Weekly Hearthstone Roundup #10 (Feb 10 – Feb 16)

Last month in review: #6 – Jan 13 – Jan 19, 2017 #7 – Jan 20 – Jan 26, 2017 #8 – Jan 27 – Feb 2, 2017 #9 – Feb 3 – Feb 10, 2017 Weekly Hearthstone Roundup is a series summarizing last week in Hearthstone. By making a compilation of the news regarding game, teams, […]

Last month in review:

Introduction

Weekly Hearthstone Roundup is a series summarizing last week in Hearthstone. By making a compilation of the news regarding game, teams, pro players, ladder, community etc. we try to make catching up easier for those of you who don’t follow the HS news every day.

If you feel that we’ve missed something important or that we didn’t properly cite the source, let us know in the comments and we’ll fix it right away.

General/Game News

  • A Year of Mammoth Proportions! – New Standard year was announced. A lot of changes coming to Hearthstone – 8 Neutral cards (including Ragnaros the Firelord and Sylvanas Windrunner) are going to rotate into the Wild with a full Dust refund (it means that if you own a Golden version of the Legendary, you’ll get 3,200 Dust!), we’re going to see 3 expansions this year (~130 cards each), daily log-in rewards, new Rogue Hero and much more. I’ll be making a summary post of everything we know about the rotation, expect it tomorrow!
  • Ranked “floors” introduced, 2 cards getting nerfed in late February patch – There is a patch scheduled, which should be out in about 10 days. First big change is introduction of ranked floors at rank 15, 10 and 5. It means that similarly to rank 20 or Legend, once you get there, you can’t fall out from that bracket. It’s a great change for people who want to take break from climb and playtest different decks without worrying about tanking down their rank. It will also make ladder climbs significantly easier, as “more stars” will be in the system (people who lose at the bottom of rank 5, for example, will generate an extra star, because they can’t lose one and the opponent does gain one). There are also 2 nerfs announced – Small-Time Buccaneer is getting nerfed to 1 health and Spirit Claws is getting a mana cost increase (up to 2). Those are big hits for the “Pirate package” ran by every aggressive deck, and more specifically hit against Aggro Shaman. You can read my in-depth thoughts about the nerfs here.
  • Developer Insights: Live Stream Q&A – Year of the Mammoth scheduled for February 21 – This is the second time when Hearthstone devs will gather for the live Q&A session. If you want to ask about anything, you can Tweet your questions at @PlayHearthstone with hashtag #QA, leave comment under the blog post or just join them live and ask your question in the Twitch chat. I’ll probably make a summary post after the live stream, just like last time!
  • Max McCall talks about combo decks – To summarize his post, he says that they don’t have problems with combo decks as long as they aren’t very popular. If one combo decks gets too popular, constantly playing against it stops being fun and starts being really tiring, as combo decks tend to be very noninteractive. It probably means that if we ever see another popular combo deck, it will also get nerfed like each one so far.
  • Max McCall responded to post about Charge and Taunt being bad for Hearthstone – He defended the mechanics, saying that neither of them is inherently bad for Hearthstone. He mostly talked about Charge, saying that a well designed charge card is not a problem, but the mechanic can easily be abused for the combo/OTK purposes and that’s where it’s bad.
  • Dean Alaya (IksarHS) talks about the nerfs, Jade concerns, and the different Hearthstone design teams – Since his answers were spread over different reddit comments, I’ve linked the HearthPwn summary instead.
  • Hearthstone team sent Valentine cards to multiple community members!
  • This Week’s Tavern Brawl is: Blood Magic! – You build your own deck, in which every spell costs health instead of mana. It means that you can cast spells as long as you have enough health for that. Violet Illusionist is MVP of this Brawl, as it prevents self-damage (you cast spells for free, basically). Animated Armor does similar thing for Mage, reducing damage to 1/spell. Two most popular and probably most powerful decks are Mage with Illusionists, a lot of card draw and burn and OTK Paladin, which can kill the opponent as soon as turn 1 – not every game, of course, but it happens (it’s my favorite deck in this Brawl so far).
  • HCT Championship Card Back was revealed – You will be able to get this card back for attending the HCT event in Bahamas next month!

Ladder/Decks/Competitive

  • ViciousSyndicate: Data Reaper Report #38 was released – Once again, no big shifts on the ladder this week – the only significant change is one new archetype getting pretty popular lately – Aggro Rogue. Top 8 decks on the ladder are: Aggro Shaman, Pirate Warrior, Dragon Warrior, Midrange Jade Shaman, Dragon Priest, Miracle Rogue, Reno Mage and RenoLock. Top 8 decks on the high ranked ladder are: Aggro Shaman, Pirate Warrior, Midrange Jade Shaman, Dragon Warrior, Reno Mage, Control Shaman, RenoLock and Aggro Rogue. It seems like Aggro Rogue is getting better then Miracle Rogue in the places where it really matters (=high ranks). The question is – will that trend continue once Small-Time Buccaneer gets nerfed?
  • MetaStats: Standard Meta Snapshot Week 5 (Feb 6 – Feb 12) was released – Top 7 most successful decks right now, according to MetaStats, are: Pirate Warrior, Aggro Shaman, Jade Druid, Dragon Warrior, Midrange Shaman, Miracle Rogue, RenoLock.
  • TempoStorm: Standard Meta Snapshot #23 (February 12) was released, along with the Meta Snapshot Breakdown video – Top 8 decks on the ladder, according to TempoStorm, are: Aggro Shaman, Midrange Jade Shaman, Reno Mage, Pirate Warrior, RenoLock, Dragon Priest, Miracle Rogue and Control Warrior.
  • ViciousSyndicate: Game Duration During The Mean Streets of Gadgetzan Meta – vS has analyzed the game durations ever since Standard’s release with Whispers of the Old Gods. As it turns out, One Night in Karazhan meta was generally the slowest one, with average game lasting 10 turns (or 490 seconds) in October. Gadgetzan meta was the fastest one, with 9 turns (or 446 seconds) per game on average. But it seems like the January meta slowed down a bit, to 9.4 turns (or 467 seconds), which is relatively slow in comparison to some other metas. However, the problem with the current meta is that it’s very polarized – while Reno vs Reno matchups often go to fatigue (prolonging the average by a lot), games against Aggro often end by turn 5.

eSports/Teams/Tournaments

Community/Podcasts/Videos

Closing

If there are any more news from last week we might have missed, let us know in the comments. And, once again, if you have any suggestions for this series (or for the site in general!) we’d really appreciate if you’d let us know.

Good luck on the ladder and until next time!