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Hearthstone - Heroes of Warcraft news » “Give It a Try,” Says HCT Sydney Winner

Another awesome Tour Stop is in the books, and the Hearthstone Championship Tour (HCT) has yet another surprise victor in Jack “Jakattack” Gifford. The 23-year-old New Zealand native recently graduated from Canterbury University, and is about to start a new job with an accounting firm. Amidst all that, he thought it would be fun to attend HCT Sydney. “My expectation was to show up, have fun, go 0-2, and then head off to work,” says Jakattack. “Prior to this event, I had no competitive Hearthstone experience.” Regardless of his experience level, Jakattack’s decision to compete paid off.

Jakattack didn’t set out on this path on purpose—even his registration was a bit of an accident. “If it wasn’t for the client advertisement for HCT Sydney, I would still be casually playing OTK Paladin,” Jakattack says, referring to the first screen players see when they load up the game. “My competitive Hearthstone career wasn’t even a consideration until this event.” Looking at what other options are available to him now, he says he wants to fight for some strong ladder finishes for points to try and qualify for Playoffs, or to potentially represent New Zealand in the Hearthstone Global Games (HGG).

Speaking to his strategy for the tournament, Jakattack admits he mostly wanted to play decks he was already enjoying. “That meant my first two decks were Spiteful Priest and OTK Paladin. After those two decks, I decided to build around a strategy of targeting the greedy Control Mages that had dominated previous HCT tournaments by picking Tempo Mage and the more aggressive Cube Warlock over Control.” By choosing between banning faster Paladin decks and Quest Rogue, Jakattack could either secure a better match for his own Mage or protect the remainder of his lineup, respectively.


Above all, Jakattack’s biggest takeaway from HCT Sydney was that more people should be competing. “If you want to get into the competitive scene, just get out there and give it a try,” he says. “I think a lot of players don’t understand how easy it is to get started, or how far you can go if you just have fun and play your own game.” He also felt that the Hearthstone competitive scene was welcoming, and that players shouldn’t shy away from getting involved.

Congratulations once again to Jakattack on his epic victory! We hope to see more of him in the coming months—and that his success inspires even more new faces to join us at future Tour Stops!

Do you think you have what it takes to compete in a Tour Stop? What deck lineup would you bring? Check back soon for the next instalment of What Sets the Pros Apart, where we’ll have a new feature about how to put together a tournament-worthy suite of decks.

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