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    Bethesda Confirms Fallout 76 Bans For Accessing Developer Room

    By GameInformer,

    Last week, Fallout 76 players discovered that it was possible to access a developer room within the game, which let non-developers produce every item in the game and talk to an unused non-playable character in the room. At the time, it was rumored that Bethesda was banning players who got into the room and agreed to unban them if they explained how exactly they got in. Bethesda has now confirmed that they are banning players who have seen the hidden room.

    In a statement posted on their Polish Facebook, with an official English translation given to Eurogamer, Bethesda explained that third-party software is required to access the developer's room and thus those players are getting banned.

    "We are looking into accounts where players have obtained items by accessing areas of the game that are not intended for the public," Bethesda wrote. "These areas are only accessible to PC players that are using 3rd party applications to get into these areas... In an effort to ensure the integrity of these characters and accounts, these accounts are being temporarily disabled pending further investigation."

    Basically, Bethesda has no idea how people got in, but they believe it to be an intention transgression using software not designed by them, and they're looking into how. The developer has since moved the location of the room, but ever-persistent players are still finding traces of it, presumably at risk of a temporary ban.

    Fallout 76 is currently available for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.

    [Source: Eurogamer]

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    Our Most Anticipated Adventure Games Of 2019

    By GameInformer,


    With 2018 behind us, it's time to look forward to the new titles coming our way this year. From Campo Santo's gorgeous, new story-driven adventure taking place in Egypt to trying to escape Hell with your best friend, it sounds like this year will have some great games with unique premises. Here are our most anticipated adventure games.

    Note: Entries are listed in alphabetical order.



    Release: 2019
    Platform: PC, Mac

    2016's Oxenfree wowed us with its spooky tale, well-written characters, and snappy dialogue. Now, developer Night School Studio is working on a new project, titled Afterparty. It looks to have similar aesthetics and a similar focus on narrative, but the story is something altogether different. In Afterparty, you find yourself stuck in Hell with your best friend. The only way to escape is by beating the devil at his own game: drinking. If you can out-drink the devil, that's your ticket back to the land of the living. 



    Beyond Blue

    Release: 2019
    Platform: PS4, Xbox One, PC, Mac

    From the creators of platformer Never Alone comes a very different game, called Beyond Blue. In Beyond Blue, you play as Mirai, the lead of a newly formed research team that makes discoveries deep inside the ocean. Your tasks revolve around solving human-made threats like plastic waste and oil spills. Developer E-Line Media partnered with BBC to make the experience feel as real as possible, with an educational tone that teaches you about ocean-related problems as you play.




    Release: 2019
    Platform: PC

    Taking place in a cyberpunk world, you play as a courier of a semi-legal delivery company called Cloudpunk. However, during your first night shift, everything changes. As you jaunt around the city by car and foot, you uncover a mystery that continues to unravel as you speak with A.I. and the city's inhabitants. 



    Concrete Genie

    Release: 2019
    Platform: PS4

    Pixelopus, the developer behind the mesmerizing rhythm game Entwined, showed off Concrete Genie for the first time during 2017's Paris Games Week. Concrete Genie tells the story of Ash, a young boy living in a small fishing town named Denska, who discovers he can bring his paintings to life. He uses this power to escape real-world hardships, and build a magical retreat of his own through his creations. You use the DualShock 4 motion sensor to create beautiful backdrops and creatures that look like they're straight out of Where the Wild Things Are. Concrete Genie's beautiful aesthetics and creative gameplay could make it a stand-out adventure game this year.



    The Dark Pictures Anthology: Man of Medan

    Release: 2019
    Platform: PS4, Xbox One, PC

    Supermassive's Until Dawn was a great horror game inspired by slashers, where we controlled the decisions of a gang of teenagers faced with terrifying circumstances. The Dark Pictures: Man of Medan is a new, episodic adventure game from the developer, acting as a horror anthology about four characters stuck on a haunted ship following a storm in the South Pacific.



    In The Valley of Gods

    Release: 2019
    Platform: PC, Mac

    Although Firewatch developer Campo Sampo remains tight-lipped on this new project, we've been curious about it ever since it first appeared at The Game Awards in 2017. The cinematic trailer showed Egyptian landscapes and two women exploring ruins. In The Valley of Gods follows protagonists Rashida and Zora, who are given "one last shot at the adventurous life," according to its Steam page. If Firewatch's excellent storytelling is anything to go by, this next project could be just as captivating.



