Blizzplanet Hearthstone NYC Fireside – Jan.24.2015 Tournament Results

Today, members of the New York City Hearthstone Fireside Gathering met up to play a single-elimination (Best of 3) tournament. It was our first fireside of 2015.

We met this time at our new meeting location courtesy of Turbo Studios and Andrey (co-organizer) who opened the door for us, and helped with the tournament setup via Battlefy.

It was a lot of fun. Have you ever planned this perfect event weeks in advance and then DOOMSDAY scenario happens? We shared a few laughs. The unthinkable happened. Last night, the Snow/Rain-mix storm somehow knocked Turbo Studios’ internet connection offline. The WiFi network was all fine, but no internet. So How do you hold a Hearthstone tournament with no internet?

Not even I knew the answer to that, and we were funnily desperate trying to troubleshoot getting the network back online. There was no plan B, but then the Heroes of Warcraft came forth to build defenses and guard our backs. At least 4-5 Fireside members shared their smartphone WiFi Hotspot passwords and we got the tournament rolling.

If you have been hesitant in organizing a Fireside Gathering, being the founder of one in your area, don’t worry too much. I am a very shy guy and not very talkative. Things don’t go perfect always, but you can rely on members networking with each other and helping out. Some may approach you to volunteer to help you. After all, Firesides are not just a means to play your favorite game, but also a medium where to meet new people and to forge long-lasting friendships.

Congratulations to the 1st Winner: Mungocomics (Hearthstone Mug); and 2nd Winner: Mithalas ($20 Hearthstone Gift Card). The prizes were actually the other way around, but both winners decided to swap prizes on their own– after prizes had been assigned.

You may see the final results of our Tournament Brackets here:

Special thanks go to Blizzard Entertainment-FSG Team for the card pack codes, Turbo Studio for sharing their space and time to hold the tournament, and the members who provided the improvised Plan B for internet access (where there was no Plan B originally).

Overall, everyone said they had fun, and loved the new place. We also figured out how to plug a Laptop to the big TV and watched the semi-final and final matches onscreen as spectators. I recorded the 3 matches of the 1st & 2nd winners: Mungocomics and Mithalas.

Our next scheduled Fireside will take place on Saturday, February 7th at 1pm. Check future listings at FiresideGatherings.com or LiquidHearth.

To RSVP in upcoming NYC Fireside Gatherings visit our MeetUp.com Page.

Metagame counters: January edition

I wanted to start a series every month of a couple cards to counter the metagame from ranks 10 up to legend. After a series of reddit hearthstone posts about a ramp druid hitting number one rank in legend for the NA and EU servers, as well as a remarkable article written to report on the metagame that exists right now, the ramp druid deck has seen a huge rise in popularity. With this deck archetype, there were a couple new cards featured to counter the prevalence of Dr. Boom and other cards. Mind control tech has not been seen often in the metagame but has now been seeing a lot of play as it has huge immediate swing potential. The same goes for BGH, which now is in every deck because of the widespread use of Dr. Boom. Therefore, many of these counters can also be countered. Here are some of the cards that I think currently best counter many of the cards in the most played decks. Keep in mind that these are my thoughts so I could also be horribly wrong.

The Black Knight: The ramp druid deck relies on many mid-game to late game minions that often have taunt, such as Druid of the Claw or Ancient of War. The Black Knight can cause a huge swing on the board with it’s powerful battlecry. The other popular decks on the ladder right now include control hunter and control warrior, both decks that run sludge belcher. Until Sludge Belcher goes away in the meta, which I don’t think it will soon, the Black Knight will hold decent value and even more value against druids and handlocks.

Kelthuzad or Sneed’s old shredder: Both these cards serve the same purpose right now as they are both big, high cost legendaries that immensely affect the board state. However, they also both do not have more than 7 attack, a key stat now with the widespread use of BGH. This makes dealing with these legendaries tough, especially with Sneed’s deathrattle effect or timing KT to recover a lot of minions on the board. Played at the right time, both these cards could outright win the game for you so keep a look out to see if your deck can fit one of these big boys in. Another advantage that these cards have over Dr. Boom is because of Mind control tech. The perfect answer to Boom these days is to MCT and steal the 7/7. Play around this at all costs!

Zombie Chow: Hunters are still prevalent and this card does a lot of work early in the game against the annoying deathrattle minions hunters often bring. The other decks popular in the meta also lack early game cards so grabbing board control works well.

I apologize to those who can’t afford the legendaries on the list but stay tuned for next month when I’ll hopefully have some cheaper options.

