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Filed under: Hearthstone Insider

The latest season of Hearthstone ranked play ending soon

The latest season of ranked play in Hearthstone is coming to a close in just a few short days on August 31. This month's participation reward is the Chill of Icecrown card back seen above. You only need to hit rank 20 before the end of the month to earn the skin, which isn't a particularly difficult task. Losses prior to rank 20 don't cause you to lose ranking, so as long as you play enough to work your way up to that point, you have it in the bag.

Filed under: Hearthstone Insider

Uther has too many justice

We recently stumbled across this song by Youtuber haigh152 -- a Hearthstone song made entirely of Uther's voice clips and other game sounds. The comedic approach to Uther's lyricism reminds me of classic Mr. Voletron mixes and that's a very good thing -- they're catchy, easily lovable, and often hilarious, a fine recipe for an earworm. Part of me wishes the song was longer, but with Uther's limited vocabulary, it might lose its charm if it was. I hope to see more of these from haigh152 in the future.

Filed under: Hearthstone Insider

Warlords Collector's Edition Hearthstone card back revealed

Among the oodles of goodies included in the Warlords of Draenor Collector's Edition is a new Hearthstone card back. The artwork has been revealed, which can be seen above or over on the @PlayHearthstone Twitter account. The art has an Iron Horde theme, exemplified in random spikes and furnaces. The Warcraft Twitter account confirms that this card back is also included in the Digital Deluxe version of the expansion.

Filed under: News items, Hearthstone Insider, Warlords of Draenor

Hearthstone: Arachnid Quarter guide


Curse of Naxxramas' initial wing launched on Tuesday, much to the delight of eager fans. The Arachnid Quarter features exactly what Warcraft veterans should expect, that being a lot of spiders. Anub'Rekhan, Grand Widow Faerlina and Maexxna serve as the first trials thrown at adventurers looking to fight their way to the nefarious lich Kel'thuzad. Today, we'll go over a bit about what these baddies do, and how best to crush them.

Anub'Rekhan

The Traitor King boasts a couple of unique mechanics that are worth making note of. His hero power Skitter allows him to summon a 3/1 Nerubian for two mana. On heroic mode, it's a 4/4 Nerubian for two, which is pretty brutal. Anub'Rekhan also has access to a unique card called Anub'ar Swarm, which can really just ruin your day if you don't expect it. It costs a whopping seven mana, but does three damage to all of your minions and heals Anub'Rekhan for three health. Definitely prepare yourself for that, come turn seven. Beyond that, this fight's not too difficult. Anub'Rekhan has access to the rogue specific Curse of Naxxramas card Anub'ar Ambusher, and while 5/5's nothing to scoff at, destroying it will force another random minion on the board back into his hand, assuming there's anything he has anything else in play. It doesn't permanently deal with the threat, but it does buy you time to develop your board in response. Also of note, expect a strange blend of warlock and mage spells, specifically Shadow Bolt, Mortal Coil and Frostbolt.

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Filed under: Hearthstone Insider

Hearthstone: Curse of Naxxramas livestream

Check out WoW Insider's live stream for the new Hearthstone expansion pack: Curse of Naxxramas! Our own Robert Wing will give you the scoop on all the new cards and how they play. If you're interested in Hearthstone, here's your chance to get a glimpse of all the new features in action. Happy card slinging!

Filed under: Hearthstone Insider

Latest Curse of Naxxramas cards revealed, and more coming! [Updated]

With Curse of Naxxramas, Hearthstone's first expansion, slated to be released tomorrow, we're seeing a lot of last-minute previews of the soon-to-be-live cards. We know Naxxramas will feature 30 brand new cards and though we haven't seen them all yet, it seems Blizzard plans to reveal each of them before the expansion goes live.

