There are many different types of Hearthstone streamers. There are your arena fanatics, grinding run after run in a quest to amass Kripp-tacular amounts of dust. There are the hardcore ladder grinders, playing only the best decks and fixated on attaining the highest Legend ranks. There are the Tavern Brawlers, who love nothing more than a unique challenge to solve. And then there are the wacky deckbuilders, who don’t mind losing 99 games if the one they do win involves an infinite damage combo.
Which one you like the best, of course, is a matter of personal taste. But that does not mean there are no standout performers. Some streamers simply draw bigger audiences than others. Some have even managed to build fanatical, cult-like followings. These are the types of streamers who spawn memes that extend way beyond their own chats, leaking out of Twitch and into the wider Hearthstone community.
In short, some streamers are just more entertaining than others. In this article, I’ll be drawing attention to six of the best. So let’s get into it. Starting off the list, we have…
Kripp is one of the Hearthstone OGs, carving out a reputation as an arena god extremely early on in Hearthstone’s history. Which makes it all the more impressive he’s kept it up this long, especially with the brutal streaming schedule he keeps – five hours a day, usually.
An Arena specialist through and through, Kripp was the one who came out on top in Blizzard’s first ever Arena leaderboard. Kripp fans love him for more than just his skill, though. He probably has the driest sense of humour of any Hearthstone streamer, often emerging from long periods of silence to come out with something incredibly funny. He also has some of the best facial expressions in the game, as this clip demonstrates.
Kibler came into Hearthstone with considerable pedigree. He made his name in Magic: The Gathering, sitting in that game’s Hall of Fame as one of the most successful players of all time. Now he plays Hearthstone, and he’s pretty darn good at it.
Perhaps as a result of his ultra-competitive M:TG past, Kibler likes to keep things fun on his stream. Never one to pick the dominant deck and pilot it to high Legend ranks, he instead prefers to experiment with off-the-wall deck ideas, some more serious than others. This means that when you tune into Kibler’s stream, you’re never really sure what he’s going to be playing.
And then there’s the laugh. Oh god, the laugh.
Disguised Toast is all about the memes, and he makes no apologies for that. That shouldn’t be much of a surprise. After all, his name is a deliberate mishearing of the SI:7 Agent’s summon sound (“this guy’s toast!”), which is about as memetacular as it gets.
This is a stream on which you’ll some pretty wild decks. Toast will gladly build a deck with an absurd, near-unachievable win condition, and play that deck for hours until it comes off just once. This tendency is in evidence in the titles of some of his previous streams: “The Worst Decks Only”, “Longest Yogg” and “Meme Decks With 5% Success Rates” stand out as particular highlights.
Come for the memes; stay for… more memes.
When we talk about Amaz we should also talk about Priest. That’s because Jason “Amaz” Chan’s dedication to his beloved Anduin is possibly the greatest romance in the history of Hearthstone. Amaz played Priest from the start, and stuck with it through the long periods it was the worst in the game, little more than a punchline to Hearthstone’s many cruel jokes. If that isn’t dedication, I don’t know what is.
Amaz is as exuberant as they come, with energy levels unrivalled by pretty much anyone else on Twitch. Not a chill streamer, then. But an entertaining one.
In terms of competitive pedigree amongst Hearthstone streamers, it’s hard to see past Thijs. A legend of the pro scene, he’s pocketed over $140k over the course of his career. The defining characteristic of Thijs as a pro was his versatility; the Dutchman was equally comfortable with aggro, midrange and control decks.
Nowadays Thijs competes less and streams more, but his mastery is still clear to see. What also stands out is his attitude: there are few more cheerful and positive streamers than Thijs, even in the face of bad beats. Which makes sense: after all, when you’ve been in as many high pressure situations as he has, losing a ladder game to RNG probably doesn’t seem like so much of a big deal.
David ‘Dog’ Caero is another streamer on this list who’s made big waves in the pro scene, but now favours the far more lucrative and stable career of streaming. Dog’s particular speciality has always been innovating meta-breaking decks, a skill which he often demonstrates live on stream. For example, a few years ago Dog’s name was synonymous with Ramp Druid, an archetype that he doggedly (pun intended, no apologies) refined and, on many occasions, climbed to the upper reaches of Legend with.
He’s also the subject of one of Twitch’s most bizarre and weirdly enduring memes. This would be the one where Dog’s chat frequently begs him to take his shirt off. I… I don’t know. That’s just a meme for some reason.