Casual Fun Deck – Fatigue Rogue

I was messing around on casual play in Hearthstone the other day and I came across the idea of having a fatigue Rogue. There have been new additions to the metagame with fatigue Mage and fatigue Druid, but I was wondering if fatigue Rogue is viable. Ever since the nerf on everyone’s favorite auctioneer, Rogue has decreased in popularity. Despite Rogue having a lot of cards for stalling, there’s always the challenge of Rogue in keeping the health total high because weapons cost life and Rogues don’t have life gain mechanisms like Warrior or Paladin. This is my first take on this fatigue Rogue deck that I came up with:

Fatigue Rogue decklist

I will go over a couple of the key cards in this deck. Most of it is typical Rogue early game removal to get to the mid and late games to continue the stalling process. Again, the greatest challenge is staying alive as Rogues often need to sacrifice life early on. Here we go:

Coldlight Oracle: The deck is heavily based on this card to draw cards for your opponent and yourself. Because it gives both you and your opponent two cards, this mechanic relies on the opponent drawing additional cards to bring fatigue faster. Additionally, if played well, two cards could clog hands and could cause one or more cards to get burned, which will help eliminate potential threats.

Trade Prince Gallywix: This is another card that the deck is based on. Basically, it shuts down spells and if your opponent does decide to use spells, they will have less useful coin cards stuffing their hands. This can be used to your advantage to force them to overdraw and burn cards. A 5/8 body helps in securing the board when it is alive. I’ve always wanted to make a deck revolving around this fun card and I’m not sure if this is the greatest fit but for now, it takes a slot in this fatigue deck.

Youthful Brewmaster: Basically, this card combos with the other battlecries in the deck, like Coldlight Oracle or Antique Healbot. However, the main drawback is that typically, the battlecry won’t be used twice in one turn until the late game so the impact really isn’t immediate and there won’t be an impact on the board either. A 3/2 body isn’t bad but could be much better, especially late, and could even be used to stop a deck from running you over early.

Antique Healbot: Unfortunately, it serves as the only healing option in the deck, which is certainly a problem without many taunts. Therefore, I am debating adding in Earthen Ring and/or Sludge Belcher to give more bodies that can populate the board at the same time as healing/stalling. Otherwise though, this card is great with its 8 HP heal and is ubiquitous now in stall decks.

Vanish: Vanish is a card that can really be extremely valuable if used properly. With the metagame rampant with Dr. Boom, there are many opportunities to cause overdraws and even massive board clears by returning cards when the opponent has a full ten cards. The only issue is that for these value plays, the board needs to get developed to that stage, which is a risk with the fragile nature of Rogue. The same goes for Betrayal, which is another underrated card featured in this deck. These cards can be extremely valuable against decks that flood the board but could be dangerous in the encouragement for letting opponents get too many hits on you. A fine balance needs to be maintained for these cards. One or two of these card slots could be replaced in future renditions of this deck for more reliable options with bigger immediate impact, like the aforementioned Earthen Ring Farseer or Sludge Belcher.

Patient Assassin: This card isn’t bad as it usually threatens to trade up with a bigger minion every time. However, with it’s 1 hp, the card is punished by AoE clears and could set you back quite a bit. I still think it’s worth playing in this deck, at least as a one of, but I could see it being replaced. In a way, it acts as a very cheap removal that takes a turn to develop, which in actuality could be a potential problem.

I will repeat that the deck was only played in Casual play, and I was able to get a couple wins mostly off of the surprise factor. However, with a bit more tinkering on some of the cards mentioned above, perhaps there’s a worthwhile deck in there that may not take the world by storm but occasionally steal a win here or there in a tournament.

2015 Hearthstone World Championship Details Soon

Blizzard Entertainment posted a heads up about the Hearthstone World Championship through various means including Fireside Gatherings. Not specific details yet. Just a heads up. Go read the entire publication.


2015 Hearthstone World Championship Details Soon

The road to the Hearthstone World Championship begins anew! As of January, players are eligible to collect points from Ranked Play, Fireside Gatherings, tournaments, and more to earn themselves a spot to the 2015 Hearthstone World Championship. More information can be found below.

About

The Hearthstone World Championship is the largest professional Hearthstone tournament in the world, where 16 exceptional players from around the globe come together to duel for glory, prizes, and the esteemed title of Hearthstone World Champion. This massive tournament is preceded by months of Ranked Play seasons, invitational tournaments, community tournaments, and Fireside Gatherings where players compete for points used to secure coveted spots in Regional Qualifier events.

World Championship

The Hearthstone World Championship will take place at the end of fall 2015, featuring 16 of the world’s best players. The Hearthstone World Championship’s tournament format will be announced at a later date.

