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Posts with tag StarCraft-2

StarCraft II world championships to be held in Anaheim Convention Center Arena

BlizzCon is expanding into new territory this year. While the StarCraft II tournaments have historically taken place in the convention hall, the StarCraft II WCS Global Finals will now be held in the Anaheim Convention Center Arena. All BlizzCon ticket holders will have access to the tournament, but Blizzard will also be selling approximately 1,000 additional tickets for the finals at a price of $25 each (plus a $2.37 service fee). Note: those additional tickets do not grant access to BlizzCon, but only the Loge and Terrace balcony sections of the Arena.

The tickets will go on sale via Eventbrite beginning October 7. If you're interested, we highly recommend Blizzard's event FAQ which includes additional details about ticketing.

Filed under: BlizzCon

BlizzCon 2014 in-game goodies sneak peek

Last week, we had our first glimpse at Grommloc, the BlizzCon 2014 in-game pet. Today, Blizzard has revealed the remaining in-game rewards.
  • Hearthstone Blizzard Entertainment-themed card back. The design incorporates elements from the compass inlaid around the infamous orc statue.
  • StarCraft II New portraits and a Heroes of the Storm-themed decal. One portrait depicts Hierarch Artanis. The other is yet to be unveiled.
  • Diablo III Warlords of Draenor-themed weapon transmogrifications. Each class will receive its own weapon, but only the demon hunter, barbarian, and monk are displayed. Kargath's bladefist and Blackhand's hammer are easily recognizable in the image. Only available for Windows/Mac version of the game.
  • Heroes of the Storm Nexus Mount and Nexus Brawler portrait
The official BlizzCon site has a more detailed image of each than you see in the header above. It being BlizzCon and all, we can't help but wildly speculate a little: given the protoss theme of the StarCraft portrait, and the fact that one of the portraits is still veiled in mystery, could we finally see a Legacy of the Void announcement? Nearly three years passed between the launch of Wings of Liberty and Heart of the Swarm. Half of that time has passed since Heart of the Swarm's release, which would make this pretty good timing for an announcement -- though certainly not a release date.

Filed under: BlizzCon

Enter to win exclusive Comic-Con prizes from Blizzard

If you aren't lucky enough to be heading to San Diego for Comic-Con 2014, good news -- you can still get yourself some Comic-Con goodies. Blizzard will be giving away 25 Comic-Con goodie bags chock full of cool and exclusive Blizzard merchandise. To enter, simply follow the link provided on the official announcement post, and earn entries by completing a variety of social actions using the contest app.

Winners will receive a Heroes of the Storm T-shirt and lanyard, a Diablo Whimsyshire Treasure Goblin, a Starcraft Cute But Deadly Cloaking Zeratul, a Starcraft Funko Pop! Vinyl Primal Kerrigan, and a Warcraft Nether Faerie Dragon Plush. The contest runs until July 27, so you have plenty of time to get plenty of entries in. For more information, and the official rules, head to the contest app page. Good luck to all who enter!

Filed under: Blizzard, Contests

Activision-Blizzard sues over StarCraft II cheats

Activision Blizzard logo
On May 19th Blizzard filed a suit with the Central District of California over the practice of players who create cheats for multiplayer mode in StarCraft II. In particular, the suit names the "ValiantChaos MapHack" as one of, but not the only, hack being targeted by the litigation. The suit claims that the cheats undermine the nature of multiplayer gameplay and "disrupt or impair the online experience for purchasers of the computer game."

The suit targets the programmers behind the hacks, demanding compensation for the copyright infringement inherent in the cheats' modifications of the game. As noted in the BBC report, this lawsuit recalls a similar one from 1990s, wherein Nintendo unsuccessfully sued the creators of the Games Genie, also on the grounds of copyright violation. That lawsuit, however, took place in the days before widespread online multiplayer gaming environments, and it will be interesting to see how much, or how little, this case echoes that one.

Filed under: Blizzard, News items, StarCraft 2

Riot allegedly patents Spectator Mode camera element

According to a Reddit thread today, Riot, creator of League of Legends, has had a patent approved for what the poster describes as the "self-moving camera" within their spectator mode. The patent documents spell out the specific thing Riot is claiming patent on, describing a spectator mode that has an element described as follows:
...the spectator server is further configured to calculate an interest value associated with each avatar and direct the user's view to the avatar having the highest interest value.
The online multiuser game system of claim 1, wherein the spectator server is further configured to monitor data affecting the interest values and shift the view to another avatar if it gains the highest interest value.
You can read the full text of the claim on the online document. Based on the Reddit thread, and reading the documents, it seems that this claim is very specific, dealing with a camera which the game automatically moves to whichever character has the most interesting action going on. According to the second part of the claim, it will also monitor data on what is the most interesting, and shift its view accordingly.

