How To Play Hearthstone
I've been hearing a lot of people complain about how difficult it is to get in to Hearthstone. Blizzard does a good job of showing everyone the basics of the game but then throws them headfirst into the fray against people who have been playing for months or years. I know without a doubt I've played against people who are just starting that day. So how does one become competent? How does one begin the Noob Evolution of Hearthstone.
Step 1) Unlock All Basic Cards- You're already at a pretty large disadvantage in that you don't have the card base most players have so you need to make up for that as quickly as possible. In order to do this you'll need to play a lot with each class in order to level them up. Just stick to "Solo Adventures" and playing against AI. The AI is well balanced and can make for some fun and fair games. This will also help you understand what classes you like and what your play style is.
Step 2) Choosing Your Deck- So you've unlocked the basic cards but now what? I won't lie to you it's difficult to find a fun and easy to play deck with nothing but the basic cards. I wholeheartedly recommend spending $5 on the Welcome Bundle. However, if that is not possible no fear! Here are some great decks for complete beginners who have nothing more than the basic cards.
Step 3) Understand The Lingo- WHAT THE HELL IS EVERYONE TALKING ABOUT?! What is "face" or "tempo" or what the heck is a paladin?? There's a lot of specific technical lingo or jargon so in order to fully understand it let's break down some key terms.
Class: These are the different hero powers and decks available to you. They include Paladin (a holy warrior), Mage (spells, pew pew), Hunter (dude with big pets), Warlock (evil mage), Priest (super holy mage), Warrior (dude with no magic), Rogue (girl who will steal your purse), Druid (dude who is one with nature... ya brah...), and Shaman (dude who is one with the elements). Each has unique strengths and weaknesses.
Face: This refers to your opponents hero. Once you get your opponent down to 0 health you win the game. Most often this term is used in the phrase "hit face" meaning that you ignore an opponents minions and just hit their hero for direct damage.
Board: Board refers to the area in which minions are played. The term "develop board" means playing more minions. When comparing "board strength" it in turn relates to how strong each player's minions are.
Tempo: A somewhat vague term it often refers to how a match appears to be going. When a player appears to have the upper hand they have the tempo. A common deck archetype is a "tempo mage" who prefers to have one great turn to "swing the tempo" or take the upper hand in the game.
Drop: Many players refer to cards as a "six drop" or a "one drop." The number signifies how much mana it takes to play that card while the term drop refers to the action of dropping that minion onto the board. So a minion that costs one mana is a one drop.
Aggro: Short for aggressive. It is a deck or play style that focuses most on dealing damage quickly to end the game.
Control: A deck or play style that focuses most on mitigating damage and waiting till the end of the game to drop powerful but expensive minions in order to win.
Meta: Refers to the current makeup of the game. When someone says "it's good in the current meta" it means that with the current cards and play styles it is good. The game is constantly changing so in turn the meta is constantly changing.
Ramp: Used to describe a specific druid play style. Druid's have the unique ability to gain more mana than other classes. When a druid succeeds in gaining a lot of mana crystals quickly they have successfully ramped.
Trade: When you sacrifice a low value minion for a high value minion. If you have a minion that has 1 attack and 1 health and have him attack a minion that has 7 attack and 1 health you have "traded into him."
Step 4) Understanding How to Control- How to control a game is incredibly difficult and hard to fit in only 1000 word limit. Instead I produced a couple of videos to explain some basics.
In the first game I used a Control Priest
In the second game I used a Midrange Shaman
Step 5) Watch Streamers- I harp on this a lot because I think it is one of the most critical ideas that so many people overlook. Get over your pride no one wants to see that shit here. Throw it out like that super hilarious joke you're friends have heard a million times. Throw it out like Trump has thrown out the integrity and sanity with his presidency.
Instead... WATCH STREAMERS. If you want a list of streamers to check out read one of my older posts.
Step 6) Play! At the end of the day Hearthstone is just a game. It's a game I very much enjoy but it's just a game. In order to truly get good at the game you have to play it. Play it with friends play it to ends, play it Kens and play it with Rens. Play it with random individuals and play with computers. JUST PLAY IT. The key to this is to try and not get frustrated. When starting out you will see players with much better cards than you and you'll think "they only win because they have better cards." Just breathe... I promise it gets better. It's like when a friend hands you a bottle of tequila. The first little bit is pretty difficult to down but the next morning you're pretty sure you had a hell of a time.
If anyone is interested in coaching I am willing to coach via skype or twitch for $10 an hour. I'm not at legend rank right now but I do plan on making a major push next month during spring break. I am currently in the top 2% of players.