Here’s our guide on the Best Hero to pick at the start of your Hearthstone Battlegrounds journey.
Hearthstone’s Battlegrounds game mode allows players to fight it out auto-chess style. You’ll have the choice between either 3 or 4 Heroes depending on your bonuses.
Which Hero do you choose though? Obviously, you won’t be able to take your pick of all of them, but we’ve put together a helpful guide to the very best options, so if they come up it’s well worth grabbing a top tier. Since the mode has been available for a fair while, we've got more of an idea of what works best, so keep an eye out for .
Hearthstone Battlegrounds: Best Heroes Tier List
We’ll keep this list updated based on our experiences, as well as the developing meta around the Battlegrounds, so keep an eye out for our updates!
Top Tier Heroes
Here’s our very favourite Hearthstone Battlegrounds Heroes. We pick them whenever the option arises, as the effects they bring from their Hero Powers create so much value.
Galakrond’s Hero Power - Galakrond’s Greed - lets you replace a minion with one from a higher Tavern Tier for 0 gold. It can stack too - if you freeze the tavern you can keep upgrading a minion until you buy something from a far higher tier than you should be getting. This can get you some real snowball turns early on and help you boost your power level big time if you play it right.
Ragnaros the Firelord
Ragnaros’ Hero Power doesn’t kick in for a few rounds, but once it does, Sulfuras buffs your left- and right-most minions every turn by +3/+3 for free, making it extremely powerful in the late game with any build. Getting this buff on something like Zapp Slywick or Cave Hydra can be the big play you need to secure those late wins. You’ll probably be dealing big damage to your enemies too, as your high-level minions will survive late on.
For just 1 coin, Lord Jaraxxus boosts your Demons by +1/+1. Since being cheapened to 1 mana, this has become a hugely powerful ability, aside from the fact that you’re basically locked into Demons as a playstyle. If that suits you though, pick up Jaraxxus!
This Hero has a Passive power. It gives every third minion you buy +2/+2. This is ludicrously strong, especially if you plan ahead a bit. Minions that are hard to buff, such as Soul Juggler, as well as buff cards like Replicating Menace make for great targets for this ability. It'll give you a lot of easy wins early on, letting you keep the momentum up throughout the game.
This Hero’s power discounts your first Tavern Refresh each turn to 0. Not a particularly spicy effect, but with it you’ll be able to fit a surprising amount into your turns. Even from round 1, you can re-roll the Tavern when no one else is able to, and still purchase a minion. Basically, Nozdormu has a whole load more flexibility than his rivals, which is pretty easy to use at all times. Most Hero Powers don't start benefiting the player until later, but Nozdormu gets you off to a flying start.
Dancin’ Deryl is one of the tougher Heroes to play. Each time you sell a minion, two minions in the Tavern are given +1/+1. You’ll need to be careful when selling minions back to the Tavern, as each time you do so, you won’t want . It therefore takes a lot more planning ahead to get this guy right, but if you do, there’s the chance to highroll into some ridiculously powerful team compositions. Early on, getting minions like Alleycat and Murloc Tidehunter is great, as you can sell them back for extra bonuses and stat boosts. He’s not easy to get right though, so don’t be surprised if you crash out early without a bit of practice.
Yogg-Saron, Hope’s End
Yogg-Saron’s Hero Power, Puzzle Box, hires a random minion from the Tavern and gives it +1/+1. It costs 2 coins, which is less than you’d usually be paying for a minion, and the bonus gives you a substantial advantage early on in the game. You'll have a stacked board to build off of, and even though you don't get to choose the minion hired with your Hero Power, you'll be in good stead to work out a build later on in the game.
With this guy’s passive Hero Power, all minions, including the enemy’s, have +3 attack at all times. You don’t have to activate it or anything, it’s just always in action. He goes really well with Beasts, since the likes of Rat Pack and Infested Wolf's summoned tokens will always have significant levels of attack. You can pretty reliably get it to work in your favour too - just have more minions on board than your enemies. Divine Shields are great too.
