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Hearthstone's Goblins vs Gnomes cards teased

Spectator mode also confirmed for the smash-hit collectible card game.

Twenty of the 120 or so new cards planned for Goblins vs Gnomes, the first expansion set for Blizzard's card game Hearthstone, have been revealed over at the game's official website.

Random effects are very much the order of the day for the fresh batch of cards, with Gnomes packing plenty of both good and not-so-good mechanical inventions, and Goblins favouring more accidentally explosive cards on the battlefield.

We're particularly taken with V-07-TR-0N, a card created through the destruction of three other mechanical minions, and packing a new Mega-Windfury mechanic which allows the card to inflict damage four times in a single turn.

In addition to the roster of new cards, Goblins vs Gnomes will also add a spectator mode to the game. As long as your friends have enabled the option, you'll be able to jump in and watch their finest moments, not to mention their most embarrassing mis-plays.

The heavy reliance on randomised effects in the Goblins vs Gnomes expansion has caused some concern amongst those who dislike the unpredictable elements of Hearthstone's gameplay.

At a dedicated Hearthstone panel at BlizzCon this evening, Blizzard's Ben Brode was keen to dispel the notion that Hearthstone was a game dependant on luck rather than skill, pointing instead to the game's ability to create player stories, as well as unique scenarios that demand a high level of skill to negotiate.

Lead designer Eric Dodds took a similar position, describing the team's love for the concept of "delightful surprise" as a cornerstone of the game's development.

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John Bedford


John is a freelance writer based in West Sussex.