Hello! We're just a few hours away from Blizzcon 2016's opening ceremony - it begins at 6pm UK time - and finding out which of his nice bowling shirts Mike Morhaime will be wearing to mark the occasion.

But that's not the only big news we're expecting from this year's show.

After literally decades of teasing and a severely overwrought ARG we should finally see the reveal of Overwatch's next hero: Sombra. The question at this stage is how exactly she'll be unveiled to the world. Please don't hack the stage. Please don't hack the stage. Please don't hack the stage.

This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Diablo franchise and rumours suggest a Necromancer-themed expansion might be on the cards. I've been offered an interview with the Diablo team tomorrow afternoon, so they better announce SOMETHING.

We tend to see either a new Hearthstone adventure or expansion during Blizzcon, so expect something along those lines. Probably a full expansion, given that A Night in Karazhan launched back in August.

Heroes of the Storm will inevitably see more hero reveals. Seriously, they produce them at an unbelievable rate.

And perhaps something about the future plans for StarCraft 2, unless they're saving that for the panel later on today.

Finally, with Blizzard story man, Chris Metzen having announced his retirement just a couple of months ago, I'm hoping he'll pop up to say his goodbyes to a community he's had a big hand in creating. Here's to you, Metzen!

Our live coverage of this event has finished

Coverage

14:07

Hello everyone!

They're letting me handle the livetext for this year's Blizzcon, which is very exciting.

14:08

I'm not heading into the show for another couple of hours, but I'm going to dash over and grab some pictures of the entrance itself. It'll be like you're right there with me.

14:11

Anyway, right.

Last night I went to a Blizzcon party hosted by Wowhead, the largest World of Warcraft database on the Internet.

Let me tell you, things got PRETTY wild.

14:12

14:13

Ugh, I'm actually a Horde player.

14:13

What can I say? The Alliance had better props on offer.

14:35

Percinho says:

erm... Am I missing something or does this not actually say when it starts?

The opening ceremony kicks off in about 3 1/2 hours.

So that's 6PM GMT.

I'll update the post now.

14:36

14:37

Nice to see Grandma Overwatch getting pride of place in this year's Blizzcon artwork. As is only right.

14:52

Alright, I've been to the entrance! Here's what that looks like.

14:53

14:54

14:55

14:55

Do you think all of these people are here for Blizzcon too?

14:58

Right, I'm off for some breakfast. Don't break anything.

16:25

Alright, I'm in. Had to fight my way through a lot of very enthusiastic Blizzard fans, but I've got a seat for the opening ceremony.

16:31

16:55

Oridan says:

By which I mean, have you seen Metzen anywhere? :p

Not yet! Hoping he gets a nice send off during the ceremony. Seems a nice man.

16:57

Baddamobs says:

I know, in my heart of hearts, that Diablo 4 isn't going to happen, but...I want to believe!

If they reveal Diablo 4, I'll eat my press pass.

17:00

We're still an hour away from things kicking off. Not sure what I'm supposed to do for the next 60 minutes...

17:02

Anyone fancy a game of Overwatch?

17:30

30 minutes! Are you guys still watching a WOW Arena stream?

17:32

Oh, we've got action here. Pre-show trailer!

17:33

A giant Reinhardt just walked past. My kind of people.

17:36

Looking back at Blizzard's 2016. It's been an alright year for them, hasn't it?

17:38

Someone next to me just shouted "For the Horde!"

17:38

I mean, I agree with him, but I'm trying to look like a serious games journalist here.

17:46

Did they just call their sofa the 'BlizzCouch'?

17:50

A nice little preview of Mike's bowling shirt this year. Looks to be his WOW Legion number. Nice.

17:50

Roughly 10 minutes until we see him in the flesh.

17:55

Bertie says:

HIYAAAAAA HAPPY SOMBRA

HELLO BERTIE

17:55

5 minutes!

17:58

Alright, here we go. Hopefully some surprises in store, despite the leaks.

17:59

Hey guys. I wonder if they might reveal a new Overwatch hero. That'd be neat.

18:01

And my WiFi died! Amazing timing.

18:02

10 years of Blizzcon! :')

18:03

A montage of Blizzard from roots to present day - a history lesson! Who's actually been to BlizzCon apart from Bratterz? The bloody show off.

