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We are pleased to have the opportunity to interview notable Singaporean Hearthstone player, and winner of the GosuCup SEA #1, Simon ‘pewpewurface’ Tay.
In our interview, we discussed about his thoughts towards his deck selection for the GosuCup, the Conquest format, the Blackrock Mountain cards that he is most excited about, as well as his ideas on how to expand the local Southeast Asian Hearthstone scene.
Congrats on winning the first week of the GosuCup SEA! How do you feel after being the champion?
I felt happy! 😀 It was my first win in the GosuCup, and after a few disappointing runs in local tournaments, it was nice to finally win something.
What were your thoughts on the meta going into the tournament, and your strategies for it?
Based on the previous local tournament that I have played in (Hearthstone Alley Fireblast II), most players brought aggressive decks like Face Hunter and Mech Mage.
With that knowledge, I brought three decks which have a fairly good win rate against aggressive decks, like Oil Rogue and Warrior, for the GosuCup.
Were your predictions right?
I think I predicted the metagame correctly as most players played Face Hunter. 😀
Focusing on your Mid-Range Warrior, is the match-up against aggressive decks superior to that of a traditional Control Warrior? Seeing how you do not have Shield Block, Whirlwind, Sludge Belcher, and Alexstraza, I can see how the match-up against aggressive decks might not be as great.
It may probably perform better against Mech Mage due to its larger number of mid-range minions, but what about the match-up against Face Hunter?
I actually brought this deck more for the Mech Mage match-up, as well as the pesky Tempo Mage which does well against Oil Rogue and Druid. Against the Face Hunter, it has a similar performance rate as the Control Warrior.
So basically you built the Warrior to handle more mid-range match-ups, whilst maintaining a similar win rate against Face Hunter. Does this build still have a good match-up against the Oil Rogue?
Yup! It’s important that you pressure the Rogue enough though when using this Mid-Range Warrior, because you can’t gain as much armor. However a well-timed Harrison Jones should be able to seal the game.
That is cool! One last question about your very cool Warrior deck: What is up with the Burly Rockjaw Trogg?
It’s good against spells, specifically Mage decks, and has a decent 3/5 for its cost: so why not? 😀
Excellent to see interesting cards in your decks. Moving on, what do you think about the Conquest Format? Do you like it more than the Last Hero Standing format, and if so for what reason?
Definitely! Because If I win my opponent would have no idea what my next deck is, so I have that surprise factor. 😀
Do you think Conquest is a good competitive format for Hearthstone?
It’s definitely better because it introduces another factor to consider when playing. Rather than just playing a counter deck to the winning deck under the old system, players need to consider the order of their match-ups in order to get the most out of their decks.
I don’t entirely understand, can you explain this idea more?
Let’s say you have Oil Rogue, and your opponent has Control Warrior. You know that the Oil Rogue has a poor win-rate against the Control Warrior, so you want to avoid that match-up.
You know your opponent will try to get the match-up, so he will try to construct a situation whereby you only have Oil Rogue left and he gets to pick his Control Warrior into it. Hence, it will be better to pick Oil Rogue at the start of the series because he has three decks to pick from and is least likely to pick his Control Warrior.
Okay, understood! That’s some deep strategy.
Moving on, what are your thoughts on the Blackrock Mountain cards! I see that you have slotted Emperor Thaurissan into every single deck that you brought to GosuCup. Was that to test the card’s effectiveness, or do you think it’s really that good?
I think it’s as good as Loatheb, if not better. It enables a lot of combos like Sylvannas Windrunner and Brawl in the same turn. It’s also a decent 5/5 for its cost as well. If you have more than six cards in your hand, you are already generating a lot of value. It also forces your opponent to clear it… It’s too good in short!
Obviously Emperor Thaurissan shouldn’t be in aggressive decks because there is neither much of a hand nor expensive minions, but do you think it belongs in almost every Mid-Range/Control deck? Are there any Mid-Range/Control decks that you don’t think Emperor Thaurissan should be in?
I probably won’t play it in Mid-Range Hunter, because there are not many cards to cut. It should probably be in every Mid-Range or Control deck though.
What other Blackrock Mountain cards are you very excited about?
I think Resurrect will be pretty good since you can get a 4/7 Injured Blademaster. Northshire Cleric is also a decent summon. Lava Shock also looks good. Maybe we can see Earth Elemental back in Shaman soon!
Looking forward to Dragon Consort, and of course..Hungry Dragon! :O
Resurrect is definitely an interesting card to be excited about! Finally, as a competitive Singaporean player, do you think you have enough opportunities to do well?
I personally don’t think so. Any tournaments won here is nothing as compared to the fame you will get from other overseas tournaments (Pinnacle 4 or Viagame House Cups).
We definitely do not receive as much repute as international events, but the GosuCup and Hearthstone Alley-organized events are a step in the right direction, wouldn’t you agree?
The problem is that these events lack publicity. Ideally, we would want people outside of Southeast Asia to recognize us, but because we don’t have events on the same scale (sponsorship or venue), we won’t reach the same level of fame and reputation.
In fact, even if you look at other eSports in Southeast Asia, the same difficulties exist. I think it’s partly due to the Southeast Asian mindset that eSports can never make a living. It’s also partly due to the smaller player base in Southeast Asia. It will take everyone’s effort to make it work; players, organizers, and sponsors all have to do their part. There’s very little we can do if everyone doesn’t put in the effort.
That’s a really strong view pewpewurface took at the end, though no words ring truer than those. Hearthstone Alley will do its best to provide the avenue for players to perform (through our tournaments), and we will constantly keep the community active with our regular content creation.
Thanks for reading!
Hey, I’m Avery. Been playing Hearthstone for a year, aiming to hit Legend rank consistently every month. Am looking to step into the world of Hearthstone media content, so if you have any feedback, please send it to Avery.firstname.lastname@example.org.
Edited by Silfer