Blizzard has today announced the next expansion coming to Hearthstone; Fractured in Alterac Valley. Launching on December 8, 2021, and featuring 135 new cards, Fractured in Alterac Valley will make players pick a side; Horde or Alliance. At launch, a special, in-game event will take place, with players earning Honor for their faction in the Battle for Alterac Valley.
When Fractured in Alterac Valley is released, players will choose the Frostwolf Orcs or the Stormpike Dwarves and will receive a card of their chosen faction’s leader for free; Drek’Thar or Vanndar. By simply playing games, players will earn Honor for their faction.
At the conclusion of the event, the winning faction will be declared and a Diamond version of the winning faction’s leader will be gifted to every player. Blizzard says, “Beating opponents of the opposite faction doubles the points received for a victory. At the end of the event, a winning faction will be declared, unlocking the Diamond version of the winning faction’s leader for every player!”
Players will earn 10 Honor for playing a game, 20 Honor for beating an opponent and 40 Honor for beating the opposing faction.
Hearthstone Fractured in Alterac Valley
Included in the 135 new cards are the 10 new Hero cards, one for each class. These 10 Hero cards are the Mercenary for each respective class and come with some game-changing (and potentially breaking) effects. Two of the 10 new Hero cards have been announced; Wildheart Gruff and Lightforged Cariel.
Wildheart Gruff is a 5-cost card with a Battlecry that sets your maximum Mana to 20, grants you a Mana Crystal and Draws a card. Wildheart Gruff’s Hero Power is Nurture and it allows players to either Draw a Card or Gain a Mana Crystal. As a Druid, it’s not difficult to imagine players hitting 20 Mana pretty quickly, which could lead to some earth-shattering plays, Survival of the Fittest twice in one turn anyone?
Lightforged Cariel is a 7-cost card with a Battlecry that deals 2 damage to all enemies and equips a 2/5 Immovable Object. Lightforged Cariel’s Hero Power is Blessing of Queens and gives a random minion in your hand +4/+4. The Immovable Object is probably the most interesting feature of Lightforged Cariel as it does not lose durability. It also halves all damage taken by your hero, rounded up.
Both Vanndar Stormpike and Drek’Thar boast interesting Battlecries which require some clever deckbuilding. Drek’Thar is a 4-cost, 4/4 minion with Battlecry, “If this costs more than every minion in your deck, summon 2 of them.” Vanndar is a 4-cost, 4/4 minion with Battlecry, “If this costs less than every minion in your deck, reduce their cost by (3).”
The remaining cards revealed as part of the announcement of Fractured in Alterac Valley are;
- Bloodseeker – 2-cost, 2/2 Minion – Keyword: Honorable Kill: Gain +1/+1 – HUNTER ONLY
- Siphon Mana – 2-cost Spell – Deal 2 Damage. – Keyword: Honorable Kill: Reduce the Cost of spells in your hand by (1) – MAGE ONLY
- Gnome Private – 1-cost, 1/3 Minion – Keyword: Honorable Kill: Gain +2 Attack
- Knight Captain – 5-cost, 3/3 Minion – Battlecry: Deal 3 Damage, Keyword: Honorable Kill: Gain +3/+3
- Dun Baldar Bridge – 4-cost Objective Card – Lasts 3 turns – After you summon a minion, give it +2/+2 – PALADIN ONLY
- Snowfall Graveyard – 3-cost Objective Card – Lasts 3 turns – Your Deathrattles trigger twice
It wouldn’t be a Hearthstone expansion without a new keyword and/or mechanics and Fractured in Alterac Valley has both. You may have noticed the reveal cards include both Honorable Kill and Objectives.
Honorable Kill is the new keyword for this expansion and activates when dealing exact lethal damage to a minion. Some cards, like Bloodseeker and Gnome Private, have the potential to activate Honorable Kill multiple times. Objectives are cards that activate an effect lasting three turns. The two revealed as part of the announcement are Dun Baldar Bridge and Snowfall Graveyard. Objectives have the potential to be quite powerful if used appropriately, however, we’ve only seen a fraction of the cards included in this expansion, so time will tell.
Stay tuned for additional card reveals in the lead-up to the launch of Fractured in Alterac Valley on December 8, 2021.