Blizzard wants you to leave your house and hang out with real people

Developer launches new Fireside Gathering initiative, encouraging Hearthstone players to meet up with local gamers.

World of Warcraft developer Blizzard Entertainment has launched a new initiative for its free-to-play card game, Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft, that encourages players to leave their homes and meet up with other gamers in the real world.

The initiative is called Fireside Gatherings. By meeting up with other players in places like coffee shops, book stores, or dorm rooms at college, you can show off your deck, trade strategy secrets, or host tournaments, Blizzard says. If you participate in a Fireside Gathering, you'll earn a new "Fireside Friends" card back for your collection. To get the card back, you'll need to play three matches of Hearthstone against another player on the same network using this criteria:

  • At least three people (including yourself) must be logged into Hearthstone on the same subnet.
  • Each match must be played against a player that is playing on the same subnet as you.
  • These matches can be played against your friends or using the Player Near Me feature, as long as the above two criteria are met.

You can find a Hearthstone get-together near you at Blizzard's Fireside Gatherings website. Blizzard has even partnered with schools like the University of California Irvine, University of North Texas, and University of North Carolina Charlotte to hold the events. But if you can't find a location near you, you can host your own and Blizzard has even put together a document with some tips and tricks about how to do so successfully.

Hearthstone is available today for PC and iPad. It's on schedule to arrive for Android sometime later this year.

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and you can follow him on Twitter @EddieMakuch
Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

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Discussion

329 comments
krishtrinity1
krishtrinity1

I did not upgrade my pc to go outside and meet people.We are in the Digital age fat people rules.

tightwad34
tightwad34

No thanks. I'll meet people on my own but that can be overrated. The best people I have met are my coworkers throughout the years, or at least my favorite people.

nyran125tk
nyran125tk

no way..its just a nuclear fallout outside with police using drones to hunt pot smokers (they are actually doing that now. its bizarre) and murder homeless people for kicks and giggles. fck that, I'm staying in the vault. Its warmer and sometimes cooler.

lilflipp
lilflipp

The real world doesn't have dragons sooooooo yeah.

lilflipp
lilflipp

Well I'm outside. Now I'm lost. My phone is running low on battery. My legs are starting to lag. How do I get back inside? I need to reboot.

Ghostdog201
Ghostdog201

"Blizzard wants you to leave your house and hang out with real people"


Eff that.  Overrated.

eric_neo3
eric_neo3

Yay that means we can LAN this f2p card game right? Right?

Oh silly me no LAN, for a second there I forgot this is blizzard we're talking about.

Immortallix
Immortallix

Will Blizzard get me a girlfriend????

bayernfan
bayernfan

Why bother! Go to a pub, invite your friends, go to the movies, go camping, take a walk. In other words, forget about Blizzard and gaming altogether.  This trend of devs and publishers of "social gaming" is really annoying.

Senor_Kami
Senor_Kami

"The initiative is called Fireside Gatherings. By meeting up with other players in places like coffee shops, book stores, or dorm rooms at college..."


As a company, there is no way I'd suggest strangers meet up in someone's dorm rooms to facilitate and better gaming experience.  That sounds like you're asking for trouble in the sue happy land that is the United State of America.

alabtrosmyster
alabtrosmyster

Real people are idiots, I refuse to watch this video and give them any credibility until they retract the going outside statement!

jimmy_russell
jimmy_russell

If I go out to meet up with friends and play a card game, it's Friday Night Magic. I'm not going to drag my tablet to a bar so I can hang out with random people from the Internet.

ecs33
ecs33

Or..I can just stay at home and keep trying to grind for my Cindercoat.

intotheminx
intotheminx

LOL some of you are genuinely upset that they want you to leave the house and are defending staying in and playing games. Jesus fuck.

TenraiSenshi
TenraiSenshi

Blizzard says they want their gamers to meet real people in real life... after they stop supporting local play (LAN) and implement always online DRM to most of their latest titles.

Seems legit.

SphinxDemon
SphinxDemon

Thats why I'm thankful everyday for booty calls..

lol the day I see a hotness playing one of these games is the day it rains food

pcostix
pcostix

The day every gamer comes out of their house, the world is going to turn into a giant SciFi convention.

