Hearthstone’s latest patch brings changes to the auxiliary game modes as Murder in Castle Nathria nears

The game is almost afoot.

Image via Blizzard Entertainment

Arriving on July 26, Hearthstone’s 24.0 update comes with many goodies for Battlegrounds and Mercenaries enthusiasts, with a sprinkling of Duels changes added to the mix. A couple of new quality-of-life features are also included—but most importantly, it’s all eyes on Aug. 2, the date when the new Constructed expansion goes live.

The launch of the new expansion is almost upon us, and the developers have made a couple of small changes to make the new content even more enticing. Returning players can now get the offered rewards more than once as long as they’ve been away for more than 120 days. Those looking to quickly open a ton of packs will also be happy to hear that it is now possible to hold down Space to continuously open them. The expansion also brings along a refreshed Rewards Track for those looking for a fresh new grind for shiny new rewards.

Battlegrounds: Small changes with a big impact

Battlegrounds players will also have a fresh new metagame to enjoy, courtesy of Heistbaron Togwaggle, a new hero with a nine-gold Hero Power called The Perfect Crime. It reads “Steal all minions in Bob’s Tavern. Each turn, your next Hero Power costs (1) less,” with the cost resetting to nine with each use.

There are a couple of other small adjustments coming with the patch. The Lich King, Sneed, and Edwin VanCleef can now all target minions in Bob’s Tavern as well, opening up additional possibilities. Red Whelp now has two attack and two health, and Evolving Chromawing has also returned to the pool, with a 1/1 body and a completely reworked text: “After you Upgrade your Tavern Tier, gain +1/+1 for each friendly Dragon.”

There are also six new emotes to check out, themed after the murder mystery that forms the core of the expansion’s storyline.

Mercenaries: A tentacly new event and many adjustments

Another limited-time event has been added to Mercenaries, this one revolving around C’Thun. The Old God itself is now a collectible Mercenary alongside Sir Finley, and the developers also made wide-ranging adjustments to 33 different characters, which you can check out in detail in the 24.0 patch blog post.

Duels and Arena players also get some breadcrumbs

Darius Crowley is a new Duels hero with a similar toolkit from his adventures in The Witchwood. Unsurprisingly, his gameplay revolves around the cannons he mans. Here are his Hero Powers and signature treasures:

Darius Crowley’s Hero Powers

  • Fire! (Two mana) – Fire your Cannons! If they kill any minions, refresh this.
  • Fire Away! (Two mana) – Fire your Cannons! Give your minions +1 Attack.
  • Fire at Thee! (Three mana) – Fire your Cannons twice!

Darius Crowley’s Signature Treasures

  • Safe Harbor (two mana spell): Choose a minion and put it into your hand. It costs (zero).
  • Grizzled Reinforcement (six mana 4/3 minion): Battlecry: Summon an extra Cannon.
  • Tuskarr Raider (four mana 3/9 Pirate): Rush. After this minion attacks, fire your Cannons.
  • Seabreaker Goliath (10 mana 15/15 Pirate): Costs (one) less for each time you’ve fired your Cannons.
  • Deck Swabbie (three mana 1/4 minion): At the end of your turn, fire your Cannons!
  • Draconic Munition (one mana spell): For the rest of the game, your cannons deal 1 extra damage.

New Passive Treasures have also been added to Duels, which are related to the new expansion’s content:

  • Location, Location, Location! (Pool one, Passive) – Start the game with a Location of your class in play.
  • Be Our Guest (pool one, Passive) – At the start of the game, shuffle 3 Legendary Invitations into your deck.
  • Brittle Bones (pool two, Passive) – After you destroy a minion with a spell, summon a Volatile Skeleton.
  • Ring of Haste (pool two Ultra Rare, Passive) – Passive. Every third minion you cast each turn costs (one).

The Duels card pool has seen marginal changes with this patch. Twig of the World Tree, Genn Greymane, Baku the Mooneater, Prince Renathal, Open the Waygate and Blackwald Pixie are banned, while Lightning Bloom is legal again. Additionally, Plaguebringer has been removed from the passive treasure pool.

Though there were no direct changes made to Arena, the blog post has also revealed the list of sets available in the draft pool once the latest expansion goes live:

  • Core
  • One Night in Karazhan
  • Saviors of Uldum
  • Rastakhan’s Rumble
  • Scholomance Academy
  • Madness at the Darkmoon Faire
  • Murder at Castle Nathria