Heroes of the Storm’s recent Dark Nexus content drop brought more to the game than new, albeit very cool looking, skins for Gul’dan and Alarak. With a new menu screen and thematic direction, plus an excellent comic titled ‘Rise of the Raven Lord’, it was Blizzard and the Heroes of the Storm team’s effort to expand and dive deeper into the world and lore of the Nexus. A first step in what will be a continuing narrative theme for the remainder of the year.
With the Nexus serving as a mythical and fantastical place that allows characters and heroes from every Blizzard franchise you can think of (yes, even Lost Vikings) to come to together in one place – it’s probably overdue that we got a story that deals with the goings on in the land of the Blizzard MOBA.
Recently we had the chance to chat Dark Nexus with Heroes of the Storm game director Alan Dabiri to talk briefly about the new lore and the challenges in creating something new in a place where Overwatch, Warcraft, StarCraft, and Diablo co-exist.
On the decision to delve deeper into the lore of the Nexus.
“While we continue to look forward to bringing Blizzard heroes into the Nexus, we also wanted to explain a little more about what the Nexus is all about. Until now, we’ve mostly waved our hands as we brought in existing Blizzard characters and didn’t do much to address the Nexus. We feel now is a great time to dive deeper into the lore of Heroes of the Storm to provide better connections between everything coming into the game, and to allow us to explore entirely new ideas.”
On creating a new Blizzard-verse that contains all other universes.
“The team is always brainstorming and throwing around crazy ideas. We’ve been discussing taking a deeper dive into the universe of the Nexus for some time, and now was a great time to jump into it head-first. The Dark Nexus is just one piece of the overall narrative we’ll be exploring this year."
On using existing Battlegrounds or non-franchise specific Heroes of the Storm content as a jumping off point.
“The Dark Nexus is an entirely new concept and design that we haven’t revealed in previous releases.”
On juggling all the existing Blizzard franchises when looking at new stories, characters, and places.
“It really is a great problem to have. With the concept of the Nexus, anything is possible. We have the honour of bringing existing Blizzard heroes into the game, but we are also completely open to digging into any other wild ideas we might come up with. The Mecha Storm content drop is a great example of us exploring cool themes we’re excited about. With the Dark Nexus, we get to turn towards a narrative that’s connected to the bigger picture of the Nexus, Realm Lords, and events that are unfolding.”
On using the Raven Lord and the Dark Nexus aesthetic to drive content.
“The Raven Lord has seen a threat looming in the future. While the power of the Dark Nexus had previously been locked away, he now believes he has no other choice than to unleash and harness some of that power to accomplish his goals. The Dark Nexus versions of Gul’dan and Alarak are part of the destructive power he now wields to combat these coming perils.”