Alongside the release of the Wailing Caverns mini-set, Hearthstone patch 20.4 will include updates to Standard cards, Battlegrounds and more.
Three cards that are playable in Standard mode will receive updates. First Day of School will now add two random minions that cost one mana to a player’s hand. Meanwhile, Hand of A’dal will give a minion one less health than it did before. Finally, the timing on Unbound Elemental’s ability has changed to after the player plays an Overload card.
According to developers, First Day of School and Hand of A’dal will receive these nerfs to help other classes out against Paladin. Currently, they allow for strong performances in the main Libram, Aggro, Secret and Menagerie Paladin deck archetypes.
“Another note on First Day of School: While the last balance change for this card only resulted in a mild change in power, we will still be attempting changes like it in the future,” the developer notes stated.
The current balance approach consists of light changes while also making sure decks remain intact despite nerfs. The developers said this approach leaves them open to make further adjustments later if needed. For two weeks, these cards will also be eligible for dust refunds after patch 20.4 goes live.
Updates to Hearthstone Battlegrounds
As for Hearthstone Battlegrounds, players will get the option to face others as new heroes. One is Mutanus the Devourer, who has the Devour power that costs zero mana. It also removes a friendly minion, spits its stats onto another and gives the player one gold.
The other new hero is Guff Runetotem, who has Natural Balance for one mana. Natural Balance gives a friendly minion of each tier +2/+1. These heroes will be formally released on June 17, but players who have Battlegrounds Perks will get early access to them.
In terms of the current hero pool, Maiev Shadowsong will be temporarily removed from it.
As for minions, Hexruin Marauder will debut as a 3/5 that gains +3/+3 if the player has six or fewer minions at the end of their turn.
Meanwhile, the presence of Quilboar minions will no longer be guaranteed in every match. Siegebreaker will also be removed from Hearthstone Battlegrounds. And although Cap’n Hoggarr will have no functional changes, the card text will be reworded to “whenever” instead of “after.”
For players who like to fight against others in Arena mode, cards from the following sets will be included in the pool:
- Ashes of Outland
- Darkmoon Races Mini-Set
- Forged in the Barrens
- Goblins vs. Gnomes
- Kobolds & Catacombs
- Madness at the Darkmoon Faire
- Scholomance Academy
- Wailing Caverns Mini-Set
These sets will be available in Arena mode alongside the patch 20.4 launch.
Hero skins and card backs
Several previously released alternative skins and card backs will also be available. A total of 11 skins and 94 card backs can be gained by players.
At launch, the following alternative skins will be made available for either 1,200 or 1,800 in-game gold:
- Alleria Windrunner
- Dame Hazelbark
- Lei Shen/Thunder King
- Magni Bronzebeard
- Maiev Shadowsong
- Morgl the Oracle
- Sir Annoy-O
- Sylvanas Windrunner
Meanwhile, the card backs that don’t come with a skin will be available for either 500 or 600 gold.
Book of Mercenaries Xyrella
Book of Mercenaries Xyrella will also launch on June 3, allowing players to earn a card pack that contains only Standard Priest cards.
The single-player game mode will also feature Guff Runetotem on June 15 and Malfurion Stormrage on June 22. While Guff Runetotem is unique to Hearthstone, Malfurion Stormrage is from the World of Warcraft universe.