The Year of the Mammoth dawns in Hearthstone and huge changes are coming

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Blizzard has revealed its grand master plan for Hearthstone in 2017. The Year of the Mammoth is coming and so are a number of unexpected changes.

In 2016 Blizzard introduced Standard and Wild modes for Hearthstone. Standard would allow players to only use cards from expansions released that year as well as Classic cards. Wild would include all cards.

This was meant to be a way to keep the game fresh and inspire creative deck building.

“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,” said Blizzard

In light of this six cards from the Classic set will be relegated to the Wild format and form part of a new Hall of Fame set. If you’re a hardcore Hearthstone player you’re not going to like who they’ve selected.

  • Azure Drake
  • Sylvanas Windrunner
  • Ragnaros the Firelord
  • Power Overwhelming
  • Ice Lance
  • Conceal

Those are some huge removals especially in the case of Azure Drake and Conceal. Sylvanas and Ragnaros have also been Legendaries that are auto-includes in many decks owning to the sheer strength they represent.

Blizzard has said that rather than letting players disenchant these cards for dust they will give each player the full dust value of any cards they have that form part of the Hall of Fame set up to the maximum amount of cards you could put in a deck.

Players will get this dust upon logging in to the game when the Year of the Mammoth.

Cards, cards, cards

While we are going to miss the cards being removed we’re positively salivating at the amount of cards Blizzard plans to release this year.

“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,” said the developer.

That totals around 390 new cards this year. Rumours suggest the first of these expansions is Lost Secrets of Un’Goro.

The three expansion plan Blizzard has for 2017.

Adventures aren’t gone mind you, Bliz says that they will use Adventures to tell stories about the expansions. These approximately 390 cards will be acquired by buying packs but there will also be single player missions that will help players explore the lore of these expansions.

We’re gonna be rich!

Blizzard has also revealed that in the build up to the Year of the Mammoth players will be able to claim daily login reward of dust, gold and expansion packs. The developer says that there will be a few surprises along the way as well.

Maiev Shadowsong

There will also be a new hero portrait up for grabs during the launch of the new year. Maiev Shadowsong is a Rogue hero that you will be able to acquire by winning 10 games in Standard Ranked or Casual play.

The developer also plans to support the Wild format better than it has been. There will be a Heroic Tavern Brawl which will use the Wild format and Blizzard is in talks with third party tournament organisers to create competitions that use the format.

Blizzard has a lot more in store for 2017 but has not revealed its plans just yet. We’re interested to see whether the removal of big cards like Sylvanas and Rag inspires more folks to play the Wild format. That – we believe – will be predicated on what the new expansions bring to the table.

Just please Blizzard, nobody really wants 4-mana 7/7’s okay?

Brendyn Lotz

Brendyn Lotz

Brendyn Lotz writes news, reviews, and opinion pieces for Hypertext. His interests include SMEs, innovation on the African continent, cybersecurity, blockchain, games, geek culture and YouTube.