001011000101101
001011000101101

This would be a good idea. Unfortunately I'm a fat fuck but my online gamer friends don't know that. I don't want them to see how fat I really am because when we play online I always make fun of fat people. So imagine if they discovered to irony there. EPIC FAIL lol

My gamer friends understand me better than any real person anyway. They don't judge me based on my looks or taste in anime. They accept me for who I really am. I can wear whatever I want when I'm online gaming. "Real" social interaction is just tiring since you have to live up to society's dumb rules. Life's too short for that!

insloanwetrust
insloanwetrust

Don't worry Blizzard after playing your games I did just that.

WereCatf
WereCatf

Why would I want to see other people, though?

Shelledfade1
Shelledfade1

I did that frequently after diablo 3 was released, cuz that's how bad it sucked.

Veenox
Veenox

Brillant marketing! "We don't need to pay a dime to get more players, we only have to use the current players to get new ones! All we need is some incentive and to give the impression we care about our customers at the same time!" 

Dizzy1976
Dizzy1976

Soooooooooo. How are we gonna get more people to play this?

That's easy.....let's just get our player base to recruit new players for us!

KamuiFei
KamuiFei

Stop pretending you care Blizzard. If you really did, Diablo 3 wouldn't have been total crap from the start.

tightwad34
tightwad34

@nyran125tk Police using drones to hunt pot smokers? Sorry, but I really don't buy that at all.

nyran125tk
nyran125tk

@Ghostdog201  its a feel good marketing gimic i can imagine. To earn brownie points. To earn some warm and fuzzie stars. They really dont. If people went outside more, who would play Blizzard's games?

ecs33
ecs33

jk..ofcourse. 

MartijNtjuh
MartijNtjuh

@TenraiSenshi  There realy isnt a direct connection between online DRM and having a real life dude...

ecs33
ecs33

@SphinxDemon  I know a few attractive chicks that play Blizzard games. 

intotheminx
intotheminx

@KamuiFei  I wasn't a Diablo fan when 3 dropped, but I started playing a few days ago. Having fun. Don't see the fuss.

tr4newreck
tr4newreck

@MartijNtjuh @TenraiSenshi  loss of LAN is a scumbag move though, and it did just that, bring people together in real life...  


besides blizzard doesn't care if you have a life, as you can see its not promoting you to go out and do stuff in your life, they want you to play their card game outside the house, not just inside

tightwad34
tightwad34

@ecs33 Depends on what you find "attractive". We all have our own preferences. Sorry, I mean those of us who can think for ourselves.

eric_neo3
eric_neo3

@Warlord_Irochi @KamuiFeiStill getting terrible drops, quest drops with supposed 100% drop rate not dropping, Legendary item drops on timers, and NO TRADING. and that's before always online and no LAN.


If they put in the effort they would have made the level cap 100 and enough gear to keep you busy till then, but instead they cut the level down and the amount of gear so that they had to put in the least amount of effort. Sad part is making more gear is so easy in games like D3 yet blizzard won't do it.

Just look at torchlight 2 to see it done right, and to see customers getting what they want LAN, Modding, FREE new content.


TLDR blizzard haven't really fixed anything in 2.0.

Warlord_Irochi
Warlord_Irochi

@eric_neo3 ok, by parts:
"Q
uest drops with supposed 100% drop rate not dropping"
No such thing.

"Legendary item drops on timers"
You totally made that up.

"NO TRADING"
Right click on the character's portrait -> Trade.

"If they put in the effort they would have made the level cap 100 and enough gear to keep you busy till then."
Yes, evil blizzard only put a paragon systems that is unlimited and allows you to cover every single stat (From attack speed to area damage). With all the gear in the game escalating as you hit max level, rifts and adventure mode that saves you from repeating the story again and again I really don't know what else you want.


"Just look at torchlight 2 to see it done right, and to see customers getting what they want LAN, Modding, FREE new content."
Oh yes, the usual cliché excuse. Torchlight 2 was good, but has fallen short already. It relies on people molding the game to diferenciate itself enough from the first one, which is cool in some way but the game does not seem to have a lot of support from runic games nowadays (all the recent updates in their website is about selling you merchandise).

TLDR: You obviously are talking without having spent a single minute with 2.0. Either that or you are one of those denying what the game they want to have has been fixed. Both cases gives you no credit at all. Diablo III is no longuer a shit game, Deal with it.

Done with you.