Midgame Week: When the Plan Falls Apart
The week is winding to a close, which means this fourth instalment of Midgame Moves is nearly the final one! Previously, we’ve checked for lethal; in its absence, looked to stay alive; and tracked what’s in our opponent’s hand along the way. Today, one of the most common problems you’ll encounter is on the table: what’s the play when your original game plan has fallen apart?
You had a grand plan. It was perfect. A flawless combination all but set up, waiting for that last crucial card—and then you realize that your opponent will win, unless you expend one of your key cards to stay in the game. Fear not! All is not necessarily lost, and Esteban “AKAWonder” Serrano of SK Gaming—a fixture of the European pro Hearthstone scene—will help you understand how to navigate what’s left when your deck’s win condition is scattered to the wind.
Regardless of your deck style, AKAWonder says you must look for a new strategy if your original one has been derailed. “When you lose your win condition, you need to find an alternative plan to win the game," he says. "Most likely, your chances to win are lower than they were.” But so long as they aren't zero, you have a chance. He suggests looking for every point of win percentage you can, by any means possible.
“In order to find an alternative plan, I think about different situations—denying my opponent their win condition, going to fatigue, or just creating pressure using minions,” AKAWonder says. He adds that certain cards can offer new outs all their own, like The Lich King.
It’s not always easy, but practice helps. He says, “You need to find a new way to win—and the more you play a deck, the more alternative game plans you will discover for different matchups.” If you’re newer to Hearthstone, he says this is actually a valuable lesson to learn: “Your win condition is important, but not if you lose with it in your hand. Go for an alternative plan if the situation forces you to!”
Sounds like AKAWonder recommends a whole string of keywords: you need to Discover new ways to play and Adapt to the situation! Every game is different, so playing with that in mind just makes sense.
We’ll add on to AKAWonder’s recommendation tomorrow with a final critical midgame skill—playing to your outs. While staying alive and fighting through when your game plan has been torpedoed are important, you can’t lose sight of the objective: you still need a way to win when the dust settles. Join us tomorrow for the conclusion of Midgame Week!