Hearthstone and Football: The “Sports” of eSports

A holiday of sorts is coming this Sunday here in the States, as it will be Super Bowl Sunday. Though the National Football League only has their teams run 16 games each season, American Football remains the biggest sport in America, and the biggest moneymaker. And Super Bowl 50 is a particularly hyped affair, given the 2 quarterbacks leading each team.

Hearthstone is a bit of an emerging entertainment sport, as are all eSports. While firmly entrenched with gamers and other shades of nerd, Hearthstone is trying to branch out to the everyperson to get more players.

While there isn’t much in common between Hearthstone and football, there some similarities. Let’s try this futile exercise!

MCT is also involved in Deflategate.
  1. Decks/Teams have distinctive qualities
    • The Super Bowl this year features the Denver Broncos vs the Carolina Panthers. The Broncos are a team that rarely scores 20 points nowadays, and is known for a smothering defense, which wins its games. This is basically what the Grinder/Freeze Mage decks do, persist forever, while hiding behind a tough exterior defense. Control Warrior is another good comparison for the Broncos.
    • The Carolina Panthers are solid defensively as well, though somewhat leaky. They are known for controlling their attack, and can be quite explosive, with good burst. Ramp Druid?
  2. Taking turns
    • Easy comparison here. In football, teams take turns playing offense and defense. In Hearthstone, one player is making moves each turn, while the other is waiting around.
  3. Fun to watch
    • Football is not my favorite sport, but it might be the most entertaining/exciting to watch. Hearthstone happens to be watched much and often on Twitch, and is a very watchable video game.
  4. MCT = Turnovers
    • Turnovers happen in football when the ball is intercepted or fumbled (typically). Though losing the ball is never good, some turnovers are a lot worse than others. Losing the ball on your opponents side of the field is a lot better than losing the ball on your side of the field. Losing the ball with a big lead is not as bad as losing the ball in tie game. MCT is the same. Your 1/1 could be stolen when your opponent is nothing on the board. Or it could steal your 9-drop, with no clear board advantage on either side.
  5. Brawl = Fumble scrum
    • When a ball a football is fumbled, there is a mad scrum to fight for the ball. This is basically what happens when Brawl is played, all the minions fight in a mad scrum. Also the side with more players is more likely to win possession of the ball/board.
  6. Aggro Decks Blitz
    • A blitz in football is a defensive play, in which you try to take the quarterback down quickly, by sending more guys than your opponent defense can handle. And usually guys who blitz can run fast. Imagine your last loss to a face deck. Yeah looks like staring down a blitz.
  7. Cam Newton plays his whole hand on lethal
    • The Panthers’ quarterback, Cam Newton, is a polarizing figure. Outside of being a freak athlete, he celebrates everything, from big time touchdowns, to just getting a first down. This rubs a lot of people (not me) the wrong way, who believe he shouldn’t be showboating all the time. So, Cam Newton is the guy who just plays his entire hand, when he clearly has lethal on the board.
    • Playing all your cards on lethal is more like bat flipping in baseball. I have heard from Asia-server Hearthstone players, that playing the whole hand is more acceptable, to show your opponent what you had. Obviously in the NA server, this is seen as annoying and other disrespect. In baseball, bat flipping (showing off after a home run) is common in Korean Baseball, and in Latin Winter Leagues. In the MLB, bat flipping could get you hit with a fastball next time.
  8. Miracles happen
    • Extraordinary things happen in football. Unbelievable comebacks, missed extra points, Hail Mary’s. Extraordinary RNG happens in Hearthstone. Rag’s hitting face for lethal, the perfect Confessor Paletress spawn, getting that Sinister Strike in a miracle draw…
  9. WWE Storylines



3 thoughts on “Hearthstone and Football: The “Sports” of eSports

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