Card pack

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Card pack concept art

Card packs are items that players can open to acquire cards for filling a player's collection.

Each expansion has its own type of card pack with unique artwork, containing only cards from that card set. As of the December Update (2019) all card packs are available to purchase in the in game shop. Although, only card packs from the current standard format can be rewarded Tavern Brawls.

Each card pack contains 5 cards from the corresponding set. Each card has a chance to be of common, rare, epic or legendary rarity, but each pack is guaranteed to contain at least one card of at least rare quality.[1] While the majority of cards in card packs are common, it is possible to find multiple cards of high quality within a single pack. Each card also has the chance to become a golden version of that card. The chances for rarities and golden versions are the same for all types of card packs,[2][3][4][5] and buying options do not in any way affect the contents of packs.[6]

The contents of each pack are decided at random, at the time of opening.[7][8] Details such as the amount of cards you currently have (with the exception of Legendary cards, which are guaranteed to be one you dont already have), and which heroes you have unlocked.

Card packs are potentially the most cost-efficient means of obtaining cards, but also one of the most random. With their generous but unpredictable contents, they offer a quick way of expanding the player's collection for a particular set, but when wishing to obtain a specific card, players will generally find it cheaper and quicker to craft the card instead.

Opening a pack[edit | edit source]

A gnome opening a new card pack.

Card packs can be opened by clicking on the "Open Packs" icon from the main menu screen. The number underneath the icon indicates how many unopened card packs you currently possess.

Once the Open Packs screen has been reached, all current unopened packs will be displayed on the left-hand side. Drag a pack over to the right-hand section or hit the space bar to open it. Once you open a pack, 5 cards appear face down. This forces you to turn each card individually either by hitting the space bar or clicking each card.

Hovering over a card shows a border depending on the rarity of the card. Hearthstone uses quality colors based on World of Warcraft's gear system.

  • No color means the card is of common rarity
  • A blue glow means the card is of rare rarity
  • A purple glow means the card is of epic rarity
  • An orange glow means the card is of legendary rarity

How to get[edit | edit source]

Standard format card packs can be obtained in many ways. They can be gained from competing in the Arena, for your first Tavern Brawl win each week, from certain quests, or they can be purchased from the in-game Shop, either for gold or for real money. Standard format card packs can also be purchased from the online shop. Classic card packs can also be obtained as rewards through the Recruit A Friend system.

Wild format card packs are never granted as rewards. However, Wild format card packs can be bought from the in game store. Players who had packs left over when the set moved to Wild format can still open them and receive cards as normal, and players can still obtain Wild format cards through crafting.

Purchasing[edit | edit source]

The following purchasing options are available. Only the single pack option is available for gold (although players can buy more than one pack at a time); all other options require real money. Players can use any of the payment methods that are also available for buying games and goodies from the Blizzard store.

Some of these prices were subject to changes on March 22, 2017 and may no longer be accurate.[9]

1 100
2 $2.99 ($1.495 per pack, $0.299 per card) £2.99 (£1.495 per pack, £0.299 per card) €2.99 (€1.495 per pack, €0.299 per card) 149.00 р. (74.50 р. per pack, 14.90 р. per card) R$ 7,00 (R$ 3,50 per pack, R$ 0,70 per card) A$3.95 (A$1.975 per pack, A$0.395 per card)
7 $9.99 ($1.427 per pack, $0.285 per card) £8.99 (£1.284 per pack, £0.257 per card) €9.99 (€1.427 per pack, €0.285 per card) 499.00 р. (71.28 р. per pack, 14.25 р. per card) R$ 21,00 (R$ 3,00 per pack, R$ 0,6 per card) A$13.50 (A$1.929 per pack, A$0.386 per card)
15 $19.99 ($1.333 per pack, $0.267 per card) £16.99 (£1.133 per pack, £0.227 per card) €19.99 (€1.333 per pack, €0.267 per card) 999.00 р. (66.60 р. per pack, 13.32 р. per card) R$ 39,00 (R$ 2,6 per pack, R$ 0,52 per card) A$26.95 (A$1.797 per pack, A$0.359 per card)
40 $49.99 ($1.250 per pack, $0.250 per card) £44.99 (£1.125 per pack, £0.225 per card) €49.99 (€1.250 per pack, €0.250 per card) 2500.00 р. (62.50 р. per pack, 12.50 р. per card) R$ 99,00 (R$ 2,475 per pack, R$ 0,495 per card) A$66.95 (A$1.674 per pack, A$0.335 per card)
60** $69.99 ($1.167 per pack, $0.233 per card) £59.99 (£1.000 per pack, £0.200 per card) €69.99 (€1.167 per pack, €0.233 per card) 3500.00 р. (58.33 р. per pack, 11.66 р. per card) R$ 145,00 (R$ 2,417 per pack, R$ 0,483 per card) A$94.95 (A$1.583 per pack, A$0.317 per card)
* Russian Ruble prices are frequently changing due to unstable exchange rate.
** Only available on PC and Mac.