So far, we've seen:
  • Mad Scientist, a minion with a deathrattle effect that puts pulls a secret from your deck.
  • Stoneskin Gargoyle, a minion that returns to full health at the start of every turn.
  • Stalagg, a legendary 7/5 minion with a deathrattle effect that summons Thaddius if Feugen has died in the same game.
  • Sludge Belcher, a 3/5 minion with taunt who summons a 1/2 minion with taunt on death.
  • Maexxna, a legendary 2/8 beast that destroys any minion it damages.
  • Zombie Chow, a 1-mana 2/3 minion that restores health to the enemy hero when it dies.
  • Deathlord, a 2/8 minion with taunt and a deathrattle that lets your opponent put a minion from their deck onto the battlefield.
  • Echoing Ooze, a minion that summons an exact copy of itself at the end of the turn.
  • Feugen, a legendary 4/7 minion with a deathrattle effect that summons Thaddius if Stalagg has died in the same game.
  • Spectral Knight, a 4/6 minion that can't be targeted by spells or hero powers.
Added since earlier this afternoon:
  • Haunted Creeper, a 1/2 beast that summons two 1/1 spiders on death.
  • Kel'Thuzad, a legendary 6/8 who, at the end of the turn, summons all friendly minions that were killed during the turn.
  • Nerub'ar Weblord, a 1/4 that causes all minions with battlecry to cost 2 more mana.
  • Unstable Ghoul, a 1/3 minion with taunt that deals one damage to all minions on death.
  • Wailing Soul, a 3/5 minion that silences your other minions when summoned.
  • Thaddius, a legendary 11/11 minion who's summoned when both Feugen and Stalagg have died in the same game.
We expect more cards to be revealed throughout the day, so stay tuned to Hearthstone's Facebook page for the latest! Update: With the latest additions, all 30 new cards from the set have been revealed.

Filed under: Hearthstone Insider

Loatheb revealed for Hearthstone's Curse of Naxxramas

Another new card from Hearthstone's Curse of Naxxramas set was revealed this afternoon: Loatheb. Loatheb is a legendary with one heck of a Battlecry. On the turn after Loatheb has been played, enemy spells cost 5 more mana. Any spell-heavy deck will be crippled for at least one turn, including the ever-infuriating Miracle Rogue.

Loatheb's 5/5 stat spread falls right into the standard range for a 5 mana minion. However, combined with its Battlecry, many players are already shouting overpowered. They may not be entirely wrong; 5 mana for a minion that can briefly cripple an entire deck and is quite beefy through raw stats alone is a huge threat. Loatheb may go down the same road Sylvanas did. Sylvanas was also once a 5/5 for 5 mana, but her cost was later changed to 6 mana to better reflect the actual threat she posed.

Filed under: Hearthstone Insider

Curse of Naxxramas release date announced


Brace yourselves, Curse of Naxxramas is coming. Blizzard just announced that Hearthstone's first adventure pack will be available to the public on July 22nd. Curse of Naxxramas' first wing, the Arachnid Quarter, will be available for free to everyone who logs in during the release event. After the event ends, the Arachnid Quarter will join the other wings in costing 700 gold, or $6.99. Bundle options are also available for savvy consumers.

The adventure pack boasts 30 brand new cards, nine of which are class specific. Players will be given the chance to traverse the depths of Naxxramas, doing battle with familiar bosses from the iconic Warcraft raid. Curse of Naxxramas features both normal and heroic modes, and besting all of the bosses on the heroic setting awards players with a unique card back.

Filed under: Hearthstone Insider

Previewing Curse of Naxxramas' neutral minions


Sometime this month, Blizzard is expected to release Hearthstone's first adventure pack Curse of Naxxramas. The pack will come with single player adventures, along with 30 new cards that should shake up the metagame and breathe some fresh air into the ladder scene. Pricing details were announced yesterday, and now seems an apt time to begin looking over the cards we'll be seeing in Naxxramas. Thus far, five neutral cards have officially been announced.


Dancing Swords

Dancing Swords is an intriguing minion at three mana. The magical blades boast a highly coveted 4/4 body, able to ignore specific priest removal while still having a thick enough hide to endure most popular area of effect spells. In exchange for the amazing statline, Dancing Swords awards opponents a card upon expiring. In a perfect world, Dancing Swords is used to quickly mow down a foe before the deathrattle ever becomes an issue. It seems like we won't be seeing this minion in anything other than fast paced aggression setups.

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Filed under: Hearthstone Insider

Hearthstone: Curse of Naxxramas pricing details

New card reveals aside, we've heard very little about Hearthstone's Curse of Naxxramas since its initial announcement. The two major questions have been when? and how much? Other than sometime in July, we still don't know when, but Blizzard announced today that each wing of Naxxramas -- five in total -- will cost 700 gold or $6.99 USD each. Players who participate in the month-long Naxxramas release event will receive the first wing for free. Bundle packages are also available:
  • All five wings: $24.99
  • Already own first wing (purchase remaining four): $19.99
  • Already own first two wings (purchase remaining three): $14.99
  • Already own first three wings (purchase remaining two): $9.99
The five-wing package will save you roughly $5. Do note that even if you purchase all five wings immediately, Naxxramas will only open one wing at a time, one per week until all are unlocked. Once you've unlocked and defeated all wings of Naxxramas, you'll be able to tackle them on a more difficult Heroic Mode, awarding a unique card back upon completion.

