Class stats breakdown: Hunter rules the post-Naxx era of Hearthstone
Druid used to be the number one class played in tournaments worldwide and the one with the most wins. This was as of the opening weekend of the Hearthstone World Championship. Looking at the entire post Naxx data, however, Malfurion is dethroned by Rexxar.
Written by: Grace "Sylvanhunter" Naces and Radoslav "Nydra" Kolev
This article breaks down class popularity and win rates in the different regions and compare tournament stats in different periods of time. We'll see how different scenes prefer different classes and which two classes keep reappearing consistently. The numbers are extracted from the GosuGamers' tournament database, which itself is updated regularly and changes in real time.
Below are the win and pick rates in major tournaments before BlizzCon. In the popularity chart, Druid is king, leading with good 7% to Warlock and it barely loses the win-rate battle to Rogue by just 1%. However, with Druid having played almost twice as many games, we can safely say Malfurion's is the better performing class overall.
Right after BlizzCon, Druid's win-rate plummetted and left him fifth after Rogue, Shaman and Hunter, but recent tournaments fixed Malfurion's numbers. With BlizzCon, DreamHack Winter, ESL Legendary Series, G2A Masters and Heroes of Cards #3 combined, Druid is back on the top - now in both charts - followed closely by, surprisingly, Mage. While that's good news for Jaina, she's played less than 30 games, so her 55% win-rate might just be an anomaly and Hunter and Warlock - both at 52% but with three to four times more games - should actually be in the top three instead of Mage.
Let's look at some regional stats in both past month and for all time.
In North America, while Warlock is the most popular class played for the past month, the one that has the most wins is once again Druid at 72%, followed by Priest at 64% and Warlock at 57%. Shaman used to be very well represented right after the BlizzCon NA qualifiers when he was at the astounding 72% but has fallen to fifth place since. Surprisingly, Hunter is at the alarming 48% win-rate.
Looking at all-time win-rates, however, we do see that Americans do love their Shaman who's at 54% win-rate followed by Hunter at 54%. Druid came third at 52%.
Right now, Europe has more players than any other region in the top 50 and also managed to take the top spot off of Firebat as Kolento triumphed at Dreamhack Winter. Stats wise, Druid is once again on top, but this time he's joined by Hunter (53%) and Warrior (50%) in the top 3. And if the supposedly strong Hunter performed bad in the hands of the North Americans, for Europeans the OP class that doesn't do well is Warlock, down to sixth place and 47% win-rate.
For all-time, Rogue, Hunter, Druid and Warlock are the top classes with the most win rates and it is a close fight - all four classes are actually tied at 52%! And if Warrior had won one or two more games, he'd be up there as well, but as it is, he's fifth with 51%.
Recently, Hunter is the class that has the most wins among tournament players in China, followed by Warlock and Warrior. Rogue. With the recent data being too small post-BlizzCon, however (Warlock barely as 29 games as the most popular class), let's instead take a closer look at the all-time stats.
While Hunter is again in the top two just like in Europe and North America, it's actually Mage that beats him, and with more games played to that. Shaman, Warlock and Rogue follow to complete a very bizarre and uncommon for the west top 5. The oddities don't stop there. China's most played classes do not include Hunter as he's only 7th with 15% pick rate and Warlock, Druid and Rogue are the all-time popularity kings. We’ve seen LiBo and Tiddler Celestial make a name for themselves in Hearthstone history by winning a lot of money with Warlock.
Rest of Asia:
Hunter, Shaman and Warlock garnered the most wins in Asia in the past month while the most played classes are Druid, Warlock, Hunter and Shaman. Like in China, however, the recent database is too small to make any conclusions so we move on to the all-time stats.
Since the start of the Hearthstone scene in Asia, Druid has climbed on the top of both the popularity and the win-rate chart. Warlock and Shaman are runner-ups for the most picked category while Rogue and Warlock come second and third for the highest win-rates. What's noteworthy is that Hunter is never in the top three and is often neck and neck with Warrior.
Between expansions: Post-Naxx class stats and conclusion
While looking at all-time class numbers is fun as it paints the picture of competitive Hearthstone since game's beginning, the most relevant figures to look at are likely the combined ones post Curse of Naxxramas. Based on our stats page, the class with the most tournament wins is Hunter with 54%, followed by Warlock (of course) and Druid, both at 51%. Rogue is barely out of the top three as it lags behing 1% and is at exactly 50%.
Looking at the graphs below as well as the ones we reviewed already, a familiar trio of underdogs continues to struggle. Paladin and Priest are on the bottom in almost every region in any time-frame (bar the NA's past month records where Priest is actually second); Paladin is sometimes not even played for months on end. Mage is even worse: While we've seen players like Rdu, StrifeCro and Hyped win with Mage before, the class is down to 7th in win-rates and 8th in popularity.
As the meta changes, especially when the Goblins vs. Gnomes arrives and we welcome more players who use Android devices, will Hunter still remain king? Will Zoolock and Handlock fall out of favor? Will there be a new Rogue archetype? It has always been a close fight between Hunter and Warlock these days but with the exciting changes coming (and lots of RNG), there’s a lot of things to look forward to. Which class is going to rule when GvG arrives? Exciting times, indeed.
Before we close this piece and go on to enjoy GvG next week, let's have a quick look back at some of the decks that players from different regions brought to tournaments in the past month: