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Set and Gem Rotation

Jul 29, 2016

Ben Stoll here to give you the scoop on how HEX plans to handle Set rotation, Gem rotation, and the related phenomenon of multiple constructed formats.

Let’s get to it!

THE PLAN

I’m going to start by broadly describing the changes that will occur to the Standard constructed format with Hex’s next few set releases. Then, I will go into more detail and discuss why we plan on doing things this way and what it means for HEX.

RELEASE OF SET 5 AND GEM ROTATION

When HEX’s fifth set is released, it will simply be added to HEX’s Standard constructed format. We will then have a total of five sets legal for Standard constructed play.

However, with the release of HEX’s fifth set, we will additionally see new gems introduced and all of HEX’s current gems will rotate out of Standard constructed and into our new Immortal constructed format (more on that below). While we won’t always be rotating all of the gems with each rotation, in the case of set 5’s release you will have 20 brand new gems.

At the same time gems rotate out of Standard and into Immortal, they will also rotate out of Campaign formats (Note that cards will NOT rotate out of Campaign – more on that later). So Hex’s first gem rotation will occur with set 5’s release, and from then on every “odd” set (meaning HEX’s 7th, 9th, 11th, etc. sets) will cause Gems to rotate out.

Note that while our first rotation of gems will cause all of the gems to rotate, we will not necessarily be rotating every gem out of Standard with every Gem rotation (some gems may be allowed to stick around for another cycle). You may even see the return of older gems eventually.

RELEASE OF SET 6 AND SET ROTATION

When HEX’s sixth set is released, our first two sets (Shards of Fate and Shattered Destiny) will forever rotate out of Standard constructed and into our “Immortal” constructed format.

So Hex’s first set rotation will occur with set 6’s release, and from then on every “even” set (meaning HEX’s 8th, 10th, 12th, etc. sets) will cause the oldest two sets to rotate out.

Remember, while the oldest two legal card sets will rotate out upon the release of every even set as just described, socketing gems will rotate out every odd set.

Note that the champions of a given set rotate exactly the same way cards in that set do.

To summarize everything you’ve read thus far, here is the progression of legal sets and gems for HEX’s Standard Format for the next few set releases:

CURRENT FORMAT:

Shards of Fate
Shattered Destiny
Armies of Myth
Primal Dawn

FORMAT AFTER SET 5 RELEASE

Shards of Fate
Shattered Destiny
Armies of Myth
Primal Dawn

Set 5 (gems rotate)

FORMAT AFTER SET 6 RELEASE

Shards of Fate
Shattered Destiny

Armies of Myth
Primal Dawn

Set 5
Set 6

FORMAT AFTER SET 7 RELEASE

Shards of Fate
Shattered Destiny

Armies of Myth
Primal Dawn

Set 5
Set 6
Set 7 (gems rotate)

FORMAT AFTER SET 8 RELEASE

Shards of Fate
Shattered Destiny
Armies of Myth
Primal Dawn

Set 5
Set 6
Set 7
Set 8

Note that when a set rotates out of Standard, HEX will no longer sell those packs in our store! While many of the cards that rotate out will likely lose some market value due to no longer being eligible for Standard, it is worth noting for collectors that some cards from these sets may later significantly increase in value due to their eventual relative scarcity, especially if they prove to be powerful cards in our Immortal constructed format.

Also note that, although we won’t be selling packs that have rotated out in the store anymore, it is likely that in the future there will still be some very limited opportunities for players to access cards from rotated sets.

IMMORTAL CONSTRUCTED FORMAT

While eventually there may be so many sets released that we have a need for more than two Constructed formats, for now every set that rotates out of Standard will simply become a part of our Immortal constructed format. Since sets will never leave Immortal constructed, eventually this format will become quite large.

This format will come into existence with HEX’s sixth set, the same time that our first set rotation occurs.

Note that in addition to all PvP card sets, all PvP champions and socketing gems will also always be legal in this format.

As time goes on, Immortal will come more and more into its own identity in the Hex spectrum of experience, be a format in which you can always access your favorite cards from the past, and grant a depth of exploration for deckbuilding that is nearly infinite with all of the card, champion and gem combinations available.

WHY WE WANT A STANDARD CONSTRUCTED FORMAT

Thus far, HEX has only had a need for one Constructed PVP format, Standard. The card pool for this format has purely gotten larger with each set release. However, at some point it is ideal for older sets to “rotate out” of this format to ensure that we always have a Constructed format that keeps things fresh and allows new cards and decks to step into the spotlight and be explored.

Standard will always feature either four or five legal sets at a time. We think that a rotating cardpool of this size will make for a fun and deeply explorable deckbuilding experience, while still offering some structure and definition in what you can expect from the metagame. Cards will have a good deal of time to shine in Standard, but they’ll also rotate into Immortal soon enough to allow future cards to enjoy their own large share of Standard’s total context.

It’s also worth noting that HEX’s constructed competitive scene in particular seeks to reward core players who devote time to analyzing and gaining familiarity with a new batch of cards and a new uncertain metagame. To serve this goal, we want a competitive constructed format that embraces HEX’s most “current” sets and features a rapidly evolving metagame, one which is heavily redefined by each new set release and presents new challenges and context to the players on a continual basis. For this reason, you can expect to see a greater competitive emphasis on our Standard format than on our Immortal format.

CAMPAIGN AND SET ROTATION

All current and planned Campaign content will be aligned with Immortal Constructed rules, save that Campaign will use Standard gems instead.

LIMITED PLAY

Limited Play (Evo Sealed, Draft) will remain as is.

You can still expect each draft format to follow the same progression it follows now across each two-set chapter: First, the odd (or “first”) set in the chapter is exclusively featured. Then the even (or “second”) set in the chapter is paired with the first set and assumes a majority of the emphasis.

SUMMARY

The planned pattern for HEX rotation is that every odd set release will rotate out socketing gems and that every even set release will rotate out the oldest two card sets. When gems or a card set rotate out of Standard, they will be added forever to our Immortal constructed format. Campaign for the foreseeable future will line up with our Immortal format, with the exception that it will only allow for Standard legal socketing gems.

We put a lot of time and consideration into this rotation plan, and we hope you’ll enjoy HEX for many sets to come under this model!

Ben Stoll

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