Regional Championships

The Hearthstone Regional Championships decide the 16 players that will attend the Hearthstone World Championship. The Americas, Europe, China, and Asia-Pacific regions will each have Regional Tournaments where eight of the most talented players from their respective regions will compete for four representative spots at the Hearthstone World Championship. The Americas region consists of North America and Latin America, while the Asia-Pacific region includes: Korea, Taiwan, Southeast Asia, Australia, New Zealand, and Japan.

Regional Qualifiers

The Hearthstone Regional Qualifiers will take place in the fall of 2015, just before the Regional Championships. Players from North America, Latin America, Europe, Southeast Asia, Australia, New Zealand, China, Korea, Japan, and Taiwan will duel at regional 40 player double-elimination tournaments. The top eight players who emerge from the tournaments victoriously will clinch a spot at their corresponding Regional Championships. Players will be seeded into the 40 player tournament based on their standing in the 2015 Hearthstone point structure.

Point Structure

Players are able to obtain Hearthstone World Championship 2015 qualifier points through Ranked Play seasons as well as through Blizzard sanctioned tournaments. Points received are based on performance, with better results awarding more points. Players who achieve a minimum of 2 points by the end of July will be eligible for their regional Last Call Tournament, which feeds into their corresponding Regional Qualifiers. The 23 players per region with the highest point totals will receive advanced seeding in their Regional Qualifier and do not need to play in the Last Call Tournament in order to qualify.

Fireside Gatherings

Select Fireside Gathering events will host Blizzard-sanctioned Hearthstone tournaments. The winners of these tournaments will be entered into the Fireside Gathering Championship, and the Grand Champion will be awarded a seed directly into their corresponding Regional Qualifier.

Residency Requirements

Participation in a Regional Championship, Regional Qualifier, or Fireside Gathering is dependent on proof of residency or citizenship within the given eligible region.
This thread will continue to be updated with more information. Check back later for more information!

The Most Underrated Cards of GvG

It’s been almost a month since Goblins vs. Gnomes has been released and the metagame has shifted drastically in constructed play to accommodate the introduction of these new cards. Many cards, such as and are seeing regular play in common decks like Zoo and Handlock, respectively. In general, the minions from this expansion have defined the new style of play, ranging from the deathrattles of the piloted minions like and and new powerful legendary minions such as and . However, there is still unexplored space in constructed for new strategies and new cards to make it into the metagame. The cards detailed below are some cards that I have deemed “underrated,” as in they are not currently seeing much action in ranked play right now but could potentially see more action in the future.


(2.6% use in Rogue decks): At first look, this card doesn’t look too special as it costs 3 for an underwhelming 2 attack and 2 health, but its ability is what could make this card a game changer. If played on a turn with another mech minion on the field, it gives a +2/+2 bonus at the end of the turn, essentially giving 4/4 stats for 3 mana if played correctly. This last part is the toughest part to fulfill as the bonus is given at the end of the turn, which makes this less useful than say that of . However, if used well in a Rogue mech tempo deck, this card could really make smaller mechs like the into sizable threats. In the event the opponent cannot deal with the Iron Sensei immediately, the card could snowball a player to victory, and because of that, the card almost has a “taunt-like” ability, in which the opponent cannot afford to ignore the sensei. The card is limited due to its situational use but in a deck revolved around building boards full of mech minions, the sensei can win games.

(0.69% use in Warlock decks): A 4 mana 3 attack 5 health minion also has an “end of turn” ability that shoots two damage randomly to a non-mech minion. In the constructed ladder from ranks 15-5 against many zoo or hunter decks, this ability could work wonders in removing threats efficiently. Against those fast decks using multiple low cost minions, the card can often trade 2 or 3 to one if played correctly. Even in matchups against control decks, the two damage may help in trading lower minions up for legendary minions. This card is also a mech and there haven’t been many experimentation on warlock mech decks, but there is probably good reason for that as the other deck archetypes (Zoo, Handlock, Demonlock) have proven stronger as of yet.

(1.09% use in Warrior decks): This card costs an insane amount at 7 mana but it has a powerful removal effect in destroying a minion. With a damaged minion, the card costs 4 less and makes this card very situational. For 3 mana, destroying a minion is expensive in control warrior decks as and both do the same for only 1 mana. However, if the meta becomes more “greedy” with bigger legendaries being packed into handlocks and warrior decks, this card could see more play. There are ways to damage your own minions with cards like to activate the card but still the situational high cost of 3 mana could keep many decks from cutting an important card for this one.

