Hearthstone’s latest expansion, Rise of Shadows, introduced players to the League of E.V.I.L – a team full of the card game’s biggest and baddest – when it launched earlier this year. The update kicked off a year of storytelling – a major component of which is the game’s upcoming solo adventure, The Dalaran Heist.
During a recent hearthside chat Hearthstone mission designer Giovannio Scarpati revealed that the heist is Arch-Villain Rafaam’s attempt to steal WoW’s floating city in its entirety. Over the course of five chapters – the first of which will be available from May 16 – you’ll play as one of nine League of E.V.I.L henchmen (each representing a different Hearthstone class) attempting to outwit the Dalaran Defenders.
Each chapter will take place in a different location, and each location will put its own twist on the traditional Hearthstone formula. While your trip to the Dalaran Bank will present coin-filled coffers to be busted open, heading into the sewers will see the attack and health of all minions reversed, making drafting the ideal deck a much trickier experience.
New rulesets won’t be the only twist you’ll have to contend with. Blizzard has plenty of tools to let you work around the cards at your disposal. Mages will have access to their traditional hero power, but they’ll also be able to unlock new powers, letting them lower the cost of random cards in their hand or freeze enemy minions. Additionally, there will be alternate starting decks, which are unlocked as you play.
If that weren’t enough, there are random decks to play with, and tavern encounters – non-combat events which will let you change up your deck on the fly. If you want even more challenge, there’s Anomaly mode, which lets you play with random rule modifiers that Scarpati says can range from minor tweaks to Tavern Brawl-style changes, and both normal and heroic difficulty settings.
The first chapter will be available for free when the mode launches next week, and will let you play as Rakanishu, the flame elemental that lives inside King Togwaggle’s lantern. Chapter 2, which takes players to the Violet Hold where they’ll have to play around imprisoned minions, will be available straight away. That’ll set you back either 700 gold or $6.99/£6.99, but you can also buy all the chapters (which will be released over the next few weeks) at once for $19.99/£16.99.
Win or lose, you’ll be held very much to account. Blizzard will track your victories across nearly every metric imaginable, be it hero, deck, location, or even hero power. With all of that tracking, and a huge number of different ways to play, The Dalaran Heist promises to be the most ambitious Hearthstone solo adventures to date.
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