Twitter really is a marvellous thing; it puts you in touch with all sorts of people and groups that you wouldn’t ordinarily get a chance to meet. Groups like Hearth Battles – a new, South Africa Hearthstone community that’s on the precipice of launching.
I first learnt of Hearth Battles after the followed me on Twitter. Because I’m currently in therapy for Hearthstone addiction (soon to be replaced with Titanfall addiction) I was curious to learn more about this fledgling Twitter account that had very clear ties to a Blizzard’s new game. A couple of DMs later we’d exchanged email addresses and I was able to fire off a bunch of questions to the guys behind Hearth Battles.
The first thing I asked them to do was, in one sentence, to sum up what Hearth Battles is all about. Their response: “Making the ZA Hearthstone community more competitive and recognised one tournament at a time.”
Sounds good – where do I sign up?
The person behind Hearth Battles is Kordian Ignatiuk – some of you may know him by @CtrlAltDelZA on Twitter and gaming networks. You may also know him from Xboxreel.com, which he ran with Stuart “SilentiSonas” McGarrick and Nick “Holdenza” Holden a few years back. Hearth Battles is a new project, and one that grew out of Kordian’s minor obsession with the game.
“Before Hearthstone became an open beta, I trawled the net for every single Hearthstone beta key giveaway and had no success. I used to watch a lot of Twitch streams and got hooked on the game before I’d even had a chance to play it. The day it went open beta I messaged all my gaming buddies. We played for a week solid. We entered a couple of international tournaments but those were okay; we needed some local flavour.”
Hearth Battles is aiming to be a local community for everyone who enjoys the game. Kordian looks at it as a shot in the arm for the local Hearthstone community, whether you want to “compete or just simply ask for advice or offer a tip”.
While it’s still early days for Hearth Battles, the website and community already has ties with other online entities such as My-Gadgets.co.za who, we are told, are planning “some crazy things for the gamers that participate in our tournaments”. But Hearth Battles isn’t planning on stopping there; there are plenty of local companies and sponsors waiting in the wings already, and Kordian has plans to hopefully create some sort of official ties or recognition from Blizzard in the future. “We have done a bit of homework and the ZA Hearthstone community is very large, especially due to the fact it’s [in] open beta. Once we feel that we have attracted a decent number of gamers we definitely have a plan [to approach Blizzard].”
The website for Hearth Battles went live today on 19 February 2014; the community is just getting started. The plan, Kordian tells us, is to create a Hearth Battles ranking system for all local players who participate in the Hearth Battles-run tournaments. “We trying to pull out all the stops for now within our budget,” Kordian tells us. They plan on adding video tutorials on deck creation and providing post game analyses videos for many of the matches played during community organised events. “We really want this to feel like THE competitive community for Hearthstone.”
We know that Hearthstone has legions of followers and players here in South Africa, so there’s no reason why Hearth Battles shouldn’t take off. Hell, Dane and I still have nightmares about the weeks we posted those beta key giveaways; you lot nearly crashed NAG Online more than once.
Head on over to Hearth Battles and join the community; then diarise 15 March for the first of what will hopefully be many local tournaments; registrations are already open. We completely adore Hearthstone here at NAG, so we wish Kordian and his team the best of luck getting Hearth Battles up and running.