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YMMV / Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft

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  • Accidental Innuendo: Multiple:
    • In the Puzzle Lab, Dr. Boom's first Lethal puzzle "Of Pirates and Patrons" is introduced by him saying some rather... suggestive lines when taken out of context. It becomes even more hilarious since the puzzle requires you to utilize the memetic Grim Patron, known for his lines of "HEHE, PILE ON!" and "EVERYONE, GET IN HERE!"
    Dr. Boom: "I ask you: Why only collide particles? We can collide so many things."
    Dr. Boom: "Trying to take me down? You've got guts! How do I extract them from you?"
    • The Dungeon Run boss Pathmaker Hamm is introduced with King Togwaggle saying "Hamm be bestest tunnel-digger. "Dig" is euphemism."
  • Adaptation Displacement: You will find more fan work using Hearthstone's version of certain characters than their original Warcraft counterparts. The most prominent examples would be Valeera (the hero of the Rogue class), who people unfamiliar with the original game would be surprised to learn that she is a sidekick to Varian at best and Jaraxxus, the Breakout Character from this game who is just one simple boss fight in the original game.
    • Blizzard themselves acknowledge the displacement by putting Valeera and Jaraxxus in Legion and then putting Valeera into Heroes of the Storm.
  • Alas, Poor Scrappy: Even the most Base Breaking or overpowered classes invokes this reaction from players when the designers nerf them to unplayable and completely screw them over in the next card adventure / expansion. The most prominent ones are Rogue during The Grand Tournament expansion and Priest during the One Night in Karazhan adventure, if the reaction to Purify is anything to go by.
    • While players hated Patches the Pirate for being the first sign that the player was in for a swift death by Pirate aggro, they at least found his "I'm in charge now!" line, his animation of getting shot out of the deck by cannon, and Gang Up allowing six Patches to fly out of his owner's deck at once to be Actually Pretty Funny. Then they removed his Charge ability, which toned down his power level - but what really set most people off was how his iconic quote was replaced by a generic pirate battle cry.
      • Well, he's not in charge anymore.
  • Alternative Character Interpretation:
    • Due to a combination of how the voice acting was directed and whether or not you're losing, the general consensus is that the heroes are a bunch of sarcastic shits in their emotes. Note that this doesn't really apply to Gul'dan, who's a sarcastic shit canonically, Magni, Uther and Anduin to a lesser extent, who are very much sincere, and Ragnaros and Jaraxxus, for reasons you already know.
      • Chief among these is Elise Starseeker. She's probably supposed to be a doting teacher type. You'll be hard-pressed to find someone who doesn't use her as the most brutal Deadpan Snarker in the game. Her "Wow" emote is savage following an opponent's misplay.
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    • It can be really easy (especially to those who hate how Malfurion treat her in the main game and think she is a case of They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character) to interpret Tyrande Whisperwind as a Stepford Smiler who joined the card game to vent her frustration of being demoted from the main leadership role of the Night Elf by her husband. The fact that a few of her flavor text seems to have a passive aggressive tone against Malfurion doesn't help this matter.
  • Americans Hate Tingle: The game has significantly lower presence in Japan than anywhere else, to the point where another virtual card game (with extremely similar mechanics) actually outperforms it in terms of revenue. In response, Blizzard actually had a pretty aggressive Japan-only marketing campaign in the lead-up to Journey to Un'Goro.
  • Author's Saving Throw:
    • After rabid community outcry over the reveal of the blatantly terrible Priest card Purify, Ben Brode published a video explaining Blizzard's reasoning for creating the card, that they screwed up by releasing a weak card at the wrong time, and that the card would be removed from Arena drafts to give Priest some much needed support.
    • The release of more cards with the "class cards stealing" theme in later expansions for Rogue seems to have quieted down the jokes that Priests are better thieves than Rogues.
    • At launch, a mistake in the pack coding for Mean Streets of Gadgetzan caused the tri-class cards to be dropped at triple the rate, causing players to receive a disproportionate amount of duplicates. In response, Blizzard fixed the bug and handed out free Gadgetzan packs equal to a third of the packs a player had opened up to that point.
    • Many Hearthstone forums were up in a shitstorm at the release of Journey to Un'Goro, due to accusations that packs were bugged to give a disproportionate amount of duplicates. This would later turn out to be false, but regardless Blizzard seemed to recognize that this shouldn't happen, and as such starting with Knights of the Frozen Throne, packs no longer give duplicate Legendaries (unless the player owns every Legendary from that set), and guarantee that one is opened within the first 10 packs.
    • With the release of the Kobolds and Catacombs expansions, Hunter players were dismayed to discover that Deathstalker Rexxar, whose hero power generates "Zombeasts" made up of two low-cost beast cards combined into one new minion, could not use any of the beasts from the new expansion. It was then revealed that this was not a bug, and that the Zombeast pool was not planned to EVER expand and would only get smaller with each standard rotation. Game dev Mike Donais explained to Reddit that the issue was not about the coding as many suspected, but rather that the localization teams need to translate every possible Zombeast combination and then fit the translated wording into highly specific requirements for card text arrangement. After a few days of internet outrage over the unannounced limitation, the same dev returned to Reddit to announce that they would be reworking the pool to add new and future beasts.
      • As of Rastakhan's Rumble, this change to Deathstalker Rexxar has nosedived into Nice Job Breaking It, Hero territory; the inclusion of new beasts in his Zombeast pool—and the exponential growth of options that resulted from it—has almost certainly led to Hunter's ongoing dominance in this expansion. See the Game Breaker page for more details.
    • After a patch aimed at solidifying gameplay consistency was flamed for blatantly nerfing Tess Greymane, Lynessa Sunsorrow, and Jungle Giants without offering dust, Blizzard responded with their reasoning for the patch and admitted they made a mistake by not announcing it beforehand. Afterwards, Tess had her change reverted, and players who brought Quest Druid to HCT were allowed to swap their decks before the tournament. note 
    • After about two years of people randomly spawning The Darkness, a minion that starts out Dormant and can only be awakened through a condition tied to its Battlecry and is thus completely useless if summoned in any way except by playing it, the addition of the similar Magtheridon in Ashes of Outland prompted Blizzard to prevent minion-generating effects from rolling Dormant minions that don't awaken naturally (the Imprisoned minions in the same set are still fair game since they can awaken by themselves).
  • Awesome Music:
  • Badass Decay: Madame Lazul's return in Rise of Shadow has her being portrayed as Laughably Evil like the rest of her fellow League of Shadows with a gift for fortune-telling and subservient to Rafaam rather than the Humanoid Abomination she was implied to be during Whisper of the Old Gods. Worse, she doesn't even have an explanation for her sudden drop in power level unlike the rest of the returning villains.
  • Best Boss Ever:
    • The mage class challenge from Blackrock Mountain against the Dark Iron Arena gave players something they had been demanding for a while- a deck made of nothing but Unstable Portal cards, which each add a random minion to your hand and reduce the cost by 3. It's a battle between 30 completely random minions and 30 legendary minions, and the utter madness that tends to ensue has had many call it one of the highlights of the adventure.
    • The epic fight with Nefarian at the end of Blackrock Mountain's fourth wing. It starts out with him basically crushing any hopes of victory by maxing out his mana crystals and gaining a ton of armor, when suddenly Ragnaros shows up to save the day and grants you insanely powerful cards to even the odds. Adding to this, Nefarian's hero power lets him draw spells based on your hero's class, meaning that the fight will practically never be the same every time.
    • The Collapsing Temple, the third boss of The League of Explorer's first wing, is widely beloved for being the most creative boss in the game. Instead of winning by doing the simple thing and attacking the enemy hero until they die, the Temple requires you to survive for 10 turns while it's throwing different obstacles at you, starting with a Zombie Chow and ending with multiple gigantic minions. Special events occur every turn, from giving the player a choice between a mana crystal or drawing a card, to the ceiling falling down and destroying all minions, and it definitely adds to the adventure's flavor of exploring ancient dungeons. Finally, the encounter is almost strictly strategy- the only RNG elements are from a single event and your own draw.
    • Lady Nazjar from League of Explorers is well liked for her totally awesome boss mechanicnote , to the point where Whispers of the Old Gods added in two Shaman cards that do exactly that.note 
    • Both battles with Arch-Thief Rafaam. In the first, he steals the player's deck and uses it. You can give him a horrible deck that doesn't work... or you could let him use your top-tier decks against you. More awesome if you win against said deck. In the second battle, he uses his own deck in conjunction with the Staff of Origination to render himself immune to damage and summon previous bosses, each with powerful effects. To combat this, the League gives you powerful artifacts (and several Boom Bots) to even the odds.
    • The prime candidate for the most loved Tavern Brawl is Unite Against Mechazod, a co-op brawl where two players combine forces to take down Gearmaster Mechazod, an insanely powerful minion threatening to destroy both heroes. Every basic rule in the game is thrown out the window and requires the players to support each other with heals, give each other gifts using otherwise underused cards like Lorewalker Cho, and work together to buff up minions to borderline impossible levels to even scratch the boss. Mechazod himself doesn't go down easy, and requires significant strategy from both players to preserve their boards and keep their health totals high. He was loved so much that he was brought back for another round, with different pre-made decks from different classes.
    • In a similar vein as Mechazod, there's a co-op Brawl against Nefarian, which can be argued to be much better. Among the reasons are, despite his incredible 200 health, Nefarian doesn't snowball as easily as Mechazod, and the players who are given Priest and Shaman are given non-Standard cards that directly helps against Nefarian instead of a host of mere normal cards.
    • The Chess Event from One Night in Karazhan manages to recreate chess in Hearthstone in an imaginative and inventive way, and is widely considered to be the best boss in an otherwise disappointing adventure.
    • The absolutely hysterical prologue battle in Icecrown Citadel. It starts out as a Hopeless Boss Fight against the Lich King where the player can't use any cards and dies quickly, only to get up for round 2 against Tirion Fordring, whose first few minions are styled after incompetent raid members in World of Warcraft and are thus completely useless, including a Warlock who dies immediately.
    • Rafaampage! has you flattening the League of Explorers, Alliance and Horde (in that order) by controlling the most overpowered minion, Galakrond himself. Provided you can summon him on time before Reno kills you...
  • Breather Boss:
    • After the brutal co-op boss fights with Gearmaster Mechazod, the Tavern Brawl against the City of Stormwind is instead a refreshingly simple survival minigame that lets you deliberately lose in order to gain quest progress and a free pack. It's not even that difficult when going for a high score, as there are a myriad of ways to cheese the AI.
    • Gnosh the Greatworm is one of the more forgiving Dungeon Run bosses, as his gimmick (destroy the minion with the highest attack at the start of his turn) is fairly easy to play around and relies more on strategy than RNG. As he's one of the last possible bosses, he's very likely to be sandwiched between two far more challenging bosses.
    • Blood-Queen Lana'thel is considered one of the easier bosses in Knights of the Frozen Throne. At the start of the game, she replaces the player's hero power with one that buffs a minion's attack and health, which can only be used once on each minion and must be used every turn. The idea is that the player will eventually run out of minions to buff and have to buff Lana'thel's minions instead, but in practice, this makes it incredibly easy for any half-decent zoo deck to simply overrun her with the free buffs she gave you.
    • Professor Putricide's gimmick is that he cycles through three different hero powers as you bring him down. However, each one is actually less threatening than the last, and all have obvious weaknesses. His initial Secret-based phase runs out of steam fairly quickly and gets gutted by Eater of Secrets, he only has three weapons in his deck to take advantage of his second hero power and can be neutralized by any kind of Ooze, and his third hero power is more harmful to him than you since most of his cards cost less than 5 mana. To top it off, the biggest threat in his deck is The Boogeymonster, making it easy to outlast him if you came prepared for his first phase.
