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Blizzard Announces Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft Digital Card Game

Soulskill posted about a year and a half ago | from the like-magic-the-gathering-but-simpler dept.

Games 79

UgLyPuNk writes "Blizzard has revealed its 'something new' at PAX East 2013: Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft — a 'charming collectible strategy game set in the Warcraft universe.'" Blizzard says this game is a departure from their normal development process: it was made with a team of just 15, will release this year, and it's free-to-play. Hearthstone is built for Mac OS, Windows, and iPads. There's a deck builder, a match-finder, and AI for those who don't want to play against other people. While it's free to play, and players will earn new packs of cards by playing, there will also be an option to purchase new packs.

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yo dawg (5, Funny)

Kurast (1662819) | about a year and a half ago | (#43246609)

So I heard you like games, so I made a game within a game

Re:yo dawg (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43247255)

So I heard you like games, so I made a game within a game

This gets my vote as the stupidest, brainless, thoughtless, pointless and useless post of the day.

Re:yo dawg (1)

DigiShaman (671371) | about a year and a half ago | (#43249361)

So, I'm playing WoW online. My hunter is tired and cold. He needs to walk into a local bar. Oh look!, players sitting at a table. I will sit down and enjoy a game of Hearthstone with the rest of them while staying warm by the virtual fireplace, for five hours!!!. And I planned on playing WoW. Guess it didn't work out that way...

Re:yo dawg (3, Informative)

chispito (1870390) | about a year and a half ago | (#43250197)

So I heard you like games, so I made a game within a game

Yo. Other Dawg.

It isn't a game within a game. It's a standalone online CCG.

Re:yo dawg (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43250983)

If you wanna play a game in a game, many have already done that...
such as Roger Wilco, Duke Nukem and many others...

But this one isn't a game in a game...

Who cares? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43246653)

I'm serious. Wtf.

Competes with WoW's own TCG (4, Interesting)

idontgno (624372) | about a year and a half ago | (#43246687)

I wonder how Cryptozoic [cryptozoic.com] feels about Blizzard firing off a "digital trading card game" when they already have a "non-digital TCG" [cryptozoic.com] license? There's nothing quite so sucktacular as directly competing with your licensor.

Re:Competes with WoW's own TCG (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43247015)

I think the writing's been on the wall for quite awhile. WoW TCG used to be their sole focus and Bread and Butter. But the past year they've been diversifying, gathering non-Blizzard licenses, and trying to get another franchise off the ground in a very hard way. I wouldn't be surprised if the contract between Crypt and Blizzard comes to an end after the current one expires.

Furthermore, Blizzard has constantly been trying to step into the world of micro-transactions (Attempts at "map selling" in Starcraft at the beginning, the Auction House, etc) so this is just the next step. It's really funny that people complain about "freemium" and "microtransactions" as if they are totally new concepts, whereas anybody that has played TCG's have been subject to this model since the early 90's.

Re:Competes with WoW's own TCG (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43247075)

I wonder how Cryptozoic [cryptozoic.com] feels about Blizzard firing off a "digital trading card game" when they already have a "non-digital TCG" [cryptozoic.com] license? There's nothing quite so sucktacular as directly competing with your licensor.

Considering the two games are NOTHING alike and one is physical with the other being digital, Id say they don't care. My account was selected for the beta not to long ago, aside from the whole card thing they don't have much in common and play differently.

And competing with themselves? Isnt that as stupid as saying Toyota makes lexus cars and its Toyotas line of cars and saying they compete with themselves? Or Microsoft competing against themselves by still releasing windows 7 and 8? Or parker brothers competes with themselves by making a digital and physical version of monopoly.

You really should think about something before you say it.

Re:Competes with WoW's own TCG (1)

vokyvsd (979677) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251863)

I think the difference in all of these cases is that your example products are all being sold by the same overall company, while Cryptozoic is different company from Blizzard, so the competition, to the extent that there is any, can and will hurt them.

But I don't actually know anything about Cryptozoic. I'm just basing this entirely on a careful reading of what grandparent post said.

Re:Competes with WoW's own TCG (2)

MachineShedFred (621896) | about a year and a half ago | (#43249257)

Because this is so different than Wizards of the Coast having their own online M:TG game?