    Kentucky Route Zero Act V

    Release: 2019
    Platform: Switch, PS4, Xbox One, PC, Mac

    Following the story of an old trucker named Conway, the magical journey of Kentucky Route Zero is filled beauty, tragedy, and fantasy in its mesmerizing portrayal of rural Kentucky. We've been waiting patiently from episode to episode to see this adventure conclude, with its most recent episode releasing in 2016. Cardboard Computer is bringing the complete game to consoles this year along with its final episode. We're eager to see the story all come together.



    Life is Strange 2

    Release: 2019
    Platform: PS4, Xbox One, PC, Mac

    Life is Strange 2 introduces new protagonists Sean and Daniel, two brothers who are faced with fleeing their home after a traumatic event. With its well-written characters, dire circumstances, and political themes, episode one was a strong starting point for the new direction of the series, and we're excited to see what comes next.



    Mineko's Night Market

    Release: 2019
    Platform: Switch, PC, Mac

    Inspired by simulation games like Animal Crossing, Mineko's Night Market is about a young girl who moves to a new home on an island overrun by cats. You spend your time exploring, crafting, and completing jobs and activities. The story follows a mysterious happening that the townfolks always thought was a myth. With its fun-loving portrayal of Japanese culture and adorable aesthetic, Mineko's Night Market is something to keep on your radar.



    The Occupation

    Release: February 5
    Platform: PS4, Xbox One, PC

    This investigative thriller is set in England during the late '80s. Playing as a journalist, you look into a terrorist attack that led the government to form a protective act. You rush against time, quite literally, since the game plays out in real-time. This means you might miss out on details if you're at the wrong place at the wrong time, and various characters follow routines and schedules. Plus, there's that deadline looming over your head. All this makes it sound like it'll be an intriguing and tense experience.




    Release: 2019
    Platform: Xbox One, PC

    Ooblets brings a unique and fantastical twist to farming. By planting Ooblet seeds, you then wait and cultivate these plants into fully blossomed Ooblets. Ooblets are animal-like companions that can be trained to do various things. You spend your time exploring the land of Oob, joining clubs, customizing your farm and character, and more.



    Psychonauts 2

    Release: 2019
    Platform: PS4, Xbox One, PC, Mac

    This follow-up to the wacky and mind-bending Psychonauts, which came out more than a decade ago, puts us in the shoes of the psychic Raz once again. This time, instead of learning the ropes at a Psychonauts summer camp, he's working with the best of the best at the Psychonauts headquarters. Here, he'll have to prove himself as the newest addition to the intern team and fight alongside his heroes. 




    Release: 2019
    Platform: PC

    This exploration game lets you explore a beautifully crafted desert with a hoverbike. With rolling sand dunes and colorful horizons, the most striking thing about Sable is its gorgeous aesthetic. The story follows an adolescent girl on a journey of self-discovery. Details remain slim at this point, but we're interested to see how Sable pans out when it releases later this year.



    Sea of Solitude

    Release: 2019
    Platform: PS4, Xbox One, PC

    Taking place in a submerged city, you follow Kay, whose loneliness has turned her into something no longer human. You spend time exploring, platforming, and puzzling as you uncover this world's mysteries. She encounters other monsters and attempts to find answers as to what she is and better understand what happened to her.



    Shenmue III

    Release: August 27
    Platform: PS4, PC

    Shenmue III is scheduled to finally release this year, bringing the long-awaited continuation of the epic saga and tale of revenge. With its share of delays and more than a decade gap since its prior installment, it's been a rocky and lengthy wait as we inch closer to release. It once again follows Ryo Hazuki's quest to find his father's killer, which has brought him to China. Creator Yu Suzuki has said in interviews that Shenmue III will not be a conclusion because he wants to continue the story in further entries.