    • Compared to the other Plague Lords from Saviors of Uldum, Icarax is kind of a joke, especially compared to the preceding fight against Xatma. He plays a tempo warrior deck... but the thing is, by the time any reasonable deck has reached his encounter, you can massively out-tempo him. A lot of his deck relies on him keeping minions on the board - in fact, his entire first hero power is just a reusable Commanding Shout without the card draw - something you can just undo. His second hero power synergizes with damaged minions but for some reason has negative synergy with multiple damaged minions, and guess how his deck damages minions? His last hero power is actually literally just one of the Priest powers from the Dalaran Heist. Chapter 4 is usually considered the least replayable for a reason.
  • Big-Lipped Alligator Moment: The "Hogchoppers" minions from Mean Streets of Gadgetzan (Tanaris Hogchopper, Spiked Hogrider, Leatherclad Hogleader). Quillboars in Warcraft tend to be primitive and not exactly talkative. These quillboars look and act like leather-clad biker gangs. The fact that they look highly anthropomorphized does nothing to help them look any less out of place. Might be somewhat lampshaded as their flavor text mentions how totally existent and not fake the Hogchoppers are.
  • Broken Base:
    • Balance changes, and how Blizzard does them, are heavily contentious. The only thing people agree on was that the Warsong Commander nerf was horribly executed, even if the card itself deserved it. The most obvious war is between those who think that too many nerfs are heavy-handed and should be more lenient for the sake of having more competitive cards available, while others think it's for the best and that if the nerf doesn't work out, then it was pointless to do in the first place. There's also the attitude towards buffing cards. Those in favor explain that it would make the game cheaper due to having more good cards available, while those against stand by Ben Brode's statement that a bad card can eventually be good with the right synergy - which, in essence, is a type of buffing. Most agree, however, that the Basic Set should receive an update.
    • For every player who praises the game's Rougelike modes (Dungeon Run, Monster Hunt), there's another who slams it as a horribly-designed Luck-Based Mission.
    • Is the game newbie friendly enough?
      • On one hand, many of the "Basic" decks are in fact good decks that don't rely on game-changing legendaries or gimmicks, letting a player pick them up. The game also explains what the jargon means and even has a visual indicator on whether or not a card will have its secondary effect toggle, letting newcomers pick up the mechanics easily.
      • But on the other hand, "Basic" decks can have difficulty winning against high-tier decks. With cards from multiple sets being available at once (and RNG never being favourable when drawing them from packs), it can be a daunting task for a completely new player to catch up to the curve with everyone else. Even though you can forge the cards from duplicates and cards you don't need, this takes quite awhile to accomplish.
  • Casual/Competitive Conflict:
    • The game's focus on RNG is the main cause of divide between the two. Hardcore players hate RNG for reducing the influence of player skill, while the casual crowd prefers its ability to create hilarious circumstances. Strangely for this trope, many members from both sides have come out to support the other; some high-ranking competitive players have defended RNG for adding another element of skill to the game, i.e. thinking on the fly and coming up with new plans, while a handful of casual players have lambasted RNG for being annoying. Then there's the rare third camp, who believe RNG has a place in the game as long as it's not obnoxious (which was ultimately the reason Tuskarr Totemic was nerfed- statistically, it was balanced, but it was incredibly grating when it got good rolls).
    • That said, the entire mess surrounding Yogg-Saron was this trope played completely straight. He was the single most despised card in competitive history, beating out even Starving Buzzard and Undertaker, for transforming any kind of match into a complete clusterfuck that rendered all actions before and after his summoning pointless. At the same time, he was adored by the casual fanbase for about the same reason, to the point where one of the most popular Hearthstone videos on Youtube is simply Yogg casting over 100 spells. Ultimately, the competitive players won out; Yogg received a very hefty nerf to curb his power, to much celebration from the hardcore crowd and seething rage from his fans.
  • Complacent Gaming Syndrome: The game has become somewhat infamous for this, in that new techniques and strategies are discovered all the time, and very quickly get copied by everyone else. It becomes a constant struggle to try and stay ahead of the curve.
    • On a more casual level, Mech Decks have becomes quite commonplace. This is because the neutral Mech minions all synergize extremely well, so much in fact you can make a Mech Deck out of virtually any class with the bulk of minions staying the same.
  • Crazy Is Cool:
    • Yogg-Saron is the proud owner of the absolute wackiest effect in the gamenote , and the fans adore him for it. Plus, despite how RNG dependent he is, Yogg-Saron actually has this weird style of consistency to him, in that you can always expect him to clear the board and draw a bunch of cards, so he's hilarious and playable!
    • Sergeant Sally. Gadgetzan doesn't even have a police force; she just showed up one day dressed in policewear and started dispensing justice through increasingly illegal ways, like stealing gear from evidence lockers or causing even more property damage than the actual criminals.
  • Creator Worship: Ben Brode, the original director of the game, is famed for his friendliness, transparency, and game design insight, and despite making mistakes the fandom adores him unconditionally, even after he chose to leave Blizzard for other ventures.
  • Critical Dissonance: One Night in Karazhan is widely disliked for its overtly easy Heroic mode, poorly utilized setting, and its strong but mostly boring set of cards. According to Blizzard statistics, however, it's apparently the best-selling adventure to date, and the Youtube trailer noticeably has roughly double the amount of views of the other videos. This is likely due to the remnants of Karazhan's popularity from old-school World of Warcraft, causing nostalgic players to jump ship to Hearthstone just to see the characters again.
  • Designated Hero: The subtitle is Heroes of Warcraft. That said, two of the "heroes" are Gul'dan (an evil warlock from Warcraft II) and Garrosh Hellscream (the Big Bad of Mists of Pandaria). The game's definition of "heroes" became even more twisted as time went on, with characters like Madame Lazul, Mecha-Jaraxxus, N'Zoth becoming playable.
    • It's possible that "heroes" is used in the sense of "controllable powerful faction leader" as it is in Warcraft (and for that matter the Defense of the Ancients mod). Even then, there are exceptions, as someone like Valeera does not lead, yet still duke it out with many faction leaders, as well as Rexxar and Medivh, both of whom are Champions of their factions rather than leaders.
    • These two can also be considered Horde heroes, just from different subfactions instead of the players'. Garrosh served proudly at Northrend and, as warchief, had his own vision for the Horde. Gul'dan invented the Horde and created valuable soldiers for Doomhammer's war effort (namely the death knight, the ogre-mage, and in older sources the weaponized giant sea turtle). So they were at least heroic in deed.
    • It could also refer to the classical definition of hero, which was basically just a synonym for badass.
  • Designated Villain:
    • Nefarian and his forces in the third wing of Blackrock Mountain, because without context of the original raid's story it just seems like you're crashing into your friend's home, killing them and stealing their shit, but a special mention goes to General Drakkisath who begs you why you're doing this in a really sad and betrayed voice. It isn't until you encounter Vaelastrasz where it's obvious that Nefarian is genuinely a bad person.
    • Infinite Toki is a boss fight in Monster Hunt because she wants to... Set Right What Once Went Wrong and prevents Toki from enacting the Bad Future she came from? Add that to the fact that Toki's likability is sketchy at best, and one can easily ends up Rooting for the Empire.
  • Discredited Meme: Jokes about Purify stopped being relevant in the Un'Goro meta, where the card ended up being a core piece of the surprisingly decent Silence Priest deck.
  • Dork Age
    • The period between Blackrock Mountain and Whispers of the Old Gods was a full year of fan complaints and Blizzard trying to figure out what they can do to keep things fresh. Blackrock Mountain's card selection did a poor job of promoting the highly-tauted dragon synergy, while simultaneously introducing the unstoppable Patron Warrior deck into the game, dominating tournaments left and right. The next set, The Grand Tournament, was a disaster, featuring a lackluster card selection that ended up rendering the meta stagnant, all except for the additions of Dragon Priest, which was warmly welcomed, and Secret Paladin, which was not. League Of Explorers is widely considered the best set ever printed, but unfortunately the metagame settled far too fast, and despite its card variety Renolock ended up the only new deck to emerge from it, leaving behind a pretty stale game. It took Whispers' massive selection of solid cards, nerfs of overpowered Classic set cards, and the addition of formats to finally shake things up.
    • Unfortunately, that didn't last long as the Year Of The Kraken quickly devolved into Shamanstone. Shaman was already in a good spot during Whispers, sharing the top tier with Gul'dan and Garrosh, but the cards Karazhan added pushed it over the edge into being full-on dominant with Midrange Shaman being the best deck in the game. It was a deck whose worst matchup was itself, leading to further saturation of the ladder since Midrange Shaman was your best shot at beating Midrange Shaman. Gadgetzan proceeded to dethrone Midrange Shaman from its dominance... but only because the addition of Jade cards and Pirate cards made Aggro Shaman even better. It could pretty much do all of the things Midrange Shaman wanted to do, except it could do them much faster. It reached a point where depending on the time of month and which rank you're at, 60% of the opponents you face will be Shamans.
    • Things only got worse in Mean Streets of Gadgetzan. The rise of Jade Druid essentially made any other late-game value strategy obsolete, since it was pointless to try and out value infinite, ever-growing Jade Idols. This forced decks to be faster than Jade or simply be outclassed. On the opposite end of the spectrum, the set also paved the way for Pirate Warrior, the single fastest and most aggressive aggro deck to have ever existed. The thing bullied Midrange and Value decks out of existence. It was so oppressive, Reno Jackson stopped being run in many decks because turn six was too late-game in that matchup. Since Jade Druid was still busy suppressing Control decks, more than half of the classes weren't viable. To top it all off, Shamanstone was still in effect, now incorporating powerful Jade cards. Many people consider this to be Hearthstone's darkest time for Ranked play.
    • Finally averted for the entire Year of the Mammoth. All three sets brought in reasonably balanced cards that slowed the meta down extremely - it was expected that even aggro/zoo decks would reach 10 mana. Even though Priest was certainly the dominant class and Shaman and Hunter were left a bit on the wayside, it's still arguably the most balanced year Hearthstone has had yet.
    • The Year of the Raven once again resulted in much complaining, between Druids having way too much going for them, Shudderwock Shaman curbstomping most control decks, and Baku the Mooneater pushing aggro to the forefront (looking at you, Rogue and Paladin). The Boomsday Project in particular ended up turning the Wild format into Combo Druid central while failing to shake up the Standard metagame, resulting in a stagnant metagame and a lot of players losing interest. The dominant decks being nerfed didn't help matters, as the power vacuum was promptly filled by Hunters. That being said, much of this was due to the Mammoth sets vastly eclipsing the Raven sets in power level (especially Kobolds and Catacombs, which puts most of its contemporaries to shame); many players believe that things will eventually get better after the next rotation.
  • Enjoy the Story, Skip the Game: Most players agree that the Galakrond's Awakening Adventure dialogue, character interactions and seeing the culmination of the storyline since the start of the year is incredibly well-done. Whether or not this make up for the underwhelming gameplay, low difficulty on the Story Mode and the underwhelming card pool is another debate.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse:
    • Lord Jaraxxus. Originally a raid boss from World of Warcraft, Jaraxxus appears in Hearthstone as the Warlock's unique legendary card, and he quickly became probably the most popular character in the game thanks to a combination of his glorious voice acting, his hilarious emotes and quotes, and for being a total standout amongst the cards of the game: if Jaraxxus is successfully summoned, he outright replaces Gul'dan as the hero with an 3/8 weapon and a game changing hero power, meaning that Jaraxxus isn't just awesome, he's a card to be feared as well. Upon summoning, he drops his famous quote, "YOU FACE JARAXXUS, EREDAR LORD OF THE BURNING LEGION! " Finally, it seems to have become recognized, as in one set of patch notes Blizzard specifically references him.
      Battle.Net Patch Notes: Winning a game as Lord Jaraxxus will now properly grant credit towards unlocking the Warlock golden hero. You win... BUT YOUR WORLD IS STILL DOOMED!
    • Doomsayer is a Classic, Epic minion with the effect of blowing up the board on his next turn. Suffice to say, whenever he ends up on the board, someone is going to have a very bad time. As such, he's an essential part of any Epic Fail videos of Hearthstone.
    • Magma Rager is a 5/1 for 3 mana and So Bad, It's Good in card form, with countless jokes being made both for and against it. While most blatantly terrible cards get this type of treatment, Magma Rager is far and away the most common one to mock. Eventually, The Grand Tournament kickstarted a Running Gag where a new Rager would be added every other set - so far, we've got Ice Rager, Am'gam Rager, Shadow Rager, Wax Rager, Faceless Rager, Divine Rager, Rock Rager, and Steel Rager.
    • Sen'jin Shieldmasta gets quite a bit of love from the fanbase for being a reliable, no-strings-attached Taunt with solid stats, making him easy to fit into most decks. It helps that he has awesome emotes and is given to you for free.
    • Annoy-o-tron, a 1/2 Mech with Taunt and Divine Shield for 2 mana, is one of the most popular cards in the fandom for its hilarious yet adorable emotes and surprising effectiveness in Mech decks.
    • Antique Healbot, an excellent 5 mana 3/3 that restores 8 health to his hero. Generally agreed upon to be one of the first good healing cards, and was definitely a lifesaver during times where Aggro decks were rampant. It was liked enough that a corrupted variant would appears in Whispers of the Old Gods.
    • Grim Patron, a 3/3 for 5 mana that summons another Grim Patron whenever it survives damage, gets plenty of love singlehandedly creating a fun, viable, and most importantly cheap warrior deck. Having ridiculous voice acting is a plus, to the point where "EVERYONE, GET IN HERE!" gets used outside the fandom quite a bit. His popularity took a hit when the absurdly broken Patron Warrior dominated the game, but came back into the spotlight after the deck was nerfed, yet remained good.
    • Dreadsteed, a 4 mana 1/1 Warlock minion from The Grand Tournament that more or less can't die. It's effect allows for some creative combos due to certain Deathrattle synergy cards such as Baron Rivendare and Spiritsinger Umbra, and it's flavor text is famous for honoring a Hearthstone player who suffered from cancer. When it was nerfed with the launch of Knights of the Frozen Throne (it's previous effect was too good when used with Defile), there was much mourning.
    • Evil Heckler from The Grand Tournament is quite popular, attributing to the fact that it is the 5 mana Booty Bay Bodyguard, a 5/4 minion with taunt, for 4 mana and he has the funniest intro quotes in the game.
      Evil Heckler: You smell like a Leper Gnome!
    • Justicar Truehart, a 6 mana 6/3 Neutral Legendary released for TGT with the Battlecry of updating the player's Hero Power is beloved for bringing more active ways of interacting with the player's Hero Power and being one of the better conceptualized cards from the set.
    • Lyra the Sunshard, a 5 mana 3/5 Priest Legendary from Journey to Un'Goro who adds a random Priest spell to her owner's hand whenever they cast a spell. While her sheer power as a card generating machine is one factor for her popularity, the main reason why she caught people's attention was that in the upcoming week for Un'Goro's release, after she was dubbed by the game designers as "maybe too good", they were mocked relentlessly for saying a clearly terrible card was strong. Cue the release of the set, where she destroyed all expectations.
    • Ultrasaur, a 10 mana 7/14 from Journey to Un'Goro. It's a completely vanilla minion, and would otherwise join the club of unremarkable pack filler minions were it not for its gloriously derpy looking artwork. It ended up being the subject of multiple joke videos and decks specifically based around it.
    • Snowflipper Penguin is a vanilla 0 mana 1/1 minion from Knights of the Frozen Throne which stands out among other pack filler cards by being so incredibly adorable that no one seems capable of outright disliking it. Also, it's a snowboarding penguin. To give you an idea, on Hearthpwn (one of the biggest Hearthstone databases and forums out there), 84% of people who voted on the card's viability deemed it "Meta-defining" despite the card itself being entirely unremarkable from a gameplay perspective.
    • Ticking Abomination from Frozen Throne. It was the only card revealed on the day Frozen Throne's spoiler season was supposed to start, causing many anxious players to start joking about how it's actually the only card in the set, and eventually evolved into something greater, with many claiming that it's the most powerful minion in the game. Even Blizzard eventually got in on the fun, printing out a giant, physical copy of the card.
    • Shadowreaper Anduin from Frozen Throne has as much fanart as the poster Death Knight of the expansion Frost Lich Jaina due to having the fan-favorite Shadow Priest theme and is such a major departure from the original hero.
    • A.F. Kay, one of the joke cards Tirion summons during the first encounter of Frozen Throne, is well liked due to being a living parody of one of the most hated types of players. The devs seemed to like her too, as she's back in Dungeon Run as a boss who does nothing at all.
    • Whizbang the Wonderful from The Boomsday Project was extremely well received right off the bat for his gimmick of giving you a random deck at the start of the game, even though general consensus is that he probably won't be very good. He's considered a godsend for new players by letting them play with constructed decks without having to craft all the cards, and just plain fun to mess around with for veteran players.
    • Many players bemoan how underwhelming Harbinger Celestia is when she was revealed because her card art is generally considered to be one of the best of The Boomsday Project, if not the best of the game.
    • Zilliax is one of the better received cards from The Boomsday Project, due to his cool artwork, voice work, and being a solid anti-aggro card even without any other Mechs to Magnetize him to, meaning that many control decks are fine with running Zilliax on his own.
    • Vessina is one of the more popular of the League of E.V.I.L. playable heroes, due to an already fairly-sized group of players wanting to see playable Sethrak in WoW proper. She stands as a bit of a beacon of hope for them, due to being a gender-dimorphic female Sethrak, which only Sethraliss, their Loa-god is the other example of.
    • For more or less the exact same reason as Vessina, Captain Eudora is popular too amongst the crowds hoping for playable Vulpera to make their way into World Of Warcraft as well.
    • If Vessina started as the most popular, Squeamlish blew her out of the water. She's an adorable kobold Genki Girl with an F in evil who tries to help and make friends with all the Dalaran Defenders. Between the concept of her turning into all these funny animals and her You No Take Candle speech, it's not hard to see why she's so popular.
      Ol' Toomba: Ya interested in one of dese treasure maps?
      Squeamlish: Me go find treasure! We share!
    • Zephrys the Great is slowly becoming this, primarily due to effor of the devs in making him a smart card who will analyze battlefield conditions and offer you 3 best possible solutions for your situation. He might even see Lethals you might have missed, so pay closer attention when he starts offering direct burn spells.
    • Bob, the bartender in The Dalaran Heist, Tombs of Terror and Battlegrounds along with being the Game-Over Man in the "Road to Northrend" Tavern Brawl. With all the help he provides, he's pretty much the friend you never knew you needed. Some players want him to be an additional helper in the tavern itself or even replace Harth Stonebrew as the tavern's main innkeeper.
    • Battleground:
      • Former fan favorite A. F. Kay return with a Hero Power perfectly capture her playstyle (skip your first two turns then Discover two high Tavern Tier minions), which not only made her an incredibly powerful hero but also an absolute fan favorite and an entertaining hero to watch.
      • Dancin' Daryl quickly rose to most people's list of favorite hero almost instantly thanks to his unique Difficult, but Awesome playstyle that allows for incredibly insane board swing if the player have the skill to pull it off.
      • Lich Baz'hial's high risk high reward playstyle (paying Health for a Gold Coin) earns her a substantial fanbase in the Warlock Hearthstone players.
      • Tirion Fording's release was met with many fans' enthusiasm for being the first hero to specify synergize with no types minions - something the fanbase have asked for since the start of Battleground.
  • Evil Is Cool:
    • Completely averted with Kel'Thuzad, and we wouldn't have it any other way.
    • Nefarian is a raging whackjob, but his surprisingly developed personality, sheer comedy factor, and memorable boss fights have made him pretty popular.
    • Arch-Thief Rafaam has an utterly bombastic voice, awesome dialogue, a cleverly executed plan, and at one point outright steals the player's deck to use for himself. Fans were thrilled when he came back as the Big Bad of the Year of the Dragon, to the point where he's widely considered the best part of the story.
    • The Olds Gods are the most ancient, evil enemies in Warcraft canon, and even in Hearthstone their evil spreads by corrupting the various minions of the game. They're also big, badass 10 mana minions capable of ending games by themselves, and their expansion was also one of the better received ones.
    • The Death Knight heroes and the Lich King are naturally the spotlight of Knights of the Frozen Throne, to the point where the other Legendaries get glossed over most of the time. It helps that they're all considered powerful cards in their own right, with the Death Knights dominating the late game and the Lich King stopping aggro decks in their tracks by himself.
    • Galakrond shows why he is deemed the "Progenitor of Dragons" by crushing the League of Explorers, Alliance, and Horde (in that order) in The League of E.V.I.L.'s ending in Galakrond's Awakening.
  • Evil Is Sexy: Many players will admit that Aya Blackpaw is quite attractive for a Pandaren. She also happens to be the first example of a straight-up evil Pandaren in any sort of Warcraft media.
  • Fandom Rivalry: With ShadowVerse, primarily due to the two games being quite similar. When the two fanbases meet, it is almost never on peaceful terms.
  • Fan Cards Fuel: This is a given because of its premise and tied to both Warcraft and World of Warcraft. Most common characters that fans requested and created themselves as minions or even new class / heroes are: Illidan Stormrage (his ability in this game is universally considered underwhelming, which does get Hilarious in Hindsight with Legion's release because Demon Hunters are now a class, thus Illidan can easily ascend into a hero to represent the class), Tyrande Whisperwind (as her husband Malfurion is the Druid class hero), The Lich King Arthas Menethil, Blood Elf Kings Lor'Themar and Kael'thas Sunstrider (blood elf fans are displeased and jealous that Valeera received the Ascended Extra treatment while the other two important lore characters didn't). Surprisingly, there is a new Blood Elf hero for Whispers of the Old Gods, but it's not the aforementioned two... it's Lady Liadrin (who has been rather inactive since the end of Burning Crusade), to be the alternate Paladin.
  • Foe Yay: Varian's conflict against Garrosh was legendary. And yet Varian here is a Warrior-exclusive card, and the default Warrior here is... Garrosh. So only Garrosh gets to summon Varian unless one buys Magni. Ironic?
  • Fountain of Memes: Lord Jaraxxus, to point where any quotes from him tend to be bolded and capitalized by default. On any website, not just this one.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: The Kobolds' catchphrase of You No Take Candle is such a memetic line, and it's practically a running gag that Kobold-related card has some reference to candles. But come Kobolds and Catacombs, we find out exactly why they're insistent you don't take any candle. Hell, when the related card is in play, you will hope you don't take any candles.note 
    • This is actual canon from the parent game proper: The Kobolds use candles because they're a race of tunnelers. Azeroth is a planet infested in the crust and mantle by the Old Gods and digging into the crust thus brings with it the risk of having Dug Too Deep and allowing void energy from the imprisoned Old Gods to seep from the cracks and coalesce in the dark tunnels as manifestations of the Void. Since Light and Void are anathemas to each other, bringing candlelight into the tunnel prevents these void energies from coalescing. Once they have coalesced into something like the Darkness, however, you're going to need a lot more than mere candlelight to defeat it - which is also represented in the dungeon-run Darkness boss; the candles will buy you time, but you're going to need some seriously heavy hitters to bring it down.
