Hearthstone Scholomance Academy Spoilers Discussion
Hearthstone is bringing one of my favorite dungeons/content areas to their card game with the upcoming expansion: Scholomance Academy! You know what that means: It’s spoiler season! We’re going to cover as many of the Hearthstone Scholomance Academy spoilers as we humanly can, and what makes them interesting. We’ll break this up into classes, and below that, there will be the Dual Class cards.
What’s that you say? Dual Class cards? There’s going to be cards that will be available to a pair of classes, which will most definitely shake up Hearthstone like never before. Another very new feature to the game will be a card that changes effects based on what board you’re playing on: Transfer Student! Everyone who logs in before Oct. 20 will gain two free copies of this epic minion.
What sorts of new features are coming to the game? Like we said, 40 cards will be Dual Class, meaning two different classes can play them. We have a new keyword with Spellburst. This is an effect that triggers one time, upon casting a spell. Treat Spellburst like a delayed Battlecry. It procs once, when you cast a spell, not when you summon the creature. Studies are a new card theme that will Discover a card and reduce the cost of the next card played of that type. You can also expect some really exciting PVE content since that’s grown very popular in Hearthstone.
We aren’t new to Hearthstone spoilers, but we can’t wait to discuss these new cards. There’s also a bundle to pre-order, naturally! This bundle includes the following:
- 1 Random Golden Legendary
- 1 Kel’ Thuzad Card Back
- 1 Kel’ Thuzad Mage Hero
- Battlegrounds Perks
- 4 Arena Tickets
- 80 Scholomance Academy Packs
- 5 Golden Scholomance Academy Packs.
Honestly? They had me at Kel’ thuzad.
New Demon Hunter/Warlock Mechanic: Soul Fragments: A new mechanic is being introduced in Scholomance Academy, and it’s for Demon Hunter/Warlock. Soul Fragments are cards that are shuffled into your deck by a variety of cards. When you draw them, they heal your hero for two Health, which is neat. But what else can they do? There are cards that benefit from destroying these Soul Fragments, and that activates their True Power (™). You will, therefore, need to build your deck so that you can consistently pop these powers. There are three exclusive cards for Demon Hunter and Warlock for Soul Fragments.
Demon Hunter: Marrowslicer, Shardshatter Mystic, Soulshard Lapidary
Warlock: Void Drinker, Shadowlight Scholar, School Spirits
Dual Class: Spirit Jailer, Soul Shear, Soulciologist Malicia
We’ll be covering these cards in greater detail below, don’t you worry! This is a really cool mechanic, and the Soul Fragments are something tied closer to the MMO World of Warcraft. At least, for Warlocks anyway.
Cycle of Hatred (Rare, 7-Cost Spell): For 7 mana, you can completely wipe a board, and come out on top with more creatures than before! Cycle of Hatred deals 3 damage to all minions in play. As a result, you summon a 3/3 Spirit for every minion killed. This is a playable card with virtually no downside. You wear down the other player, or and use this to wipe the field. Even if your minions die too (as is likely), you refill your board completely, potentially. One of the downsides to board wipe is that you lose your aggressive options also. We play this, and solve that problem in one go!
Glide (Rare 4-Cost Spell): Hello! Are you, or someone you know tired of decks that always seem to have a perfect combo? Are you sick of seeing Handlock have 10 cards in hand, and there doesn’t seem to be an answer? Or are you dumping your whole hand and need some more cards? Then Glide is the card for you! It’s an incredibly powerful tech tool, that’s for sure. When cast, you shuffle your hand into your deck and draw 4 cards. If you happen to have only this as your card, you get 4 cards for nothing! On top of that, if it’s your Outcast card (Far Left/Right of your hand), your opponent does the same! It disrupts a lot of situations for absolutely zero effort. Especially decks that are big into drawing tons of cards. Just ruin that whole thing for them. It isn’t going to be very hard to dump your hand by turning 4 and cast it to ruin the game for the other player completely. This can help the other player if they cast their whole hand, so beware. You could completely throw the game that way if you give the other player 4 cards, and they’re aggro.
