At Gamescom 2016 we talked to Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft's Game Designer Peter Whalen about the latest expansion to the game, One Night in Karazhan, as well as what's going on in the meta game and what's in store for the future.
In terms of the meta, Whalen said "it was actually a really cool evolution. As Whispers of the Old Gods came out the first month or so people tried new and crazy things. There were some dominant decks that had existed in the previous format that some of them became much much weaker [...] and then much, much later even as recently as a few weeks ago we've seen new decks". He continued "it's actually been really cool to see the meta game develop over time, over the course of those three, four months since Whispers of the Old Gods launched".
"Our players are always going to surprise us with cool new synergies, cool new decks that they've developed and that's one of the fun parts of it. We get to see how the players take our cards and do things with it. If we could ever make Hearthstone in a place where we could solve it with our tiny development team relative to the player base then it wouldn't be any fun".
Talking about Hearthstone and the expansions in general, Whalen said "it's important for us to keep being charming and fun and to find the light-hearted and joyful aspects of World of Warcraft and really play them up. Karazhan is really one of these iconic, great experiences in World of Warcraft"
"One of our values is delightful surprise so we want to make sure we always keep our players on their toes. We recently just did the Whispers of the Old God expansion which was a little on the spooky side, a little darker, and so we wanted to do something surprising and fun and so Karazhan is an iconic raid [and] we wanted to explore that in a light-hearted way".
"In general when we're looking for an expansion or an adventure we look at the things that players love, the things that players remember and also the things that will just surprise players, that we can explore in a new Hearthstone way".
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