The recently unveiled Hearthstone expansion Fractured in Alterac Valley pits the Alliance and the Horde against each other once again, this time on a snow-covered battlefield fought over by the Frostwolf clan and the Stormpike guard. World of Warcraft players may remember it as the place where they once cultivated 200 storm crystals so they could summon the war’s oldest known as Ivus the Forest Lord to Strifemarken – and now Ivus is back, in Hearthstone form.
“The frost wolves have pushed us back!” says Blizzard. “Quickly collect crystals from fallen enemies to bring them to Archdruid Renferal. She can use them to enchant Ivus, the Forest Lord! The more crystals you collect, the stronger he will be, so do not hesitate! The wave of battle must turn to our benefit. For the Alliance! “
What this means in the game is that for a prize of 1 Mana, you get a 1/1 minions with a Battlecry that blows all your remaining Mana, each point spent on giving + 2 / + 2, Rush, Divine Shield or Taunt on random. There’s an obvious synergy with another card from the set that has already been revealed: Wildheart Guff, a legendary 5 cost Druid Hero that increases your maximum Mana to 20. Play Ivus once you’ve got 20 Mana points, and you will potentially annoy your opponent.
In addition to bringing back old partner Ivus, the new expansion will ask players to choose between the Alliance and the Horde. The choice determines which quests you get and completing them earns Honor Points. The faction with the most points of honor at the end of the launch event decides which of two golden legends will be awarded for free: Drek’Thar for the Horde; Water Stormpike for the Alliance. However, everyone gets free, whether your team won or lost.
Fractured in Alterac Valley is coming out on December 7th, and the battle for Honor Points runs until January 11th.