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Hearts’ Game: The Final Season

It seems like only yesterday we inflicted Hearts’ Game on an unsuspecting playerbase. Alas, it was nearly a year ago. We have reached the end of the line: the final new season of the Game. Welcome to the Season of Duplicity.

Hearts’ Game is an endgame activity available to players who have become a specialised Person of Some Importance and raised their base Dangerous to 200 or more. It begins by drawing a card in London. The new season is out now.

New Accomplices!

This season is a little different than the previous ones – it adds several major new features to the game, and only features two new accomplices. But what accomplices they are! The King of Motley turns the normal logic of drafting accomplices on its head. And the Knight of Nobility brings an entirely new skill – Glasswork – into the game.

New Challenges!

This season adds several new Distinctions that can be earned by winning a trophy in certain ways. Win with only pages, or knights. Win by making use of the King of Motley’s unique mechanic.

If you’d like a challenge, Mr Hearts now offers the Embalmer’s Mark. Take it, and the game will be more difficult – targets more resilient to poison and more elusive. Win a trophy with it, and a unique Distinction will be available.

A new mechanic: Counterplay!

The targets of Hearts’ Game have lobbied for an alteration to the rules. They are now significantly less helpless.

Certain actions you can take will now generate points of Counterplay. As Counterplay rises, more and more black-bordered cards will be added to your deck – draw them, and your target will take action against you.

Counterplay is intended to make the game a skosh harder and increase the value of skill checks. It is possible – though difficult – to completely avoid Counterplay. It’s also possible to simply accept the risks, or to manage which Counterplay cards you can get and which you’d completely avoid – I am curious to see what strategies emerge.

New Rewards!

Collecting the new Distinctions will allow you to obtain two new reward items in the Gamekeeper’s Cottage. Collect both of those items and, eventually, the final Hearts’ Game reward will unlock for you; a true mark of a devoted player of the game.

One of these two rewards (and therefore the final reward) will take some time to become truly available, however. Read on for how this will work.

The future of Hearts’ Game

While this is the final new season, it is not quite the final season. Here are the ongoing plans for Hearts’ Game past this point:

  • In early May, expect one final set of balance adjustments to Hearts’ Game, based on your feedback on this season
  • After that point, Hearts’ Game seasons will begin to cycle monthly. There are six seasons: Nascency, Excess, Dares, Devotion, Irreverences, Duplicity. Each has its own Distinction that can be gained by trophying during that season.
    • We won’t grant Distinctions retroactively, but this ‘final season’ period will count for the Distinction of Duplicity.
    • One of the new rewards requires collecting all of the new seasonal Distinctions; it will therefore only become available in September, at the earliest.
  • Mechanics and accomplices will remain the same as this regular rotation of season happens; but story events will change, and the regular seasonal rotation will allow you to collect more medals and obtain the seasonal distinctions.
  • This cycle will continue indefinitely, keeping Hearts’ Game story and rewards available permanently.

The game is, and remains, afoot

We hope you will enjoy this season, and future seasons, of Hearts’ Game. Oh, and don’t worry – we’ll have more detail on other upcoming goodies for you soon.