Blizzard has announced the Year of the Mammoth! Along with that, it has added a new Hall of Fame Set which retires Standard cards into Wild.
Blizzard doesn't want people dusting these so they're giving their dust value to everyone for free, including golden versions.
"Yes, that means if you have at least one Golden Ragnaros, you'll get 3200 dust!"
Brode has confirmed that if you have a normal Ragnaros and a Golden Ragnaros, you will only get dust for the golden one.
No Adventures this year, there will be three ~130 card sets.
The developers want to incorporate parts of adventures into each set. Each expansion will include optional single-player missions.
This concept will start with 2017's second expansion.
When asked if expansions will contain as much PvE content as previous adventures did, Brode said: "It's possible."
The Heroic Tavern Brawl will return after the next expansion and will be Wild.
Blizzard plans on adding in-client support for Fireside Gatherings.
There will be daily log in rewards (dust, gold, packs, surprises) leading up to the launch of the new Year of the Mammoth.
Maiev Shadowsong is coming! Just win ten games of Hearthstone after the next set.
These changes do mean Hall of Fame cards will no longer show up in Classic packs.
Brode says it's "definitely possible" that they replace these card's slots with interesting but weaker cards.
"As an example, I think Shatter might make a great Classic card someday."
A Year of Mammoth Proportions!
We’ve got a lot of great things on the horizon for Hearthstone in 2017, including new content launches, innovative ways to get together and play with friends, improvements to keep Hearthstone fresh and exciting, and more! Read on to get the full scoop on what’s happening this year.
Year of the Mammoth Roadmap
2017 marks the end of the Year of the Kraken and the beginning of a new Hearthstone Year: The Year of the Mammoth. Each new Hearthstone Year brings a fresh start in the form of a new Standard format. Once the Year of the Mammoth officially begins with the first major expansion of 2017, Blackrock Mountain, The Grand Tournament, and League of Explorers cards will become exclusive to Wild.
Set Rotation Is Coming
Last year, we introduced a New Way to Play, which introduced the Standard and Wild game formats to Hearthstone.
In order to keep Hearthstone exciting and accessible as more cards are added, Standard allows players to use the most recently released cards, as well as a core of Basic and Classic cards. Our overall intention with Standard is to keep the game feeling fresh for all of our players, and to allow newer players to jump into Hearthstone quickly, without collecting lots of cards to build a competitive deck. Standard also gives our developers more freedom when designing new cards for the future.
However, over the course of the Year of the Kraken, certain cards in the Classic set have contradicted these goals. When cards show up too frequently in decks and are considered auto-includes, deck-building becomes more limited. Deck variety stagnates, potentially interesting build-around cards fall by the wayside, and the gameplay experience begins to feel less dynamic. Most cards should feel like situational additions to a deck, depending on the deck archetype the player is trying to build.
To help meet our goals, certain cards from the Classic set will become exclusive to the Wild format. These cards will be added to the new Hall of Fame set, which will also include cards that are currently in the Reward set.
Developer’s Note: The first three of the six Classic cards that will be added to the Hall of Fame set are powerful Neutral cards that show up in many decks and reduce the chance of new cards having an impact. This is truer for cards in the 5+ mana cost range because players tend to use fewer of these cards in a deck.
We wanted to allow players to disenchant Classic cards that are being added to the Hall of Fame set for full dust refunds, but then felt that incentivizing players to dust their cool Wild cards was counter to our goal of making Wild awesome.
So instead, we're just going to give you the dust, and you can keep the cards!
Up to the maximum number of cards you could put in a deck, we will give you the full dust value of any cards you have that are being added to the Hall of Fame set. (Yes, that means if you have at least one Golden Ragnaros, you'll get 3200 dust!) The dust will be automatically awarded upon log-in once the Year of the Mammoth begins.
Adventuring in Expansions
Looking back, we learned a lot in 2016 with the introduction of the Year of the Kraken. One of the things we’d like to put additional focus on for the Year of the Mammoth is having additional deck-building options and deck variety in Hearthstone. To help give players additional tools and options to accomplish this, we are changing up the way we handle our release cycle. Previously, a Hearthstone Year alternated between Expansions and Adventures.
For the Year of the Mammoth, our release cycle will include a ~130 card expansion at the start of the year, a ~130 card expansion in the middle of the year, and another ~130 card expansion at the end of the year.
Why the change of release cycle?
At their core, Adventures paint colorful and thematic stories about the Hearthstone universe. Imagine being able to learn about the history and lore behind each of our sets inside the game in a similar way! Defining who the Jade Lotus are through a series of battles between the Mean Streets of Gadgetzan families would have been a great way to supplement the overall Gadgetzan story arc. That concept is something we would like to do more of in future sets: Take the storytelling and cool missions of Adventures, and combine them with the card pools of expansions.
Cards will be acquired via packs like other expansions in the past; additionally, each release will include optional single-player missions that will help develop the expansions’ thematic narratives and offer fun challenges.
We’d like to continue being flexible and refine the way we roll out content so it’s more enjoyable for all of our players. The second expansion of 2017 will be our first step into this new design, and we plan on building on this concept over time. Additional details about our free single player content will come at a later time.
Where the Wild Cards Are
With the cards from Blackrock Mountain, The Grand Tournament, and League of Explorers becoming exclusive to Wild, the Wild format is going to be more exciting than ever before! For our players that enjoy playing in Wild, we’ll be supporting it in more ways in 2017.
Sometime after the release of our next expansion, we plan to run a Heroic Tavern Brawl utilizing the Wild format. With so many cards at your disposal, our most passionate and hardcore Hearthstone players and deck-builders will be put to the test.
We will also be collaborating with third-party tournament organizers to promote additional Hearthstone tournaments using the Wild format. Whether players are dueling in competitive Standard or Wild, we want our community to be excited about all of the various ways to play Hearthstone, and we hope additional official support for both formats will help to accomplish this.
We’re super excited about the ever-growing Wild ecosystem, and we’re looking for new and interesting ways to continue supporting it in the future.
Gather ‘Round for Fireside Gatherings
If you’re not familiar with Fireside Gatherings, they’re a great way to get out and meet people just as passionate about Hearthstone as you are! Fireside Gatherings mean a lot to us, and we’re planning on beefing up this program and adding additional in-client features to support Fireside Gatherings during the Year of the Mammoth. Keep an eye out for more information about Fireside Gatherings closer to the release of our first expansion this year—it’s never too late to become an Innkeeper!
Celebrate the Year of the Mammoth Together!
That’s not all for the Year of the Mammoth! Before the release of our next expansion, we’ve got a flurry of activity planned to support its launch: Daily login rewards will be available for a limited time— offering dust, gold, and expansion packs—as well as a few other surprises in the weeks before launch to blaze a trail for everything our next expansion has to offer.
Awardin’ a Warden
Login rewards aren’t the only things we’re offering to get players excited for the Year of the Mammoth: A new Hearthstone Hero approaches the Tavern!
The new Rogue Hero, Maiev Shadowsong, has emerged from the shadows, eager to become a part of your Hearthstone collection after 10,000 years of tolerating bad “You are not prepared” jokes from Illidan. Legion beware: Adding this vengeful Night Elf to your collection will be easier than teaching an old felhound new tricks. Just win 10 games of Hearthstone in Standard Ranked or Casual mode after the next expansion officially launches to acquire her.
Year of the Mammoth Wrap-up
There’s a lot on the horizon for Hearthstone in 2017; we hope you’ve enjoyed this look into the year ahead and we’ll see you at the Inn!