How to record your HearthStone game [PC, Mac, Android]

HearthStone doesn’t have any built-in replay capability yet, and so the only way to share your game and get advice used to be to record and upload it to a video website like YouTube.

It’s now possible to recreate the game in the browser thanks to the logs provided by HearthStone itself: all the needed information is recorded, and viewers like Zero to Heroes let you replay the game. The unique aspect of Zero to Heroes is the focus on the game review: to help you spot your mistakes, learn from them and improve at the game.

Recording and uploading a game is thus now surprisingly simple:

On PC

It’s now possible (and recommended) to record and upload your game without the need of video recording (see here to see a full game). Compared to a full video, the file is so small it is uploaded in a few seconds, and you can interact with the replay (easily move forward / back in the turn, mouse over the cards, and so on). Also, once you have everything setup, all your games will be automatically recorded – no need to fire up a video recording software beforehand.

You have two programs that let you do that today

Hearthstone Deck Tracker

  1. Download and install Hearthstone Deck Tracker (and optionally download Arena Helper if you want to record your Arena drafts). It’s a free software that will add an overlay on top of the Hearthstone window to track stats during the game. Please see the FAQ if you want to know everything HDT can bring to your game.
  2. You can then either download the Zero to Heroes HDT plugin or upload your files manually (continue reading to know how)
  3. Launch HDT. You can also launch Hearthstone directly from HDT if you like.
  4. Play a game – it will be recorded automatically.
    1. If you use the Zero to Heroes plugin, the game is uploaded automatically to your Zero to Heroes account, and you can stop here
    2. If not, the game is automatically uploaded to hsreplay.net. This is fine if you just intend to watch the game, but if you’d like to analyze the plays and discuss your choices with others, you’ll probably want to import it to Zero to Heroes (see the Import from External site section below)
    3. Otherwise, the recorded game will be a .hdtreplay file in C:\Users\<user_name>\AppData\Roaming\HearthstoneDeckTracker\Replays. Note: the AppData folder is hidden. If you can’t see it, just manually type \AppData after your current path in the Windows Explorer bar
  5. You can then upload it online to discuss your plays with other players. Zero to Heroes already lets you do that:
      1. Go to http://www.zerotoheroes.com/s/hearthstone and click on Upload
      2. Select Game Replay, and choose your file (or drop it in the zone)
      3. You can then review your game and add comments if you want to.

Overwolf

Overwolf is a multi-game application that has Hearthstone support. Once you complete your Hearthstone session, you’ll have the possibilities to see the replays of all the games you’ve played during this session.

While we’re working on making sharing as easy as clicking a button, you can already upload your games quite easily to Zero to Heroes. To do so:

  • Go to %localappdata%/Overwolf/ZeroToHeroes/Replays (you can just paste that in the Windows Exporer address bar). You’ll find all your game replays there
  • Then go to the Zero to Heroes upload page: http://www.zerotoheroes.com/s/hearthstone/upload/replay
  • From here, you can drag and drop the game you want to share.

Arena Tracker

  1. Download and install Arena Tracker. It’s a free software that will add an overlay on top of the Hearthstone window to track your games or provide advice on your arena drafts. The site itself provides all the installation instructions you need.
    1. Note: you won’t be able to easily have Arena Tracker and Hearthstone Deck Tracker installed at the same time, so choose the one you like best 🙂
  2. Launch Arena Tracker. The first time you’ll be asked for some information.
    1. Play a game – it will be recorded automatically. The recorded game will be a .arenatracker file in the HS Cards/GameLog folder of your Arena Tracker directory
  3. The upload procedure is the same as described above – except that you have to select the .arenatracker file instead 🙂

ArenaDrafts

ArenaDrafts.com automatically records, well, your arena drafts. They have tons of cool features (like sharing live the current pick/draft to get real-time discussions), and have a detailed guide on how to upload the draft to Zero to Heroes.

Import a game from an external site

You can also import games or drafts from some external sites (HearthArena, ArenaDrafts and HSReplay are the most popular today). To do so:

  • Go to Upload > External site
  • Paste the URL of the site you wish to import from
  • Et voilà!

capture

Game logs

It is now possible to simply take your game log file and upload it online:

  1. Enable logging
  2. The log file is then located at <your_hearthstone_installation_folder>/Logs/Power.log or Power_old.log
  3. Important: the file is erased when you restart HearthStone, so take care to upload your games before relaunching the game
  4. The upload works as described for the previous section of the guide. The exception being that, since you will most likely be uploading several games at once, the upload screen will look like this:
  5. Once the upload completes, the Title, Player and Opponent names and classes will be automatically prefilled – you just need to add the info for the game level.
  6. By default all games are uploaded as “private” (only you can access them), and you can change the visibility either on this screen or later on for each individual game

On Mac

  • Arena Tracker now allows Mac users to record and upload your games! The installation procedure is the same as in the above section and described on the official site.
  • You can also upload your game logs, as described in the section above

Since patch 7.1, logs aren’t available on Android anymore, so for now we don’t have a good solution to record and upload games.

