League of Legends unveiled its new champion duo, Quinn and Valor, a dynamic pair of characters that work together as a single champion to dominate teamfights. Heroes of Newerth revealed its own new hero with a video spotlight on Saloman, a melee support hero who gains power from movement and can heal and shield his allies.
Dota 2 added a new Hero Build feature to its beta this week, giving players access to community-produced skill and item builds for all heroes. Console MOBA Guardians of Middle-Earth showed off its new goblin DLC character Snaga, and online FPS Blacklight: Retribution detailed its upcoming Onslaught expansion, which comes with three new game modes.
showed up at Sony's PlayStation 4 reveal conference this week to announce that Diablo III will be coming to both the new console and existing PlayStation 3 users. We knew that Blizzard had been working on a potential console release of the game as far back as January last year, and in December, developers confirmed that the game was running on a console internally. We now know that the unnamed consoles were the PlayStation 3 and the as-then unannounced PlayStation 4, with no mention of a potential Xbox release.
The console version will be shown off at the next PAX and will certainly make an appearance at this year's BlizzCon. The annual BlizzCon event was skipped last year due to impending deadlines on the release of Diablo III and World of Warcraft's Mists of Pandaria expansion. This November will see the event's triumphant return at the Anaheim Convention Center in California.
Torchlight II in Asia. The game will be released in Japanese, simplified Chinese, and traditional Chinese versions, with release dates still to be announced. To celebrate the news, developers announced that a free update is on the way for all players featuring three new Asian-themed pets. Runic hasn't disclosed what the three new pets will be, but an announcement is forthcoming.
Diablo II has been consistently popular for over a decade is that the slate is periodically wiped clean with regular ladder resets. Every time the ladder is reset, existing characters are moved into non-ladder servers, and ladder players can start over with level 1 characters and a completely fresh loot economy. Path of Exile has evolved this idea to produce its race seasons, each of which contains a series of short events for which players must create new characters.
Characters participating in a race exist in a bubble, able to interact and trade only with other characters in the same race event. Each race lasts between one hour and a week, with various achievements and challenges attached that earn you reward points and unlock some pretty nice prizes. Developers originally used these race events to test loot and gameplay changes without affecting the core game, but they've proven so popular that the community demanded more. The full schedule of race events for season one was published this week, with events running almost every day for the next several months.
Anticipating problems that have occurred in other games, Grinding Gear Games also changed its account security policy this week. To prevent item duplication through false customer support requests, items will not be restored to hacked accounts. To better secure their accounts, players will soon be able to lock account access to within a particular city or even to a specific IP.
League of Legends has added plenty of clever new champions with interesting game mechanics over the years, but new champion Quinn looks as if she could be the most interesting one yet. Quinn is a beastmaster who works in tandem with her flying familiar, a bird named Valor with some interesting abilities of his own. Valor will periodically mark an enemy as vulnerable, and if Quinn then attacks that enemy, she gets bonus damage on her first strike.
The Heightened Senses ability passively grants Quinn bonus attack speed if she attacks units marked as vulnerable, which could lead to some interesting outcomes on the battlefield as you don't know which enemy champion or creep Valor will mark. Heightened Senses can also be activated to send Valor high into the sky, revealing all nearby units that are out of view or hiding in brush.
Quinn can also vault toward enemies and send Valor forth as a skill-shot nuke that blinds the first enemy struck, making her adept at chasing down fleeing champions. Perhaps Quinn's most interesting skill is her ultimate ability, Tag Team, which causes her to leap out of the battlefield and leave Valor in her place. The skill powers up Valor's attacks and grants him a huge movement speed buff for chasing down enemy champions or escaping, and it ends with Quinn returning in a hail of damaging crossbow bolts.
Heroes of Newerth just released new hero Saloman, a highly mobile melee strength hero with a strong set of support abilities. His first ability, Djinn Blast, fires a projectile that passes through units in a line, damaging enemies struck and healing allies. To help his team chase down fleeing heroes, Saloman's Sacred Grounds ability gives him a speed boost and leaves a trail of dust in his wake that speeds up allies and slows enemies.
Saloman is most powerful when he's constantly on the move, as his Guardian Spirit passive grants him a damage shield while moving. The ability can be activated to remove Saloman's shield, but it grants the same shield to nearby allies. To keep him extremely useful in a teamfight, S2 Games has made Saloman's ultimate ability a massive area-effect damage dealing spell; eight damage-dealing orbs spiral out from Saloman's current position and then come back in again, dealing damage to anyone struck by them. Enemies right on top of Saloman can even be struck by all eight orbs for massive damage.
Dota 2's latest effort to lower the game's barrier to entry borrows a few ideas from veteran MOBA Heroes of Newerth with in-game strategy guides.
With its new Hero Build system, Dota 2 players will can now design and submit full character builds that will be accessible by all players in-game. The builds will show what skill to take at each level and what items to build throughout a match.
Guardians of Middle-Earth revealed its newest DLC guardian this week, the powerful goblin striker Snaga the Ravenous. The reveal video below shows Snaga in action as he sneaks past enemy guardians and appears to eat creeps. Details of his abilities are available on the official website.
Blacklight: Retribution has opened a new teaser site packed full of information and reveals. A new expansion overview devblog explains the huge scope of the update, which is set to introduce three new game modes and maps. In addition to the co-op PvE Onslaught game mode itself, players will also get a Search and Destroy mode and the much-requested Last Man Standing deathmatch mode.
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