Note that a discount is offered when buying in bulk. Purchasing 40 packs of cards at once presents a 12-16% discount compared to buying cards in sets of 2. Exact prices and discounts vary by currency.

While no bulk purchase option is presented for gold transactions, players can double-click on the '1 pack' option to instantly order multiple packs by entering a number from 1 to 50. No discount is offered. Players are informed of this option upon entering the shop for the first time with a sufficiently large amount of gold.[10]

Notes[edit | edit source]

Purchasing options in the Americas region.
  • All types of card pack feature the same chance of producing cards of any given rarity, and of golden and regular versions.[11][12] This suggests that the internal process for the selection of each card functions by first determining a rarity, then randomly selecting a card of that rarity to produce. There is evidence suggesting that cards can have "predetermined rarities", experienced when opening packs "again".[13]
  • The cards rewarded from card packs are selected randomly, and may not suit the player's taste or preferred classes. Additionally, players can only use 2 of each card in a deck (and only 1 of each Legendary), meaning additional copies of cards beyond these limits are of no value. When receiving unwanted cards from card packs, the disenchant option can be used to destroy unwanted cards in exchange for Arcane Dust, which can then be used to craft new cards. This process allows players to convert unwanted cards into more desirable options.
  • On June 22nd, 2017, Blizzard announced changes to card packs.[14] The announced changes took place on August 10th 2017 with the launch of Knights of the Frozen Throne and were as follows:
    • When you open a Legendary, you are guaranteed to find a Legendary that you do not yet own a (non-golden or golden) copy of, unless you already own all Legendaries of the set.
    • A single pack will never contain more than two copies of the same Common, Rare, or Epic card, or more than one copy of the same Legendary card.
    • Within each new set, you are guaranteed to get at least one Legendary within the first ten packs.
  • On March 17th, 2020, Blizzard announced more changes to card packs.[15] The announced changes took place on March 26th 2020, about two weeks prior to the launch of Ashes of Outland.[16]
    • Duplicate protection was extended across all rarities, not just for legendaries, when opening card packs.
    • Furthermore, if a player has yet to acquire all copies of cards from a particular rarity and disenchants some cards, the cards that were disenchanted will no longer show up in card packs until all other copies of cards from that rarity are acquired. Tracking for such disenchanted cards began when the patch went live on March 26.
    • Chadd Nervig also confirmed on Twitter that when a player has obtained for example 2 of all Commons, future Commons will be random but non-goldens will be ones which the player hasn't gotten non-golden of, and goldens will be ones the player hasn't gotten golden of.[17]
  • When opening packs, cards are displayed using the player's currently selected card back.

Statistics[edit | edit source]

Hovering over an Epic card.
Main article: Card pack statistics

Various attempts have been made to establish the chances of receiving each rarity of card when opening card packs. Note that all types of card pack have the same chances at rarities and golden cards.[2][3]

The following numbers combine data from several other studies. Since the numbers provided by each study are relatively similar, this is mostly for the convenience of a single overview of the statistics, as well as improved accuracy in the rarer cases. The original studies can be found in the linked article.

Currently included studies: Steve Marinconz (June 2014), E. R. Kjellgren (August 2014), Amaz (February 2015), HearthSim (August 2015). This produces a total sample size of 27,868 card packs, describing 139,340 cards in total.