People that want to play with real cards, will.
People that don't, won't. This is an attempt to get some of those people in, too.

Re:Competes with WoW's own TCG (2)

asmkm22 (1902712) | about a year and a half ago | (#43249491)

Wizards of the Coast found that it didn't really have a negative impact at all when they went full steam with Magic: Online. Card sales stayed the same, and the online game is doing very well. Identical rules, cards, and tourny's, although the digital release dates are a few weeks behind the physical release dates.

TLDR: I don't think this will impact card sales any, especially since the games aren't even using the same rules.

The addiction continues (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43246711)

I'm waiting for the Warcraft-branded groceries myself. The soda is not a great diet on its own, I need food! From Pandaria!

Re:The addiction continues (2)

Looker_Device (2857489) | about a year and a half ago | (#43246953)

Warcraft: The Flamethrower.

Re:The addiction continues (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43247039)

The kids love it

Re:The addiction continues (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43247249)

i don't think it is legal to sell panda meat.

Re:The addiction continues (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43247445)

Koalas, though? Their meat is delicious.

Re:The addiction continues (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43250853)

I can't wait for Pandaria Express to offer Mu Shu Orc, and Pa La Dim Sum.

Real-Money Auction House? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43246713)

But will it have a RMAH where I can sell cards? Yes? I won't play it... No? I still won't play it.

Sorry ACTV, I will not play or purchase anything from you again after what you did to the Diablo franchise.

Re:Real-Money Auction House? (2)

leonardluen (211265) | about a year and a half ago | (#43247297)

everyone is angry when blizzard doesn't let people buy digital bits and a black market developes around buying and selling weapons and gold, because blizzard isn't catering to what they want.

and then people are equally angry when blizzard gives them what they want and provides an avenue for them to buy/sell their weapons and gold

Re:Real-Money Auction House? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43247653)

Actually, I thought the RMAH was a good idea, although it had some pretty interesting side-effects, especially for those people that think that a video game can babysit their kids. Kid sells $10,000 worth of digital bits, buys a bunch of crap (don't the parents say, wtf?).. then the parents get billed from the IRS for unclaimed income.

Blizzard destroyed the franchise through the crappy storyline, the crappy specializations / skills, DRM / server issues.

Re:Real-Money Auction House? (1)

subanark (937286) | about a year and a half ago | (#43249265)

[citation]?

Since in my mind, the money would be tax free until you cash out. From my understanding you have:
1. The D3 received account. This contains all profits from auctions and can be used to buy stuff on the D3 auction house or cash out on paypal (after fees).
2. The Battle.net Balance. You can deposit real money into this account, transfer money from the D3 received account, and spend it on various digital Blizzard stuff (excluding wow time) including the D3 AH. You can't cash out this account, and you have a limit of around 250 USD for each currency type. Basically its like Microsoft or Nintendo points, except that they keep track of the actual money you put in.

Now there is a limit to how much you can have in your account at once before you have to cash out. However, you can't sell any one item on the D3 Auction house for more than 250 USD. Unless these kids have their own paypal account, I really doubt they would be subject to the taxes.

Re:Real-Money Auction House? (2)

Opportunist (166417) | about a year and a half ago | (#43249357)

As soon as the company making the game get their share from selling and buying gold and items for real money, selling and buying gold and items for real money will become a necessity to win a game. Simply because now it is in the game maker's interest that you sell and buy money and items.

THAT is what people are pissed about with those "real money auction" crap. As long as some black market dealer is buying and selling gold, it may actually work in the interest of the player because the game company making the game has no interest that this black market dealer makes money. They will go out of their way to ensure that you do NOT need to buy and sell your gold. Once they get a cut, it flips around.

Re:Real-Money Auction House? (1)

sixsixtysix (1110135) | about a year and a half ago | (#43254923)

this. it is why they never cracked down on people trading gold for things that cost real life money (time cards, mounts, pets [before they started marketing the ones to be ah friendly]) because it all gets funneled directly to them anyways, but try and sell that same gold for straight up cash and all of a sudden it becomes a no-no.

