Iksar’s Twitter Q&A #41 Summary – Shifting Classic to “Rotating Format”, Wild-Only Set, Upgrading Cards to Golden, Tradeable in Core Set and more!

Dean “Iksar” Ayala is an Interim Game Director on the Hearthstone team, and he’s been doing regular Q&A sessions on Twitter for quite some time now. People have been asking lots of questions about the game’s balance, design, specific cards, mechanics, and so on. Sadly, Twitter is kind of a mess when it comes to such things. Messages are short, you have to create long threads if you want to talk about something in detail, lots of comments get hidden, and it just doesn’t flow right. To make it a bit easier for all of you, just like during the previous weeks, I went through all of his replies and decided to make a summary of his most important talking points.

Check out previous Q&A’s here!

If you want to read the full Q&A – all the questions and answers – here’s the Tweet you should go to:

Below, you will find my summary. It’s still pretty long, but Iksar tends to answer the questions thoroughly and includes a lot of details. I try to ignore “fluff” answers and not repeat points that have been already discussed in his recent Q&A’s, so if you want to learn more, go back to them. And if you want to read his full replies on all topics, check out the Tweet above. Things in parentheses are my own notes/comments and not Dean’s words. Let’s start:

  • They thought about shifting Classic format from “just Classic” to a “rotating format” in which only a select few sets are legal and they change over time. Apparently it’s a real consideration and not just discussion.
  • There’s an idea to make a new set using a lot of HS fan-favorite cards and some completely new Wild-exclusive cards to spice up the format, support old archetypes etc. Then it would be a great pack to buy for people wanting to get into the Wild format.
  • A feature that lets players upgrade regular cards to golden cards is coming.
  • Team likes Tradeable mechanic and considered adding some Tradeable cards to Core Set / making it evergreen, but they feel like having too much of that in Standard can hurt the experience. Especially since some Tradeable cards are just used as 1 mana card draw – like Persistent Peddler which was meant to support Deathrattle DH but it’s played in Questline decks instead with Tuskpiercer. But they wouldn’t be surprised if some more Tradeable cards were added to the future.
  • No plans to make players be able to move collections between servers, because the game is built in a way that making it possible for players would be incredibly dev-intensive. If it would be easier, they would have definitely made it possible.
  • All three expansions this year will have a standalone setting, with no connection between them.
  • No big Duels update planned in short-mid term, mostly smaller changes like what we’ve been seeing before this patch.
  • They still want to test the ability to temporarily ban a certain class on ladder – e.g. you pick a class that you 100% won’t face when queuing. But they need some more UI & engineering bandwidth to make that happen.
  • Core Set has two goals – teach new players about the game and give each class a baseline toolkit for different archetypes. Cards that are more straightforward and not very powerful are meant to accomplish the first goal.
  • They’d like to remake Battlegrounds home screen at some point and one of the changes would be a section with all the notifications & important news (like Armor changes, for example).
  • The philosophy behind Wild nerf reverts is to unnerf cards that could make Wild more fun – but “fun” is obviously subjective. (I would assume that if any card turns out ot be problematic it might get nerfed again – I feel like it might happen to Kael’thas.)
  • Most of the new shop entires are experiments – they’re trying to find out how much players are willing to pay for something. And so was the new Diamond Drek'Thar. But if something is too expensive, they will shift to what players are expecting and willing to pay.
  • Time traveling is a big thing in Warcraft universe and they might do more cards similar to Toki, Time-Tinker if they make an expansion based around Bronze Dragonflight.
  • Dean’s work process has changed after he became an Interim Game Director. He spends less time thinking about now, about design and expansions. Instead, he thinks more about the future, leadership and his team (which is, well, what a game director should do).


A Hearthstone player and writer from Poland, Stonekeep has been in a love-hate relationship with Hearthstone since Closed Beta. Over that time, he has achieved many high Legend climbs and infinite Arena runs. He's the current admin of Hearthstone Top Decks.

Check out Stonekeep on Twitter!

Leave a Reply


  1. 2asandab
    April 11, 2022 at 6:37 am

    And another thing…

    Banning classes is a terrible idea. If I could ban Druid right now my QL Hunter deck would probably be like an 80% WR.

  2. Inhiszton
    April 10, 2022 at 11:26 am

    “They thought about shifting Classic format from “just Classic” to a “rotating format” in which only a select few sets are legal and they change over time. Apparently it’s a real consideration and not just discussion.”

    This is entirely infuriating.

    Finally, FINALLY a format that allows you to collect and master all cards eventually, and climb to Legend consistently without the need to invest into it again, and again, and again… and then they come up with the idea making it to some random-changing madness, where you can’t even predict what will you need from the tons of old cards to be able to win at all.

    I hate this idea even more than that which was about adding Curse of Naxxramas to the classic pool – and that was unfair too, since you cannot buy the adventure with gold anymore.

    Sorry for the rage, but I just had to say it once.

    • LaBomba
      April 11, 2022 at 1:39 am

      I see it very similarly. Classic is a lot of fun for me and I can even build completely golden decks continuously. Any changes to the format, whether Naxx or changing sets, would destroy that. You are welcome to think about new formats, that is also desirable – but Classic should be kept as an independent area.

    • 2asandab
      April 11, 2022 at 4:38 am

      Foresight doesn’t seem to be a strong suit for the developers.

      One would expect a classic mode in a Digital CGC to have little popularity after its introduction. Their suggestion of a constructed arena mode will be more popular but defeats the purpose of the mode as you have accurately describe above.

      Just read the DH comment above. You didn’t think people would play a draw card in a draw based QL? Peddler is in DR DH but the deck itself is weaker than QL. This should be obvious.

      But despite all our my rage….
      : )

  3. WingedCastaway
    April 10, 2022 at 10:51 am

    Diamond Drek’thar feels like Blizz’s April Fools for how overpriced it is. I genuinely wonder what player is willing to pay so much for a skin of a somewhat lackluster card on top of it.

    • Stonekeep - Site Admin
      April 10, 2022 at 11:23 pm

      $5 feels like the right price for me, since we’re talking about a Legendary most of the players have the Golden version of anyway. So it’s not like we’re getting a new Legendary card + COSMETIC, it’s just the cosmetic part.

      Even if they would price it at $10 I would say that it’s too expensive… but $25? It does feel like a joke indeed.