Hearthstone is getting some major changes this spring with the introduction of new game formats. To give Hearthstone a fresher experience, Blizzard Entertainment will introduce the Standard Play Mode that will force players to use a deck built solely from a pool of cards that were released in the current and previous calendar year, along with a core foundation of the Basic and Classic card sets. The Basic and Classic card sets will always be valid for Standard mode. Naturally you will only be watched against other players who are using Standard decks.
Standard mode aims to create a more dynamic and balanced metagame, but at the same time it gives Hearthstone‘s developers more freedom to design exciting new cards. It also lets newer players jump into the game without having to collect as many cards as before. When Standard goes live this spring, players will have access to the following sets: Basic, Classic, Blackrock Mountain, The Grand Tournament, The League of Explorers and the Spring 2016 Expansion, which has not been announced.
That means Curse of Naxxramas and Goblins vs Gnomes will not be part of Standard.
The other game mode will be called Wild, which is the Hearthstone you already know. Simply put, there is nothing changing for Wild and any and all cards available can be used in your Wild deck. The change also means that Adventures and Expansions that are not part of the Standard format will no longer be available for purchase from the Shop. For this year, that will include Curse of Naxxramas and Goblins vs Gnomes. As a result, players will be able to craft the cards using Arcane Dust, even cards that were previously un-craftable from Adventures. Those that have purchased at least the first wing of an Adventure before it cycled out will still be able to finish acquiring and playing the remaining wings.
With the two different formats being added to the game, players will be able to rank up in each one individually. You will only collect ranked rewards at the end of the season based on the highest rank you attained in one format or the other.
Expect adjustments to also come to a number of Basic and Classic cards, including class cards, as a result of the new game modes.
Lastly – and arguably the most exciting news – Hearthstone will finally get more deck slots. For players that have unlocked all nine heroes, you will also unlock nine more deck slots, bringing the grand total to 18.