As you might have heard by now, Death Knight is coming to Hearthstone as the eleventh playable class, starting from December 6 - and we already took the opportunity for an appropriate in-depth look at its mechanics. Besides all of the gameplay novelties that this introduction is bringing to the table, there is also the important cosmetic aspect to consider. As you might know, every playable Hearthstone class comes with a set of Hero portraits:
- Basic Hero portrait - available to everyone for free.
- Golden Hero portrait - the basic one, but with a lively animation, rewarded after winning 500 games with a class in Standard, Wild, Arena or Duels.
- Prestige Hero portrait - a totally different piece of art, rewarded after winning 1000 games with the class in Standard, Wild, Arena or Duels.
In case you’re curious about what Death Knight is going to receive, do not fret, as we’ve got you covered. Alex Horley, the incredible artist known for many, many masterpieces (Hearthstone-themed and otherwise), created both of the portraits for the upcoming Death Knight class - and they were included in Blizzard's press kit.
Death Knight Hero Portraits
Death Knight’s Basic and 500 wins portrait art.
This one is going to be available for free to everyone, starting from December 6th; however, it will take 500 wins to make it golden and therefore add the associated visual effects.
Death Knight’s 1000 wins portrait’s art.
We wonder how much time will have to pass before someone will be able to show it off on ladder.
New Cosmetics Already On the Way - Not Only For Death Knight?
While these two masterpieces aren't in the game yet, we already know that Death Knight is going to receive even more attention in the cosmetic section: as we've already mentioned, it will be the first class to receive a Legendary Hero Skin.
- Each skin is fully animated in 3D and responds to in-game actions with special animations. These can, for example, be triggered when attacking, playing minions, casting spells and emoting.
- These skins come with unique hero trays, which are more gilded than ever before.
- New voicelines will accompany every one of these fancy portrait frames.
This Arthas Legendary Skin will be available for pre-purchase as part of the Arthas Menethil Bundle, starting from November 8, but you'll still have time to grab it even after Patch 25.0 goes live.
Speaking of bundles, we wonder whether the Legendary skin you see above will be the only one purchasable. If you take a closer look at the aforementioned Blizzard's press kit for the upcoming March of the Lich King expansion, you'll notice that there's a file called:
"1025 25.0AnnounceBroll SylvanasPrologue ProRes GS 001"
It consists of a clip that almost certainly belongs to the Death Knight Prologue solo adventure (unlocking the class cards belonging to the Core Set) that we're going to be able to access for free with the launch of the March of the Lich King expansion.
As you can clearly see, the opponent is none other than Sylvanas Windrunner while she was still alive, before Arthas himself turned her into a Banshee. What's surprising is that Sylvanas' portrait has the same quality as Arthas'!
It's very difficult for us to believe that a skin which requires so much effort to create will exist only as part of the solo content. Of course, there's no say whether this cosmetic will appear together with Arthas or at a later time: the hope is that Blizzard will eventually give us an explanation!
What do you think about these Hero portraits? Are you going to attempt a Death Knight grind right off the bat? Let us know in the comments below!
Depending on how strong DK is I bet we see 1,000 win portraits quickly. I remember seeing an opponent with 1,000 win DH portrait less than two weeks into DH’s release.
Sheer madness: that is almost 100 wins a day!
If I remember correctly the player was MegaMog, who I used to see regularly on ladder, but haven’t noticed the name in a while. Not sure if Mog was a streamer but I feel like Roffle and a few others knew them. So they probably did play a ton of HS. And maybe it wasn’t quite that early, but it was early! Like, WAAAY earlier than it should have been for someone to have gotten that portrait!
At the moment, when Illidan meets Arthas on the ladder, he says something like "Today, and forever, I am your better, Arthas."
Which I enjoy, since Arthas is generally a smarmy bastard.
So I'm gonna swap in an Illidan portrait and rock some DH on the day 1 ladder until I get to hear their updated interaction. Shouldn't take long.
Maybe some Sylvanas after that.
A bit confused here. I thought the Path of Arthas set has to be bought with real money or gold? Wouldn't the solo adventure unlock the core set for DK?
And you would be right, the two are not quite the same. Thanks for catching that, now fixed! That one is also on me (somebody was too sleepy when prepping things late at night), not Avalon.
Definitely not the same! However, talking about three different sets, all of which are about Arthas and his ascension to the Frozen Throne, is bound to lead to some confusion (especially since they aren't already available, so it's all mind games): all I can say that is that I am glad we fixed it in just a handful of hours.
Personally, I think I am going to flood Constructed with Death Knight since Day 1.
I still remember when Demon Hunter was introduced back in Ashes of Outland: back then, I refused to play the class not because I didn't have the cards, but rather because I didn't want to be "that guy" and immediately infest ladder. Turns out Day 1 DH was lots of fun and ladder was mostly made of "that guy" players ahah.
For this reason, I am not going to miss my chance this time around: I will make sure to tech my DK decks so that they'll align against whatever DK lists streamers are playing at the moment and I will grind the crap out of the Golden portrait!
To be fair, with day 1 DH the option was basically to be "that guy" or to lose, so I suspect some of those "that guy"s were not actually "that guy"s but just people who didn't want to pull their hair out in rage every game.
Iirc, I noped out of it altogether and played some Wild instead :P I'm pretty sure the Shadowjeweler Hanar + Cheat Death combo kept me happy while Illidan destroyed Standard.
I still remember that I built an Anti-DH Demon Warlock with Kanrethad Ebonlocke and Enhanced Dreadlord for Taunts, Mo'arg Artificer and Nether Breath for Lifesteal gains, Doom Pact for even more healing (back then you could also target enemy Demons) and Aranasi Broodmother into Plot Twist for, you guessed it, more HP recovery; there was probably an Acidic Swamp Ooze too, since Aldrachi Warblades had 3 Durability hits on day 1.
I remember facing something like 11 Demon Hunters in a row and, finally, I also remember that, despite all my deckbuilding efforts, I didn't have a positive winrate, which is mind-blowing if you think about it: you build your deck just to counter one, ignoring all the other matchups, and you still get steamrolled. AoO day 1 was a whole other level of madness.
Death Knight has long been one of my favorite classes in WoW, and I am thrilled to see it coming to HS! I plan to grind the class upon release. I don't think I will get to 500 wins terribly quickly because I also tend to grind XP achievements when the expansion launches. I can't wait to play with this class.
Holy smokes, I take a break from Hearthstone for one expansion and there are a billion new things geez
Not really a fan of the 3d legendary portrait. But more concerning is what it'll do to the game when on mobile, or slower PCs. Might be that it lags the game to such an extent that the portrait is simply unplayable. We've already seen the effects of Convoke the Spirits on mobile, I'd be sad to see it happening to this as well.
Is anyone else made uncomfortable by the 3d skins? Some serious uncanny valley stuff here.
For me, the race to a 1000 wins with the new Death Knight class will start the very second the new March of the Lich King expansion goes live. Even if the DK class proves to be broken from the get go, it would probably still take me almost the entire length of the expansion to achieve this feat. Streamers will get there much sooner than us casual players.
By the way, I hope they will add another tier of wins per class because I have been preparing for it by having accumulated 1500 wins with all the old classes.
If something is added to reward getting over 1k wins, I believe it will require 2k wins to get.