    The Sinking City

    Release: March 21
    Platform: PS4, Xbox One, PC

    The Sinking City is set during the 1920s in the fictional town of Oakmont in Massachusetts. Here, you follow the story of a private investigator who is looking into a peculiar phenomenon where the city was flooded with no apparent cause. The city has been rendered nonfunctional and monsters have risen from the depths of the waters. Instead of mass hysteria, the citizens are strangely content with these less than ideal conditions, and the city is somehow drawing newcomers too.



    Subnautica: Below Zero

    Release: 2019
    Platform: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC, Mac

    Subnautica was one of 2018's best exploration and crafting games, bringing life to an underwater alien ocean in spectacular ways. Subnautica's various biomes are beautiful and sometimes terrifying, teeming with sea creatures that are both alien and familiar. Below Zero is Subnautica's first expansion, bringing icy glaciers and freezing temperatures with its arctic setting. It will also introduce a different protagonist as it brings a whole new chapter to Subnautica's story.

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    Two Simple Reasons To Avoid AC Odyssey’s Shadow Heritage DLC

    By GameInformer,


    In December, Ubisoft released the first (of three) episodes in Odyssey’s Legacy of the First Blade arc. When it launched, I wrote that players should wait before investing any time or money in the DLC; the story had potential, but not enough substance to spark a strong recommendation one way or the other. That isn’t true anymore. With the release of the second installment this week, we have a much clearer idea of how this DLC is shaping up – and it isn’t an encouraging one.

    I’ve boiled my complaints about this episode (called Shadow Heritage) down to two general points that encapsulate my disappointment. However, I can’t really talk about the second point without digging into some spoilers, so:

    Warning: This article contains spoilers for the Assassin’s Creed Odyssey DLC!

    With that out of the way, here’s why you shouldn’t bother playing Shadow Heritage.


    Reason One: It doesn’t add cool things.

    When you have a base game as sprawling and content-packed as Odyssey, the last thing the DLC needs to add is more of the same. Unfortunately, that’s basically what you’re getting here. The first episode did the same thing, but I had hoped that wouldn’t become a pattern. Instead, Shadow Heritage once again provides a few minor things that you couldn’t get before, but they don’t do much to make the gameplay feel different or interesting.

    You get one new ability called rapid fire in the hunter skill tree. This allows you to continuously shoot arrows without reloading, which costs a little adrenaline for each one fired. This new power, like death veil from the first episode, feels like it was wisely cut from the base game only to be unceremoniously reinserted here. It doesn’t open fun new possibilities in combat, and it doesn’t tie in thematically to anything you’re doing. As a late-game character with plenty of other cool archery abilities, I rarely found a reason to use it.


    The flamethrower you earn for your ship makes a little more sense in the context of the story. The antagonist is an admiral named The Tempest who is pursing this dangerous weapon for the enemy fleet. Of course, you can get it for yourself, and it is a powerful asset during naval combat, doing damage and setting enemy ships alight. On the other hand, I wouldn’t put naval combat high on the list of things I enjoy about Odyssey, so this upgrade is also underwhelming (and only useful in encounters that I prefer to avoid).

    Reason Two: It does add not-cool things.

    Shadow Heritage’s small gameplay changes don’t produce any major shifts, but at least they don’t actively detract from the experience. The same cannot be said for how this narrative wraps up.

    You may have heard about this by now, considering Ubisoft has already apologized to players for the way this episode ends. If not, here’s the short version: The assassin that you’ve been working with, Darius, has either a son (Natakas) or a daughter (Neema), depending on whether you’re playing as Kassandra or Alexios respectively. At the end of Shadow Heritage, your character has a child with Natakas/Neema – and you as the player have no ability to change that, which totally sucks.

    Why is this so uncool? I’ve seen people boil this down to a single problem, but for me, it’s a complex three-pronged failure.


    Railroading: Throughout the entire base game, you are given countless opportunities to choose your hero’s path. How will you resolve a conflict? Will you ask for a reward? Who will you have sex with? You can’t always predict the results, and sometimes external forces meddle to create surprising outcomes, but you always feel like you are at least in control of shaping Alexios’ or Kassandra’s actions regardless of what is happening around them. The forced ending in Shadow Heritage betrays that core foundation, taking away your agency and making your hero do things that can, in many ways, run counter to the vision of the character you’ve spent 70+ hours building. Maybe your hero isn’t straight. Maybe there’s another character that you imagine to be their soul mate. Maybe they like the mercenary life and don’t want kids at all. Ubisoft’s ending ignores and invalidates all of those options for the sake of a narrative twist that feels both rushed and forced.


