'Hearthstone' Gets New 'Kobolds & Catacombs' Expansion, Single-Player Mode

BlizzCon 2017 kicked off with news about StarCraft II going free-to-play and new heroes joining the Heroes of the Storm roster. Next came a choose-your-own-adventure panel from the Hearthstone team, which announced a new expansion called "Kobolds & Catacombs" that promises to dazzle you with a new single-player mode, game mechanics, and a heap of cards that should make any deck feel that much more powerful.

If you aren't familiar with it, Hearthstone is effectively Blizzard's answer to "Magic the Gathering" and other trading card games. You select a hero, build a deck, and do battle with other players to prove your merit. (Or just kill a few minutes at work.) The game is quite popular—it passed 70 million players in May—and at least some of those players spend hours on end opening card packs and making their latest decks.

Blizzard appeals to those die-hards with expansions like "Kobolds & Catacombs." Introducing new cards gives Hearthstone players new things to play with and helps keep the meta from going too stale. The company had another goal with this expansion: giving people something to do when they don't feel like interacting with other people, even through a digital card game. That's where the game's new single-player mode comes in.

The "Kobolds & Catacombs" single-player mode tasks you with a simple dungeon crawl wherein you'll fight eight randomly selected bosses with a deck that starts out with a measly 10 cards. You'll gain more cards if you defeat a boss—if you lose, however, your deck is reset and you'll have to start over with a new tactic. Blizzard's hope is that the mode's random nature will ensure you never get bored or want for something to do.

The expansion also has you covered if you simply wants some new cards, too. The main attraction is the addition of new legendary weapons for each of the game's nine heroes (even those who didn't have weapons before). A total of 135 new cards will arrive alongside "Kobolds & Catacombs" when it debuts sometime in December, so you shouldn't feel like there's a shortage of available cards any time soon.

Blizzard also has a special treat for BlizzCon 2017 attendees and virtual ticket holders: a golden version of the new "Marin the Fox" card that officially debuts on November 6. This golden card is available only during BlizzCon; you won't be able to get it in a card pack or craft it later.

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TypeStrategy Card Game
DeveloperBlizzard Entertainment
PublisherBlizzard Entertainment
PlatformsPC, Mac, Android, iOS
Where To BuyBlizzardGoogle PlayApp StoreAmazon
Release DateMarch 2014
Nathaniel Mott
Freelance News & Features Writer

Nathaniel Mott is a freelance news and features writer for Tom's Hardware US, covering breaking news, security, and the silliest aspects of the tech industry.