The first major add-on for Blizzard’s popular Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft collectible card game is nearly upon us.
Curse of Naxxramas should debut on PC, Mac, and iPad on July 22. This new campaign introduces a single-player adventure mode to the head-to-head online card battler. The release is coming at a key time in the multibillion online game industry, as Hearthstone has slid down the top-download and top-grossing charts for iPad recently. Blizzard plans to break Naxxramas up into five parts that you can purchase for $7 each, but you can get the first one (the Arachnid Quarter) for free during the month-long launch event. If you do that, you can purchase the rest for $20. Players can also use in-game gold to buy the expansions. Each one will set you back 700 pieces of the shiny yellow stuff.
This is the first expansion to the free-to-play Hearthstone, and it adds 30 cards to the overall selection. Blizzard released the game earlier this year, and the studio focused on providing a compelling online multiplayer experience. The only solo option up until now was a practice mode that pitted you against computer-controlled opponents in an approximation of the standard online game.
It’s also facing some key competition at the moment. Magic 2015: Duels of the Planeswalkers debuted this week, and Magic: The Gathering publisher Wizards of the Coast doesn’t see Hearthstone as a threat despite some seeing the new free-to-play card-battler adding significantly to Activision Blizzard’s bottom line.
Hearthstone is Blizzard’s first free-to-play game as well as its first tablet release. The studio makes money by selling players booster decks as well as access to a special Arena mode. For more information on the cards that start becoming available next week, check out Hearthstone’s Facebook page.
Jason Wilson contributed to this report.