Arch-Villain Rafaam’s ability allows him to pick up some very useful minions and at little cost to your bank account too. For 1 gold, you can add a plain copy of the first minion you kill to your hand, meaning you’ll pick up a 3 gold minion at the end of the turn. This makes it fantastic in the early game as you can build up your board quickly, and enables you to pivot to a different strategy quickly if Bob’s not giving you what you need. Also, if you don’t need the plain copy, you can stick it on the board (if you’ve got space), and then refund it for that 1 gold back - especially useful if you need an extra reroll or two!
The Lich King
Whilst the prospect of giving a golden Sneed’s Old Shredder Reborn is an enticing one, The Lich King’s Hero Power is often pretty pointless. For 0 coins, you can give any minion Reborn, but given that a lot of compositions are based on beefing up minions, these buffs aren’t possible to hold onto when the minion comes back from the dead. That huge Murloc Tidecaller you’ve been powering up this whole match? It’s getting resurrected with 1 attack, sorry. The fact that this power is free means you can reliably get this Reborn ability on the minion of your choice, making it real strong.
Edwin VanCleef’s provides a pretty powerful buff for a cheap price. The more minions you buy in a round, the better the buff, and the fact it’s a targeted ability means you can prioritise your key fighters. We’ve found it especially useful for keeping squishy, yet powerful minions alive like Khadgar, Soul Juggler and the like.
Maiev lets you give a minion in Bob's Tavern Dormant before buffing it by +1/+1 after 2 turns and putting it in your hand. It’s not the most eyecatching power, but getting a minion for just 1 Gold remains pretty powerful, and eventually you’ll just have a solid stream of buffed boys rocking up to party.
Tirion's ability, "Honorable Warband", costs 1 and gives minions with no minion type +1/+1. It doesn’t sound that great, but it really adds up throughout the course of a game. You’ll be able to buff minions who don’t usually receive buffs, such as Soul Juggler and Pack Leader. These minions are often easy to kill off early in a round, but stack on a few buffs and they’ll begin sticking around more often.
We’ve come up against completely unkillable enemy Tirions, as this Hero Power is amazing throughout the entire game. You’re not even forced into a specific type of team composition - Tirion is extremely versatile in all situations.
Her nerf has been reversed! This gives her hero power insane value. For only 1 coin (previously 2), she refreshes Bob's Tavern, with one minion guaranteed to be a level above the current Tavern level. This means she can cheat out more expensive minions earlier than anyone else, which makes it far easier to get those wins in the early game without investing an entire turn to a Tavern upgrade. Once you're at level 3 and 4, the 1 coin cost is an easy spend for the powerful minion, or synergy buff you're going for.
The Hero Power you’ll be working with here is a pretty damn powerful one. When you get to Tavern Tier 5, you’ll be given the opportunity to Discover 2 Dragons. Razorgore, the Untamed or Kalecgos, Arcane Aspect are often offered in these buckets, giving you a huge injection of tempo, especially if you rush yourself to tier 5. All buys you’ve wasted by ranking up can now be regained. You can now also get higher-tier minions, so late-game Alexstrasza absolutely smashes it.
Brann is a Hero who can benefit far more from Battlecry synergies. When you play a Battlecry minion, a random minion on your side of the board gets +1/+1. He essentially gives you an extra +1/+1 Battlecry with every other Battlecry you play. Even non-synergistic Battlecries give you a bonus, making most buys worth the spend. With the likes of Alleycat early on, you’ll get an extra +1/+1, and even the likes of Houndmaster later on will give a random minion a bonus. Across the course of a game, this snowballs impressively, and we’ve found a lot of success with how surprisingly versatile Brann is.
