Blizzard Entertainment announced via the official Heroes of the Storm twitter account that their upcoming “Hero Brawler” game, Heroes of the Storm, will soon be entering into a Tech Alpha phase for testing. A limited number of players will be invited, but the reaction from the gaming community is extremely positive.
— Heroes of the Storm (@BlizzHeroes) March 3, 2014
According to the official news page on the Heroes of the Storm website, the development team for the game has been hard at work since the game was last publicly seen at BlizzCon 2013, save for a few shoutcasted streams on Twitch.tv from Blizzard. According to the post, they are about to invite a very limited number of players to join them in an initial phase of infrastructure and tech testing, dubbed the Technical Alpha phase.
Tech Alpha Phase for Heroes of the Storm
The game is said to be playable with much of the core experience present, but still remains in early stages of development. The game is not considered to be in a polished or finalized state, but after “extensive internal testing” Blizzard is ready to “crack open the Nexus for the very first time and invite some players to step inside.”
The goal of this testing phase is to help determine how the infrastructure and tech will function across a broader spectrum of PC systems and connection types. In addition, this phase of testing will allow the team to examine their hardware needs to make sure the game can be supported once it widely launches. Also posted on the page was the reiteration that Heroes of the Storm will continue to be updated and that invitees may encounter bugs and game features that are not yet implemented, in addition to temporary sounds, user interface elements, and graphics that could be considered temporary.
Who’s Invited, How Do You Get In?
According to Blizzard only a limited number of participants from the United States will be invited. The list will expand as the testing needs of the team grows over time. A few select international press sites and Blizzard community members will be included on top of the first round of invitees. The team stated that they are working hard to ensure that the game will be great for all players before expanding to international regions.
To be considered for the Tech Alpha, players will need to opt-in via their Battle.net account. Once logged in, go to the Beta Profile page found within Battle.net and make sure “Heroes of the Storm” is checked. Players are reminded that phishing scams are bound to make their way around the Internet in light of this news, so be careful about websites and emails asking for your login credentials.
Once the Tech Alpha officially kicks off, there will be no NDA in place. This means that the players in the Tech Alpha will be allowed to share their live gameplay streams on Twitch.tv, screenshots, blog entries, and anything else wherever they want. In fact, Blizzard stated, “we want you to know that it’s totally fine to share your thoughts about the game with others through any medium you please at that time.”
Heroes of the Storm was one of the “Most Anticipated Games of 2014” here at Gaming Illustrated. It positions itself uniquely and was easily the runaway hit of BlizzCon 2013. Seeing the game go into a Tech Alpha phase is incredibly encouraging.