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Tracking the references in Blizzard World, Overwatch’s new map

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Blizzard World is chock full of references to the developer’s other iconic properties

Ah Blizzard World, you beautiful so-and-so. Overwatch’s newest map, first announced at BlizzCon 2017, is themed all around the Blizzard universes. There are entire areas referencing Warcraft, Diablo and Starcraft with smaller buildings devoted to their spin-off games like Heroes of the Storm and Hearthstone.

Overwatch is, of course, missing from the theme park. After all, it would be pretty weird to play Overwatch inside an Overwatch themed areas as the characters from Overwatch. But, the games that are referenced are referenced heavily.

What’s that? You haven’t played those other games? You just play Overwatch and you don’t get the references? Well, we won’t tell anyone and can even help you out. Let’s walk through Blizzard World together and talk about all the fun and clever references.

Stormwind

The map starts off for the attackers inside of the Hearthstone Tavern. This reference should be pretty easy to get since it’s named after the game itself. Hearthstone is a collectible card game that was spun off from the Warcraft universe. After the tavern, players will find themselves in front of the massive gates of Stormwind.

But before we travel into the Alliance’s capital city, let’s take a detour to the left. In a small nook under the stairs, we find the Lost and Found Vikings. Serving as the theme parks lost and found area, the three vikings pictured are from Blizzard’s 1992 puzzle game, Lost Vikings. Heroes of the Storm players might also recognize them as playable heroes in that game as well.

Finally, it’s time to go up the stairs of Stormwind. The front gate is filled with five statues: Danath Trollbane, Kurdran Wildhammer, Archmage Khadgar, Alleria Windrunner, and General Turalyon. These heroes of the Alliance are also seen in front of the real Stormwind inside of World of Warcraft.

Charging through the gate will bring you into Stormwind itself. To the right is the Flight to Duskwood ride, where players can mount a Gryphon and fly from Stormwind to the neighboring zone of Duskwood. To the left of the gate is the Fargodeep Mine ride. This references a small questing hub in the zone of Elwynn Forest, somewhere low level players still quest in to this day.

By the dock, just past Fargodeep Mine, we have the infamous Snaxxramas. This is of course a reference to Naxxramas, one of Vanilla WoW’s most difficult and famous raids. The raid took place in a floating Necropolis (which can be seen floating above Snaxxramas) and housed Kel’Thuzad, the infamous Lich from Warcraft III in service of Atrhus, the Lich King. Snaxxramas offers some adorable food items like Death Wings, referencing the flaming dragon Death Wing from the Cataclysm expansion.

While those are the cool, big features from Stormwind, there are some cute gift shops scattered around that house holy weapons like the Ashbringer and cute Alliance backpacks.

Starcraft

While the Attackers start in the Hearthstone tavern, The Defenders get to have fun in the Heroes Arcade. This small, purple space references Heroes of the Storm, Blizzard’s MOBA game. We have the Azmo-Dunk basketball game for Azmodan’s basketball skin. And what would an arcade be without Skee-ball shaped like Murky.

Outside of the Heroes Arcade is The Nexus Experience, which basically seems like a giant gift shop/museum dedicated to Starcraft. In front of the Nexus is the Pylon Terrace cafe, filled with more fun food and some gorgeous Starcraft art. There are Siege tanks and all sorts of other cool, Starcraft items in and around this area.

Diablo

Once you exit the Starcraft area, you’ll come to the Reign of the Black King ride. This is a reference to the mid-boss of Diablo III, Act I. Leoric, also known as the Black King or the Skeleton King, was a bad, bad king man who got corrupted by Diablo. He then, of course, turned into a big skeleton with a big mace and you have to kill him. This ride, the Reign of the Black King, will take us (and the Payload) through his creepy manor and ultimately up to his lavish throne.

Unfortunately, there isn’t much Diablo here other than the giant castle and a few souvenirs. However, behind the throne is a super cool park surveillance area.

The Environment

If you thought we were done, you were sorely mistaken. There is so much more to this map! Players are able to walk through maybe a third of the overall park according to the map. However, other areas can easily be seen. From Stormwind harbor, players can see Murlock Island, a reference to the creepy frog monsters of World of Warcraft. Past that, off in the distance, you can see the gates of Orgrimmar, the Horde capital city.

In Orgrimmar, we also have the start of the giant Hellscream rollercoaster. This is a reference to Grommash and Garrosh Hellscream. Grommash was a Horde hero turned villain turned hero again in Warcraft III. His son, Garrosh, succeeded Thrall as Warchief of the Horde before eventually turning evil, eating the heart of an old god, and becoming a giant raid boss for both factions to fight. He eventually sent us traveling back in time to another planet before meeting his end in Warlords of Draenor.

Above the Hellscream, a giant ferris wheel looms in the distance. In the center, you can see the Darkmoon Faire emblem. The Darkmoon Faire is a monthly celebration of all things mysterious in WoW. It starts on the first Sunday of every month. You can also see the Tyrael’s Fall ride as well as Journey to Aiur. Tyrael is a angel from Diablo who has left heaven to serve the humans on earth. Aiur is the homeworld of the Protoss race from Starcraft, and is a very spiritual location for them.

From the entrance of Blizzard World, near the Hearthstone Tavern, player can enter the Ancient Curios gift shop and see into the Stormwind district areas. On the right is the Merchant District filled with the Stockade and another gift shop in the shape of the Auction House. On the left is the Mage District, where an herb shop and a magic show supposedly exists.

Looking at the map will net players even more fun easter eggs. Next to the Hellscream is the Siege or Orgrimmar, named after the raid where players fight Garrosh. Above that is the Zepplin landing, a travel location in Orgrimmar where players can catch airships to other, far away locations. Behind the Darkmoon Ferris Wheel, the entire Darkmoon Faire can be visited. Next to Darkmoon is Blackrock Mountain, another zone in World of Warcraft.

The tram system in the park seems to be Overlords, the Zerg race’s creepy, floating balloons from Starcraft. Next to the Journey to Aiur is the Command Center Lift Off, a ride inspired by the Terran race’s base in Starcraft, and the Tristram Cathedral from Diablo. There are lots of fun Diablo locations around here as well, like the Den of Evil and the Caldeum Market.

Finally, behind The Nexus Experience is the Hatchery Petting Zoo (based off of the Zerg’s base) and the Spawning Pools Water Park (based off of the Zerg’s barracks). When you put all of that together, it makes the wonderful Blizzard World.

Please enjoy your stay.