Heroes of The Storm’s latest patch adds voice comms


It has been said that if you ever want to learn to swear in every language known to man (especially Russian), you merely have to play a few rounds of Dota 2 without disabling voice chat. Knowing this, Blizzard’s decision to include this as the latest standard feature of their softer, milder take on the MOBA genre comes as a bit of a surprise.

As of today’s patch, Heroes of The Storm now allows your team to share their exact and unfiltered thoughts on your performance without having to go through the trouble of typing them.

Looking at the full details of the voice comms addition, it’s not quite as bad as you might fear. Upon entering each match, non-partied players will be asked whether they want to join a team chat channel, and particularly foolhardy players can opt to auto-join in every match. If you are in a party and already playing with friends, you’ll be automatically added to voice chat, and there are on-screen indicators showing you who’s speaking at any given moment.

Blizzard have at least made basic efforts to prevent this being abused, as well. While relatively easy to mute and unmute individual voices, they’ve also added a new category of abuse complaint to their list of grumbles you can make about players. If an individual finds themselves tagged frequently for being abusive via voice chat, they may find their speaking privileges revoked while still allowing them to keep playing.

All in all, it doesn’t sound like too bad an implementation, but I can’t help but wonder whether this will raise the overall blood pressure of Heroes of The Storm’s playerbase just that little bit further. It’d be a shame, considering how easygoing it is compared to a lot of other games in the genre.

Also yes, I know the header art is from another Warcraft universe entirely, but I needed a picture of Thrall screaming.


  1. jeffy777 says:

    Well, as Tychus would say, “It’s about damn time!” For a game that is so heavily dependent upon teamwork (even moreso than other MOBAs since you have shared team XP), this is basically a mandatory feature. I’m honestly shocked they don’t add this sooner.

  2. GemFire81 says:

    It is important, even necessary to be able to talk to each other in a multiplayer game. I did not play 3000+ hours of WoW back in the day just because it was a fun game. I did it and all the people in my guild did it because meeting new people and making new friends and enemy’s is what made the experience amazing. Yeah there are guna be trolls , but to not have voice communication between players in a multiplayer game because of a handful of A-holes is the WRONG way to handle the problem.

  3. AreWeHavingFunYet says:

    This is going to be a disaster in the lower leagues and I don’t even mean flaming (though that too). Bronze/Silver/Gold are full of people who have no clue, but think they’re GMs.

    Up to this point, these people could only impart short, timeless bits of wisdom, like: “Focus Morales” or “don’t attack the tank, noobs”. Now they can dictate the whole game, with disastrous results.

  4. Hoot says:

    This is about 2 years too late. In the Preseason when me and a few other guys played regular and hit top rank we often talked about how much easier communication would be if we could just have in-game VOIP. Can’t believe it has taken them this long to implement it.

    I don’t play team games anymore (because it appears to be impossible for any current matchmaking technology to put 10 people of the same skill in any game; there is always one drongo, without exception, who ruins the game either intentionally through flaming/feeding or unintentionally by just being a new player) but if I did, I would still say in with the advent of Discord, this is perhaps too little, too late.

    • jeffy777 says:

      Completely agree. FPS games have had voice comms for over a decade and those games can often be more about individual performance than a team-effort, which is not the case in Heroes. In Overwatch, voice comms were there on launch day. Always wondered why Heroes was lacking in that department when it’s even more team-focused and very hard to carry individually. As you said, just wish it had come sooner.

      • Hoot says:

        Over and above this VOIP business, the fact that an individuals performance is so skewed in HotS is the reason I went back to 1v1 games and Dota 2 (if I felt the absolute need to play a team game).

        In HotS there is no such thing as a carry, but there are such things as feeders. Is someone dies repeatedly it really hurts the team as XP is shared, but if a player performs exceptionally, doesn’t die and is there with his team making good use of his abilities, etc, it doesn’t matter all that much as his power is tied to the overall team XP.

        It’s not like Dota 2 where someone that’s had a brilliant game can eventually 1v5 the enemy; you can have a brilliant individual game in HotS and still be 2 levels behind.

        Which sucks.

        • jeffy777 says:

          Again, completely. It’s definitely a game that is really only truly enjoyable with a team full of friends. Otherwise you just have to pray that the RNG is on your side and the feeders are on the other team.

  5. Asrahn says:

    Thank the heavens you can opt out, and when you do, you won’t hear the horrible screeches of people who wander off on their own and, upon their death, then wonder why their whole team didn’t follow them.

    • jeffy777 says:

      Played for several hours yesterday and honestly didn’t hear any of that. Haven’t muted a single person yet.

  6. frymaster says:

    So this game literally won’t install on my system. I have a relatively unusual – but nevertheless completely within the bounds of expected behaviour on windows – setup, in that my documents folder is actually a networked file share that lives on another computer. For no good reason, something in this game won’t install in this setup.

    A similar thing happened with GTA5 – I submitted a bug report and they fixed it. But with this game, I filled out a full bug report on their forums, and their response was to delete the post without explanation. So, hrmph.