Tour the Mercenaries Village and Collection
When you enter the new Mercenaries mode, you will be taken to the Village. The Village is the central hub to all things Mercenaries, the place where you can manage your Mercenaries, prepare for Bounties, check the Task Board, and so much more. Here you can learn more about the Village, how to upgrade your Mercenaries, and what Mercenaries will be available at launch!
A Tour of the Village
First, let’s take a look at the sights in the Village.
The Workshop will be your first stop in the Village. Actually, when you first enter the Village, it will be the only stop! At the Workshop, you can build out and upgrade all the other locations in the Village. Upgrading locations gives them a new look and improves their functionality. Some upgrades unlock additional features, whereas others allow for more efficiency. All Village upgrades are persistent, so you’ll be able to watch your Village grow and flourish as you play.
The Tavern is where your Mercenaries rest and relax when they’re not out chasing a Bounty. Think of it like your Mercenaries Collection Manager. From the Tavern, you can craft Mercenaries, browse your collection of Mercenaries, select from any cosmetic options for them, upgrade their Abilities and Equipment, or throw them together to form a Party!
The Travel Point is your access to Bounties across Azeroth for Mercenaries PVE gameplay. From here, you can pick a Zone and then a Bounty to hunt within that Zone. The Bounties unlock sequentially within a Zone and each has a suggested level and predetermined Bounty Boss, so you have some idea what you’re getting yourself into. After you upgrade your Travel Point, you will also be able to unlock the Heroic difficulty, which will make Bounties much more challenging! We also have plans to continue adding to the Travel Point in future updates for even more challenges.
You can learn more about collecting Bounties in the Gameplay blog.
Once you’ve collected a few Bounties, you can head to the Fighting Pit for a different kind of combat! In the Fighting Pit, you are always paired against a similarly-powerful team of Mercenaries, even when trying out one of your new, under-leveled Mercenaries. Gameplay is also a little different in the Fighting Pit than it is while hunting Bounties because you can’t see what moves your opponent is locking in. Compete in the Fighting Pits to complete achievements, get rewards, and even push for a spot on the leaderboard!
The Merchant Cart is your shortcut to the Mercenaries-specific part of the in-game shop. From there, you can get Mercenaries Packs, Mercenaries Coins, and any seasonal or personal offers that might be available to you. Mercenaries Packs are a great way to grow your collection! Each Mercenaries Pack offers five Mercenaries items, which can include new Mercenary Cards, Mercenary Coins, or Mercenary Portraits.
The Mailbox is where you will receive in-game announcements about Hearthstone’s Mercenaries mode. Check in regularly to see what kinds of special events and offers you can take advantage of!
And last, but certainly not least, the Campfire. The Campfire is where your Mercenaries can sit, relax, and trade stories about glorious Bounties you’ve claimed with them. Functionally, the Campfire houses the Task Board. The Task Board is similar to your Quest Log or Achievements tab in the Journal. Once a day, Mercenaries will come sit by the Campfire and put up a new task for you to complete. Once you have completed the task, return to the Campfire to claim your reward. Those rewards can include Mercenary Coins, Mercenaries Packs, or Equipment for a particular Mercenary. Even after you’ve completed your dailies, there will be ways to get more tasks in your Village, so check back often to make sure you don’t miss anything!
Managing Your Collection
Now that you’ve taken a tour of the Village, let’s head back to the Tavern for a more in-depth look at the Mercenaries collection system.
When you first enter the Tavern, you’ll notice that your Mercenaries are organized into three sections, called Roles, each with a corresponding color. Red Mercenaries are called Protectors; green Mercenaries are called Fighters; and blue Mercenaries are called Casters. Each tends to have different strengths and weaknesses and play a different role in your Parties.
You’ll also notice your existing Mercenaries Parties and a button to create a new Party on the right side—similar to your decks and deck slots in the Collection Manager. If you create a new Party, or select an existing Party, you can edit it by dragging Mercenaries to or from the collection, just like building a deck.
You can learn more about what each of the Roles entail, and strategies for building a good Party, in the Gameplay Blog.
Selecting a particular Mercenary will also give you lots of information and options for that Mercenary, like their stats, Abilities, Equipment, and Portraits (alternate cosmetic art options) you’ve obtained.