    Natakas is Lame: I can’t speak to the Alexios path, but the guy who Kassandra has a baby with is a wimpy, uninteresting sad-sack. He’s the Assassin’s Creed analogue of Milhouse from The Simpsons. If players were given a choice whether or not to pursue a relationship with him, I’m confident that almost no one would. That just makes the forced relationship even more baffling; I would still be mad if the game railroaded players into a romance with another character – like Brasidas, for example – but I least I could understand what my Kassandra saw in the guy. When it comes to Natakas, the two of them don’t seem to have any chemistry, and Kassandra is waaaaay out of his league.

    Bad Romance: Lots of players like romance in their RPGs. They get very invested in particular characters, and they like when games react to and emphasize the relationships they’ve built. Assassin’s Creed Odyssey doesn’t really do that; it lets you build brief connections with certain characters that can culminate in one-night stands, but you don’t see many cutscenes or sequences that focus on or even acknowledge your hero’s romantic partnerships. I was okay with that, because no potential love interest is treated as any more significant than another. In this way, the ending of Shadow Heritage adds insult to injury, because it’s the only time Odyssey really zooms in on that aspect of Kassandra’s or Alexios’ story. You see them and a companion become parents, have a home, and build a life together – except you don’t get to see it with a person you’ve chosen. You have to watch it unfold with Natakas/Neema, who you probably don’t care about.


    Okay, maybe that point wasn’t as “simple” as the headline to this article suggests, but the bottom line remains the same: Shadow Heritage takes the potential of the first DLC episode and transmutes it into disappointment. If the Legacy of the First Blade felt like it was treading water before, now it feels like it’s drowning – and that makes it hard for me to get excited about the final episode of this arc.

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    Around the Verse

    By RSI,

    In this week’s update we see how hover bikes will work in the new flight model, and how devs are re-targeting animations to make female playable characters unique and authentic.

    View the full article

    Tides of Vengeance Part 2 Goes Live January 22, Azerite Armor Updates & Changes

    By Curse,
    Tides of Vengeance Part 2 Goes Live January 22
    Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
    There’s plenty to look forward to when Tides of Vengeance Part 2 goes live on January 22. Watch our Survival Guide to learn more.

    New Raid: Battle of Dazar’alor


    The Alliance will strike at the heart of the Zandalari empire—while the defenders of the Horde will rally to their new allies’ defense—in an epic new raid, Battle of Dazar’alor. This new raid provides both Horde and Alliance players with unique encounters for their faction—along with the opportunity to play through events from the opposite faction’s viewpoint. Learn more.

    PvP Season 2 Begins


    PvP Season 2 will begin and introduce an updated Conquest reward schedule, mounts, and gear. Players who earn 500 Conquest points in a given week through PvP activities including Arenas, Battlegrounds, and Assaults in War Mode will be still be able to choose a piece of gear from each week’s selection; in addition, they’ll now earn a Quartermaster’s Coin, which can be collected and ultimately used to upgrade pieces from this season’s Sinister Gladiator PvP set. Learn more.

    Mythic Keystone Dungeon Season 2 Begins
    The new Mythic Keystone Dungeon season opens opportunities for new rewards and a new challenge with the new seasonal affix: Reaping. High-level Keystones will now summon Bwonsamdi, the Loa of Death, to wreak some spectral havoc upon players’ dungeon run. As heroes kill enemies, the vanquished spirits will continue to linger in the mortal realm. At certain points throughout the dungeon, Bwonsamdi will resurrect these twisted souls, who will swarm the unfortunate adventurers in a final act of vengeance. (Blog coming soon.)

    Azerite Armor Updates


    With the release of Season 2, we’re introducing new epic Azerite pieces from PvP Season 2, the Battle of Dazar’alor raid, World Quest Emissaries, and from the Mythic Keystone vendor Thaumaturge Vashreen in Zuldazar and Boralus. These new items will have a fifth ring with additional new trait options. Learn more.

