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    posted a message on The Exhaustive Madness at the Darkmoon Faire Preview

    Before the expansion releases, I'd like to jot down a few reactions I had to learning of the general opinions of other reviewers, some of which surprised me quite a bit:

    It's true that Trampling Rhino may not have been as good as I initially predicted. I have to admit that the body itself isn't all that impressive, and it doesn't benefit from the buffs as much as other cards might. This is one card which I might have been absolutely off the mark with.

    I wasn't expecting Malevolent Strike to be...less than popular. Some people are saying that Rogue has already has good removal like Sap and Flik Skyshiv, but I'm pretty confident that a 1, potentially 0 mana Assassinate is a good enough reason to cut those other removal cards from your deck. The general consensus seems to be that C'Thun Rogue won't work, and I think that with the Galakrond package, Rogue has more than enough card draw to pull it off. So I can safely say that I disagree strongly with the other reviewers on this one.

    I was mainly envisioning the Silver Hand cards to spawn their own deck, but others seem to think that they should be used in Pure Paladin. While this isn't crazy, I don't think this is better than what Pure Paladin can already do, so I struggle to see how the cards can justify inclusion in the deck. But who knows, they might surprise me.

     

    Posted in: General Discussion
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    posted a message on The Exhaustive Madness at the Darkmoon Faire Preview

    Below I have written a guide detailing my predictions for the upcoming cards in the Madness at the Darkmoon Faire set. Similarly to Trump, I will be grading each card from 1 to 5 stars, meaning:

    5 Stars: Staple in a Tier 1 deck or a staple in multiple Tier 2 decks.
    4 Stars: Occasionally used in a Tier 1 deck, a staple in a Tier 2 deck, or a staple in multiple Tier 3 decks.
    3 Stars: Occasionally used in a Tier 2 deck, a staple in a Tier 3 deck, or a staple in multiple Tier 4 decks
    2 Stars: Sees at least 1% of play in a Tier 4 deck or has seen some amount of tournament success.
    1 Star: Fails to maintain a 1% playrate in Diamond or above.

    I have tried to avoid watching other people's card reviews beforehand, so you can be confident that the opinions below are my own and not tainted by anyone else's perception. Enjoy.

    Demon Hunter

    Acrobatics: 4 Stars – An extremely strong card in a currently weak archetype, albeit one with room for improvement with the new set. Having effective forms of refill is important for Voracious Reader decks, so this should make the cut as long as Aggro Demon Hunter is viable (which it might not be, but I’m optimistic here).

    Dreadlord's Bite: 3 Stars – This weapon is fair for the cost, but it directly competes with better options such as Marrowslicer, Umberwing, and Felsteel Executioner, and thus would normally end up outclassed. However, a certain new archetype may be able to make use of it…

    Felscream Blast: 2 Stars – Normally, a card like this would need spell damage synergy to work, and Demon Hunter doesn’t have that. However, the new legendary wants lifesteal cards to work with, and this is one of the better ones available. For that reason, I’m not ruling it out entirely.

    Insatiable Felhound: 2 StarsAshtongue Battlelord sees no play whatsoever. This card is arguably better, but Demon Hunter doesn’t have much use for a card like this. Similarly to Felscream Blast, the only reason this doesn’t get a “1” is because it’s possible that Il’gynoth could make use of it.

    Line Hopper: 3 Stars – Demon Hunter has a good chunk of cheap Outcast cards that you can string together with this, and many of them draw cards. The question is whether Outcast strings will be reliable and consistent enough to fit into a constructed deck. My guess is that an Outcast Demon Hunter archetype will emerge, but not end up as a particularly strong choice (perhaps somewhere in Tier 3).

    Redeemed Pariah: 3 Stars – Good card even if you can only play one outcast card; think Totem Golem without the overload. If you have it on the board when starting a Line Hopper chain, then it becomes even more ridiculous. But is a good card like this enough to spawn a new archetype? Only time will tell.

    Relentless Pursuit: 1 Star – This spell is very underwhelming. Shadow Bolt is a weak card, and this isn’t much better. Even though this card helps activate Bladed Lady, Demon Hunter has better options to get to six attack than this.

    Renowned Performer: 1 Star – This is pack filler in the same vein as Vilefiend Trainer. It’s fair for the cost, but Demon Hunter has no synergy with Rush, Taunt or Deathrattle strong enough to justify putting it in your deck.

    Bladed Lady: 5 Stars – Oh my god this is absolutely insane. Think about how easy it is for Soul Demon Hunter to hit 6 attack, and then just imagine this coming down along with it. A great card for an archetype which is already the best in the game.

    Throw Glaive: 2 Stars – This card would be ridiculous in any class which has a viable control deck. Sadly, Demon Hunter is poorly suited to take advantage of this. We want to be attacking face, not minions, and we don’t want to cut any of the really good removal cards that see play in Soul Demon Hunter, such as Shardshatter Mystic and Blade Dance, for this.

    Expendable Performers: 1 Star – Someday they’re going to give Token Demon Hunter real support instead of one or two throwaway cards per expansion. At least, that’s what I keep telling myself…

    Felsteel Executioner: 3 Stars – As a potential 3 mana 4/3 weapon, it’s very tempting to put this in an Aggro deck, but the problem is the lack of activators for the weapon: you don’t want to be running a lot of 4 mana cards in decks with Acrobatics and Voracious Reader. Soul Demon Hunter might want to try this, but it already has Marrowslicer and Aldrachi Warblades, two weapons which are central to the deck and should not be replaced. Is six weapons too many? I think it probably is. The most likely scenario where this sees play is in a totally new archetype, but it’s hard to envision what that looks like or if it will exist at all.

    Stiltstepper: 4 Stars – Only good in a deck with very few cards that cost more than 3 mana. Fortunately, Voracious Reader and Acrobatics highly encourage us to play a deck like that in the first place. It’ll be hard for aggressive decks to say no to this.

    Il'gynoth: 5 Stars – Il’gynoth could potentially lead to the discovery of a new lifesteal-centric archetype, but what is more likely is that it will be used in conjunction with cards like Aldrachi Warblades and Soulshard Lapidary for a powerful swing. The prospect of dealing 12-16 damage to the face in just one blow is so overwhelming that Il’gynoth will almost certainly end up as a staple in Soul Demon Hunter. Just a fantastically toxic card which will likely lead to players teching in Acidic Swamp Ooze like crazy.

    Zai, the Incredible: 3 Stars –  A 5 mana 5/3 with a pseudo-draw 2 effect certainly isn’t bad, but the question is whether any deck want to include this over better options. Perhaps the synergy with Skull of Gul’dan will make it worthwhile? Perhaps the Outcast chains will be easier if this can generate more copies of cheap outcast cards? Perhaps a second Soulciologist Malicia makes the inclusion worth it? It’s not unthinkable that Zai makes the cut, but there’s no obvious archetype where she fits in well.  

    Druid

    Faire Arborist: 1 Star – I like the card, but I don’t like the archetype it’s supposed to function in. Treant Druid has taken a pretty big hit since rotation, and I don’t see this bringing it back.

    Lunar Eclipse: 5 Stars – So, it’s like backstab but with 3 damage and no “undamaged” requirement? Hell yeah that’s good, sign me up. The only downside compared to Backstab is that you have to play a spell to get the cost reduction benefit, but that doesn’t seem very difficult for Druid to do.

    Solar Eclipse: 3 Stars – Very scary but needs a specific spell to double in order to work. You could combo this with Kael’thas and Survival of the Fittest, but that could end up being too clunky. It’s hard to say, which is why I’m giving this a tentative 3.

    Fizzy Elemental: 1 Star – This card is so strange and so out-of-place that I feel like I’m missing something. Maybe N’Zoth wants it for its Elemental tag? I have no idea what this is doing in Druid, and I can’t envision a deck which wants a slightly better Burly Shovelfist. Who knows, maybe this will shock me somehow.

    Moontouched Amulet: 4 Stars – This card makes sense in Y’Shaarj Druid, unlike Faire Arborist. It’s less awkward to play off-curve, and more impactful when generated by Y’Shaarj. I’d say it has a high chance of seeing play so long as Y’Shaarj is good in Druid, which it probably will be.

    Umbral Owl: 3 Stars – A good card to compliment a spell-heavy Yogg deck with Fungal Fortunes and Glowfly Swarm. I doubt such a deck will be top-tier, but it’ll probably be good enough to see some competitive play.

    Cenarion Ward: 1 Star – For an 8-mana card like this to see play, you either need it to have extremely strong synergy or it needs to be strong enough as a standalone that decks are willing to slot it in. This card is neither, and while it does get substantially better with Solar Eclipse, that’s not enough to convince me that this can work.

    Guess the Weight: 1 Star – I really dislike the high probability of this ending up as a two-mana draw one. You need consistency, and this card does not provide that, which means it will be outclassed by the other forms of card draw Druid has available to the class. It’s not even particularly spectacular if you guess correctly.

    Greybough: 1 Star – There are two major problems with this card. The first is that it is completely reliant on having other minions on the board when it dies in order to respawn. Many board clears will wipe the slate clean in one go, thus negating the deathrattle. The second is that there is not really an archetype that currently exists where this can fit in well. Is this supposed to be used in Treant Druid? I have no idea. Overall, a very underwhelming legendary.

    Kiri, Chosen of Elune: 2 Stars – Initially this card looked very impressive until I realized that you could just put the Solar and Lunar Eclipses into your deck without Kiri. As a result, this card seems a tad unnecessary. Maybe it can help improve the consistency of some combo deck with Solar Eclipse, but I wouldn’t be surprised if most players just left it on the shelf.

    Hunter

    Dancing Cobra: 3 Stars – Could be potent enough to find its way into Highlander Hunter. Unlikely to see play in other decks because it doesn’t take advantage of any good synergies in this set, but it’s likely strong enough as a standalone.

    Mystery Winner: 5 Stars – Busted; it’s like Secret Plan except better, 100% chance of seeing play. I will say I’m not particularly fond of the whole “reprint old cards which saw play, except better” thing Hunter has going on (like Wolpertinger last expansion).

