Hearthstone launches its Naga-filled Battlegrounds season and talks about balancing the mode’s heroes


“Why’d it have to be snakes?” Because calling the new Hearthstone Battlegrounds season Rise of the Naga wouldn’t make much sense without having them. The online CCG’s first Battlegrounds season is now live with patch 23.2, bringing the Naga minion type, the Spellcraft keyword, and a couple of new heroes including – you guessed it – a Naga. There’s also some minion pool changes, armor updates, and an event involving N’Zoth, but mostly it’s snake people all the way down.

Speaking of heroes in the Battlegrounds mode, one of the game’s devs took to the forums to explain the rationale behind hero balance adjustments. In summary, the team tries to maintain hero diversity and encourage players to try new things, with hero changes mostly being tuned for newer players (since most tweaks aren’t felt by the mode’s higher MMR competitive playerbase). The post further notes that Rise of the Naga should represent “a big meta shake-up,” with a promise to make adjustments as that dust settles.

Activision-Blizzard is considered a controversial gaming company owing to a long string of scandals over the last few years, including the Blitzchung boycott, mass layoffs, labor disputes, and executive pay fiasco. In 2021, the company was sued by California for fostering a work environment rife with sexual harassment and discrimination, the disastrous corporate response to which compounded Blizzard’s ongoing pipeline issues and the widespread perception that its online games are in decline. Multiple state and federal agencies are investigating the company as employees strike and call for Bobby Kotick’s resignation. As of 2022, the company is being acquired by no less than Microsoft.
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