The impact of this patent on other games, particularly Blizzard games, is open for discussion. Should Blizzard wish to introduce a self-moving camera with a background AI that monitors the "interest levels" of the actions of specific avatars, then it seems that might be a problem. That is, of course, if the patent withstands further scrutiny and any cases brought against it.

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Filed under: News items

StarCraft II Arcade now free to play

Good news for Blizzard fans looking for more games to play -- the StarCraft II Arcade is now completely free. StarCraft II is not only well known for the game and tournament play, but also for its creative community. The game comes with a map editor that allows you to customize and craft your own creations, using Blizzard art assets and maps to put together whatever game your creative mind happens to dream up. These creations are all available as part of the StarCraft II Arcade, a massive index of player-created games.

So what's in the Arcade? Everything from custom maps and missions to StarCraft-themed versions of popular games like Bejeweled and Pictionary. Full access to all games in the Arcade was previously limited only to those who purchased StarCraft II. With the launch of patch 2.1, all games in the Arcade have now been made available to anyone with a Battle.net account -- even games that previously required the Heart of the Swarm. To access the Arcade, simply download and install the free trial version of StarCraft II, no purchase necessary.

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Filed under: News items, StarCraft 2

Can't wait for more Warcraft? Check out the Alliance and Horde StarCraft 2 mod

Have you been waiting for Warcraft 4? And waiting and waiting? Then you'll be glad to know that intrepid modder StevenLuo has brought Warcraft aesthetics to StarCraft 2 using the SC2 Editor. The finished product, WOW RTS: Alliance and Horde (or WAH for short), features 2 factions, 16 units, 18 heroes, and 3 maps -- Lost Temple (2V2), Crossroads (1V1), and Ashenvale (1V1) -- which you can play on with others or against the AI.

Can't wait to get started? Launch the StarCraft 2 Arcade and search for WAH to bring up the maps. The initial download is 245MB, but once you have all the assets, the individual maps are pretty small. So what are you waiting for? Get Warcrafting!

Filed under: StarCraft 2

The BlizzCon Artists' Stage wants your questions!

The BlizzCon Artists Stage wants your questions!
The Artists' Stage will once again be making a showing at BlizzCon, featuring presentations and live demonstrations by many of Blizzard's master artists throughout both days of BlizzCon. This year, they are looking for your questions for the artists and participants featured on stage. Those of you interested in quizzing Blizzard's artists can submit your questions on the official BlizzCon forums.

In addition to the request for questions, Blizzard has released a full schedule of events for the Artists' Stage. And for those that have found the Burdens of Shaohao miniseries a delight, Lead Story Developer Micky Neilson, Senior Art Editor Doug Gregory and Senior Illustrator Laurel Austin will be hosting The Making of The Burdens of Shaohao Friday evening at 6pm. For the full list of powerhouse artists that will be making appearances at the Artists' Stage, as well as the event schedule, check out the official BlizzCon website -- and don't forget to submit your questions while you're there!


Filed under: News items, BlizzCon

StarCraft Universe hits funding goal

In the midst of all the excitement over patch 5.4's release, you could be forgiven if you've forgotten about StarCraft Universe, the Upheaval Arts fan project to create an MMO-type game for StarCraft II. The plot of the game revolves around an alternate ending to StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty, where Kerrigan couldn't stop the hybrid's assault and the Protoss were defeated. StarCraft Universe tells the story of the aftermath.

If that sounds intriguing to you, know that the project has hit its Kickstarter funding goal, so StarCraft Universe is on its way to fruition. For those of you who still want to contribute and earn some extra perks, there are a few hours remaining on the campaign, but don't delay, time is quickly running out. If you've been clamoring for a StarCraft-themed MMO, this is a project you'll definitely want to check out!

Filed under: News items, StarCraft 2

StarCraft II Art Tools Open Beta available

StarCraft II Art Tools Open Beta available
If you're a 3D artist looking for some new toys to get that creative streak going, Blizzard has just the thing for you. The StarCraft II Art Tools package is now in open beta, and includes plugins for 3DS Max, along with a ton of StarCraft II source art files, tutorials, and documentation to get you up and running. The art tools package isn't just a new toy from Blizzard -- it's the same tools that the StarCraft II development team used to create Heart of the Swarm.

The tools package allows artistic players to create new models, textures, particle effects, animations, or pretty much any other 3D art asset that you can dream up for the StarCraft II engine. This is, however, a beta -- so there may be bugs with the program. However, Blizzard of course has an official feedback thread for users to leave bug reports and suggestions for improvement. To participate in the open beta, simply visit the announcement page, download the program in either 32-bit or 64-bit version, grab the documentation, and get to creating!

