The BlizzCon Virtual Ticket is available now in the Blizzard Shop in the Americans, Europe, Russia, Australia, New Zealand, Taiwan, Korea, and Southeast Asia. Pricing and availability varies by region. It is a good option for people who are unable to attend BlizzCon in person.
For starters, the Virtual Ticket unlocks live access to all the stages at BlizzCon 2017 – and in addition to the game updates, developer discussions, and community contests you’ve come to enjoy, you’ll also get access to events featuring community creators, voice actors, and more. Our new BlizzCon All Access channel will act as your guided tour through the event and around the show floor.
The BlizzCon 2017 Virtual Ticket includes:
- Developer and Community Events
- Costume and Talent Contests
- Closing Ceremony
- Exclusive Interviews
- Behind the Scenes & From the Floor
- Pre-show Video Series (weekly videos)
- Enhanced Esports Viewing
- Goody Bag Discount – Get $10 USD off this year’s BlizzCon Goody Bag (Supplies are limited.)
- In-Game Goodies – Unlock this year’s BlizzCon in-game items for World of Warcraft, Overwatch, Hearthstone, StarCraft II, Diablo III and Heroes of the Storm.
Two in-game goodies are special mounts for World of Warcraft players. The Stormwind Skychaser is the mount for the Alliance, and the Orgrimmar Interceptor is the mount for the Horde. Those items are already available in-game for players who purchase the BlizzCon 2017 Virtual Ticket.
Blizzard Entertainment has a history of creating charity pets that World of Warcraft players can purchase. A percentage of the money raised by players who buy the charity pet goes to a specific charity. Players get a cute pet that can follow their character around in-game.
In the past, the percentage of money that went to a charity from the sale of a charity pet ranged from 50% to 100%. This year, Blizzard released the new charity pet – Shadow fox – early (before BlizzCon 2017 that takes place in November.) Their reason for the early release was because they wanted to act now to help those who were affected by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, or by the flooding in South Asia.
For every Shadow fox adopted between now and December 31, 2017, 100% of the $10 USD adoption fee will be donated to both American Red Cross Disaster Relief and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) Disaster Relief Fund.
Blizzard points out that your donation will be split equally between the both organizations. Half will go to the American Red Cross to help people affected by disasters big and small in the U.S. The other half will go to the IFRC to help Red Cross Red Crescent Societies respond to disasters through their Disaster Relief Emergency Fund.
The Shadow fox pet has a color-changing coat with light and shadow effects. Sometimes the Shadow fox is yellow, and other times it is purple. As with other World of Warcraft pets, you purchase one and all of your World of Warcraft characters will be able to use it.
Blizzard Entertainment announced that it has opened Blizzard Arena Los Angeles. The Burbank, California venue was custom-designed and built with amenities to accommodate top esports competitors and their fans. High profile events for Hearthstone esports and Overwatch esports have already been scheduled.
The Blizzard Arena is intended to be the hot destination for premier esports competition. Multiple broadcasts and events can be run out of Blizzard Arena simultaneously because it has multiple sound stages, control rooms and player lounges throughout the facility. There will also be an on-site Blizzard store that will open during events and feature a rotating selection of gear and goods based on the event that is taking place.
The Overwatch Contenders Playoffs will run the weekend of October 7-8, 2017. This event will be the grand opening event of Blizzard Arena Los Angeles. The Summer Championship for the Hearthstone Championship Tour will take place on October 13, 2017.
The Overwatch League launches later this year, and Blizzard Arena Los Angeles will be the home for the inaugural season.
Blizzard Entertainment has released StarCraft: Remastered. It is described as “Blizzard Entertainment’s lovingly crafted upgrade of the real-time strategy classic and its legendary expansion “Brood War”. Blizzard announced StarCraft: Remastered in March, saying the game would be out “later this summer.” You can purchase StarCraft: Remastered for $14.99 USD.
Widely regarded as one of the most influential strategy games of all time, StarCraft and Brood War tell the story of the first interstellar war between three distinctive factions: the Earth-born terrans, psi-powered protoss, and hive minded zerg. StarCraft: Remastered lets players reexperience the saga of iconic characters like Jim Raynor, High Templar Tassadar, and Kerrigan, through upgraded 4K visuals, enhanced audio and music, and new illustrated story interludes.
StarCraft: Remastered provides players with an arsenal of new updates and features including:
- Full graphical upgrade of the original StarCraft and the StarCraft: Brood War expansion
- Widescreen UHD support for up to 4K resolution
- Matchmaking and leaderboards
- Player profiles that track individual statistics
- Cloud saving for campaign progress, hotkeys, and replays
- Improved high fidelity music and sound
- Ability to switch between Remastered and the original StarCraft with the click of a button
StarCraft: Remastered is available now for Windows and Mac PCs. It is available in English, Brazilian Portuguese, Latin American Spanish, French, German, European Spanish, Italian, Polish, Russian, Korean, Japanese, and simplified and traditional Chinese.
Twitch announced that they are collaborating with Blizzard Entertainment again to bring players a Legendary Loot Chest for Heroes of the Storm. This is not the first time the two companies have collaborated in this way.
In June, the offer was a Golden Loot Box for Overwatch for current and new Twitch Prime members. That offer is valid through August 20, 2017. In addition, there is another offer for Overwatch players who have Twitch Prime.
From August 10th – September 10th, Twitch Prime members will receive five Loot Boxes* for Overwatch. Then, in October, Twitch Prime members will receive five more Loot Boxes containing skins, emotes, highlight intros, and other in-game items to customize your heroes.
The asterisk leads to: Offer valid only in regions where Twitch Prime is available. Must own Overwatch to redeem. Loot Box does not include any seasonal event items. Content of Loot Box is random. Each Blizzard account may only redeem one code per promotional item.
At the time, Twitch stated that similar promotions would be coming in the months ahead for Heroes of the Storm players and for Hearthstone players. The Heroes of the Storm offer is valid right now. From August 17 to October 10, anyone who links their Amazon Prime account to their Twitch account will receive one Legendary Loot Chest that contains at least one Legendary item for Heroes of the Storm.
Players who are not currently a Twitch Prime member can sign up for a free Twitch Prime trial. Those who get Twitch Prime also get the benefits that come from Amazon Prime, including streaming movies and TV shows to ad-free viewing of your favorite Twitch streamers.
All Xbox Live Gold members can enjoy Blizzard Entertainment’s Diablo III: Reaper of Souls – The Ultimate Evil Edition for free as part of Xbox Live Gold Free Play Days. In order to take advantage of this offer, you must be an Xbox Live Gold member.
It’s being called a “Free Weekend”, but the offer actually lasts a total of 5 days. It started on Thursday, July 27, 2017, and will continue through Monday, July 31, 2017, at 11:59 p.m. PST.
Xbox Live Gold members on Xbox One markets will get a special opportunity to fight back against the hordes of evil. During this time you can also purchase Diablo III: Eternal Collection, the latest version of Diablo III that includes the new Necromancer class and all content from Diablo III: Reaper of Souls – Ultimate Evil Edition, from the Xbox Store at 35% off to continue playing after Xbox Live Gold’s Free Play Days concludes.
If you give the game a try, and later decide to come back to it, your saved progress and earned achievements will remain. In other words, you won’t lose the progress you made.
The Diablo III: Reaper of Souls – Ultimate Evil Edition contains both Diablo III and the Reaper of Souls expansion set, together in one volume. You can choose to play as a Crusader, Barbarian, Witch Doctor, Demon Hunter, Monk or Wizard. You can download Diablo III: Reaper of Souls – Ultimate Evil Edition by clicking on the Gold Member area on the home dashboard or downloading directly from the Xbox Store.
Blizzard Entertainment has created a giveaway as a way of celebrating the Necromancer’s first Season. Someone will win everything they need to start from scratch with the brand new Necromancer class – and more!
When Diablo III first launched, it came with 5 different classes (each of which could be played as male or female characters). Those classes were: Barbarian, Demon Hunter, Monk, Witch Doctor, and Wizard. Later, the first (and potentially only) expansion to Diablo III was released. The Diablo III: Reaper of Souls expansion added one more class, the Crusader.
Blizzard introduced the Necromancer class into the game in a way they haven’t done before. If you want to play this new class, you have to purchase the Rise of the Necromancer Pack. It comes with two additional character slots (that you can fill with two brand new Necromancers), and other assorted cosmetic items. The Rise of the Necromancer pack costs $14.99 on the Blizzard Store.
Those who play Diablo III know that the game includes Seasons, where you can start a brand new character (or rebirth an existing one) and race to reach the top of the leaderboard. Season 11 just started, and it is the first Season after the Necromancer was added to the game.
Blizzard has a “Season of the Necromancer Giveaway” going on now. To enter, all you need to do is enter your name and Battle.net email on the giveaway’s website. You also must check a box stating that you have read the Official Rules & Regulations.
A total of 5 randomly selected qualified entrants will win:
1 Necromancer T-shirt
1 Diablo III Battle Chest
1 Rise of the Necromancer Pack game code
1 Diablo III Book of Cain Sketchbook
1 Signed copy of the Reaper of Souls Collector’s Edition
The deadline for entering this giveaway is July 26, 2017 at 11:59 PM PST.
