-Not uncommon the devs at HS forums deleted my post, so I signed up here so it can see some light, enjoy!-
I am actually very pumped for this new expansion in a way I haven't been for a while. I sincerely feel you should be too, This is a real crux for this Blizzard team to demonstrate that they know what they are doing and can rear their fangs to incoming opposition.
So far from these cards, I believe they really do and that this one is going to raise the bar or at least be a very strong hit after the two, albeit humbling, not so much exciting expansions.
I have been so excited that I have scoured youtube watching the same personalities as you probably do review the new cards, as always deferring to what is IN play but not to what is TO come.
Savage Striker - A spell that gives your hero attack damage based on hand size could make this card a 'strike that taunt down and go face hard' card. Notice how in the demo for it the druid has 8 attack power.
Springpaw - Obvious Quest or Hyaena rumblings, but even without it is a faster Firefly. An awesome utility card to make up for Hunter's poor hero power.
Baited Arrow - A more reliable Bane of Doom on surface, but unlike that it can go face. This one is a little hard to defend, but is still an ok card to keep pace in Arena.
Pyromaniac - Very acceptable! Either a 3/4 that needs to be cleaned up fast or a 5 mana deal 1 damage, summon a 3/4, draw a card miniature of UI
Hex Lord Malacrass - I would not underestimate this with 'Handmage' if it's going to be getting more tools: Listen, you gladly pay 3 mana to draw two cards all the time, right? Here is a 5/5 that draws you three or four for 8 mana. Players WILL learn how to manipulate that. A very brilliant deck building challenge.
Immortal Prelate - Streamers are correct that the challenge remains in how to retrieve it back after it is shuffled. We are living in the time of tutor mania however and I wouldn't bet against a few new ones arising. E.G. "2 mana paladin spell": draw a minion from your deck with the highest health". Good value if it's this guy.
Shirvallah, the Tiger - Love it. I think this is going to be the ace in the hole for a slower paladin build. Imagine how for 7 mana you can heal up 28 with just this, the BDP legend, and Blessed Champion. Ofc one would never put that last one in the deck. Unless... 2 mana 2/2 deathrattle: add a Blessed Champion to your hand. xD
Surrender to Madness - I BELIEVE! I BELIIIIIEEEEVE. Zoo Priest is the obvious conclusion but it seems a little obvious. I think the cards to come will reveal this one or it will have to play itself out. There is Shadow Visions for one thing. Also there's the fact Loot Hoarder and Dead Ringer can be in play when you play it. How about... 1 mana: both players draw their two lowest costed minions from their deck? Maybe call it Pittance Project.
Spirit of the Shark- (edit) This one is boundless. Tess is just one example or the bunny rebellion. There will certainly be something brewing here even if it's just the 5 mana Cold Blood caster, equaling *16* damage if played with DK. I'm sure something even more wicked this way comes....
Cannon Barrage - I think we are all devilishly looking forward to what damage this can do and in reality we may regret it. The card that would compliment this greatest would be a cheap Windfury weapon for Valeera. A 3 mana 2/2 wf windfury weapon would become a 21 damage frenzy to the opposite board with just one Prep if played with two fans for 5 cards at ten mana.
Rain of Toads - pass.
Spirit of the Bat - An awesome card for the Knife Juggler types. This archetype will live and die with what other tools have yet to be revealed. I for one am certain there are a few more to come. Perhaps a minion that if is altered while in your hand summons a copy of itself onto your board with rush (includes Mind Vision) ok fine, rushed one here.
Void Contract - I am going to go with the 5 mana batlecry minion that casts a random spell in your deck. May want to watch out for this being cast by the 4/7 to save tempo since it basically has taunt on it as well.
Hir'eek, the Bat - This just needs a minion that gives all minions in your hand taunt. meta!
Sul'thraze - expect some kind of weapon buff. That or a card that reads, "this turn damage done to enemy minions is also dealt to opponent"... meaning you Fool's bane his !@# down one by one.
Sharkfin Fan - see Cannon Barage. But also, I would love to see Pirates go into mill/theft. Just at least for the shits and the gigglings, an Epic Pirate boss costing 4 that causes all of your Pirates to remove the top card from opponent's deck shuffling into yours. Yeah. Lab Recruit that guy!
Dunno maybe i got too spoiled with magic but everything seems so unspiring. Everything but pala's and mage legendary seems lazy. But i will willhold my judgement until all cards are released. I really hope they succeed with this expansion.
My biggest hope is they are going backwards instead of haphazardly forward with concepts they give us. Making control pal a thing as well as minion Priest/Mage, and hand Druid/Mage. Tuning up failures > introducing new ones imo. Going for the long shot, Quest Pal, Hunter, Shaman, and Warlock would be awesome if they can finally give them some love after almost 2 years : D
I'm glad someone can have a creative open minded response to a new card, like when you said "pass"
Wow. Pass. That's a good point. I'll have to spend some time to think of a response so I can discuss it in more detail with you.
It would be easier to make fun of your other comments though. Of course set reviewers aren't reviewing future non-existent cards.They are examining initial power level of the card itself. Most reviewers will do a full set review when they have the whole picture.
If I could design any card I wanted every card in the set could be potentially broken. But that's not how the game works. A ton of cards in HS have 0 support. A ton of them don't have enough support to be viable. Remember hand druid? Treant Druid? Freeze Shaman? Rush Warrior? I can go on and on.