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Hearthstone

Hearthstone now available worldwide on Android devices

Fantasy, Launches, Free-to-Play, Mobile, Hearthstone

hearthstone
After a soft launch in select countries on Android devices, Hearthstone is now available worldwide for Android gamers.

To run it, you'll need to have an Android device that's at least 6" or larger. Like the other platform versions, the Android edition of Hearthstone will sync up with your Battle.net account and allow you to use your existing cards (if you have any). Plans are in the works for an Android version to work on smaller-size phones.

Hearthstone recently won the award for Massively's Best Pseudo-MMO of 2014. Android players can snag it on Google Play or through Amazon.

Not So Massively: HEX gets new cards, Dota 2 cancels Christmas, and Hearthstone lands on Android (sorta)

Betas, Trailers, Video, Expansions, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, Patches, PvP, News Items, Free-to-Play, MMOFPS, MOBA, Crowdfunding, Destiny, Elite: Dangerous, Path of Exile, HEX, Hearthstone, E-sports, OARPG

HEX
Welcome back to No So Massively, where every Monday we round up the highlights from the past week in the world of MOBAs, roguelikes, MMOTCGs, and other games that aren't quite MMOs.

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Hearthstone players struggle to buy expansion packs

Fantasy, Bugs, Expansions, Previews, Free-to-Play, Trading Card Games, Hearthstone

hearthstone
While a new expansion to the hit card game Hearthstone is cause for much celebration, in some corners it's also been cause for consternation as players have struggled to buy the right packs from the in-game store. This and other expansion issues got so bad, in fact, that getting these CS requests sorted out forced Blizzard to slightly delay Goblins vs. Gnomes' European launch (although it is now live in that region).

The problem, as dismayed players and streamers discovered, is that the default pack purchase option in Hearthstone's store was for the base game's cards, not the expansions. Gung-ho players would then accidentally mass-purchase a whole lot of packs thinking that they were from Goblins vs. Gnomes, only to discover that they just wasted hundreds of dollars on cards they already had. Touch Arcade has come to the rescue by pointing to a handy guide how to buy the right packs for the expansion.

Not So Massively: Hearthstone's expansion, The Crew's launch, and Dead Island: Epidemic's beta

Betas, Sci-Fi, Trailers, Video, Business Models, Expansions, Launches, MMO Industry, Patches, PvP, News Items, Free-to-Play, Mobile, Consoles, MMOFPS, MMORTS, Post-Apocalyptic, Miscellaneous, Not So Massively, World of Warplanes, MOBA, League of Legends, Destiny, Star Citizen, Elite: Dangerous, Infinite Crisis, Hearthstone

NSM - Hearthstone
Welcome back to No So Massively, where every Monday we round up the highlights from the past week in the world of MOBAs, roguelikes, MMOTCGs, and other games that aren't quite MMOs.

Continue Reading

Hearthstone launches Goblins vs. Gnomes on December 8th

Fantasy, Expansions, Patches, News Items, Free-to-Play, Trading Card Games, Casual, Miscellaneous, Hearthstone

Yes, this is a thing that's happening.
It seems as if it was only a month ago that Hearthstone players learned the title of the game's first expansion, Goblins vs. Gnomes. Probably because it was a month ago. That expansion is launching on December 8th, adding 120 new cards into the card pool and displaying an alacrity that other Blizzard titles could only dream of achieving. The new expansion cards can be crafted, purchased, or earned via the Arena, just like the existing packs except with new cards.

If you're interested in having a launch party, Blizzard is also interested in your launch party. If you plan your event, have it registered as a proper gathering by notifying the community team, and then submit pictures and stories about the event by December 22nd, you could win a little Hearthstone care package. Or you could just kick back and enjoy the new expansion by playing. Your call.

Not So Massively: Elite's refund controversy, Civ Online's closed beta, and Ghost in the Shell's G-Star debut

Betas, Trailers, Video, Business Models, Game Mechanics, Launches, New Titles, PvP, News Items, Free-to-Play, Mobile, Consoles, MMOFPS, World of Tanks, Not So Massively, MOBA, League of Legends, Crowdfunding, Destiny, Hearthstone, E-sports

NSM - Ghost in the Shell
Welcome back to No So Massively, where every Monday we round up the highlights from the past week in the world of MOBAs, roguelikes, MMOTCGs, and other games that aren't quite MMOs.

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Not So Massively: Destiny's patch, Hearthstone's lawsuit, and Lost Ark's reveal

Betas, Video, Business Models, Game Mechanics, Patches, PvP, News Items, Free-to-Play, Mobile, Consoles, MMOFPS, Dev Diaries, Miscellaneous, Not So Massively, World of Warplanes, MOBA, League of Legends, Crowdfunding, Destiny, Star Citizen, Elite: Dangerous, Infinite Crisis, Buy-to-Play, Hearthstone, E-sports, OARPG

NSM
Welcome back to No So Massively, where every Monday we round up the highlights from the past week in the world of MOBAs, roguelikes, MMOTCGs, and other games that aren't quite MMOs.

