How To Level Up In Hearthstone
Leveling up in Hearthstone is not as important as in some games, but it still offers some benefits, particularly early on. You need to level up each class individually to level 10 in order to collect its full Standard Deck. Doing this for all classes is required for you to access the Arena. Additionally, you must have at least one class at level 20 to access the Tavern Brawl. Aside from that, the rewards from leveling heroes past 10 to 60 consist of the golden versions of all basic cards, which have no mechanical effect but may still be sought for their aesthetic value or for the sake of completion.
The progression system received a major overhaul near the end of 2020. It revised XP gain and introduced a parallel Rewards Track consisting of 350 levels and offering prizes such as card packs from the latest expansion, hero cosmetics, and gold. There have been more tweaks after that and it is likely that the exact XP gain values will continue to evolve. Still, the main methods of gaining XP and levels seem set in stone.
Quests are typically the quickest way of getting XP, especially for more casual players. After completing the first few introductory quests, you will begin to get a random Daily Quest every day and three Weekly Quests on each Monday. You can have up to three Daily Quests active at a time, receiving new ones so long as you are below this limit. The quests of either type normally require you to play certain types of cards, participate in a number of matches, and so on. Their usefulness for leveling will depend on the compatibility between their requirements and your playstyle. Fortunately, one Daily and one Weekly Quest can be replaced on each day.
Weekly Quests always include a 2500 XP mission to score 5 Ranked wins in addition to two random 1750 XP quests. Meanwhile, the rewards for Daily Quests can range between 900 and 1500 XP. As a result of this and different requirements, the actual quest XP gains are unlikely to be the same from one week to another. Still, pursuing quest goals over all else might be your most effective strategy if you have limited time for the game.
Playing the Game
Virtually all activities in the game offer some amount of XP just for engaging in them, and while individually small, those rewards tend to add up. The exact formula for XP gain is unknown, but there are some rough estimates:
- ~400 XP Gain per hour in Ranked mode
- ~350 XP Gain per hour in Casual mode
- ~150 XP Gain per hour in PvE mode.
The Ranked rate applies for both Standard and Wild formats. Casual modes include Tavern Brawl, Battlegrounds, Arena, and Duels, as well ordinary unranked play. PvE content is represented mainly by Adventures, Monster Hunt, and Dungeon Runs. Winning gives more XP, but the bigger bonus comes from playing. Note that there is a 30-minute cap on how much XP you can get just by playing one match. Even with it, the system currently encourages drawing games out. Running control decks in Ranked games would appear to be the most efficient way of leveling, but it requires a certain amount of expertise to do consistently, on top of the time investment.
Certain Achievements – typically the ones connected to the newest content, such as the latest expansion and mode – can also give out considerable XP rewards. At the time when this guide was written, this applied to the Darkmoon Faire expansion and the Duels mode. With 18400 and 12500 XP prizes on those examples respectively, going for the Achievements can certainly seem like a tempting option. However, receiving the whole prize generally requires playing through the content with all classes or satisfying other complex conditions. Still, it is worth keeping an eye on in case you feel up to the challenge or it aligns with your other plans.
The Tavern Pass Question
Each expansion brings with it a paid Tavern Pass. It automatically provides a 10% XP boost for the season, which is upgraded to 15% at level 10 on the Rewards Track and to 20% at level 35. While those bonuses are considerable, they are not retroactive. The amount of mileage you can get out of them depends on when you buy the pass and also on how actively you can play the game. To improve your chances of getting the most out of the pass, you may also want to get coaching with an emphasis on control tactics to take advantage of the Ranked rewards.
If you are dead set on leveling as quickly as possible, you should probably buy the Tavern Pass as soon as an expansion comes out and play regularly, concentrating on Ranked games. Otherwise, you might find it more rewarding to play the game and go up in rank at your own pace after getting all heroes to level 10 by doing quests. Either choice is valid and comes down to your free time and what sort of gameplay you find most fun.