HCT – Americas Summer Playoffs Feedback

Play Mode Discussion
Thank you to our players and viewers who participated in and watched the Hearthstone Championship Tour Americas Summer Playoffs on Sept. 16 and 17.

Over the course of the event, playoff venues experienced multiple DDoS attacks and equipment malfunctions that disrupted the tournament. As a result, affected players were unfortunately required to restart games due to disconnections. This also caused extended wait times between games. While we made efforts to address the issues as they were occurring, we want to be clear that the resulting experience this past weekend was not acceptable, and we sincerely apologize to the competitors who were adversely affected. There is still much we can do to improve the overall competitive experience, and to reduce the number of issues that can occur.

We are currently discussing several improvements that we would like to implement as early as the start of the next Hearthstone Championship Tour season. We are also going to reevaluate equipment requirements and venue capabilities to make sure we deliver a better competitive experience for our players, as well as design additional fallbacks in case of disconnects. The Hearthstone Championship Tour has grown over the years into a circuit with high expectations, and we are continually striving to deliver a better experience. We would not have been able to build this program without your participation, both as players and viewers, and your feedback is valuable as we build out our plans for Hearthstone Championship Tour 2018.

Please keep in mind that this is not the end of the conversation—we’re going to do better and we’ll fill you in on our progress as we move forward. Reach out to us on the forums, Facebook or Twitter if you have any feedback about #HCT to share. We look forward to hearing from you, now and into the future of competitive Hearthstone.
Thank you for this post. I look forward to seeing improvements. Will you be compensating players in any way who had to spend money to travel and were unable to play optimally due to connection issues?
09/19/2017 05:09 PMPosted by Aratil
Reach out to us on Facebook or Twitter if you have any feedback about #HCT to share. We look forward to hearing from you, now and into the future of competitive Hearthstone.


You mentioned Facebook and Twitter, but I don't use those. I hope feedback here is ok. I mean, it is the official forum after all.

Anyway, we've been enjoying the videos of the casts on the Hearthstone Tournaments youtube channel. Raven and Sottle are our favorite casters. So much great chemistry between them. They truly are the Abbot and Costello of Hearthstone. They are informative, entertaining, and hilarious. We also like TJ paired with Frodan. (TJ's much better than the condescending jerk they had before).

Watching the videos, we saw no evidence of the issues that the players experienced, so kudos to Hearthstone Tournaments channel for the great editing. But I do hope that the issues get corrected. I'm sure with Activision/Blizzard's virtually unlimited resources, the right systems can be put in place to be able to run a smoother event. Yoo CAN Doo EET!!!!

Oh, and the match between bLAKER and Tarei was unbelievable... some of the most exciting games I've seen.
09/19/2017 05:22 PMPosted by rayC
Thank you for this post. I look forward to seeing improvements. Will you be compensating players in any way who had to spend money to travel and were unable to play optimally due to connection issues?


Everyone gets one Grand Tournament card pack.
They prefer 3rd party sites. Downvote because it is true :)
Thank you for your response. But i still think we need some sorte of competitive hearthstone insight video ether on YouTube or twitch in other to have a constructive conversation, with players, viewers and every 1 that care about hearthstone overall. So many question need to be answer like number of venue, online cup systeme, ladder point distribution systeme (or ladder in general), tournament mode and probably a douzain other stuff, not just dc problem. I really hope that like the design team did earlie this year, hearthstone esport will have some sort of video conversation.
09/19/2017 05:22 PMPosted by rayC
Thank you

We enjoyed watching your win over Dr J at the Montreal Dreamhack tournament. Usually that Razanduin Priest wins with machine gunning the hero power, but seeing you win with board presence was pretty fun to watch.
09/19/2017 05:09 PMPosted by Aratil
Thank you to our players and viewers who participated in and watched the Hearthstone Championship Tour Americas Summer Playoffs on Sept. 16 and 17.