  • Game-Breaker: Has its own page
  • Gateway Series: For the Collectible Card Game genre, both physical and digital. It's also a meta Deconstruction of what happens when you make an easy to learn, free-to-play game with the brand power to promote it - you have a fanbase of people who have never played a card game before, but act like they know what's best for it, oblivious that a handful of Hearthstone's flaws are hard-coded into the genre itself. Whenever a new digital CCG comes along. it's declared the "Hearthstone Killer", only for the game to quickly die out because the same flaws are still present, with only ShadowVerse managing to dodge the bullet.
  • Genius Bonus: Understanding the meaning behind the name of the hunter card King's Elekk falls under this. It's a subtle chess reference; bishops are sometimes likened to or called elephants (mostly in different languages and in similar games like Xiangqi), and an elekk is basically an elephant. The king's bishop is the bishop who starts the game next to the king, which is fitting for a 2-mana card that players will generally want in their opening hand.
  • Goddamned Bats:
    • Taunt minions with Divine Shield. Rarely dangerous by their own (though some can be a threat on their own, e.g. Tirion Fordring), but the fact they require at least 2 hits to take down regardless of stats can be infuriating and most dangerously, give time for your enemy's big hitters to get ready to attack. Most iconic is, appropriately, the Annoy-o-Tron. A 1/2 stat is not a threat, but considering it has been known to tank Deathwing...
    • And then there's Giggling Inventor, which summoned two of the aforementioned Annoy-o-Trons for just five mana. Not only did this put a wall in front of opponents that was almost impossible to penetrate in a single turn, but the presence of three difficult-to-remove bodies on the board opened the door for big token buffs such as Savage Roar and Crystal Core. Thankfully, though, the cost was eventually bumped to 7 mana.
  • Goddamned Boss: The Steel Sentinel, the second boss of League of Explorers' final wing, has a very frustrating passive hero power that causes it to reduce all damage it takes to 1. Pyroblast? 1 damage. Deathwing? 1 damage. Not even the infamous Divine Spirit+Inner Fire combo can be used to cheese it, meaning that players are stuck grinding it out. Adding to this, the Sentinel's deck contains tons of cards that either heal it or give it armor, making the fight take even longer, and the heroic version causes its minions to only take 1 damage too. The only saving grace is that it's more excruciatingly long than it is hard, plus a Mage deck featuring Flamewaker, Rhonin, and Malygos usually does the trick in a quick amount of time.
  • Good Bad Bugs:
    • Floating minions. Endlessly amusing, and unlike most bugs in the game, fairly harmless.
    • In the past, when legendary quests pop up, if you had 2/3 of the quests slots filled, you would still be able to obtain the 3rd daily quest on top of the legendary quest as both would still pop up on the interface. As long as you don't quit, you can still clear all four of them in a single sitting or at least clear a quest to fit the rest of them properly. Sadly, it was patched on September 2019, in where if you don't have at least 2 quest slots open, the legendary quest will override the daily quest instead, costing players much-needed gold.
  • Harsher in Hindsight:
    • Tirion's Deathrattle is pretty awesome in game as a Take Up My Sword gesture. It also ended up foreshadowing exactly what happens to Tirion in the Legion expansion of World of Warcraft, where he dies after prolonged torture by the Burning Legion, his last action being to pass the Ashbringer on to the player character.
    • In similar vein, Ysera's ability to randomly produce Nightmare, one of the Dream cards, that can buff her (and any other minions) by +5/5 but kill it the next turn is pretty ironic considering that in the Legion expansion she was corrupted by the same Nightmare and has to be killed off by Tyrande and the player character. Doubly so now that Tyrande has been introduced into the game.
    • One of the more memorable interaction is when Vol'jin smugly asks Garrosh "Who be da Warchief now?" whenever played by the Priest player against Garrosh. Vol'jin was immediately killed off during the very next expansion Legion after did basically nothing as Warchief and the title was handed to Sylvanas.
    • Pirate's Day in 2017 came just a few days after the nerf to Fiery War Axe, a change that greatly diminished the strength of the then-powerful Pirate Warrior.
  • Heartwarming in Hindsight: The legendary minion Brann Bronzebeard's quote when summoning against his brother Magni is asking if he had seen their brother Muradin lately, suggesting that this Brann didn't know that his brother is revealed to still be alive and well in the main game.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: In World of Warcraft, Gul'Dan finally starts summoning the Burning Legion back to Azeroth. Who is the first major demon he summons? Jaraxxus. It is worth noting that Jaraxxus doesn't kill him this time, but still.
    • A while back, dataminers found out that Karazhan restoration had evidently been renamed "Medivh's Big birthday bash". One Night In Karazhan later.
    • The Ticking Abomination'snote  "I don't feel so good..." quote upon being played has become hilarious in the eyes of the fandom after Avengers: Infinity War's infamous "I don't feel so good" scene. Some fans have even compared it to Thanos for its tendency to destroy half the board with its effect.
  • Ho Yay/Les Yay:
    • The Paladin card Dragon Consort is a 5 mana 5/5 Dragon that allows the player to reduce the cost of the next Dragon played by 2. The card refers to a specific title of a dragon that was picked by the Aspects in WoW to be their "companions, partners, and lovers" and the art depicts a single bronze dragon of ambiguous gender whose effect can "assist" any dragons on the same side, which include some Legendary ones whose gender is explicitly stated like Deathwing, Ysera, Alexstrasza, Nefarian etc.
    • Hamuul Runetotem's mirror entrance quote has a little bit of this and Screw Yourself.
  • It's Easy, So It Sucks!:
    • Early on, veteran TCG players are quick to slam Hearthstone for being overly simple, due to the lack of playing out of turn, due to a small card pool, etc etc. These days, this particular cry is mostly silent due to other issues...
    • One Night In Karazhan has received a lot of flak due to being pretty easy regardless of which difficulty you choose. Other than Heroic Chess and Heroic Free Medivh, it's pretty easy to beat a boss with whatever ladder decks you have on-hand and the boss AI is significantly easier to exploit. Silverware Golem refuses to attack a Taunt minion with a board-clear deathrattle, Illhoof will constantly attack any Icky Imps you manage to steal from him, The Big Bad Wolf can be defeated on Turn 2 if you get the right opening hand, etc.
  • Junk Rare:
    • Several Epic cards are of limited use beyond 100 crafting dust (the value of a more useful Rare card). Kidnapper is arguably the worst of the bunch, but as a class, Warlock got shafted since all three of his Epics are underwhelming for their cost.
    • Amusingly, the epic spell Bane of Doomnote  was so inconsistent (and its effect was more limited than its card text would suggest, to boot) that the devs decided to buff it so that any demon could be summoned by its effect, making it arguably no longer an example of this trope.
    • Bribing Your Way to Victory: Some epics have the exact opposite problem, where they’re almost necessary to play some of the classes. Even though most of Rogue epics fall under Junk Rare, Preparation is a must have card in almost every deck and without it you will be at a major disadvantage. Druids get hit with this the worst: Malfurion's first 3 epics Ancient of Lore, Ancient of War and especially Force of Nature are used in almost every meta deck before their nerf and are very hard to substitute. Luckily you can craft them but that takes 400 dust to craft one epic card so have fun waiting.
    • Special mention must go to Majordomo Executus, considered to be the worst Legendary in the game. Its ability is that when killed, your hero is replaced by Ragnaros, the Firelord. The problem is Executus has too much health to reliably summon Ragnaros, and Ragnaros himself has too little health to the point where summoning the Majordomo by accident can kill you.
      • Executus has been supplanted from his position by The Boogeymonster, whose effect makes him a strictly worse Gruul note . Not only does he not have the potential for awesome games like Executus has, but since he came in Whispers Of The Old Gods, you can unpack him instead of any of the actual good legendaries. Of all the Legendaries to be called 400 Dust, The Boogeymonster is the most dustable of them all.
  • Memetic Loser:
    • Magma Rager, a 5/1 for 3 mana, tends to jump between this and Memetic Badass. Its 1 health means it will die to everything, yet its high attack for its cost has caused people to joke that it's the best card in the game because it can kill Sylvanas Windrunner for a 3 mana profit. Made funnier by the Ragnaros Vs. Nefarian Tavern Brawl, where not only could Ragnaros summon them with his default hero power, they were surprisingly dangerous! Then The Grand Tournament gives us Ice Rager, which is exactly like Magma Rager except he's 5/2! After that Whispers of the Old Gods has Am'gam Rager, which is Magma Rager in reverse. And then Mean Streets of Gadgetzan gave us Shadow Rager, AKA Magma Rager with Stealth. Finally taken to it's apex with dungeon run, with the Wax Rager minion that is one of several game-breaking cards in the deck.
    • Troggzor the Earthinator will forever be remembered as "that one card everybody was excited about and shouldn't have been". Prior to the release of Goblins vs. Gnomes, everybody was crapping themselves over how good this card would be, as he was a counter to spells in a spell-heavy metagame. Thing is, he was released at the same time as Dr. Boom, and his effect didn't matter because he could easily be cleared with minions. Nowadays, Troggzor's name is basically a punchline for whenever a card is hyped up prerelease and falls flat on its face, such as Princess Huhuran or Menagerie Warden.
    • The three gangs from Mean Streets of Gadgetzan will forever be remembered as the Kabal, the Jade Lotus, and the Pirates. And the Grimy Goons. While in the initial hype the Kabal and Jade Lotus factions were more interesting than the Goons' handbuffing mechanics, most people still expected them to be worthy additions to minion-heavy decks, to the point that some expected Don Hon'Cho himself to become a staple card. People were well aware that the handbuffing was a slow mechanic, but Mean Streets had been the first expansion in a long while to appear to be combating aggressive playstyles, with almost no aggressive cards printed. Almost. What almost no one expected was that the meta was about to become the fastest and most aggressive it had ever been in the history of the game's lifespan, and so the Grimy Goons were quickly reduced to jokes and their spot in anyone's "Three gangs" list will usually go to the Pirates.
    • Elise Starseeker, who apparently is reckless enough to lead a bunch of kids into such a dangerous place like Un'Goro crater. While the Un'Goro cinematic trailer portrays her as a competent leader, it isn't uncommon to see comments like "Those kids are doom!" whenever it plays.
  • Memetic Mutation: Has its own page.
  • Memetic Psychopath: A variation. While Bartender Bob is meant to be portrayed as a friendly, if slightly clueless bartender, he's often portrayed as a warmonger who profits off of Playing Both Sides of the League of EVIL/League of Explorers conflict, as well as the entirety of Battlegrounds mode. It doesn't help that some of his quotes can come across as a bit duplicitous (i.e. Telling every player in Battlegrounds that he's secretly rooting for them, or praising some of the minions you buy from him only to backtrack and claim that "he didn't like them either" when you sell them back)
  • Memetic Troll: General rule of thumb is that, while you control a lot of minions, anything that can randomly summon a Doomsayer to blow them all up probably will. Piloted Shredder is the most infamous offender, especially as most of the value from the Shredder's Deathrattle is letting you maintain field presence; obviously, spitting out a Doomsayer doesn't do that very well.
  • Moral Event Horizon: Tamsin Roame crossed this at... some point. Maybe it was when she started working with the Burning Blade, maybe it was when she used a corrupted Naaru shard to start a demonic invasion of Stormwind, maybe it was when she ripped apart her own father's mind and turned him into an undead flesh golem... really, the choice is yours. But in the end, even her own Former Teen Rebel sister Cariel declared she was Beyond Redemption with that last one.
