SeatStory Cup VII Hearthstone tournament decks, results, and analysis

SeatStory Cup VII Hearthstone tournament was played from 22 to 25 June 2017. It was a major LAN invitational tournament with 32 players, who played two group stages (32 players and 16 players in groups of four players) followed by top-8 single-elimination playoffs. The group stages were played in best-of-five Last Hero Standing with one ban format, and the playoffs were played in best-of-seven Last Hero Standing with one ban format. The tournament featured a $20,000 prize pool.

In this post, I will take a look at the decks and results of the playoff stage (top 8), including class distribution, archetypes, and tech choices.

The analysis here is shorter than usual, as SeatStory Cup was extraordinarily difficult to analyze: decks were not public and much of the casting was focused on memes over gameplay, so viewers were not told about bans, for example, and in some cases it was not even possible to find out what classes players had brought to the tournament. I believe there is nonetheless something of value in this brief overview.

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Dreamhack Summer 2017 Hearthstone Grand Prix top 16 decks, results, and analysis

Dreamhack Summer 2017 Hearthstone Grand Prix was played from 17 to 19 June 2017. It was a major LAN tournament with a 200-player Swiss (9 rounds) followed by top-16 single-elimination playoffs, all played in a best-of-five Last Hero Standing with one ban format. The tournament featured a $25,000 prize pool.

In this post, I will take a look at the decks and results of the playoff stage (top 16), including class distribution, archetypes, and tech choices.

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StarLadder Hearthstone StarSeries Season 3 (2017) Finals decks, results, and analysis

StarLadder Hearthstone StarSeries Season 3 Finals were played this weekend to determine the winner of this global major series with a $30,000 prize pool.

In this post, I will take a look at the decks and results of the LAN finals (top 8), including class distribution, archetypes, and archetype performance.

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Hearthstone Asia-Pacific Spring Playoffs 2017 Top 8 decks, results, and analysis

Hearthstone Asia-Pacific (APAC) Spring Playoffs 2017 were played this weekend to determine the final four participants for the upcoming Spring Championships.

In this post, I will take a look at the decks and results of the single-elimination playoffs stage (top 8), including class distribution, archetypes, archetype performance, and ban decisions.

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Hearthstone in-client tournament mode: an agile approach

Blizzard Entertainment’s Hearthstone is the market-leader in digital collectible card games. In addition to a considerable casual user base, the game is also a popular esports title with several small online tournaments played around the world every day and multiple global live tournaments taking place every month. According to Esports earnings data, the prize money awarded in Hearthstone tournaments is the seventh-largest amongst all esports games.

Despite all of this, the three-and-a-half-year-old game has no in-client competitive play support whatsoever. The developers have expressed interest in adding such support, but according to their latest statements, they are planning a full in-client tournament experience with no estimated completion date.

This seems to contradict all modern software development methodologies. We have agile sprints with new functionality delivered each sprint. We have minimum viable product (MVP) methodologies that identify the essential features and start by delivering those and expanding later. Yet, the development of Hearthstone does not seem to follow such methodologies.

What if it did?

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Hearthstone Americas Spring Playoffs 2017 Top 8 decks, results, and analysis

Hearthstone Americas Spring Playoffs 2017 were played on the weekend to determine America’s participants in the upcoming Spring Championships. The metagame is moving with every tournament, and that applied to this tournament as well.

In this post, I will take a look at the decks and results of the single-elimination playoffs stage (top 8), including class distribution, archetypes, archetype performance, and ban decisions.

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Hearthstone EU Spring Playoffs 2017 Top 8 decks, results, and analysis

Hearthstone Europe Spring Playoffs 2017 were played last weekend to determine Europe’s participants in the upcoming Spring Championships. The metagame is moving with every tournament, and that applied to this tournament as well.

In this post, I will take a look at the decks and results of the single-elimination playoffs stage (top 8), including class distribution, archetypes, archetype performance, and ban decisions.

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Hearthstone CN vs EU 2017 Top 8 decks, results, and analysis

Hearthstone China versus Europe Championship 2017 was played over the past two weeks, and what a tournament it was! Top-level players and lots of good games.

In this post, I will take a look at the decks and results of the playoffs stage (top 8), including class distribution, archetypes, archetype performance, and ban decisions.

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Broadcasting Hearthstone: Lessons from EU vs CN 2017

The annual EU vs CN invitational tournament is underway in China with a number of Europe’s and China’s best Hearthstone players competing for a huge grand prize.

Fitting the level of play, the production value of the tournament has far surpassed its Western counterparts, and features a number of spectator-friendly elements that I can only hope other broadcasters will take note of.

In this blog post, I will take a look at all the little details in the broadcasts. All images are from the official stream, and are used under fair use for discussion purposes.

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Dreamhack Austin 2017 Hearthstone Top 16 decks and analysis

The first major open Hearthstone Journey to Un’Goro tournament took place at Dreamhack Austin. With more than 200 players, including known pro players from around the world, competing over nine rounds of Swiss followed by top 16 playoffs, this tournament really put the meta to the test.

Obviously, as this tournament will be heavily analyzed, the meta in the following tournaments will probably look a lot different, but we nonetheless have a nice snapshot of things that work in a tournament environment right now.

Dreamhack published the decklists of the top 16 players – here they are, if you are looking for the lists themselves – so it is possible to get started with analysis straight away.

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