Heroes of the Storm has been out for a while now and Blizzard has been adding new content to the game at a fast clip. With the recent release of the 2.0 patch which included the new Hanamura map based on the map of the same name in Overwatch, the influx of new players to the game carries with it a problem: learning the various objectives and compositions for specific maps is proving to be a little difficult.
Currently, Heroes of the Storm has a map pool made up of 13 different maps that all have their own unique objectives and themes. Because that map number is pretty high, new players may find the game to be a bit overwhelming because of the amount of content available for it now. This news comes from a blog post on the official Heroes of the Storm website.
When Heroes first launched, it only had a handful of Battlegrounds. We began to debate the possibility of a rotation in earnest about the time the map pool reached double its original size. Longtime players may have noticed that whenever we’ve introduced a new Battleground, we’ve reduced the size of the map pool to funnel more players into the Nexus’s latest challenge. With the launch of D.Va, we decided it was time to formalize our approach to keeping the game fresh without overloading players by introducing regular Battleground rotations.
Blizzard Entertainment has lowered a number of maps available in matchmaking game modes from 13 to 9. This also extends to the game’s ranked mode (Hero League). Blizzard is planning to rotate the map pool three times over a season, shaking up the meta and needing players to adapt to the new maps and the team compositions needed to win games effectively. Starting off, Blizzard is aiming for 3 rotations during each competitive season with nine battlegrounds per rotation.
To ease new players into the game, Blizzard has changed the game’s tutorial so that new players will always play their first match on the Cursed Hollow map. After new players have completed their first game, they are put into a small pool made up of some of the maps available in the current rotation. Playing a map in this pool will unlock the next map available in the rotation until all maps are unlocked.
We’ve also heard lots of feedback about the map selection process. We’ve spent time reviewing and have come up with some ways to improve this process moving forward, which should result in a healthy and fun map pool with each rotation.
Which maps will be chosen for a new rotation depends on the difficulty of the mechanics, the variety of each map and a number of lanes in any given map. This system also enables Blizzard to periodically reintroduce reworked battlegrounds, like the Haunted Mines map, to the live game.
I want to thank our players for all the feedback we received during the Heroes 2.0 Open Beta, and following the release of Hanamura. We believe our approach to Battleground rotations will result in a better learning experience for newer players while keeping a diverse pool of Battlegrounds for everyone to enjoy. As with everything we do on Heroes, we will continue to learn and improve upon this system. We love the enthusiasm and passion in the Heroes community and with your help, we’ll continue to make Heroes of the Storm the best game we possibly can!
For more info on Heroes of the Storm 2.0, you can read our article on it right here.
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