(0.28% use in all decks, most (0.41%) used in Mage decks): The Bomb Lobber is a 5 mana for a 3 attack and 3 health minion that deals 4 damage to a random enemy minion. Although the effect is random, a skilled player can manipulate the board to direct the 4 damage to a desired minion. This battlecry ability when played well can ensure a two for one scenario or allow for a trade up. However, one deterrent for playing the card is it’s high mana cost and associated low body. As of right now, the metagame involves many sticky minions with deathrattle and so the use for this bomb loving goblin remains low. In a deck designed to gain tempo, this card provides that at a high mana slot and could be worth a look.



(0.17% use in all decks, most (0.4%) used in Warlock decks): The hotly debated card of GvG has been heralded by some and blasted by others, but the truth is this card in constructed has not been fully explored. For 5 mana, the card has an 8 attack and 8 health body with a unique ability in which opponent’s cards played will cause your deck to burn three cards from the top. Basically, for playing a huge threat ahead of the mana curve, the drawback is losing cards off of your deck. There were some popular decks previously using to silence minions with drawbacks that could be viable in a deck built around this card and others with massive drawbacks. Especially since is already popular in Handlock decks, this card could slot right in instead of one to serve the same role but with higher attack and health. My current feeling is that we haven’t yet fully explored this card and that decks could be built around this card.

This wraps up my current summary of some of the underrated cards from GvG. There are bound to be more with currently unknown synergies waiting to be found so always feel free to experiment on the ladder! There are pros and cons with playing any card over another and so finding the right mix of 30 cards is definitely the next challenge for this new year.

Hearthstone Now Playable on Android Tablets

Say goodbye to your few moments of IRL downtime and efficiency. Hearthstone is now officially playable on Android Tablets =)

Blizzard Entertainment’s acclaimed free-to-play strategy card game now available in select regions; rolling out worldwide on Google Play™ and Amazon Appstore for Android in the days ahead

IRVINE, Calif. –(BUSINESS WIRE)– Blizzard Entertainment invites Android™ gamers to a friendly fireside duel—Hearthstone®: Heroes of Warcraft™ is now available for Android tablet devices! Players in Canada , Australia, and New Zealand can now download the game for free on Google Play™, with the worldwide rollout on Google Play and the Amazon Appstore for Android coming in the days ahead.

“Hearthstone’s intuitive interface and approachable design make it a perfect fit for tablets, and we’ve put a lot of effort into ensuring players have a great experience on a wide range of Android devices,” said Mike Morhaime , CEO and cofounder of Blizzard Entertainment . “We’re excited to welcome Android players to the Hearthstone community, and we’re looking forward to bringing the game to even more mobile platforms—including phones—in the future.”

Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft is a fast-paced, easy-to-learn online† digital card game for players of every skill level. Hearthstone offers a wide variety of ways to play, whether you want to prove your prowess in ranked matches, test your chops as a deck builder in the Arena, take on crafty A.I. opponents in the Curse of Naxxramas Adventure (sold separately), or challenge your friends to a duel.

Hearthstone players on Android tablets have access to all of the exciting features and content available in the Windows, Mac, and iPad® versions of the game—including the recently released first expansion, Goblins vs Gnomes™, which adds more than 120 new cards and an all-new type of minon, Mechs. Players can purchase Goblins vs Gnomes card packs in the in-game shop for gold or real-world currency, earn cards as Arena rewards, or craft them using Arcane Dust.

To celebrate the launch on Android and help new players start their collection, anyone who starts one game in any mode on their Android tablet will receive one free Classic card pack from the original Hearthstone set.

In addition to the Android tablet version, Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft is available now on iPad and Windows and Mac PCs, with iPhone and Android phone versions in the works.

Visit playhearthstone.com to learn more about Hearthstone, then head to Google Play or the Amazon Appstore for Android to download the game for free, and start dueling!

The Most Fun I’ve Had Yet

It’s no secret that I’m a poor Hearthstone player. My arena runs are quick, brutal, and infrequent. I don’t climb the ladder so much as I find a rung and sit there. Usually after playing a few games my enthusiasm vanishes and frustration takes its place. That’s changed recently. Now I can spend hours playing game after game, win or lose, and I’ve got a smile on my face. Sometimes its a wide one, others are barely a grin. I’m having fun with Hearthstone and it’s because of a single card.

hearthstone-goblins-vs-gnomes-unstable-portal

It’s wonderful. Beyond wonderful. It’s the best card in the game. I don’t care what it gives me. Last night I got: Hungry Crab, Harvest Golem (turn 1), Bolvar Fordragon, Zombie Chow, Northshire Cleric, Tundra Rhino, Arcane Nullifier X-21, and Malorne. Those are the ones I remember. There are dozens I don’t. It’s pure fun. Cast it early, cast it late, pair it with Antonidas for quick value on turn 9. I got an Angry Chicken once. That’s spectacular. It’s just chaos, discounted.

