Heroes of the Storm‘s esports league is encouraging fans to cheer for their teams … with money. People watching the best players compete in Blizzard’s MOBA (multiplayer online battle arena) can use Twitch’s Cheer for Bits feature to unlock in-game rewards inside Heroes of the Storm.
Cheers are a Twitch currency that you can buy for real money. 100 bits costs $1.40. You can then send them to Twitch streamers as a kind of tip. When you send Cheers to specific teams during the ongoing Heroes Global Championship (which will conclude with a world championship event in November during Blizzcon in Anaheim, California), you can unlock Heroes of the Storm cosmetic items like banners and mounts (which don’t impact the actual game, but they can look good). You unlock these items based on individual cheering, combined cheering for a single team, and total cheering for all teams combined.
Cheering for teams will also unlock you emotes for Twitch that you can use in the site’s chat.
“The esports scene lives on Twitch, and I am ecstatic to see Heroes of the Storm continue its growth on the platform in the coming years,” Andrey “Reynad” Yanyuk, chief executive officer of the esports team Tempo Storm, said in a press release sent to GamesBeat by Blizzard. “The HGC Cheer reward system is a progressive and innovative way for fans to support their favorite teams and players. More importantly, it’s true to the way fans consume Heroes esports, and a natural fit for the HGC ecosystem.”
Blizzard announced a partnership with Twitch earlier in the year which promised collaborations like this that would awards Twitch users for in-game goodies. We’ve already seen Twitch and Blizzard use the strategy in the hit team-based shooter Overwatch.