Content of the article: "Blizzard has pissed off the Hearthstone community, and now needs to do even more to save it."
I have been playing Hearthstone since launch back in March of 2014. At first I was F2P, but found myself having to spend money to obtain more viable decks. Now I am a above casual player (Both Pre-Order Bundles, and about 2,500 gold are my normal start to an expansion cycle at this point) that would play daily or every other day, do my quests by ranking up on ladder (haven't hit legend yet), playing some Tavern Brawl or Battlegrounds or Duels, and the game was OK to good for me. I knew the game had issues (4 legendaries to craft one), but I was enjoying it how I saw fit. With the new rewards system I feel trapped to doing things a certain way, and that way is to grind even longer to get less rewards in this new rewards system which at this point is intentionally broken.
The new rewards system had potential to fix a lot of issues that people have had with the game for years: dust cost, legendary drop rate, lack of achievements, every player type feeling they have a place, to name a few, but instead it was a flat out money grab, and slap in the face to the Hearthstone community. I have been reading posts here on reddit and over on PlayHearthstone, and they all are filled with anger at Blizzard for the implementation of this rewards system. That anger is warranted because Blizzard had promised that the new system would be better, and that things like gold earning would be the same or improved. This was obviously not the case after players did some number crunching, and so the community is now rightfully livid with Blizzard.
Blizzard's response has been a PR scripted non response due to the lack of any real viable information on their path forward or to how they are going to fix this problem they purposely made. It feels like Hearthstone is on the fence. People are mad, a game company is exploiting the game's community, and it feels like the fun has been sucked out of the game for all players. Blizzard will hopefully do the best thing for itself and the community at large, but in business that isn't the standard operation procedure for a company because that goes against the max profit model. Still we as a community can and should voice or frustrations, grievances, and be resolute in our desire for a game that has brought us a lot of enjoyment over the years.
The new rewards system was in concept something that Blizzard should have done years ago, but the implementation of that system is now a step backwards. We will have to wait and see what Blizzard does to fix, and move forward to make the game even better for all players be they new, F2P, Casual, returning, P2W, whales, streamers or professionals. I have watched Blizzard over the years make quick changes to make the meta game as fresh and fun as possible, and this has been really great. If they applied even half of the energy they give to that to making the rewards system something that actually worked we wouldn't be here reading post after post, meme after meme, and comment after comment filled with disgust and negativity. Blizzard needs the Hearthstone community it created to continue to put out more content and make more money, and it is a fine line to walk without exploiting your player base, but that has happened here. Now we just wait and see what Blizzard will do.
In closing I want to say that there is good in the new rewards system. We finally got achievements! They are a combination of fluff and experience earning, but they are achievements far beyond any that we have had before. I enjoy having all of these things that give me a little more status, and more XP (the amount received needs to be bumped up though). And I would like to list some changes I think would be a start to making the game better for all:
– Work with the community to make the rewards system better in regards to XP earning, Gold Earning, and reward improvement at the higher levels
– Get rid of giving packs out as prizes. Give out a Big Hearthstone coin instead that can be use to purchase any pack the player wants. I have 32 classic packs sitting unopened from Tavern Brawls, Quests, etc., because I have the whole classic set, and don't need the cards. They are just sitting waiting for new cards to be added to the classic set for me to even think about opening them.
– Let the community share more. Packs, cards, dust between friends can go along way to making the community bigger.
– Reduce the crafting cost of a legendary.
– Give away more dust
– Have Login rewards?
– Bring back the 3 wins for 10 gold reward, and even add to it with dust and XP Bonus
– Really work at making the game more approachable to new players, and returning players, because player base will make or break the longevity of any game.
There are many more ways to improve Hearthstone, and I hope people reply to this with their ideas, but I really want the game to stay around for a long time, because I have enjoyed playing Hearthstone more than I haven't enjoyed playing it, and I would like it to stay around. Thank you for reading.
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