On Android (tablet and phone)

Log files

The easiest way to replay your games. There are two steps to this:

  1. First time only: Enable logging as described on this reddit post. The content of the newly created log.config should be this:

    [Achievements]
    LogLevel=1
    FilePrinting=true
    ConsolePrinting=true
    ScreenPrinting=false

    [Power]
    LogLevel=1
    FilePrinting=true
    ConsolePrinting=true
    ScreenPrinting=false

  2. Play HS normally. Your games will be logged in the Power.log file from your hearthstone Log folder (exact installation path depends on the file explorer you’re using, but it’s always something like Android/data/com.blizzard.wtcg.hearthstone/files/Logs)
  3. Important: the file is erased when you restart HearthStone, so be sure to upload your games before relaunching the game
  4. You can then upload your logs as described in the above section of the guide.

Decision Making in HearthStone, analysing puzzles #2

Welcome back to this series where I create manually HearthStone puzzles to highlight some of the important concepts of the game.

Solutions of last week puzzle #1

Last week, I left you with a puzzle “Find the lethal” as Mage vs Paladin.

HS puzzle lethal mage
HS puzzle: find the lethal as Mage*

On your board: [Dalaran Aspirant] with 0 stack of spell damage, [Novice Engineer], [Mana Wyrm] not yet buffed, [Illuminator].

On the opponent board: [Twilight Guardian] with his battlecry buff and [Chromaggus].

In your hand: [Dragon’s Breath], [Blizzard] and [Ice Lance].

And it was actually too simple. Indeed there are two solutions: one basic one and one puzzle-like. When building the puzzle, I had in mind the difficult solution and didn’t see the obvious one…

Simple solution:

  1. Blizzard + Ice Lance on the Guardian which dies. Mana Wyrm gets 3/3. Dragon’s Breath costs 4. (3 mana left)
  2. Attack with Novice Engineer the Chromaggus. Dragon’s Breath costs 3.
  3. Dragon’s Breath the paladin. -4. Mana Wyrm gets 4/3.
  4. Attack with remaining minions. -3 -4 -2 = -9 for a total of -13.

As this was not really what I intended, I present you the updated puzzle.

Puzzle Mage v1.1

puzzle 1 mage bis
HS puzzle: find the lethal as mage v1.1*

On your board: same as above.

On the opponent board: [Sen’jin Shieldmasta] and [Boulderfist Ogre] which is frozen.

In your hand: [Dragon’s Breath], [Arcane Explosion] and [Ice Lance].

So you had another Ice Lance and easy lethal but your younger brother played it against the ogre.

Solution of puzzle v1.1

  1. Hero power on the Illuminator. Dalaran Aspirant gets one stack of spell damage. (4 mana left)
  2. Arcane explosion, 1+1 damage on every opponent minions . Mana Wyrm gets 2/3. (2 mana left)
  3. Ice lance on the Ogre which dies. Mana Wyrm gets 3/3. Dragon’s Breath costs now 4. (1 mana left)
  4. Attack with the Novice Engineer and the Illuminator the Sen’jin Shieldmasta, all three die. Dragon’s Breath costs now 1.
  5. Dragon’s Breath face. -5. Mana Wyrm gets 4/3.
  6. Attack with Dalaran Aspirant -3 and Mana Wyrm -4.

What’s interesting here is the use of the hero power against our own minion so that enough minions die and Dragon’s Breath is playable. Secondly the Ice Lance to kill Ogre has the only effect to buff the Mana Wyrm without impacting the mana for Dragon’s Breath. Finally the spell damage is a powerful ability which sometimes is forgotten. Here it is useful (and necessary) on the three spells!

Takeaways:

  • Even if we don’t usually want to ping our own minions, this possibility exists and should be considered. Freeze Mage decks use it with [Acolyte of Pain]. It’s also used with [Sylvanas Windrunner].
  • Mana Wyrm is a simple minion for 1 mana but can quickly be an issue if not dealt with. The combo is usually played with the coin and [Mirror Image] on turn 1.
  • Spell damage is not to be underestimated. Say hello to [Malygos].

Puzzle #2

puzzle warrior clear the board
HS Puzzle as Warrior vs Hunter, clear the board

Let’s have a look at a new puzzle now, it’s a Warrior one.

On your board: [Shieldmaiden] + [Death’s Bite] equipped.

On the opponent board: [Webspinner], [Ram Wrangler] which summoned a [Savannah Highmane] buffed by the [Houndmaster].

