Heroes of the Storm
Blizzard’s Heroes of the Storm may have some aspects in common with traditional MOBAs, but in addition to what appears to be a strong focus on accessibility, they’re breaking all the rules when it comes to character design. While players in the technical alpha have already gotten a taste of Abathur, who influences the war from across the battlefield and plays a lot more like a RTS commander than a traditional hero, things are about to get a lot more chaotic when Murky arrives. We caught up with Heroes of the Storm at PAX East 2014 and learned more about this special murloc.
Murky’s signature ability is laying an egg. Not too exciting? Murky will respawn at the egg everytime he dies unless it’s destroyed, making him an amazing pusher and a tactical aggressor. Early game, maybe the best choice is to hide the egg behind your towers. Mid-game maybe the jungle would be a great place to respawn to. End-game? You can plop the egg sneakily into the opposing base to maintain a continued assault.
Murky may not equal other characters in raw stats and strength, but can conduct a terrifying war of attrition in lane as he doesn’t really mind taking tons of damage or even dying to get in there and harass heroes and towers. This kind of character design with potentially infinite instant resurrections is incredibly bold, and along with Abathur goes a long way to distance Heroes of the Storm from other games in the genre.
“There’s this mind game that Murky’s playing with everyone else,” says game director Dustin Browder. “He’s basically built as a sieger. He’s not a ganker. He’s meant to go out there, find Diablo, throw some mines, die. And he just keeps coming back. As the Murky player, you’re looking to die.”
I asked Browder if there were going to be other weird heroes. While he emphasized that there need to be core heroes and skillsets out there, there were a number of non-traditional characters in the works. “We’re not done yet. This is going to go on. We’re going to do more moving forward, we want to do as much unusual stuff as possible. So Lost Vikings, three heroes in one how does THAT work?”