Ars Technica has a … well, not really an “interview” with Hearthstone Game Director Ben Brode up on YouTube. Rather, Brode simply answers a bunch of questions, which he labels the “Unsolved Mysteries” of Hearthstone. Hey, content is content, and Brode makes even a basic Q&A entertaining.
I won’t get into every question and answer — for that, watch the video below — but my favorite had to be the “secret” that allows you to silence the Lich King if you’re playing as a Priest. “We recorded an entire series of muffled Lich King sounds as he tries to emote at you the rest of the game,” said Brode. I have to say, that’s pretty mmm mmmrph mmmnn!
By the way, and the next Hearthstone expansion set is “through the final design process, which is the phase where we really focus on the balance and the fun and the clarity of the cards,” according to Brode. The set after that is currently in that final design process, and the set after that, which should launch about a year from now, is in the initial design phase. As someone who used to design physical CCGs for a living, that’s farther out than even we used to plan, but probably not atypical for bigger design teams, like those for Magic: The Gathering.
Oh, and his admitting that players came up with deck archetypes like Freeze Mage and Miracle Rogue, which the dev team never anticipated (and got destroyed by)? Yep, happened all the time to me. Glad it didn’t just mean I was a bad designer.