    Open the Cages: 2 Stars – Not really a fan of how hard the condition is to pull off, and the reward is a slightly cheaper Animal Companion. However, Hunter has a higher demand for secrets than usual this expansion, so this could make the cut.

    Darkmoon Tonk: 4 Stars – This one surprised me. After looking at the synergy between it and Maxima, I initially decided that this was probably going to be a one-star card. However, when theorycrafting a Highlander Hunter deck with N’Zoth as a win condition, it doesn’t look so bad. The synergy with Nine Lives and Oblivitron is probably enough to keep it in the realm of playability. I could be 100% wrong about this one, but it’s fun to go out on a limb every so often.

    Petting Zoo: 5 Stars – Absolutely insane. Even with one secret, it’s good, and with multiples it becomes obscene. Encourages an aggressive board-flooding strategy which Hunter can make good use of.

    Trampling Rhino: 4 Stars – Yay, Overkill’s back. Face Hunter can make good use of this, especially since it has some synergy with Scavenger’s Ingenuity. It's a good lategame card for a deck which could use a more potent lategame.

    Don't Feed the Animals: 1 Star – It’s not the worst card I’ve ever seen in my life, but it’s very lackluster as a handbuff card even when corrupted. I mean, just compare it to Into the Fray. You aren’t going to be running enough beasts to justify this card.

    Jewel of N'Zoth: 3 Stars – Very tempting, but Hunter only has a few strong deathrattle minions available to it, and running this card in a Deathrattle deck encourages us to cut weaker deathrattles (such as Ursatron and Zixor) just so we ensure that we only resurrect strong ones. This is definitely a card to consider, but it’s probably too clunky to make the final cut.

    Maxima Blastenheimer: 1 Star – If you thought Jewel of N'Zoth had a bad deckbuilding restriction, just wait ‘til you see this. We have to forego earlygame minions entirely and rely on Hunter’s limited control tools just to play this, and while you might get a good highroll like Darkmoon Tonk or Scrapyard Colossus, what happens after your opponent answers those threats? What happens if you never draw this? Building a deck around Maxima is a fool’s errand, and I’d be shocked if this turned out to be any good.

    Rinling's Rifle: 5 Stars – This card gives you a lot of value for the cost (think of it as a corrupted Ring Toss with a 2/2 weapon attached, albeit with weaker secrets). It’s a good way to set up a strong Petting Zoo turn, since you’re paying for the second secret up front (Turn 4 you play this, turn 5 you swing, play a secret, and then get 9/9 in stats). A natural fit for Secret Hunter, which should be very good in this meta.

    Mage

    Confection Cyclone: 5 Stars – An even better Fire Fly which not only activates Gyreworm for the next turn, but also gives you cheap elementals which can be played later in the game to activate your Elemental Allies or Animated Avalance.

    Firework Elemental: 2 Stars – Elemental decks will be tempted to use it due to the tag and strong effect. However, the condition for the effect is brutal; you have to play a 6 mana card first before you can use it as intended. Problem is, Elemental decks will be incentivized to run a lot of cheap spells to justify cards like Mana Cyclone and Elemental Allies. I don’t think it makes the cut.

    Game Master: 3 Stars – A little bit of an awkward card. You won’t be able to cheat out a secret any earlier than you normally would with it, and it’s generally not a card you want to play on Turn 2. This makes it a weird fit for Secret decks, which usually try to be aggressive. It’s not bad, but not quite “busted” enough to skyrocket Secret Mage to Tier 1 or anything.

    Grand Finale: 5 Stars – Excellent win condition for Mage. The class has a good number of cheap elementals which means setting this up on Turn 7 shouldn’t be too hard, and the payoff is enormous. Absolute must-use card for the archetype.

    Mask of C'Thun: 1 Star – I might be more enthusiastic about this if Dragoncaster still cost 6 mana, but Mage has long since abandoned big spells as an archetype, and it’s unlikely they’ll come back soon. Even if Highlander mage comes back, this just might not be impactful enough to make it in; it’s so glaringly inferior to Reno the Relicologist.

    Ring Toss: 1 Star – The Corrupt keyword really kills this card. Looking at a Secret deck, there generally aren’t very many cards you want to be playing that cost more than 4 mana (Cloud Prince and Sayge ae basically the only ones), and the payoff isn’t good enough to justify how inconsistent the extra effect will be.

    Occult Conjurer: 3 Stars – This, along with the card below, is the real reason why I think Secret Mage has some potential. On turn 4, this is a strong earlygame play, and its condition is easy to activate when you have a secret which can reliably stay untriggered such as…

    Rigged Faire Game: 3 Stars – Remember Sanctuary? That card had a good effect for its mana cost, but it never saw play because, as it turns out, it’s quite easy for your opponent to damage your face. Fortunately, when you have cards like Occult Conjurer, Cloud Prince, and Ethereal Arcanist which rely on secrets going untriggered, it’s fine for Rigged Faire Game to sit there for a few turns. If triggered, it gives the deck card draw, something the archetype lacks. Secret Mage is a very weak archetype at the moment, but these two epics help a lot to make it more competitive.

    Deck of Lunacy: 2 Stars – Fun meme card, but far too inconsistent to use in a constructed deck. Will likely see play in Spell Mage (a weak archetype that has consistently had a strangely high playrate for some reason), but it’s not doing much to boost the winrate, many of the spells you get from this are quite weak even when discounted. It might even be a liability.

    Sayge, Seer of Darkmoon: 3 Stars – One of the reasons why Secret Mage was such a bust in Saviors of Uldum was the deck’s tendency to run out of steam to quickly. Sayge is a direct response to this, and when played on curve, it shouldn’t be too uncommon to get 3-4 cards from him. The issue with this archetype is that it still lacks appropriate aggression (no good Turn 1-2 plays, not much in the way of mana cheating, etc.), which is why I don’t think it will see that much success, but it could possibly work out in the end.

    Paladin

    Carousel Gryphon: 3 Stars – Unlike most Corrupt cards, the initial card is fair for its cost (like Dalaran Crusader with one more health). The card is a little difficult to upgrade, and the corrupted version doesn’t blow me away, but the most promising thing about this card is surprisingly the Mech tag. With a big body like that, this could fit well into a N’Zoth Paladin deck.

    Day at the Faire: 1 Star – In an aggressive Silver Hand deck, you are going to be playing with a low curve. You cannot afford to be waiting around to draw the small number of 4/5 cost cards just so you can play this and get a decent benefit. This problem could be overlooked if the other Silver Hand cards were decent, but we’ll get to those in a minute.

    Redscale Dragontamer: 4 Stars – I can see multiple applications for this card. The first is N’Zoth Paladin, which will gladly take a minion with a Murloc Tag and can use it to draw Circus Amalgam or Amber Watcher. The second is in Murloc Paladin, where it can guarantee drawing those powerful Scalelords. At the end of the day, it’s a 2/3 that draws a card, and that’s pretty sweet.

    Balloon Merchant: 1 Star – This is a poor man’s Quartermaster. The lower attack is quite a disappointment considering how important it is for aggro decks to be able to burst down their opponents, and while the Divine Shield is supposed to compensate for the lack of health, the archetype needs ways to leverage the silver hand recruits into something threatening, and this card just isn’t that threatening.

    Carnival Barker: 1 Star – I actually like this card better than the OG Steward of Darkshire and wouldn’t be surprised if this saw play in, say, Odd Paladin in Wild. Unfortunately, this isn’t a Wild review, so I can just say that this card, while good, is stuck in an archetype which is nowhere near ready for competitive viability. Tragic.

    Snack Run: 1 StarFlash of Light saw play due to the high demand for card draw in Holy Wrath Paladin. This card discovers a spell instead, which is not a terrible tradeoff, but it’s not really what Paladin is looking for when choosing cards to actively put in its decks. In addition, it cannot heal minions, and will sometimes heal very little if the spell you want is cheap. Too often this will just be a Renew which costs an extra mana.

    Hammer of the Naaru: 3 Stars – Another pack filler/arena card which is thrust into competitive viability because of a tag. This is the only option N’Zoth has for a good-sized Elemental, and it comes with a strong weapon to boot.

    Oh My Yogg!: 1 Star – This is actually a really obnoxious effect. It’s kind of like a cheaper Counterspell, and in many cases it can actually be better. The problem is that Paladin does not have much in the way of secret synergy, and a decent 1-mana spell is just too fair to make it into decks.

    High Exarch Yrel: 3 Stars – Great card which fits into Pure Paladin extremely well, which is currently one of the best decks in the game. So why does this only get three stars? Because in a changing meta with powerful emergent decks which are adding new cards, High Exarch Yrel is literally the only card from the new expansion that Pure Paladin is interested in. Will the archetype be able to retain its dominant position in the meta by playing almost exactly as it did for the last four months? It’s not impossible, but I’d bet against it.

    Lothraxion the Redeemed: 1 Star – This is the absolute worst new card for an archetype I already had no faith in. It’s a 5-mana-do-nothing in a deck that wants to be aggressive. It’s a terrible draw in the endgame. It’s completely redundant with Balloon Merchant (Double divine shield? Hello?). It utterly fails to give me a reason to play Silver Hand Paladin when there are so many better new decks available.

    Priest

    Fairground Fool: 1 Star – Bundles of stats might be OK in other classes, but in Priest there just isn’t anything you can do with a 4/7 that comes down on Turn 5 at the earliest. Very slow and very underwhelming.

    Fortune Teller: 2 Stars Violet Spellsword is a rather weak card and this feels reminiscent of that. In order for Fortune Teller to be “worth it”, you need a minimum of 4, but preferably 5 or more spells, which isn’t too hard for Priest, but is it going to be consistent enough?

    Insight: 4 Stars – The card isn’t the strongest Corrupt card I’ve seen this set (although that title probably goes to another Priest card), but it’s quite good in Priest, which isn’t in a hurry to play this and appreciates the discount. This will be excellent with combo-based cards such as Sethekk Veilweaver, which can chain together lots of spells for a lot of value. Alternatively, you can play powerful win conditions like Murozond, the Infinite earlier. There are lots of great uses for this.

    Auspicious Spirits: 1 Star – This is a very long time to wait for what is likely just going to be a mediocre pile of stats. It is hard to think of a practical application for this, and I can’t see this as ever becoming more than pack filler.

