Tag Archives: deck

Deck Simulator for Hearthstone Version 1.4 Released! (added all Rogue cards)

Version 1.4 of Deck Simulator for Hearthstone has been released on the Apple app store as a free iPad app.

The main highlight of this version is the addition of all Rogue cards (minions, weapons, and spells), and also the remainder of the Pirate-themed cards, bringing the total number of cards in the database over 400. I’ve added four new decks, three Rogue and one Warrior pirate deck.

Pirate cards (full list here) are one thing I was always curious about in Hearthstone. I didn’t want to spend my precious dust crafting these cards but I wondered how strong of a deck could be made which contained all of them. Though not entirely conclusive, using the simulator I got a strong indication that pirate decks really aren’t that strong (which was in line with my feelings on the matter). However if you know of a Pirate-themed deck that you think is especially good, let me know and I’ll test it out in the simulator and let you know how it performs.

One reason I had been hesitating about adding Rogue cards is because several of them contain a completely unique strategic element, “combo”, which is not used by any other class. Modifying the engine to handle the rules related to combo wasn’t too hard, but I had to do some tweaking of the AI engines to make them play Rogue decks with reasonably strong strategy.

In this release I also added the ability to copy the simulation log. This allows you to save the results of lengthy simulations you ran for later reference, or to save particularly interesting game logs for later. The logs are simple text so you can paste their contents into emails, blog posts, or anywhere else that accepts text. I hope to be showcasing how the AI works in future posts with the help of such logs.

References

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/deck-simulator-for-hearthstone/id914214349?mt=8

http://hearthstone.gamepedia.com/Pirate

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Detailed card statistics in the deck simulator

In addition to the 50-some cards I added to version 1.3 of Deck Simulator for Hearthstone, I also included a new feature where detailed statistics are tracked for each card and displayed in the “Game log” window at the end of the simulation, organized by deck.

I’ll give a few examples to explain what these statistics mean and how to interpret them:

  •  (Fireball): draw = 72%, play = 54%, att =  0%, died =  0%, dam = 3.268232

I think most of you already know “Fireball”, but just in case it’s a neutral spell that deals 6 damage to any minion or player for a cost of 4.

“draw” here represents the percentage of games in which a Fireball card was drawn. This includes even if the card is redrawn initially, or if the card is drawn and not used. Generally speaking, this number is a function of the number of the card in the deck (either 1 or 2) and how long the average game lasts. It doesn’t mean too much on its own, but is useful when combined with the other stats.

“play” here represents the percentage of games in which Fireball is played (cast). It must be less than or equal to the “draw” figure, since you can’t typically play a card without drawing it (except for a few special cases). If this figure is much lower than “draw”, then that usually means there wasn’t frequently enough mana to play the card or a good opportunity to play it.

“att”, “died” represent the number of times this card attacked or died in a game. It only applies for minions and is therefore 0% for spells like Fireball. “att” can be higher than “play” since a minion can attack several times a game if it stays alive or has windfury.

“dam” represents the total amount of damage this card dealt on average in all simulated games in the current run. For cards like spells you can sometimes figure this out from the other statistics (i.e. for this card we see that 6 x 0.54 = ~3.2), but for minions this number is a bit tricker since it includes damage both from battlecries, deathrattles, as well as attacking.

  • (Ragnaros the Firelord): draw = 71%, play = 52%, att =  0%, died = 21%, dam = 7.480020

Ragnaros, one of my most favorite cards, is a unique case since it is a minion but can’t attack, and so “att” statistic is 0%. However, since it does deal 8 damage at the end of your turn, the “dam” statistic is non-zero (around 7.5).

If you think about these statistics can you can draw some conclusions. For example, Ragnaros deals 8 at the end of each turn, yet it dealt around 7.5 on average. Putting this together with the fact that it was only played around half of games (52%), this implies that it dealt damage roughly twice per game, and was alive about two turns.

However, since it only died less than half of the time it was played (21% vs 52%), why didn’t it typically live more than two turns? Easy – this means that the game tended to end around two or three turns after Ragnaros was played, and I’m betting it was often in favor of the player who managed to play this great card.

  • (Elven Archer): draw = 64%, play = 63%, att = 38%, died = 58%, dam = 1.183317

In the case of Ragnaros, the card was played roughly 73% of the time (= 52%/71%) it was drawn, which is actually pretty high considering it costs 8. But if you look at Elven Archer (1 1/1 for cost of 1 with 1 damage during battlecry), it was played roughly 98% (= 63%/64%) of the time. This makes sense because it’s cost is so low.