George the Fallen
George the Fallen has the ability to give any minion Divine Shield. Divine Shield is absolutely nuts. You can feasibly get very powerful pretty quickly, giving you a free hit on an enemy regardless of their attack power or Poisonous ability. With this ability now costing just 2 mana, your enemy will have a LOT of Divine Shields to deal with.
High Tier Heroes
These Heroes are almost the best of the best. Their abilities are consistently powerful and give you a decent chance every time you load a game up. They aren’t always as overpowered as the Heroes above, but you can rely on them to always be useful.
Sir Finley Mrrgglton
Sir Finley can't really be ranked like most other heroes. He's basically a re-roll for when you don't like your three Hero choices. His passive hero power, Adventure!, lets you Discover a hero power at the start of the game. Basically, he has to go mid-tier, because there's just as much chance you highroll as lowroll. Obviously though, look over this tier list for tips on which Hero Powers you should pick!
The Great Akazamzarak*
This guy’s Hero Power costs 2 coins to use, and allows you to Discover a Secret and put it into play. The Secret pool is actually quite small, so you’ll be able to tailor your choice depending on your board’s situation. Need a few extra minions on board early? Grab yourself a Snake Trap. Enemy minions getting too big? Venomstrike Trap can help take one down with Poisonous. The Great Akazamzarak is not tied down to a specific team composition too, which means you can play to whichever style you deem best for the minions you’re being offered from the Tavern. Remember: your Secrets remain in play if they aren't triggered, meaning you'll be able to grab an Ice Block and save yourself from lethal damage at least once.
Akazamzarak's Hero Power scales surprisingly well throughout a game too - Autodefense Matrix and Splitting Image in particular work great late on. Play smart and he could take you places.
This guy's got a pretty unique passive hero ability. It makes everything cost 2 gold, so this means Minions and shop refreshes. You still start with 3 gold though. At first glance it may seem very strong, and it is - just stay on tempo and keep buying minions.
Make sure you have as a strong board as early as possible, and prioritise minions which'll help you do so. Also, don't forget that each shop refresh costs 2 gold, not 1! Buy, buy, buy. Only refresh if you're desperate - you can always flog your minions back to Bob for 1 gold. Since his nerf though, Tavern Tiers cost 1 more coin to gain, meaning you'll be on a slightly slower upgrade curve for the whole game. This has unfortunately put a dampener on his ludicrous momentum throughout the game, but the cheap minions do still make Millhouse a decent choice.
This nasty gnome hits a very specific synergy. All mechs you buy from Bartender Bob receive a +1 Attack buff. This really adds up, and sets you down a clear path for how you want to build your team. Obviously, buy all the Mech minions you possibly can and beef them up using the various Battlecries and buffs available to you. Magnetic buffs are especially powerful here, and you can build yourself a pretty sweet board of minions with Divine Shield, Taunt and all sorts of other effects.
The aspect of the blue dragonflight has an effect similar to that of Galakrond. However, this one costs 0 and replaces a minion with one of the same Tavern Tier. It’s harder to use, because you’ve got to know which tier you’re looking for, but you can plan ahead to maximise your chances of finding the perfect minion to complete your warband.
The Rat King has 4 Hero Powers that swap each turn. Each time you buy a Beast, Mech, Murloc or Demon, they’re buffed by +1/+1. Pretty solid, but you’ve got to ride the wave of fortune with this one. You do have the opportunity to snowball completely out of control, but you’re simultaneously running the risk of getting none of the matching synergies you’re after when you need them in the Tavern phase.
This guy lets you start a game with a 1/1 Amalgam that has all minion types, similar to the Nightmare Amalgam. This lets you start buffing it up as early as you want, Rockpool Hunter offers +1/+1 in stats to your Amalgam, whilst Magnetic minions can be attached onto it. It’s the perfect opener and leaves you able to go down any composition route you see fit. It’s extremely strong later on once you start getting Lightfang Enforcers in your team too.