18:03

That D4 die...

18:03

Professionalism has gone out of the window here. I've got a massive grin on my face.

18:04

LOVELY MIKE MORHAIME!

18:04

Back at it again with his WOW Legion bowling shirt.

18:05

Is that Thrall's voice doing the announcing?

18:06

It seems I'm a little ahead of the stream. Look down here for EARLY ANNOUNCEMENTS.

18:07

The stream glitches a bit for me... Skips back sometimes. Not like real-life... normally.

18:08

The first Blizzcon hosted 4000 attendees. Now that number is more than 25,000.

18:12

Allen Adham is rejoining Blizzard. He has decided to be "unretired"! He co-founded Blizzard with Mike Morhaime and Frank Pearce.

18:13

The next content update for WOW is in development. "It is going to be an awesome 2017 for the Alliance..." says Morhaime, to boos and cheers. Long pause. "And, for the Horde!" What a troll!

18:13

18:13

Mischief, a Fell Kitty pet, is coming. Hardly Sombra, is it? But now he's talking Overwatch!

18:14

Oh no. It's HAPPENING.

18:14

THE STAGE IS BEING HACKED.

18:15

And there we are! The inevitable Sombra reveal. This is actually, dare I say it... quite fun?

18:16

Sombra, Reaper and Widowmaker working together. Overwatch pals.

18:18

She uses an SMG, has a stealth ability and... hacks things?

18:20

AND A TELEPORT. Perhaps her Ultimate?

18:21

"Boop!"

Yeah, I'm a fan.

18:21

"I'm sure nobody saw that coming," says Morhaime.

18:21

Playable at Blizzcon! Expect impressions later on today.

18:23

There's another couple of maps on the way, plus a brand new Arcade mode.

18:24

Over to StarCraft 2, which is still seeing continued support from Blizzard. More co-op missions planned, plus a new co-op commander.

18:25

Right, now we're talking advanced AI research? Okay, let's see where this goes.

18:26

There's a fella from DeepMind on stage. He's really into artificial intelligence. That's his thing. Loves AI.

18:27

Collaborating with Blizzard to "open up StarCraft 2 to AI research around the world".

18:27

This will almost certainly lead to humanity's demise.

18:29

From a neww Overwatch hero to complicated AI research. Where can we possibly go next?

18:29

Esports, apparently.

18:30

Overwatch seeing its first Blizzcon tournament this weekend. The UK got knocked out, didn't they?

18:31

They should have asked me and Bertie to give it a shot. Sometimes we even use our ultimates at the same time!

18:33

Esports as far as the eye can see.

18:36

Blizzard are launching the Overwatch League, promising guaranteed salaries, contracts and loads of official support.

18:37

Bertie, you fancy it? This games journalism thing isn't going to last forever.

18:38

Oh yeah. Weird Al Yankovic will be closing out the show. Blizzard are such massive, massive dweebs.

18:39

"Let's remind the world what matters most is not winning, but how we are with each other," says Lovely Mike.

18:40

Malek86 says:

But what about Diablo!

Looks like I won't be eating my press pass after all...

18:40

Right. Heroes of the Storm.

18:41

I wonder if they might reveal some new heroes. I think they might reveal some new heroes.

18:43

The cheers are noticeably quieter for this game. You've got to wonder how big its playerbase actually is right now, compared to the likes of WOW, Overwatch & Hearthstone.

18:44

They are, in fact, revealing a new hero.

18:44

Varian Wrynn, off of World of Warcraft.

18:45

As Alliance characters go, he was alright. Watch that pre-Legion cinematic, if you haven't already.

18:47

gamecat says:

Sombra abilities now livehttps://playoverwatch.com/en-us/heroes/sombra/

18:48

Hang on, Varian is fighting Ragnaros. Both confirmed as upcoming heroes.

18:48

Oh my goodness, Sombra's ultimate sounds INCREDIBLE.

18:49

"EMP: Sombra discharges electromagnetic energy in a wide radius, destroying enemy barriers and shields and hacking all opponents caught in the blast."

18:49

Sorry, back to HOTS. Both heroes are playable at Blizzcon and Varian is coming to the live game real soon.

