Lately there have been a lot of criticisms of the Hearthstone developers for their lack of communication. I wrote an article on the subject just last week. However, since then, Ben Brode has commented on the forums and Reddit. He is the lead designer of Hearthstone and the one who does most of the player correspondence, and his posts addressed some controversial community topics. These comments will have a huge effect on the state of Hearthstone in the future.
So what’s the deal?
Basically, the developers are looking into taking some cards from the classic set and changing them. They believe that the classic cards are shaping the metas too heavily, and need to be changed. As he said in his first post: “The goal with Standard is to keep the meta fresh for each yearly rotation.” The problem is that the metas were too heavily influenced by the classic cards, which don’t change from year to year. The metas didn’t look like they would be changing significantly, so the developers are looking into changing key cards.
Once Ben Brode posted his comments regarding the developers’ opinions, the community immediately fought back. The biggest problem that most had was that they were told that the classic set would be forever. Mostly this amounted to people being upset that their crafted cards would be changed. Those on a budget or new to the game especially were annoyed. They had recently opened or crafted cards from the classic set, thinking they were forever, and that had been thrown into doubt.
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Ben Brode was quick to reply to the criticisms. He outlined three different paths that Blizzard’s developers could take, and asked for feedback. The first path was to simply leave the cards as is, and allow them to shape future metas. The second was to change (read: nerf) the cards so that they remained in classic and standard, but had less of an impact. The final option was to simply rotate them to wild, but leave them untouched.
A very important part of it was that he said that the second two options would have full dust refunds. For me and many others, this was the most important part. Most of the responses agreed that the third option would be the best, as long as the dust is refunded and no one is directly hurt by the changes.
Not only are the developers thinking about implementing important change soon, they actually asked for feedback! This is a huge step for the Hearthstone developers. Many of my criticisms in the past have been directly related to lack of communication. If this trend continues moving forward, we’ve got good things on the horizon. For the meantime, here’s hoping people are polite and civil. Don’t scare the developers off! And hopefully this means our standard experience will be much better next season.
Big changes are coming. I’m glad the Hearthstone developers are finally willing to meet us halfway.