    Content Difficulty and Rewards Changes
    With a new season upon us and the Dazar’alor raid dungeon opening, we wanted to share some additional information on the changes coming to a variety of dungeon and outdoor world encounters including increases to both difficulty and rewards.

    • New Maximum Item Level: With great challenges come great rewards and the maximum possible item level will go up to 425.
    • Battle for Darkshore Warfront: Battle for Darkshore rewards will also increase to 400 from both the outdoor boss and from Warfront quest that can be completed once per cycle. The difficulty of the Warfront will increase however, and the item level required to queue will increase to 335. These changes will go into effect after the current Warfront cycle has ended. Until that time, players will still receive Season 1 rewards.
    • World Quest Emissary Rewards: World Quest Emissary weapon and armor rewards will also now scale up to 385 based on the player’s own item level. Rewards from the original Battle for Azeroth Launch World bosses will remain at item level 355 to stay on par with Uldir.
    • Dungeon Rewards and Difficulty: The difficulty of Heroic and Mythic dungeons will also be increase as follows: Normal–340, Heroic–355, and Mythic– 370(baseline)
    • Mythic Keystone Dungeons and PvP: During the first week of Season 2 Mythic Keystone Dungeon rewards will be capped at Mythic 6 quality (item level 385). PvP Season 2 end-of-match rewards will be capped at 385.
    • Seals of Wartorn Fate: Seals of Wartorn Fate are not being reset and this same currency can be used for Battle of Dazar’alor and Season 2 bonus rolls; the cap on how many can be held at once remains at 5.

    For additional insights on these changes, read the developer forum post.

    Tides of Vengeance Part 2: Azerite Armor Updates & Changes
    Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker)
    Since the launch of Battle for Azeroth, players have been empowering their Heart of Azeroth and collecting Azerite armor to gear up for the battles ahead. Since then, we’ve made a variety of adjustments to the system—and we have a few more updates coming with the second part of Tides of Vengeance on January 22 that we’d like go into more detail on today.

    With the release of Battle for Azeroth Season 2, we’re introducing new epic Azerite pieces that you can acquire through a variety of methods, including Season 2 PvP, the Battle of Dazar’alor raid, World Quest Emissaries, and from the Mythic Keystone vendor Thaumaturge Vashreen in Zuldazar and Boralus. These new items will have a fifth ring with additional new trait options and is available at Heart of Azeroth level 15.

    This new outer ring provides two choices of traits per specialization, giving players an opportunity to find items that have traits they particularly want—and the freedom to create new and interesting combinations that may not have been possible before. This additional ring of traits makes each item have a larger impact on your character’s overall power.


    Outer Ring:
    Powers that reside in the new outer ring provide two additional trait options for each of your character’s available specializations.

    • Moment of Repose (Discipline)
      • (Passive) Pain Suppression applies Atonement to the target and instantly heals them for 15,313.

    Second Ring:
    Powers that reside on the second ring from the outside will often be influenced by where you collected the piece of armor they’re found on. These powers can also be associated with specific class specializations.

    • Seductive Power
      • (Passive) Your spells and abilities have a chance to conjure Bwonsamdi’s spectral visage, beckoning you closer. If you approach him, gain 57 to all stats for 5 minutes, stacking up to 5 times. If you fail to heed his call, lose 1 stack.

    Third Ring:
    These powers generally benefit the performance of your in-game role—they’ll provide damage increases for DPS classes, increase damage mitigation for tanks, or bolster healing output for healers.

    • Bracing Chill
      • (Passive) Your heals have a chance to apply Bracing Chill. Healing a target with Bracing Chill will heal for an additional 2,574 and move Bracing Chill to a nearby ally (up to 6 times).

    Fourth Ring:
    These are defensive or utility-oriented powers for your class.

    • Vampiric Speed
      • (Passive) When an enemy you harmed dies, you heal for 6,361 and gain 93 Speed for 6 seconds.

    Fifth Ring:
    Azerite Empowerment is the power that resides at the center, and increases an armor piece’s item level by 5.