Continue Reading

Blizzard issues thousands (more) Hearthstone bot bans

Fantasy, Culture, News Items, Free-to-Play, Mobile, Trading Card Games, Casual, Miscellaneous, Hearthstone

Not just for using bots.  The first expansion is all about goblins and gnomes.  Come on.
Good news, Hearthstone players. If you've been using a bot to automate your gameplay, you'll log in today to find a shiny new prize! Specifically, that shiny new prize is not being able to log in because you've been banned. Your prize was being banned. Blizzard has awarded this prize to "several thousand" Hearthstone accounts using third-party tools to automate gameplay; the bans are permanent, so no need to worry about losing them at the end of the season.

Players who have not been botting and violating the game's TOS will also log in to find a shiny new prize, which is a play environment with far fewer bots. Isn't that nice? The official post reminds players to report suspicious behavior by emailing the development team so that in the future another group of cheaters can wake up to find a brand-new lifetime ban locking them out of the game.

Those of you who can still log in may also want to take the opportunity to vote on the next teaser for the Goblins vs. Gnomes expansion.

[Thanks to Dengar for the tip!]

Blizzard wins lawsuit and shuts down Hearthstone clone

Fantasy, MMO Industry, Free-to-Play, Trading Card Games, Legal, Hearthstone

hearthstone
Back in January we reported that Blizzard levied a lawsuit against Unico Interactive for its game, Legend of Crouching Dragon, which Blizzard claimed was a reskinned clone of Hearthstone.

It looks as though the courts agreed, awarding Blizzard and its Chinese partner NetEase $1.6 million due to copyright infringement. Legend of Crouching Dragon has been removed from app stores, and Unico said that it will be reimbursing players for money spent on it to date.

Even with the ruling, Unico remains defiant against "false stories" in the press and claims that it hasn't seen any official order to pay compensation to Blizzard.

Not So Massively: Overwatch's reveal, Hearthstone's expansion, and Dawngate's sunset

Betas, Fantasy, Sci-Fi, Super-hero, Trailers, Video, Business Models, Events (Real-World), Game Mechanics, Lore, New Titles, Patches, Previews, PvP, News Items, War, Free-to-Play, Mobile, Trading Card Games, Consoles, MMOFPS, Miscellaneous, Not So Massively, MOBA, League of Legends, Diablo III, Destiny, Elite: Dangerous, HEX, Hearthstone, The Division, OARPG, Overwatch

NSM - Overwatch
Welcome back to No So Massively, where every Monday we round up the highlights from the past week in the world of MOBAs, roguelikes, MMOTCGs, and other games that aren't quite MMOs.
  • Blizzard announced online team-shooter Overwatch at BlizzCon. Chris Metzen says Blizzard is trying to build a more representative game with less hypersexualization.
  • Hearthstone is launching in December and getting a new expansion: Goblins vs. Gnomes.
  • EA's MOBA Dawngate is shutting down in three months.
  • League of Legends introduced Kalista, the Spear of Vengeance.
  • MMOTCG HEX dropped its beta key requirement but denied that it is in open beta.
  • Heroes of the Storm's closed beta starts January 13th. It's also getting a sweet Diablo III-themed map.
  • Diablo III previewed its upcoming season. According to content designer Kevin Martens, Diablo was once considered for an MMO, but no longer.
  • David Braben says Elite: Dangerous' December 16th launch date is "sensible."
  • Star Citizen passed $60 million in fundraising.
  • Quirky indie MMOFPS Hunternet boasts 700-player battles.
  • World of Tanks' 9.4 patch added Stalingrad map and tweaked strongholds.
  • The Crew hinted at a new "PvP mode" and season passes.
  • MechWarrior Online's latest dev vlog covered inner sphere quirks and faction switching.
  • Ubisoft said that The Division's PC experience won't suffer because of consoles.
  • Some jerk swatted a Bungie/Destiny exec; the internet demands prison time for said jerk.
  • The latest World of Speed vid features nearly four minutes of gameplay.
  • Bigpoint's Shards of War introduced a new sentinel, Vox.
  • Undead Labs discussed balance in Moonrise.
  • Dota is now the subject of a course at Chongqing Energy College in China.

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BlizzCon 2014: Hearthstone: Goblins vs. Gnomes expansion announced

Fantasy, Events (Real-World), Expansions, Free-to-Play, Trading Card Games, Hearthstone

hearthstone
It's about to get all funky and explosive up in Hearthstone. At BlizzCon today, the team announced that the upcoming expansion is called Gobins vs. Gnomes and will be releasing next month.