    Nazmani Bloodweaver: 5 Stars – In the past we’ve seen that it isn’t hard for Sethekk Veilweaver to generate powerful chains of spells. This card does it even better, and because Priest already has access to a lot of strong cheap spells, this is a natural fit. But if only there was a way to make the chains even more consistent…

    Palm Reading: 5 Stars – Mana cheating is powerful, and Priest can afford to wait around to corrupt this. The class uses a lot of spells and will generally have enough in hand to make playing this worthwhile. As soon as you see this played, you better prepare for your opponent’s next turn to be extremely long and tilting as they play a ton of spells with their Veilweavers and Bloodweavers.

    Blood of G'huun: 3 Stars – The card itself is just OK. It’s slow, and while Resurrect Priest has minions which are good when summoned from Blood of G’huun, the fact that it happens at the end of your turn is a problem (something like, say, Catrina Muerte isn’t as scary when she’s summoned without resurrecting anything). This card alone isn’t going to bring back the Resurrect archetype, but unfortunately, it’s not alone.

    Idol of Y'Shaarj: 3 Stars – Boy, I hope I’m wrong about this one. As much as I want to call Idol of Y’Shaarj a one-star card, the fact of the matter is that Resurrect Priest has a shot of being viable in the new meta. Practically all of the cards in that deck are excellent with this, especially Blood of G'huun, so this could potentially be a meta-changer. Luckily, Resurrect Priest is something like a Tier 6 archetype at the moment, so we can all rest easy knowing the chances of it dominating the meta are slim.

    G'huun the Blood God: 4 Stars – Drawing two cards and being able to play them immediately is tempting, and Priest is the most equipped class to take the health blow. This could lead to some unfair Turn 8s, but it’s possible that the good value is offset by the drawback. Remember, Riftcleaver sees no play due to a similar drawback, so this might not be quite as insane as it looks.

    The Nameless One: 4 Stars – Silence, along with similar effects, have proven to be fantastic abilities in the current meta, as seen by the success of cards like Consume Magic and Devolving Missiles. If this were a Scholomance card, the correct rating would likely be 5 stars. The question is whether the high value of silence will continue on into the new meta. With the (likely) decline of Pure Paladin, the deck where silence performs the best, lI can’t say for certain that it will.

    Rogue

    Foxy Fraud: 5 Stars – Very strong card which highly incentivizes us to expand the “combo” packages in our deck. A free 3/2 is insane, especially when that free card can trigger the combo keyword. Rogue’s combo cards are already great, so it should be easy for us to find a place for this somewhere.

    Sweet Tooth: 4 Stars – Possibly one of the best Corrupt minions. It’s not too hard to discount since Aggro Rogue’s curve isn’t as low as other aggressive decks, and the payoff is quite insane: a two mana 5/2 with stealth is very difficult to say no to.

    Swindle: 4 Stars – 2-mana-draw-2 is quite a good deal, and the restriction is not very severe. In addition, Foxy Fraud can make fantastic use of this, allowing us to play it for free as early as turn 2. An excellent boost to Rogue already-great set of combo cards.

    Prize Plunderer: 3 Stars – It’s good with Foxy Fraud, but when it’s competing with combo cards that Rogue already has which are also good with Foxy Fraud, it might not be able to quite bring enough value. The payoff is especially sad when compared with cards like Edwin VanCleef.

    Shadow Clone: 4 Stars – Seems like a decent secret, possibly one of the best that Rogue has. Kind of like Mirror Entity but way better. Secret synergy is quite strong in Rogue, so the class will gladly take another one without complaining.

    Ticket Master: 4 Stars – Galakrond decks tend to have an obscene amount of card draw, which increases the reliability of drawing Plush Bears. If that’s not good enough, the class can also slot in Stowaway, which becomes a 5 mana 10/10 if this has been played beforehand. Any Rogue deck which isn’t some aggro-stealth deck should be able to make space for this.

    Cloak of Shadows: 2 StarsTime Out! was good, but it primarily saw play in combo decks which needed the stalling. Will Rogue have decks like that? Maybe, but probably not. The other problem with this card is that it doesn’t nullify untargeted damage, making it weak against decks like Face Hunter.

    Malevolent Strike: 5 Stars – It’s a one mana Assassinate in any deck which runs C’Thun with the potential to be discounted further via Ticket Master. This, more than any other card, is what pushes C’Thun into viability in Rogue. It’s almost like Secret Passage for Aggro Rogue in that it is the most instrumental for pushing the archetype.

    Grand Empress Shek'zara: 3 Stars – There’s a fair amount of luck needed to make this worth using. You’re not always going to discover a Plush Bear or a Shadow of Death, and Shek’zara is fairly mediocre if you whiff. I could see C’Thun Rogue cutting this entirely just based on the unreliability, but it’s possible that the highrolls are good enough regardless.

    Tenwu of the Red Smoke: 5 Stars – An autoinclude for any Galakrond Rogue deck. The synergy with Jandice, Togwaggle, Kronx, etc. is off the charts. You could even do something crazy like play a discounted Old God twice a turn with Tenwu. Possibly one of the best cards in the entire expansion.

    Shaman

    Cagematch Custodian: 4 Stars – Simple, yet important. Drawing weapons consistently will be crucial for any Aggro Shaman deck. Remember Rune Dagger in Aggro Shaman last expansion and how important it was to draw it or you were S.O.L? That deck was quite weak, but we might want to take another look at Rune Dagger with Cagematch Custodian around.

    Revolve: 5 Stars – Not only is this a more consistent Devolving Missiles, but it also has great synergy with any deck which runs Desert Hare. Will such a deck be viable? Even if it’s not, this is still a better version of a card which was great in the last expansion. A surefire success.

    Stormstrike: 4 Stars – Decent card which gets significantly better when taken into context with the rest of the Shaman set. Functions like Rockbiter Weapon with better tempo, which is great if you have Doomhammer equipped.

    Dunk Tank: 5 Stars – Phenomenal spell in what could be one of the top archetypes of Darkmoon Faire: Control Shaman. This deck has all the pieces for top-tier success except the most important one: it lacks a win condition. The Old Gods can provide the deck with the win condition it needs (my money’s on C’Thun, personally), and that means that this spell can shine in a great new upcoming archetype. Exciting!

    Pit Master: 1 Star – You may be noticing a recurring theme with Corrupt minions. A pile of stats is significantly less impressive when it cannot be played on curve, so the only ones which I expect to have any viability are ones with some extra effect as a selling point (such as the one in the next class).

    Whack-A-Gnoll Hammer: 2 Stars – This weapon is alright, but it’s not powerful enough to push the new archetype on its own and could even be cut from the deck. Handbuffing is a slow mechanic for an aggressive deck, even when it’s tied to a Fiery War Axe. Uninspiring, but may see play if there are no better options.

    Deathmatch Pavilion: 3 Stars – It’s not bad, but it would be better if Shaman had a 1-mana weapon, or a way to attack for free. It sucks that you’ll never be able to play this on curve, because if you could, it would be an excellent earlygame play that could be oppressive for your opponent. The card is still probably good enough to make the cut, but it’s not one of the better cards in Aggro Shaman for this reason.

    Magicfin: 1 Star – Murloc Shaman is a dead archetype, and it typically played very aggressively back in Rise of Shadows. With that in mind, would that deck have very much use for random legendaries, most of which are expensive and won’t be relevant until the game is already over? Absolutely not.

    Grand Totem Eys'or: 1 Star – Eys’or looks very strong, but this apparent strength may be misleading. Totem Shaman actually doesn’t run all that many “Totems” in their deck, instead running Totem generators like Tour Guide, Splitting Axe, etc. Thus, plopping it down on Turn 3 is a very weak play, and that means its only use may be as a board-wide buff for a field of totems. That’s alright, but that’s basically the only thing the archetype is getting, so will it be able to compete in the new meta with so little support? No, I don’t think so.

    Inara Stormcrash: 3 Stars – This card incentivizes us to run other weapons besides Doomhammer. That’s fine, but what are our options? We have Rune DaggerWhack-A-Gnoll Hammer hammer, and…Stormforged Axe? This can also combo with spells which generate attack, like Rockbiter Weapon, but these combos come fairly late for an Aggro Shaman deck (around Turn 7-8 at the earliest). Still, it’s hard to say “no” to a potential 10 damage to the face in one turn, so Inara shouldn’t be counted out entirely.

    Warlock

    Man'ari Mosher: 5 Stars – The biggest thing holding back Warlock currently is the lack of healing. This card is a fantastic answer to that problem: when used on any big demon, this card can heal for 8-11 in one blow, which can shut burn decks out of the game entirely. If only there was some way to get those demons on the board in a timely fashion…

    Midway Maniac: 2 Stars – This card should be extremely grateful that this set has such good Demon synergy. Otherwise, it would never be considered. It curves nicely into Man'ari Mosher in a pinch, and it helps increase the likelihood of getting the benefit from Free Admission. That’s about all it has going for it, but that just might be enough.

    Ring Matron: 3 Stars – Another Demon which seems like arena fodder but could make its way into a constructed deck due to the tag synergy. Dropping this on Turn 4 will be a lot of fun, and so will healing for 9 with Mosher.

    Fire Breather: 4 Stars – This is an extremely good card in Demon-centric decks. It’s almost like a Duskbreaker with better stats that only hits enemy minions, and Duskbreaker was a unbelievably broken card. I imagine this will make it into pretty much every single variant of Control Warlock.

    Free Admission: 5 Stars – Free Admission is bonkers. Card draw and mana manipulation are two of the best mechanics in the game, and the deckbuilding restriction for this isn’t even that strict (you can still slot in a few non-demon minions and still have about an 70-80% chance of activating the bonus). Even if you whiff, it’s still an Arcane Intellect, which is a viable constructed card. Yeah, I’m thinking Gul’dan’s back.

    Wicked Whispers: 1 Star Grim Rally with a better downside seems really good. Problem is, Grim Rally is designed for Zoo Warlock, so how good will that archetype be in this meta? After some theorycrafting, my estimation is “really  bad”. It also sucks that the card you want to pair this with, Boneweb Egg, conflicts heavily with Free Admission.

