Blizzard Entertainment have decided that vast changes are needed in Hearthstone Esports after surveying their Masters Qualifiers and Masters Tour competitors. It is their intention to make multiple changes to the structure of these events in hopes to help improve entry-level tournaments for aspiring Hearthstone players.
After completing a survey of the Masters Qualifiers and Masters Tour competitors, Blizzard Entertainment has decided that multiple changes are being planned to Hearthstone Esports in an effort to improve entry-level tournaments, one of the first stepping stones for aspiring Hearthstone players.
Blizzard’s survey involved Interviewing the competitors in order to understand any “pain points” of the current program, one main such “pain points” pointed out by competitors was the Specialist format. It consists of players using three variations of the same deck with only five different cards and all other cards in the deck the same. However, Hearthstone Masters tournaments continue to use the Conquest format; this requires that each deck is a different class and a deck is banned after it wins a game.
This will align with the World Championships, which already uses the Conquest format. This change in format will also see Blizzard reduce the number of Swiss rounds played from 12 to 9. Additionally, once the event reaches the top 8 players in Masters Tour, the format will change to single-elimination matches.
One result of these changes is that this new format will make each choice matter even more for competitors. Blizzard also announced that all Masters Qualifiers will be single-elimination tournaments going forward. The company hopes that doing this halves the amount of time these tournaments take. Another of the biggest planned changes is the way competitors receive invites to Masters Tour events.
In addition to these changes, Blizzard will be giving invites for Masters Tour events to the “Top 16 not-yet-invited ladder players from each region at the end of every month.” With all these changes to the number of players admitted to each event, Blizzard will also change their approach to prizing. With all these changes in mind, Hearthstone fans will hope the future is bright and that these changes will go a long way toward improving the Masters Qualifiers and Tour events overall.
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