Every time a new card game is announced, people ask if it would be the next Hearthstone killer. Let’s go over the history of that question.

As it happens every time a new card game is released, with the new Marvel Snap game, many players ask if it will be the one to kill Hearthstone. Before you think this is an apocalyptic article, hold on, I’m not saying Marvel Snap will kill Hearthstone. Today we are just going to go over the Top 5 games that “will kill Hearthstone”.

Top 5 games that Killed Hearthstone

Hearthstone wasn’t the first TCG, but it was the one that modeled the era of Digital TCGs and CCGs. The game appeared as a game in 2014, in an era in which games were made for PC and then adapted for mobile. 

Based on the established Warcraft universe, Hearthstone had a great audience to appeal to. Warcraft indeed had its own physical card game and could be called Hearthstone’s prequel actually.   

But today we are not talking only about Hearthstone. With the new Marvel Snap card game by Ben Brode’s game studio, many players revived the meme of this is the new Hearthstone killer. So here are the Top 5 games that Killed Hearthstone.

#5 Hearthstone Killer: Marvel Snap

Marvel Snap the Hearthstone Killer
Marvel Snap a new CCG in the Horizon brought by Ben Brode

Place #5 in our “Games that Killed Hearthstone” list goes for the recent Marvel Snap. Marvel Snap promises to be a great game, and with Ben Brode, former Hearthstone Game Director, leading the way, one could assume that could be a possible assassin. 

Marvel Snap’s team is formed by many former Hearthstone employees, and the easter eggs are everywhere. From Ben Brode’s trademark shirt to Dr. Doom summoning Doombots. Still, the game was just out for less than a week so we are not going to make bold predictions. Still, I imagine Marvel Snap murmuring “Watch your back”, as Valeera would say.

#4 Legends of Runeterra

Riot also took their shot at Killing Blizzard’s card game with Legends of Runeterra. In 2020, the American video game giant released a plethora of games in different categories. Runeterra, based on the popular League of Legends game, was said to kill Hearthstone.

Legends of Runeterra

Despite Runterra wasn’t able to kill Hearthstone, it had an initial success getting nominated for Best Mobile Game at The Game Awards 2020 and winning the Apple iPad game of the year in 2020. Furthermore, the game is still very much alive getting regular new content every couple of months.

#3 Magic: the Gathering Arena

The mother of all card games, Magic, also made its attempt to kill Hearthstone with its online version. Despite Magic being a well-established physical card game, the complexity of the game has turned into an entry barrier for many casual players that just wanted to jam some games on their phones.

Magic the Gathering Arena

Furthermore, it took years for Magic: the Gathering Arena to be available on mobile, losing a lot of players there. Truth to be told, Magic will never die, but at the same time, it seems that it will never kill Hearthstone either.

#2 Gwent: The Witcher Card Game

The late 10s were a prolific era for digital card games, Gwent is another example of that. Born out of a minigame inside the Witcher, Gwent took its shot at killing Hearthstone too. 

Gwent

Despite winning some awards upon release, Gwent is another failed assassin attempt at Hearthstone. Still worth mentioning, and while the number two spot might only be symbolic, we didn’t want to leave it out of this list for the popularity it had backed on its main game.

Hearthstone Killer list Honorable Mention: Teamfight Tactics

Before we jump to the #1 place in the list, we wanted to give Teamfight Tactics an honorable mention. I know it is an auto-battler and Hearthstone is a CCG, but despite that, TFT successfully carved out many players and content creators from Blizzard’s popular CCG. 

Teamfight Tactics

Riot tried to flank Hearthstone with both a CCG and an Auto Battler to compete against Battelgrounds. Don’t get me wrong, TFT has an enormous success and capitalized on the auto-battler trend in a few games, but still, it wasn’t able to Kill Hearthstone.

#1 Hearthstone Killer: Artifact

If you are new to the scene, maybe you weren’t able to see Artifact. Artifact, developed by Valve and based on the Dota 2 universe, had the classic recipe for success. The hype levels in late 2018 were to the roof, and pro-players and influencers were dying to get Beta access. Many Hearthstone content creators and pros, switched to Artifact when they got them.

Artifact was for sure the game that would kill Hearthstone. On top of the hype, Valve promised a $1,000,000 tournament for Artifact, aiming to attract many card game pros to develop a competitive scene.

Artifact the Hearthstone Killer

Well, you won’t believe me if I say that Artifact, the real Hearthstone killer lost 95% of its player base in just 2 months. The announced tournaments never took place, and the game just disappeared from Twitch, and from everywhere.

Some blame the economic system, others the complexity, among other causes for Artifacts’ failure, what we know is that it stabbed itself while trying to Kill Hearthstone. 

I hope you liked this journey to the past revisiting the launch and expectations many card games created and how the same question appears every time. Will this new card game kill Hearthstone?

Stay tuned to Esports.gg for more news and updates. See you next time in the Multiverse… I mean, the tavern.

Manuel

Manuel "Rane" Delgado

Writer of the Month: August | Twitter: @RaneTDF

Manuel “Rane” Delgado is an experienced Hearthstone caster, content creator, and tournament organizer from Argentina. He started his career on Esports casting his own tournaments, now he currently covers Hearthstone Grandmasters’ Americas region for LATAM, among other content creation. Besides esports, he works in a construction company, which made him kind of a "handyman" when fixing everyday house problems.