Heroes of the Storm Adds New Map and StarCraft, Warcraft, Diablo Characters

Diablo gets its first support, StarCraft its first warrior, and Warcraft brings HotS' first-ever ranged warrior.

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Blizzard has unveiled details on some upcoming Heroes of the Storm characters, as well as a new map that's on the way.

Three new characters in all have been officially revealed, only one of which is coming as part of the Diablo-themed Eternal Conflict event. Diablo III's Monk, who was previously revealed to be on the way, has been more fully detailed. Known as Kharazim (all of Diablo's classes are given names in HotS), he's a mobile melee character who's capable of healing.

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He's the first support-class character from Diablo, and he'll operate differently than existing characters. At level 1, you'll choose from one of three traits that dictate the type of character he'll be--you can deal more damage (Iron Fists), heal through melee attacks (Transcendence), or a mix of the two that also lets you recover mana (Insight).

His abilities include one that lets him jump to and attack enemies, a heal for himself and nearby allies, and one that extends the range of his attacks. His heroic abilities include one that renders him invisible and invincible, allowing him to attack a nearby enemy; and one that buffs an ally so that they are healed if they die.

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The other two new characters will be the first from outside of the Diablo franchise since May. Warcraft's Rexxar joins the fray as HotS' first ranged warrior, and is accompanied by a bear companion, Misha, who can serve as a tank and (as one of Rexxar's abilities) stun enemies in an area. Rexxar can also slow enemies with a hawk and heal Misha (who can die, but respawns at the expense of some of Rexxar's strength). His heroics include one that causes boars to seek out, reveal, and slow enemies, and another that gives Misha additional damage.

The last of the new characters is the one we know the least about, and is another first class type for his franchise. StarCraft's Artanis is a close-range warrior who's said to have "some heavy-hitting abilities." You'll be able to get your hands on him for free by preordering or purchasing StarCraft II: Legacy of the Void, which we now know is coming this year.

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Alongside Kharazim, the ongoing Eternal Conflict event will see the addition of another map, Infernal Shrines. Unlike the previous Diablo-themed battleground, Battlefield of Eternity, this is a three-lane map where teams fight over the control of three shrines. Activating one causes NPCs to show up, and by defeating them, a boss will spawn with one of three powers (Arcane, Frozen, or Mortar) and attack nearby heroes and push the nearest lane.

More details on all of this are expected later this week when Blizzard hosts an event at Gamescom on Friday, August 7, at 9 AM PDT.

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