18:54

If you play 15 games of HOTS with a buddy, you unlock a Genji skin for Overwatch. I mean, that'll probably work.

18:55

That's Bertie and me playing 15 games of HOTS next week.

18:55

Anyway, Hearthstone!

18:55

Here comes the next expansion reveal?

18:56

Gadgetzan!

18:58

Hearthstone's Gadgetzan is a...shady, crime town?

18:58

YES. Another Hearthstone song. Now it's a party.

18:58

'Mean Streets of Gadgetzan'

19:00

The first of the town's notorious crime families is called..... 'The Grimy Goons'. That's a rubbish name for a crime family, isn't it?

19:01

'The Jade Lotus'. That's better, but I mean, they seem to be mostly Pandaren.

19:02

Holding out for the third family.

19:02

'The Kabal'.

19:04

Each family adds a new tri-class card. Huh.

19:05

gamecat says:

Where is Ben Brode? This guy is not fun.

Having a baby, I think. I like this guy though!

19:06

There's an amusing delay when each card is revealed, as the crowd rushes to read and understand its abilities.

19:06

Mean Streets of Gadgetzan set for early December.

19:07

Next up: Diablo 3!

19:07

Considering the Sombra leak was legit, that Necromancer artwork seems promising.

19:08

POLITICAL JOKE.

19:09

The original Diablo is being recreated in Diablo 3 to celebrate its anniversary. OKAY. YUP. THAT'LL DO IT.

19:10

"Special graphics filters to make the visual pixelated and grainy."

19:11

The anniversary patch will be on the PTR next week!

19:11

POLITICAL JOKE #2.

19:12

Two new zones being added to the game next year, if you have Reaper of Souls. Accessed via Adventure Mode.

19:13

And yes, there we are, the Necromancer!

19:14

The crowd seemed to enjoy that one, surprisingly.

19:15

Will be sold as part of a character pack next year.

19:15

And that's a wrap, Blizzard pals.

19:16

Sombra and the Necromancer both looks ace, despite not being huge surprises. Good show.

19:16

I'm off to try and hug Mike Morhaime.

19:17

See you soon, with some Sopmbra hands-on impressions!

19:17

The-Jack-Burton says:

Thanks Chris

Thank YOU, Jack.