Star Student Stelina (Legendary 4-Cost Minion): Ready for another “hand disruption” card? That really seems like a strong theme in this expansion. You’ll see what I mean very soon. But Star Student Stelina only disrupts the other player’s hand if they are an Outcast – Your left/right-most card in hand. If she does, the 4/3 for 4 mana looks at 3 of your opponent’s cards. Then you shuffle one of those into their deck! This is way better if they only have 1-3 cards in hand. You could get lucky and obliterate a combo they need. If they Spellburst a card back to their hand and don’t cast it, simply use Stelina to shuffle that card off the player’s mortal coil. Since you can’t reorganize cards in your hand, it could be very easy to grab it and throw it back into their deck.
Magehunter (Rare 3-Cost Minion): Now, this is a card that can do something really neat, especially as a Rush minion. At first, it feels like a weaker version of Spellbreaker, but this minion Silences a minion anytime he attacks a minion. The downside is that they are only a ⅔ for 3. If you could manage to batter some 0 power minions that have powerful abilities, that could be nice. This is an okay card, but not OP by any stretch of the imagination. If you could keep it alive to use its power more than once, though, that would be nice. Though this could be a very anti-Elusive card, now that I think about it. I might have to change my stance on this card.
Marrowslicer (Common 4-cost Equipment – Weapon): I’m so glad this is a common, and not an Epic or Legendary. This makes it a mechanic that’s easy to get into your deck. Marrowslicer has a Battlecry that shuffles 2 Soul Fragments into your deck. As a 4 attack, 2 durability, it’s going to be in decks that aren’t even “Soul Fragment” decks. 4 damage is nothing to sneeze at. So this will be a 2-of in quite a few Demon Hunter decks.
Shardshatter Mystic (Rare 3-cost Minion): A 3/2 for 3? That’s not too bad. This is one of the new Soul Fragment cards, exclusive to Demon Hunter. When this comes into play, you can destroy a Soul Fragment in your deck. This makes her deal 3 damage to all other minions. I’m sort of torn on how I feel about this. I like it because Demon Hunter control is now possible, but this will also harm your other minions. It could be a great trigger for Deathrattle effects. So it’s a neat mechanic, but you can only trigger it if there are Soul Fragments in your deck.
Soulshard Lapidary (Common 5-cost Minion): A 5/5 for 5 is mediocre at best, but with Soul Fragments set up, this is a ferocious card. This card’s Battlecry Destroys a Soul Fragment. The result is that your hero gains +5 Attack this turn. So, if you have that new Marrowslicer? That’s 9 attack right off the bat. Or you could use it with Aldrachi Warblades, and gain 7 life! There’s a lot of possibilities here. Soulshard Lapidary gives you the power to aggro in a fun, late-game way in your Demon Hunter deck. It’s also a common, so it’s again, very easy to pick up. I feel it might get nerfed (its cost if nothing else), but I like this common.
Ancient Void Hound (Epic 9-cost Minion – Demon): I have some questions about this particular minion. Curious as to why it’s not a 10-cost, for example. I assume there’s a card it will have synergy with. Why is it a 10/10 default? It’s going to keep getting bigger. So, this is a 10/10 demon for 9 mana. At the end of your turn, it steals 1 Attack and Health from all enemy minions. So it will get bigger and stronger every turn. So is this the start of a Control DH deck? That draining 1 Health/Attack can kill minions too, so that’s even better. We just need a way to get him out faster. So, maybe Kael’thas? Either way, I love this card, but it’s really big. I wonder if it’s going to get nerfed down to a 9/9 or something. I like it. It’s ridiculous and gigantic.
Demon Companion (Rare 1-cost Spell): It’s frankly a better version of Animal Companion. It won’t have the same stats as Animal Companion, but it only costs 1 mana. It’s a 1-mana minion that will undoubtedly be 100% useful for the mana you invest in. It’s a nice, simple card with lots of upsides. Nothing wrong with that.
