The UConn Hearthstomp was an amazing success!
Thanks to the generosity of TeSPA and Blizzard, and all of the members and officers of the UConn Gaming Club, the UConn Hearthstomp was an amazing night of food, friends and Frostwolves!
After the strict rules that UConn enforced for Spring Weekend prevented most non-students from attending, and the rainstorms forced us away from the amphitheater into a rather small classroom, the outlook for the Hearthstomp was looking a bit grim. However, thanks to the dedication of a few group officers, the publicity we received from our posts on LiquidHearth and the Hearthstone website, and the allure of friends, food, card-backs and prizes, we managed to bring over 50 total attendees to our hearth, with a peak concurrent attendance of 42 people!
It took quite a bit of work to transform the stark ITE classroom into a homey hearth. The day before, we went on a shopping spree and took over an Honors Dorm kitchen to bake the night away. With our combined genius, we transformed portions of cookie sticks, cupcakes, frosting and candy into beautiful & delicious Shaman totems, with different colors and designs for each of the 4 basic types. We also transformed a sheet of brownies into an awesome hearthstone card-back! Due to artistic limitations, we stuck with the basic back – the Fireside-exclusive back is a little too elaborate and awesome for us to replicate. You can find close-ups of each totem type scattered throughout this re-cap!
The next day, we set about transforming the classroom into a suitable Gathering environment. The lights were dimmed, the totems stood sweet watch over the pizza and the prizes, and the Hearthstone soundtrack played quietly in the background as a 1080p fireplace crackled on the projector screen. We replaced the equations on the whiteboard with battletags and a bad Leeroy drawing — stick-figure Whelps are a lot harder to draw than you might think. At 5:45, people gradually started to filter in.
At 6:00, the room was already nearly full. A couple attendees were setting up their PC’s, and some of our more mobile members were downloading Hearthstone on their iPads. People lined up for pizza and cupcakes, filling the air with the excited buzz that only good food and company can bring.
At 6:30, after a few last-minute bracket additions, the great tournament began. Contestants exchanged battletags and started their games. Friendly taunts and yelps of despair occasionally pierced the buzz of conversation, including a thunderous “WOMBO COMBOOO” as a Hunter player drew two Unleash the Hounds in a single turn and bombarded a Priest with frothing pitbulls.
As Taylor’s Hunter deck claimed Tim’s Druid to conclude an epic, hour-long series (group R on the challonge bracket shown below), we progressed to the semi-finals. Taylor’s Rogue deck secured him a clean 2-0 against Kyle, and Billy’s Mage just barely scraped past Regi’s Hunter. In the finals, some lucky Doomhammer-Rockbiter draws and Stoneclaw totem drops saved Billy from the wrath of a Cold-Blooded Gadgetzan and secured him the grand prize. After we divvied up the prizes, the finalists and the eager bystanders posed for a final picture.