In your hand: [Whirlwind], [Fiery War Axe], [Unstable Ghoul], [Charge] and [Bloodsail Raider]

It’s not about finishing the Hunter (he has 12 Health Points [HP]) as it’s actually impossible this turn. This puzzle is about finding the best play to take the least possible risk for the next turn. You have only 2 HP and 5 armor. So the idea is to clear the board. You could want to put Charge on your Bloodsail Raider to kill the Savannah Highmane, put the Unstable Ghoul as defense and go face with the ShieldMaiden and Death’s Bite to put the Hunter at 3 HP and ensure a victory if you survive next turn. There is also another solution which puts the hunter at 1 HP. That’s the thing though. How much damage can the hunter do in one turn with minions on the board? A lot. It depends of course of how many cards he has in hand. The possible plays are really open to discussion here.

Solution in the next episode!

*Puzzles are created using http://www.hsdeck.com/puzzle/. Very nice site for creating puzzles. Too bad they are not dynamic enough to allow the users to test the puzzles.

Decision making in HearthStone, analysing puzzles, #1

HearthStone is really fun to play. Even more when you manage to pull out a combo. There are classic combos like playing [Force of Nature] with [Savage Roar] with the druid for 14 damages (3*(2+2) +2) a turn for 9 mana. This is simple though and takes no consideration of the board and the different minion abilities.

Other types of combos can happen, just optimizing the synergy between your cards, your board and the opponent board. When they are not so easy to detect, they are called puzzles.

The most funny ones are probably to find the lethal play: being able to finish your opponent without him being able to counter it. I invite you to check out Amaz puzzles serie on youtube or the youtube channel Animated HearthStone Puzzles While some puzzles are more likely to happen with some classes like Priest, it can happen with any class. I’ll try to create manually a puzzle for each class with my knowledge of the game and make it educative. The goal is not to make it the most difficult to spot by counting too much but to highlight one or two interesting concepts of HearthStone that can help you win games.

Here’s the first one as a Mage (edit: there are actually two solutions for this puzzle, one is quite easy and the other one intended for the puzzle :/ sorry!)

HS puzzle lethal mage
HS puzzle: find the lethal as Mage*

On your board: [Dalaran Aspirant] with 0 stack of spell damage, [Novice Engineer], [Mana Wyrm] not yet buffed, [Illuminator].

On the opponent board: [Twilight Guardian] with his battlecry buff and [Chromaggus].

In your hand: [Dragon’s Breath], [Blizzard] and [Ice Lance].

It could be tempting in this configuration to use Blizzard, clear the Twilight Guardian, go face and wait next turn to end the game. But then you’re exposed to counter-plays by the paladin who could even win depending on his hand and his draw. If you hadn’t been told there was a lethal play here, would you have found it?

Solution in the next episode!

*Puzzles are created using http://www.hsdeck.com/puzzle/. Very nice site for creating puzzles. Too bad they are not dynamic enough to allow the users to test the puzzles.

 

 

 

Being passionate about sport, a way to improve together

Sport feels good right? Whatever your physical condition or the weather, everytime it feels so good. Tennis, running, volley-ball, any sport, it’s all the same. You don’t think about work anymore. You stop worrying. You just enjoy the activity, the exhaustion of your body. It clears your mind. And there is more to it. The intelligence of the sport. The pleasure of competing with your friends. The individual goal to progress. This is a passion we all have and would not give up easily. Almost like a drug.

When I met Seb, I was strucked by his passion about squash. He would go to the courts, three, four times a week. I have had the opportunity to play with him once. He gave me some advice about my position and how I should strike the ball. Indeed my technique was kind of nonexistant, I was just running a lot, playing crazy balls and having fun. But I was looking to get better. And he was enjoying giving the advice. Advice he had learned from coaches and friends and he was teaching me then.

His idea of building Zero to Heroes came after two years of playing squash intensively. This was not enough for him. Despite the weekly coaching trainings, he was desperate to improve and know what he was doing wrong during competitions. So he thought about a way to solve his problem: the video analysis.

Have you tried to record yourself playing and watch the video afterwards? Feels pretty awful right? Watching our own mistakes. How can we play so badly while we thought it was ok? Despite the awkward feeling, it happens to be very useful to watch ourselves play. And if a better player can review the video and specifically highlight a wrong move and show the proper one, then it’s gold.
While it’s not new to share a video to get relevant advice on how you play, there is no dedicated place for it today. There are sports forums indeed with the proper audience but no video integration. Videos will be uploaded on youtube which however does not contain enough tools for an efficient analysis system.

Zero to Heroes was born.

My passion is real-time strategy video games. It’s not the same as running on a squash court for sure. But it feels as good. I get the same excitement as competing with friends or even strangers, and I strive to get better and climb the ranks. And when I’m learning some knowledge about the games, I love to share it with others.

So we realized that Zero to Heroes could be the place for squash, but also for League of Legends, then in theory for any (e-)sport you could get a personalized feedback on.

Learn new things and help others, that’s what we’re trying to achieve everyday.

Welcome!