I'm talking about the silly animations and interactions with the board. I noticed it being hyped up and talked about quite a bit, is their a marketing scheme involving this or something? Or are they legit excited about them?
I wish I had an intelligent answer to this, but I am in the same boat as you. I don't understand it.
"OMG LOOK WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU CLICK HERE" but no, it serves no real purpose. GG.
I think they know that people HATE being stuck waiting and having nothing to do. Just waiting and watching your opponent think and do nothing is probably something they realise will drive people away......unless they give players something to do, ANYTHING to do while that other player is doing his/her turn. So, interactive board. It gives players, at least something to do, however small while still being concentrated on the game. Blizz could easily just have a boring board with nothing to do on it, but that would lead to people simply concentrating on their surroundings, their phone w/e while waiting for their opponent to do anything. Interactive board keeps you looking at the board.
Now, an interactive board probably won't help in the long run, cause people know what the board does and get bored with it, but it's the only thing Blizzard can do to keep people in the game at all times, even while you are waiting for your opponent to do his thing.
They could've integrated a bejeweled in there or something?
It's designed as a simple psychological trick to keep you from alt-tabbing when it's not your turn. Is it being "hyped"? Nah, I don't think so. Mostly they're just proud of their art at this stage. I really doubt that they're going to plaster the clickable flowers over all their marketing material for the launch.
Honestly, to me, I like seeing it. I'm glad that it's there. Because it's emblematic of something that's been pretty core to Blizzard's philosophy over the years: they do things that they don't have to do. Would this game be fine with a simple static background? Sure. Is it better with their board? Yes. Is it worth that little bit of extra effort, for the sake of showing you've taken that bit of extra effort? Yes.
I'm in the boat of not particularly liking it.
I play plenty of MTG, you don't need an interactive board to keep peoples attention, you need a solid game - I honestly think any problems hearthstone might have with failing to keep peoples interest when it's not their turn is entirely due to it's lack of instants, with MTG at least half the time you've got something you can play on the opponents turn.
Not saying HS SHOULD have instants, I'm glad it's differentiating itself from MTG, but I think it's the root of any potential player boredom that occurs when it's not your turn.
I think it's far too early to go saying either way yet though, only fair to give the game a chance to prove itself.
I personally would change around everything to allow for instants, but the trap card thing might be cool too.
I wish they had maybe a mini game or something. For instance, a lot of the online poker sites prior to being shut down would allow you to play hands of blackjack while waiting for betting to go around the table.
It's all about an experience. If the board was static, the game could potentially feel stale.
It reminds me a lot of DVD menus. If a DVD menu is just a static picture no animations, nothing, I get bored by it (granted it's not the menu I'm there for), and it truthfully impacts my "experience", and anticipation.
Same thing with any other game I play on the iPad (I don't really play much like this on my computer). If it's just plain and static, then there is nothing extra about it to like, no extra quirks to enjoy, nothing to subtly like.
It's hard to explain, but if it's too straight and too to the point and static it feels cheap.
That said, the game, to be successful is NOT reliant on the board and it's animations, but the gameplay itself.