Heroes of the Storm

The Appreciation Thread (as well as criticism) for the Cores Defense abilities.

HeroesoftheStorm 7 - The Appreciation Thread (as well as criticism) for the Cores Defense abilities.
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As people might have realized by now the cores on the different maps all have different abilities that they will use to defend themselves when they are being attacked by the opposing team, this change came to the game quite some time ago. I would like to start a discussion about this change now when everyone has played with it for so long and I would like to kick it off by sharing my own opinion on each separate core mechanic as well as my general thoughts about them.

I will be listing the cores into 3 different categories purely based on my own experience and thoughts, the categories are Good-, Mediocre-, and bad cores.


Good Core Abilities:

**Tomb of the Spider Queen:**Every 5 seconds, the Core will shoot a Wave, dealing 5% maximum Health as damage to enemy Heroes and slowing them by 70% for 1.25 seconds.

A general theme you are gonna see from the cores in the top category is that they are either based around or are a straight-up copy of an ability already present on the map. Another thing this core mechanic does well is that it allows both teams to play around it very well.If you are a new player you will also recognize this ability from the objective the very first time you see it and doesn't require you to get hit by it to know what it does. A general theme you are gonna see from the cores in the top category is that they are either based around or are a straight-up copy of an ability already present on the map. Another thing this core mechanic does well is that it allows both teams to play around it as you can see the area the ability will affect before it happens. If you are a new player you will also recognize this ability from the objective the very first time you see it and doesn't require you to get hit by it to know what it does.

**Volskaya Foundry:**Every 6 seconds, the Core shoots 3 Rocket Fists at nearby enemy Heroes, dealing 150 damage and knocking them back.

While this mechanic can feel a little annoying when you do get hit by it and it pushes you into that one enemy keep you haven't destroyed yet it's still something that can be played around by the attacking team and you shouldn't get hit by them very often. This ability is also an ability that is already present on the map and you are not questioning what that flying gauntlet thingy might do if it hits you when you have been played the map for 15 minutes. The only downside I would say this mechanic has is how little it allows the defending team to play around it.

**Sky temple:**Every 23 seconds, the Core will spawn 2 sets of 6 tornadoes which swirl around it, dealing 25 damage to enemy Heroes and knocking them back.

Once again a core which ability you have already seen on the map while playing on it. While I haven't decided how I like to play with or against it, there's no doubt that just the idea or design of this mechanic is probably my personal favorite, the fact that the core can effectively build terrain around itself is really cool to me and it allows both teams to consistently use them for getting extra space around the core based on the fact that they move in a fixed pattern around the core (as opposed to the tornado around the boss which looks much more random)

**Warhead Junction:**Every 18 seconds, the Core launches a Nuke at a nearby enemy Hero, dealing 30% maximum health to enemy Heroes hit.

This will be brief as the map itself is not great or well-liked there is no doubt in my mind that the core mechanic deserves a top spot, it is predictable zoning that the defending team can use to have safe spaces to play in, We also can't forget that the nukes look cool AF.

Alterac Pass:

I wasn't sure if I wanted to include this on the list at all or throw it together with the Towers of Doom core at the end, but I feel like the design of this core is too awesome to pass on. The Alterac Pass core is very fun to especially play against as you have to fight a core that you sometimes have to chase other times you have to brawl against it as it's fighting you and the armor system is also very cool and makes it feel like you are impacting the core with everything you do no matter if you are taking the first keep of the game or you are taking the third keep to make it easier to end later on. I will say that it can at times feel impossible to pull off that hail mary 3v5 defense around this core if it keeps moving away from you and you can't set up any kind of "line of defense" effectively.


Mediocre Core Abilities:

**Infernal Shrines and Battlefield of Eternity:**Every 12 seconds, the Core will spawn 2 volleys of Frozen Orbs that explode, dealing 5% maximum Health as damage and Rooting enemy Heroes hit for 1.5 seconds.

