Posts Tagged ‘Hearthstone’

The RPG Scrollbars: Nine Years In Karazhan

Can a tower be a star? If you’ve been paying any attention to Blizzard’s wacky worlds recently, you’ll have spotted that it’s giving it a pretty good shot. Karazhan, home of Medivh, the Last Guardian of Tirisfal, whose corruption by the Burning Legion led to the orc invasions of Azeroth. A central location in the movie, as well as the mythos. A whole Hearthstone expansion dedicated to its wacky inhabitants.

This week, a new World of Warcraft patch called, yes, Return To Karazhan. But what is this place, for those who weren’t around the first time? What makes it so important?

Read the rest of this entry »

Logging Off: Blizzard Dropping The Name

After twenty years, Blizzard plan to step away from the name for their online platform and services. The Diablords and Warcrafteers today announced that they’ll be “transitioning away” from the name, which they’ve been using since the first Diablo way back in 1996. No, Blizzard now want to name elements boring things like Blizzard Streaming and Blizzard Voice. Ah, the end of an era. Another icon falls.

Look, let’s be honest: names which are also domain names had become daggy by ooh we’ll generously say 1999. But don’t you see, Blizzard? A ’90s revival is going on – for the first time in yonks, the name currently sounds cool.

Read the rest of this entry »

Blizzard: You Can Now Buy Battletag Name Changes

There’s this idea that every in-game name chosen in youthful exuberance is an embarrassment you’ll eventually want to be rid of. I actually still like and use the one I picked back then, although I occasionally switch it up nowadays because “Notorious P.I.P.” is too good a pun to pass up. BUT if you picked a horror of a name as your Battletag, Blizzard are now offering paid-for name changes.

Read the rest of this entry »

He Was The Lore: Blizzard’s Chris Metzen Retires

Blizzard lorelord Chris Metzen (‘senior vice president of story and franchise development’, if you want to be technical) has handed in his badge and his loregiver (his keyboard, obvs) and taken The Long Walk into The Cursed Earth (idk, Reddit?). After nearly 23 years of laying down the lore and voicing characters from Thrall to the good ol’ Terran Battlecruiser, Metzen last night announced his retirement. He’s off to spend time with his family, see.

Read the rest of this entry »

Hearthstone’s Removing A Bunch Of Cards From Arena

Designing a game is a fine balancing act, and Blizzard is working to make sure that Hearthstone [official site] is perfectly even and fine-tuned on all counts. There have been some concerns that certain classes are significantly overpowered in the game’s Arena mode. Associate game designer Dean Ayala says:

“Variety among all game modes is important to us, but an equally important goal is to have a wide range of experiences within each game mode . . . When you first enter Arena and are offered the choice of three different classes, our goal is that you can look at those choices and choose any class without feeling disadvantaged because of their difference in power level.”

It certainly makes things less exciting when you only have two or three viable classes to choose from if you want to have any sway in the competition. So how do we fix it?

Read the rest of this entry »

Impressions: The Elder Scrolls – Legends

If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, the team behind The Elder Scrolls: Legends [official site] must be great fans of Hearthstone. Much of this new collectible card game will be instantly familiar to those who’ve played Blizzard’s Warcraft-based equivalent. There’s a gradually increasing pool of magic points with which to play cards. The same attack value and health stats, with most creatures being unable to strike on the turn they’re summoned. A slew of common special abilities that break the base rules, such as allowing for an attack immediately after being played, or having a one-hit shield to protect them from damage. Sure, everything has a different name, like “Guard” instead of “Taunt”, but the initial sense of deja vu is overwhelming. Thankfully, that fades.

Read the rest of this entry »

Hearthstone’s Next Adventure: One Night In Karazhan

“One night in Karazhan makes a hard man humble!” Murray Head almost sang in 1982. “Not much between despair and ecstasy.” Though it’d be another dozen years before Warcraft first came out, and two decades more before Hearthstone [official site], clearly he knew. “One night in Karazhan and the tough guys tumble / Can’t be too careful with your company / I can feel Medivh walking next to me,” he almost sang. And he was almost right: Blizzard have announced that the next Hearthstone Adventure add-on is ‘One Night in Karazhan‘, venturing to Medivh’s magical tower.

Read the rest of this entry »