New Hearthstone Expansion Announced! The Boomsday Project
Team 5, the team within Blizzard who develop Hearthstone, have announced the name and a handful of cards from the upcoming set of the best digital card game on the market .
The Boomsday Project is the first set announced since the departure of the full-time lead designer, and part-time Rapper Ben Brode, and the reveal had a lot to live up to. Luckily, they have done a great job, at least in my eyes, with this one. I love the silly and dumb skits, and letting members of the design team show off new cards and sets, even if they are not the smallest bit trained to be on camera, is particularly endearing.
The set brings about the return of the Mechs, a card type that hasn't been the focus of the game since Goblins vs Gnomes, one of the first expansions released back in 2014. We saw a preview of the first new keyword mechanic in the set, Magnetic, which allows a card to be played by itself or as an attachment to a mech card, and one card which uses it, Spider Bomb. A 3 mana 2/2 that destroys a random enemy minion upon it's own death is ok, not great in a meta of fully stocked Paladin boards, but the fact it can be used to buff another minion 2/2 and add it's deathrattle gives it some versatility which should make up for the cost. We will have to see what Mechs the Hunters get access to though to really see if this is worth it.
The other new mechanic is not a keyworded one but looks to be a name cycle, and that is Omega. These cards will all have a sperate effect that will trigger if a player is on 10 mana crystals, so turn 10 onwards, or sooner if you're playing Druid. The first card revealed is pretty bonkers and that is Omega Defender. This neutral minion is a fairly average statted minion at a 2/6 Taunt for 4 mana, however when played with 10 mana crystals it gets +10 attack making it a 12/6 Taunt, for 4 mana. Which is insane. Of course it is an Epic, and there will be other meta defining cards and more reveals et cetera et cetera but this seems like an auto include in any control deck that wants the game to get into the late turns.
One other key thing spoiled is the first cycle of class legendary spells. Spells have so far only been made in the lesser rarities so they
have taken their time to get to the Legendary slot, but with Blizzard now printing 2 class legendaries per set it allows them to make 1 legendary minion and then one 'other' which the spells fit into nicely. We've only seen the Rogue one so far - 5 mana draw your entire deck - which I'm sure will have it's uses (or not...) but will be interesting to see what they think a Mage legendary spell's power level will be. Or what they could possibly give Druid that's better than Ultimate Infestation that won't instantly break the game.
The set also seems to be following in the footsteps of the more recent ones and containing a set of single player content. The Witchwood's Monster Hunts and Kobolds and Catacomb's Dungeon Runs have been some of the most fun I've had with Hearthstone with each set and it's good that this is continuing. The 'Unsanctioned Research' as they are calling it this time, seems to task the player with certain puzzles, like placing them halfway through a game and seeing if you can figure out how to win, which is a really fascinating idea that I can't wait to try.
The Boomsday Project will release August 7th and more card reveals begin July 23rd, a little under 2 weeks from now. Get Hype!