This week’s shining example of Cross-Brand Synergy Optimization comes via Blizzard, who announced yesterday that the new Hearthstone hero Liadrin will only be obtainable if you have a World of Warcraft character.

Liadrin, who is a cosmetic upgrade and doesn’t add new abilities to the popular digital card game, will be unlocked for anyone who gets a World of Warcraft character to level 20. You don’t need a subscription—Blizzard says using the free Starter Edition works just fine—but you can’t get the unlock retroactively, either. You have to have gotten to level 20 after March 11. Synergy!


You can reach the author of this post at or on Twitter at @jasonschreier.