    Cascading Disaster: 4 Stars – A card with a decent baseline which becomes absurd when fully upgraded. Because it’s a board clear, you don’t mind this sitting in your hand until the time you need it, and your deck should have good expensive cards that can help it along.

    Revenant Rascal: 1 Star – An effective method of disruption for any aggressive Warlock deck. The problem is this: will there be any viable Warlock decks which want to go aggro? It’s unlikely, and control decks have better things to do than play a 3 mana 3/3.

    Deck of Chaos: 1 Star – So, I heard a rumor that Deck of Chaos was planned to be released several expansions ago, when Warlock was stronger, but they held off on it because it was apparently “too strong”. I got no idea if that’s true or not, but if it is, it explains why they did not print a single card which synergizes with this in this set. The only deck I could see interested in this is a combo deck with Malygos, but for that to work, you need to draw and play Deck of Chaos before drawing Malygos. Perhaps Quest Warlock will make a return? Doubtful.

    Tickatus: 5 Stars – Tickatus is an excellent win condition for Control Warlock. The deck has several good options for corrupting it, and when you do, you can copy it with Felosophy and mill ten cards from your opponent’s deck. If that’s not enough, you can play Y’Shaarj and do it again. Control Warlock appears to be one of the best archetypes in Scholomace Academy, and I expect that this card will be a key component in the deck. 

    Warrior

    Minefield: 4 Stars – Excellent earlygame removal if you have no minions on the board, which is common for Warrior. Control decks will be glad to pick this up. Alternatively, you can use it for its synergy with things like Bomb Wrangler and pop off that way.

    Stage Hand: 1 Star – A minor effect which doesn’t synergize with much that Warrior has. If you’re looking for a buff for something like Tomb Warden or Carnival Clown, you have better options than this.

    Sword Eater: 5 Stars – An absolute monster of a card; Sword Eater is simply not fairly statted for what you get. Excellent synergy with several different potential archetypes, such as Pirate Warrior or N’Zoth Warrior. However, even if those archetypes fall through, Sword Eater is such a great standalone that it will likely see play regardless.

    Bumper Car: 4 Stars – Not a bad card at all on its own, and it helps provide fodder for Playmaker and E.T.C., which is great. Parade Leader can also turn those small rushers into powerful removal tokens. Other than that, not much to say about it other than it’s a good piece to add to the upcoming deck.

    Feat of Strength: 3 Stars – Taunt Warrior received great synergies in Carnival Clown which could end up being a powerhouse in the class. This is great for the deck and turns the clowns into a win condition all on its own. If Taunt Warrior works, then this card will see play, but that’s not guaranteed so I’ll stick with a cowardly 3 as far as my rating goes.

    Stage Dive: 5 Stars – An excellent Corrupt card, especially when compared to may of the others. An attack handbuff is already quite impactful for Rush minions, but it becomes ridiculous when paired with cards like Playmaker and Scion of Ruin (and yes, I think the Galakrond package is worth running in a Rush Warrior deck). All you need to do is play a two mana card to reap the full benefits, so it’s hard to imagine passing up on this.

    Ringmaster's Baton: 3 Stars – N’Zoth Warrior doesn’t strike me as the greatest archetype in existence, but this card will help it along. It’s a good amount of handbuffs with a decent weapon to boot, and it can be tutored with Corsair Cache.

    Tent Trasher: 2 Stars – This card flat-out sucks. It’s hard to discount, it’s not particularly strong when you’ve taken the trouble to discount it (a 3 mana 5/5 with rush really isn’t anything gamebreaking), and it’s a mediocre minion to resurrect with N’Zoth. It may see some undeserved inclusion into N’Zoth Warrior just for the Dragon tag, but don’t be surprised if it gets cut.

    E.T.C., God of Metal: 5 Stars – An explosive finisher to Rush Warrior which is easy to combo due to its low cost and can potentially deal 8-12 face damage in a single turn. Darkmoon Faire has given E.T.C. plenty of small tokens to work with, so whenever you see this card come down, you can expect a lot of pain flying your way. Just a nutty ending to what could be a new top-tier archetype.

    Ringmaster Whatley: 4 Stars – 5-mana-draw-3 is good on its own, but adding a strong body along with it is just unfair. This card pushes the Menagerie archetype well, but it will need support in order to dominate, and if we look at the other cards that Warrior has received, none of them scream “busted” the same way this does. If the archetype works, Whatley will drag it across the finish line kicking and screaming, but if not, you can’t say he didn’t try his hardest to make it work.

    Neutral

    Banana Vendor: 2 Stars – It’s a phenomenal mill card, but will mill decks exist in the new meta? That’s unlikely, and if you’re just playing it for the bananas, I doubt it’s worth it since your opponent can make use of them too. Cyclone Mage ran Banana Buffoon back in the day, so perhaps this will be a fringe card in that deck.

    Circus Amalgam: 4 Stars – If any N’Zoth deck ends up working out well, this card will be in the deck. It’s a good body for the cost and its “amalgam” status means it can function as one of the tribes you don’t have in your deck (such as Totems: I doubt any N’Zoth decks are going to be running those). It also helps cards which rely on drawing specific tribes, such as Redscale Dragontamer and Ringmaster Whatley, find what they need.

    Circus Medic: 1 Star – The benefit from corrupting this is not worth the effort and I can think of a similar Darkmoon Faire neutral which takes this card’s role and does it better…

    Claw Machine: 3 Stars – N’Zoth decks will want to consider this. It is also the best target for Oblivitron aside from Darkmoon Tonk. These are basically the only two realistic avenues for this card to succeed.

    Costumed Entertainer: 1 Star – There’s just not enough good handbuff synergy to justify a 2 mana 1/2.

    Darkmoon Dirigible: 1 Star – Can’t imagine any deck making room for what looks like pack filler. No, I don’t think Playmaker cares about the synergy here.

    Darkmoon Statue: 3 Stars – You generally want to use this as a finisher, so we don’t mind waiting around for this to be corrupted. However, as far as finishers go, aggro decks might be able to do better than +1 attack to all minions.

    Fantastic Firebird: 1 Star – I’m not sure “fantastic” is the first word that came to mind when looking at this card.

    Fleethoof Pearltusk: 2 Stars – Looks mediocre but the Beast tag saves it from a 1. The corrupted form is excellent to resurrect with N’Zoth, and that could allow it to slide into some decks.

    Gyreworm: 4 Stars – This is a conditional Flanking Strike at 3 mana. That’s certainly something which any deck which runs elementals will want to look at, and I can easily see this working in a Mage deck.

    Inconspicuous Rider: 3 Stars – This card is at its most powerful in Mage, but Mage’s secret synergy is mediocre at best. I don’t think it provides enough value to make the cut in either Rogue or Hunter because of how weak the body is.

    Knife Vendor: 4 Stars – Face decks will want to consider this. That’s a good body and damage output for the cost, and the drawback isn’t very serious unless you’re in an aggro mirror. So, it’s meta dependent, but in a control heavy meta with lots of Old God decks, Knife Vendor should do well.

    Optimistic Ogre: 1 Star – Haha, very cute, but no, a pile of stats with a downside is not good enough for constructed.

    Parade Leader: 3 Stars – The success of Parade Leader is entirely contingent on whether Rush Warrior works out, because that is the only new archetype which can generate tons of small Rush minions (aside from something stupid like Token Demon Hunter). I think Rush Warrior will be strong, but only time will tell.

    Prize Vendor: 3 StarsColdlight Oracle was certainly a great card, and even though this is weaker, it still provides a similar effect. Could see play, especially if any mill decks emerge.

    Rock Rager: 1 Star – Do I need to elaborate?

    Showstopper: 1 Star – Offensively, silence effects generally aren’t something you want to wait around for. If Silence Priest was viable, this could honestly work great, but alas.

    Strongman: 4 Stars – Looks like pack filler at first glance but could be good: The cost reduction basically means it acts as a tempo boost for any expensive play: It’s reminiscent of Anubisath Defender in that regard. The synergy with Y’Shaarj is also excellent, and so this should work well in any deck with that card.

    Wriggling Horror: 5 Stars – A great addition to any deck which can consistently flood the board early. Wriggling Horror is a phenomenal boost to aggro decks and certainly will be a powerful contender in the new meta.

    Derailed Coaster: 3 Stars – Similar to Parade Leader in that it will need Rush Warrior to be good in order to even have a shot. Fortunately, I have faith in the archetype.

    K'thir Ritualist: 1 Star – Even without the drawback, it’s underwhelming. With the drawback, it’s completely unplayable. There’s really not much that can be done here.

    Safety Inspector: 2 Stars – Might actually be a sleeper hit, though I’d bet against it. The awkward thing about this card is that it’s not particularly great as a Turn 1 play, but later in the game when you typically don’t want one-drops, this can swap your low-cost junk into something more impactful. Is that worth a slot? I doubt it, but it’s definitely a card to keep an eye on.

    Carnival Clown: 5 Stars – This card is utterly absurd in Druid. Simply put, it’s an incredible follow-up to Survival of the Fittest which singlehandedly turns it into a win condition in the deck. Warrior may also be able to harness it with Taunt Buffs, especially Armagedillo.

    Darkmoon Rabbit: 2 Stars – Decent removal, but it’s so expensive and a lot of good control decks will have better options than spending 10 whole mana just to clear 3 minions. I should probably give this a 1, but the synergy with Idol of Y’Shaarj intrigues me and makes me think it could be a fringe viable card.

    Horrendous Growth: 3 Stars – A good card for control decks to consider. It can be quite ridiculous after some time, but it is very weak if drawn near the end of the game, so its viability is questionable.

    C'Thun, the Shattered: 4 Stars – Very, very slow card which will need at least one of three things in order to work. Any deck which wants this needs to either: 1) tutor their Old God pieces 2) be able to quickly draw their entire deck, or 3) stall for ages. Galakrond Rogue can accomplish 1 and 2, while Control Shaman is the best deck in the game for 3. So, that’s two potentially powerful decks which are suited to make this into a strong meta contender.

