Remember your first time playing Hearthstone? I sure do. It was the first game I installed on my MacBook (back when I was still ignorant to the Master Race), and I played it every chance I could. When it was released on iOS, I found myself losing sleep because I couldn’t put my phone down, playing game after game until I ran out of battery or my phone got too hot.
When Hearthstone Classic was first announced, I admit that I wasn’t as excited about it as I was with news about the upcoming expansion and changes to Battlegrounds. I hadn’t clearly thought about what it would be like to play Classic format in the current year. But Hearthstone Classic is now live, and after playing a few games with my old decks, I was overcome with more nostalgia than I was expecting. It felt more like a reunion with old friends rather than simply playing an older version of Hearthstone.
All my early Hearthstone memories came rushing back to me in some kind of Ratatouille moment while I was playing Classic. I rebuilt some of the first decks I ever used in the game–Inner Fire Priest, Zoolock, and Miracle Rogue. I even included some wonky cards in them like I used to, slotting in a Mind Control Tech or a Sacrificial Pact in lieu of cards that I knew would work better. I just wanted to have fun like I did as a Hearthstone noob in 2014.
Surprisingly, I didn’t end up losing as much as I expected with my poorly made decks. While these were definitely the unoptimized decks I ran when I could barely get past Rank 19, I now had the wisdom and experience of having played Hearthstone for nearly seven years. I knew which cards to play and when, and I had a better idea of what my opponents would play based on their mana curve, opening plays, and play style.
This is what I meant by Hearthstone Classic feeling like a reunion with old friends–getting to see your buddies after a long time always calls for a long day of telling stories and looking back on what’s changed. In Hearthstone Classic, I’ve reunited with my noob decks and I’m letting them know that I’ve gotten better at the game. No more losing to my own misplays or failing to read my opponents’ plays.
(Me when I know the opponent has a Jaraxxus and I have a SacPac in hand.)
As if to complete the nostalgia package, a lot of popular Hearthstone streamers from 2014 also began playing Classic as soon as it went live. Even streamers who haven’t played a game of Constructed in years like Savjz and Reynad are streaming Classic, and seeing world champions Thijs and Firebat playing Classic decks takes me straight back to the YouTube and Twitch of 2014. Everyone’s looking older, but these Classic format games and streams feel like a small escape to more youthful days and simpler times. It’s a nostalgia trip I can get behind.
Hearthstone Classic is now live, and you can collect cards for the format through Classic packs. Classic format will function in the same way as Standard and Wild when completing quests for your progression/rewards track. For more details on the Classic format, you can check out Hearthstone’s official announcement.
And now, I cede the final word to Ben Brode, former game director for Hearthstone from 2014 to 2018.
thank fuck now everyone leave me alone https://t.co/cql6roqIj1
— Ben Brode (@bbrode) March 25, 2021
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