The final panel for this year's BlizzCon's Hearthstone coverage is all about how the team told a year-long story. The Panel has concluded.

Panel Recap

The panel hosts are Dave Kosak (Mission Team), Pat Nagle (Live Content Team), and Jeramiah Johnson (Cinematics Director).

  • Dave has been on the team for 3 years now!
  • They've had the idea of doing a year-long story for a few years now.
  • Should Rafaam be the villain? Nah, we've already defeated him. But no, everyone loves a good villain and seeing them come back.
  • There is an easter egg in the Kobolds & Catacombs comic with Rafaam crowing King Togwaggle. They knew they wanted to do a big story.
  • Madame Lazul didn't even have a name when we first saw her during the Whispers of the Old Gods.
  • They had a lot of fun bringing back old characters and creating content with them.
  • Dr. Boom is one of Kosak's favourites because he was such a minor character in WoW but the community made him Legendary.
  • Having multiple villains gave them plenty of personalities to play around with.
  • One theme we always see is how smart Rafaam is and how his friends... aren't quite there.
  • They had fun teasing the villains at the start of the year through the tarot cards Lazul handled.
  • The music for Hearthstone really started in Goblins vs Gnomes - the first big expansion.
  • One of live content's big jobs is to make sure there is stuff going on all year between expansions.
  • The whole year being themed together helped the live content team make more thematic events to further the story.
  • Henchmania was an introduction into the year - you were interviewing for the League of EVIL. Lots of fun.
  • A fun part of the Henchmania brawl was seeing henchmen making it into the solo adventure.
  • They used the Blackrock Crash brawl to explain how the team got over to Uldum, another fun bit of story to mix the expansions together.
  • A few years ago when Hearth and Home was pitched, Jeramiah planted cinematics team members throughout the entire dev team as the team sat together to listen to the pitch.
  • The plants from the cinematics team would get up and sing different parts of the song, engaging the whole dev team.
  • "Just dumb enough" was the bar they went for the Saviors of Uldum cinematic, considering the 80s theme.
  • What's better than Reno riding on a camel? Two camels while doing the splits and flexing - twice!
  • It was a big risk to make a large, year-long story. They didn't want people to not be interested in the expansions because they didn't play them all.
  • By making each expansion a standalone theme within the overall year, that helped make it less risky for those less engaged with the story.
  • For those that are really engaged with Hearthstone, they made sure there were lots of little things throughout the year.
  • George and Karl was a successful moment for the team when George first debuted without Karl. It lead to lots of questions about where he was.
  • The live content team likes to bring characters back so we can learn more about them and actually play with them.
  • They're going to tell a story of how the League of EVIL and League of Explorers get over to Northrend.
  • Reno isn't the best mage, so his portal making ability is not great, leading towards a fun journey to Northrend.
  • They really wanted the best flying battle in their Descent of Dragons cinematic. "If it flys, it fights!"
  • They plotted out the entire year - Bad Guys, Good Guys, then the Fight.
  • They weren't sure how to conclude the year and it was quite a scramble to figure out the ending.
  • A new solo adventure will come out in January, and they're going back to the linear format instead of dungeon run, to tell the story.
Hearthstone's Musical Moments - A History
  • Jeramiah had the idea of incorporating a jingle or song everyone could singalong to.
  • Blizzard's culture before Hearthstone launched was very much about big, epic moments. Hearthstone didn't really fit that, it was "the cute sibling".
  • Jeramiah's most terrifying career moment was pitching the GVG music idea to Chris Metzen.
  • Metzen's office was huge back then with a lounge - nerve-wracking! 
  • Jeramiah began emptying his pockets - can't make a pitch with full pockets - and he committed hard to the pitch. Don't stop no matter what happens.
  • Jeramiah began singing and was cut off immediately. Chris put his face into his hands. "I'm so getting fired after this"
  • Metzen raised his head and said he loved it. That's the story of how we got the fun musical themes in Hearthstone.

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