Nefarian’s Hero Power, Nefarious Wind, deals 1 damage to all enemy minions at the start of combat. This may sound minor, but keep in mind that Divine Shield is hugely powerful in Battlegrounds, negating potentially enormous blows from buffed up enemy minions. Nafarian’s blanket 1 damage to all enemies, for the tiny cost of 1 coin, gets rid of all Divine Shields, so you won’t have to worry about a thing.
Giantfin is ridiculously powerful, especially when you’re going for a Murloc team comp. For 1 coin, his Hero Power gives all your minions the Deathrattle: Summon a 1/1 Murloc. With Murloc buffs like Murloc Warleader, this Hero Power is extremely strong, and your Murloc Tidecallers get beefed up during the combat phase too.
Sindragosa is unfortunately lacking in utility. Her passive Hero Power gives minions you’ve Frozen in Bob’s Tavern +1/+1. This is surprisingly strong in the early game, as you can stack up freezes and rely on those early buffs for a couple rounds. Of course, you don't want to be freezing the Tavern all the time, but it's also pretty great if you do have to. You're usually freezing for minions you want anyway, so the bonus is always welcome.
Nothing fancy here. Patchwerk starts with a beefy 50 health. This means you can take some early losses while you search for the perfect team composition without worrying too much, and even if you don’t need that, you can take some huge late-game hits without dying in one. Patchwerk is universally strong, and well worth playing a game or two with.
Losing out on your first two turns is pretty nasty, and you’ll be guaranteed a decent bit of damage to hit you. However, if the tier 3 minions you Discover synergise together, you’re onto a winner. For example, picking up Imp Gang Boss and Soul Juggler, you can snowball out of control and start pressuring your opponents’ health totals before they’re upgraded enough to respond. It takes a bit of luck, but even if you don’t get the perfect lineup, A.F. Kay can bring you a ludicrously strong early game, which can snowball ridiculously.
Mid Tier Heroes
These Heroes will serve you well in certain situations, but you’ll need a bit of luck for things to go your way. Don’t discount them as options though! You’ll often find yourself doing brilliantly with a mid-tier Hero.
For 0 coins (always a nice start), Jandice is able to swap a friendly minion with a random one in the Tavern. Basically, switch a piece of token trash for something actually useful. At best, this is a free minion buy, which is extremely powerful. However, if you lowroll, this ability has the potential to do absolutely nothing.
Sylvanas’ ability allows her to sacrifice a minion to grant +1/+1 buffs to those adjacent to it. It’s 0 cost which makes it easy to use, and it enables you to gain value from binning minions. We’d recommend using this power to buff minions who don’t often see it, or those who you’d like to stick on the board. However, you won’t get refund gold for those shop rerolls or purchases so bear this in mind before you use it.
Elise’s Hero Power gives you a Recruitment Map every time you upgrade your Tavern. This manifests as a 3-coin spell that can Discover a minion of the tier you’ve just upgraded to. Its effect is weak in the early-game, as you’re not necessarily looking for anything in particular, but you can always save the spells for when you’ve got a solid gameplan in mind. Later on in the game, you can guarantee tier 5 and 6 minions, which can sometimes elude you in the Tavern when re-rolling normally. Elise is one of the tougher heroes to play, but with a bit of luck and forethought, it can all come together.
Zephrys the Great
This genie has one of those Hero Powers which can only be used a few times a game. Unfortunately, it also costs 4 coins, and although getting the third minion copy to make them golden is really handy, you’re usually better off just Refreshing the Tavern - this power’s potential is much lower thanks to its cost and how much of a turn you have to use to make it any use at all.
Kragg is another one of those ‘once per game’ Hero Powers. Piggy Bank costs 0 Gold, and gives you 1 Gold this turn. Free money! It even increases by 1 every turn, so late on you’ll be able to essentially take two turns in a row. Whilst smart players can make great late-game plays with this, the ability’s fleeting nature means it’s just as easily squandered, so don’t put yourself in a position where you overrely on it.
