It's time to enter the menacing dragon lair, daring adventurers! It has actually been only 3 weeks since the first big Hearthstone content release of 2022, and now we are ready to explore the second substantial update. Continuing the recent tradition, the 22.4 patch notes have been available since February 10, allowing us that early glimpse into everything that was to come. Since then, we've followed a short reveal season to see all the new cards from this Alterac Valley Mini-Set, and've learned quite a few interesting things. 

Not everything releases today, as certain bits and pieces - such as the special Mercenaries event - are set to go live in a week on February 22. We'll highlight and discuss some of the worthwhile aspects of this newest patch below.

Update: the patch should be out on all platforms now. Don't forget your favorite mobile device! If you've somehow managed to avoid updating to the new version thus far, you might still be able to work on your current Arena run to try and stop at 2 losses in order to collect a free Tavern Ticket while maximizing your rewards.


A Mysterious Achievement

A certain curious achievement has been spotted. You might recognize the familiar "???" marks from the previous two instances of the same kind: with Barrens Mysteries and Stormwind Mysteries, respectively. Do note that this one is not yet active. At least we've been given proper heads-up about it: 

Quote From Blizzard
ūüďĘ There is a Mysterious new achievement in the Gameplay > Alterac Valley section, however it is NOT achievable yet.

Stay tuned for updates on when this achievement is ready to be investigated!

We'll surely look more closely into it once that time comes! 

Meanwhile, enjoy your other achievement fix. And yes, apparently the Mini-Set achievements for Rogue and Demon Hunter are missing and won't be added until the next major patch.


Early Known Issues

The 22.4 Known Issues forum thread went up even earlier than usual, although at this point there isn't much of substance to be found there. Gotta give players a little more time to uncover and report those pesky bugs! Or, you know, maybe - hopefully - not for a change. 

Quote From Blizzard

Follow this post for information about known issues in Patch 22.4.

Patch 22.4 is launching with a few known issues:

  • If you buy the Golden Mini-Set, you will receive the pop-up notification that looks the same as the regular Mini-Set purchase. Don’t worry, this is visual only! You’ll still receive those sweet, sweet Golden cards in your collection.

  • There is a Mysterious new achievement in the Gameplay > Alterac Valley section! However, it is not achievable yet. Stay tuned for updates on when this achievement is ready to be investigated.

  • We received your bug reports about Tamsin’s Phylactery not working with Rustwix Envoy. The fix for that bug was not done in time to make it into this patch, but we expect it to come in the next major update.

We will use this post to track Patch 22.4 and update this post when we have new information to share.

We will keep you posted.


Diamond Card Reward for The Alliance's Honor Victory

We had to wait more than a month for this one, following the Alliance's success in the Battle for Alterac Valley, but your Diamond Vanndar Stormpike is finally here in the flesh. Head into your Collection to admire the animation in all its glory.

Quote From Blizzard
Remember, even though the battle for Alterac Valley is over, you still have until the end of the Fractured in Alterac Valley expansion cycle to complete your personal event quest chain.


Know When to Concede for Quest Progression

Finally, a small yet important Quality of Life change might make completing your Daily Quests just a little bit easier: 

Quote From Blizzard

  • There will now be a confirmation prompt when you attempt to concede a game before you would get quest progress for that game (like “Play 3 Games” Quests and the Alterac Valley Honor Quests). We have also loosened the requirements on counting those types of Quests.

We will gladly take it. 


Duels Unstuck and New Card Buckets

Early on in the previous patch 22.2's cycle, we've reported on a peculiar bug with Heroic Duels runs that caused players to become stuck, unable to collect their rewards and proceed with more games. Luckily, thanks to the Hearthstone community we've also found a quick mobile workaround to deal with this pesky issue. The problem escalated enough to warrant an official Blizzard response, discussing both the root cause and the solution at the time, while also promising a full fix to come with the patch 22.4. Well, now it's here. Let's hope that becomes successful and we won't have to worry about any further problems. If you couldn't complete the Duels part before, there is still time to run with your Lunar New Year Questline!

