If you’ve been anxiously awaiting your turn to play Hearthstone, the new free-to-play digital card game from World of Warcraft developer Blizzard, now’s your chance. The fast-paced strategy game plays like a simplified yet strategically challenging Magic: The Gathering, and it’s available for your Mac immediately.
The game is free to download from the Hearthstone website, and will install easily and quickly to your Mac.
Once downloaded, you’ll hop in-game for a quick couple of tutorials, and then you can either play AI opponents to hone your skills and learn the various hero classes, or you can jump right in to playing other human beings via Blizzard’s Battle.net game matching service, one of the most robust around.
There are nine classes in the game, including Mage, Priest, Druid, Rogue, Shaman, Hunter, Paladin, Warrior and Warlock–each with their own advantages and play styles. The Mage uses magic-based destructive spells while the Priest is a healer class, ready to keep his minions alive with his own magic. Each match plays quickly, and you’ll level up your characters, earning currency and new cards to stock your deck with.
Ultimately, you’ll customize your own hero deck, adding in powerful cards that you can both earn and purchase. The cards you buy are randomized, so there’s no direct pay-to-win feature, making Hearthstone a fantastic way to jump into the collectible card battle game genre.
Even though the game is just out of beta, Blizzard is continuing to make changes to help keep players interested and games balanced with a new patch that also adds new reward incentives and a re-connect feature to keep those card matches going even when your network connection has a moment of down time.
If you’ve ever been interested in these kinds of games, but felt that the cost of entry was just too high in terms of learning curve and cost, Hearthstone is a great place to start. Head on over to the Hearthstone web page and get playing.