With only a one in toughness, it died most of the time (58% / 64% = 90%) and only managed to deal 1.18 damage per game. This translates to 1.18 / 63% = 1.873 damage when it was played, and 1.0 of that is from the battlecry. However you shouldn’t jump to conclusions that this card was useless since it did so little damage-wise, because that would discount the preventative effect it might be having to kill enemy attackers or other minions that are part of dangerous combos.

You may be wondering why the draw rate is not higher than Ragnaros, the reason is because I have only one of this card in the deck (same as Ragnaros).

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These stats take some time to understand but I’m hoping many people will find them useful or at least interesting. For starters you can use the damage stat to see which cards are pulling their own weight and which are slacking, and tweak your deck to improve your overall win rate. And if you get creative, the sky is the limit!

Deck Simulator for Hearthstone 1.3 released (more cards)!

I’m very pleased to announce that version 1.3 of Deck Simulator for Hearthstone iPad app has been released on the Apple App store.

Since I’ve released this app I’ve gotten feedback from several people that there needs to be more cards added to fill out the entire set of Hearthstone cards. Adding cards is a time consuming process but I decided to focus on this for this release. I’ve added all Shaman-class cards as well as all Naxxramas cards, around ~50 new cards for a total of 366 in the database.  Though there are still some cards missing, this brings the percentage of total cards much higher and should make it a much more productive tool.

The Naxxramas cards are especially important since they can involve a lot of work to get hold in the actual game. With this app,  you can play around with the cards you haven’t had a chance to acquire yet.

Besides the new cards I’ve also fixed a bug which made the Planner AI weak in certain cases, and also added card level statistics which appear at the end of each simulation and give important information such as average amount of damage dealt by each card. I’ll write up on a post on this feature soon.

Here is the app’s page on iTunes:

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/deck-simulator-for-hearthstone/id914214349?mt=8

You can also search for it in the app store with the keywords “Hearthstone Deck Simulator”  (without quotes).

Deck Simulator for Hearthstone’s “HELO” rating system

Initially I thought it would be fun to write a simulator which implemented all the rules of Blizzard’s excellent Hearthstone game, and allowed me to experiment with different types of strategies. But the more I work on this project the more I try to think about how others might use this app to enhance their Hearthstone experience.

Playing virtual games of various decks is interesting, and can help you tune a deck to perform better in actual games. But I have a feeling that many people don’t want to execute several runs of simulations and then try and compare the results, since this can be a tedious process with various levels of interpretation. The deck simulator is an experimental workbench for Hearthstone cards, after all.

However, I thought it would be nice if there was an easy way to grasp a deck’s strength, something which would allow a ballpark understanding of it with a single glance.

What I came up with is “HELO”, which stands for “Hearthstone Elo”, where “Elo” is the rating system commonly used in many competitive games, such as chess.

The actual algorithm and it’s analysis can get a bit complicated, but in a nutshell it works by maintaining a rating of strength which decreases when you loose and increase when you win. The amount of ratings adjustment is proportional to the rating of the opponent, and the number of games played by both also factors in.

Deck Simulator for Hearthstone manages this rating for each deck in the system, which is updated after each game and stored for later. The rating is displayed in three places:

  • On the ‘Edit Decks’ screen (bottom right), where it is listed next to the total number of games played in parenthesis (Ex: 1568 (10000)).
  • On the ‘Simulation’ screen’s game results, on the far left in brackets (Ex: [1805])
  • On the Participants detail window which appears when you click on a specific participant on the Simulation screen.

For all decks which come with the app when you download it I’ve already ran some simulations and generated their HELO score, and also configured things so they don’t change much. If you create a new deck it will start with a default rating of ‘1500’, and for the first few hundred games it can change greatly depending on how it performs in the simulator. The most important thing is not the number itself, but how it compares to the existing decks in the database.

One of the challenges with this feature is that the performance of a deck depends on not only the deck composition but also the strategy used by the AI player. I could have added separate ratings for each AI player as well and combined ratings, but to keep things simple I just have generated the existing ratings using only ‘Evl Planner (med)’, which is usually the strongest AI. You can use any AI you like, but for direct comparison you should use the same AI player to the extent possible. If you want to reset a deck’s rating you can simply copy that deck (use the green “Copy Deck” button on the “Edit Decks” screen) and it will start over at a rating of 1500 and 0 games. Another thing to keep in mind is that the rating is not reset when you modify a deck, so if you planning to make serious modifications to a deck you might want to copy it first you can compare the before and after, and have a proper rating for both.

