Hearthstone is Blizzard’s new electronic card game a la DotP and it’s fun. It’s really fun. As in I can’t stop playing it. It’s remarkably similar to DotP with some slight but important differences so here’s a crash course list of stuff to remember.
Mana droughts don’t exist
Instead of Lands, you have Mana Crystals. At the start of every turn, you gain a new Mana Crystal and they all refill to be used again. Hearthstone has succeeded here where many nations have failed by providing sustainable, renewable energy (to a cap of 10 Mana Crystals).
Total Freedom… to punch things
We all know the drill with MTG combat. You send creatures to attack, your opponent will allocate blockers, rinse and repeat until they have no more creatures and you can punch them in the face. In Hearthstone, you can punch them or any of their minions in the face at any time*. This is easily what will catch out many players of MTG as we’re so used to needing a clean board before whittling away our opponent’s health and it’s a common mistake I’ve seen in the game so far (not least, of course, from myself).
Deciding whether or not it’s better to kill their minions or face-punch them into oblivion isn’t always easy, though. If you ignore your opponent’s three “ok but not great” dudes due to face mutilation and they throw down a 7/7 which gives all of their dudes +1/+1 promoting them to “oh shit, they can wipe me out now” then you’re going to get really annoyed with yourself and probably regret it for the rest of your natural life.
‘Tis but a Scratch!
All your minions have a set health value and any damage they take carries over to subsequent turns. Sounds simple right? Good, that means that you’ll at no point forget this and lose your 10/10 big bad to a 2/1 Murloc and be thoroughly confused as to what in the actual fuck just happened. Thankfully, there are ways and means of healing your minions back up.
I need a Hero
All of the playable Heroes in Hearthstone have an ability to help them out in a fight ranging from hurling a fire ball to summoning minions or even equipping your Hero with a weapon. For the love of everything you hold dear, don’t forget about your Hero Ability. The number of times that my Hero Ability has saved my ass is innumerable.
Just keep in mind that if you attack a minion with your Hero then the same rules of minion combat apply; you both deal damage to each other at the same time which caused one of my opponents to kill themselves for me. It was a nice gesture but the whole thing felt a little hollow.
There’s a Log
There’s a log of all cards played and action taken on the left hand side. This doesn’t make the transfer from MTG to Hearthstone difficult or anything like that, it’s just an awesome feature that should be highlighted.
Have I missed anything? Want to know more about Hearthstone? Let us know in the comments below!
*There are, of course, certain things that make this impossible. Most notably, the Taunt ability which forces you to only attack that minion.