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These two cores have the same effect, I would say this core mechanic is very close to being top tier, it's a mechanic that is present on the map from the objective in the case of Infernal Shrines, but not on Battlefield of Eternity which I could see it being forgettable for newer players and so may be harder to get used to, but I will cut this some slag as you will face this core mechanic more often and the cores also look the same anyway. The main reason I have chosen to put this core at this tier is that the mechanic leaves little counterplay for melee heroes especially as the space between the circles is too small. If the circles were just a tiny bit smaller or if there was one fewer circle to free up more space in between each one I would feel better about putting it in the top category.

**Garden of Terror:**Every 5 seconds, the Core shoots a seed under a nearby enemy Hero. When the seed explodes, Heroes inside are Polymorphed for 3 seconds.

I had originally placed this core in the highest tier, the reasons for that is that it allows counterplay while also allowing the defending team to play around the effect and effectively cc-chain with the core. Another reason was also that the effect is already present on the map, but I realized is that a lot of people probably haven't played old Garden of Terror ad this "polymorph plant" isn't a part of the map anymore, and it might therefore not realize what the effect is until it's too late. This is also a core mechanic with a much more random pattern but the long warning time should give you plenty of time to react.


Bad Core Abilities:

**Blackheart's Bay:**Every 4 seconds, the Core will shoot a cannonball at 2 nearby enemy Heroes, dealing 5% maximum Health as damage, slowing them by 70% for 1.5 seconds, and knocking them back.

This core mechanic feels very spammy and the random nature of both where the cannonballs land (combined with the short warning time) and also where you land afterward, can make this core quite frustrating to attack and doesn't feel very rewarding if you pull off a successful defense if the core was lowkey carrying you.

**Cursed Hollow:**Every 3 seconds, the Core will spawn a Curse under a nearby enemy Hero. If they are Cursed, they take 5% maximum Health as damage, and their Armor is reduced by 75 for 4 seconds.

This effect feels very unintuitive as it is not present anywhere on the map even though you can argue it fits the hole "curse theme", it definitely is not what you expect when you first attack the core. The worst part however is again the lack of predictability, you can't play around it especially as the defending team because it happens in random locations and the areas are quite small as well. and the difference between being hit and not is too big for how unpredictable it is.

**Dragonshire:**Every 6 seconds, the Core will throw 2 boulders at a nearby enemy Hero. Heroes hit are turned to stone, damaged for 5% of their maximum Health, and Stunned for 1.75 seconds.

This one is in the same boat as the two previous cores but to a slightly worse degree than Cursed Hollow.

**Braxis Holdout:**Every 4 seconds, the Core will shoot 5 missiles at a nearby enemy Hero, dealing 5% maximum Health as damage per missile.

A very common theme for the cores in the bottom category is that they feel very spammy to play against which leaves little room for counterplay as you can't really play around a specific time-windows like you can on other maps. When the core does something very impactless but does that thing very often it can also lead to frustration when attacking and it doesn't feel like you are playing with your core when you are defending as it's just doing its own thing.

**Hanamura Temple:**Every 8 seconds, the Core fires 2 volleys of missiles around it, dealing 5% maximum Health to enemy Heroes and slowing them by 70% for 1.25 seconds.

This core has the same problems as Braxis Holdout being it feels very spammy and not very interactive for either team.

I did not include the Towers of Doom core here as it is so very different and doesn't exactly have an effect like the others outside of just entirely being its very unique thing. But if I had to place it, it would be in the top category.

So, in conclusion, the cores that seem to work the best, at least for me, are the cores with bigger but more rarely occurring effects like Sky Temple and Warhead Junction, or the cores that have very predictable effects that both teams can play around like Tomb of the Spider queen or Volskaya Foundry.
The cores that seem to feel very bad or awkward are the cores that feel very spammy and each effect individually feels very impactless and therefore doesn't feel very interactive like Hanamura Temple or Braxis Holdout. As well as the cores that seem very unpredictable and therefore also don't feel very interactive like Dragon Shire and Blackheart's Bay.

I would like to hear other people's opinions on the cores and maybe if there are some of them that you feel different about.

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