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hearthstone deconstructing heroic tavern brawl


Hearthstone is in a quiet period at the moment – an all-too-familiar lull in between adventures and expansions where the meta is figured out and we know that there’s more on the horizon. Blizzard’s been toying with new modes, new heroes, and new promotions to get people on board, which makes the reveal of the Heroic Tavern Brawl a bit of a head-scratcher.

We hope that our Heroic Brawl scratches the competitive itch of the players looking for a high risk, high reward experience. Heroic Brawl is coming soon, so keep an eye out for updates.

Blizzard’s explanation lines up with concerns from the more core Hearthstone players feeling like Blizzard’s focusing on the casual experience. For 1000 gold or $10, you get to play up to 12 games of constructed, Standard Hearthstone. However, if you lose three games,  you’re out. This should sound familiar to Arena players because this Brawl looks to be built upon the back of the Arena infrastructure. Your rewards will range from a measly card pack if you don’t win any games, to an absurd prize pool of golden legendary cards, arcane dust, gold, and 50 card packs.

Don’t get ahead of yourself, the odds of reaching 12 wins in a cutthroat competition like this is almost impossible, but the allure of the reward is all-too enticing for many players. To fully understand how a Brawl like this will develop over a few short things, it’s important to nail down several key features.


Mid-Range Shaman is the undisputed best deck in Hearthstone right now. It has more tools at its disposal than any other deck or class in the game, plays phenomenally on curve with well-costed cards, and has plenty of options for aggressive and defensive decks alike. This means that the entire meta-game for Heroic Tavern Brawl may center around playing this deck, countering this deck, and maybe even countering the counters. You’ll see Mid-Range Shamans. You’ll see Mid-Range Shamans that are slightly modified to deal with other Mid-Range Shamans. You’ll see lots of Mages of every variety. Control Warrior seems safe.

There’s no reason to try “crazy” Priest or Warlock decks because of the entry fee (unless you’re a big streamer). Everyone’s playing to win, and to win as many games as possible. This means that besides the decks I listed off earlier, you simply might not see many other archetypes being played.

I’m very interested at the statistics that will come from Heroic Tavern Brawl, as I’m sure they will be a complete shift from all things Hearthstone – be it Arena, constructed, or Tavern Brawls in general. I definitely feel like this is testing the waters for some semblance of a competitive mode down the line. It’s a good start, but it’s not what everyone wants out of a tournament mode. As detailed on The Angry Chicken podcast, a lot of what should go into a good tournament mode is very dependent on the Hearthstone client’s capabilities – capabilities we aren’t sure of and are only left to assume isn’t the easiest game to work with.

Blizzard’s taking an interest at targeting the hardcore player, something that doesn’t happen a lot in Hearthstone. Period. Being a Tavern Brawl, this Brawl can also expect to be seen down the line as we get new expansions, cards, and entire meta-games. The Brawl isn’t launching this week, but it will be before BlizzCon, so expect it within a week or two, and start saving up some gold.

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