Blizzard’s biggest fan event of the year, BlizzCon, is here once again and during the opening ceremony Blizzard had plenty to share.
Just like usual, Blizzard packed in a variety of announcements about all its games, and even some of its partners games, at the beginning of the show, to give fans a preview about what exactly they would see over the next few days. The opening’s highlights included a couple of brand new games, as well as a brand new character being added to Heroes of the Storm that’s entirely unique to that game and universe.
While Blizzard games were obviously the star of the show, the opening’s preview event even included a special announcement from Bungie that Destiny 2 would be free for PC players to own as long as they get it before Nov. 18.
With all this news going out in such a short time, we broke down the top five announcements from BlizzCon 2018’s opening ceremony.
WARCRAFT III IS GETTING REMASTERED
One of the most important games of all time is coming back with Warcraft III: Reforged. This remake of the classic real-time strategy game will feature a full overhaul of the game’s graphics and systems, while preserving the mechanics that made Warcraft III so good when it was released back in 2002. Based on the announcement, it also appears that the game is getting an updated ladder system to help players better compete online in competitive play as well as an updated map editor, which were the original tools that helped create the entire MOBA genre. Warcraft III: Reforged doesn’t have a concrete release date yet, but Blizzard said it would be out sometime next year.
ASHE IS OVERWATCH’S NEW HERO AND SHE LOOKS AMAZING
McCree has always seemed a little out of place among the Overwatch cast. It never seemed like he was the only one in this future dressing like a cowboy, so it seemed like just a matter of time until we met someone that he had a connection to. Turns out, that someone is Ashe. The leader of a gang called the Deadlock gang, Ashe is just as dangerous as McCree and about twice as mobile. She’s got a repeater rifle for taking enemies down at range, a shotgun assisted jump, a bundle of dynamite to help clear out space and even a murderous robot companion named B.O.B.
THERE’S A BRAND NEW DIABLO GAME, BUT IT’S ONLY ON MOBILE
There’s no denying that fans were pretty excited at the prospect of new Diablo, and it’s here … sort of. This wasn’t, exactly, the game that many fans might have been hoping for, but it does look great. The game takes place between Diablo 2 and Diablo 3 and looks to show us some of the stories that led up to the most recent game. Based on the footage that was shown, most of the classes, which are the same six from Diablo 3, will play about the same way, with a few additional spells for each. While Blizzard was careful to keep expectations low for this announcement, the game looks good and it appears that there’s more coming for the series sometime down the road.
HEARTHSTONE’S NEXT EXPANSION IS ALL ABOUT TROLLS
A new Hearthstone expansion is here and it’s called Rastakhan Rumble. As anyone who’s been playing World of Warcraft recently knows, that means it’s going to be all about trolls this time around. Speaking of which, this is also going to be the first time that a Hearthstone expansion is keeping up with current WoW lore, which means there could be some exciting storytelling going on in the expansion. As for the new cards, not much has been revealed yet, but it appears that each class is going to get its own specific legendary cards that help compliment the styles that they are best at. Rastakhan Rumble will be out on Dec. 4, meaning fans won’t have to wait long to get their hands on all the new cards.
WORLD OF WARCRAFT CLASSIC IS COMING OUT THIS SUMMER
World of Warcraft has been trucking along for 14 years now and while the latest expansion, Battle for Azeroth, didn’t get much play at the opening ceremony, the other version of WoW did. That version is World of Warcraft: Classic, a project by Blizzard to bring the game back to (something like) its roots. The game brings WoW all the way back to patch 1.12, which is essentially the last patch before the game’s first expansion, Burning Crusade. Blizzard also announced during the opening ceremony that the standard WoW subscription will also work for Classic. This is a project that some extremely passionate fans can’t wait to play, and today Blizzard let them know that summer 2019 would be their chance to play the full game. While that date might be right around the corner, fans at BlizzCon or who purchased the Virtual Ticket will also get the chance to check out the game’s beta today.