Quick Start Guide: Hearthstone Battlegrounds

by Phirex

Battlegrounds is a popular ‘autochess’ style within Hearthstone. It is unique as the first new game mode to be added to Hearthstone since the launch of the game in 2014. 

Battlegrounds can be played either via desktop, on the Battlenet client, or it can be played on the Hearthstone app on Android and iPhone.

For desktop users, you can download the Battlenet app here, then you can then download Hearthstone (as well as other Blizzard games) on the app. For Android/iPhone users, simply download the Hearthstone app on the relevant store. 

Battlegrounds is Blizzard’s take on the ‘autochess’ genre, the recently popular class of game that involves managing a squad of minions, with battles simulated by AI. 

Each game of Battlegrounds consists of eight players, with the goal of being the last player standing. The higher you finish in the match, the more ranking points you gain, finishing lower means you will find yourself sinking in rank. Players who finish fourth and above will always end up gaining a positive result. 

At the start of each game you will be given the choice of two heroes to pick from – purchasing the Hearthstone Battle Pass, however, will give you access to four. There are more than 30 characters in the pool – each with its own abilities and hero powers. 

It’s also important to understand that not all heroes are equal, so making sure you fully understand what each can do is essential. Hero powers can change the face of the game – giving your minions additional attack, health, or special abilities of their own. 

Hero List And Their Hero Powers

  • Millhouse Manastorm – Minions cost 2 gold, refresh costs 2 gold. Tavern tiers cost 1 more.
  • Nozdormu – Your first refresh each turn costs 0
  • Dancin’ Deryl – After you sell a minion, randomly give a minion in Bob’s tavern +1/+1 twice.
  • Arch-Villain Rafaam – Next combat, add a plain copy of the first minion you kill to your hand.
  • Deathwing – ALL minions have +2 attack
  • Yogg-Saron, Hopes End – Hire a random minion in bob’s tavern, and give it +1/+1.
  • Edwin Van Cleef – Give a minion +1/+1 for each minion you’ve bought this turn.
  • Sir Finley Mrrgglton – At the start of the game, discover a hero power.
  • Elise Starseeker – When you upgrade Bob’s tavern get a “recruitment map”.
  • A.F. Kay – Skip your first two turns. Start with two minions from tavern tier 3.
  • The Great Akazamzarak – Discover a secret. Put it into the battlefield
  • Pyramad – Give a random friendly minion +4 health.
  • Malygos – Replace a minion with a random one of the same tavern tier.
  • Infinite Toki – Refresh Bob’s tavern. Include a minion from a high tavern tier.
  • The Rat King – Whenever you buy a beast give it +1/+2, this swaps each turn.
  • Nefarian – Start of combat: Deal 1 damage to all enemy minions.
  • The Curator – Start the game with a 1/1 Amalgam with all minion types.
  • Sindragosa – At the end of your turn, frozen minions get +1/+1.
  • Millificient Manastorm – Mechs in Bob’s tavern have +2 attack.
  • Bartendotron – Reduce the cost of tavern tiers by 1.
  • Alexstraza – After you upgrade Bob’s tavern to tier 5, discover two Dragons.
  • Patchwerk– Start the game with 50 health instead of 40.
  • Queen Wagtoggle – Give a random friendly, Mech, Murloc, Beast, Demon and Dragon +2 attack.
  • The Lich King – Give a friendly minion reborn for next combat only.
  • Shudderwock – Your next battlecry this turn triggers twice.
  • Reno Jackson – Make a friendly minion golden (once per game).
  • George The Fallen – Give a friendly minion divine shield.
  • Lich Baz-hial – Take 2 damage and add a gold coin to your hand.
  • Ysera – At the start of your turn, add a Dragon to Bob’s tavern.
  • Lord Jaraxuss – Give all friendly Demons +1/+1
  • Professor Putricide – Give a friendly minion + 10 attack for the next combat only.
  • Galakrond – Replace a minion in Bob’s tavern with a minion from a high tier.
  • Fungalmancer Flurgl – After you sell a Murloc, add a random Murloc to Bob’s tavern.
  • Illidan Stormrage – Your left and right-most minions attack immediately.
Bob’s tavern

Minions in Battlegrounds are split into 6 tiers, with Tier 1 being the weakest and Tier 6 being the strongest. Minions are further broken down into their own tribes, of which there are currently 5 (Beast, Murloc, Mech, Demon & Dragon). There are also “tribeless” cards in the pool as well. 

All minions cost 3 gold and, at the start of the game, you will start with 3 gold increasing by 1 each turn. Each turn before battle you will be in the ’buy’ phase, where you can buy minions to put on your battlefield.

You can ‘reroll’ the minions if you don’t like what you see, giving you fresh options for minions – be careful, though, as rerolling will cost you 1 gold.

Also if there are minions you like but can’t afford this turn, you can freeze the board for free, ensuring you can pick them up next turn.

Players can also choose when to upgrade their tavern. Upgrading starts at 5 gold, and each upgrade costs more than the last. The number of minions offered in the tavern will increase as your tavern tier increases. 

Another important thing to note is that the minion pool is shared amongst all players, and there is a limited amount of each minion – so it might be worth keeping an eye on what your opponents are up to.

Finally, if you get 3 of a kind of a particular minion, those minions will fuse together and form a golden minion. This minion will come with increased stats and a more powerful effect if it has one. You will also be given a choice to pick a free minion from the tavern above you. 

For further information on how to get better at Hearthstone Battlegrounds, check out our other guides here. 

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