Patches the Pirate
Patches has been tweaked since his first addition to the game. Now, his Hero Power costs 4 Gold, and gives you a Pirate. You’re encouraged to purchase Pirate minions from the Tavern, because every time you do your Hero Power is decreased in cost by 1. Remember though - this isn’t permanent. When you use your discounted power for 0 Gold, it goes right back up to 4, so you can’t expect a huge pile of free Pirates. It’s a solid ability if the chips fall kindly, but you’re also forced pretty heavily into a Pirates build which might not work out every time.
Lord Barov has a unique Hero Power, which allows you to spend 1 coin to guess which player will win their 1v1. If they win, you get 3 coins in hand, and if they draw you get the 1 back. If you happen to guess correctly every time, you’ll be rolling in cash, but it’s surprisingly hard to do so unless you’re paying extremely close attention to everyone’s builds.
This cute little cat has a Passive Hero Power which lets you Discover a minion from an opponent's Warband when they die. You can even keep all the enchantments on that minion. This sounds wildly strong, but keep in mind you'll only Discover from dead enemies, so they won't have the ludicrous boards you're getting beaten by. Still, it's freebies with every death, so the longer you survive the better your rewards!
King Mukla has been tweaked - now, he gets 2 Bananas (which buff a minion by +1/+1 each), and gives each other player one. Two Bananas sounds great, but the buff isn’t so big when you realise you’re paying 1 coin for just a +1/+1 advantage on your enemies.
Low Tier Heroes
These are the Heroes with whom it's harder to have success with. Of course, they're not unviable, but you'll need to get far luckier or play much more skilfully to make them work.
Queen Wagtoggle’s Hero Power gives a random Mech, Murloc, Demon, and Beast +2 Attack. She’s got the potential for +4 Health every turn for just 1 coin. The main issue comes when you’re trying to build a team around her. She’s just too situational, and you’d usually rather focus your builds on a specific minion type. Even so, if you can get a zoo-style team going with all kinds of minion types, you can get them nice and upgraded to outlast your enemies by the end of the game. Again though, it takes a hell of a lot of luck to get the team you need.
Reno’s Hero Power - Gonna Be Rich! - for 4 gold, makes one of your minions golden. Sounds ludicrous. However, you can only use it once per game, making it sort of rubbish until the late game - you never want to waste it on a weak minion. Sure, if you can survive late, Reno can provide massive value, but there are usually other Hero picks who’ll get you to the late-game more reliably.
Vashj's Hero Power is a passive. Whenever you upgrade Bob's Tavern, she replaces all minions with ones from a higher tier. This sounds like it could be super powerful, but an ability that only takes effect once per upgrade is far from consistent, and towards the end of the game you become less and less likely to get what you want. By the mid-game, you're often looking for a certain type of build, and one opportunity to Refresh with higher tiered minions is far from helpful for that.
Eudora’s Buried Treasure Hero Power lets you dig for a guaranteed Golden minion. You have to dig 5 times to get the minion - it used to require 4. Unfortunately, this takes a bit too long to build up, especially since 1 gold a turn is often more than you can spare.
After you play 3 Elementals, Chenvaala’s Hero Power reduces the cost of a Tavern upgrade by 3 coins. This is an alright ability, but it forces you into Elementals, and it takes longer than you think to play 3 Elementals. Unfortunately, this Hero doesn’t quite do it for us.
In the right situations, you can get some truly ridiculous plays off with Shudderwock. It doubles your next minion’s Battlecry for 2 coins. Combined with minions like Pogo-Hopper, Shudderwock’s Hero Power can give you some truly ridiculous value that can carry you all the way to the late-game, but it’s heavily reliant on you being offered all these Battlecry minions throughout the game’s duration.
