The first Masters Tour event this year took place last weekend with almost 400 players battling it out in an online tournament. In addition to a share of the prize money, the enticing prospect of getting invited to Hearthstone Grandmasters was on the line. You can re-live the action with our spoiler-free post below.
Top 8 Decklists
These decks carried their eight respective pilots to the final day.
You can find the VoDs of the three days of competition below.
You can find out how the Top 8 single-elimination bracket played out within the spoiler below. The preceding Swiss results can be found here in full.
Rogue and Priest were the most popular classes brought in the final tournament before the rotation, but only the former performed well (53% winrate on Battlefy's stats). While over half of the players had Highlander Priest in their lineup, Anduin's fate was to end up at 46% winrate; only the barely-brought Shaman and Hunter were doing worse. Warlock was not on top of the popularity charts but it ended up performed well enough to end at joint top with Rogue in winrates. If you're encountering slightly more Zoolocks on the ladder than before, that might be why.
The esports year almost started right for Americas. Having struggled to get high finishes from non-GMs on Masters Tours last year, both McBanterFace and CaelesLuna made it to top 8 in Swiss. However, since Blizzard changed the rules for this year, single-eliminations began with a round of 16 with no extra points given to those getting eliminated and both aforementioned players found themselves on the short end of the stick.
Four players were significantly happier about the change as they progressed from the extra round without a top 8 finish, and Maverick even went all the way to the grand final. His good run ended with a 3-0 sweep in the hands of Xiaobai who continued where the Chinese left off last year as his compatriot XC had won the last tournament at "Madrid". Another country continuing to perform well was Japan, as glory's World Championship victory was followed by okasinnsuke's top 8 and trahison's top 4 finishes.
Despite their disappointing exit at round of 16, both McBanterFace and CaelesLuna secured valuable eight points which puts them on top of the Americas Grandmasters promotion list. In APAC, trahison's top 4 finish in addition to his previous performances make him the runaway leader who seems to have secured a GM spot this early already. His compatriot okasinnsuke also rose to fourth, but will still have to fight for the spot in future tournaments. In Europe, Turna's top 4 finish and his previous results were enough to get to tied second, and Maverick's finals spot got him to fifth, but the battle continues for both as the point differences at the top are very small.
You can follow the Race to Grandmasters on Blizzard's official esports page (not yet updated with Ironforge results at the time of writing).
The esports year continues with Hearthstone Grandmasters Season 1 starting on April 9th. Don't forget to tune in!