  • Most Wonderful Sound: Many have grown fond of the quotes exclaimed by the minions.
    Mechwarper: Powering up! Portals online!
    Sen'jin Shieldmasta: Taz'dingo! Hyehehehyes!
    Snowchugger: Chugga chugga, chugga chugga.
    Lord Jaraxxus: You face Jaraxxus, EREDAR LORD OF THE BURNING LEGION!
    Leeroy Jenkins:

    Cabal Shadow Priest: Let me change your mind!
    Knife Juggler: Put this apple on your head!
    Kezan Mystic: The Light does not discriminate!
    Murloc Knight: Mrglmrgla!
    Antique Healbot: BACK FROM THE JUNK HEAP.
    Crazed Alchemist: You'll love my new recipe!
    Reno Jackson: We're gonna be rich! Cue music.
    Ragnaros, Lightlord: LIVE, INSECT!
    Lyra the Sunshard: BEHOLD the glory of a new sun!
    Saronite Chain Gang: How looong can this go on? (How looong can this go on?)
    Zilliax: Unity. Precision. Perfection.
  • Nightmare Fuel: See here.
  • Periphery Demographic: The game has a surprisingly large female players compare to other Blizzard games or even other TCG, with many of them are respected figures in the community and even participate in tournaments. Reasons were given that the game's accessibility, being played online with no indication of the gender of the player, striking animation, good gender balance in minions card arts and two of the basic Heroes are female along with 7 more can be unlockable (to the point that one entire class, Rogue, is only represented by female characters) all attract female gamers.
  • Polished Port: The mobile version. The UI is kinda cramped and the file size is way too big, but other than that it's a flawless port of the PC version and depending on your mobile device can come with additional quests that offer extra packs. It is unquestionably the most popular version of the game and the main reason why Hearthstone is so widespread.
  • Replacement Scrappy:
    • Inverted with the new Warrior alternative hero. Magni was much more beloved by the fanbase than Garrosh due to being a delightful lovable Large Ham and giving the players the first Dwarf heroes while Garrosh is perceived as a Base-Breaking Character Creator's Pet from the original game, as well as his one-note quotes in this game. To rub it in further, all of Garrosh's special interaction has been negative with various legendary minions took a jab as him compare to Magni's heartwarming moment with his brother Brann Bronzebeard (see below).
    • Also inverted with Deathwing, who has the nostalgia factor from both Wo W and Hearthstone player and Annhylde for being the first female Warrior hero.
    • Also inverted with Tyrande, who is one of the most popular skins in the entire game.
    • Starting around 2018, Blizzard began issuing new cards in Classic and Basic to replace cards that were rotated to the Hall of Fame. While a few, such as the new Legendaries, SI:7 Infiltrator, and Plaguebringer are tolerated, most of the others are seen as being various degrees of terrible and see no play whatsoever. Radiance (the replacement for Mind Blast) in particular is considered trash by almost everyone, even without taking into account that it's a strict downgrade from two different cards in Wild.
  • Rescued from the Scrappy Heap:
    • Blackrock Mountain was generally criticized for the majority of its cards just not being usable due to relying on dragon synergy that you couldn't reliably build your deck around. After The Grand Tournament introduced some core support cards (specifically, dragons with Taunt), most of the Blackrock cards are now genuinely usable and Dragon archetypes are high-ranking decks. The shining example would be Dragon Priest - a Tempo deck for a class that was previously only playable as control decks.
    • On a meta example, the gnomes. In the original game, they're The Scrappy but was much more well-received in this game due to being the focus for the GvG expansion and is the image of many powerful cards (Recombobulator, Shrinkmeister, Shieldmaiden, Spider Tank, Tinkmaster Overspark, Loot Horder, Knife Juggler, Leper Gnome, Mind Control Tech etc.)
    • Any bad card that suddenly becomes good (or at least interesting) due to future sets gets this reaction. Y'Shaarj, for example, was widely considered the lamest of the Old Gods due to his lack of build-around potential and straightforward effect. One Night in Karazhan made him much more intriguing due to his synergy with Barnes, spawning unique, spell-heavy Warlock and Hunter decks. Mean Streets of Gadgetzan straight up made him competitive, if his inclusion in some Control Shaman lists is anything to go by.
    • For the longest time, Discard Warlock was considered the absolute worst archetype for the class. Because discard effects choose the discarded cards at random, any sort of Discolock attempt inevitably becomes an RNG-fest based on whether you can draw your good cards and avoid discarding them. And, of course, discarding cards willy-nilly means you run out of steam very quickly, leaving yourself open for your opponent to punch your face in. To add insult to injury, Discard Warlock got a quest in Journey to Un'goro, which ended up being one of the worst in the set. After several expansions of crappy Discolock cards that failed to fix any of the archetype's problems, the archetype was finally salvaged in Rastakhan's Rumble, which introduced controllable discard effects and cards that recoup card advantage. While still not a top-tier threat, Discard Warlock is certainly no longer a laughingstock, if the inclusion of High Priestess Jeklik and a handful of discard effects in some Control Warlock lists is anything to go by.
    • Before the release of The Witchwood, Baku the Mooneater and Genn Greymane came under scrutiny for their effects, which require the player to play only odd-cost or even-cost cards respectively in their deck in return for a buff to their starting hero power. Many players wrote them off initially due to this harsh deck-building restriction forcing players to drop half their collection for an upgrade that may or may not be any good, not helped by the severely limited support for odd- and even-exclusive decks. However, Baku and Genn shattered expectations to the point where they became The Witchwood's biggest contribution to the Year of the Raven meta; by the release of Rastakhan's Rumble, players were judging cards based on their viability in odd and even decks and eventually they, along with the other odd/even specific support cards, would become the first cards to rotate out of standard after just one year in.
    • Reno, the Relicologist was, at first, the biggest laughingstock out of all the Saviors of Uldum cards, due to how seemingly underwhelming his effect was (deal 10 damage spread across enemy minions if your deck has no duplicates), especially when compared to the old Reno Jackson (which restores your hero to full health under the same conditions). Then the set launched and most of the hatred dissipated pretty quickly, due to his effect essentially being "if your opponent plays aggro, kill their entire board" in practice, as well as Zephrys the Great being good enough to make people want to play Highlander decks.
    • Battleground rescued a whole lot of cards that is considered underwhelming or even downright terrible in the other modes. Most notable examples include Murloc Tidehunter, a majority of the Mech tribal minions, Rat Pack, Coldlight Seer, Cave Hydra, Floating Watcher, Baron Rivendare, Maexxna and Nightmare Amalgam.
  • The Scrappy:
    • Alleria Windrunner, the original alternate Hunter hero, was met with scorn when she was launched. Many people have cited that although her voice actress was probably going for a nonchalant attitude, instead Alleria sounds downright bored most of the time, with very few of her lines having much, if any, emotion behind them. The fact that her only potentially meaningful interaction with her sister Sylvanas was cut and players have to pay don't help her case either.
    • Pen Flinger, a solid but overall balanced card, consistently tops players' "most hated cards" lists. It's a 1 mana 1/1 that deals 1 damage to any target, with the Spellburst effect of returning to the hand. What makes it so hated is the card's flavour. It flings a pen, saying "Hey, loser!". When it returns to hand, it says "Wasn't me!". You will hear this sequence of quotes over and over again as it chips down your board and/or face tick by tick. It always bounces to the hand, so a smart opponent will never ever let you destroy it. There are decks that can fuel it throughout the whole game, so you just have to sit there and get called a loser a hundred times over.
  • Scrappy Mechanic:
    • The sheer amount of random effects in the game can drive players insane. Between Arcane Missile-like spells not hitting the right targets, sticky minions or spells giving you the wrong minion (like Doomsayer or Bomb Carrier), Tavern Brawl which features some random effects such as random draw or random casting cost, etc, expect lots of rage. The Discard mechanic from Warlock is a prime example of this because of the inconsistency the mechanic presents.
    • Silence, a rare card effect that removes all text from its target, is widely despised. It shuts down buff-centric combo decks, allows aggro decks to effortlessly get past taunts and utterly neuters at least a quarter of the cards in the game. While ultimately a necessary evil, as some cards and strategies can be overwhelming to beat without it, it's infuriating to fight to the point where even the devs don't want to add any more cards that can inflict it due to how anti-fun it is. These days, Silence effects tend to be given only to Priest, with class identity being the reasoning.
    • Joust, a mechanic wherein you reveal a minion from both player's decks. If your minion costs more, you win the Joust and get a powerful effect! This was a mechanic meant to combat the problem of aggro being overly prevalent in the meta by giving decks a direct benefit for running high-end cards...the main problem being that Blizzard was apparently scared of Joust being too good, and as a result most of the Joust cards are pitiful if they lose. And since no deck will ever not run low-cost minions, you always run the risk of your Joust failing entirely. It doesn't help that some of the Joust cards aren't even that good if they win, resulting in a mechanic that goes mostly unused.
    • While the separation between Wild and Standard Mode was a big point of contention, the fanbase universally loathed the fact that past expansion packs and adventure cards were taken out of the store, forcing players to craft every single card from them individually with dust. Many of these cards are Game-Breaker themselves and essential in Wild, plus new players lost out on the fun of playing through the old adventures. Eventually Blizzard acquiesced and put rotated packs and adventures back up for sale, but only through their online store and only for money rather than in-game gold, so a bit of Scrappy Mechanic still applies.
    • The Artificial Stupidity displayed by many of the bosses in the Adventures. Bosses regularly fail to use abilities that boost their attack before attacking, play cards that synergize together in the incorrect order, fail to clear the board when they should, and regularly kill themselves by attacking a high-damage minion when they're at low health. This may be to balance out their overpowered cards and abilities, especially in Heroic Mode, but the lack of smart play is still noticeable.
    • As of the expansion The Mean Streets of Gadgetzan, the Jade Golems, a mechanic used by the Jade Lotus faction (which includes Shamans, Druids and Rogues). Basically, for every Jade Golem the player summons on the board after the previous Golem, it gains +1 attack/+1 health. (2/2, 3/3, 4/4, 5/5, 6/6, etc.) If left uncontested, and with good RNG, it's not uncommon for them to go as high as 14/14!!
      • Most of the hatred for the Jade Golem mechanic is a result of Jade Idol, a Druid card that basically gives them an infinite engine of Jades given enough time (or a Gadgetzan Auctioneer). This effect is despised for its ability to run over control decks—Control Warriors and Priests whose end-game plan often involves outlasting an opponent in fatigue flat-out can't win against a mechanic that prevents fatigue in the first place. There were frequent demands for nerfs on social media... instead, Blizzard printed a tech card counter in the next expansion in the form of a 6-cost 4/6 minion with a battlecry that destroys all 1-cost cards in both players' hands and decks. Jade Druid is still played, but not nearly as dominant as it once was, and other control decks have reappeared.
    • The barrier to entry for newcomers. While Standard mode alleviates some of the headaches from the days before, the sheer amount of cards available in Standard Mode (many of which have real game-changing capabilities that cannot be countered by basic cards) still can make a lot of newcomers feel very discouraged when the premade decks consist mostly of cards they don't have. Especially when non-basic cards randomly come from booster packs that cost money and adventures that also cost money. The start of each new Standard rotation helps even the playing field, but deeper into the cycle the card pool grows and the paywall rises.
    • The price model for Adventures were disliked for two reasons:
      • Adventures had to be bought and played through to earn any of their cards. You cannot craft cards from the adventure while it's still in Standard, and instead had to beat the bosses in order and earn the wing rewards. For players who weren't there when the adventure dropped or just want a few key cards, this is a lot of work and a lot of money/gold to pay up front. While you can freely craft adventure cards once they rotate into Wild, that's still a two-year wait on what might be a deck-defining card.