Combine it with duplicate. “I got a Kor’kron Elite! You killed it! Now I have two more!” Bliss. Absolute euphoria.

My current mage deck is so much fun. There’s enough chaos inside to make it interesting for me to play but not enough RNG to make me pull my hair out. My previous favorites, or at least the most played, have fallen to the wayside. Miracle Rogue is hurting and lost a lot of its fun. Ramp Druid is good but if your hand is full of Druids of the Claw and Ancients for four turns, it’s miserable. And the Shaman deck I want to play, a mix of spells of big creatures, isn’t how Blizzard wants the Shaman to be played (thanks Neptulon, you jerk). So I cobbled together some cards around Jaina, played some games, and then saw Trump had already made the deck I was playing with.

Our decks aren’t exactly the same – I don’t have Toshley or Flame Leviathan – but the core is identical. Unstable Portal, Duplicate, Sneed’s Old Shredder, Snowchugger (chuggachugga).

Here’s Trump’s deck:

The changes I made, to better suit how bad I am:

Trump's Countermeasures Enabled
  • 1 Acolyte of Pain, +1 Earthen Ring Farseer. Rush decks can give me trouble since I don’t draw into board clears (Flame Leviathan) so Earth Ring Farseer can keep me going.

  • 1 Sludge Belcher, +1 Abomination. Kind of the poor man’s Flame Leviathan, and it tends to be unexpected.

  • 1 Ragnaros, +1 Recombobulator. Ragnaros’s RNG can be unforgiving in clutch moments and this deck doesn’t hurt for late game. Recombobulator is almost as fun as Unstable Portal.

  • 1 Flame Leviathan, +1 Ysera. Cheap spells, cheap minions, immune to Big Game Hunter, SW:D. I like the Green Aspect.

  • 1-1 Toshley, +1 Black Knight. The Black Knight is good for chopping through taunts. If he gets duplicated, its even more fun.

It’s not perfect but it is really fun. Give it a shot, I think you’ll enjoy it.
Is it perfect? Of course not. But it’s really, really fun. The first time you get a super cheap Azure Drake or King Crush, you’re just giddy.

Hearthstone: Goblin vs Gnomes is now Live

The first expansion, Goblins vs Gnomes, is now live. Login to play and start collecting over 120 inventive new cards. Take a look at all the 120+ cards to check out their stats, deathrattle or battlecry details.

hearthstone-goblins-and-gnomes-logoIRVINE, Calif. –(BUSINESS WIRE)– Goblins vs Gnomes™, the explosive first expansion to Blizzard Entertainment’s fast-paced online strategy card game Hearthstone®: Heroes of Warcraft™, is available around the world beginning today! Introducing more than 120 new cards—including an all-new type of minion, Mechs—Goblins vs Gnomes opens up countless new strategic possibilities for Hearthstone players of every skill level.

In celebration of the expansion’s release, Blizzard is offering anyone who logs in to Hearthstone between the launch and December 19 three free Goblins vs Gnomes card packs—a triple-powered jolt of mayhem to help players jump-start their collections.

“Goblins vs Gnomes throws a big wrench into the Hearthstone works,” said Mike Morhaime , CEO and cofounder of Blizzard Entertainment . “Players are already having a blast coming up with inventive new strategies and deck ideas—we’re looking forward to seeing what happens now that they can put those plans into action.”

Goblins vs Gnomes throws players in the middle of the epic rivalry between Azeroth’s audacious goblin engineers and their equally “adventurous” gnomish counterparts—and these pint-sized tinkerers are ready to stir up trouble. Their incredible inventions and mechanical monstrosities are marvelous to behold … but when Hearthstone players deploy them in a duel, the results can be quite unpredictable.

Goblins vs Gnomes card packs are available in-game now for gold or real-world currency, priced the same as Expert card packs from the original Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft set. Players can also win Goblins vs Gnomes cards as rewards in the Arena or craft them using Arcane Dust earned from disenchanting cards in their collection.

Goblins vs Gnomes is available now in the Americas region for Windows, Mac, and iPad®, and will be available December 9 in the Europe and Asia regions. Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft and Goblins vs Gnomes are coming soon to Android tablet devices. For more information, visit www.playhearthstone.com.

With multiple games in development, Blizzard Entertainment has numerous positions currently available—visit http://jobs.blizzard.com for more information and to learn how to apply.

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