Hearthstone’s newest patch 20.0.2 returned two older heroes to the Battlegrounds mode.
With their inclusion, there are now 56 heroes to select from overall. And at the start of each game, players can pick from four (or two if they don’t have the Battlegrounds pass). With multiple characters to choose from, understanding the best options and how to play them will increase your odds at claiming the ultimate victory in the mode.
Here are the best heroes in Hearthstone Battlegrounds to look out for in the selection screen.
The best tempo heroes
Tempo heroes can be defined by their ability to gather large boards quickly either due to how they purchase multiple early minions and rack up damage in the early turns. Tempo heroes that spend the beginning stages of the game buying minions can usually catch up by leveling up in multiple successive turns.
Arch-Villain Rafaam is a tempo hero that can fill your board up quickly since he steals the first opposing minion slain in each combat. Due to his potent Hero Power, you can skip leveling up in the early turns and then catch up later. The Hero Power can be used to leverage your spare gold and match the rest of the lobby in levels.
You can usually begin leveling up around turn three. Once you do, you’ll spend the following turns leveling up and pressing Hero Power, adding a new minion to your warband each turn while not falling behind on experience.
As the most skill-testing hero on this overall list, Jandice awards those who best understand her Hero Power. While her ability to swap minions back and forth works best with tokens in the shifting minion pool due to the ability to obtain an absurd amount of triples, her Hero Power has many powerful strategies in each minion tribe.
With Dragons, you can recycle Battlecries to bolster your board with bonus stats when you control Kalecgos. If you have Demons, you can refresh your Annihilan Battlemaster and Nathrezim Overseer to reach high power and health totals. If you’re using Nomi, any Elementals that get swapped into the shop receive a stat boost equal to the amount of Elementals you played in that game.
Millhouse Manastorm has a vastly different playstyle compared to other heroes on this list. Millhouse’s leveling curve is different due to his augmented gold costs for units, rerolling, and tiering up, meaning he takes a bit of practice to get right. Similar to Rafaam, you want to spend the early turns getting a powerful board and the later turns catching up in levels.
When you usually play Millhouse, you should avoid weak pairs of minions and consider buying individually strong units and pairs. Rolling with Millhouse has a heft cost of two gold as opposed to the usual one.
Millhouse works best with Elementals, Pirates, Beasts, and Murlocs since the mentioned tribes have either tokens or economy augmentation, which will offset the major weakness of his passive Hero Power.
Silas’ ticket system allows you to augment your usual spending patterns of buying the best minions and instead hunting down Darkmoon Tickets to get powerful units of your current Tavern Tier. While this doesn’t mean you should purposely buy bad minions too often, or else you run the risk of losing too much tempo and falling desperately behind, you can consider buying mid-tier units to set up a third ticket purchase on your swing turn.
If you get an extra unit early on turn three, you can spend the following turns gaining massive win streaks or leveling faster than your opponents. If you save your third ticket purchase for the future, you can try to find specific Tavern Tier three to five units to find a direction earlier than the rest of the lobby.
The best economy heroes
Economy heroes allow players to gain a gold advantage either by giving you free gold or letting you obtain minions at a cheaper cost.
Captain Hooktusk has had a tumultuous history. She was the most broken hero when she launched and then was reworked into irrelevance. Now that she’s back in the hero pool with a nerfed version of her original zero-cost Hero Power, Hooktusk returns to join the other top-tier heroes in Battlegrounds.
Trash for Treasure works best with tokens (Alleycat and Tide Hunter) or powerful Battlecries (Refreshing Anomaly and Deck Swabbie) since you can either use the extra unit to become a more powerful minion or reap the benefits of the Battlecry while fishing for better stats.
Any character that can mitigate bad RNG will always be a successful pick. Captain Hooktusk’s Hero Power fits this bill by either effectively giving you a better initial shop or snowballing a high-quality tavern into a quick victory.
Forest Warden Omu
Similar to Elise Starseeker before she got nerfed into oblivion, Forest Warden Omu’s economy-based Hero Power will often propel you to high tiers quickly and help mitigate any potential bad rolls. Understanding when to power level with Omu will help you find success with her. She’s at her best when tribes that can help bolster early economy (Pirates, Elementals, Beasts, and Murlocs) are in the pool.
The major decision point with Omu is whether you level up on turn two or buy a unit and level up every other turn. You can perform a second-round Tavern Up when you either have a Token, Sellemental, or Deck Swabbie since you’ll have an extra gold available to purchase a minion.
Despite the stat nerf her Hero Power received, Maiev remains a strong contender in the game mode due to the consistency her Hero Power brings. You can Hero Power as soon as turn one if you choose to do so if you’re given a proper start. And you can oftentimes set up triples multiple turns in advance due to the Dormant side of her Hero Power.
While Maiev is considered an economy hero due to her power to find consistent triples, she plays out similarly to a tempo hero due to how slow her initial leveling curve is compared to other average heroes.
The best combat heroes
Combat heroes are characters that can bolster their warband either through the ability to grant their minions stats, keywords, or special abilities either for free or at a gold cost.
Ak’Akir is one of those generally good heroes that doesn’t require too much practice to be effective with. A free Divine Shield on your strongest minion will often turn fights in your favor due to the effective bonus stats its granting. In addition, Windfury can sometimes be massive with Cleave effects or abilities granted when attacking like Pirates.
As the hero with the least conventional curve to make the list but the one with a powerful scaling Hero Power, C’thun requires a specific play pattern to be successful. To find victory with this Old God, you need to use his hero ability every turn, including the first turn. This means you’ll be spending your early turns finding a token (Beast/Murloc) or Sellemental to grant you units while your Hero Power will increase your odds at victory.
An example early C’thun curve looks like this:
-Turn one: Hero Power and roll if you don’t find either a token or Sellemental. Freeze if you find either.
-Turn two: Hero Power, buy the token or Sellemental, sell one, then Hero Power. Your remaining minion will now receive +2/+2.
-Turn three: Go to Tavern Tier two and Hero Power again.
-Turn four: Like every other turn, you use your Hero Power. At this point, depending on the minions in Bob’s Tavern and your health total, you may either go to Tavern Tier three and Hero Power or buy a second unit to start scaling with stats.
Aside from hoping for Beasts, Murlocs, and Elementals to find the best early curve, Dragons and Mechs are powerful tribes since they both have strong Divine Shield units to rely on for your mid game at Tavern Tier three. If you don’t see at least three of these five mentioned tribes in the pool, consider skipping out on picking C’thun.
Ragnaros the Firelord
As another nerfed hero on this list, Ragnaros still has effectiveness due to the wealth of free stats he gains in the later stages of the game. The Firelord’s strength is mainly when token-based minion tribes (Mechs, Beasts, Demons) are in the pool since they help you reach his second Hero Power sooner. Aside from Mechs, Elementals are also a good tribe to look out for with Ragnaros due to both tribes having a sizable portion of Divine Shield minions.
The Lich King
As the most simple hero on this list, the Lich King will give Reborn to a minion of your choice at the cost of no gold. To best use this Hero Power, look toward giving your best early Deathrattle minions the powerful keyword, like Spawn of N’zoth, Kaboom Bot, or Scallywag. If you don’t have Deathrattle minions, give Reborn to your minion with the highest attack stat.
One specific unit that works well with The Lich King is Khadgar since Reborn counts as a summoning ability, giving you multiple copies of that minion if it dies before Khadgar.
Battlegrounds’ next major update will occur at a later patch within the Forged in the Barrens expansion cycle and will bring in a unique minion type of Quilboars.