NEWS

Legendary Game Universes and Esports Superstars Take Center Stage at BlizzCon® 2017

Brendan Frye  X  Nov 5, 2017 

Blizzard Entertainment’s annual community celebration showcases new
content for the company’s blockbuster games

Dominating runs by world-class competitors in Overwatch®,
StarCraft
® II, Hearthstone ®, Heroes of the
Storm
®, and World of Warcraft®
esports thrilled live attendees and viewers around the globe

IRVINE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--#BlizzCon--At BlizzCon®
2017
, more than 30,000 players gathered to experience the latest
updates to their favorite Blizzard games and cheer on top esports
competitors, with millions more joining online. Over two days packed
with developer panels, friendly competition, and live entertainment, the
Blizzard community learned about and went hands-on with new heroes, new
gameplay updates, and new expansions coming to the company’s blockbuster
franchises.

Attendees and viewers also witnessed the dramatic conclusions to three
esports championships and three exhibition-style competitions:

StarCraft® II World Championship Series Global Finals

Winner: Rogue

With two championship titles already under his belt in 2017, Rogue
arrived on the global stage at BlizzCon as a favorite to win the whole
tournament. Once he got warmed up in the grand final against soO, he
showed the world he definitely deserves the title of WCS Global Champion
with a 4–2 series win.

Heroes of the Storm® Global Championship Finals

Winning team: MVP Black

MVP Black and Fnatic met in the final match of the HGC Finals after both
teams moved past the semis with 3–0 wins. When the dust settled, it was
MVP Black standing tall over the Swedish powerhouse with a 3–1 victory
after a barnburner of a finale. MVP Black’s unwavering determination and
dedication to their craft was enough to secure them their first trophy
at BlizzCon.

World of Warcraft® Arena World Championship

Winning team: ABC

The European streak continues as ABC sweeps Panda Global in the most
decisive championship match in the history of the tournament. Working
against a hostile crowd, ABC triumphed behind the Arcane Mage play of
Alex ‘Alec’ Sheldrick to bring the WoW Arena trophy to Europe for the
fourth straight year.

Overwatch® World Cup

Winning nation: South Korea

South Korea was always expected to be the “final boss” at BlizzCon—and
runner-up Canada fought valiantly in taking a single map—but in the end
the story finished as expected. Ryujehong and company’s sudden
vulnerability didn’t make a difference as South Korea goes two-for-two
in Overwatch World Cup Championships.

Hearthstone® Inn-vitational

Winning team: Grimestreet Grifters

After two days of frenetic and varied play among the 12 community
personalities, the Grimestreet Grifters—comprised of Andrey 'Reynad'
Yanyuk, Hakjun 'Kranich' Baek, and Pathra Cadness—emerged victorious.
The best-of-11 finals saw the format of each game drawn from a sealed
envelope, and players were individually eliminated from the stage until
the Grifters claimed the trophy 6–5 over the Chillblade Crusaders.

StarCraft: Remastered Ultimate Title Fight

Winner: Bisu

Although Lee “Jaedong” Jae Dong and Kim “Bisu” Taek Yong’s lengthy
careers largely overlapped, they hardly ever played each other outside
of team leagues. That changed when the two StarCraft legends met in the
Ultimate Title Fight, a best-of-five showmatch with $25,000 on the line.
In the fifth and final game, Bisu seemed to get a read on Jaedong’s
aggressive strategy, and managed to hold him off to take the series 3–2.

In addition to all the epic esports action, Blizzard made several major
announcements for its games at the show, including:

World of Warcraft

  • Battle for Azeroth™—In the seventh expansion to World of
    Warcraft
    , the war between the Horde and the Alliance reignites
    as players embark on a journey to recruit new allies, race to claim
    the world’s mightiest resources, and fight on several fronts to
    determine which faction will lead Azeroth into its uncertain future.
  • WoW® Classic—In addition to a new
    expansion, Blizzard also announced early plans to develop a gameplay
    experience that recaptures players’ first journeys into the original World
    of Warcraft
    .

Hearthstone

  • Kobolds & Catacombs—A new Hearthstone expansion,
    coming in December, will bring players down into the dungeons beneath
    Azeroth—and equip them with 135 new cards.
  • Dungeon Runs—Kobolds & Catacombs brings with it a
    brand-new, highly replayable single-player game mode for Hearthstone
    featuring challenging, high-stakes subterranean journeys inspired by
    the classic fantasy dungeon crawl. Dungeon Runs are free for all
    players; no pre-built decks are required for entry.
  • New Legendary Weapons—For the first time in Hearthstone,
    Legendary weapons are coming – and every class will get one!
  • Free Legendary Cards—To celebrate the new expansion, all
    players will receive a free legendary minion, Marin the Fox, on
    November 6, as well as a free random legendary weapon for
    logging in when Kobolds & Catacombs launches in December.
  • Eager treasure seekers can pre-purchase the new expansion card packs
    in a special 50-pack bundle for $49.99 and receive the jewel-encrusted
    “For the Hoard!” card back for free!

