HCT Americas Summer Playoff Analysis

The HCT Americas Summer Playoffs ended this past weekend, packed full of exciting games and new names making the top eight. Today I’ll take a look at the lineup of all 70 players in the tournament.

The deck distribution by popularity:

  1. Jade Druid - 69

  2. Kazakus Priest - 58

  3. Murloc Paladin - 34

  4. Pirate Warrior - 28

  5. Handlock - 18

Game Culture: Class Identity in Hearthstone Matters

Hearthstone has made its name as a wildly successful online TCG for a variety of reasons. I think one of the most important is the flavor and character represented in each of the game’s classes. For those that don’t know, Hearthstone’s decks are based on nine classes from the Warcraft franchise, with each class represented by a fully voiced and animated hero. Along with the heroes, all of the class’ cards are given the same level of individuality and personality.

Hearthstone Patch 9.1 Preview

Hearthstone just received patch 9.1, the promised nerf to Druids that Hearthstone Game Director, Ben Brode, tweeted about recently. For players, including popular Hearthstone streamer, Kripparian, we expected heavy-handed nerfs, comparable to Warsong Commander and Starving Buzzard which were nerfed to unplayable status, to the Jade Ramp Druid deck. But to many it seems like we received quite the opposite: Druid got hit with the most nerfs with Innervate and Spreading Plague, with Innervate being nerfed to a Coin and Spreading Plague being increased to six mana.

Hearthstone: The Sweetspot of Epic Cards

It’s hard to not get excited over a Legendary card, especially with its entry animation, voice line, and unique abilities. From randomly adding other Legendary cards with Prince Malchezaar to dealing damage to a random enemy character with Ragnaros, Legendary cards are where Blizzard is able to flex their brains and experiment with the mechanics available to them using Hearthstone’s digital format. With Journey to Un’Goro, Blizzard amped up their Legendary game by providing each class with not one, but two Legendary cards (a quest and a minion).

And It's Not League of Legends: Shardbound

This comes from fairly far afield. This week, and assumedly for several more months, I have been playing Shardbound which is one of the most fascinating strategy games I’ve played in a very long time. And it is very definitely not League of Legends

What is it?

Hearthstone: Adapting to the Un'Goro Meta

Un’Goro has been out for quite a while and the community has gone through multiple different phases. This started with outrage over Quest Rogue, to rising complaints over the price barrier for newer players, to now going back to play Pirate Warrior. Decks that were previously theorized to be amazing turned out bad, while some overlooked cards (such as the Rogue’s Quest) became a pretty strong contender in Standard.

Hearthstone: Un'Goro is Here, What Now?

The year of the mammoth has finally dawned upon Hearthstone and the meta has shifted to welcome the new cards and play style from Journey to Un’Goro. Within the ladder, players are trying out new deck archetypes and experimenting with new cards, so they can become the first player to discover the strongest deck of the meta. It’s been quite a long time since an expansion was able to shake up the meta so wildly, but this has not come with its own faults.

Hearthstone: Journey to Un'Goro Card Review I

Journey to Un’Goro is the next expansion and with just about a month left before it hits. Blizzard is now giving us a small taste of the set with our very first card announcement stream since the announcement. Here's a Reddit thread to help you stay on top of any revealed card.

Let's talk about Hearthstone: Deck Archetypes

If you have read my Understanding Hearthstone series, you may have heard me alluding to the different deck archetypes that exist. First are the aggressive decks that aim to reduce their opponent’s health down to zero as quickly as possible. Weapons such as Doomhammer or Arcanite Reaper are a strong part of these aggressive decks as they are able to deal a huge amount of damage with relatively small mana investments. Secondly, there are control decks that plans to extend out the game towards their value-filled cards that can easily flip the board state.

Meme Streets of Gadgetzan: Pirates and the Upcoming Rotation

With 2017 creeping ever so closer, it is time for the standard meta to part ways with cards from Blackrock Mountain, The Grand Tournament, and League of Explorers. Decks will be forced to adapt and the metagame will definitely change up as cards like Reno Jackson and Brann Bronzebeard head over into the world of Wild. But until then, we still have time to talk about one of the most prominent deck archetypes within ladder - pirate decks.