    N'Zoth, God of the Deep: 3 Stars – Honestly, this is probably the weakest Old God, but it is by no means a bad card. Paladin and Warrior are potentially the decks which are most likely to use this with success, but neither of those theorycrafts looks like a top-tier deck. Still, we could see Druid or Hunter making something out of this, so who knows how strong it will end up when all is said and done.

    Silas Darkmoon: 1 Star – Some people have been trying out combos with Silas, and right now those decks are all very weak. It may be possible that some new combo will emerge, but right now this is looking like a 7 mana Treachery, and that’s pretty abysmal.

    Yogg-Saron, Master of Fate: 5 Stars – I’m quite pleased with the classes that utilize Yogg as a win condition, such as Mage, Druid, and Priest, and it will certainly be surprising if Yogg doesn’t work out. I should add the caveat that due to the variability of Yogg’s outcomes, he’s not a card you can plop down at anytime and expect it to work out, so there is a situational aspect to his strength.

    Y'Shaarj, the Defiler: 4 Stars – Some may be tempted to dismiss this as the worst Old God, but I can see good applications for it in Warlock, Druid, and Warrior. There are a few corrupted cards like Carnival Clown and Strongman which singlehandedly push this into competitive viability, and in Warlock I love the prospect of getting back a free Tickatus. Just a great value generator which will be scary for control decks to handle.

     

    Posted in: General Discussion
  • 1

    posted a message on Epic Tier List & Crafting Guide

    All the new cards have now been placed. Soon I will update the placement of cards from older expansions.

    Posted in: Card Discussion
  • 0

    posted a message on Epic Tier List & Crafting Guide

    The new epics have been added to the list. Most of them are currently awaiting placement, but a few standouts have already been tiered.

    Posted in: Card Discussion
  • 0

    posted a message on The Exhaustive Scholomance Academy Card Preview
    Quote from Inzan1ty >>

    Meanwhile Instructor Fireheart and Lorekeeper Polkelt are easily two of the best

     How well did Instructor Fireheart turn out? Which of us was right about her?

    Posted in: General Discussion
  • 0

    posted a message on The Exhaustive Scholomance Academy Card Preview
    Quote from SummerWalker >>
    Quote from SCWT_FTW >>

    Stopped reading when Blood Herald was ranked as 3-stars. 

     Yeah that's defintely a 1 star

     Most people seem to think so, but I disagree. It's comparable to Corridor Creeper in that you only need to buff it 6+ times in order for it to be "worth it", which is very very easy to do in Token DH when you have cards which can summon absurd numbers of minions per turn. 

    Posted in: General Discussion
  • 2

    posted a message on Ben's Scholomanc Academy Set Review

    Thank you for taking the time to write this up. The main disagreements I would have is that I can't see Token DH as any worse than Tier 3. Ace Hunter Kreen is absolutely ridiculous with the Token set and he is so easy to combo with cards like Coordinated Strike, Trueaim Crescent, Command the Illidari, etc. that he really does wonders for the deck.

    Also, I will say that Spell Damage Mage seems incredibly schizophrenic. You have cards that fit well into control like Combustion and Brain Freeze, but then you have Mozaki who seems to encourage a lot of cheap burn spells? I don't know what this deck is trying to do exactly, although maybe you've theorycrafted an interesting idea that I haven't thought of.

     

    Posted in: Card Discussion
  • 0

    posted a message on The Exhaustive Scholomance Academy Card Preview
    Quote from Inzan1ty >>
    Quote from HoraceStapleton >>
    Quote from Inzan1ty >>

    Terrible ratings, dude. Already stopped reading at Star Student Stelina, which in reality is one of the worst Legendarys of the Set.

    Meanwhile Instructor Fireheart and Lorekeeper Polkelt are easily two of the best 

    Stelina is ridiculous. 4 mana to remove what is usually the best card in your opponent's hand and look at two of the others? Sign me up any day.

     Her effect ONLY goes off when its on the right or left most side, even then Glide is vastly superior. 

    Card wont ever see play in Tempo DH, you can quote me again in a week.

     Sure, Stelina is worse than Glide. Want to know what other Scholomance cards are worse than Glide? Almost all of them. Outcast isn't much of a problem considering how low the curve is in Tempo DH, and the effect is great. She'll see play.

    Posted in: General Discussion
  • 0

    posted a message on The Exhaustive Scholomance Academy Card Preview
    Quote from Inzan1ty >>

    Terrible ratings, dude. Already stopped reading at Star Student Stelina, which in reality is one of the worst Legendarys of the Set.

    Meanwhile Instructor Fireheart and Lorekeeper Polkelt are easily two of the best 

    Stelina is ridiculous. 4 mana to remove what is usually the best card in your opponent's hand and look at two of the others? Sign me up any day.

    Posted in: General Discussion
  • 6

    posted a message on The Exhaustive Scholomance Academy Card Preview

    Below I have written a guide detailing my predictions for the upcoming cards in the Scholomance Academy set. Similarly to Trump, I will be grading each card from 1 to 5 stars, meaning:

    5 Stars: Staple in a Tier 1 deck or a staple in multiple Tier 2 decks.
    4 Stars:  Occasionally used in a Tier 1 deck, a staple in a Tier 2 deck, or a staple in multiple Tier 3 decks.
    3 Stars: Occasionally used in a Tier 2 deck, a staple in a Tier 3 deck, or a staple in multiple Tier 4 decks
    2 Stars: Sees at least 1% of play in a Tier 4 deck or has seen some amount of tournament success.
    1 Star: Fails to maintain a 1% playrate in Diamond or above.

    I have tried to avoid watching other people's card reviews beforehand, so you can be confident that the opinions below are my own and not tainted by anyone else's perception. Enjoy.

    Demon Hunter

    Double Jump: 5 Stars – This card is very similar to Tracking from Hunter in that it does nothing but cycle and yet still works because it can give you an extremely important card that you can play immediately. Using it well will take some skill since it requires you to know what Outcast cards are still in your deck and whether or not playing Double Jump is worth the risk. A powerful, yet well designed card.

    Fel Guardians: 3 Stars – A welcome boost for Token Demon Hunter, albeit not one which makes or breaks the archetype. Tokens will probably be able to scrape into Tier 3 this expansion, which isn’t great but is certainly much better than where they were before Scholomance.

    Marrowslicer: 5 Stars – A strong weapon which entices us to run a Soul Fragment deck. I think this package will fit in nicely with Aggro Demon Hunter, even if not all of the soul fragment cards are geared towards aggression.

    Soulshard Lapidary: 5 Stars – That’s a lot of attack. You can think of this card like a cheaper Blazecaller that also synergizes with all the Demon Hunter cards which improve based on your hero’s attack. It is dependent on drawing those Soul Fragment generation cards, but you’ll have six of them in your deck, so the bonus should be fairly consistent.

    Vilefiend Trainer: 2 Stars – A little bit too fair; even when outcasted, the benefit just isn’t very impressive. However, Token Demon Hunter may pick this up as a necessary evil, so all is not lost.

    Cycle of Hatred: 1 Star – This goes into the pile of “strong board clears that won’t see play due to Control Demon Hunter lacking a good win condition”. Unless Malicia can provide that win condition (and IMO she’s better in aggro), this won’t be the powerhouse that it looks like at first glance.

    Glide: 5 Stars – Functions extremely well in Aggro Demon Hunter, which is already a powerful deck which appreciates the ability to refill. Decks with more expensive cards might also want to try this, since the card is strong even without the ability to mess with your opponent’s hand. The word “auto-include” is wildly overused, but in this case it is completely warranted.

    Magehunter: 1 Star – Very interesting tech card, but this meta is likely not going to be one where Magehunter is in demand. Sure, you’ll see some deathrattles and buffs on occasion, but not frequently enough for this to be relevant.

    Shardshatter Mystic: 3 Stars – This is obviously a very strong card, but Aggro Demon Hunter isn’t looking for board clears. Rather, it tries to take control of the board early on and then build from there, which is the opposite of what Shardshatter Mystic does. Control Demon Hunter doesn’t look like it’s going to get much better, so this card will probably not make the cut (but it will see experimentation).

    Ancient Void Hound: 1 Star – Big Demon Hunter is very far from playable, and on its own, this card is far too slow. It’s a step in the right direction, but the archetype needs more than this.

    Star Student Stelina: 5 Stars – This card could be one of the most powerful in the set. It has the potential to immediately disrupt the opponent’s response to your turn, which means that if you are ahead when playing Stelina, you will likely stay ahead. That’s huge for aggressive decks like Aggro Demon Hunter which rely on solidifying the earlygame. Stelina’s going to be as annoying as she looks.

    Druid

    Gibberling: 4 Stars – If there’s one class which is well equipped to take advantage of this, it’s Druid. The class has tons of cheap spells which manipulate mana, so an early highroll with this card isn’t that hard to achieve. Token Druid is not the greatest deck in Standard right now, but I suspect this card will be an important tool in reviving it.

    Nature Studies: 5 Stars – Even if every new Druid archetype turns out to be a bust, this card will still see play because the Exotic Mountseller decks will be interested in this. Beyond that, cards like Gibbering encourage Druid to run cheap spells in decks which otherwise might not be interested (such as Token Druid). The card only fails is if Druid is unplayable, and that looks pretty unlikely.

    Partner Assignment: 1 Star – 1 mana to generate 2 cards is not a bad deal, and Beast Druid will need every earlygame card it can get its hands on. Unfortunately, such a deck is likely to be mediocre, but if it succeeds, this card will be a staple in the archetype.

    Twilight Runner: 2 Stars – Absolutely insane when compared to Stranglethorn Tiger; this card is the definition of pushing an archetype. This gets a higher rating than most of the Beast Druid cards because there’s a good chance it will at least be tried out in other decks.

    Survival of the Fittest: 3 Stars – The main problem with this card is the absurd cost, which combined with the lack of an immediate board impact makes it tricky to work with. This means we will have to find some way to cheat it out for it to ever work. Fortunately, the next card down should help us achieve that goal without too much trouble.

    Forest Warden Omu: 5 Stars – The most obvious application of this card is pretty straightforward: pair it with a cheap spell to get a “free” 5/4 on the board. That’s pretty good on its own, but where I think this card starts to break the game is when paired with Germination. The ability to refresh your mana crystals twice will essentially give you up to 30 mana to work with in a single turn. Now, meme cards like Survival of the Fittest seem like viable options to put into your deck. It will be immensely heartbreaking if this card is ever nerfed to 7 mana, but to be honest, that might end up becoming necessary.