Vilefiend Trainer (Common 4-cost Minion): Here’s a much better minion than Blood Herald, in my opinion. They could work together I imagine. Vilefiend Trainer, for 4 mana is a 5/4, which gives you two 1/1 Demons, if it’s Outcast in your hand (Right/Left-most card in hand). We could use them as sacrificial pawns to summon Fel Guardians much faster at least. That summons 3 ½ Demons with Taunt, and cost 1 less whenever a friendly dies. So we could make that happen a lot faster, potentially.
Double Jump (Common 1-cost Spell): If this lets you pick the Outcast card, this is incredibly powerful. This could fetch you that turn 1 Skull of Gul’dan, making certain you can cast it perhaps on turn 3 with the right set up. This card will let you make use of your other, powerful Outcast cards (Glide, Star Student Stelina, and Skull of Gul’dan). This will put that card into your hand as an Outcast because it will be on the far right. If you have the mana to drop them immediately, it’s instant value. I love this card as common. It’s 100% going to see use in the Outcast-themed decks.
Nature Studies (Common 1-Cost Spell): From what we understand, Spell Druid’s not really in a good place in the meta right now. If we combine cards like this with Kael’ thas Sunstrider, it could help. We can imagine that as the spoilers continue for the Hearthstone Scholomance Academy expansion, we’ll see more love for Spell Druid. If this is anything to go by anyway. For 1 mana, we Discover a Spell, and our next spell costs 1 less. It doesn’t make the specific spell you Discovered cheaper, just whatever you cast next. You could do some janky things with this and Kael’ thas.
Survival of the Fittest (Epic, 10-Cost Spell): Well, Kael’ thas Druid is going to be very much a thing in 2020/2021. This is a 10-cost spell, and even with Druid’s insane amount of mana ramp, it’s still too slow. This is essentially a double Embiggen, only better. How do we play this faster? We run Kael’ thas, drop two 0/1 cost spells back to back, and then we cast Survival of the Fittest for free. what does this monstrous epic do? Give all minions in your deck, hand, and battlefield +4/+4. Yes, even your in-play creatures get buffed. It sounds like they were listening to too much Ace of Base. “Everyone, everywhere. . . dance, or fade out.” What a bonkers card with the right synergy.
Forest Warden Omu (Legendary 6-cost Minion): Oh goodness. This is going to be an auto-include in a lot of Druid decks. A 5/4 with Spellburst, whenever you cast a spell, you “Refresh your Mana Crystals.” Get all your spells out that give you empty Mana Crystals, drop him, and then cast a 0-cost! We have a lot of fun things to do with this! Innvervate and Bog Beam immediately come to mind. If we have at least 7 mana crystals, Bogbeam is a 0-cost. If we keep Omu in our hands as our only minion, we can drop Imprisoned Satyr, which will reduce his mana cost (Omu’s) down to 1 instead of 6. Then we dump our hand, cast Omu, cast one more spell, get all our mana back! Druid Revival is going to be really threatening in August, I can feel it in my bones.
Twilight Runner (Rare 5-cost Minion – Beast): I thought a card like this would be a dual-class for Druid/Hunter, but alas, this is a single-class card. But it’s a great one! Someone pointed out (and I agree) that you can do some really dirty things with this. Run Guardian Animals, use that to fetch this (or maybe two copies of it?). If the Twilight Runner survives, the next turn you get to draw 3 cards, with 4 in total with just this one creature. This minion has Stealth, and whenever it attacks, you draw 2 cards. It’s a 5/4, so you can use it to punish a weak creature with that sudden Rush courtesy of Guardian Animals. Oh yes, Twilight Runner is going to be a key component to winning games.
