Changes of rather epic proportions are headed to Blizzard’s Hearthstone in 2017. In what is looking to be the biggest shake-up of the collectible card game’s core content structure since its release, a lengthy post has been published by the developer over on Battle.net that provides a step by step rundown of what’s changing and when.
For those unaware, beginning with last year’s Whispers of the Old Gods, Blizzard detailed a yearly release schedule of new cards that involved two 100 plus card sets and a single Adventure expansion – single-player add-ons that introduce a smaller number of cards alongside unique PvE content. From 2017 onwards, that will no longer be the case – replacing the usual schedule will be three full card sets, each of which will contain around 130 new cards, with Blizzard planning to incorporate Adventure-type content into each one.
The Year of the Mammoth, as it’s so-called, will officially begin with the launch of this year’s first set which, if recent leaks are to be believed, could have a prehistoric flavor, featuring dinosaurs and other extinct fauna.
Finally, Blizzard also confirms that a small number of cards from the Classic Set will be rotated out of Standard play once the new one goes live, retiring them to a special ‘Hall of Fame’ collection that can only be used in Wild. If you’re unfamiliar with the differences between both modes, see here.
The cards being taken out of Standard are as follows.
- Azure Drake
- Sylvanas Windrunner
- Ragnaros The Firelord
- Ice Lance
- Power Overwhelming
No release date for Hearthstone‘s first set of 2017 is mentioned in the post, but if we’re to assume the gap between each expansion remains similar to 2016’s, expect it to arrive around April. The most recent expansion, Mean Streets of Gadgetzan, launched last December.