    Hunter

    Carrion Studies: 1 Star – A Deathrattle Hunter deck could work, but this card will not see play in it. There are too many undesirable deathrattles that can be discovered for this to be worth the card slot.

    Wolpertinger: 4 Stars Alleycat was easily the best card in the MSoG Hunter set, and this is a strictly better version of it. Hunter has strong handbuff synergies available to the class, but even if they don’t work out, this will probably at least end up as a filler card in Highlander Hunter.

    Bloated Python: 4 Stars – One of the reasons Beast/Deathrattle Hunter failed in AoO was because there simply weren’t enough strong deathrattles for Mok'Nathal Lion to abuse. This, however, is the strongest deathrattle that Hunter has available to it, and it also curves very nicely into the lion. Perhaps it’s time to take a second look at the AoO beasts which didn’t see play before.

    Overwhelm: 4 Stars – Strong removal card even if you only have one beast on the board. Will likely see play in most variants of Beast Hunter and might even make the cut in Highlander.

    Krolusk Barkstripper: 1 Star – When I theorycrafted a Beast Hunter deck, this is one of the cards that didn’t make the cut. Deadly Shot has long since stopped seeing play, and I don’t think the extra cost along with the hassle of triggering Spellburst is made up for by the large body.

    Professor Slate: 2 Stars – This card is absolutely insane with Rapid Fire, but unfortunately Hunter is not really a removal class and the Slate/Rapid Fire package will likely be overshadowed by the other things Hunter can do. This gets a 2-star rating because I believe it will see some experimentation in Highlander Hunter before eventually being cut.

    Mage

    Firebrand: 3 Stars – Nothing too exiting, but an all-around decent card which Highlander Mage can use. Due to its low cost (and the availability of cheap spells in Mage) the Spellburst should be relatively easy to activate.

    Lab Partner: 3 Stars – When looking at all the spell damage cards, it is unlikely that a pure “Spell Damage Mage” deck will be good enough to see serious competitive play. Despite that, this is still a strong one-drop that should be included in Highlander Mage.

    Cram Session: 1 Star – Whether or not a card succeeds in Highlander Mage is typically dependent on how well the card can stand on its own. Cram Session completely fails in this regard, and adding a large “spell-damage” package to the deck to justify running the card is sadly not going to be worth it.

    Wyrm Weaver: 2 Stars – At a higher cost, Spellburst is more difficult to wield effectively as opposed to Firebrand. Highlander Mage is also not a deck known for repeatedly casting a large number of spells in one turn. I don’t predict this card making it past the experimentation phase.

    Combustion: 4 Stars: – Strong card which can justify its inclusion into Highlander Mage with just a few spell-damage based cards. It won’t be in every variant of the deck, but it will see a fair amount of use.

    Mozaki, Master Duelist: 1 Star – Pretty unimpressive. It requires several spells in order to get decent value from the effect, and even then, your opponent can just kill it the next turn. Too slow, too clunky, and too weak to ever be a serious consideration.

    Paladin

    First Day of School: 4 Stars – Pure Paladin suffers from a lack of good one-drops, but this should help solve that problem. There’s a good chance that at least one of the cards you get will be playable on Turn 1.

    Judicious Junior: 1 Star – Good arena card, but outclassed by Amber Watcher which costs less and gives the health faster.

    Blessing of Authority: 1 Star – Even though the buff is enormous, giving your opponent a whole turn to react to it severely limits this card’s utility. When Paladin has so many strong buffs available to it, it’s hard to see this one making it in.

    Goody Two-Shields: 3 Stars – The main trouble with this card is that Spellburst cannot be activated the same turn this is played, which means frequently this is just a 4/2 with Divine Shield. However, for 3 mana, that’s not so bad. This should sometimes make it into Pure Paladin.

    Argent Braggart: 5 Stars – The highest in the battlefield will typically have very high stats, especially with cheap buffs like Libram of Wisdom available. This card could be priced at 3 mana and it would still be fair. At 2 mana, it’s obscene.

    Turalyon, the Tenured: 1 Star – One of the worst removal options Paladin has in its arsenal. This will usually only kill one minion, and in that case you’re better off using literally anything else. It’s unbelievable how bad this is.

    Priest

    Draconic Studies: 1 Star – Priest’s Dragon synergy is mediocre; it’s only ever worked in Highlander Priest, which is a deck deep into Tier 4 currently. This expansion will do very little to make a Dragon Priest deck workable.

    Frazzled Freshman: 1 Star – When I first saw this card, I expected it to be extremely good. Upon closer inspection, Zoo Priest is not even close to viable and it is unlikely that Highlander Priest will make a comeback. This card is the definition of “stuck in the wrong class”.

    Initiation: 2 Stars – Galakrond Priest likes removal, so it will probably experiment with this card a bit. However, 4 damage for 6 mana is so atrociously weak that it is unlikely to survive to the final draft. You can think of this as a 6 mana 4/4 that deals 4 damage, which is so bad it makes Aeon Reaver look good.

    Power Word: Feast: 1 Star – So close, and yet so far. This curves very nicely into Frazzled Freshman and will make him difficult to deal with on Turn 2. The problem is that this card only works in Zoo Priest, a terrible archetype which has never seen any serious play.

    Cabal Acolyte: 4 Stars – Galakrond Priest is starved for turn 4 plays, and this isn’t a bad one. The Spellburst effect is very strong, and when paired with Gift of Luminance, this could be very hard for your opponent to deal with. 6 health also means that it is likely it will survive as a tempo play, which means it is safe to use on curve.

    Mindrender Illucia: 1 Star – The only reason Azalina saw play was because her effect was permanent. This card is only useful if your hand is close to empty, and if so, you’re probably losing the game and you’re going to need more than this to come back.

    Rogue

    Plagiarize: 1 Star – Rogue secrets have not recovered from the Hanar nerf and Plagiarize does very little to encourage us to bring them back. As a standalone, the card is far too weak, frequently giving us only one card that we don’t particularly want.

    Vulpera Toxinblade: 1 Star – After considering a “weapon rogue” deck, it looks vastly inferior to Galakrond, and will probably not even work as a package inside Galakrond decks. The benefit this card provides is marginal, and comboing it with something like Steeldancer is tricky because of how easy this card is to remove.

    Self-Sharpening Sword: 2 Stars – Could feasibly work as a decent standalone card despite its archetype being weak. The main problem, though, is that Rogue simply has better options available to it. It’s also horrendously weak to weapon removal (although it’s questionable how in-demand that will be).

    Shifty Sophomore: 4 Stars – Stealth Galakrond Rogue conspicuously lacks a four-drop, and this is exactly what the deck is looking for. The Spellburst ability is relatively weak, but that’s fine because Stealth ensures we will trigger it more consistently.

    Secret Passage: 4 Stars – An autoinclude in all forms of Galakrond Rogue, which I expect will be around Tier 2. Galakrond Rogue typically doesn’t run all of the possible invokes, so Secret Passage will be very helpful in finding the remaining ones before playing Galakrond. Future Rogue decks will also keep an eye on this card based on how useful it will be in aggro decks.

    Infiltrator Lilian: 4 Stars – Another good 4-drop that Stealth Galakrond Rogue can fit right in. The value is good for the cost, and Rogue wants all the good Stealth minions that it can get its hands on (hell, even Worgen Infiltrator saw play in some builds).

    Shaman

    Rune Dagger: 4 Stars – There are two directions to take a “spell damage Shaman” deck in. You can either fill it with burn spells and aggressive cards (like Arcane Watcher), or you can make a control deck. The burn variant will probably end up stronger than the control variant, and it will be very interested in this card to consistently proc Arcane Watcher on Turn 3.

    Tidal Wave: 1 Star – Control Shaman has powerful spells already, but it lacks a win condition, and this set hasn’t given Shaman an obvious one. This spell is good on its own (and even better with spell damage) but it does not fix the fundamental problem with Control Shaman, which is why it will fail.

    Diligent Notetaker: 3 Stars – Burn Shaman may want to consider this. Getting back another spell which can hit face could be very scary for your opponent. I’m not 100% sold on whether it’s worth it or not, but it’s definitely a possibility.

    Molten Blast: 4 Stars – This card fits into the Burn Shaman archetype well, and it can create a lot of small tokens for you to take advantage of via Storm's Wrath or Vessina. This is the main reason why a Spell Damage Shaman deck will be more interested in aggression than control.

    Totem Goliath: 5 Stars – Totem Shaman is already a decent deck, but it can struggle if it loses the earlygame. This is a very strong card for the midgame which curves nicely into Splitting Axe on the very next turn.

    Instructor Fireheart: 2 Stars – Not a terrible card, but it’s hard to imagine it fitting into any of the upcoming Shaman archetypes. The best I could imagine for Fireheart is for it to function as a refill option in the lategame, but that’s probably not worth a deck slot. This card could surprise me, though.

    Warlock

    Demonic Studies: 1 Star – Ultimately not worth a deck slot even if you are running a deck with some demon synergies. There are too many bad demons which can be discovered for this to be decent.

    School Spirits: 4 Stars – A Volcanic Potion with an upside is never a bad thing, and 2-health minions have been extremely prevalent in the meta recently (mainly thanks to Demon Hunter). Warlock’s Soul Fragment package seems to be geared more towards control, and the class already has many decent tools to do just that.

    Boneweb Egg: 3 Stars – The discard bonus doesn’t strike me as all that relevant, since most discard cards target the highest-cost card. However, this should still work out well in Zoolock, and I think that deck will be decent enough.

    Shadowlight Scholar: 4 Stars – Good value for the cost as it’s essentially a 3-mana Flanking Strike. Does the job of encouraging us to run the Soul Fragment package, although in my opinion it’s not as ridiculous as something like Soulshard Lapidary.

    Void Drinker: 4 Stars – A big body like this will be obnoxious for aggressive decks to punch through. Control Warlock decks may want to cut Abyssal Summoner for this (or run both).

