Oct 14 2015 - 2:30 pm

The best of the worst misplays in Hearthstone history

Hearthstone misplays are a beautiful thing because they reveal the real distance between us proletariats and pro players
Dot Esports

Hearthstone misplays are a beautiful thing because they reveal the real distance between us proletariats and pro players. If I watch a game of high-level League of Legends I’ll be overwhelmed by the control, speed, and skill-shot accuracy which I could just never muster. When I watch a game of Hearthstone, I see people trying to play the right cards in the right order. That isn’t so abstract! We can all play perfect games of Hearthstone. It’s the same reason we see a handful of amateurs at World Series of Poker final tables every year.

And like us, pro players are also capable of some tremendously stupid things. When we watch Hearthstone misplays, we remember that they too can forget basic things, miss obvious lethal, and screw up crucial sequencing. For a moment they’re crumpled in front of their computer questioning how smart they really are—just like the rest of us.

We've combed through Hearthstone's short history to find the very best of the worst misplays. This list isn’t a condemnation, it’s a celebration for how punishing this little card game can be.

Ekop misses lethal, then loses the game

In Hearthstone there’s something called fatigue damage. When your opponent is out of cards they’ll take exponential damage each time they reach to draw a card.

Here, Jan “Ekop” Palys has Alexander “Kolento” Malsh at 7 health. Ekop has two fireballs in his hand, but because of Loatheb he can only cast one. Doesn’t matter though, because once he clicks "End Turn" Kolento will take one point of fatigue damage. All he has to do is cast his fireball to face, and GG.

Then the turn timer starts to tick down. Is he BMing? That Ekop! Always rubbing his opponent’s face in it.

Oh God, no, I don’t think he sees it.

Ekop Alexstraza’s his face, clicks “End Turn,” sees that fatigue damage, and facepalms until the world disappears.

That other Ekop misplay that’s actually worse

I still don’t know the story behind this. Did he missclick? Did he think he had more health and was BMing with Frostbolt? Who knows. The end result was a pro player inexplicably killing himself in the middle of a giant tournament much to the enjoyment and befuddlement of everyone watching. 

Trump forgets about Explosive Trap in front of everybody

(Sorry, this embed was not found.)Misplaying in stream is bad because you face the wrath of Twitch chat. Misplaying in a tournament is worse because you face the wrath of Twitch chat and also cost yourself some money. Misplaying at a Blizzard-sanctioned event, however, using new cards at an expansion unveiling with the entire Hearthstone community watching is probably the worse. In the above clip, Jeffrey “Trump” Shih is going against James “Firebat” Kostesich during the unveiling of The Grand Tournament. Trump is at two health but then draws into an Antique Healbot. Hooray stabilization!

But before playing his Healbot, Trump attacks Firebat’s face, triggering the super obvious Explosive Trap, and depleting his final two health points. Considering there was something like 300,000 people watching, that was probably a bad move.

Reynad Time Rewinder’s his Flamewaker, destroying gis only out

Let’s be real, Andrey “Reynad” Yanyuk was probably going to lose this game anyway. He was staring down a stealthed Whirling Zap-o-Matic, which is a pretty devastating board presence. His only hope is to play his Flamewaker, cast his Time Rewinder on something, and hope for some exceptionally lucky RNG.

Down comes the Flamewaker, Reynad loses his brain for a moment and casts the Time Rewinder on the Flamewaker, which doesn’t trigger its effect, meaning he spent four mana doing absolutely nothing.

Again, he probably wasn’t going to win, but watching Reynad sheepishly drop his Flamewaker again and admit defeat is super funny. My favorite Hearthstone missplays are the ones that happen early in a turn and force the player to make an obviously inefficient move afterwards.

Trump forgets about Explosive Trap, again

We’re not trying to pick on our boy Trump. He’s a talented player. But he’s died to Explosive Trap in a number of high-profile ways. Everybody on the planet knows that if you have less than two health you shouldn’t attack a Hunter’s face while they have a secret up, lest you face the wrath of Rexxar. This Hunter had two traps up, Trump was at one health and had a Truesilver Champion which restores two health when you attack.

All he has to do is attack the Hunter’s face, get healed up to three by the Truesilver, and then take two damage from the Explosive Trap. From there he could kill the opponent with his board.

But for some reason Trump forgets this for two seconds and attacks with a minion first, handing his opponent a totally avoidable victory. It’s the most cringe-inducing misplay ever, mostly because Trump realizes how badly he messed up the second he lets go.

Kolento Kills himself with Mistress of Pain

(Sorry, this embed was not found.)Guess what happens when you have a Mistress of Pain and an Auchenai Soulpriest? Well, if you attack with the Mistress of Pain she’ll keep dealing damage to your face til you’re dead. Hope everyone remembers that.

Alexander “Kolento” Masch forgot about this rule and dropped an Auchenai on board. Everyone gasps. There’s no way he’s actually going to do it right?

Oh dear.

Kripparrian eats crow

I love Octavian “Kripparrian” Morosan. Maybe it’s because he streams all through the night, which is when I have the free time to watch Twitch. But I also love his demeanor. He’s salty, sure, but also very knowledgeable, and never takes things too seriously. 

That’s why I love this video so much. Most of these other misplays were uploaded by third-party YouTube users, but this one comes directly from Kripparrian’s channel. He highlights one of the worst games of Hearthstone he’s ever played, and encourages you to laugh at his expense. That moment where he heals the Northshire before attacking with it is so goddamn funny.

Never change, Kripp.

Screengrab via PlayHearthstone/YouTube

Check out our two-part interview with the world's most likable Hearthstone player: Jeffrey "Trump" Shih.


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