* Mercenaries is still in development and all stats and effects are subject to change. The Card Library will be updated when Mercenaries launches on October 12 to represent any updated versions.
Abilities unlock automatically as you level up the Mercenary; Equipment is unlocked by completing Achievements and tasks related to that Mercenary; and Mercenary Portraits can be obtained from Mercenaries Packs. A Mercenary has access to all their earned Abilities each fight, but has to choose one piece of Equipment to wear. You can set your Mercenary’s Portrait and Equipment from this screen.
Finally, from here you can spend Mercenary Coins to upgrade any Abilities or Equipment you have. Within the Tavern, you can also use Mercenary Coins to craft Mercenaries you don’t already own.
Growing Your Roster
Mercenaries will launch with over 50 Mercenaries! To start out with, all players will receive 8 Mercenaries just for completing the Mercenaries prologue missions. In completing your early adventures, you will also amass some Mercenary Coins and some Mercenaries Packs. These are the two main in-game methods for receiving new mercenaries.
Mercenary Coins are earned throughout the Mercenaries mode, including from completing tasks and Bounties. Each Mercenary Coin is specific to that particular Mercenary and can then be redeemed in the Tavern to craft that Mercenary if you don’t own it, or upgrade their Abilities or Equipment if you do. Mercenaries Packs can also be earned or purchased, and include 5 Mercenaries items, which can include new Mercenary Cards, Mercenary Coins, or Mercenary Portraits. Each Mercenaries Pack includes at least one new Mercenary Card until you own all Mercenaries of that rarity tier. You can learn more about the details of Mercenaries Packs here.
From time to time, there will also be various offers in the in-game store. These can include standalone Mercenary purchases, deals on packs, options for Coins, and bundles combining a few Mercenaries items. There are also three exciting pre-purchase options that are available from now until Mercenaries launches!**
Diablo, The Lich King, and Sylvanas each have their own special pre-purchase bundles if you want to kickstart your Mercenaries collection. These bundles will give you a huge swath of Mercenaries to play with right out the gate! Don’t worry if you can’t get all three, Diablo, Sylvanas, and the Lich King are here to stay and will be obtainable in-game through packs and crafting after launch.
(NEW) Frequently Asked Questions
With an entirely new way to play, it’s understandable that you might have questions about how everything will work when Mercenaries launches on October 12. We’ve listened to community feedback and have prepared some answers to your most common questions:
Q: How much does Hearthstone Mercenaries cost?
A: Mercenaries is completely free to play! Each Mercenary Card and Mercenary Portrait can be unlocked through regular play. You get eight free Mercenaries for completing the introductory missions, which is more than enough to form a Party powerful enough to complete all Mercenaries Bounties! You’ll also earn Mercenaries, Mercenary Packs, and Mercenary Coins as you play through the mode to unlock many more characters for your roster. For instance, each Mercenary you own will give you a series of Campfire tasks over time. The rewards for completing each Mercenary’s Campfire task chain include 3 packs and over 1500 total Mercenary Coins split between your mercs and random mercs you don’t yet own! There will be 51 Mercenaries at launch, so that amounts to 153 Mercenary Packs and over 76,500 Mercenary Coins just for completing all the Campfire tasks.
For players who want to invest in their Mercenaries experience, the Mercenaries Shop will also dynamically update over time to offer items based on how you play and what you like to buy. Whether you plan to collect all the different Mercenary Cards you can, hunt Mercenary Portraits, or just focus on a few favorite mercs, you can check back often to see what the shop has for you.
Q: Is Hearthstone Mercenaries part of the Book of Mercenaries?
A: No, Hearthstone Mercenaries is a new mode that combines RPG and roguelike elements, while Book of Mercenaries is solo-content within Hearthstone’s traditional gameplay. The two modes have different gameplay and you do not need to play one before you play the other. That said, all your favorite Mercenary characters from Book of Mercenaries do appear in Hearthstone Mercenaries, alongside over 40 other iconic characters from the Warcraft universe!
Q: How many Mercenary Coins does it cost to craft a Mercenary you don’t own?
