Heroic" in Try Mode no longer causes the selected hero skin to revert to default.
  • Corrected a number of typos across multiple aspects of the game.
  • Fixed an issue which could cause performance spikes related to sound loading and playback.
  • Made improvements which should help with certain Out Of Memory errors.

Battlegrounds
  • Combat sounds and effects are no longer audible, nor visible, through the Fog of War.
  • Dragon Shire Mercenary Camp respawn timers are no longer drastically reduced when the Dragon Knight expires.
  • Fixed an issue on Dragon Shire that could cause Brightwing to clip into the terrain after being punted by the Dragon Knight's Savage Charge ability.
  • Heroes should no longer attempt to path through enemy Gates when given a long-distance move command toward objectives on the opposite side of a Battleground.
  • Pings targeting the Dragon Knight no longer cause heroes to refer to the Dragon Knight as a Mercenary Camp.
  • The northwest Knight Mercenary Camp on Blackheart's Bay now properly displays a banner which indicates difficulty and description text.

User Interface
  • Ability targeting reticules now cancel immediately upon a hero's death.
  • Corrected an issue which could cause purchased items to become unusable in-game.
  • Fixed an issue that could cause players to enter a locked state while navigating through menus.
  • The Friends List no longer becomes stuck when using mouse wheel scroll.
  • The in-game Menu button's mouseover tooltip no longer always displays a framerate of 0.
  • Witch Doctor's Hero Select icon now has an appropriate tooltip description on mouseover.

Heroes and Talents
  • Abathur now properly earns Takedown credit while using Symbiote on an ally that is nearby enemy hero deaths.
  • Abathur can no longer hold an objective point on Dragon Shire from the location he was in prior to casting Ultimate Evolution.
  • A.I. heroes should now respond more appropriately to an enemy Uther in Eternal Devotion form.
  • An Illidan clone created by Abathur's Ultimate Evolution now receives the appropriate Health bonus after casting Metamorphosis.
  • Banshees summoned by the Raynor's Raiders Heroic Ability no longer sit idle if the ability is cast while Raynor is attacking a target.
  • Graphic effects for Nova's Triple Tap no longer persist on screen when Triple Tap is cast on a hero that dies before the ability completes.
  • Lili's Timeless Creature Talent now correctly increases the duration of Cloud Serpent when it is cast on allied heroes.
  • Nova's Triple Tap missiles no longer stop chasing a target that has moved a long distance from Nova after the ability is cast.
  • Overkill no longer continues to target or damage enemy heroes that Tychus has lost sight of, such as Tassadar using Void Shift, or Abathur casting Ultimate Evolution.
  • Placing Abathur's Toxic Nests within the enemy safe zone no longer causes intermittent game freezes.
  • Searing Attacks no longer drains mana for each target hit by attacks that cleave.
  • Tassadar's Oracle ability now properly reveals cloaked enemy heroes.
  • Tyrande's Lunar Flare ability no longer shares a cooldown with the Searing Arrows activated Talent.
  • The game camera no longer snaps to Abathur's location after a cloned Witch Doctor's Ravenous Spirit expires while Camera Lock is enabled.


Filed under: Heroes of the Storm

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