    Archwitch Willow: 1 Star – Here’s an idea: how about we make the set’s legendary synergize with big demons, and then print not a single supporting card to back it up? The limited support given to this archetype in previous sets is not enough for Willow to work out in the upcoming meta. At least she’s good in Wild.

    Warrior

    Athletic Studies: 4 Stars – The ability to discount your next Rush minion is extremely useful, as we’ll see in a minute. Not an amazing card on its own, but another card in this set makes this worth running.

    In Formation!: 1 Star – The Taunt synergies that Warrior currently has are fairly weak and haven’t seen play since Uldum, and a mediocre “2 mana add 2 random cards” isn’t going to change that. There are too many weak Taunt minions in the game for this to be impactful enough.

    Reaper's Scythe: 5 Stars – Warrior is always looking for powerful weapons, and this is one of the strongest that the class will have. Spellburst works very nicely on a weapon because it becomes easier to activate, and having this up will discourage your opponent from playing their minions wide. Add in some of Warrior’s powerful synergies like Corsair Cache, Steeldancer, and Doctor Krastinov, and this card will be played in almost every serious Warrior deck.

    Troublemaker: 3 Star – Very scary card with the potential to snowball out of control if left alone. As soon as this is summoned, your opponent will need an immediate answer or they will be overwhelmed by all the minions this summons.

    Playmaker: 5 Stars – Ridiculously good with cards which have already proven to be very strong on their own, such as Restless Mummy. Reminiscent of pre-nerf Bloodsworn Mercenary in that decks will likely be built around abusing its powerful effect.

    Rattlegore: 1 Star – Fun meme card, but too slow by far to ever see play. It does nothing when played, it’s weak to silence, and it just isn’t strong enough to justify a deck slot.

     

    Demon Hunter/Hunter

    Blood Herald: 3 Stars – Despite its insane synergy with Swarm of Locusts, this will not bring Quest Hunter back from the dead. At least Token Demon Hunter can always use it.

    Demon Companion: 5 Stars – Will likely see play in Aggro Demon Hunter and as a 1-of in Highlander Hunter. Both those decks are currently Tier 1 and will probably remain so in the Scholomance meta.

    Trueaim Crescent: 3 Stars – Looks very strong, but Aggro Demon Hunter has weapons which are more in line with its game plan available to it. This will probably end up in Token Demon Hunter, a far weaker archetype. Hunter’s not really a token class, so I doubt it will see much play there either.

    Ace Hunter Kreen: 4 Stars – Token Demon Hunter is the most obvious place for this card, but this is getting a higher rating than the rest of the token-based cards because it is likely that Hunter decks will be able to make good use of it. At the very least, Highlander Hunter should consider adding Kreen to its arsenal.

    Druid/Shaman

    Lightning Bloom: 3 Stars – Pre-nerf Innervate with a significant downside. However, mana manipulation is so strong, and Druid in particular has so many cards which encourage this (such as Gibberling) that this card will probably make its way into some decks.

    Groundskeeper: 4 Stars – This card will probably see play in Druid purely based on its ability to provide survivability, which is something any deck looking to abuse Omu will want as much of as possible. Shaman, on the other hand, is too interested in aggression to seriously consider this.

    Runic Carvings: 5 Stars – A key component in both Token Druid and Totem Shaman, two decks which look to be among the strongest of their respective classes. Also very nice from a design perspective as an expensive “Choose One” spell which isn’t broken in Quest Druid. We will certainly see a lot of this in a few days.

    Speaker Gidra: 3 Stars – I can’t bring myself to rate such an economical removal card any lower, but it is a serious problem how clunky this card is. If you cast it with, say, a 4 cost spell, you’ve spent a two-card combo just to summon a cheaper Siamat. Druid will want some control tools so it will certainly consider this, but I wouldn’t be surprised if the final verdict is that Gidra just isn’t consistent enough.

    Hunter/Druid

    Adorable Infestation: 2 Stars – Not very impressive. 1-cost handbuffs have a history of not working out well, and ultimately I don’t think this card does enough to even make the cut in Beast Hunter.

    Teacher's Pet: 3 Stars – Druid does not have the tools to make this work, but Hunter loves seeing beasts with strong deathrattles. Teron Gorefiend and Mok’nathal Lion will both be very interested in this one, although it might end up being too slow for the class.

    Guardian Animals: 1 Star – This card is bait. Don’t fall for it. The deckbuilding restriction is so extreme (no beasts which are bad when summoned) that it’s unthinkable that this card could ever realistically work in either class.

    Shan'do Wildclaw: 4 Stars – This card is one of the major reasons why I’m optimistic about Beast Hunter’s chances of success. Most of Hunter’s beasts benefit greatly from a deckbuff, and so do Hunter’s card generation options (like Ramkahen Wildtamer and Hunting Party). I don’t think the “transform into a friendly Beast” option is quite as good, but there are some scenarios where it may be preferable.

    Mage/Rogue

    Wand Thief: 4 Stars – Simple, yet elegant. This is both one of the strongest one-drops available to Rogue and also an easy choice for Highlander Mage. It is a shame you can’t play it on Turn 1, but that’s a small price to pay.

    Brain Freeze: 1 Star – Whenever you intentionally damage a minion, you generally are doing so because you want to remove it that turn. This is why freezing and dealing damage have typically not worked out very well together. Despite this, the card can be viewed as a slightly worse Holy Smite, and those have seen play in the past, but there’s only so much space in Highlander Mage and I don’t think this makes the cut.

    Potion of Illusion: 3 Stars – While there might be some crazy combo decks out there that want to use this, it is unlikely that any of them will get past the experimentation phase. Alternatively, this could be used in Highlander Mage to get extra copies of Reno, Zephrys or other desirable minions. Realistically, that’s probably the only application for this card that will work out.

    Jandice Barov: 3 Stars – It’s always good to have a strong standalone card like this, but Highlander Mage is likely to be the only deck which uses it. Galakrond Rogue runs many minions which are synergistic and therefore will struggle to make space for this, but Mage should be able to fit it in without too much trouble.

    Paladin/Priest

    Wave of Apathy: 1 Star – Feeling pretty apathetic about this card myself. We’ve seen from history that cards which lower an enemy’s attack rarely see play, especially not when the effect isn’t permanent. Priest and Paladin both have better removal cards that they can use instead.

    Gift of Luminance: 4 Stars – Fantastic with Cult Acolyte, but otherwise not worth the effort. Fortunately, the synergy with Cult Acolyte is so strong that this card should see play regardless.

    Devout Pupil: 4 Stars – Will likely work out just fine in both classes. Paladin of course will add this to any deck which runs the Libram package, and Priest has a few cards like Renew and Apotheosis to make this worth considering.

    High Abbess Alura: 5 Stars – Very interesting card in that it is complete garbage in Priest and simultaneously broken in Paladin. Most of Priest’s spells are removal based, and therefore are horrendous with Alura. Paladin, however, has a ton of great buffs which it would happily cast for free with Alura. Imagine cheating out a Libram of Hope with this; now that’s just insanity.

    Priest/Warlock

    Raise Dead: 4 Stars – Getting two cards for free is great value, and the “downside” can actually come in handy with all of Warlock’s self-damage cards. With this, now we can play Diseased Vulture and Darkglare on curve. This should end up as a staple in Zoolock as a great refill option.

    Brittlebone Destroyer: 3 Stars – Unlike the other three cards, Priest can actually use this. The class has a lot of good, cheap healing spells (like Renew), and the value is great. I’m not sure if Warlock will be able to capitalize on it as much, but it depends on how good Control Warlock ends up.

    Flesh Giant: 4 Stars – Another crucial component in Zoolock which encourages us to run the self-damage package. This is a powerful tempo play that can come down as early as Turn 5 which will be a massive headache for our opponent to remove.

    Disciplinarian Gandling: 4 Stars – Atrocious in Priest, but in Warlock this could function as a capable replacement for Tekhan which functions well with non-lackey cards. This is the finisher that Zoolock needs to be great.

    Rogue/Warrior

    Cutting Class: 5 Stars – This card won’t see any play in Rogue, which has better card draw options, but in Warrior this is insane. Warrior has a lot of great weapons with 3 or more attack, like Wrenchcalibur or Reaper’s Scythe, and this can be easily discounted to 2 or less as a result.

    Coerce: 4 Stars – Looks pretty good. The combo effect isn’t too hard to achieve since you don’t frequently play removal cards on curve anyway, so 3 mana to destroy a minion ends up being a pretty good deal.

    Steeldancer: 4 Stars – This card is tricky to evaluate since you generally want to be summoning at least a 3-cost minon, which is tough to do on curve. However, I believe that Steeldancer still warrants inclusion even if you usually will have to wait until turn 5 or 6 to get a good effect. Still, it is a shame that Corsair Cache got nerfed; if it weren’t for that, this would get a 5-star rating.

    Doctor Krastinov: 5 StarsCaptain Greenskin saw quite a bit of play in Enrage Warrior, and this card is even better. Losing one attack for Rush is a winning trade, and Warrior has a lot of good cards which synergize with high weapon attack.

    Shaman/Mage

    Primordial Studies: 3 Stars – There are some fairly weak options that this card may saddle you with, but because Spell Damage is a mechanic which works well when combined with spells, the cost reduction is a strong point in the card’s favor. This will at the very least be tried out in Burn Shaman and may even end up as a staple.

    Trick Totem: 4 Stars – This set is adding a lot of spells to the “3-or-less” pool which are strong when randomly cast (such as the Studies cards), so the chances of getting a horrendous lowroll are not as high as one might expect. This will probably not see play in all variants of Totem Shaman, but will likely be used enough to warrant a 4.

    Devolving Missiles: 1 Star – A vastly inferior and less consistent version of Devolve, a tech card which probably would not see play in Standard today. You’re better off using actual removal spells to deal with your opponent’s minions.

    Ras Frostwhisper: 5 Stars – Remember how good Despicable Dreadlord was? Ras is an even better version of that. Burn Shaman will gladly run him because he can target face, and Highlander Mage will follow suit even if that deck doesn’t end up running many spell damage related cards.

    Warlock/Demon Hunter

    Spirit Jailer: 5 Stars – This is exactly the kind of card that Aggro Demon Hunter wants to run, and while it doesn’t quite follow the Control Warlock game plan, that deck will likely still run this. A must-have for all Soul Fragment decks.