Partner Assignment (Rare 1-cost Spell): All the school puns/plays on words will be used in this expansion. May as well not let them go to waste! But for 1 mana, this is amazing on both turn 1 and turn 6. On turn 6 at least, you can play both cards you receive. This is a 1-mana spell, and you add a random 2-cost and 3-cost Beast to your hand. So you get cards you don’t run in your deck for fodder, or something wildly useful. I can see it used in the Spell Druid decks alongside Crystalsong Portal. Ramp up, drop the minions you gain, and then follow up with Crystalsong Portal to gain 3 more minions to your hand. I like this card, especially as a 1-mana option. It guarantees more creatures, which is great if you aren’t running them in the first place (or if you just need something to hold the other player off with).
Gibberling (Common 1-cost Minion): This could be a sleeper OP card, under one condition. This is a 1/1 for 1, that has Spellburst: Summon a Gibberling. Provided the new Gibberling also has Spellburst: Summon a Gibberling, you can chain quite a lot of early minions out of it. Pair it with Innervate (0 Mana – Gain 1 Mana Crystal this turn only) and Nature Studies (1 Mana – Discover a spell, your next costs 1 less). In a perfect world, we can flood the board with Gibberlings, via Gibberling, Lightning Bloom, Gibberling, Nature Studies, and a 1 cost Discovered spell. Then we hit the other player for like 21 damage. In theory, this card could be filthily busted. Just wait for the Gibberling combos to come to life. They’re coming.
Professor Slate (Legendary 3-cost Minion): On paper, this card is amazing. But Hunters, from what I understand, do not have a lot of ways to take advantage of this (yet). We’ll have to see what the rest of the expansion offers. Maybe this will see more play in Wild. A ¾ for 3, this legendary makes all of your spells Poisonous. So your damage spells will kill immediately! In theory, this is going to be a lot of fun to use. I can see jank decks using this and finding ways to make it annoying to deal with. The downside is that it’s legendary, and you can only use one per deck. Since they aren’t a beast, you can’t seek them out quite as easy. But I like the idea! I like where Blizzard’s developer’s heads are at.
Krolusk Barkstripper (Epic 4-cost Minion – Beast): What a fantastic way to add minion destruction out of nowhere! A ⅗ for 4 as a Beast is already pretty amazing. He has Spellburst too. When you cast your next spell, you destroy a random enemy minion. We can pair this with several cards to destroy a minion, then get a second one (perhaps we can get them down to 1 minion and guarantee removal of something very powerful). Will we see control Hunter this year? Perhaps!
Bloated Python (Rare 3-cost Minion – Beast): Here’s a fun Deathrattle/Egg card! It’s even useful out of the box because, unlike many “Egg” cards, it has attack power. Eggs are cards that, when they die, bring another minion to life. In this case, when the ½ Beast dies, Deathrattle triggers, and we summon a 4/4 Hapless Handler. It’s a decent card. Not wildly overpowered, not ridiculous, but useful as a 3-drop (though we can lower its cost with Carrion Studies).
Overwhelm (Rare 1-cost Spell): Overwhelm is a card designed for Swarm decks. We hit the board with a bunch of Beasts and then spend 1 mana. This deals 2 damage a minion, then 1 more damage for each Beast we control. The more cards I see, the more possibility that I think Hunter will have a fun, annoying control deck.
Carrion Studies (Common 1-cost Spell): We spoke about this card recently, so here’s what it does! It’s in the line of “Studies” cards that let you Discover a card with certain requirements behind them. Carrion Studies enables you to Discover a Deathrattle minion, and your next one you cast costs 1 mana less. We could, in theory, drop a Bloated Python for 2 mana instead of 3. That makes it way more useful. It’s not an amazing card, but each class has one like it, so this card style will perform decently, no matter what class you’re playing.
Combustion (Epic 3-Cost Spell): Now, this is a fun-looking card. Combustion takes me back to my days of playing a Fire Mage in World of Warcraft. But what does it do? For 3 mana, you deal 4 damage to any minion. The excess damage goes to both neighbors. This is a fantastic updated version of Rolling Fireball and remember: +spelldamage is very much a thing in Mage. There’s also the new legendary Headmaster Kel’ thuzad to consider. He has a Spellburst effect: If the spell destroys any minions, summon them. We get Kel’ thuzad into play, and Combustion a weak minion, destroying it and the minions to its side. Now we have those minions in play! Is your opponent playing Elusive nonsense? Target the stuff next to it and profit!
Mozaki, Master Duelist (Legendary 5-Cost Minion): When you combine this with Sorcerer’s Apprentice, you have a very horrifying precedent. The Apprentice lowers your spell cost by 1 mana, and doesn’t set a limit. You can have your spells cost 0. Then you play Mozaki, Master Duelist. After you cast a spell, you gain +1 Spell Damage. It’s not until end of turn, either! It looks like it stacks. With a good hand, you can make your spells do outrageous damage quite out of nowhere. Spell Mage could very much be a thing in the coming year. I don’t know that it’s going to be a tier 1 deck, but Mozaki is a ⅜ for 5, so she’s very durable. Play her when you have a hand full of cheap spells. Then it becomes a matter of prioritizing what order you play them in to maximize your damage. Oh, I love Mozaki, Master Duelist. Go Troll Mage representation!
Lab Partner (Common 1-cost Minion): This card is going to see a nerf in a few weeks, you watch. A 1-drop that is a ⅓, and it gives Spell Damage +1? Ras Frostwhisper is going to love you, little buddy. Mage is looking like it’s going to be mighty and strong in the coming year. This is easily, far and away, no question a 5/5! Amazing stats, a great upside, it’s common, and it’s a 1-cost?! How is this even a thing? I mean, I’m glad because I love Mage. On the other hand, I’m going to see this on the other side of the table, and I’m very sad.
Cram Session (Rare 2-cost Spell): A card draw spell that increases in power/usefulness with Spell Damage? This is a card that will reap serious benefits the more you’ve increased your Spell Damage. So, for 2 mana you draw 1 card, but for each point of +Spell Damage you’ve accrued, you draw more cards. So, we drop Incanter’s Flow to reduce the spells in our deck by 1, then cast this for 1 instead. We have a bunch of ways to increase our Spell Damage too, so it’s not like it will be hard to refill our hand after dumping all our spells. This is a wonderful card, and I think it’s going to see a decent amount of play.
Wyrm Weaver (Rare 5-cost Minion): Eh, it’s an okay card. This is a “Meh. I’d probably try running it” style of card. It’s useful, at least, to create some defense for you on the board. We have a 5-cost minion that is a 3/6, and Spellburst. After you cast your next spell, you summon two ⅓ Mana Wyrms. So they aren’t amazing and don’t improve your combat. It is useful to have two creatures with 3 healthy though suddenly. They can take a little bit of a beating, or potential erase a threat with careful planning. It’s an okay card, all together. Not great, not bad.
Firebrand (Common 3-cost Minion): Some more unenlightened people have said this is a “balanced Flamewalker,” which immediately makes it bad. Nothing could be further from the truth! It’s a ¾ for 3 with a wicked Spellburst. It deals 4 damage randomly split among all enemy minions. It’s just 4 damage though, right? Consider +Spell Damage! If you have a few of those creatures on board and have been inflating your Spell Damage constantly, this could completely nuke an entire playfield. It’s evil, in the right situation. Couple that with it only costing 3 mana, you could easily throw a 0-cost spell right behind it and get some serious damage.
Goody Two-Shields (Rare 3-Cost Minion): Honestly, this is just a great little meme of a card. He’s a 4/2 with Divine Shield for 3 mana, which is honestly already pretty good. This will slot nicely into quite a few Paladin decks. He also has a Spellburst effect. When we cast our next spell, Goody Two-Shields gains Divine Shield! We attack with him, lose the initial shield, then cast a spell to get it back! A 4/2 for 3 with a Divine Shield is already bonkers, but to get it back a second time? With great timing, you can make this an absolute beast in your mid-game/aggro decks.