Latest comments

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    madvalrockatansky 2 years ago
    Fucking fuck of fuck, the fucking necromancer ! fuckshit yeah !!! :D
    Oridan 2 years ago
    Love the voice of the necromancer
    ckyman2 2 years ago
    oh necromancer!!
    Oridan 2 years ago
    Necromancer!!! AAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH
    Nemesis 2 years ago
    Oh you beautiful people.
    ckyman2 2 years ago
    dammit I was one off xD
    MadJack1812 2 years ago
    Maybe just a nibble of the press pass Chris?
    Oridan 2 years ago
    Diablo remake? Niiiiice
    chrismorley 2 years ago
    Emphasis on the 3
    Oridan 2 years ago
    finally :D
    Baddamobs 2 years ago
    OH DIABLO!
    chrismorley 2 years ago
    he's awesome!
    Oridan 2 years ago
    Ben Brode is having a babby. Or his wife is anyway.
    GnollBoi 2 years ago
    The Jade Lotus... It's nice we get to see another side of Pandaren culture, aside from the very "THE ORIENT" we got on The Wandering Isles and Pandaria.
    gamecat 2 years ago
    Where is Ben Brode? This guy is not fun.
    GnollBoi 2 years ago
    Gotta love how Gadgetzan is a sprawling metropolis of a city, with a seedy underbelly.... A bunch of culture there and layers of depth. Too bad that's only in Hearthstone and not shown in WoW.
    Baddamobs 2 years ago
    Jesus, that weapon is too dangerous for Goblin hands.
    Oridan 2 years ago
    I'd like to see this Gadgetzan in that other warcraft game they have.
    Nemesis 2 years ago
    Sly Cooper Hearthstone
    Baddamobs 2 years ago
    @Orldan They're going to hold onto the stuff they have for as long as they possibly can: they know we're pretty thirsty for news >_>''''
    Oridan 2 years ago
    when is diablo omg
    gamecat 2 years ago
    Bribed to play HotS for Genji skin
    GnollBoi 2 years ago
    Most people don't get HoTS, it's the unnecessary game in the Blizz lineup.
    Baddamobs 2 years ago
    ONI GENJI LOOKS SUPER COOL!
    Nemesis 2 years ago
    I don't really 'get' HoTS.
    gamecat 2 years ago
    Sombra abilities now livehttps://playoverwatch.com/en-us/heroes/sombra/
    Oridan 2 years ago
    nice
    Oridan 2 years ago
    Varian?
    Baddamobs 2 years ago
    Man, Blizzard are into a real asymmetrical multiplayer phase.
    gamecat 2 years ago
    HotS (polite applause)
    Nemesis 2 years ago
    ESPORTS.But it's not about winning. So here's a video about people winning.
    GnollBoi 2 years ago
    Is Morhaime trying to get us to play nice? Doesn't he realize that screaming obscenities and death threats is 90% what esports is about? If you can't insult someone why play?!
    Oridan 2 years ago
    Will you be making a video of the press pass eating?
    Oridan 2 years ago
    i luv u gusy
    Malek86 2 years ago
    But what about Diablo!
    KD 2 years ago
    @Oridan Sky tv will take them to court for using the name and will be the first victims of our new skynet overlords...
    gamecat 2 years ago
    Not sure how this fits in with existing esports orgs
    GnollBoi 2 years ago
    I'm feeling like there will be very little news about actual games and developments..More... "ESPORT! ESPORT! ESPORT! HONKHONKESPORT!"
    Oridan 2 years ago
    Let's not forget that it's Diablo year, Morhaime. Where is my Necromancer?!
    Nemesis 2 years ago
    Shhhh stop being so shouty, sports people.
    chrismorley 2 years ago
    Yeah UK is out of the OW world champs. Dignitas are still in Heroes though, they're a UK team with UK players.
    chrismorley 2 years ago
    EEEESPORTS
    Oridan 2 years ago
    @KD Of course! That's why they're phasing out the battle.net name!
    KD 2 years ago
    battle.net changing name to skynet with the ai?
    chrismorley 2 years ago
    Its Joaquin Phoenix
    Nemesis 2 years ago
    Nice to see Capello still getting work....
    Mr_interesting_2011 2 years ago
    just me then :(
    Mr_interesting_2011 2 years ago
    Anyone else having problems with the steam cutting in/out
    Oridan 2 years ago
    Those are the baddies right? I don't play overwatch.
    Oridan 2 years ago
    She's working with the baddies!!
    Baddamobs 2 years ago
    Oh bugger.
    Baddamobs 2 years ago
    (Please don't hack the stage)
    Oridan 2 years ago
    I was hoping he'd say something about Warcraft Movie 2. (Yes I liked it and I want a sequel)
    Baddamobs 2 years ago
    Kitty hype.
    imagonnawin 2 years ago
    @smallblueslime that'd never happen, Hanjo wouldn't allow it.
    Jac 2 years ago
    Neon nipples
    Baddamobs 2 years ago
    @Pasco_God, I wish.
    Oridan 2 years ago
    Secret cow level hype
    Pasco_ 2 years ago
    DIABLO 4 CONFIRMED
    Bertie 2 years ago
    omg here we go! Stream has passed over to main stage
    Bertie 2 years ago
    He's watching a cartoon while all this is going on!!!!
    jorgeillescas 2 years ago
    Do you think there's any chance of Warcraft 4?
    Bertie 2 years ago