An interesting thing about HELO is that sometimes it doesn’t match up with the overall win percentages of a simulation run (even if all the decks started fresh). The reason for this is that a higher win percentage (say, when comparing two decks) means “this deck won more overall games than this deck”, but a higher HELO means “this deck beat other decks with relatively higher ratings than this other deck”. So you can imagine a generalist deck that is designed to win as often as possible (versus any opponent), versus a specific counter deck targeting the stronger decks, and these would have different HELO vs win rates.

Please try out the latest version (1.2) on the Apple app store (link here) and let me know what you think of the rating system.

If you happen to find a deck over 1900 or so (the highest in the database at present), drop me a line as I’m curious to see it’s composition.

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elo_rating_system

Deck Simulator for Hearthstone – iTunes – Apple

Detailed per-participant statistics in the HS deck simulator

One of the new features in Deck Simulator for Hearthstone 1.2 is the ability to look at statistics for individual participants on the ‘Simulation’ screen. This can be done by clicking on the participant’s name in the bottom table either during or after the simulation finishes.

If you click on one of these you’ll see a window which gives this type of information:

  • Details for ‘Evl. Planner (med) > R’s Paladin Deck 1’ [deck rating 1805]
    • 62 % [avg turns 10] VS Evl. Planner (med) > Evolved Paladin 205
    • 30 % [avg turns 9] VS Evl. Planner (med) > Evolved Paladin 215

I’ve bolded the important information in the above excerpt and will describe these below:

  • Win rate against a specific other participant, which is listed as “VS XXX” on the same line.
  • Average number of turns the game lasted before the game ended

The first of these is useful if you are running a simulation in ‘all play all’ mode because the percentage you get on the simulations screen is the average number of wins vs. all other participants, so clicking on that participant will give you information about which decks/players it is strong against and which is is weak against. Another way to check this is just run a ‘all play first’ mode in which the first listed participant plays each other.

The average number of turns the game lasted is interesting since some decks are designed to win after a long, drawn-out game and others to crush quickly, so you can use this number to get some feel for that.

One thing to keep in mind is that if you view the detailed stats while a simulation is in progress it will continue running (and update behind the window), but the window’s stats will not update in real time.

In the future I may add some more information here about each participant. If you have any suggestions, please let me know.

In my next post I’ll talk about the ‘deck rating’ which was mentioned in the above example.

 

Deck Simulator for Hearthstone V1.2 Released on Apple App Store!

I’m very happy to announce Deck Simulator for Hearthstone‘s 3rd version (1.2) is now available on the Apple App store!

For this release I decided to take a break from adding new cards and focus on adding a few features that will make the tool easier to use and more productive.

For example, I’ve added a very cool feature that allows you to evaluate to what extent each card in a deck is contributing to it’s overall strength, and also added a rating system for decks to easily compare them (HELO = Hearthstone ELO).

For full details of the release please see the app’s page here:

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/deck-simulator-for-hearthstone/id914214349?mt=8

The app is currently completely free, with no ads, though will only be this way for a limited time.

I’ll be writing some more posts in the feature highlighting some of these new features and discussing how to use them.

Deck Simulator for Hearthstone V1.1 released!

I’m very happy to announce V1.1 of Deck Simulator for Hearthstone has been approved by Apple and is currently available on iTunes as an iPad app.

The main purpose of this release was to address a few crashes that I discovered, and also reduce memory used by the simulator. This allows longer simulations to be run without them being stopped due to lack of memory.

One of the crashes occurred when attempting to play a simulation with a deck containing 29 or less cards. I fixed this so it doesn’t crash, but instead gives a warning so you know you are testing a non-legal deck. I decided to allow this because making decks with less than 30 cards can be fun, and even useful when doing deck construction. I’m sure some of you wondered what would happen if you could create a small deck with only a few cards, and now you can actually see how strong such decks would be.

Another bug I fixed was where the default simulation type was “All play all”, even though the button showed “All play first” selected.

I decided to add an extra bonus which is all the cards for the Warlock class (previously they were not in the database), as well as three sample Warlock decks to play around with.

I’m already working on the next release and hope to have that out in a few weeks, but in the meantime try out the latest version and enjoy!