Beware, Hearthstone bot users. Well, beware-ish. Blizzard have followed up their forum post from August about botting being a violation of the Hearthstone terms of service and have banned several thousand Hearthstone accounts until 2015.
"As we’ve stated, fair play is at the core of the Hearthstone experience, and cheating and botting will not be tolerated," said Blizzard via an official blog post by community manager, Christina 'Zeriyah' Sims. At the heart of the issue are third party programs which automate gameplay and let players earn gold, unlock card backs and so on.
The thing is, 2015 is two months away and Blizzard aren't removing any earnings this time. The action is more of a slap on the wrist and an inconvenience to get cheaters to stop cheating and go back to playing regularly. In the ideal scenario for Blizzard they wouldn't lose any potential paying customers, just bot programs.
As you might have guessed the response to Blizzard's warning shot hasn't been universally positive. There are pages of forum comments from disappointed players arguing that the punishments for botting were too lenient this time given that nothing earned through the use of bots is being removed from accounts. After all, that official post back in August functioned as the warning shot and made it clear that cheating would not be tolerated.