Blizzard announced that they have updated the World of Warcraft profile site. It now contains a lot of information that wasn’t included in the previous version of the Profile site. The changes make it easier for players to quickly view specific information about each of their World of Warcraft characters.
The main character screen mirrors what players see in game, so the information you see about your character’s gear makes logical sense when switching from in-game to the Profile site. Players can view the enchants, transmog info, gems, enhancements, and stats of their gear at a glance.
The Profile page now shows the Achievements that each of your characters has earned. The Profile page dashboard shows how close you are to earning 100% on any area of Achievements. Those areas include: General, Quests, Exploration, Player vs. Player, Dungeons & Raids, Reputation, World Events, Pet Battles, Collections, Class Hall, Scenarios, Legacy, and Feats of Strength.
It is now possible to see your full pet collection on the Profile page. There is a section at the top of the page that shows the Pets that are currently in your Battle Pet Slots. The rest of the pets are in order by favorites, and then by level. You can also view your Mounts from the Profile page. They are listed in order of rarity.
Blizzard announced something that should evoke plenty of nostalgia for those of us who remember playing StarCraft against our friends at LAN parties back in the day – StarCraft: Remastered. It is an upgrade of the original StarCraft game and its award winning expansion, StarCraft: Brood War. This could inspire those who stopped playing StarCraft to get back into the game.
We’ve remastered our units, buildings, and environments, improved game audio, and broadened our supported resolutions. Illustrated interludes bring the struggles and victories of heroes like Artanix, Fenix, Tassadar, Raynor, and Kerrigan to life like never before. Most importantly, the strategy gameplay that StarCraft perfected years ago remains unchanged.
In StarCraft: Remastered, players will be able to zoom out for a Battlecruiser’s view of the battlefield. They will also be able to zoom in to see fine details – such as “the veins on a Mutalisk’s wings.” The original StarCraft soundtrack and dialogue has been re-recorded and rejuvinated. There are race-themed comic book interludes that tell the original story with a fresh coat of paint.
Players can choose from Terrans, Protoss, or Zerg. Players need to finish the campaign portion of the game first, and then can battle against their friends or team up with other players online.
In the StarCraft Forums, there is a post in which Community Manger Traysent provides some clarification to players about what version of StarCraft will be free. “The original game will be free. The HD version will be an upgrade you can buy.” Kotaku reported that StarCraft: Remastered will be due out later this summer.
Blizzard has enacted the first of a series of measures designed to dissuade Overwatch players from gaining experience (EXP) while they are away from their computer’s keyboard (AFK). This problem is happening in Custom Games, and Blizzard has enacted the first of their escalation plan in order to dissuade players from doing that. If the behavior continues, more of the escalation plan will be put into place.
Game Director Jeff Kaplan explained things in a Forum Post in the Overwatch Forums on Battle.net. He makes it clear that the purpose of introducing the Game Browser and Custom Game features was to enable players to experience Overwatch in unique and different ways. They were aware the features could be exploited, and created an internal escalation plan – just in case players abused the features. From the Forum post:
…It’s very disappointing to us that players abused the system to gain experience while inactive. As some of you have noticed, Skirmish in Custom Game no longer rewards experience. Also, the AFK timer is now in place in Skirmish mode (in Custom Game only). This change is rolling out over a 24 hour period and should be live in all regions by the end of today.
Jeff Kaplan also took the time to make it abundantly clear that there is no moral ambiguity about gaining EXP while AFK in a Custom Game.
I’ve seen some discussion in the community and in the press on this topic and sometimes it gets talked about as if this is a grey area. Is this wrong or is this ok? Well, let me take a grey area and make it starkly black and white for you. Abusing and exploiting Custom Game or any other game mode to earn experience in Overwatch while inactive is NOT ok. The reason I want to be absolutely clear about this is in part because we are going to start to take disciplinary action against people who partake in these activities.
He goes on to clarify behaviors that will get your account banned:
- If you create a Custom game that in any way encourages players to gain experience while inactive, you risk having your account banned.
- If you join any game mode – including Custom Games – with the intent of gaining experience while being inactive, you risk having your account banned.
- Do not name your Custom Game that in any way even implies that gaining experience while inactive is OK – not even as a joke – because doing so puts you at risk of having your account banned.
If this behavior doesn’t stop, more of the internal escalation plan will be enacted – until it reaches the final part that involves turning off the ability to gain experience in a Custom game. Players who don’t want to see the Custom Game feature limited further are asked to help Blizzard by reporting players who get into a game, and then go AFK, for the purpose of gaining EXP.