    New Traits to Discover
    You’ll also find new location-specific traits that scale with item level and are available on gear from the Battle of Dazar’alor raid, including:

    • Bonded Souls: Your spells and abilities have a chance to trigger a Soulbond for 15 seconds. During Soulbond, every 5 seconds you and your nearest ally are both healed for 3,456 and gain 141 Haste for 5 seconds.
    • Seductive Power: Your spells and abilities have a chance to conjure Bwonsamdi’s spectral visage, beckoning you closer. If you approach him, gain 26 to all stats for 5 minutes, stacking up to 5 times. If you fail to heed his call, lose 1 Stack.
    • Treacherous Covenant: Your primary stat is increased by 151 while you are above 50% health. You take 15% increased damage while below 20% health.

    Azerite Knowledge
    With the start of Season 2, we’re also adding 10 more ranks of Azerite Knowledge over the course of January 22 through March. Each rank of Artifact Knowledge increases the speed at which your Heart of Azeroth levels up.

    Tides of Vengeance Recap: Trait Updates and Additions
    With the launch of Tides of Vengeance on December 11, we replaced many of the Azerite traits we weren’t happy with and continue to iterate on various elements of the system to provide variety and flexibility in player gear choices.

    It’s a good time to keep an eye on the shifting tides of the Darkshore Warfront. We added many new Azerite Armor traits that are just waiting to be collected, including:

    • Ancients Bulwark: Standing still grants you Deep Roots, increasing your Versatility by 179. Moving instead grants you Uprooted, healing you for 259 every 1 second.
    • Apothecary’s Concoctions: Your damaging abilities have a chance to deal 1,262 Plague damage over 6 seconds, and your healing abilities have a chance to restore 2,415 health over 6 seconds. These effects are increased by up to 100% based on the target’s missing health.
    • Endless Hunger: Your Versatility is increased by 179. Moving near an enemy’s corpse consumes their essence, restoring 1,815 health.
    • Shadow of Elune: Your spells and abilities have a chance to increase your Haste by 465 for 15 seconds. At night, you also gain 10% movement speed for the duration.

    Reaching Friendly, Honored, or Revered reputation with the Champions of Azeroth faction now unlocks the appropriate quests to upgrade your Heart of Azeroth for all characters on your account.

    The cost to change Azerite traits has been reduced from 72 hours to 24 hours.

    We’ve also added a new way for players who participate in Mythic Keystone Dungeons to gain specific Azerite Armor. These players will be able to earn a new currency—Titan Residuum—which can be used to purchase specific items from Thaumaturge Vashreen now located in either Zuldazar or Boralus. You can read more in our forum post.

    Season 2 and the Battle of Dazar’alor are just around the corner—are you ready for the challenges that await?

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    Battle for Azeroth Season 1 Arena and RBG Title Cutoffs, WoW Esports in 2019

    By Curse,
    favicon.ico Announcement Regarding Recent MMO-Champion Account Deletions

    us-en.png US - Season 1 Arena and RBG Title Cutoffs
    Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
    With Battle for Azeroth Season 2 fast approaching, we wanted to give those looking to push for titles at the end of Season 1 an idea of what to aim for.

    What follows are the current rating cutoffs as of this post, for the respective titles. These are not the final cutoffs, which will change slightly based on continued play through the end of the season as well as any disqualifications that occur after the season ends, but can be used as a general estimate for what ratings are needed in order to qualify.
    • Dread Gladiator – Horde: 2962
    • Dread Gladiator – Alliance: 2859
    • Hero of the Horde: 2652
    • Hero of the Alliance: 2563

    Again, these are not the final cutoffs, which we won’t be able to determine until after the season officially ends.

    eu-en.png EU - Battle for Azeroth Season 1 Cutoffs
    Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
    With Battle for Azeroth Season 2 fast approaching, we wanted to give those looking to push for titles at the end of Season 1 an idea of what to aim for.

    What follows are the current rating cutoffs as of this post, for the respective titles. These are not the final cutoffs, which will change slightly based on continued play through the end of the season as well as any disqualifications that occur after the season ends, but can be used as a general estimate for what ratings are needed in order to qualify.

    • Dread Gladiator – Horde: 3022
    • Dread Gladiator – Alliance: 3069
    • Hero of the Horde: 2726
    • Hero of the Alliance: 2749

    Again, these are not the final cutoffs, which we won’t be able to determine until after the season officially ends.

