Across its handful of properties Blizzard has some of the most iconic characters in gaming. It's free-to-play MOBA Heroes of the Storm brings them all together, and now NECA's Heroes of the Storm action figure line is making toy collectors' dreams come true.
While outfits like Sideshow Toys keep Blizzard in the high-end collectibles, we've not seen a regular line of consumer-friendly figures from the company since DC Entertainment stopped making World of Warcraft figures back in 2012. Having proven themselves with an excellent standalone Diablo from Diablo III, NECA has been handed the keys to the Blizzard kingdom.
Debuting this weekend at Toy Fair 2015 in New York City, NECA's Heroes of the Storm line is a series of six-inch scale, highly-articulated action figures based on Blizzard's all-star free-to-play MOBA, now in closed beta (and accepting sign-ups). There are currently 34 heroes (36 if you count the three-in-one Lost Vikings) available to play from four different Blizzard properties, and NECA's aim is to make figures for every one of them -- plus some of the more popular skins and the odd surprise variant.
Please please please please please.
But they have got to start somewhere, and that somewhere is Wave One.
Figures will scale similarly to their in-game appearances.
The first wave of Heroes of the Storm figures consists of Arthas, Illidan Stormrage and Stitches from World of Warcraft, Nova from StarCraft and Tyrael from Diablo. Basic figures will be released in pairs starting with Nova and Illidan in early summer 2015, with the larger-than-undeath Stitches being released on his own as a Deluxe figure.
Actual figure not smaller while holding gun.
NECA is using the in-game models from Heroes of the Storm for the characters, giving them a uniform look and feel. As opposed to DC's World of Warcraft offerings, these figures will be highly poseable as well as incredibly detailed.
Every time I look at these pictures of Nova's paint master my breath catches just a little. She's so perfect. Even her gun is perfect.
I like Illidan's figure, but I'm been angry with the character since he betrayed his brother Malfurion in the War of the Ancients book trilogy, and no pretty piece of plastic is going to make me feel better about that.
What a jerk.
I'd rather hang out with Stitches.
And he's got exposed guts.
Probably something he ate.
As for Tyrael (I keep wanting to type Azrael) and Arthas in Lich King garb, you'll just have to satisfy yourselves with the size comparison above. Don't worry, they will get here.
Every MOBA needs to do this. The way players and fans get attached to their champion/hero/guardian/god/whatever, action figures would surely sell like hotcakes, if hotcakes were the sort of thing that still sold really well.
Probably not as well as NECA's line will however, as they have not only got a MOBA behind them, but over two decades of some of the most memorable titles in gaming.
Visitors to the New York Toy Fair will be able to get a glimpse of the paint masters for the Heroes of the Storm action figure line starting February 13. Blizzard urges fans who would like to see their favourite character get priority treatment make some noise on the Heroes of the Storm Twitter and Facebook page (vote Jaina).