      • Blizzard decided with the Year of the Mammoth to start doing expansions only instead of alternating Expansion/Adventure, with periodic single-player content folded in. Some players viewed this as a cash grab, because expansions involve many more cards, much more RNG (in an adventure, you knew exactly which cards you would get with every wing you purchased, while expansion cards come from booster packs and epics/legends drop much less frequently), and much less opportunity for saving up in-game gold.
      • They eventually alleviated some of these issues with the introduction of mini-sets, 35 card bonus sets. They can be bought up front without having to go through single-player content (for cheaper than adventures as well), or crafted individually like regular cards. Granted, this is even more cards per block, but at least players can buy a guaranteed set of cards in bulk for a fair price.
    • Zig-Zagged with the Spell Hunter deck archetype. Two cards released in Kobolds and Catacombs, To My Side and Rhok'delar, had restrictions on their effects that required a deck with no minions in it. To My Side got a lot of hate for being revealed first without Rhok'delar for context and for just being weak even if you fulfilled its requirement, and Spell Hunter was a heavily despised archetype before release and seen as yet another attempt to force meme archetypes for a class which was already struggling to be competitive and has very few good legendaries. Come the release of the expansion, and Spell Hunter ended up being a good deck without those two cards. Players realized you could swap out Rhok'delar and To My Side, replace them with Barnes and Yshaarj, and have a significantly stronger deck.note  But since Barnes and Yshaarj were slated to rotate to Wild in a few months, this was short lived, and the true Spell Only Hunter was still weaker... until the ever-increasing power of Deathstalker Rexxar and a wealth of good cards in the ensuing expansions brought Hunter up entirely as the powerhouse of the Boomsday meta. By Rhastakan's Rumble and the Zul'jin hero card, true Spell Hunter became a top tier deck in a top tier class, and yes, it ran two of To My Side.
    • The rewards track that was introduced with Madness at the Darkmoon Faire is widely disliked for a couple of reasons. The reward structure is inconsistent, meaning it's possible to play for hours without earning any material reward, and the playtime calculations used for experience gain makes it a viable strategy to rope every turn for more experience, which can be very infuriating if you're just trying to quickly complete matches. On top of all that, the way the rewards are structured means that, on average, decently dedicated players will get about 2000 less gold over the course of an expansion than they would under the previous rewards system. Blizzard took this feedback to heart though, both greatly lowering the XP needed for each level as well as replacing some of the more underwhelming rewards with more gold (and giving some apology packs to everyone for free).
    • Mercenaries mode has earned quite a negative reception for certain aspects:
      • You cannot keep track of how many tasks you have completed for specific mercenaries and you aren't told of what task you will get from the Mysterious Stranger. The result is that you can find yourself getting an undoable task, like completing a bounty with that mercenary at level 30 when he is only around level 10-20 and there is nothing you can do outside of abandoning it.
      • You must deploy 3 mercenaries on the field at all times. You cannot just play one or two and bench the rest. This results in many strategic options being cut out.
      • Many players have complained about the poor task design from Task 9 and beyond for the individual mercenaries, due to them often having ridiculous conditions that make them undoable by themselves along with requiring an excessive amount of usage or damage dealt. Bonus "points" if the ability required also has a cooldown. It shows when there are entire threads dedicated to a certain mercenary's task.
  • "Seinfeld" Is Unfunny:
    • The voice acting and visuals were outright revolutionary. Each individual minion has some kind of personality to them because of their voice acting, and the detailed battlegrounds and artwork made the game feel very much alive. It was the first card game to be immersive, which was quite the draw. Every Card Battle Game since then has included these in the hopes of taking Hearthstone's crown, and among the fanbase they're mostly taken for granted nowadays.
    • The game's barrier of entry is pretty steep, especially compared to more generous alternatives, but at the time of its release Hearthstone was the cheapest card game on the market by a massive margin due to both the in-game dust economy and the lower amount of cards needed for decks, as well as the fact that simple grinding could get you far. Over time, people decided that while it was cheap for a card game, it was too expensive for a video game, and despite efforts to reduce the barrier of entry via more free stuff and higher paying quests, the game's cost is still too much for some people.
  • Sequel Displacement: Like its own "father" series to Warcraft, Hearthstone is more familiar to some people than World of Warcraft since the two games are completely different genres, and Hearthstone has its own, bigger audience on mobile. Lampshaded in Blizzard's 2016 April Fools joke.
  • Shocking Moments:
    • The announcement of the Mech-vitational event in June 2019. To celebrate the event, Blizzard made some massive changes regarding The Boomsday Project. A new Legendary was added to the set - SN1P-SN4P - which was given away for free to every player who logged during the event's run. Rather than a meme card, SN1P-SN4P is actually a fairly useful Mech, and has both Echo and Magnetic, a combo that hadn't been seen before. More than that, Blizzard buffed eighteen cards from the set, two per class. Hearthstone hasn't had a direct card buff since beta. Some of the changes are minor, but other push cards from trash tier to being actually really good or at least worth considering. Needless to say, this massive, free, positive meta shift had players blown away.
    • After years of nine classes being the status quo for the foreseeable future, the start of 2020 threw a huge curveball by adding the brand-new Demon Hunter class with Illidan as its representative, especially since the playerbase had more or less resigned to seeing Illidan as just a C-list Legendary at best. Suffice it to say, players were not prepared.
  • Stoic Woobie: While Genn Greymane is generally a stoic person, his concern for Tess at the start of Monster Hunt and tells her to be careful because she is the only child he has left makes him this, especially if she is defeated during the Monster Hunt or the Hagatha fight. More so if you are familiar with his Warcraft's storyline and Liam's death.
  • "Stop Having Fun" Guys: Like many games with a competitive "eSports" scene, the lower echelons of Hearthstone's Ranked mode are dominated by people who the metagame doesn't affect, who insist you should follow it anyway. The Meta doesn't really start applying until the upper teens in ranked mode, at the very earliest. This isn't to say following some common wisdom can't make you a better player, but rather, that some take this far too seriously.
  • Surprisingly Improved Sequel:
    • League of Explorers came after the consecutive failures of Blackrock Mountain and The Grand Tournament, was the first adventure not to be based on an existing Warcraft raid, and had a campy treasure hunting theme to it, causing players to be extremely skeptical of its quality. Then it came out, and it was awesome, to the point where when asking what the best Hearthstone expansion is, most will point their fingers towards League.
    • Journey to Un'Goro had people unimpressed during the pre-release, having come off the heels of One Night in Karazhan and Mean Streets of Gadgetzan, as well as the impressions that Quests would reduce diversity and that Paladin and Priest would be doomed to suck. Then it was released, and not only did it end up creating the single most diverse meta in the history of the game (with 8 out of 9 classes competitively viable), but it ended up producing multiple fan-favorite cards. The only problem people had was that the sheer amount of cool cards in the set made it more expensive than usual.
  • Take That, Scrappy!:
    • Given how controversial Garrosh is in the main game, Cairne Bloodhoof's (one of the canonically more sensible characters) jab when summoning against him ("You are not fit to rule the Horde") is seen to reflect the fanbase's opinion on his leadership. Similarly, the Priest legendary Vol'jin also took a shot whenever he summons against Garrosh by smugly asking "Who be da Warchief now?"
    • To rub it in further, one of the Warrior's alternative hero Magni special interaction is with his brother and legendary minion Brann Bronzebeard, and that is a heartwarming moment of Brann asked Magni if he had seen their missing brother Muradin lately.
    • Similarly, Spellbreaker makes a great finisher for players who hate playing against Mages with his attack cry: "Die, Mage!"
    • Eater of Secrets, a 4 mana 2/4 that destroys all enemy secrets and gains +1/+1 for each one destroyed, was created for 2 reasons: to function as a substitute for Kezan Mystic as an anti-secret card, as she was rotating out of the Standard format, and to act as a huge middle finger to the infamously broken Mysterious Challenger, to the point where Eater's summoning dialogue is a joke at Challenger's expense:
    Mysterious Challenger: Who am I? None of your business!
    Eater of Secrets: I know who you are.
    • After Jade Druid became one of the most hated decks in the game by virtue of Jade Idol, a 1-mana spell that can churn out arbitrarily large minions and indefinitely stave off fatigue, Blizzard responded by creating Skulking Geist, a card that destroys the deck with extreme prejudice by removing every single 1-cost spell in both players' decks. To cap it off, this is the flavor text for Skulking Geist:
    "It's as though a million Jade Idols cried out, and were suddenly silenced."
    • The "Road to Northend" gave one to Bookmaster Bae Chao (widely considered to be an annoying overpowered boss in the Dalaran Heist Adventure). Not only dialogues reveal that she was forced to move after the invasion, she was given a tongue lashing from the League of Explorers for being overly concerned with her books when Galakrond is about to be awakened.
    • Not a fan of the Alliance and/or Horde, especially after the events of Battle for Azeroth? Galakrond can take care of that little issue in Rafaampage!, the second fight in the final chapter of Galakrond's Awakening, League of E.V.I.L. side, in where he (along with Rafaam) flattens both Stormwind and Orgrimmar.
  • That One Achievement:
    • "YoggChamp" and "Forbidden Jutsu" are some of the rarest achievements in Constructed (minus the ones that require insane grinding). The former requires Oh My Yogg! to deal lethal damage to the opponent, and the latter requires Shadow Clone to summon a 10+ cost minion. Those rely entirely on actions from your opponent, with Forbidden Jutsu requiring a colossal misplay (from some not-so-common cards) and YoggChamp is 100% RNG. Dean Ayala apologized for them and promised not to make overly RNG-reliant achievements going forward.
    • "brb", which requires you to get first place with A. F. Kay in Battlegrounds after "going AFK" on turn three, which is when she gets her massive power spike. The main issue here is that it's vague as to what "going AFK" actually means; can you still buy minions but just not play them? Can you use your Discover cards? Can you still freeze and level? Are you allowed to spend gold at all? That's without getting into how, even in the best case scenario, you still have to take a hefty loss just to get the achievement, and you still need to get lucky enough to score first place. This is widely considered to be the hardest achievement in the game, and it's generally agreed upon that the only way to get it is to get something absurd off of your Discovers and cheese out the game.
    • Speaking of Battlegrounds, "Spicy Pretzel Mustard" requires you to win a game of Battlegrounds without losing or tying a single time. It's certainly doable, but you need a strong early game and the ability to transition to a fantastic end game, and you need to end the game quickly.
  • That One Attack:
    • Baron Geddon's Living Bomb, especially in Heroic mode. For one, personally killing your own minion is difficult on its own (as Gothik's fight could attest), although some classes are better at it. So the most common option is to send your minion to his/her/its death... except that quite often Geddon has no minion to send your minion into to die. Unless you have Silence effect in your hand, prepare to have your side wiped and take massive damage, and even if you do have Silence in hand, that may screw up your mana spending for the turn and make you take massive damage from his hero power anyway.
    • Also from Blackrock Mountain, Maloriak's Release the Aberrations! on Heroic. While the card itself isn't any different from the Normal mode version, Maloriak's hero power on Heroic gives his minions +2/+2 on summon... so the three 1/1 Charges (which are mostly a minor nuisance) suddenly become exponentially more threatening at 3/3. That's up to 9 face damage per turn that can also completely decimate early boards if Maloriak decides to trade with them. And since it's 2 mana, he can Coin it out on turn 1, at which point you've basically already lost.
