We've endeavoured to track down all of the terms you might hear used in our guides, other Hearthstone articles, or during professional matches on stream. If you're hearing a word or phrase that you don't understand and don't see listed here, let us know in the comments!

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Back to TopDefinition

 Aggro Short for aggressive, a type of deck that prefers to be on the offensive, going for direct damage and ignoring the opponent's board.
 Adventure In essence, a PvE experience in which a player tries to defeat AI opponents. Usually, rewards cards and a card back.
 AoE (Area of Effect) Spells that deal damage to multiple targets simultaneously (e.g.  Flamestrike).
 Arena A game type which costs 150 gold to enter. In it, players choose between one of three cards, 30 times until they have a full deck to play.
 BM Short for 'bad mouthed' or 'bad mannered,' frequently refers to the act of a player spamming emotes or continuing play even though they have lethal.
 Board Advantage Being the player who has the more favourable minion count or position on the board. Also referred to as Board Control.
 Board Clear/Wipe A card whose effect will kill most or all of the minions on either or both side(s) of the board.
 Bounce            The effect of returning a card to an opponent's hand (e.g.  Sap).
 Buff The act of increasing a card's strength. This can mean Blizzard changing the card to be stronger or a player simply applying a spell or effect that increases a card's stats.
 Cantrip Occasionally used to describe cards that draw a card, or 'replace themselves' (e.g.  Novice Engineer).
 Card Advantage The player who has more playable cards in hand has card advantage. Rarely, describes the player whose overall efficiency has been superior.
 Casual The default game mode in which wins and losses do not effect your rank. Can also function as another name for someone who only plays for fun.
 Character Can refer to a minion or a Hero. Spells or effects that target 'all characters' (e.g.  Abomination) will affect all minions and both Heroes.
 Clock Rarely used term for how many turns a player has until they are hypothetically defeated, based on current board state. If a player has 12 health and their opponent has a 4-damage minion on the board, they have a 3 turn 'clock'.
 Coining A term for playing a card using the additional mana point granted by  The Coin.
 Combo Either a selection of two or more cards frequently played in tandem, or the effect on Rogue cards played beyond the first card in a turn (e.g.  SI:7 Agent).
 Control A type of deck that likes to stall out the game before making big pushes with expensive cards and combos.
 Curve What the graph of the cost of your cards looks like. A good deck will have some low-, many mid-, and some high-cost cards, creating the 'curve' effect.
 Curving Out Playing a serious of turns with cards of the same mana cost. (e.g.  Leper Gnome on Turn 1,  Haunted Creeper on Turn 2, etc)
 Disenchant Rarely also shortened to 'dench' and often called 'dusting,' this is the process of destroying cards to gain the secondary resource, Arcane Dust, used to craft other cards.
 Dr. 7 A nickname for Dr. Boom who had become the staple seven cost minion prior to being rotated out of Standard.
 Drop Often heard as 'X Drop', referring a minion of X cost.
 Dust Shorthand for 'Arcane Dust' - the material gained by disenchanting cards. Used to craft new cards in the crafting menu.
 Hero Unlike Character, Hero refers exclusively to the player's character (e.g. Jaina, the Mage). Effects may damage the Hero alone.
 Fatigue Damage dealt to your character when you have no cards left to draw. Increases by one point per card drawn (e.g. the first three cards drawn during Fatigue deal a total of 6 damage - 1, 2, and 3, respectively).

 Flooding the Board

A phrase referring to quickly filling the board with minions.
 Lethal The amount of damage needed to bring your opponent's health to zero and win the match.
 Mana Efficiency Usually represented by a percentage, this is how much of the available mana you use each match. (e.g. Using one mana on Turn 2 is 50% Mana Efficiency)
 Meta Above and beyond individual matchups, which classes or styles of play are common, and why.
 Midrange A type of deck that aims to increase value incrementally through Turns 4-9 in order to overpower the opponent.
 Mill A verb that refers to the removal of cards from your deck. (e.g.  Fel Reaver's effect)
 Minion One of the three core types of cards in Hearthstone, minions are the creatures that you play to do battle for you on the board.
 Mulligan Term for getting to 'go again'. In Hearthstone, the mulligan is the option to redraw some, all, or none of your starting hand.
 Nerf The act of making a card weaker through one of many means including increased mana cost and decreased stats or effect.
 Net Deck Frequently used as a verb, this is a decklist that has been found online for use in Hearthstone. (As compared to making your own)
 On Curve Playing a card when you have exactly as much mana as you need to cast it. (e.g.  Azure Drake is On Curve on Turn 5)
 Ping Hitting a character for one point of damage.
 Ranked A game type in which your wins earn you stars and losses cause you to lose one star. Players can't lose stars until they're higher than Rank 20.
 RNG Acronym for random number generation, used to refer to events in Hearthstone that occur at random (e.g.  Ragnaros the Firelord targeting).
 Removal Refers to spells or other cards that can destroy or otherwise remove enemy minion(s) from the board. Removal referred to as 'hard' removal means it will destroy the minion outright (e.g.  Assassinate).
 Silence In Hearthstone, using a Silence effect removes any keywords or buffs from a minion. It does not reverse spells that change a minion into a different minion (e.g.  Polymorph).
 SMOrc A very aggressive deck or play that only goes to the opponent's face, ignoring everything on board even if they may counter trade. Especially refers to Hunter or Shaman aggro decks, since their default heroes are orcs. The name comes from Warhammer 40k's Space Marine  Orcs, who mindlessly swarm their enemies disregarding how many of their own may die in the process.
 Standard Hearthstone's competitive game mode which features the Basic and Classic sets as well as the last two year's worth of cards.
 Tavern Brawl A game type which changes rules each week and is only available for a limited amount of time. Generally a very casual experience.
 Tempo Tempo, or 'speed', applies in Hearthstone to cards that exceed expected value due to drawbacks. May also describe certain styles of deck in the same vein.
 Token A 'secondary' minion, summoned by a spell or effect (e.g.  Violet Teacher). May also refer to decks that utilize many token minions, such as Token Druid.
 Topdeck Literally referring to the 'top of the deck', or the card that is/was next to be drawn.

The act of killing an opponent's minion in exchange for one or more of your own.

 Wild Typically refers to a deck that uses cards from non-Standard sets.

Updated by the Hearthhead Staff on September 30, 2016.