Addressing Hearthstone Accessibility

Hello all,

Some of you might be familiar with HearthstoneAccess, a wonderful third-party accessibility mod that’s been a great way for blind and low vision players to play Hearthstone. We’ve been in constant communication with GuideDev, its developer, and have implemented measures to make development of the mod easier. We’re big fans of their work!

We’ve also been working on improvements to Hearthstone’s native accessibility, with the aim of complementing the functionality that HearthstoneAccess provided. For example, the combination of Hearthstone’s music, sound effects, character dialog, and tavern ambience (the voice murmurs in the background) can conflict with the audibility of screen-reading software trying to convey the state of the game. We know there may be a number of reasons why a player might want to adjust these different channels independently, whether that’s needing to focus on particular noises, finding certain sounds distracting, or simply preferring a different audio balance than what is default. In a patch after March of the Lich King launches, we’re adding expanded Audio Settings to support separate volume controls for each of these, along with an option for Mono Sound.

With HearthstoneAccess mod support ending, we’ve made the decision to shift our work in this area—instead of working on accessibility features that complement HearthstoneAccess, we’ll be exploring what it will take to implement native accessibility features that allow for our blind and low vision community to get back into the game. We’re incredibly appreciative of everything that GuideDev has done for our community and we’re very excited to continue expanding our game’s accessibility.

A project of this magnitude and importance will take time to complete. We’re very sorry to our friends and players who won’t have access to Hearthstone during this time. If you have further accessibility feedback, you can contact us at That feedback is sent directly to the game teams, and while we can’t reply to all the messages we receive, they help us prioritize our development so that we’re working on what matters most to our players.

Once again, thank you to GuideDev and to all our players in the blind and low vision communities. We’ve been encouraged by so many players coming together to show their support for this issue and look forward to sharing more details with you once we have them.

Update: We are happy to share that we have been informed that other community members have taken over the work on HearthstoneAccess, so that it is not ending after all! We will still be continuing our efforts to implement more native accessibility features, but our blind and low vision community is able to play in the meantime.


As a user of the Hearthstone accessibility patch I’d like to thank you for working with GuideDev on building this into Hearthstone itself.
I realize it will take time, but hopefully not too much time…
Looking forward to updates as they are made available!


That’s amazing, I hope it’s implemented soon!



As a mod user and also as a “non-mod” software engineer I would just like to make you one request.

Please don’t forget about mobile platforms.

I know that at first, maybe the focus should actually be on Windows, but it would be really cool to have Hearthstone on other platforms, in addition to making the game viable for many more players.

All mobile platforms and libraries have easy accessibility modes. Unity even has an integrated plugin that usually applies the necessary corrections. I have no idea what engine you guys use, but I assume it’s Unity because it’s also on Windows.

I know that at this point a single request is too much. I’m grateful they just didn’t let the mod die. It doesn’t matter if it’s now or 6 months from now, knowing that I’ll be able to interact again with my Warcraft characters in a card game I’ve learned to master over the last few months will be fun.

But please don’t forget about mobile platforms.

Blizzard now has the chance to do something great, something Naughty Dog did. Keep that in mind and I know you’ll do a good job.

And if you need advice, free beta test or QA, know that I’m available.
Thanks for this great news.


Opponent emotes seem to fit a lot of the criteria/reasons given for these expanded features. I.e. screen reader issues, distracting, and annoying to a minority of players.

With all due respect to those who really need these accessibility features just to play Hearthstone, will a Squelch toggle (both visual and audible) be one of the options?


And what about the autosquelch feature that was being discussed last year?!? It’s been nearly a year since Ayala said this was being pitched. What is the status of this UI improvement, since you seem to be putting resources into UI improvements.


Hello all,
First, this is great news! I have been playing Hearthstone with the help of Hearthstone Access for months now and I appreciate and love everything Guide Dev has done to make the gaming experience as good as it has been. I am available for accessibility beta testing and such if that becomes a thing.

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thank you all for taking on this project, and embracing the blind community.
Also happy to give feedback/beta test what you guys implement if that would ever prove valuable.


I knew you were going to reply to this :joy:

An extra button is too clunky, but now that they are adding extra buttons for the audio settings they can’t escape with this excuse anymore.


Not to mention the THOUSANDS of buttons added with the achievement interface!!


Please, there is some update about screen reader support? My son is very sad:-(

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If this company doesn’t care about its sexist polices (the board going so far to say “we investigated ourselves and found to wrongdoing”) then they don’t care about discriminating against the disabled community any more than they did against women.