Can we take a moment to appreciate Dustin Browder? The game director on Heroes of the Storm is always answering peoples’ questions on Twitter, despite some of them being asked in a not-so-nice way. After the latest hero addition and two months of stale meta, he’s been hard at work.
After the last major balance update, the game has favoured certain heroes a lot, and many ranked matches have been samey for a while.
A little tangent — while in Vegas for the Americas Championship, I was standing near Browder at an afterparty and couldn’t help but overhear a few things. The guy really cares about the community, there was lots of talk along the lines of “Those are our people, we’ve gotta do our best for them.” In an age of “don’t read the comments”, when people regularly have contempt for their fans, I was impressed.
Anyway, back on track. Let’s take a look at what Browder has to say about some of the community’s concerns. For some of them, you might need to click the link to see the question he was asked.
Agreed. https://t.co/nwX9rCBHSe— Dustin Browder (@DustinBrowder) January 11, 2016
Bans are probably the most requested feature at the moment, as it would offer a chance to get rid of whatever the overpowered hero of the time is and create more diverse games.
I'll look into this. https://t.co/5nPluKtY3e— Dustin Browder (@DustinBrowder) January 11, 2016
The charge is very stoppable.
We are looking into ways to get more balance patches more often. https://t.co/YbiHeVrMCG— Dustin Browder (@DustinBrowder) January 8, 2016
We need it!
Well, if we reset MMR our match maker will be much, much worse. https://t.co/WQYsnR1hyt— Dustin Browder (@DustinBrowder) January 8, 2016
That’s a tough one. There are certainly good players stuck in elo hell right now, and it’s tough to work your way up when you’re only 10% of the in-game actors. But the MMR system does need improvements, and Blizzard won’t be able to work with a blank slate.
Draft/Bans are being worked on now. Will use same system we are using in esports today. Not waiting on more heroes. https://t.co/4cE7qhzBkE— Dustin Browder (@DustinBrowder) January 7, 2016
Hooray! Here’s hoping it’s ready next patch.
Matchmaker. Bans. Improved Draft. Season Roll. Grand Master. Death Recap. Rank Play update. https://t.co/vScKcqEnlO— Dustin Browder (@DustinBrowder) January 6, 2016
Death recap is another good priority. Sometimes you just don’t know what the hell killed you.
I learned that people who sound very angry often LOVE what they seem angry about. Heroes community is the best. https://t.co/34ykYZH8Nv— Dustin Browder (@DustinBrowder) January 6, 2016
True that, brother.
Matchmaker averages your MMR. I am not convinced our current math produces a good result often enough. https://t.co/vVdx7hS5gc— Dustin Browder (@DustinBrowder) January 4, 2016
It really, really doesn’t.
Longer. Sorry. =( We got some good feedback from Blizzcon and will keep working on it. https://t.co/MTzBd9OU7I— Dustin Browder (@DustinBrowder) January 4, 2016
Yep, that arena mode they teased looked like great fun, but it’s understandable it won’t be out for a while.
Yes, discussing. No ETA on when we would deliver that. https://t.co/rWmVsNeHwo— Dustin Browder (@DustinBrowder) January 13, 2016
Hard to implement, but would be very cool. Currently the stats displayed are interesting, but with all the crazy hero roles in this game, it’s hard to use them as solid performance indicators. Things like sustain damage and burst damage (at a crucial moment) are hard to gauge the effectiveness of. Depending on your talent choices, you could be playing different roles as well. It’s also open to manipulation. If “hero damage” is included in MMR adjustment, for example, a Raynor might feel like it’s a good idea to go for Giant Killer and shoot the tank.
Yes I understand. https://t.co/9UgS9wY89i— Dustin Browder (@DustinBrowder) January 13, 2016
Geez, lay off the guy. They’re doing their best.
Will try to be more transparent. Haunted Mines is cut. Will not return without rework. We are not working on it now. https://t.co/7vGr8jptjz— Dustin Browder (@DustinBrowder) January 13, 2016
Well, I hope they bring it back at some point. It was one of those maps that was so different to the usual MOBA map it gave HOTS more innovation points.
You can follow Browder on Twitter here, and he regularly responds to queries about the game. Unfortunately it’s been a lot of “I understand” and “No ETA” for a bit, but that’s because the last patch was a huge scaling change and there were bound to be some after effects. Here’s hoping to some balance changes soon.