Beta access is being granted in waves with the first batch having already been sent out. The beta isn’t under NDA which means beta testers can already begin streaming and posting video of the game. Those who are interested in signing up can do so by visiting the official site or by opting in through their Battle.net account settings.
While all progress will be wiped after the beta ends, Blizzard is already letting players purchase cards in Hearthstone’s cash shop using real money. Blizzard says once Hearthstone goes live, the company will refund players who made a purchase from the in-game store will receive a gold credit equivalent to their purchases. Anyone who purchased anything during the beta will also receive a Golden Legendary card. Player’s who aren’t planning on purchasing anything during the game’s closed beta period can still earn cards and card packs through normal gameplay.
I managed to catch a few videos online and was impressed by how slick the game looked. For being a card game, Blizzard does an excellent job bringing the cards and spells to life with impressive visuals and sound effects.
Hearthstone is slated for a release sometime this year.