    My six year old son doesn't seem to be as pumped as I am
    Bertie 2 years ago
    HIYAAAAAA HAPPY SOMBRA
    Malek86 2 years ago
    Overwatch pets in next Diablo expansion?
    Jac 2 years ago
    Just when I thought there couldn't be anymore countdown timers I discover the Overwatch PTR needs to be downloaded separately. 3 hours and counting.
    Baddamobs 2 years ago
    I know, in my heart of hearts, that Diablo 4 isn't going to happen, but...I want to believe!
    Oridan 2 years ago
    By which I mean, have you seen Metzen anywhere? :p
    Oridan 2 years ago
    Have you spotted any retired loremasters yet?
    Holodrone 2 years ago
    Post deleted
    Percinho 2 years ago
    @Pasco_ I can;t believe they've not considered it, I think one of their biggest problems with it would be UI-based though. Would be interesting to see where they'd put it, especially on the mobile version.Maybe they make it the same as a secret but it has an icon instead of a ?.Good point about he standard rotation, I'd not considered that this is the last addition before the next rollover, which means it would have the least amount of time in Standard.
    Pasco_ 2 years ago
    @Percino non minion-based defensive effects in HS is a cool idea.Hope Blizzard are thinking that radically too, HS needs a big shake up right now. Maybe that kind of thing would wait for the next Standard rotation though?
    darekjozwik 2 years ago
    Necromancer back to Diablo :) #confirmed #blizzardOFFICIAL #blizzardLEAK
    JiveHound 2 years ago
    Literally a decade?
    Honeyman 2 years ago
    It's somewhat a given that Sombra will be shown. Getting another hero or at least a preview would be nice too.6-vs-6 Sombra matches would be mental.
    Percinho 2 years ago
    Good stuff. Can;t wait for the HS expansion announcement. I'm hoping for a new card type, something like a Accessory slot where you can put artifacts or relics or items which have an effect when your hero is attacked. I'm thinking something like the Thorns spell that a Druid has in WoW.
    Slipstream 2 years ago
    You make a very dashing member of the Alliance Chris. That tabard looks particularly fetching, time to switch sides...
    Percinho 2 years ago
    erm... Am I missing something or does this not actually say when it starts?
    Oridan 2 years ago
    Warcraft 4: Rock and roll racing
    seasidebaz 2 years ago
    Rock & Diabroll Racing
    Maleta 2 years ago
    I'd like a new Diablo game altogether. Something like the new Lineage or Lost Ark.
    Oridan 2 years ago
    Or Diablo 4: Deckard Strikes Back
    Oridan 2 years ago
    I'd like a Diablo 3 expansion with the necromancer in it, please.
    Oridan 2 years ago
    King's honor, friend.
    HeroJez 2 years ago
    Warcraft 4 please.
    frucusadat 2 years ago
    I quit my office employment and now I am getting paid 92 Dollars hourly. How? I work-over web! My old work waas making me hopeless, so I was to have a go at something other than what's expected. 2 years After...I can say My life is improved totally!Look at it what i do.....>>> MaxCash9.Tk
    Daeltaja 2 years ago
    What's with the Sombre excitement? You'd swear they were teasing a new game!
    ckyman2 2 years ago
    free to play Diablo 2 remastered I called it here first gentlemen :)
    Slipstream 2 years ago
    You guys did call a stage hack and I've rolled with that theory since. It'll be super cringey because it was brought forward a while back so we've been expecting it. xD
    Malek86 2 years ago
    More Diablo and I'll be happy.
    Bertie 2 years ago
    Can't wait for the cringey staged hack to introduce Sombra!
    FuzzyMetal 2 years ago
    If they really wanted to troll everyone after all this ARG stuff they'd get everyone revved up for Overwatch hero reveals and then announce a fourth Warcraft strategy title.New Diablo stuff would be nice if we're sticking to the realm of reality.
    Devilligan 2 years ago
    Sombra is definitely going to hack the stage. :(
    craigperry1 2 years ago
    Praying for some cool Hearthstone stuff, and hopefully not a massive wait... so tired of Shaman, Shaman, Warrior, Warrior, Shaman, Warrior.
    Slipstream 2 years ago
    They did say they were happy with the concept of another character outside of Sombra a while back.So I'm going to throw one out there an go with Sombra and Doomfist, since there's a fairly decent amount of lore relating to him/her too.
    Gazz 2 years ago
    Anything diablo related would be nice but not holding my breath :)
    Return-of-Jafar 2 years ago
    I hope they reveal 2 heroes at once. Not just Sombra, because they might as well announce it's a Friday given how much has already been revealed about Sombra.
    MrTomFTW 2 years ago
    Well if they don't reveal Sombra then Chris can cheer himself up by popping over to Disneyland. I believe it's just over the way from the convention centre.
    Gazz 2 years ago
    Erm html formatting issues?