First Day of School (Common 0-Cost Spell): Honestly? This might go incredible with Goody Two-Shields. Attack with him for 3 mana, drop your 0-cost spell and reap the rewards. This card gives you 2 random 1-cost minions to go in your hand. It could be anything, but having more bodies will be nice. It could also synergize with your deck, no less. I would run this in a Spellburst deck, just to have a 0-cost trigger. Plus it guarantees you’ll get some 1-drops for your deck!
Professor Turalyon (Legendary 8-Cost Minion): If this weren’t an 8-cost, I’d be in love with it. Though admittedly, if it weren’t an 8-cost, it would be frightfully overpowered. So, let’s discuss Professor Turalyon. A 3/12 with Rush, whenever he attacks a minion, their Attack/Health gets changed to 3/3. This means we’re going to kill that minion almost no matter what. You know, except for things like Divine Shield pending. It’s a neat card and is amazing at dealing with any late-game threat you care to. Of course, bear in mind that he can’t evade Taunt. He still has to target those first. But Professor Turalyon is the answer to a lot of decks’ big game-winning creature. I can see him being slotted into a variety of Paladin decks. He’s certainly got a lot of promise.
Argent Braggart (Epic 2-cost Minion): A 1/1 for 2, and an Epic? Well, that sounds like pure rubbish. Thankfully, that’s not the case! Argent Braggart has a pretty awesome Battlecry, and it synergizes well with Turalyon, the Tenured. This combo is a response to the other player having a gigantic monster. Argent Braggart gains the Attack and Health to match the highest on the battlefield. It’s great for your big creatures, but consider this: Play Argent Braggart after Turaylon. Now Braggart becomes the Attack/Health of the biggest minion on the field (the other player has it). Then swing on them with Turalyon, it becomes a 3/3, and gets killed by Turaylon! Now you have the mightiest monster on the battlefield, for a measly two mana.
Frazzled Freshman (Common 1-Cost Minion): Honestly, not a lot to say about this. It’s a ¼ for 1, so it has a lot of value in simply being a high-health minion. Downside: It has no abilities or synergies. It’s a neat card. I can still see it being played.
Cabal Acolyte (Epic 4-Cost Minion): A 2/6 Taunt for 4 mana is already really great, but it has a fantastic Spellburst on top of that. When we cast our next spell, we gain control of a random enemy minion with 2 or less Attack. It’s not absolutely busted. I like the idea of this in a mirror match, where we steal the other player’s Cabal Acolyte and proc yet another Spellburst. This is a very solid card, without being wildly overpowered. We can take a key, low-cost unit, but it’s a shame we have no control over what we steal. Perhaps that would be busted and too strong. I think this card is right where it needs to be. I don’t think it’s a must-play, but I really like it regardless.
Mindrender Illucia (Legendary 2-cost Minion): Okay, I love this card. Even if it’s probably not going to see use outside of meme nonsense, and janky builds (or Wild). This will pay big dividends if the other player has a much better deck than you, and you could beat them with their cards. For 2 mana, Mindrender Illucia has you swap hands and decks with your opponent until your next turn. You keep your board/equipment! So you empty your hand, swap hands, use their cards, and then use them again. Even if it’s not amazing, I think it would be fun and frustrating at the same time.
Initiation (Rare 6-cost Spell): Initiation is a solid “maybe” for me. I love what it does, but it’s essentially a higher-cost Holy Water. This spell deals 4 damage to a minion, and if it kills it, you summon a new copy. There’s a ton of potential there. You can use it on a minion you own that’s weak, and has a Deathrattle that you’d like to trigger. Conversely, you could kill your opponent’s prime and make a copy of it (or another powerful creature you managed to whittle down). The major downside is that it costs 6 mana! It’s going to be hard to curve this nicely into your deck. Very much a card I like in theory, and we’ll see if it matters in practice.
