Blizzard Entertainment has announced Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft, a free-to-play collectible card game set in the Warcraft universe. The studio unveiled the digital-only title during their PAX East panel earlier today.
Developed by “Team 5,” a small team composed of fifteen veteran developers within Blizzard, Hearthstone was conceived as a smaller title that would be true to the developer’s heritage while remaining “nontraditional within [their] walls.”
In Hearthstone, each player’s deck centers around a hero from Warcraft lore that represents one of the nine iconic character classes in the series. Individual decks are customized with minion, spell, and weapon cards that support particular strategies. The game will ship with over 300 cards at launch, but players will need to the unlock the vast majority of those cards either by purchasing (estimated price is $1 for 5 cards) or earning booster packs.
The game will ship with three modes: Play, Practice, and Forge. In Play mode, players are matched against other players online via Battle.net, earning medals and free card packs for playing. In Practice mode, players can test out deck ideas against AI opponents. Meanwhile, in Forge mode, players formulate a deck using randomly provided cards, choosing one card from a set of three cards over and over again until they’ve created a whole new deck to use against an online opponent that has done the same.
Hearthstone is coming to PCs and Macs sometime this year, with an iPad version soon after release. A beta, which players can sign-up for right here, will be available this summer.
Watch the debut trailer for Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft here: