Rather than creating an entirely new sub-forum that will just feel empty and abandoned, I thought I might just start a big Hearthstone thread for anyone that wants to "talk shop" in a centralized place.

To kick things off, since I play primarily Arenas and have kept track of my statistics doing so since I began, I thought I'd share the Hearthstone Arena Tracker spreadsheet I created (or more accurately, dramatically improved from the original). You can see my current stats of course looking at the default version and there are full usage instructions in the "Instructions" sheet itself, but essentially this allows anyone to easily track their Arena stats in the "Data" sheet, and see tons of detailed info about their overall Arena play in the "Stats" sheet. You can even filter it by date range if you want to see how you've done during certain periods or watch your "progress"!

The second cool thing I wanted to share is this interesting article written by Hamlet (a well-known Druid theory-crafter from WoW) that talks in great detail about the economy of Hearthstone, specifically the rate of obtaining "sets" of cards (such as the entire set or all legendaries or what not) and the rate at which players can expect to obtain those based on the returns of both cards and disenchanted Dust from obtained packs. It's a long but good read if you're into that sort of thing, but below I've pulled a few select quotes that are quite interesting:

Arenas will complicate this, and I expect will generally increase the efficiency. Your 150 gold investment in an Arena can be bifurcated into a 100 gold purchase of an ordinary pack (your guaranteed prize pack) and a 50 gold Arena fee. The 50 gold Arena fee will get you some mix of gold, Dust, packs, and golden cards, depending on how many games you win. I’ll avoid speculating on the value until I have data like I said, but observe that it would not take much for the mean prize value to exceed 50. To evaluate a Dust, remember that at the end of the process we turn a huge pile of Dust into all of the cards we don’t yet have. The last few packs of cards are likely to be turned mostly into Dust to meet this goal. Since a fully disenchanted pack is worth 93 Dust, acquiring 93 Dust earlier in the process willy likely save us one pack or 100 gold. So as a rule of thumb, 1 Dust will be worth around 1 gold. Coupled with the fact that an extra prize pack (100 gold) or a golden rare+ card (shaving anywhere from 100 to 3200 Dust off of the process) can, even at small probabilities, increase the expected prize by quite a bit.The first thing I simulated is the process described above: opening packs until you can obtain a complete playset. For this first run, the simulator disenchanted any card once it had more 2 non-golden and golden copies combined, and will always favor disenchanting golden copies (but the final collection may still have some golden cards in it). In other words, the most efficient approach to obtaining a complete set without regard for golden, and without doing any premature crafting.

The results were, over 10,000 runs:

- The average number of packs needed was 512, with a standard deviation of 42.
- The average amount of Dust used to craft cards at the end was 28,522, or 27% of the total craft value of the set.
- 100% of commons, 99% of rares, 85% of epics, and 54% of legendaries were found by opening (rather than crafting).
For example, since in the simulations, 99.9999% of commons were opened in packs rather than crafted, you can assume than any crafting of a common is a waste of 35 Dust in the long run: the craft cost minus the 5 you’ll recover from disenchanting it later. The same is true even for rares–you have a 99% chance to be out 80 Dust at the end of the process. Whether these costs are worth it in any case is up to you, but it’s worth understanding why that Dust is a long-term cost to your collection.

Crafting legendaries is actually a better proposition, as there’s a 46% chance you wouldn’t have opened it even after 512 packs (note the sanity check here against our napkin math of half the legendaries opened after 450 packs). In that case, you incur no cost at all. If you do have to disenchant that same card later, however, it’s a waste of 1200 Dust.For people interested in the full all-golden set, this is the same simulation over 10,000 runs:

- The average number of packs has gone up to 2789, with a standard deviation of 101.
- The average amount of Dust for crafting is 220,369, or 51.4% of the total value.
- 77% of commons, 69% of rares, 35% of epics, and 19% of legendaries were opened in packs.

So, don’t aim for a full gold set unless it’s worth more to you than a new computer or two. In general you can interpret all of these numbers similarly as the non-golden numbers, but I want to highlight that the increase in pack requirements may be larger than you expected. The more expensive golden cards only require 4 times the Dust of their non-golden counterparts, but the commons you need are no longer easy to find, making the whole operation take substantially longer.