Just 3 days ago, Blizzard unveiled their first batch of new cards for Hearthstone fans to pour over. Now, as the week begins, more cards have become available as well as new mechanic that rewards players for summoning Elemental minions the turn before.
So without any more hesitation, let’s dive into the new cards!
With Keeper of Uldaman rotating out, Sunkeeper Tarim is the go to pick for setting minions’ attack and Attack and Health to 3. This legendary Paladin card sets ALL minions stats to 3/3, meaning players must avoid moments where Sunkeeper Tarim actually buffs an opponent's board of weaklings. This card is sign at the potential resurgence of control Paladin and is difficult to play around.
• This card rewards Paladin decks that feature a lot of small minions, but also invalidates any hand-buff style power ups you might be tempted to play.
• Once an opponent's big creatures are shrunk down, Sunkeeper Tarim’s 3/7 stats effectively covers three of the opponent's minions. However, most classes have a way to deal one damage, bringing it down to two.
• Decks are very likely to play creatures bigger than 3/3, so the tempo swing a well timed Sunkeeper Tarim can provide is devastating.
• Stand Against Darkness combo?
Yes, this is a Shaman minion that is a seven mana 4/4. Blizzard clearly has a sense of humor, but this card is no joke. Assuming you have an Elemental to play the turn before it, Stone Sentinel brings 8/10 worth of stats to the board, essentially playing a copy an elemental version of Feral Spirits for free.
• This card is weak to Flamestrike and other AoE damage as its stats are distributed across multiple minions.
• Playing this card without activated its Battlecry is not an option. If a deck won’t include a strong Elemental theme, it’s best to stay away from this card.
• Fire Elemental is the ideal card to play the turn before this one. With no overload cost and at 6 mana, this will surely become a popular sequence of tempo plays.
• One of the strongest creatures to pair with Evolve, as an 8 mana minion is always better than a 4/4.
Fire Fly, on the surface, looks like an underwhelming card. However, its Elemental typing and Battlecry reveal its true value: as an enabler for more powerful Elemental cards. Playing this on turn one may sometimes be a misplay, but even if you do, its Battlecry gives another opportunity to enable other cards later.
• Fire Fly, Coin, Flame Elemental is a possible turn 1 player that may have some uses depending on what other Elemental support cards are in the set.
• 2/4 stats spread across two mana is above average for minions, especially due to its advantageous typing.
• This has potential to be a decent arena card alongside classes that can deal 1 damage with their hero power.
Ozruk can get to obscene life totals in a deck built around him and, if an opponent doesn’t have unconditional removal it locks down the board easily. Blizzard developers claim to have routinely gotten Ozruk as high as 30 Health, which immediately brings to mind Crazed Alchemist OTK potential.
• It’s a good thing this is a neutral Legendary, as it significantly increases the chance it might see play. Priest OTK decks with Inner Fire might particularly enjoy running this card, for example.
• The Soggoth the Slitherer comparison must be made, as both minions are competing for the same slot. Soggoth rarely sees play, and maybe would argue that the unconditional spell immunity it brings is more useful than tons of life.
• Saving the previously mentioned Fire Fly for the turn before Ozruk will likely be the easiest way to activate this card to meaningful levels of toughness.
Additionally, as the expansion releases, the following cards will gain the new Elemental typing that allows them to enable cards like Ozruk.
Al’Akir the Windlord
Ragnaros the Firelord
Clutchmother Zavas (reverse Edwin Vancleef?) is the Legendary Warlock minion that every discard Zoolock player has been searching for. Keeping in theme with the archetype, you want to Discard Clutchmother as often as possible, as it returns to your hand and becomes more powerful each time!
• The Beast typing is a little random in Warlock but it does allow Clutchmother to be drawn on command with The Curator.
• Even if she never becomes discarded, a two mana 2/2 is still something an aggressive Zoolock deck would play on curve.
• Discarding this card just once in the early game makes it incredibly powerful. Even better than Totem Golem!
Flame Geyser will likely see play as Mage decks utilize direct damage spells better than almost any other class. While not as powerful as Frostbolt, Flame Geyser remains an effortless way to ensure the activation of stronger Elemental spells later in the game.
• Flame Geyser is a surprisingly effective tool against aggressive decks, as it can halt attacking minions on turn 2 while giving the mage something to do on turn 3 (Hero Power + Flame Elemental)
• Cheap damage spells like this one do wonders in tempo oriented mage decks, however with the rotation of Flamewaker in standard, that strategy might not be viable.
• We have yet to see all of the Elemental options Mage will be able to choose from, but the power of this card is directly linked to their existence.
Our exclusive card at InvenGlobal is all about the quick activation of the Priest legendary quest, Awaken the Makers. An exhaustive explanation and analysis of this card has already been made and I highly recommend you go read it. While Reno Jackson may have rotated out of standard, cards like Crystalline Oracle give Priest the unique opportunity to replicate the full-life-gain effect at a similar pace (with possibly more consistency)
Shadow Vision is, in my opinion, one of the most exciting spells revealed so far. While it looks like just another free-value card, it in actuality allows Priest the unique ability to ensure the use of a specific spell in your deck. This “tutor” effect (as it is known in TCGs) has, traditionally, been a powerful control and combo deck enabler.
For example, if a Priest deck only includes 6 vital spells, Shadow Visions effectively becomes an extra copy of each of them. This makes combo decks that require an exact sequence of spells more consistent and flexible. You can even use it to double-down on specific spells that get more powerful in mass. Mind Blast is an good example of a card that get’s much more powerful when it’s possible to play 4 of them.
• To ensure the most consistent use of this card, a Priest deck should only include 6 other spells.
• However, since it is possible to discover your second Shadow Visions (and have it replace the card you actually wanted) the most “technically” correct number of spells would be only 4 others. This scenario is likely only possible the most extreme of OTK Inner Fire decks.
• Priest already makes great use of Wild Pyromancer and this card makes it even more useful. It both triggers the damage effect and possibly discovers other spells that can keep the activations going.
• Being able to discover a tucked away Greater Healing Potion hints at the real potential of a fatigue Priest control deck.
Stay tuned for more card speculation and theorycrafting as the new cards are revealed. Journey to Un’Goro is scheduled to be released early April and it honestly seems like one of the most interesting expansions yet.
Just think of the remaining class legendary quests!
Warcraft 3 is my one true love and I will challenge anyone to a game of Super Smash Brothers Melee.