PC game company releases CCG (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43246717)

I would really like to see an article someplace regarding the trend of releasing CCGs for these game properties. Sony for example had an entire studio devoted to CCGs about its games (Sony Denver closed in 2011 when Sony hit the skids, unfortunately -- so much for game development in Colorado), and when I was involved with Lego Universe they had a CCG in the works before the game even came out.

Just 15? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43246721)

It is interesting how the large game makers think that a team of 15 is a number small enough to be noteworthy when games like Minecraft, Amnesia and FTL are made by a single digit number of people.
Different perspective I guess.

Re:Just 15? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43246961)

I'm always fascinated with the Touhou games and their misleadingly named developer Team Shanghai Alice. (Why misleadingly, you ask? Because this "team" consists of exactly one person.)

Re:Just 15? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43252467)

I'm fascinated with how kind of dull these games are, and I feel if it wasn't for the anime style - they'd be pretty ignored.

LOL (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43246729)

But where'a da Loonix support? I heards dat Loonix was duh new premier gaming OS.

LOL freetards be getting the shaft again.

This news truly matters. (0)

Doug Otto (2821601) | about a year and a half ago | (#43246795)

Now I can go on with my day and be totally effective.

Re:This news truly matters. (1)

Joehonkie (665142) | about a year and a half ago | (#43247043)

It IS, in fact, news for nerds. You will notice it is posted in the "games" category, which you are welcome to ignore if it takes up too much of your important time.

Re:This news truly matters. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43247599)

But without reading stories he doesn't care about, how will he be able to show how superior his life is? You know, ignoring the fact that he looks to slashdot to make his life worth living.

Re:This news truly matters. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43247699)

I don't always read your slashdot posts, but when I do, I read them with a sense of righteous condescension.

Re:This news truly matters. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43248475)

Did you say "righteous condensation" ??

That got me wondering.....

Re:This news truly matters. (1)

Doug Otto (2821601) | about a year and a half ago | (#43248497)

Sarcasm. Embrace it.

Re:This news truly matters. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43249977)

My cock. Suck it.

Re:This news truly matters. (1)

Doug Otto (2821601) | about a year and a half ago | (#43250051)

Sorry sweetie. I don't swing that way.

Re:This news truly matters. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43251831)

Nerd fight!

Re:This news truly matters. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43247491)

That's cute coming from someone posting via a Facebook account. Perhaps le reddit would be more to your liking.

Re:This news truly matters. (1)

Doug Otto (2821601) | about a year and a half ago | (#43248859)

When Dice took over, they added an option to use FB credentials during the act of creating an account. Had I known the 30 seconds of typing I was saving would forever brand me with an azure f, I'd have skipped it. It saved me time, that's all.

You, on the other hand, won't even post the name behind your snippy comments so you're not worth 30 seconds of consideration. Seems like it's a wash.

Re:This news truly matters. (1)

DrGamez (1134281) | about a year and a half ago | (#43252481)

Your busy day that involves: facebook.

Sounds like a real busy day indeed!

So.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43246813)

Does this mean Blizzard has "jumped the shark"? I think it does...

Re:So.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43247093)

I think they did that with anthropomorphic pandas...

Re:So.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43247507)

But not before that with the anthropomorphic cows, dogs, birds, lizards, space goats, etc etc?

Re:So.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43248053)

Right. It was the pandas.

Not the anthropomorphic cows. Not the anthropomorphic wolves. Not the pink-haired squeaky midgets and their slightly taller beer-swilling scottish brethren. Not the armor-kini clad warrior waifs. Not the space goats. Not the Jersey Shore goblins. Not the anthropomorphic lizards, walruses, oxen, mermen, bears, fish-men, or walking corpses. Nope, those were all fine, the only problem is the pandas.

Incidentally, the Pandaria expansion is probably the most beautiful & enjoyable expansion to the game to date. You should try it sometime, unless you equate "grinding" with "fun" - in which case, good riddance.

Re:So.... (1)

0xdeadbeef (28836) | about a year and a half ago | (#43247911)

They've jumped the shark so many times they must be in orbit.

And that isn't to say they haven't actually jumped the shark, it's that, like reality TV and fast food, they keep figuring out ways of turning their games to shit and make more money doing it.