    • From Priest, Mind Control. The ability to steal cards from your opponent has shown itself to be one of the most unfun ones in the game, and Priest's cards are in fact around how unhappy your opponent is with them. At 8 mana, Mind Control was perfectly balanced and wasn't particularly fantastic or weak... but having a minion stolen made players feel really bad. As a result, Blizzard nerfed the card to 10 mana entirely so it wouldn't feel as bad to have it played against you. This had the effect of essentially removing the card from the game, as it was now too expensive to be worthwhile and Priest eventually got Entomb, a card that is explicitly better than it most of the time.
    Nominated as "Spell Most Likely to Make Your Opponent Punch the Wall."
    • From the Monster Hunt:
      • Experiment 3C's Amalgamate spell. It's an 8 mana spell that destroys all minions, akin to Twisting Nether, which also summons an Amalgamation with the combined stats of those destroyed minions; it's very rare for the Amalgamation to have less than 15/15 worth of stats. Hope you drafted hard removal, because if you didn't, you're not getting that thing off the board before it kills you. And 3C has three of them in its deck.
      • Gnomenapper's Sack of Gnomes, a spell that fills his board with random Gnome minions for a meager 4 mana. Not only does this make you face down 7 minions at once on turn 4, when you probably don't have any board clears to work with, but gnomes in this game include some nasty customers like Rin, the First Disciple, a resilient Taunt that also threatens to destroy most of your deck, and Mekgineer Thermaplugg, an enormous 9/7 beater that can churn out Leper Gnomes if left unchecked. Once again, all this can show up on turn 4.
      • Azalina Soulthief's Soul Assimilation is basically what happens when you take Mind Control and crank it up to eleven. It destroys all of the user's Wisps and then steals an equal number of enemy minions, for the low, low cost of four mana. Keep in mind that Azalina's gimmick can easily cause her entire board to be filled with Wisps, and even if you manage to kill them all in one turn she can simply use her hero power for two mana and spit out three more Wisps before using Soul Assimilation. Using it with even just three Wisps causes an insane tempo swing in her favor, using it with seven can essentially be a Non Standard Game Over depending on how good your board is, and Azalina has not one, but two of the damn things in her deck.
    • The Rumble Run brings in War Master Voone and his Unbound Punisher, an 8-mana 4/10 whose Battlecry destroys all of your minions and grants Armor for each one destroyed. If Voone catches you flat-footed with this card, it can easily end your run there and then, as you'll need an extremely solid plan B to recover from losing your board and your Shrine.
  • That One Boss: See here.
  • That One Level: Anybody who wants the Nefarian cardback is going to have to endure the absolute hell that is Heroic Blackrock Mountain. The majority of the bosses are psychotically difficult to defeat even in comparison to the challenging Naxxramas, with special mentions going to General Drakkisath and Maloriak, who were so hard that even with an optimal deck your chances of winning were very slim. While the addition of more cards ended up making it more manageable (though Maloriak is still brutal), it's plausible that the sheer hair pulling difficulty of Heroic BRM was the reason League of Explorers and One Night in Karazhan toned down the challenge, to the latter's detriment.
  • That One Puzzle: Warlock's Apprentice, Dr. Boom's final Board Clear puzzle, is often considered by far the hardest one in the Puzzle Lab. Setting up a perfect Defile clear is difficult to begin with since you need to do a lot of careful health manipulation, and this one requires you to keep track of a dozen different minions and clunky buff cards while juggling a Wild Pyromancer. For most players, it's way too much to keep up with, and the puzzle has been known to stump even Legend-level players for hours.
  • That One Sidequest:
    • Among the original set of daily quests, Class Dominance daily quests (example: Druid or Hunter Dominance) are quite the slog. They ask you to use either of two classes and win five PvP matches with them, and completing them gives you 60 Gold, averaging at 12 Gold per win. "Class Victory" quests, another kind of daily quests, give you 40 Gold for winning just two matches, thus 20 Gold per win, making Class Dominance quests worth less for more hassle. Woe to you if you get three dominance quests in a row...
      • On the other hand, the amount of gold that you can get per day is limitednote . Having dominance quests thus allows for more gold per day, which means more packs or arena runs. Dominance quests is actually favored by Arena-only players because the quest alone contributes more than a third of the entry price to said arenas. However, this sentiment is only good before the year of the Raven; see below.
      • Before and shortly after Witchwood's release, the daily quest requirements and rewards were being rebalanced, on top of new quests being added to the roster. The vestiges of the old lineup are still visible, though, because while the "Class Dominance" quests now require three wins with one of two classes for 60 gold (as opposed to five), they're still less efficient than the new "Class Victory" quests, which now give 50 gold for just one or two wins.
    • Unite Against Mechazod used to occasionally show up in Tavern Brawls. Basically, he earns his spot in this game's that one boss page for a reason.
    • "Everybody! Get in Here!" requires 3 Tavern Brawl wins. If you don't like the current Brawl or struggle to complete it because of high variance involved, this will feel like a slog. You can only complete this quest while a Tavern Brawl is active, creating large holdover periods if left alone at the wrong time. The previous version of this quest required five Tavern Brawl wins, which was an even greater slog for those who didn't like the current Brawl. This has since been mitigated: Now the quest simply asks you to play 3 Brawls, meaning that you can just concede three times in a row to quickly grab the reward.
    • Quests that require you play a certain type of minion. These have a "reroll on sight" protocol among players due to them dragging out playtime with virtue of Padding.
      • For example, Murlocalypse requires you to play 50 Murlocs, and awards a hefty 100 gold. Keyword is "play", not "summon", so Murlocs generated by spells and effects don't count. This means you'd spend a minimum of two games to finish it, and that's if you're lucky enough to play all the Murlocs you can stuff into a deck before dying. If you lack a large enough collection of Murlocs, you'll be playing a lot of games working to complete it. The previous version of this quest was much worse, requiring you to play 75 Murlocs. It was lowered to 20 after some time.
    • The "The Meek Shall Inherit" and the "Only The Mighty" quests from the original set. Players often reroll them on first sight when given the chance because they are as big as a slog as the Class Dominance quests. This is because they require you to play 20 1-2 cost and 12 5-cost and above minions respectively, which often wrecks the balance of your decks if you need to clear them in the same day. There are entire boards dedicated to crafting decks just for clearing these two quests alone!!
    • The Play 3 games quest has a misleading description which hides its drawn-out nature. The quest says play 3 games (often restricted to specific classes), but in reality you have to either win (making this a Dominance quest by another name), lose from 0 HP (hope you play or run into a very aggressive deck), or wait for some 10 turns before you can safely concede (God help you if you run into a roper), resulting in quests that do nothing but waste players' time. There's also inconsistency problem: Other quests that require player to play X games allow players to concede literally before the first turn starts and still fulfill the requirement, which doesn't apply to Play 3 games quest.
    • The Weekly quests can easily fall under this. Outside of the spending mana and dealing hero damage quests, the other quests are often rerolled on sight due to the massive entry barrier makes gaining progress, let alone actually completing them practically impossible. Examples include: Dealing 1500 damage to opponent's minions or reaching Top 4 in Battlegrounds, use 50 Battlecry cards and use Hero Power 50 times. The biggest pain of them all? The "Win 5 games in ranked mode" quest. While you can reroll the quest, this also had the side effect of making playing on Casual practically pointless while the emphasis on winning has effectively turned the ranked ladders' meta downright cancerous as every player has to prioritise winning over having fun due to obligation. To obligate you into completing it instead of rerolling it, it has 750 more points than the other weekly quests, almost the same as a daily quest. The punchline? All non-completed weekly quests reset every week, with the aforementioned quest being shoved into your face along with two random others at the start, meaning that players have to go the extra mile to finish all three of them by the week's end to prevent losing rewards, turning gameplay into a weekly chore.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character:
    • Valeera received a major boost in popularity thanks to this game due to being the hero of the Rogue class, which meant she fought against other major leaders. This has yet to transfer into a bigger role for her in the main game, at best appearing as a supporting NPC in the Rogue Class Hall in Legion.
    • Dora R., the Night Elf reporter who is behind the newspaper clipping leading up to the Mean Streets of Gadgetzan expansion and is set up to be the Hero Antagonist of the three crime family, made no appearance in the expansion herself while the art that was used to represent her went to a non-Legendary minion Daring Reporter.
    • Professor Doyle, the main character of the Wonders of Un'Goro webseries promoting the Journey to Un'Goro expansion, is beloved by fans for his personality but made no appearance in the actual expansion. The fact that his webseries ended on a major Cliffhanger just made this worse.
    • The Bearshark zombeast in Knights of the Frozen Throne was hinted at early and given plenty of attention during the expansion's promotion if only for how ridiculous the concept was, all long before the card itself was actually shown. It then turned out that it was a low impact, but admittedly decent minion in the common slot with very little relevance.
    • Genn Greymane, a major World of Warcraft character and The Hero in pretty much every storylines that involved Gilneas, was reduced to just voice over for the first few encounters during the Single Player campaign and is not a playable hero. This is especially notable given that the Campaign opted to have two Original Generation characters to be playable instead of him (Toki and Shaw). Most of his role as The Hero in the storyline was instead given to his daughter Tess.
    • Wanderer Rexxar, the 1,000 win portrait for Hunter, was met with a lot of derision, to put it lightly. The artwork is a little too cartoony (Hearthstone is no stranger to cartoon art, but it seems out of place when the other heroes are made to look badass) and he has, well, a derpface. It's not helped by the fact that the subject is a total miss - it's literally just Rexxar from a different angle. They could've given him a new costume like Valeera or done a throwback and given him his axes, but instead it's boring and out of place. Alleria's Scrappy status and Hunter's lack of alt heroes (until the release of Sylvannas) really doesn't help.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot:
    • The alternative Hunter hero Alleria Windrunner is Sylvanas Windrunner's, an undead elf with family issues, long-lost sister. That is from the main game. You wouldn't know that when both of them are summoned or even from the flavor text as there is no mention of this relationship between them and there isn't any additional dialogue when the two of them fought with / against each other (Sylvanas is a neutral minion). The only clue we have of this relationship is that they have the same last name. Make you wonder why they even picked Alleria in the first place as there is no shortage of female rangers. It becomes even stranger given that many other family members do acknowledge each other, like Varian(Warrior card) and Anduin(Hero) or Brann(Neutral card) and Magni(Hero)
    • An attempt to avoid this and Conflict Ball is probably why Anduin Wrynn replaced Tyrande Whisperwind as the hero of the Priest class as the hero of the Druid class is her loving husband Malfurion. Not so much as in 2016 she became a Priest hero.
    • Despite One Night in Karazhan being advertised as a disco-fueled version of the original Karazhan raid, this isn't reflected at all in the actual adventure. For the most part, all it does is give the characters something to talk about and justify some redesigns to make Medivh, Moroes, and Barnes Lighter and Softer. Bizarrely, all of the actual party theming of the adventure was relegated to the Party Portals Tavern Brawl, where The Medivas are a constant effect on the board and you have cards to summon random partygoers.
    • Mecha-Jaraxxus has no interactions with normal Jaraxxus, neither when becoming him or seeing his opponent become him. It's especially disappointing since they obviously share a voice actor and it wouldn't have been hard to add a new line.
    • Deathwing has no interactions with any of his three card versions, nor does he have any responses to Nefarian or Onyxia (his children in lore) even though Nefarian had unique responses to the player dropping Deathwing in his boss fights. This is despite also having several unique responses to a seemingly arbitrary set of Warrior spells.
    • A (not completed) list of wasted interaction can be seen here.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks!: The promotional art for Death Knight Jaina is much more well-received that her Frost Lich Jaina art, which leading fans to bemoan why the Hearthstone team doesn't use it for the card.
