Major Milestone Achieved
Blizzard Entertainment’s free-to-play digital card game has defied the odds and become one of the most popular online games in the world
IRVINE, Calif.—November 5, 2018—A little over five years ago, a few Blizzard Entertainment developers were toiling away on a small passion project: Hearthstone®, a free-to-play digital collectible card game at a time when such games were not front of mind for most. They based the game on the company’s Warcraft® universe and polished every aspect—from the flash of the animations to the bombastic voice lines of the heroes—and launched it to critical acclaim globally in 2014. Today Blizzard announced that Hearthstone has hit the 100-million-player mark.†
“Reaching 100 million players is a huge milestone for Hearthstone, but what matters to us even more is the fact that so many people around the world have embraced the spirit of the game,” said J. Allen Brack, president of Blizzard Entertainment. “Whether at events like BlizzCon® and Fireside Gatherings or just in tuning in to watch their favorite streamers, it’s been so inspiring to see millions of players and fans coming together, online and in real life, to participate in the Hearthstone community.”
A Different Kind of Mass Appeal
Hearthstone features a deceptively simple format in which players build digital card decks and duel each other head-to-head or play through one of several different card-based Solo Adventures. As a result of its charm and accessibility—as well as the corresponding entertainment and education provided by numerous talented community content creators—Hearthstone has consistently been a leading game on media platforms like Twitch and YouTube.
As a card-based game, Hearthstone is unlike any of the other games regularly in the top ranks on those platforms. In addition to its highly accessible card-vs.-card gameplay and the colorful personality that comes through its vibrant audio and visual elements, a major difference is that all player-to-player communication takes place through pre-generated voice lines tailored for each of the game’s playable heroes—all conveying warmth, positivity, and good-natured sportsmanship. This helps create a welcoming setting for all players, from beginners to seasoned veterans, and despite being a skill-based competitive experience, offers a change of pace from other competitive games.