For the last year, the same nine, grizzled heroes have duked it out in the tavern, naipe a naipe, in Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft, Blizzard’s digital collectible card game. Now for the first time those ranks will grow as Blizzard announced the introduction of new heroes.
Before you get too excited about such a radical change to the game’s balance, note that the new heroes are only cosmetic changes, as the fit into the existing hero archetypes. The new heroes will instead add new portraits, hero ability animations, voiceover, and card backs.
The new heroes can be purchased in the in-game shop for $10. Notably, this is the first addition to the game that can only be purchased with real world currency. All previous packs, expansions, and adventures have been available for both real money and in-game gold. Blizzard told Polygon that it has “no plans for an in-game gold option at this time” for the new heroes. Blizzard is careful to point out that these new heroes don’t come with any new cards, abilities, or anything that would impact gameplay. As a purely cosmetic addition to the game, this makes sense. All of the mechanically-relevant content is still available for free to anyone that wants to dedicate the time. This allows dedicated fans to invest a little more in a customized experience while avoiding pay-to-win pitfalls.
The first new hero will be Magni Bronzebeard, king of the ancestral dwarven capital of Ironforge. Magni replaces the orc berserker Garrosh Hellscream in the aggressive Warrior class. Magni is currently listed in the store as “Coming Soon,” with no specific release date yet. Additional heroes for the other eight classes will presumably follow in the coming months. What characters from the extensive lore of Warcraft would you like to see added to the game?