One player attempts to calculate Hearthstone's upcoming meta.

It's no secret that at some point the new Journey to Un'Goro meta will be solved and everything will settle into place. This happens with each and every expansion. We just got out of a time period where Pirate Warrior and Aggro Shaman made up a large portion of the meta because of their high win rates against many of the other decks that were seeing play. Using ViciousSyndicate's live data reaper table, Reddit user Aaron_Lecon has applied a Nash Equilibrium equation to the current metagame in an attempt to find out what the meta will look like for the next couple of months.

What's a Nash Equilibrium you ask? In short, it's a way to solve a non-cooperative game assuming every player knows each other's equilibrium strategies. Aaron explains it well:

In this state, there are two types of deck: non-viable decks (also called bad decks), which have sub-50% win rate, and that nobody plays. The other decks are called viable, and they do see a certain amount of play and all have exactly 50% win-rate. Thus, there is no way of 'countering the meta' since switching deck gives you 50% win rate or worse. Since no one has any incentive to switch from one of the viable decks, the meta stagnates here for ever.

Aaron also explains that there are a few assumptions:

  • Vicious Syndicate's data reaper table (as it was yesterday) is accurate.
  • If a deck has a positive (over 50%) win rate, more people will play it. If a deck has a negative (less than 50%) win rate, less people will play it.
  • The number of people who start or stop playing a deck is proportional to the difference between its win rate and 50% (so for example, if two decks have 54% and 51% win rates, then for every person who starts playing the second deck, there are 4 people who start playing the first one).

Now all of that considered, the data shows that these will be the top decks going forward along with a percentage of the meta they'll likely be.

  1. Midrange Paladin - 37%
  2. Aggro Shaman - 20%
  3. Murloc Paladin - 14%
  4. Freeze Mage - 11%
  5. Elemental Shaman - 10%
  6. Crystal Rogue - 6%
  7. Pirate Warrior - 3%

Falling outside of the viable deck cutoff line are other popular archetypes including Dragon Priest, Token Druid, Taunt Warrior, Midrange Hunter, Secret Mage, and Miracle Rogue.

It's an interesting analysis, but it assumes that the ViciousSyndicate data is absolutely correct. There's a fair chance it's not considering how relatively small and slightly skewed its sample size is compared to the population as a whole.

If you're interested in how Aaron's analysis has fared in the past, check out his Nash Equilibrium for the Gadgetzan meta. In it, he pegs Aggro Shaman as the top deck with Mid-Jade Shaman falling outside of the viability range. He does note that it comes so close as to be within the margin of error, however. He also recompiled the results after the nerfs to Small-Time Buccaneer and Spirit Claws, finding that Dragon Warrior would reign supreme.