Blizzcon 2015 - A Blizzard Hits Anaheim!
I live in Southern California and here it does not snow in LA or Anaheim, but last weekend we were hit by a storm. We experienced a Blizzard of games, announcements, demos, expansions, and collectibles. Here I thought that Comikaze was my last convention of the year. I was dead wrong.
It was my first BlizzCon I didn’t know what to expect I knew I was in for a show after the closing ceremonies, but what happens between 10am-10pm who knows? I dibble dabble in Blizzard games but I am far from an expert. When I walked into the Con floor it was dark and full of demo areas, displays, statues, and all things Blizzard. My mission was to test out Overwatch the latest in a long list of franchises that this developer makes.
Check out my gallery of pictures:
The first game I played was Overwatch. It is a fast paced MOBA style 1st person shooter that comes out for consoles and PCs 2nd Quarter 2016 (early next year). When I played it I was given the chance to play all 21 characters which included the 3 new characters announced Friday of the show. In order to win you have to have a strategy and a squad of 5 mixed characters. You can have multiple Bastions a robot who can morph into a turret in order to block your opponent's path to their main objective. You can also have a team with every type of character so that it is balanced but involves more strategy or you can go apeshit and have all tanks with no defense. I don’t recommend that way.
The next stop on my tour was to take in some of the sites around the Overwatch area.There was a hulking Winston and an agile Tracer statue. What is amazing is the detail that is put into all of the statues that were on display. I made my way into the Darkmoon Faire a recreation of an area from WoW. This is where the Diablo demo was, a coin operated machine with 6 collectible figures which I got accidentally well trading, picture area, and a pet adoption shop.
I traveled into the dark reaches of the StarCraft Universe to watch part of the World Series Semifinals. It felt like a chess match but when there was a strategic move made the crowd would erupt. So I decided to play a round of the game. I got lost in the base creation process with my partner. We both suck at RTS games (Real Time Strategy) and it was our first time with this franchise. I am use to Command and Conquer but now have the itch to play Starcraft 2 and the new expansion Legacy of the Void.
The next game I took for a spin was Heroes of the Storm a game I am familiar with and actually kinda good at. My team that day consisted of my friend Andrew, his coworker Hank (his name isn’t Hank but let’s just call him Hank), me, and 2 other guys who didn’t want to play with us so we got dumped on. This mode was called Towers of Doom which was one of the standard modes of play. Next we played arena mode which you had to choose between 3 characters at random and the team to collect the most seeds won. In the second round as a joke or punishment we all were Murkys the slimy water dwelling creatures of the Warcraft World. It was silly and fun but I mostly found it annoying.
When we were playing this game the World Series of Heroes of the Storm was going on. I am not into eSports and find it weird to watch other people play videogames for fun/sport. Not today because I ended up cheering for Cloud 9 who was demolishing their opponent Team Dignitas. It was exciting and thrilling to watch the final matches. The crowd was really into it and you could feel the electricity on the floor it was like watching the Lakers go at it in the NBA Finals. Cloud 9 was crowned the 1st World Series Champions and 1st USA Team to win. I will be paying more attention to eSports now.
Last game I played was the card based game Hearthstone a fan favorite if you have time to play. I played the adventurers expansion and it was different. You have an opponent but it’s more like a run down a temple and your opposition is time. In this game you have 8 turns to escape if you don’t you lose. I lost once and the second time I won. Hearthstone is more luck than strategy.
Oh you’re thinking to yourself hey Obe what about the cosplay. Well my friend the cosplayers at BlizzCon have a lot of talent. Blizzard characters are not easy to bring to life since in-game they have a lot of detail so out of the game as a cosplayer you need to bring them to life. Orcs, Arthas, Raynor, Kael'thas, Kharazim, Sylvanas, Illidan, and many more are not easy characters to make into a great looking cosplay. It was all beautiful to take in even the Deathwing looked oh so lovely but deadly.
What I did love about this con was that the store was located on the bottom floor of the convention center floor. This was great because on the topside of the floor you can walk around and have fun while enjoying the show without the distraction of collectibles and vendors. The store was it’s own thing there was areas to trade vinyls and other items along with a big shop that had exclusives, and swags to buy.
In the end the crowd was treated to a concert by Linkin Park. After the closing ceremonies the stage crew went to work setting up the band’s equipment. I am bias and once again Linkin Park rocked. The sound was a little off because they were performing inside but in an open area so the sound traveled each way. Their songs till hit me and played with my feel strings. This whole day did I had a bad week personally and somehow this con changed it around. I will be attending or trying to attend BlizzCon in the years to come. One day, one trip, and this became one of my favorite cons of the year. Thank you Blizzard and now my con season is over.