An unknown UK player only known as ‘Unknown’ reached the quarter-finals in an unknown meta: Trio of UK Hearthstone players finish top 8 at Masters Tour 2022 Onyxia’s Lair hours after new mini-set launches

hearthstone masters tour onyxias lair

Three UK Hearthstone players reached top 8 in the Masters Tour 2022 Onyxia’s Lair on the weekend, including an Unknown player (a lesser-known player with a name that’s literally ‘Unknown’).

UK players Unknown and DeadDraw – who plays for Team Liquid and had the highest win-rate last year – faced one another in the quarter finals. DeadDraw winning 3-1 to progress to the semi-finals.

There, he fell 3-2 to another UK player, Judgement, who progressed to the grand final, only to suffer defeat to Chinese player LoveStorm 3-1.

The Unknown UK player (aka Freddie Nash) celebrated top eight with his very first tweet. He’s so Unknown, he still has an unknown Twitter profile picture and banner after making his profile in January 2022:

unknown uk hearthstone play

To add to the UK’s strong presence at the tournament, three of the five casters at the event were from the UK: Darroch Brown, Neil ‘L0rinda’ Bond and Alexander ‘Raven’ Baguley.

It was both an achievement for the UK but also a slight disappointment. All three players in the playoffs were on the right side of the bracket, meaning only one of them could make the grand final.

However, with the Hearthstone 2022 esports changes, the new format based on match wins and a rise in player spots at the World Championship (from eight to 16), this means that the UK has a solid chance of qualifying for it and having a strong year as a region.

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“Normally, between all the casters, we have enough player knowledge that one of us will know a player in the tournament. But nope, none of us knew Unknown. We thought, he’s from the UK? And we don’t know him? It was embarrassing considering four of the six Hearthstone Grandmasters casters are from the UK!”

Raven

“The fact that we’ve had three UK players making it to top eight in the first Masters Tour, means if they just do alright in the future then maybe even two of them can make it to the Summer Championship, and the top four from that will go straight to Worlds,” UK caster Raven told Esports News UK.

“So the UK has got off to a great start in 2022, especially when three made the top eight out of 376 players who qualified.”

Meta madness: Players had barely any time to practice with new cards ahead of Hearthstone Masters Tour 2022 Onyxia’s Lair

On top of all this Unknown/UK business, this Hearthstone Masters Tour was using the Onyxia’s Lair mini-set, which launched on February 15th 2022. This didn’t give much time for players to practice with the new cards, as no one had early access.

We caught up with UK caster Raven to make sense of the madness.

“This Masters Tour was kind of insane, honestly,” Raven said. “The mini-set came out a day before deck submission for the Masters Tour, and the meta was all over the show.

“It’s massively changed the meta, which is nice – you don’t want to see cards come out that don’t do anything.

“So this put an extra level of pressure on the players, because they had to build brand new decks in a tough tournament format. And everyone had access to the mini-set at the same time.”

Hearthstone 2022 Masters Tour Onyxia’s Lair VoD

Tough times for UK Hearthstone players

Because the tournament was running on Asia-Pacific time, this meant the three UK players played all night.

“The tournament started at 11pm and ended at 8am GMT each day,” Raven added.

“The three UK players played all night for three nights, and they still managed it. I was struggling to stay awake while casting due to the reverse hours!

“So with the low amount of prep time, and having to play on a terrible schedule, it’s really impressive that three UK players made the top eight.”

Hearthstone Grandmasters 2022 kicks off this weekend

hearthstone grandmasters

The first season of Grandmasters begins this Friday (February 25th 2022) from 2pm GMT on the Hearthstone Esports YouTube channel.

This is going to be the final regular season of Grandmasters to see 48 of the top players from Americas, Asia-Pacific and Europe battling to be the best in their respective regions and advance to the 2022 World Championship.

This season features three individual weekend tournaments, with players earning points to advance to the playoffs. Competing across Conquest, Last Hero Standing, and the new Trio format, players are fighting for their share of the season’s $250,000 prize pool and regional invites to the 2022 World Championship.

Related content: Interview with UK Hearthstone caster and ‘UK’s Best Gamer’ Raven

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