Common Rare Epic Legendary
Percentage of total 71.65% 22.84% 4.42% 1.10%
Count per 27,868 packs 99,836 31,821 6,152 1,531
Probability of at least 1 per pack 99.81% 72.64% 20.21% 5.37%

In April 2017, in compliance with Chinese law, Blizzard published official probablities of card drops.[18] Though the official announcement applies to the Chinese region only, it is likely that the drop rates are across all regions.

The officially announced drop rates are:

  • RARE - At least 1 rare or better in each pack. (This was already known).
  • EPIC - Average of 1 every 5 packs. (This implies that at least 4% of all cards are epic).
  • LEGENDARY - Average of 1 every 20 packs. (This implies that at least 1% of all cards are legendary).

The reported drop chances are slightly lower than the observed drop rates. This is likely an indication that the announcement drop rates have to be read as "at least 1 epic every 5 packs", and "at least 1 legendary every 20 packs".

Golden cards

Golden card data gathered prior to The Grand Tournament show significant differences from that gathered after. For this reason the below information is currently taken solely from the most recent study: HearthSim (August 2015).

Common Rare Epic Legendary
Percentage of total Regular 70.36% 21.60% 4.08% 0.94%
Golden 1.48% 1.27% 0.19% 0.07%
Count per 15,109 packs Regular 53,151 16,319 3,086 710
Golden 1,120 957 146 56

The following table describes the likelihood of getting at least 1 golden card in a given pack.

Common Rare Epic Legendary Any rarity
Probability of at least 1 golden per pack 7.4% 6.35% 0.95% 0.35% 15.05%

The following table describes the percentage of cards of each rarity which will be golden.

Common Rare Epic Legendary
Percentage golden 2.06% 5.54% 4.52% 7.31%
Rough probability 1 in 48.5 1 in 18.1 1 in 22.1 1 in 13.7

Strategy[edit | edit source]

There are many strategies to opening card packs to maximize their utility, depending on factors such as how much gold a player earns on average per day, if the player is new, etc.

Video of strategies for opening card packs (2018-10-10).

Trivia[edit | edit source]

Concept art for the Goblins vs Gnomes card pack opening animation

The Goblins vs Gnomes card pack and its opening animation was originally designed by Jomaro Kindred,[19] and animated by John Zwicker.[20]

Videos[edit | edit source]

Gallery[edit | edit source]

1 pack to open
Picking up the pack
Placing it in the center
The pack bursting open...
…to reveal...
…5 brand new cards
Mousing over cards reveals their rarity
Another pack down
The player's current card back is used when opening packs
Gaining card packs from an external source

Patch changes[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. It is possible to open a pack with no Rares in it, if it has Epics/Legendaries instead: Imgur link. Tested in Patch (Tavern Brawl patch). Also see Card pack statistics#Notes.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Hearthstone Fireside Chat Goblins vs Gnomes. (2014-11-07). 
  3. 3.0 3.1 Ben Brode on Twitter. (2014-12-04). 
  4. Ben Brode on Twitter. (2015-08-15). 
  5. Ben Brode on Twitter. (2016-04-20). 
  6. Ben Brode on Twitter. (2014-12-13). 
  7. Ben Brode on Twitter. (2015-06-15). 
  8. Ben Brode on Twitter. (2016-08-29). 
  9. Price adjustments for PC, Mac and Android - Forums. (2017-03-10). 
  10. Ben Brode on Twitter. (2016-04-19). 
  11. Ben Brode on Twitter. (2014-11-19). 
  12. Ben Brode on Twitter. (2017-02-03). 
  13. Hearthstone Packs Hypothesis for "Predetermined Rarity" - Reddit. (2017-01-19). Retrieved on 2017-01-19.
  14. Hearthstone Update: Upcoming Card Pack Changes. (2017-06-22). 
  15. Blizzard Entertainment (March 17, 2020). Welcome to the Year of the Phoenix!. Retrieved on 2020-03-31.
  16. Blizzard Entertainment (March 26, 2020). Ashes of Outland – 17.0 Patch Notes – March 26. Retrieved on 2020-03-31.
  17. Chadd Nervig on Twitter. (2020-03-26). 
  18. Official Card Rarity Drop Probabilities from Packs. (2017-05-05). 
  19. John Zwicker on Twitter. (2014-12-09). 
  20. Yong Woo on Twitter. (2014-12-08).