    Soul Shear: 5 Stars – The inverse of Spirit Jailer: this card is good in Control but not so much in Aggro. Still gets the 5 star treatment since I believe both decks will run it.

    Felosophy: 2 Stars – The most likely scenario for this card is that Zoolock will test it out and subsequently be disappointed by it. There are so many better things both classes could be doing than giving a minor handbuff to their cards.

    Soulciologist Malicia: 5 Stars – The buildaround card for Soul Fragment decks which can easily fill the board and overwhelm your opponent. Alternatively, you can use it as a powerful removal card (which Warlock will be interested in). Soul Fragment decks will likely be very strong next expansion, and all of them will obviously run Malicia.

    Warrior/Paladin

    Shield of Honor: 4 Stars – Comparable to Rampage, and in some instances even better. This should frequently be used in Enrage Warrior considering how easy it is to procure damaged minions to buff.

    Commencement: 1 Star – Cool flavor, but Recruit decks are not even close to viable. There’s unfortunately no way something with this big of a deckbuilding restriction will ever work.

    Ceremonial Maul: 4 Stars – Spellburst is a great effect to have on weapons, and if you cast a spell which costs 3 or more, you’re essentially getting a discounted Arathi Weaponsmith. That’s a pretty good deal, and it doesn’t even take into account the potential to summon very large minions with expensive spells.

    Lord Barov: 5 Stars – Even if the effect is not as fast as you might like, this is still a 3 mana Twisting Nether. You can even damage your own Barov with cards like Sword and Board to get the effect immediately. Any deck which is even a little bit interested in board control will run this.


    Neutrals

    Animated Broomstick: 1 Star – Cute, but giving minions Rush just isn’t a very strong effect.

    Crimson Hothead: 1 Star – Not the worst card in the 1-star category, but the spellburst effect isn’t strong enough to justify running it.

    Desk Imp: 1 Star – Will join Snowflipper Penguin and Tinyfin Murloc in the “never saw play” menagerie.

    Divine Rager: 1 Star – Has there ever been a good card with “Rager” in its name?

    Fishy Flyer: 2 Stars – Playmaker might be interested in this, but otherwise not good enough.

    Intrepid Initiate: 3 Stars – Decent earlygame card, but reliant on casting cheap spells. Will see some niche play here and there.

    Lake Thresher: 1 Star – Did you get baited into building a deck around Guardian Animals? Well, here’s an even worse card which you might be interested in.

    Manafeeder Panthara: 2 Stars – This is a difficult card to rate. The effect is clearly powerful since the stats and effect are great for their cost. Unfortunately, it’s hard to picture a deck where this belongs. I don’t know, maybe someone out there will come up with somewhere interesting to put this

    Ogremancer: 4 Stars – Deceptively powerful card, especially in a meta where cheap spells are everywhere. Even if you only proc the effect once, the stats are still quite good for the cost.

    Onyx Magescribe: 1 Star – Spells are cool, but this card is very slow. Not a huge fan.

    Pen Flinger: 1 Star – Outclassed by Guardian Augmerchant.

    Plagued Protodrake: 1 Star – If Rattlegore is too slow, then this card certainly is.

    Smug Senior: 1 Star – Play a bad card to add another bad card to your hand. Sounds great.

    Sneaky Delinquent: 2 Stars – Not quite good enough for Galakrond Rogue, but close.

    Sorcerous Substitute: 4 Stars – A big bundle of stats is quite a nice cherry on top of Burn Shaman. I doubt Highlander Mage will pick it up since it's rather weak as a standalone. 

    Steward of Scrolls: 5 StarsAzure Drake which discovers a spell instead of drawing a card is pretty good. This should be a consideration in any deck which cares about Spell Damage (including Highlander Mage).

    Tour Guide: 1 Star – I always thought Water Boy would have seen play if it had been usable in Odd Paladin, and I guess Wild will show us if I was right. Too bad this review doesn’t take Wild into account.

    Wandmaker: 4 Stars – A cheaper Cobalt Spellkin with a slightly weaker effect. Cheap spells are in high demand, so this will likely make the cut.

    Wretched Tutor: 2 Stars – I could see some control decks picking this up since it is annoying for zoo/token decks to deal with. Still just a little bit too clunky in my opinion.

    Cult Neophyte: 1 Star – Very minor effect which at best is a slight annoyance for your opponent. It’s no Loatheb.

    Robes of Protection: 3 Stars – Now this could be extremely annoying. Zoo decks could make great use of protection for their minions, and while it doesn’t protect against AoE, most control decks run targeted spells and they will hate to see that they are useless against this.

    Voracious Reader: 5 Stars – So, Jeeves still sees some play in Wild, and this is a version of him which costs 2 mana and doesn’t refill your opponent’s hand? If your aggressive deck cares about card draw, this is a must-include for it.

    Educated Elekk: 1 Star – Shuffling cards into your deck is not a very strong effect, even if you get 2 or more good spells. In some cases, it can even be a negative if the spell does not synergize with your deck.

    Enchanted Cauldron: 1 Star – Not a bad card, but too random for any deck to actively seek this out.

    Transfer Student: 4 Stars – I’d rate this card 4 stars right now as it sees play in Highlander decks, but nothing else. I think it will be no better and no worse when the rest of the set arrives.

    Headmaster Kel'Thuzad: 5 Stars – I’ve seen some people say this card is too clunky to fit properly into control decks. Are you guys crazy? There are so many great spells which cost 5 or less that can kill multiple minions (Hagatha's Scheme, Ramming Speed, Dark Skies, Starfall, Rolling Fireball, etc.) and any deck which runs these will consider Kel’Thuzad. The combo between this and Hagatha's Scheme in particular is so strong that this might give Control Shaman the win condition it so desperately needs.  

    Keymaster Alabaster: 1 Star – This could have worked if we had things like Research Project or Naturalize in Standard, but sadly, we do not. Even though this gets one star, keep an eye on it, as all it needs is one cheap card that lets your opponent draw to be worth consideration.

    Lorekeeper Polkelt: 2 Stars – Cool effect, but I just don’t think it does quite enough to work out. Maybe some aggro decks could use this to stop themselves from drawing all their cheap cards in the endgame. I don’t really think so because aggro decks need cards which immediately fight for the board, and this card doesn’t do that.

    Sphere of Sapience: 4 Stars – Won’t work well in decks which require heavy synergies, but Highlander decks should appreciate the effect, especially considering how this could help their consistency problems.

    Vectus: 5 Stars – This should fit in very nicely in Beast Hunter, which uses a lot of deathrattles. Egg Warrior will also be very interested, considering how consistently the whelps will have the deathrattle of Serpent’s Egg.

     

    Posted in: General Discussion
  • 0

    posted a message on Legendary Tier List & Crafting Guide

    Speaking of Wild, I've been playing some OTK paladin with Auctionmaster Beardo and I'm convinced that the deck is pretty strong. I think it would be a good idea to move it up at least a tier (although personally I would put it in Tier 2).

    Posted in: Card Discussion
  • 0

    posted a message on Epic Tier List & Crafting Guide
    Quote from Ace100ace200 >>

    Is Darkest Hour still tier 1 after the nerfs? I have my doubts. (Wild ranking)

     Not as many people are playing Darkest Hour Warlock right now, so the card should move down, but it still displays a decent winrate. I moved it to Tier 2 for now; in the future, it may move down farther.

    Posted in: Card Discussion
  • 0

    posted a message on Epic Tier List & Crafting Guide

    The list has been updated for the most recent batch of nerfs:

    Skeletal Dragon Tier 1 to 3
    Marsh Hydra Tier 2 to 4
    Greyheart Sage Tier 2 to 1
    Underlight Angling Rod Tier 3 to 2
    Warmaul Challenger Tier 4 to 2
    Bladestorm Tier 5 to 2
    Flamereaper Tier 2 to 4
    Embiggen Tier 1 to 4
    Scion of Ruin Tier 1 to 5
    Toxic Reinforcements Tier 1 to 2
    Veiled Worshipper Tier 1 to 2
    Rolling Fireball Tier 2 to 1
    Cumulo-Maximus Tier 3 to 4
    Lightforged Crusader Tier 3 to 2
    Wyrmrest Purifier Tier 3 to 5
    Anubisath Defender Tier 1 to 2
    Plague of Death Tier 1 to 2
    Psychopomp Tier 1 to 3
    Crystal Merchant Tier 2 to 3
    Micro Mummy Tier 2 to 4
    Plague of Murlocs Tier 2 to 4
    Diseased Vulture Tier 3 to 4
    Splitting Axe Tier 5 to 3
    Batterhead Tier 1 to 4
    Magic Carpet Tier 2 to 3
    Omega Devastator Tier 2 to 3
    Power of Creation Tier 2 to 1
    Waggle Pick Tier 2 to 3
    Jumbo Imp Tier 3 to 5
    Wrenchcalibur Tier 3 to 2
    Unidentified Contract Tier 4 to 3
    Force of Nature Tier 1 to 2
    Mountain Giant moved to HoF
    Sea Giant Tier 1 to 2
    Doomhammer Tier 2 to 4
    Sword of Justice Tier 3 to 5
    Avenging Wrath Tier 4 to 3
    Cabal Shadow Priest Tier 4 to 3
    Icicle Tier 5 to 3

     

    Posted in: Card Discussion
  • 0

    posted a message on Epic Tier List & Crafting Guide

    Just finished placing the cards in the new set, as well as making changes to the wild section. Over the next few days, I will change the placements of cards from older expansions accordingly.

    Quote from Lanko >>

    Eye Beam can't be crafted, it's in the initiate set.

     That's true, but it's still useful to know how the initiate cards perform compared to the rest of the epics.

    Posted in: Card Discussion
  • 0

    posted a message on Epic Tier List & Crafting Guide

    The meta is still in a state of flux, but a few cards are obviously performing very well at the moment:

    Eye Beam to Tier 1
    Glowfly Swarm to Tier 1
    Bamboozle to Tier 1
    Skeletal Dragon to Tier 1
    Apexis Blast to Tier 1

    Posted in: Card Discussion
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