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Frost Ring Arena Patch Overview

Mar 10, 2015

This latest patch is a big feature update, introducing new ways to play and improving many other parts of the game. Here’s an overview of the good stuff coming with the Frost Ring Arena patch – read the patch notes here.

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Frost Ring Arena


This patch’s premier feature is Hogarth’s Frost Ring arena as the community’s first taste of PVE. There are over 20 different champions and 6 different bosses to fight as you try to survive gladiatorial combat. Players can head here to earn both equipment and exclusive PVE cards. There’s no limit on how many times you can play, so prepare for combat!

Equipment

With over 600 cards to collect, HEX is the deepest and most creative digital TCGs out there. Now we’re introducing over 150 pieces of equipment that open up countless more strategies.

Gloves of the Archmage (uncommon)

Each of your cards named Archmage Wrenlocke have, “When Archmage Wrenlocke enters play, put an action from your graveyard into your hand.”

Wrenlocke’s Chestplate (legendary)

Each of your cards named “Archmage Wrenlocke have “When you play an action Archmage Wrenlocke gets +1 ATK / +1 DEF.”

You can now win equipment in the Arena and use it to buff your decks in PVE content. If you have equipment in your stash from Wheels of Fate, that gear is now available for use as well. You place equipment onto your deck’s champion in the Card Manager screen and save it. Once you get into the Arena, you’ll see that your cards now have the rules text buffs from your equipment. If you’re looking for an in-depth feature on using equipment, see our Equipment Guide.

PVE Cards

HEX now has many PVE-only cards. You can identify PVE-only cards by the gold treatment on the card name.

Scarcliff Chimera

These cards can be either exclusive to opposing AI decks or available to you as loot for defeating bosses. When building the arena decks, sometimes the theme of the deck isn’t completely served by PVP cards, or we just want that opponent to feel special. It makes sense that these bosses would have different, at times more powerful cards than you, so watch out for those AI-only cards. There are some big advantages to providing PVE only cards to players as well. Since you’re beating up on the computer with these cards and the computer doesn’t mind getting rolled by crazy cards, this allows us to create designs that are sometimes dominant, sometimes wacky, but always fun. If you want to see all the player-owned PVE cards and equipment currently available in the game, check out the PVE card list and equipment list.

Sleeves

We have some new sleeves for you to win as well in the Arena!

Frost Ring – For your first successful run as a gladiator, you’ll receive this sleeve.

Frost Ring Undefeated – You didn’t lose a single match, so you get a special reward.

Urunaaz – If you are lucky enough to fight Urunaaz and win, you’ll get this sleeve to show your history as a dragonslayer. May they sing songs of your victory for generations to come.

Chat

As outlined in a previous update, we’ve completely redone the Chat tool with a modern look and the functionality you want. You can now easily navigate between your different chat windows and create your own private chat channels. We’re now going to work out creating pixel portraits and emotions for your chat as we outlined in our chat guide.

Now, to answer some questions you may have about the latest patch.

Can I open Chests?

Though we packed many new features and big improvements into this latest update, chests didn’t make it into this patch. We’re making good progress and you will see them in a future feature patch. Unfortunately, for now, they’re still locked though you can continue to use Wheels of Fate on them as normal.

As a Dungeon Crawler, do I earn extra loot in Arena?

The 100% loot bonus is not currently in the game. We hope to have this in within the next two weeks. Once this is implemented, whenever a Dungeon Crawler would receive an arena loot chest from an Arena boss, he or she would receive two loot chests. [Edit: A previous version of this announcement incorrectly informed players that the loot bonus would not apply to Arena. We apologize deeply for the confusion.]

Can I use Mercenaries?

Like chests, Mercenaries didn’t make it into this feature patch. We’ll have an update on that feature once we are closer to implementing it.

Which Cards Have Equipment?

The Arena offers a mix of equipment to support Shards of Fate, Shattered Destiny, and Arena PVE reward cards. Each card has 1 to 2 pieces of equipment. You can see a list of the cards that currently have equipment available here. Cards that have equipment that is not currently available will have that gear added to the game sometime in the future.

What changes have been made to Gold and what can I buy with it?

When we announced gold would be awarded in PVP, we also stated that this was only a temporary measure because there was no way for players to earn gold and spin the Wheels of Fate. Now that gold is available in Arena, we’ve removed gold from PVP. We’ve also reduced the gold earned in Starter Trials. Currently, you can use your gold to spin the Wheels of Fate and to buy items in the auction house. We will introduce some new items for purchase with gold in the near future.

Are Kickstarter rewards being distributed?

Knight backers and above will receive their Replicator’s Gambit equipment The Mirrorblade today on patch day. The remaining individual cards and equipment (like Wrath of Zakiir) outlined in each tier are not available yet in HEX, but we will send those pieces out as they come into the game. Dragon Lord and above will receive their respective copies of PVE cards and equipment that they are due. For those backers who qualify for random legendaries and rares, we will distribute those rewards once the pool of equipment is larger and more of your favorite cards have equipment in-game.

Can I use all my cards in Arena?

The R&D team’s number one goal is to provide an amazing and fun play experience. We want you to use your cards. But, sometimes a card is so powerful that it warps the way in which people feel that they can play the game. What may be a perfectly reasonable PVP design may be game-breaking in PVE. So, a very small amount of cards will be left out of the format.

For TCG tournament players, banned lists are something you’re likely already familiar with. For those who are not, the banned list lists cards that are not valid for specific modes of play—in this case, PVE. This is because we promised that we would not change PVP cards once they were released into the wild (unless that change is due to a bug, obviously).

This isn’t about banning “the best card.” That’s not how the HEX team works. Again, our overall goal is to provide a fun experience and rewarding players for finding awesome combos, synergies, and strategies is part of that. We want players to feel they have choices, not that they’re forced into a specific strategy or card due to the overwhelming strength of that single option compared to all other options. We also don’t want to have PVE restricted by what we’ve designed for PVP. PVE is this incredible space for HEX to innovate the traditional TCG and a place where we can be bold with designs that don’t have to take the opponent’s experience into account. The computer doesn’t have feelings—yet, at least. We want to take advantage of the design opportunities provided by a digital game and provide you compelling single-player gameplay that explores that space. We just can’t maximize the fun if we tried to develop a card for both PVE and PVP, so that’s why we have a banned list in a similar way as to why PVE cards aren’t legal for PVP tournaments.

There are currently only two cards on the banned list: Subtle Striker and Curse of Oblivion. Subltle Striker can trivialize some Arena battles and, if allowed in the format, would warp Arena such a way where all the top performing decks would include the troop. In arena, champion powers are a significant piece in giving each opponent a distinct feel and strategy. To remove that would remove a core piece of the Arena experience. Curse of Oblivion is a little less obvious, but it can cripple some decks in the PVE experience that may break the traditional deckbuilding rules, especially the 4-of rule.

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