  • Tier-Induced Scrappy: has its own page
  • Ugly Cute:
    • Many of the Mechs and Murlocs. Special mention goes to the Neutral minion Annoy-o-Tron, which was designed to invoke this trope and the Paladin minion Murloc Knight, who is wearing full Paladin get up while adorably sitting on a frog to join the Grand Tournament. The League of Explorers 0 mana 1/1 minion Murloc Tinyfin just outright removes the "ugly" part and dives right into the Moe territory.
    • The Silverware Golem, a boss from Karazhan who fights using Beauty and the Beast-style kitchenware and spouts off silly Non Sequitur nonsense with a goofy, high-pitched voice.
    • While a majority of Journey to Un'Goro cards are pretty majestic and awesome, a few is in this category. Most notably Hydrologist, the Flame Elemental token (created by Neutral cards Fire Fly and Igneous Elemental) and the Stone Elemental tokens (created by the Shaman card Kalimos, Elemental Lord)
  • Uncanny Valley: Unlike the stylized faces of most Ancients and Treants, Dame Hazelbark's face is eerily human. While it's ostensibly meant to make her look more grandmotherly, it instead got her branded as Accidental Nightmare Fuel from day one.
  • Underused Game Mechanic:
    • Enrage was originally a keyword in the Classic set and was geared to be Warrior's signature effect. Despite this, the only new Enrage cards were a single minion in GvG and two more in Old Gods. The ability was also horribly misused; the only Enrage cards that did anything besides strictly gain attack were Spiteful Smith, which gave your weapon attack, and Raging Worgen, which gained attack and Windfury. This is probably because it actually had a very niche design space, especially for what's supposed to be an Evergreen effect. This led to Blizzard scrapping the keyword in The Witchwood and just writing out what it did on each card.note 
    • Due to the meta mechanic of rotating expansions in and out, this automatically applies to any effect gimmicks directly tied to an expansion, at least in terms of new cards. Potentially cool keywords like Inspire and Overkill are left on very few cards, and are relatively unlikely to come back soon. The limit of locking keywords into their set of origin also reduces the chance for cool pairings.
      • Blizzard has been a little less stingy on this recently, printing SN1P-SN4P, a Legendary that uses both the Magnetic and Echo keywords (an often-suggested pairing because of the inherent synergy) as a free reward for an event. They've also confirmed that the Lackey keyword from Rise of Shadows will continue to get support (and even new Lackeys!) in future sets for 2019.
    • Specifically avoided by One Night in Karazhan, which added several support cards for previously abandoned ideas; Secrets got nice synergy cards like Avian Watcher, Cloak Huntress and Medivh's Valet, Warlocks got two excellent discard-related cards, Rogues got Ethereal Peddler to enable "thief" style decks, Paladins finally got their first Dragon-synergy card since Blackrock Mountain, Priest's Resurrect mechanic got a decent support in the form of Onyx Bishop and at last the neutral Violet Illusionist, the first card to grant your hero Immune since Mal'Ganis all the way back in Goblins vs. Gnomes.
    • In Blackrock Mountain, Hunters got a unique mechanic where if their hand was empty after playing a card they would get a bonus, similar to the Infernities from Yu-Gi-Oh!. Blackrock gave them two cards with this effect, The Grand Tournament gave them another one, and it seemed like it would steadily develop into its own thing until they simply stopped to give other ideas some love.
    • Journey to Un'Goro also makes an effort to reuse some of the older / rarely appear mechanic: Poisonous got a whooping 4 new cards and even appear as an option for the Adapt mechanic, minions that increase the mana cost in your hand got a new release in Emerald Hive Queen, Mage and Shaman receive another option to copy their friendly minions with Molten Reflection and Spirit Echo after Duplicate released all the way back to GvG and the permanent effect of the Portals appeared in One Night in Karazan and various Tavern Brawl is finally used in meaningful ways with the introduction of the Warlock quest and the Rogue Legendary Sherazin, Corpse Flower.
    • The Grand Tournament brought us Joust, which proceeded to go unused for years. Kobolds and Catacombs brought it back as a Mage mechanic, specifically to push a type of Big Spell Mage. Raven Familiar and Dragon's Fury might as well be Joust cards, since the only difference is they reveal spells instead of minions.
  • Unexpected Character:
    • Ragnaros was already a card in the Classic set, meaning that nobody expected him to get two more variants after this: Majordomo Executus from Blackrock Mountain, who transforms his owner into Ragnaros on death, and Ragnaros Lightlord from Whispers of the Old Gods, a "corrupted" (read: heroic) variant who heals instead of dealing damage. Fire Plume's Heart is another Ragnaros card, but people had grown accustomed to the yearly Ragnaros cards by this point and expected it, only to be blindsided again by Ragnaros' Midsummer Fire Festival, an in-game event hosted by him long after his initial incarnation was banned from Standard.
    • N'Zoth's appearance in Whispers of the Old Gods was completely out of the blue. Despite being one of the most important villains in the Warcraft setting, he never physically appeared, meaning that the decision to let him be introduced in Hearthstone, a 2nd level canon side-game, was quite the shock. To a lesser extent, there's Y'Shaarj , who was dead at the time of Whispers' release and similarly never appeared canonically.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic: Emperor Thaurissan's mission and voice acting from Blackrock Mountain (protecting his wife Moira or he will unleash his Hero Power of dealing 30 damage) are probably designed to give him Hidden Depths. The problem is that if you take control of her (which is probably your first line of thought if you play as a priest), due to Gameplay and Story Segregation, Thaurissan will use his card to actively try to kill her and then activate his ability. This essentially made his Roaring Rampage of Revenge completely nonsensical.
  • Unpopular Popular Character: Gul'dan (and the Warlock class in general) is mostly characterized in-game as a Bad Boss who is hated by his demons and recklessly sacrifice their minions and health. In real life, on the other hand, Warlock is one of the most consistent and popular class played by the fanbase ever since the game's creation.
  • Viewer Gender Confusion:
    • Lyra the Sunshard, the Priest Legendary minion for the Journey to Un'Goro set, has many people mistaken for a dude due to the filter of her voiceline in the game made her voice deeper than originally.
    • Many viewers were surprised when Splintergraft, Baku the Mooneater, and The Glass Knight from The Witchwood were all revealed to be female. Less so with Emeriss, who is established as female in World of Warcraft but still caused some confusion among players not well versed in the lore.
  • Win Back the Crowd:
    • Very frequently a card will be revealed to negative or lukewarm reception, only for that card to be officially released and be considered fantastic once players can actually play with them. The reasons why tends to vary, such as players not getting to see how Dr. Boom's deathrattle works, the assumption that Grim Patron wouldn't synergize with Warsong Commander (as she was bugged at the time), or simply not realizing how many options Druid had to abuse Volcanic Lumberer's cost reduction.
    • Tavern Brawl; a weekly event starting on Wednesday and ending Sunday were players can expect a different rule every week. These rules can range from every player is one of two bosses to every spell summons a random minion. Sometimes you play with your own cards sometimes you are given randomly made decks.
      • The best part though is not only do players get to play with cards they have never seen or used before, but the battles count toward experience and wins count to the 3 win gold. Many quests can be finished during the event as well depending on the week's rule. Plus your first win earns you a card pack, letting you expand your collection a little faster.
    • Following The Grand Tournament, the fanbase was fairly miffed. The Joust and Inspire mechanics were total failures outside of Murloc Knight and Confessor Paletress, the Grim Patron deck as it was known was almost completely obliterated by the nerf to Warsong Commander, there was too much annoying RNG controlling the game, and Secret Paladin, a notoriously brainless and overpowered deck, was plaguing the ladder along with a plethora of aggro decks. Faith in Blizzard was at it's lowest, when suddenly they smashed people's expectations with The League of Explorers. It introduced Discover, a fun variant on RNG that lets players decide the outcome, a large amount of unique, strong cards, and finally the introduction of Reno Jackson, the single most powerful anti-aggro card in the game.
    • One of the biggest complaints in the game's history is that aggro decks are inherently better than control decks due to a mix of aggressive cards being cheaper than defensive cards both in Mana cost and in dust cost. This leads to new players being encouraged to create very fast and aggressive decks that do their best to ignore the board and use cheap removal to shut down any big minions that would get in their way. Blizzard tried to encourage high-end deckbuilding in The Grand Tournament with Joust that... actually went pretty poorly. Then they tried again in Whispers Of The Old Gods by creating both a lot of impactful high-end cards and a lot of cards that support high-end cards, with the titular Old Gods all being 10 mana and having an effect on the board as soon as you play them. One of them, C'thun, also comes for free with your first Old Gods pack and gives new players a high-end card to build their deck around instead of being forced to rely on crafting aggressive cards. The patch that added the expansion also rebalanced a lot of the pre-existing cards, making neutral removal cost more.
    • A very minor example, but there are some cards that are meant to be built around and support cards which help those cards exist. Sometimes, those support cards get revealed or released before their build-around cards, causing people to hate on them for being useless and making no sense. Then, when their build-around card is revealed, said support card gets a bunch of love. A good example is Auctionmaster Beardo, who refreshes your hero power each time you cast a spell. Such an effect is almost nonsensical, as the whole point of the hero power is that it's overcosted in exchange for not costing a card. But Beardo wants you to spend a card and extra mana to waste more mana? Why does this exist? A week or so later, Raza The Unchained was revealed, the Priest legendary who lets your Hero Power cost 0 under Reno-like conditions. Suddenly, Beardo seems significantly playable in Raza decks as the biggest problem with him doesn't exist anymore.
  • Woolseyism:
    • Out of all non-English versions of the game, the Polish one is rife with these. Card descriptions are full of localized references to movies, songs, TV shows or folklore, the quotes said by many cards contain lines that retain the humor of the English version while keeping the meaning and most of the characters' names are literally translated from English to make them more "native sounding" (for example, Kazakus is changed to Kozakus, which is derived from the word "kozak", meaning "badass"). The Superlative Dubbing also helps. However, the Polish fan base is very divided whether or not Garosz Piekłorycz note  or Malfurion Burzogniewny note  is fine or if it's the worst thing that the translators ever done.
  • The Woobie:
    • In World of Warcraft, General Drakkisath was a one-note boss who was more of a blockade than a character. Here? He's a dude who thought the player was on his side and suddenly got betrayed by them. His emote response doesn't help, where he outright pleads with the player to tell him what's happening in a betrayed tone:
      General Drakkisath: Why!? Tell me why, please I liked you!
    • It was very clear from Vaelastrasz's quote that he doesn't enjoy working for Nefarian if he isn't corrupted and openly asked the player to stay away, even if he is threatening you. Hearing him beg for Alexstrasza (his mother in the original game), expressing regret for failing to fight his corruption when he defeat you and his attitude when defeated is just heartbreaking. It's pretty telling that he is the one boss where players considered Nefarian out of his Designated Villain status.
    • Valithria Dreamwalker from the Knight of the Frozen Throne first wing. She is clearly seen as in incredible pain by Lady Deathwhisper's Hero Power that keeps damaging her until she has 1 health. Fortunately, the player can heal her back to full heath and gloriously hit Deathwhisper for 30 health every single turns.
    • Jaina in the Knights of the Frozen Throne Prologue. Because of how the encounter is designed, she is always defeated by the Lich King despite all of her effort, got turned into undead as his servant and fights against her friend Tirion as Frost Lich Jaina. The worst part is that through out the fight, Tirion promised that he will arrive with reinforcement but is 1 turn too late.
    • Saronite Chain Gang, a minion from the Knights of the Frozen Throne set. Its pitiful quotes makes it very clearly that they are enslaved against their will. Doubly so if the players are familiar with the Warcraft lore.