Video Games

Gaming Week in Review: Chris Metzen Retires, Steam Review system Update, Hearthstone Bundle



Chris Metzen retires from his position at Blizzard Entertainment.

If you’ve ever played a Blizzard game, you might recognize the handiwork of Chris Metzen, Senior Vice President of Story and Franchise Development at Blizzard Entertainment. If you don’t know what he looks like, you will most certainly recognize his voice. From the character Thrall from the Warcraft franchise to the standard marine unit of the Starcraft series, Metzen has voiced a wide array of characters in the many games he has helped create.

Metzen recently announced that as of September 2016 he will be retiring from his position at Blizzard Entertainment. A heartfelt letter from Metzen to his fans was posted on the World of Warcraft online forums by Community Manager Kaivax on Metzen’s behalf. The letter expresses Metzen’s admiration for the teams he has worked with, his appreciation for the support of his fans and how proud he is of all that he has accomplished while working for Blizzard.

Starting as a graphic designer for the company back in 1993, Metzen eventually shifted into the role of a creative director after helping create the fictional universe for the Diablo franchise. He went on to help create the fictional universe for the Warcraft, Starcraft and Overwatch franchises as well. One popular example of Metzen’s work is the character Soldier 76 from Overwatch, who was inspired by the main character of a graphic novel series created by Metzen.

 

The Steam Review system is being updated by Valve to improve performance and discourage abuse.

Since it’s debut in 2013, the Steam Review system on Valve’s popular Steam gaming platform has been a great tool for gamers looking to separate the wheat from the chaff when it comes to finding new sources of entertainment. Despite its current usefulness, Valve has recognized that the Steam Review system still has room for improvement and have announced their plans for its latest update

The new update will include expanded search options that will allow consumers to search based on specific parameters, such as how many copies of the game were purchased on the Steam platform or by how many were claimed via game keys given away by the developers or sold by third party distributors. It will also let you divide the type of reviews so that you can see only positive, negative or both.

Some of the system abuse issues that Valve hopes this update will circumvent include developers sending out large amounts of free keys and claiming them as sales and the practice of developers taking down their games and reposting them under new names to eliminate negative reviews.

One of the ways Valve hopes to combat these problems is to rank reviews from those who received the game from a source other than Steam itself lower than those who purchased the game on the platform itself. Valve has also announced it intends to cut ties with any developers found abusing the system in the future.

 

Hearthstone Welcome Bundle and Tyrande Whisperwind priest hero arrive in the latest update.

Hearthstone is a popular virtual card game by Blizzard Entertainment, but the barrier to entry at this point can be kind of intimidating with card packs costing $1 each the majority of active players already having substantial collections.

In what seems to be an effort to even the playing field and drawn in new players, Blizzard is now offering the Hearthstone Welcome Bundle. The bundle costs $5 and comes with 10 classic set packs and guarantees that buyers will get one of the classic set class specific legendary cards. Whether you’re new to the game or are just looking to fill out your collection.

In addition to this bundle, Blizzard has added a new hero portrait for the priest class. Priests can now be represented by Tyrande Whisperwind, the night elf High Priestess of Elune from Warcraft 3 and World of Warcraft.

Some other minor updates include an update to the suggested deck recipes for specific classes and the removal of certain cards from the Arena format.


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Mathew Brock

Mathew Brock