Over the course of the event, playoff venues experienced multiple DDoS attacks and equipment malfunctions that disrupted the tournament. As a result, affected players were unfortunately required to restart games due to disconnections. This also caused extended wait times between games. While we made efforts to address the issues as they were occurring, we want to be clear that the resulting experience this past weekend was not acceptable, and we sincerely apologize to the competitors who were adversely affected. There is still much we can do to improve the overall competitive experience, and to reduce the number of issues that can occur.

We are currently discussing several improvements that we would like to implement as early as the start of the next Hearthstone Championship Tour season. We are also going to reevaluate equipment requirements and venue capabilities to make sure we deliver a better competitive experience for our players, as well as design additional fallbacks in case of disconnects. The Hearthstone Championship Tour has grown over the years into a circuit with high expectations, and we are continually striving to deliver a better experience. We would not have been able to build this program without your participation, both as players and viewers, and your feedback is valuable as we build out our plans for Hearthstone Championship Tour 2018.

Please keep in mind that this is not the end of the conversation—we’re going to do better and we’ll fill you in on our progress as we move forward. Reach out to us on Facebook or Twitter if you have any feedback about #HCT to share. We look forward to hearing from you, now and into the future of competitive Hearthstone.


Thanks for addressing this. Please communicate more often and don't be so vague in your promises. "We'll do better" is great, but we really like details.
09/19/2017 06:08 PMPosted by MightyOwl
Thanks for addressing this. Please communicate more often and don't be so vague in your promises. "We'll do better" is great, but we really like details.

I feel that an initial acknowledgement of the issue is more than enough provided that:
a) it allows you to communicate with the players more quickly and
b) we can expect a follow-up at some point with a solution or partial solution.

As this is a security measure, I can respect details being limited, but I agree that some kind of confirmation of action is important regarding large-scale issues.
From someone who played in the Spring Playoffs, but had numerous friends negatively impacted in Summer this is an encouraging sign.

Suggestion #1 - Eliminate the "Must be lethal in hand or re-game" rule for Disconnects. There should be a feature to save game states that Blizzard Admins have access to. One thing overlooked in Disconnects is mental energy expended on a game. I personally don't care what the solution is but next Playoffs there better be no disconnection issues. Whether it's ingame pause, tournament mode, or something else, just fix it.

Suggestion #2 - Stress tests venues internet better. Require that all venues must provide direct connections (Ethernet cords). If a player chooses to play on his/her mobile device any disconnections from their side will be game losses.

Suggestion #3 - Incentivize venues to provide the best internet and player experience. "The Cave" in Virginia should always be a venue for Americas Playoffs. Why we had to beg for it in Spring and it was not an option for Summer just baffles me. Again, Stress Test venue internet. Players tell Blizzard what venue they will be at before Playoffs so use that information to stress test.

Suggestion #4 - Weight the cash payouts differently. A $4,900 difference between 8th and 9th encourages shady behavior. If you insist on the format as is (I hope not), but if you do I have a suggested payout structure (Same Total amount). Edit: So players look at what their Tiebreakers are and the highest place they can finish. If a player knows losing helps his buddies Tiebreakers for Top 8 and that regardless he can't make it he has no incentive not to help his buddy out. With more prize incentives it discourages this behavior because more players have something to play for.

1st - 4th - $5,000 each.
5th - 8th - $3,500 each.
9th - 12th - $1,000 each
13 - 16th - $500 each
Very happy that you're providing feedback and can't wait to see how things change in the coming year!
From someone who played in the Spring Playoffs, but had numerous friends negatively impacted in Summer this is an encouraging sign.

Suggestion #1 - Eliminate the "Must be lethal in hand or re-game" rule for Disconnects. There should be a feature to save game states that Blizzard Admins have access to. One thing overlooked in Disconnects is mental energy expended on a game. I personally don't care what the solution is but next Playoffs there better be no disconnection issues. Whether it's ingame pause, tournament mode, or something else, just fix it.

Suggestion #2 - Stress tests venues internet better. Require that all venues must provide direct connections (Ethernet cords). If a player chooses to play on his/her mobile device any disconnections from their side will be game losses.

