The school year is starting all over the country. For Hearthstone, classes have been in session for a couple of weeks following the release of the Scholomance Academy expansion. However, the actual expansion is just a piece of the formula. Blizzard is ready to reveal what's next for Hearthstone and the upcoming 18.2 update is one that solo adventurers and Battlegrounds players will want to keep an eye on.
It's been almost a year since Blizzard debuted Battlegrounds, Hearthstone's take on the auto-battler genre. Next week, the game mode will receive one of its most requested features: Battlegrounds Parties. Eight players will now be able to queue into private lobbies to play their own round of Battlegrounds. This feature has been highly demanded by Hearthstone streamers, as well as by players with large friends lists, and it will debut on Tuesday, September 8.
That's not all for Battlegrounds. Three new Heroes will join the festivities. Look for Lord Barov, Jandice Barov, and Forest Warden Omu to become playable. We'll have more on these characters, including their Hero Powers, in the days ahead.
The next date to watch out for is Tuesday, September 15. That's when Hearthstone debuts its next single-player adventure and it's one that will work a little differently than past ones. The Book of Heroes will tell the stories of each of Hearthstone's ten core heroes. The first story will follow the Mage, Jaina Proudmoore. Players will relive some of the memorable events that led to her becoming the strong Mage that she is today. Complete Jaina's story and receive a special Mage pack, which will contain Mage cards from Standard. Subsequent Book of Heroes stories will release on a monthly basis, giving solo adventurers something to experience for the next ten months.
Shacknews has more on the Book of Heroes. Video Editor Greg Burke and I recently spoke to Hearthstone Senior Narrative Designer Valerie Chu about what players can expect from this solo experience. We'll have that interview in its entirety later this hour.
Lastly, it's been a while, but the Heroic Brawliseum is about to make its return. The weekly Tavern Brawl will be replaced with the Brawliseum, which challenges players to construct their best deck for an Arena-style format. Their Brawliseum run will continue until they rack up 12 wins or three losses. The more you win, the more rewards you get. The Heroic Brawliseum is set to return on Wednesday, September 23.
Hearthstone's 18.2 update is set to go out this Tuesday. If there are more details beyond the Brawliseum heroes, we'll make sure to return with updates. In the meantime, the Hearthstone website will have more information.