Filed under: Blizzard, News items, StarCraft 2

The Queue: BlizzCon, daily quests, gnome heads, and more

Welcome back to The Queue, the daily Q&A column in which the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Alex Ziebart will be your host today.

Let's go right to the questions!

mikkelsdk asked:

Considering Blizzard has a lot of things on the table currently (Heartstone, Blizzard All-Stars, Titan, Next WoW Expansion, Diablo 3 xpac and probably SC2 xpac) which of these aren't we going to hear about at Blizzcon? Titan is a given but have Blizzard talking about Heartstone, All-stars, WoW xpac, Diablo 3 xpac and SC2 xpac is kinda of a long shot.

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Filed under: The Queue

Blizzard purchases IGN Pro League

Blizzard Buys IGN Pro League
Blizzard has bought the technology and other assets related to the IGN Pro League. The future of IPL was up in the air due to IGN layoffs back in February with 1UP, UGO, and Gamespy closing shop. Now we know what the fate of IPL will be. Some members of the team will be moving over to San Francisco to work on "high-quality web and mobile content in support of Blizzard games" but it appears that the actual operations of IPL will be coming to a close. Other members will be joining Blizzard's existing eSports team and possibly assisting them with the recently announced Starcraft 2 World Championship Series.

Personally, I've enjoyed watching the League of Legends and Starcraft 2 tournaments that IPL held. I'm quite sad to see them go as I was impressed by the level of quality in their productions. Best of luck to everyone involved!


Filed under: Blizzard, News items

Lich King easter egg discovered in StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm

Lich King in SC2 Image Editor
"There must always be a Lich King," Bolvar reminded us, and he really, really meant it. Across all realities, in every Blizzard intellectual property, there must be a Lich King. That's right, take a look at that screenshot up there. Yup, that's the Lich King, buried in a sheet of ice somewhere in the Koprulu Sector. Redditor Aunvilgod laments, "I'm just making a map, and I see this..." I'm not sure it's really any major source of concern, though, considering we have recent confirmation that the Zerg would curbstomp the Scourge in a brawl. Then again, that's only good news if you're Zerg. Terrans and Protoss might have a slightly different perspective.

Unsurprisingly, the thread is immediately flooded with cries for a Warcraft 4. I really don't think WoW is going anywhere anytime soon, folks, though I suppose fans can dream.

Filed under: Humor, StarCraft 2

Starcraft II: Heart of the Swarm launch schedule

Starcraft II Heart of the Swarm launch schedule
Starcraft II: Heart of the Swarm officially launches, as the image suggests, on March 12, but, with the game launching at midnight tonight, launch events have kicked off all over the world. The evening of March 11 is when celebrations began in Sydney, Australia, where, at the time of writing, the game has been available for purchase for a full eight hours.

Events are currently taking place in Europe, with activities underway and being broadcast live on Blizzard's official twitch channel right now. The European events include a tournament featuring well-known players such as Stephano, LucifroN, Grubby and White-Ra, who are competing live on stage, mixed in with developer interviews, exclusive content and more!

If you're too late to check out the European streams, which finish at 8pm EST, fear not, because the US events kick off at 9pm PST, with Day9 and Husky kicking off proceedings. There will be live show matches, displaying the new "take command" feature, and new custom games, and two attendees will have the opportunity to play with Suppy and ViBE in a 2v2 pro/am match.

Mike Morhaime, Chris Metzen, Chris Sigaty and Sam Didier will be in attendance at the US event, taking part in developer presentations, custom games and much more. Again, if you weren't able to make it to Irvine to attend the event, this will all be broadcast live via the official Twitch channel. Do check out Blizzard's launch pages for further information on any of the events.


Filed under: Blizzard, StarCraft 2

StarCraft: Kerrigan -- Hope and Vengeance free on Comixology

StarCraft Kerrigan  Hope and Vengeance free on Comixology
This week, we had patch 5.2 to contend with, but next week it's all about the launch of StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm for plenty of players. Blizzard has been slowly releasing promotional material for the new game, including a new cinematic and a pretty fascinating viral advertising campaign called Project Blackstone, which is still being updated as the time ticks down to Heart of the Swarm's launch. And now we have another piece -- a comic about Kerrigan and a glimpse at what she's been through that takes place at some point after she was rescued at the end of Wings of Liberty.

Kerrigan -- Hope and Vengeance #0 is a relatively short comic, but the art and writing is top-notch. And here's the kicker -- it's absolutely free. You don't have to pay for the comic, you simply plunk it in your cart, checkout and read. The comic is a fairly brisk 8 pages, but with a story by Cameron Dayton and some really stunning art by Zoddd, not to mention the absence of a price tag, this is a nice treat for StarCraft fans.

To my knowledge, this is the first time Blizzard's ever offered a free digital comic of this scope. And it does make one wonder.

Read more →

Filed under: Blizzard, News items, StarCraft 2

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