This weekend was the Hearthstone tour stop in Orange County, California. A total of 110 players participated in this three-day Hearthstone event. Many of the event regulars showed up again with all of Team Genji, Tempo Storm, F2K, and Red Reserve making an appearance. The competitors played through nine rounds of Swiss spread out over two days with the top 16 being played out on the third day.
The top 16 of this event was incredibly stacked, more than any other we have seen in recent months. There were only three lesser-known players making it through the Swiss rounds surrounded by 13 of the best Hearthstone players. A team that was very happy with their results in the Swiss was Team Genji, having four out of five players at the event making it through to the top 16.
The big winner of the Swiss was long-term competitor Impact. Impact has played at nearly every event over the last year and is now finally having the breakout performance he long deserved, making it through the Swiss with an impressive 9 to 0 match score and an overall win rate of 77.14%.
Monsanto got off to a good start picking up the victory with his Deathrattle Hunter deck, but Purple managed to turn things around picking up wins in both the Druid mirror and with his own Hunter deck. In the end, Monsanto managed to close out another series at a 3-2 score. Monsanto closed out seven of his nine series played in the Swiss in the same fashion.
We only got to watch the final match of the series between Hunterace and N0lan, at a 2-2 scoreline. The final match was between Hunterace’s Shudderwock Shaman and N0lan’s Inner Fire Priest deck. A great start for Hunterace and a double 3 roll on Lightning Storm put Hunterace in a great position to close out the game with ease.
The other matches were played off the stream, but here are the results of the series.
The next match we got to watch on stream was between Muzzy and Feno. The draws were not on Muzzy’s side after a strong performance in the Swiss. Feno managed to close out the game in one of the quickest series at the event.
After the quick 3-0, we got to watch the series between Megaman and Swidz, which we joined at a 1-1 scoreline. Up first was the Deathrattle Hunter of Swidz up against the Malygos Druid of Megaman. Megaman could not find the removal tools he needed, and Swidz managed to take both the third and fourth games of the series to close it out.
This was easily the most interesting match of the entire event. Both players played incredibly quickly and it went all the way to game 5, where Casie managed to close it out with just two health points remaining against the Odd Paladin of Impact.
Feno was on an insane winning spree at this point, closing out both his top 16, top 8, and now his semifinal matches 3-0. He left his opponents with no way to come back.
The final came down to the hunter decks of Casie and Fenomeno. Fenomeno eventually found the win with a very strong series of draws. We are happy to see Fenomeno finally get a win in the books. Feno has been competing for a very long time. His victory at HCT Orange County was inevitable with his long series of top 16-to-final placements. Fenomeno has long been one of the best players out there, always practicing or streaming to his Greek fans. Well done!
That was the quick recap of the HCT Orange County Tour Stop. Interested in more Hearthstone content? Check out our coverage of the new Blizzard Mobile app and our interview with Justsaiyan at the HCT World Championships earlier this month.
I’m Arend Zijdenbos, from the Netherlands. Gamer for as long as I can remember. My current focus is further improving at esports journalism. Currently, I write for Daily Esports and PCInvasion. For more of me, find me on twitter @Azijdenbos.