StarCraft II

  • StarCraft II going free-to-playStarting November 14, players
    will get free access to the acclaimed Wings of Liberty®
    campaign, ranked ladder play, and all Co-Op Commanders up to level
    five.
  • Mira Han and Matt Horner—the newest Co-op Commander for StarCraft
    II’s
    popular Co-Op mode is actually two commanders in one:
    command a devastating mixture of high-powered Dominion air units as
    Matt Horner and fast-moving ground units as Mira Han.
  • War Chest Season 2—Following the success of this year’s War
    Chest, StarCraft II will once again offer a fresh batch
    of seasonal content for players in support of StarCraft II esports.

Heroes of the Storm

  • Hanzo and Alexstrasza—Two new heroes, both dragons in their own
    right, will bring new and dramatically different styles of play to the
    Nexus in Blizzard’s fast-paced MOBA, Heroes of the Storm,
    later this year.
  • 2018 Gameplay Update—Several in-game changes are coming to Heroes
    of the Storm
    in the near future, including a wider
    field-of-view camera, new Mercenary mechanics, and other core gameplay
    updates.
  • Voice Chat—Players in a party will automatically use Blizzard
    Voice Chat (unless they opt-out) and teams will have the choice to
    opt-in.
  • Performance-Based Matchmaking—Lets the player’s personal
    performance in matches directly influence their matchmaking rating
    whether they win or lose.

Overwatch

  • Moira—A new support hero, the life-draining geneticist named
    Moira, will soon be joining the roster of Overwatch, Blizzard’s
    acclaimed team-based shooter.
  • Blizzard World—An amusement park celebrating the worlds of Diablo®,
    StarCraft,
    and Warcraft® serves as
    the location for Overwatch’s newest map.
  • “Honor and Glory”—The latest in the acclaimed series of
    animated shorts released for Overwatch takes viewers
    into Reinhardt’s past as he wrestles with a decision of whether to
    answer Winston’s call to join the newly reforming Overwatch.
  • Overwatch League—The inaugural season’s 12 city-based teams
    will sport in-game home and away uniforms and face off in the league’s
    Atlantic and Pacific divisions. League matches will be played over
    four days each week of the regular season, which starts January 10,
    2018. Watch on Overwatchleague.com
    and on the forthcoming Overwatch League companion app.

For more information on the celebration of games, players, and esports
excellence at BlizzCon 2017, or to watch VODs of the action with the
BlizzCon 2017 Virtual Ticket, visit www.blizzcon.com.

About Blizzard Entertainment, Inc.

Best known for blockbuster hits including World of Warcraft, Hearthstone,
Overwatch, the Warcraft, StarCraft, and Diablo
franchises, and the multi-franchise Heroes of the Storm, Blizzard
Entertainment, Inc. (www.blizzard.com),
a division of Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ: ATVI), is a premier developer
and publisher of entertainment software renowned for creating some of
the industry’s most critically acclaimed games. Blizzard Entertainment’s
track record includes twenty-one #1 games* and multiple Game of the Year
awards. The company’s online-gaming service, Blizzard Battle.net®,
is one of the largest in the world, with millions of active players.

*Sales and/or downloads. Based on internal company records and reports
from key distribution partners.

Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-looking Statements: Information in
this press release that involves Blizzard Entertainment's expectations,
plans, intentions or strategies regarding content for the company’s
games and esports programs are forward-looking statements that are not
facts and involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Factors that
could cause Blizzard Entertainment's actual future results to differ
materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements set
forth in this release include unanticipated product delays and other
factors identified in the risk factors sections of Activision Blizzard’s
most recent annual report on Form 10-K and any subsequent quarterly
reports on Form 10-Q. The forward-looking statements in this release are
based upon information available to Blizzard Entertainment and
Activision Blizzard as of the date of this release, and neither Blizzard
Entertainment nor Activision Blizzard assumes any obligation to update
any such forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements believed
to be true when made may ultimately prove to be incorrect. These
statements are not guarantees of the future performance of Blizzard
Entertainment or Activision Blizzard and are subject to risks,
uncertainties and other factors, some of which are beyond its control
and may cause actual results to differ materially from current
expectations.


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