(UPDATED) A: Mercenary Coins are specific to each Mercenary. Those Mercenary Coins can be used to upgrade a Mercenary’s Abilities and Equipment, or to craft the Mercenary if you do not already own it. The cost to craft a Mercenary depends on the Mercenary’s rarity: 100 Coins for Rares, 300 Coins for Epics, and
600 500 Coins for Legendary Mercenaries.
Q: How do we get these Mercenary Coins?
A: You can get Mercenary Coins a number of ways, including from purchases, Mercenary Packs, Campfire tasks, Fighting Pit rewards, and Bounties. Each Bounty has a pool of Mercenary Coins that it pulls from more regularly, so returning to a Bounty that you’ve already beaten can be a good way to work towards a particular Mercenary you want.
Q: What’s in a Mercenaries Pack?
A: A Mercenaries Pack can be purchased for 100 Gold, like current Hearthstone packs. A Mercenaries Pack includes 5 Mercenaries items, which can include new Mercenary Cards, Mercenary Coins, or Mercenary Portraits. You are guaranteed one new Mercenary Card in each Mercenaries Pack until you have all Mercenaries of a rarity tier. The rates for Legendary and Epic Mercenary Cards are equivalent to the rates for Legendary and Epic cards in traditional Hearthstone packs. You can learn more details about Mercenaries Packs here.
Playing in Mercenaries will give you XP towards your rewards track, so you can earn Gold for your packs from playing.
Q: What are Mercenary Portraits?
A: Mercenary Portraits are alternative art options for a Mercenary, each reflecting a different stage of that character’s personal journey. Just like Golden and Diamond frames, there is no gameplay difference between different Portraits for the same Mercenary—they just let you customize how your squad represents you! Usually, when you first obtain a Mercenary, you will get their default Portrait. On rare occasions, you might get an alternate Portrait before you have received the default Portrait. When that happens, that Mercenary will become unlocked and playable with that Portrait, just like if it was the default.
Q: How long will it take to max my Mercenary’s level?
A: It depends on how you play. At launch, each Mercenary will be capped at level 30. Whenever you get a new Mercenary Card, that Mercenary will start at level 1. If you just stick with your starting team and play through Bounties as they unlock, we expect it to take less than 10 hours of gameplay to max level your starting Mercenaries. The Fighting Pit is also a pretty good source of experience, and can fully level a Party slightly quicker than playing through those first Bounties.
Later on, you’ll be able to stick new Mercenaries on the Bench and have them watch your more powerful Mercenaries take on tougher Bounties. Remember, all members of a Party get the same experience from fights, even if they don’t participate. Power-levelling like that could cut the leveling time drastically. Heroic Bounties offer 50% more experience than the normal versions, so things can get even quicker in late-game Mercenaries!
Q: Can players challenge each other to Mercenaries fights?
A: Yes! The Fighting Pits are open for friendly challenge like in Standard, Wild, and Battlegrounds. You’ll also be able to spectate your friends playing Mercenaries!
Q: What will the Mercenaries Leaderboard look like?
A: The leaderboard will show the top 200 Fighting Pit players, by their numerical ranks, based on their internal MMR, like the Standard and Wild leaderboards. Rating resets will happen once per month, while MMR will adjust over time, similar to the Standard and Wild internal MMR calculations.
Q: How often should we expect updates to Mercenaries?
A: We plan to make Mercenaries content part of our regular development cycle, with regular updates in most patches and at least one large update per expansion cycle, like Battlegrounds. We are really excited about what avenues this mode can open up to us for entirely new features down the line, too. Depending on how the mode and playerbase develop, we may adjust and re-prioritize our plans to best serve the overall Hearthstone community, just like we do with all the other modes.
Q: What is the balance adjustment philosophy for Mercenaries?
A: Mercenaries has a large PVE component and we don’t mind it if players find a way to beat up on the A.I. Even in the Fighting Pits, any power outliers can be smoothed out by our dynamic matchmaking that takes things like team power into account. For those reasons, we don’t anticipate balance changes being a major part of the Mercenaries development cycle. But, of course, if there are game-breaking or unintended interactions, we will make any changes necessary to correct them.
** Mercenaries pre-purchased items will not appear in-game until the mode launches on October 12. You will know that your pre-purchase has been confirmed by checking that the bundle has been marked as owned in the in-game shop.