Hearthstone won’t “necessarily” have cross-platform play for launch

hearthstone_cross_platform_play

We’ve been a bit spoilt for inter-iThing/PC functionality these last couple of years. While Microsoft and Sony umm and ahh over the idea of coupling arms with their competitors, we’ve been able to start a game of Frozen Synapse from the study, let our opponent ponder their turn while we lock up the house, and respond to their tactical meanderings once we’re sat comfortably on the bus.*

Consequently I’d sort of assumed the same treatment was due for Hearthstone, Blizzard’s tight tactical card game for PC and iPad. But the man in charge doesn’t sound quite so sure.

“We sure think that’s important and we are actively working on it, but it’s not trivial,” Blizzard Director of Special Projects Hamilton Chu told our Tim at Gamescom.

“I will say we’ve done it – a PC has played with an iPad in the studio, it has happened – but we’re not promising it for launch necessarily.”

That’s quite a surprise. PC players downloading the game on iPad for the first time are going to want to play with their usual sparring partners, and have learned to feel disappointed when they can’t.

Let’s hope Hearthstone is cross-functional enough to track its various progression metrics between platforms. The game is built around a comprehensive deck-building system that encourages players to carefully curate and revise their loadouts between battles. Will they have to leave those behind when playing away from home too?

*Hypothetically, at least. I get car sick.