    WoW Esports in 2019
    Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
    Today we are very excited to share details for the 2019 Arena World Championship (AWC) and rebranded Mythic Dungeon International (still MDI!), including increases to both programs’ prize pools, which will come from a portion of the sales of two new toys. Let’s get right into it.

    Arena Returns for 2019
    We are pleased to bring back the Arena World Championship in similar form as last year—just with a few fun twists. Here’s a visual representation of the system in 2019:


    North America and Europe: The NA and EU regions will have two Arena seasons each, with six cups per season. Each cup will see teams battle for their share of a USD $10,000 prize pool. This represents an increase over last year’s competition, with more cups and more chances for players to win. Like last year, each cup will award points. For each finals event, the top four point-earners per season from both NA and EU will compete for a USD $100,000 prize pool. The first cup begins on Feb. 8; signups start today and will close Monday, Jan. 28, at 10 a.m. PDT/6 p.m. CET.

    Asia-Pacific, China, and Latin America: These regions also will run cups based on the Arena World Championship ruleset. Signups for Korea, Taiwan/Hong Kong/Macau, Australia/New Zealand, China, and Latin America will kick off later in the year. Keep an eye on regional channels for more information.

    Arena World Championship Finals: At the end of the year, we will celebrate the global scope of Arena with the AWC Finals. Invitations will be extended to:

    • 1st place from NA and EU Season 1
    • 1st and 2nd place from NA and EU Summer Finals
    • Top point-earner from NA and top point-earner from EU
    • Winners of the China, APAC, and Latin America finals.

    Introducing the Mythic Dungeon International
    An invitational no more, we are pleased to announce the Mythic Dungeon International for 2019—a seasonal competition that will showcase the world’s best dungeon-running teams. We decided to update the name of the program in order to better reflect its increased scope and global reach.

    The Upgrades
    MDI will be split into two regions: MDI East (China, Korea, Southeast Asia, Taiwan, and Australia/New Zealand) and MDI West (North America, Latin America, and Europe). Here is how the year will flow:


    The Proving Grounds are a qualification period open to any player with a Blizzard Battle.net account in good standing. Think you’ve got what it takes to be Mythic Dungeon International champions? Grab a team of five players and prove it! All you and your team need to do is complete five level 14 Mythic Keystone Dungeons in time between February 26 and March 12. (Note: Keystone level is subject to change, and will be determined sometime after the start of Season 2, on Jan. 22.) If successful, you and your team will be granted access to the Tournament Realm, where you will be able to create max-level characters, equip them with the items you feel are most optimal, and build out talents as you please. You and your team will have access to the Tournament Realm for the duration of the season.

    Each season, those who have gained access to the Tournament Realm via the Proving Grounds will be able to participate in Time Trials—a limited number of attempts at the week’s dungeons during a designated time period, of which your team’s best results will be submitted automatically. Each week will alternate between East and West, beginning with the Time Trial in ending in the week’s Cup, a double-elimination bracket featuring the top eight teams for that week’s region. All teams on the Tournament Realm will be able to run in their region’s Time Trials every alternating week, which means more opportunities to participate in Cups.

    • Each Cup for MDI East and MDI West will be broadcast live on Twitch each weekend across six weeks. There is a USD $12,000 prize pool per Cup, as well as MDI points.
    • Points will be awarded each week according to results, which will be used to determine who will be invited to each end-of-season LAN final.
    • The end-of-season LAN events will be cross-regional, meaning the best teams of MDI East and MDI West will meet to race for their share of USD $100,000.
    • The Proving Grounds for MDI Season 1 for both East and West will begin the week of February 26, when keystone affixes roll over. Closer to the event we will share more information about how to participate, qualification specifics, and more.

    As both Arena and MDI grow, we want to give fans a chance to further support the programs—and have some fun along the way! Soon we will introduce two new in-game toys to our shop (details to follow). A portion of the sale of these toys will contribute to the prize pools for both WoW esports programs.

    These toys will go on sale in the spring. As the proceeds will contribute to the year’s final LAN event prize pools for AWC and MDI, those prize pools will be announced later this year.

    We can’t wait to get things started. Be sure to follow World of Warcraft on Twitter and Twitch to stay up to date on all the latest WoW esports news, and bookmark WorldOfWarcraft.com/esports so you don’t miss a thing!

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