Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft RevisitedView All Reviews
Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft is a digital card game based in the Warcraft universe. This wiki strives to be a database of all cards across all adventures, expansions, and Tavern Brawls. Check out those, as well as artist pages, tips, and more!
Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft received only 3/5 stars from us in December 2013. That was the beta version. The game is now officially released for PC and Mac, even if the transition was barely noticeable. Nothing was deleted, so there was no reset of the cards and achievements, and with a free-to-play game, the difference between open beta and a published game is not massive. In the meantime, a few cards have changed, and the ranking system has been revised. Otherwise, everything that was noted in the old article still applies. Nevertheless, we would give the game a better rating today. So what has changed?
Shortly after we wrote the Hearthstone review in December, a patch came out that we just didn’t want to download. And a complete reinstallation of the game was unsuccessful. But since we thought it was mediocre anyway, we didn’t put much energy into fixing the problems.
Until there was a weekend when we had nothing to do and came across a video on YouTube in which the players Total Biscuit and Trump played a deck of 24 Legendaries, i.e., legendary creatures, for fun during Blizzcon.
The video itself is very funny. But it was important for us that it was the first time we saw Trump. His way of explaining the moves made sense, so we got a little more information. We had heard from several sides that our rating of the game was premature, and we wanted to deal with it again.
We found out that Trump had just started the project to achieve a legendary rank without spending any money (the top tier in league games). We watched the first couple of videos, and after a short while, we were totally fascinated. The depth of the game that was missing during our test was clearly there. We just hadn’t noticed.
So we tried to get the installation problem fixed and downloaded the current installer. The issue still occurred, but there was an entry in the FAQs that helped us to solve the problem. My virus scanner had apparently deactivated a service Battle.net needs.
We rebuilt our decks (which was tiring as hell) and played a few games. And lo and behold: there was depth. Our mistake had been playing only the unranked games. There, you compete against other newbies who have as little idea of the game as you do. Or, in exceptional cases, you meet good players who want to try a new deck and then casually wipe you out. In ranked matches, you move up through the levels until you win as much as you lose, so you automatically end up with opponents that match your strength.
The games are incredibly exciting. Because little by little, you get to know all the cards that are being played and find out how to use them, so they make sense. And this is the only way to recognize the constantly changing predominant deck types and to develop counters against these strategies, which will, of course, soon become obsolete again, as the metagame is constantly evolving. These are the things you will never notice as a casual gamer or a novice.
The arena also only really makes sense if you have already played with constructed decks. Because only then you understand the strategies and strengths of the cards. It is rather unsuitable for beginners.
Of course, there are still a few points of criticism which we will continue to uphold. First, there should be a way to win more tickets instead of card packs in the arena. And it should be possible to switch the speech output off without removing all other noises. Fortunately, the English voice output is not as penetrating as, for example, the German one, so we can give it a pass. But these are the little cosmetic things that can make a game beautiful. And so our rating today would be somewhere between four and five stars.
If you like tactical card games and take the time to really delve deep in Hearthstone, you will find a game that can fascinate. And the one where it is possible to get to the top rank without money. Trump has now done it twice. Once with the mage, once more with the shaman. Unfortunately, in the meantime, his video producer had jumped off, so the videos about the shaman only appear one by one. The complete mage run can be found on YouTube. And you can learn a lot about Hearthstone there.
If you want to play the game, we recommend you watch some of his videos. Our understanding of the game has improved immensely!
But be careful if you play Hearthstone as a casual game, our previous rating will apply. It develops new qualities only when you take the game seriously and spend a lot of time on it.
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