Re:So.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43248633)

I'm starting to think the phrase "jumping the shark" has jumped the shark.

Was blizzard hinting at a card game? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43246823)

Weird that they released a card game after Barcraft from the Starcraft 2 arcade has been one of the most popular games the last while. Barcraft was also one of the games they were showing on the large screen during the SC2 HOTS release party. Guess this was a hint?

Backwards compatible with Magic: The Gathering? (4, Funny)

Looker_Device (2857489) | about a year and a half ago | (#43246889)

Cause I still got a shitload of those cards to unload, man.

Re:Backwards compatible with Magic: The Gathering? (1)

Chris Mattern (191822) | about a year and a half ago | (#43247087)

Look. Nobody wants your Pearled Unicorns.

Re:Backwards compatible with Magic: The Gathering? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43247843)

All the deck needs is a Unicorn Lord.

Think of the legions of girls, Mark Rosewater, think of the legions of girls!

Re:Backwards compatible with Magic: The Gathering? (1)

Mabhatter (126906) | about a year and a half ago | (#43247925)

Drift on over to DeviantArt.... There you will find Princess Twilight Sparkle, Planeswalker. She"s an Alicorn, close enough...

Consider MPL:FIM Is owned by e same corporate masters as WotC M:tG we Ned to make this HAPPEN!

Re:Backwards compatible with Magic: The Gathering? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43249085)

Yes, MTG crossover with Equestria.

Most awesome idea evah!

Re:Backwards compatible with Magic: The Gathering? (1)

Zalbik (308903) | about a year and a half ago | (#43247257)

Backward compatibility?

Isn't that a little like asking your toaster to be backward compatible with your blender? They are totally different franchises.

Mmmmmm....toasted smoothie.....

Re:Backwards compatible with Magic: The Gathering? (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about a year and a half ago | (#43249421)

Maybe, but that blended waffles sure are kinda ... well, I may think otherwise once I'm old and lost all my teeth...

So... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43247079)

...They're catching up to Everquest?

That's cool, I guess.

Experiment in social gaming (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43247177)

It's an experiment in low cost social gaming. When you have games like FTL which succeed wildly with a tiny dev team and budget, and then a AAA game with a AAA license and a $200M budget by one of the top studios in the business 9SW:TOR) fails miserably, they're seeing the change and experimenting with developing other business lines. This isn't Blizzard's forte, but they're definitely seeing if they can develop it.

Yes, I know, thanks Captain Obvious.

Re:Experiment in social gaming (1)

subanark (937286) | about a year and a half ago | (#43249465)

You want a game to succeed with a small dev team? The roguelike random levels element is IN. Just combine it with existing game models and profit:
Contra + roguelike = profit
Tetris + roguelike = profit
Super Mario Bros + roguelike = profit
Your favorite FPS + roguelike = profit
DDR + roguelike = wtf (maybe profit)

PS I did see a draft gameplay for Blizzards TCG which is similar to the way roguelikes work.

A departure of their usual style (0)

TheSkepticalOptimist (898384) | about a year and a half ago | (#43247223)

Of taking forever to develop a game and then ruining it with always-on DRM?

Yes, that is a dramatic departure from the usual.

I guess you can't blame a company for learning from their mistakes and trying something new. Personally I think the game is a cop-out though.

Genius (1)

Synerg1y (2169962) | about a year and a half ago | (#43247311)

Step one: Make digital card game.
Step two: Print cards and sell them.
Step three: Profit more from WOW.

Re:Genius (1)

MachineShedFred (621896) | about a year and a half ago | (#43249321)

They got it backwards then. They've had a printed card game for years.

perfect product (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43247315)

You know what would make this idiotic card game for man-children even better? Eliminating the physical cards!

I think I'll... (1)

CodeHxr (2471822) | about a year and a half ago | (#43247419)

... pass.

Re:I think I'll... (1)

Mike Frett (2811077) | about a year and a half ago | (#43250675)

Perhaps this was the Linux compatible game they were making for 2013? (I'm a Linux user OK) =p

F2P (3, Insightful)

tech.kyle (2800087) | about a year and a half ago | (#43247461)

I was worried until I saw that it would be free-to-play. Now I'm really worried. In my experiences, the F2P model never improved the experience of those who would have normally paid for it. I do understand that the F2P model is more profitable, but, in my opinion, it ruins the game. More of a risk.

