As we all know, Haunted Mines has been removed from the mappool a while ago. Initially, I was like 'whatever,' but a recent dev comment gave me this idea for a full rework of the map.
First, there were several issues with old Haunted Mines that needed to be addressed:
– First objective was significantly too weak.
– Sappers were too strong.
– The map was a little on the small side.
So how to fix this? Well, many ways of course. It depends on what you want.
So what did I want:
– Objective must be stronger especially near the start
– Objective must not be able to snowball too easily.
– Taking Skulls as the losing team must weaken the objective for the winning team.
– Various ways to defend against the objective.
– Vertically symmetrical cut (like Infernal Shrines or Sky Temple) opposed to diagonally (like Braxis, Hanamura or Cursed Hollow).
So how to achieve this? Well, I didn't really know, but on the other hand there are things that you should include anyway:
– Vision point on the boss
– Mercenaries, some contested, some safe, some more in between-ish.
So I started sketching and putting things in various places for crumpets and giggles. This was the first result I was happy with:
Basic Map Features:
Dark gray: keep+core
Medium gray: Lanes until front wall. Forts are in this area too.
Light grey: The middle of the lane, in between the frontmost walls.
Light green: Jungle
Charcoal: Unpassable Terrain
Top: A M-shaped lane. Siege Giants on top (yellow), and if captured they take the long way around towards the enemy. The large purple circle is the giant hole in the ground that gives vision on the boss during the objective. South of the lane, between keep and fort, are entrances to the mines below (turquoise rectangles).
Middle: Standard lane. Two bruiser camps are located at the top of each side (positioned fairly safely but not invade-proof (orange)
Bottom: Another standard lane. Siege Giants are positioned very safely, practically near your Keep's wall (yellow). Two entrances to the mines are in the jungle if only just, directly above the fort in the bottom lane (turquoise rectangles).
The jungle is wide open, providing room to dodge and manouver as well as for the objective to pass through and people to fight it at the same time, but I return to that later.
The objective gets announced after 2:30, and entry to the mines granted after 3:00. This is basically a giant jungle, with 6 light small skeleton camps (the pink circle) and the Grave Golem directly underneath the vision point in the top lane (the large magenta camps). The tiny pale yellow dots grant Healing Beacons, which spawn right when the objective phase starts. They are not as good as the Volskaya healing beacon but they are also just free for the taking, though taking them is channeled like a Nuke on Warhead Junction.
The mines now consist of two levels as you see – in the middle of each side of the mines there is another entrance (lilac rectangles) that leads to a tiny deeper level, which contains small skeleton camp (the single pink circle) and a MULE item that heals 200 health per second of a building and lasts for 30 seconds, so it is significantly stronger than Abathur's MULE (but it is an item tied to objective cooldowns).
As for the objective itself, the small skeleton camps consists of 5 miners, that drop 2 skulls each, making for a total of 70 skulls. The boss drops 30, of which one is slightly bigger. The team that gets the most skulls, gets the objective., which spawns at the same area as the original Grave Golem objective boss. Despite there being 100 skulls, you can't draw since one of the skulls (as mentioned) is slightly bigger, enabling it to count as the tiebreaker.
This boss is powerful – potentially the most powerful objective in the game if you have 100 skulls – but does lose a significant portion of its strength if a team did not gather all skulls, since attack and health are lost proportionally to the number of skulls gathered. A 50 skull boss only has half its life and half its attack.
From there on it walks down to the south while the objective starts channeling at the bottom of the cavern (the dark grey area), giving the losing team already the initial chance to poke the Grave Golem down a bit, as the objective will lose 1 skull for every 5% of its damage taken before it arrives inside the Cavern (the dark gray lane). Once it arrives there, or if it dies, the channeling time is set to 15.0 seconds, giving everybody time to regroup.
When there are ten seconds left to channel, the objective traveling path is being marked on the minimap (the boss will target the lane with the most structure life remaining, similar to the Immortal on Battlefield of Eternity. If the objective goes for the bottom lane it will take the shortest available path). Once it is done channeling, a Grave Golem is summoned that has 200% base health and attack of a normal Grave Golem is summoned at the purple arrow on the surface, but as I said before, it will lose strength depending on the number of skulls captured or taken by poking at the boss still inside the mines by the losing team.
So a symmetrical three-lane map, that should keep people occupied and a complicated objective (probably the most comparable with Battlefield of Eternity) except that the map rewards roaming as well as fighting safely more, so I would assume that strong duelists with solid waveclear would shine here, but it is impossible to do everything you want to do during the objective. From waveclear to camps to the objective itself, you want to do it all, but you really have to make choices. At higher ranks there would be more room to do things efficiently as I assume eventually a meta would develop (Some kind of 1-4 rotation, but 1-3-1 wouldn't surprise me either).
What do you think of Haunted Mines now it's gone for a while?
And what do you think of my suggestion, or any of its individual aspects?
Source: Original link
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