Kudos to you for doing this winky. I have thought about starting a thread like this myself, but I was uncertain whether I would be able to help everyone that would ask. With that said, as Murl0c put it, you have inspired me. If anyone that sees this thread asks winky for help and he is too busy or not available for whatever reason, I would be happy to try to help you. I have been high legend in standard and wild, and generally play to around d3-d5 once a month. Please send me a PM if you're interested and we can link up.
Any tips as to how to become better? I’ve been playing over a year and still feel so lost most times. I feel like I shouldn’t feel like such a newbie but I do just because I have not made it past Silver 5. I know I definitely need to put more time in.
It’s seriously great that you’re offering your time to help coach other players :)
Hey there! I can understand the frustration, it took me a few years to understand things that I’ve naturally learned either by someone else’s opinion/input or by trial and error.
Before Hearthstone, I’ve played a few games of Yu-Gi-Oh, the trading card game with a friend who owned them but we both were novices. Although we had fun playing, our fundamental understanding of concepts were non-existent. It’s like trying to learn to speak a language before you know the context of what you want to say, or when it’s appropriate to say it.
The same can be said in Hearthstone. I like to look at the game on two levels. The first “surface level” is knowing what people are currently playing and what the focus of the “meta” is, or what decks are popular at any given time. This is a helpful skill to acquire but going back to my language analogy, you’re still only trying to “speak” the Hearthstone language if you don’t know the second and more important level, the “fundamentals”.
There are many parts to learning the fundamentals in Hearthstone, most of it stems from trying to understand why any decision, at any given time is the “optimal” play. Is it correct to hold onto The Coin rather than using it sooner? Is it correct to ignore the five minions on your opponent’s side and go face? Why is it correct? I’ll tell you a secret, some of the decisions may not be obvious and some of them might be risky. However, they might be the best thing that will guarantee a victory, with a little luck on the side.
Some decisions come down to understanding what your deck is trying to achieve (i.e. are you more aggressive? Are you more control? In how many more turns can you set up a win? How many more turns do you think you can survive before its too late?). Some decisions might seem correct when they may not be. I try to ask the people I coach why they are considering certain plays. I also try to explain why certain plays are made based off of the information we received during the game etc.
A good exercise a buddy once gave me was to go watch a stream of a good Hearthstone player like Brian Kibler for example, pause the match throughout, and make a decision of what you would do with the cards available to play, then unpause the stream and see if the streamer is making the same plays. No one is perfect, including streamers but their knowledge is mostly deeper than ours because they’ve put in the time and are usually just that good.
Hope this helps a little, I can talk about Hearthstone philosophy all day haha. Happy to help as well!