Recently, I've tried Simraceway and I don't see how spending hundreds of dollars on cars is better than ~$20 for Gran Turismo. A more well known example, FarmVille eventually only benefited kids with their parents credit cards and no concept of the value of a dollar.

Re:F2P (0)

MasseKid (1294554) | about a year and a half ago | (#43248179)

Not all free to play games are "rape you for useless crap". Games such as World of Tanks have a very reasonable balance between being free and having a premium side. It's an MMO, so there's constant development work (new maps, new tank lines, etc) that you don't have to buy expansions to get (an improvement over most MMOs where you had to buy the expansions or you fall our of date and can no longer really play with your friends. You aren't required to buy anything, many people play w/ buying gold or a premium account.


What can gold buy you? Premium account (increase XP and credits per battle so faster unlocking of tanks), more tank slots, and some premium tanks. None of which are really required. The premium tanks while nice, are not useful in the "end game" of clan wars. So you don't "need gold to compete".


It's a very nice model that is well removed from the typical "farmville" crap.

Re:F2P (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about a year and a half ago | (#43249459)

IIRC there is also "gold ammo", and unless that changed considerably it meant that you got actual shells instead of the usual air gun pellets that you could get for creds.

Re:F2P (1)

MasseKid (1294554) | about a year and a half ago | (#43249509)

"Gold ammo" can be bought with credits or gold. It is something the changed in a patch a while back. Although if you feel that what you buy with creds is "air gun pellets" you aren't playing the game right. Learning to shoot tanks in their weak parts is part of the game.

Fantastic! (3, Insightful)

The Living Fractal (162153) | about a year and a half ago | (#43247581)

I'll never play this, but I'm sure some people will enjoy it very much. I continue to wait for Titan.

Re:Fantastic! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43251977)

Judging by how this post is modded, I think a lot of folks have a defective sarcasm detector...

Nice one (1)

mmoopinion (2873467) | about a year and a half ago | (#43248849)

Could actually be interesting. No Blizzard release should be take lightly. Maybe this will contribute to the Blizzard lore in a meaningful way, which would always be welcome.

So the usual F2P/P2W ploy? (4, Insightful)

Opportunist (166417) | about a year and a half ago | (#43249483)

Lemme guess: You get a pack of "starter pack" cards for free that makes you pretty much a target dummy for anyone who actually shelled out some dough and bought enough "booster packs" to actually create a deck that can win?

I.e. how it works in traditional TCGs, just that they did away with the costly process of printing cards?

Re:So the usual F2P/P2W ploy? (1)

Dragonslicer (991472) | about a year and a half ago | (#43250475)

In theory, the matchmaker should be able to put you against opponents who have spent a similar amount of money as you, so that people who play strictly for free will only go up against people who also haven't bought any new cards.

The question is whether or not practice will match theory.

Re:So the usual F2P/P2W ploy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43251101)

Here is the practice.

http://penny-arcade.com/comic/2002/07/26

Re:So the usual F2P/P2W ploy? (1)

NotBorg (829820) | about a year and a half ago | (#43257527)

Given my experience with their other games, I have no faith in their ability to matchmake.

Re:So the usual F2P/P2W ploy? (1)

gorfin (80548) | about a year and a half ago | (#43252523)

You can also earn booster packs through normal game play without paying.

Re:So the usual F2P/P2W ploy? (1)

Triv (181010) | about a year and a half ago | (#43254349)

nope.

The game matches you with people with decks of similar strength and you earn boosters by winning. Buying the boosters ($1 per pack of 5 with one guaranteed rare or better as of right now) just gets you there faster.

Also the other staple of physical ccgs, buying boosters filled with crap you don't need for a shot at a rare you can use, is updated with a crafting system - cards you don't need can be broken down into dust to be crafted into specific rares etc you actually want.

lol (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43250963)

Other than the few nubs that still play this game who cares.

It's not a TCG (1)

GrBear (63712) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251113)

It's not a trading card game (TCG), it's a collectors card game (CCG). You're not allowed to trade your cards with other players.

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