Hearthstone: Goblins vs. Gnomes will contain over 120 new cards that draw upon the innovations of these clever and mad inventors. Two of the cards mentioned were the Explosive Sheep and the Annoy-O-Tron. Currently, the expansion is "in a final balance pass" prior to its December launch.

Hearthstone will also be coming out on Android devices next month.

Liveblogging the opening ceremonies of BlizzCon 2014

World of Warcraft, Fantasy, Sci-Fi, Video, Events (Real-World), MMO Industry, News Items, Free-to-Play, Trading Card Games, Events (Massively's Coverage), Miscellaneous, Diablo III, Subscription, Hearthstone, E-sports

You call it snark, I call it a healthy dose of world-weary cynicism.
Dear readers, I am going to be wholly honest with you. When I was asked if I could do this liveblog for BlizzCon, I thought I was being asked if I was capable. Like asking "can you ride your bike with no handlebars" or "can you sing to a cat until it leaves the room in disgust." But here I am now, so apparently the question was significantly less rhetorical than I had originally assumed and now I need to actually do this.

You can watch the standard definition feed of the convention's opening ceremonies on the official site for free. I'll be liveblogging the important announcements in the comments if you're in a place where you can't watch along (at work, misplaced your headphones, hiding in an Amish barn and fearing discovery should your phone give away even the slightest beep); highlights will be collected past the break. There will probably be announcements about Blizzard games! Like World of Warcraft and Hearthstone and maybe, if it's very lucky, StarCraft II.

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BlizzCon kicks off on Friday, virtual tickets still available

World of Warcraft, Events (Real-World), MMO Industry, News Items, Miscellaneous, Diablo III, Hearthstone

Same venue as last year, then?
If you've been waiting patiently for the next big convention focused entirely around Blizzard's game catalogue, your wait is almost over. BlizzCon 2014 kicks off on Friday, November 7th, with the opening ceremonies starting at 2:00 p.m. EST. There's no chance of attending in person if you don't already have a ticket, but you can still pick up a virtual ticket, and DirecTV customers can also grab a pay-per-view stream that includes a virtual ticket and the associated benefits.

The convention will host a variety of tournaments, including the Hearthstone championships, the StarCraft II championships, and the World of Warcraft Arena championship. There will also be the usual assortment of lore panels, development previews, and reveals for the various games under the Blizzard banner, included the much-anticipated Warlords of Draenor expansion. If you've been on the fence about getting a stream, take a look at the list of festivities and get ready to see what's coming from the studio this weekend.

Trademark filings hint at possible Hearthstone expansions

Fantasy, Expansions, News Items, Free-to-Play, Mobile, Miscellaneous, Hearthstone

Technically, there has never been expansion which mentions chickens in the title.  Worth noting.
Gamers love to speculate about expansion titles, and with good cause. If an expansion is titled The Battle for the Southern Ridge, well, you can be pretty sure there will be some fighting and you'll be on the southern ridge. If it's titled Steve Gets a Subpoena, you look for a character named steve. This is why particular attention has been paid to two new trademark filings by Blizzard, both of which seem like perfect titles for an upcoming Hearthstone expansion.

The names in question are "Eye of Azshara" and "Overwatch." While the latter could apply to many games, the former seems quite clearly aimed at either World of Warcraft or Hearthstone, and it seems even more unlikely that the company would announce the next expansion for World of Warcraft as players are still waiting for Warlords of Draenor. Is it a red herring or harbinger of things to come? We'll know more when BlizzCon takes place later this week.

Turns out Blizzard found more Hearthstone cheaters to ban

Fantasy, Bugs, Business Models, Events (Real-World), Game Mechanics, News Items, Free-to-Play, Trading Card Games, Hearthstone

Hearthstone
Earlier this week, Blizzard banned "several thousand" botter accounts in MMOTCG Hearthstone for the crime of botting. But the bans were only temporary, and the problem players will be back in the game by the turn of the year.

The subjects of a new wave of bans, says Blizzard, won't be let off so easily. Community Manager Whirthun told forumgoers last night that win traders have and will continue to be banned -- permanently:
We've recently banned Hearthstone accounts that were found to be participating in win trading. Win trading at any rank is something that we do not take lightly, and is in violation of our Terms of Use. As we mentioned in our previous statement regarding fair play in Hearthstone, instances of cheating will not be tolerated. Accounts that were discovered participating in win trading have received permanent account closure and disqualification from events where ranking is used as a method of qualification.
Win trading is an exploit of the matchmaking system to position accounts for easy ladder climbing. PC Gamer reports that several big-name Hearthstone players have already fallen to the ban, including a grey hat player who went public with the exploit nearly a year ago in the hopes of provoking Blizzard to fix it.

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