On the face of it, Bartendotron isn’t the sexiest offering when it comes to Hero Powers. However, the value of cheaper tavern tiers can’t be overstated. Rush your way to tier 6, and you’ll have far more time and gold to spend on crafting the perfect board with the very best minions. You’ll be the first to get your hands on Sneed’s Old Shredder, and it’ll be glorious.
Ysera lets you refresh the Tavern one time, and adds a guaranteed Dragon minion. It sounds pretty solid, but in practice isn't quite as strong. You can't get Dragons from ranks above your Tavern Tier, meaning often you'll get some rubbish selection like Dragonspawn Lieutenant. It forces you down the Dragons route too, which may not be ideal with your minion pulls.
Silas Darkmoon allow you to buy Darkmoon Tickets from the tavern, which allow you to Discover a minion from your tier when you buy 3. Unfortunately, this is rarely worth it, as you could just be spending those coins on rerolling for the minions you want. He’ll give you a little bit of utility, but far less than most.
Fungalmancer Flurgl does offer the chance for some highrolly plays, with his hero power Gone Fishing letting you sell murlocs in exchange for better ones. However, it's far too dependent on luck to work out a lot of the time, and it forces you down the path of Murlocs which will often lead to failure.
Illidan's left- and right-most minions attack immediately at the start of combat. Pretty spicy sounding, but unfortunately not as strong as you might think. Sure, you can highroll and get a couple copies of Goldrinn, the Great Wolf on either side, or King Bagurgle, but on the whole, this ability doesn't offer enough of an advantage compared to the higher-tier Heroes.
Bottom Tier Heroes
Trade Prince Gallywix*
Gallywix is an interesting case. For 1 coin, you get to save 1 coin for a later round. If you play your cards right, this can lead to some ridiculous turns later on in the game, but it’s incredibly tough to balance out this with losing out in the early game
Baz’hiel has the exact same Hero Power as Gallywix, except it costs 0 coins. Well, not the exact same unfortunately. You take 2 damage instead. This Hero is incredibly risky to play, and even if you manage to pick up a Mal'Ganis to mitigate the self-damage, this happens late in the game and you’re usually at too low a health total to make any mistakes at all by this point.
Hooktusk’s Hero Power allows you to remove a friendly minion from the board and Discover one from a Tier lower. This is a pretty cumbersome one to use effectively, and since a LOT of powerful abilities exist in this mode, Hooktusk’s one doesn’t give you much of a chance to get ahead.
For the cost of 1 coin, you can give any of your minions +10 attack for the next combat round. This has been buffed from before, where you had to give it to your left-most minion. Now, you're so much more flexible. Regardless of the buff though, Putricide's Hero Power is far too situational, and doesn't scale into the late game at all well. 10 Attack is nothing compared to what you'll be up against later on, and even though buffing a Cave Hydra in the mid-game is great, the effect only lasting a single round makes it hard to justify.
After your 7th Tavern Refresh, Bob will always have 7 minions available to choose from. This sounds decent, particularly as you’re going to be Refreshing a lot anyway, but it doesn’t give you enough extra choice and variety to last you until the late-game. In fact, this Hero Power encourages some pretty suboptimal play, with Refreshes occurring when buys should be, for example. Pick her if you want, but don’t expect miracles and try not to fall behind to early.
Unlike the old Brann, this version is underwhelming. For 1 coin, you Refresh the Tavern with all-Battlecry minions. Unless you’re going for some weird Crowd Favourite build, this is unlikely to do a huge amount for you as a whole though. Battlecry minions are just too inconsistent with what you’re going to get.
* - This Hero is currently unavailable in Battlegrounds, but will be returning in the future.
Remember, a skilled player can make all the Heroes work, so don’t be afraid of trying out someone we’ve ranked low on our list! Clinching that Lich Baz’hiel win is far more satisfying than cruising to an easy win with a top-tier.
Of course, the game is constantly updating and shifting - have a look at all the latest Hearthstone Battlegrounds Patch Notes for more information!