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Hearthstone Has a New World Champion

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A year of competition ends with a nail-biting reverse sweep in the final.

The newly revamped Hearthstone Championship Tour has come to an end in Amsterdam. More than 50,000 players competed to be one of the 16 finalists that qualified for the World Championship over the course of the last year, and now, after four days of incredible play and numerous upsets, Taiwanese player tom60229 has emerged victorious.

tom upset crowd favourite Fr0zen in the final match, coming back from 0-2 down to win three games in a row against Fr0zen’s Jade Druid, in an impressive performance. The USA's Fr0zen was widely tipped to win, having brought arguably the best line-up to counter the majority of the other players’ strategies – he was only one of two players that brought Control Mage - but ultimately tom’s composed play and next-level thinking pulled him through.

This was the first time the World Championship took place away from BlizzCon.

This was the first time the World Championship took place away from BlizzCon.

This is tom60229’s second appearance at Worlds – he reached the round of 16 back in 2014. He’s the first APAC winner of the World Championship, following in the footsteps of two European champions - Pavel in 2016 and Ostkaka in 2015, and one American champion, Firebat in 2014. He walks away with USD $250,000.

tom60229 enjoys the moment.

tom60229 enjoys the moment.

If you’re interested in the esports side of Hearthstone, why not read my interview with esports franchise lead Che Chou? You may also be interested in how well-known Hearthstone casters TJ Sanders and Raven got their foot in the door, and what it's like to live and breathe Hearthstone.

Cam Shea is senior editor in IGN's Sydney office and feels significantly worse at Hearthstone after watching the world's best for four days. He's on Twitter.