Hearthstone nerfs bothersome Quest Rogue deck, skirts around Chinese lockbox regulations

    
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Following Hearthstone’s most recent expansion, Journey to Un’Goro, one deck has come to dominate pretty much all others — and Blizzard now says that it is high time it left the meta.

The studio announced that it would be nerfing the key card behind the “Quest Rogue” deck to stop this runaway train: “The Caverns Below is uniquely powerful versus several slower, control-oriented decks and played often enough that it’s pushing those decks out of play. This change should help expand the deck options available to players both now and after the release of the next expansion.”

Meanwhile, over in China Blizzard has had to employ a… creative solution to get around a law that forces video game companies to state the odds obtaining desired items in lockboxes (of which Hearthstone’s card packs are considered). Instead of allowing players to purchase packs directly, Blizzard now encourages players to buy quantities of arcane dust, after which they will be gifted “free” packs that require no such revelations.

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Jeremy Barnes

wow, Blizzard is real afraid of sharing those odds.

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Gadgets-4G

Well, we should all celebrate yet another multimillion dollar industry deciding what laws they will and will not follow. Lockboxes are gambling and as such have no place in a game available to minors. Or in places where such activities are illegal.

Mewmew
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Mewmew

Wow, they did all this just so they wouldn’t have to reveal the draw rate of certain cards? Are they really that much worse than other rates so they’d do all this to avoid letting people see?

Other companies reveal their .5-3% stuff quite often, though maybe they just haven’t thought of a creative way to get around it like this or they wouldn’t.

Companies are required to reveal the rates on “lock boxes” so Blizzard thinks of a way to skirt the law. That isn’t really that fair of Blizzard, why doesn’t everybody just do this now so none of us get to ever know the draw rates and we can go back to blindly spending hundreds and thousands? No, Blizzard shouldn’t be allowed to skirt the law, they should be forced to reveal them there if they want to sell them there, like everybody else.

Many companies are voluntarily revealing them in the US now just because they have to in China as well. It’s good to know and see. Get with the program Blizzard, it’s not like you’re not making enough money.

Andrew Ross
Staff
Andrew Ross

It’s not just China either. Japan requires it as well, and the game’s available in Japanese (I even saw League of Explorers advertised in a Toho Cinema as part of their trailer reel).

Andrew Ross
Staff
Andrew Ross

This is why we discussed TCGs when talking about gambling laws, and even had a professional lawyer comment that they seem to fit the bill: http://massivelyop.com/2017/01/17/__trashed-3/

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Arktouros

If it wasn’t deceptive or shady they wouldn’t attempt to hide it. The fact that they hide it means they know how bad it is. I don’t usually root for China, but I hope they either crack down on Blizzard or rewrite their laws so they have to disclose the chance of getting items from “free gifts” as well as direct purchases.