Heroes of the Storm could be facing a crucial point in its life. Blizzard Entertainment gave its multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA) a 2.0 reboot last week, and it touted a big giveaway of heroes. The studio makes money from selling characters like Arthas the Lich King (one of Warcraft’s most important people), along with offering skins, loot chests, and other goodies. So handing out heroes to bring people back to the game is a significant step for Blizzard.

So far (and speaking just from my own observations here), we’re seeing more people playing and talking about the competitor to League of Legends and Dota 2. The chatter has increased on Twitter, and more streams and videos are appearing on Twitch and YouTube.

But from what we’re seeing, it’s still the same, player-friendly take on the MOBA — just with some free goodies. I logged in and played a bit to, living up to my long-held nickname of “Uther the Suckbringer” as I struggled with Heroes. I’m sure other people find it fun, but it’s just not my jam.

And that’s OK. What is interesting here is if the uptick of the chatter we’re seeing from people online corresponds with an influx of returning and new players to Heroes of the Storm 2.0. In the competitive free-to-play market, giving away goodies is important in retaining players.

But Blizzard is facing an even bigger question — will it have to give out more loot to keep any of these new players engaged a month or so down the line?

—Jason Wilson, GamesBeat managing editor

Watch PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds spanks Team GamesBeat.

From GamesBeat

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Heroes of the Storm’s 2.0 update is about rewards, not changing the game

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Beyond GamesBeat

Master x Master: Sexy Characters Doing MOBA and Diablo Things

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YouTubers Say They Can’t Make Money Covering Call of Duty: WWII

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As Esports Explodes, Will Valve’s ‘Dota 2’ Be Left for Dead?

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Why raiding is the biggest reason to be excited about Destiny 2

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