The full details of this can be found on Battle.net along with European pricing structures.

Filed under: Hearthstone Insider

Hearthstone tournament now open to all

Yesterday we reported about the oddity of a Hearthstone tournament that didn't allow women to compete. The reason? The International e-Sports Federation wanted gaming to be recognized as a "true sport," and was following the professional sports model of gender division. With fewer women competitors than men, this led to tournaments with a large selection of gaming events for men, but few for women -- in the case of this tournament, Hearthstone, Dota 2, and Ultra Street Fighter IV were all men-only events.

While e-Sports are often gender-divided (competitive StarCraft is notable in this regard), the idea of a men-only Hearthstone tournament was apparently the straw that broke the camel's back. Among many others, Blizzard spoke out against IeSF policy, telling VentureBeat, "One of our goals with e-sports is to ensure that there's a vibrant and also inclusive community around our games. We do not allow the use of our games in tournaments that do not support this, and are working with our partners to ensure they share the same goal."

The end result is that the IeSF has reversed the policy, and offers events open to all genders as well as women-only events to encourage the participation of women in the male-dominated field of pro gaming. It's a setup that's similar to the competitive chess scene, which has both a World Chess Championship in which anyone can compete and a Women's World Chess Championship. Now, at the 6th e-Sports World Championship BAKU 2014, men and women will be able to compete together in StarCraft 2 and Hearthstone tournaments, while there's also a women's only StarCraft 2 tournament. Time to get your game on!

Filed under: News items, Hearthstone Insider

Hearthstone season four card back unveiled

Hearthstone's fourth official season kicked off yesterday, and with it came the promise of another new card back for those able to reach rank 20. The Dread Necropolis is an obvious nod to the coming Curse of Naxxramas adventure pack, which could be out as early as this month. While the task might seem like a tall order if you're new, just remember, you're not penalized for losing prior to rank 20, making the journey far less painful than it could be.

Brave adventurers might recall Naxxramas as the lich Kel'thuzad's floating abode in Wrath of the Lich King. The card back boasts an appropriate motif, complete with bones and the raid's signature purple and green color scheme.

Filed under: Hearthstone Insider

Curse of Naxxramas coming to Hearthstone in July

Though we've known Hearthstone's Curse of Naxxramas expansion was coming out some time this summer, we haven't yet had a date to pin our card-playing hopes on. But now CM Aratil has announced on the Hearthstone forums that the expansion is headed our way this July. We still don't have a pricetag for the expansion, but Aratil says they'll be posting further details on July 1st, which is just around the corner.

Curse of Naxxramas will take gamers to -- surprise! -- Kel'Thuzad's citadel Naxxramas, where they'll fight new bosses and have the chance to earn 30 new cards. If you want to see just what's in store, the Hearthstone team has released a number of card previews, all of which are collected here.

Filed under: Hearthstone Insider

Five more must craft neutral Hearthstone cards

It turns out that people get oddly passionate about card lists, which is honestly a pretty great sign for Hearthstone. The first list we dropped two weeks ago was met with agreement, and also a lot of 'where is this card?!', despite warnings that there would be more to come. There was also some disagreement with the Wild Pyromancer choice, but I'm hoping that Amaz and his skilled use of the fiery minion at Dreamhack Summer has opened some eyes. It's incredibly powerful with the right complements.

This week we'll take a look at another five sub-epic cards no one should be without. The only ranking to the list is mana cost, so we're not saying that one's more important than another. That decision is up to you and what decks you want to play.

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Filed under: Hearthstone Insider

Fantastic come-from-behind Hearthstone win

Trump is probably one of the best-known Hearthstone players active today, and as such many of you are probably well-acquainted with his Twitch stream. If you haven't been watching recently, you may have missed the nail-biting finish of the match embedded above, in which Trump comes from behind what seemed like a guaranteed win for his opponent to claim victory by the skin of his teeth.

What makes this so fun to watch, in my opinion, is that Trump's victory actually depended upon his opponent making a number of mistakes--which he did. However, in addition to this, Trump had to perfectly capitalize on those errors, which he also did. While you can reasonably expect people to choose certain moves and styles over others, you can never truly predict what any player will do in a given match. In many cases, such as the one above, the ability to seize an opportunity is what marks the difference between victory and defeat. Congratulations to Trump for his skill in doing just that. Take note, avid Hearthstone players, there's a lot to be learned from the above video--in both Trump's actions and his opponent's.

Filed under: Hearthstone Insider

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