If you hope to see more dragons in Duels, you will be happy to learn about the new buckets straight from the man in charge: 

Quote From Tabayrak
Aside from new buckets that support the mini-set. Quite a few neutral dragon buckets have been added as well as a new type for mage "BIG SPELL." Buckets are under a bit of scrutiny from Brad and I. Mage felt like it needed a bucket for big spells that wasn't "More Spells."

Also let's not forget about that Treasure nerf for Infinite Arcane. We hear that Kazakusan might be occasionally misbehaving


Arena Rotation

Hope you've taken the chance to secure your Tavern Ticket refund, and perhaps get to put it to good use for this brand new pool of cards:

Quote From Blizzard

When Patch 22.4 launches on February 15, ongoing Arena runs will end and a new Arena season will begin. The eligible card sets will rotate so that the following sets will make up the Arena card pool:

  • Fractured in Alterac Valley
  • Fractured in Alterac Valley Onyxia’s Lair Mini-Set
  • One Night in Karazhan
  • Blackrock Mountain
  • Journey to Un’goro
  • Mean Streets of Gadgetzan
  • Descent of Dragons
  • Core
 

Did you miss Twin Tyrant raining fire and ice on your parade? We can't currently expect any micro-adjustments if things get out of hand, so it remains to be seen which classes end up on top in this rotation and for how long. Having good Dragon synergies might come in handy. 


Four New Mercenaries and Bounties

We won't get to see everything outright, but we're getting access to the bulk of new content today. Starting with 4 shiny Celestial Mercenaries: 


(Source 1) (Source 2)

Quote From Blizzard
Long’xin, Xuen, Niuzao, and Yu-lon will all be available through all normal ways of acquiring a Mercenary, starting on February 15.


And 4 Bounties to begin with, with 2 more opening up at a later date:

Quote From Blizzard

NEW BOUNTIES

HS_Patch_22p4_AVMercBounties_750x534_EK01.png

Six new Bounties will also be added to the Alterac Valley Zone:

  • Rotimer
  • Ichman
  • Balinda Stonehearth
  • Ivus
  • Vanndar Stormpike
  • Kazakus

The Vanndar Stormpike and Kazakus Bounties will be added to the game after the conclusion of the Chi-Ji event. All other Bounties will be added on February 15, with the launch of the patch.


Battlegrounds Heroes and Cosmetics

2 new Mercenaries and 1 evil Dragon are there for those with Battleground Perks. The rest of us will have to wait a couple weeks, as usual:

Varden Dawngrasp


Rokara


Onyxia


And in case you've missed these guys: 

Quote From Blizzard

  • Kael'thas, Silas Darkmoon, and Chenvaala have been returned to the Hero Pool.

Besides that, we've got the new pretty cosmetics: one new board (with another to come in a week) and brand new finisher animations.


Enter Onyxia’s Lair if You Dare

Last but not least, the Mini-Set for Alterac Valley is available for purchase, and the individual cards can also be found in this expansion's packs. Make your call! 

Quote From Blizzard
Lady Prestor and Kazakus have been pulling the strings from the shadows all year. But while they’ve been scheming, the mercenaries of the Horde and Alliance have grown stronger, and closer. Now these max-level heroes have formed a raiding party, and are charging headlong into Onyxia’s Lair. They’ll have to use all they learned this year to take down powerful Dragons and recover the fallen Naaru!

The Onyxia’s Lair Mini-Set, launching worldwide on February 15, consists of 35 distinct cards: 4 Legendary cards, 1 Epic card, 14 Rare cards, and 16 Common cards. Those new cards can be found in Fractured in Alterac Valley packs, or you can get the entire 66-card* Mini-Set for $14.99 or 2000 Gold! For the first time ever, we are also offering the option to buy an all-Golden set of all 66 Mini-Set cards for $69.99!

hs_22p4_OnyxiaRaid_GoldenBundle_760x344_EK02.png

Includes one copy of each Legendary card and two copies of each other card, for a full playable set of all cards in the Mini-Set.

Just beware - we've sent a little PSA on Twitter, in case you tend to click on things without double-checking: 

Quote From Out of Cards
Be careful, Onyxia's Lair is live but the default purchase is set to Golden! 

Switch to Normal on the side menu and if you want to pay with Gold instead of money, that option is there.


Enjoy the full content update of patch 22.4! Which game mode do you plan to jump into first?