A year after the storm


Last year’s BlizzCon turned out to be quite exciting for all fans, interested in the hidden part of the game development, as the HotS team opened up about how the process of the characters’ creation goes. Four more heroes have been added to the game since then, with Kharazim, another interesting hero, being on his way from test servers to the main version of HotS. However, we think that Kharazim is a bit different from all other characters which means that the time to study this matter in-depth has come. Every character is created basing on certain aspects:


  • Legend: which role does the character play in its universe?
  • Appearance: how does it look and sound?
  • Idea: what and why does he do?


Kael`thas. the Sunstrider


  • Legend: Powerful WarCraft III hero. One of the strongest World of Warcraft raid-bosses. His life motto is “The end justifies the means.”

  • Appearance: arrogant and proud mage, strongly confident in himself. Easily loses his temper.

  • Idea: the fire. Lots of it. He incinerates his enemies with the help of his great skills and destructive magic.


All in all, we can see the dauntingly strong hero capable of destroying numerous enemies at once. He can easily find mana to cast deadly spells and conquer all his enemies. One half of his abilities comes from WarCraft III, and the second one is from WoW. Despite the fact that he is a hybrid of two separate heroes, he is still the same Kael`Thas, powerful and unbreakable fan of the green color. 


Johanna, the Crusader of Zakarum


  • Legend: The hardest-to-destroy Diablo III hero that despite all difficulties always achieves her goals.
  • Appearance: strong and experienced warrior, but still very elegant.
  • Idea: the shield is the main artifact of this crusader, as it protects her allied heroes from enemy’s attacks. She is not looking for the fights, but will kill everybody on her way.


One of the most outstanding warriors in HotS. The great tank hero that always ends up in the middle of the fight and gathers all attention of the enemies. Johanna is not just a plain “tank”, she is a dauntless leader, whose potential can be entirely used only by the players who are not afraid of playing first on their line.  She is aggressive, dynamic, and dangerous. The true warrior that everybody wants to see! This hero is always ready to absorb all damage and save her team from enemy attacks.


Butcher, the Flesh Carver


  • Legend: terrifying demon, capable of killing without second thoughts. Quick, ruthless, and unbelievably strong. He is a boss from original Diablo and his main advice has always been: do not cut the distance between you and your enemy or you will die.

  • Appearance: bloody madness. The demon drown in his own cruelty. Extremely dangerous. Furious. The killer of all living beings.

  • Idea: the best way to describe the Butcher is to compare him to the bull that lives in a red-colored world. He doesn’t need any strategies, allies or helpers. He doesn’t need any goals or reasons. The only thing he wants is your fresh meat!


Butcher has two main goals: to slice the meat and kill his enemies. His presence on the map makes all his opponents shake with fear and hope that they will never face this terrifying monster. However, he is similar to his Diablo prototype, which means that he is not that flexible and can be easily outplayed by smart opponents, able to skillfully dodge his attacks and hide behind the backs of their allies.


Leoric, the Skeleton King


  • Legend: hated by his people while he was alive, this king became even worse after his death. He is a skeleton king with heavy weapon that will hit quietly yet deadly hard.
  • Appearance: as invisible as a ghost when he hunts. Fantastically strong yet a bit clumsy in a fight.
  • Idea: Leoric is crazily cruel. He hates everyone alive and desires to kill as many people as it is possible. His main assistant is his huge mace that strikes horror into the hearts of all enemies. 


Playing against this hero can be quite depressing for his opponents. He is a true hunter on the battlefield that quickly picks his victim and attacks it right away. He will find you everywhere and make you fight. And even if he is close to being defeated, a few hits of his mace can easily turn the tide of the game in his favor. The best way to outplay Leoric is to avoid him until the team will be ready to fight. 


Kharazim, the Monk of Ivgorod


  • Legend: monks are the saint warriors that have got a divine power as a gift. They can use healing waves, protecting mantras and do heavenly strong damage.  
  • Appearance:  kind, evil-eye protected warriors that find the strength within themselves. Skilled at fist fights, and incredibly intelligent.  
  • Idea: mobile monk capable of destroying the enemy with unstoppable hits, and healing the allied hero with the help of his soul. His main strengths are his quickness and faith. 


As it’s been already mentioned, there are still a few questions concerning Kharazim in-game. One of the Blizzard developers revealed that this hero will be added as a support. The list of HotS supports is quite big, including popular Uther, Regar and Malfurion, but Kharazim doesn't work like they do. This hero, in his turn, looks more like Tyrande: a healer, whose main goal is to deal damage. You must agree that this role is quite unusual for the support hero.


By adding Kharazim and allowing players to choose his role, developers made quite innovative step. However, it seems quite questionable whether such changes will be pozitive for the current in-game balance. For instance, similar problem arose after Kael`Thas was added (Uther as a counter-pick and level races). Considering that Kharazim is a far more flexible hero, the situation may be even worse. It is clear that such modifications of his role are connected with the absence of support heroes in Diablo universe, which has become a source of new ideas for HotS lately.


Anyway, such approach caused a streak of other strange decisions. For example, on gamescom, we were able to see the in-game art based on Medic from StarCraft II. Most likely, he will become the first HotS hero, drawn not from the character but from the plain unit from StarCraft universe. Honestly speaking, it is difficult to understand the reasons behind this decision, as the StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty is full of heroes that can be added as supports. Maybe, Blizzard developers themselves are confused? And even more important question: how the year after the storm will end? 

AuthormJay Date16 August 2015, 22:50 Views1229 Comments0
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