Suggestion #3 - Incentivize venues to provide the best internet and player experience. "The Cave" in Virginia should always be a venue for Americas Playoffs. Why we had to beg for it in Spring and it was not an option for Summer just baffles me. Again, Stress Test venue internet. Players tell Blizzard what venue they will be at before Playoffs so use that information to stress test.

Suggestion #4 - Weight the cash payouts differently. A $4,900 difference between 8th and 9th encourages shady behavior. If you insist on the format as is (I hope not), but if you do I have a suggested payout structure (Same Total amount).

1st - 4th - $5,000 each.
5th - 8th - $3,500 each.
9th - 12th - $1,000 each
13 - 16th - $500 each


1-4 Same Payout?

I can get behind the others, but pay brackets should be:

1st
2nd
3-4
The rest of your brackets are fine.
Just make the same system that you have on Heroes and Starcraft for Hearthstone.

That way disconnects become irrelevant.
09/19/2017 06:25 PMPosted by Nuggetsauce
From someone who played in the Spring Playoffs, but had numerous friends negatively impacted in Summer this is an encouraging sign.

Suggestion #1 - Eliminate the "Must be lethal in hand or re-game" rule for Disconnects. There should be a feature to save game states that Blizzard Admins have access to. One thing overlooked in Disconnects is mental energy expended on a game. I personally don't care what the solution is but next Playoffs there better be no disconnection issues. Whether it's ingame pause, tournament mode, or something else, just fix it.

Suggestion #2 - Stress tests venues internet better. Require that all venues must provide direct connections (Ethernet cords). If a player chooses to play on his/her mobile device any disconnections from their side will be game losses.

Suggestion #3 - Incentivize venues to provide the best internet and player experience. "The Cave" in Virginia should always be a venue for Americas Playoffs. Why we had to beg for it in Spring and it was not an option for Summer just baffles me. Again, Stress Test venue internet. Players tell Blizzard what venue they will be at before Playoffs so use that information to stress test.

Suggestion #4 - Weight the cash payouts differently. A $4,900 difference between 8th and 9th encourages shady behavior. If you insist on the format as is (I hope not), but if you do I have a suggested payout structure (Same Total amount).

1st - 4th - $5,000 each.
5th - 8th - $3,500 each.
9th - 12th - $1,000 each
13 - 16th - $500 each


1-4 Same Payout?

I can get behind the others, but pay brackets should be:

1st
2nd
3-4
The rest of your brackets are fine.


Pretty sure the reason for Immortals structure is that these are the qualifiers, not the main event, so 1-4 being equal in terms of reward sorta makes sense in that context.

For the main event, sure, your structure makes more sense, but when 1-4 are essentially the same thing for the qualifiers, it makes sense that they are equally rewarded. Earn the big bucks at the finals, so to speak.
09/19/2017 05:09 PMPosted by Aratil
We are currently discussing several improvements

seriously? discussing how in the world is this acceptable? the game devs should have been working on a solution a year ago now we are forced to wait an entire year before any of this gets resolved. Not discussing
Maybe DONT HOLD TOURNAMENTS in BARS and RESTAURANTS next time.

They were never going to have stable or capable internet, or competant tech staff.

Please go back to holding tournaments in GAMING VENUES that are rigged up for this sort of stuff.

Seems that this time you prioritised the "Tournament atmosphere" too much. I dont see how anyone can see the benefit of being able to order chicken wings and beer... instead of having good internet.
Just create a pause function. That solves 90% of the problems.
09/19/2017 09:44 PMPosted by XHAD
09/19/2017 05:09 PMPosted by Aratil
We are currently discussing several improvements

seriously? discussing how in the world is this acceptable? the game devs should have been working on a solution a year ago now we are forced to wait an entire year before any of this gets resolved. Not discussing


If you have followed the scene since the beginning you would have noticed all of the improvements they have made in regards to the HCT.

If you have criticism, at least make it constructive.
make a tournament client

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