Infiltrator Lilian (Legendary 4-Cost Minion): It’s the second Legendary I’ve seen so far! This is a 4/2 Stealth for 4, who also has a fun Deathrattle. When she dies, you summon a 4/2 Forsaken Liliana that attacks a random enemy. Honestly, for a legendary, this is pretty underwhelming. Unless there’s going to be some kind of effect for Rogues/Neutrals later that makes Deathrattle more impactful? Maybe double triggers or something? I can see it going into Rogue decks based on its casting cost and an extra attack, but I’m still fairly underwhelmed. Not every legendary has to be a god-breaker, but when so many are so OP, I can see why people aren’t impressed.
Secret Passage (Epic 1-Cost Spell): What an absolutely filthy card. This only costs one mana, and is an Epic, meaning you can have two of them in your deck. With Secret Passage, for just one mana, you replace your hand with 5 cards from your deck. Then you swap them back next turn! You could, in theory, dump your hand, pull a bunch of 0/1 cost cards, dump those too, and then swap back to whatever you didn’t, can’t use (which is nothing, because your hand is empty)! Or you could use this to get rid of a garbage hand for a turn and set up something that can use those cards. Drop fun minions, or perhaps, use this to set up a game-winning combo! I absolutely love how busted this card feels. In Wild meta, it’s going to be used to set up absolute nonsense too. With mid-game/late-game mana access, you can do so much here. I can’t wait to see the Rogue combos that come from it.
Self-Sharpening Sword (Rare 3-cost Equipment – Weapon): I like this in theory, but there are ultimately better options for Rogue weapons (say, through quests). But I like the idea of it as a card we use until we have that quest weapon. We can also use a few abilities/minions to increase our weapon stats. Self-Sharpening Sword is a ¼ weapon that gains +1 attack every time the Hero attacks. It’s yet another “okay’ card. We don’t need every card to be OP.
Coerce (Rare 3-cost Spell): While Self-Sharpening Sword is okay, Coerce is good. It destroys a damaged minion for 3 mana, and if you cast a spell before it, it triggers Combo. That Combo effect has you Destroy any minion so that you can do quite a bit with it. You can use it on your minion to trigger a Deathrattle effect, or you can just kill an enemy minion. The world is your oyster!
Shifty Sophomore (Rare 4-cost Minion): We’ve hit the point where the cards aren’t great, but they’re good and useful. A 4/4 Stealth minion for 4, and when you cast your next spell, you add a Combo spell to your hand! So, in theory, this could trigger something devastating, or at least very annoying. As long as you have the mana, you can do some pretty great stuff. Or you could use this to set up next-turn combos if you have enough excellent cards sitting around, but not enough mana for them.
Plagiarize (Common 2-cost Spell – Secret): A Secret card! Huzzah! It’s a pretty good one, too. At the end of your opponent’s turn, add copies of the cards they played to your hand. Make sure to drop this when you see your opponent load up with cards and think they’re going to lay down their combo. That way, you could potentially do the same thing to them! It’s not a game-breaker by any means. But it’s low-cost, you could combo something behind it, and it’s very disrespectful to borrow/steal your opponent’s cards. This is a double-edged sword! If your opponent figures it out and only plays one weak spell, you don’t profit. But that can also be good because you can go into crazy aggressive mode.
Vulpera Toxinblade (Common 3-cost Minion): Here’s an interesting card, especially if you’ve “acquired” or elsewise equipped a weapon. This is a 3/3 for 3 and gives your weapon +2 Attack. This isn’t an “until end of turn” ability either. If you can keep that weapon around by improving it, there will be tons of damage, even at an early point in the game. It probably won’t see a ton of use, but it’s still very neat.
Diligent Notetaker (Rare 2-Cost Minion): Now, this is a minion that I would run more than one of. The Diligent Notetaker is a ⅔ for 2, which is already pretty solid. But its Spellburst can make a major impact. When you cast your next spell, you return it to your hand! You essentially get to cast it again right away (or later if you want). Shaman Highlander, perhaps? You can use this on a variety of cards, like Haunting Visions (3-Cost Spell, which makes your next spell cost 3 less, and you Discover a spell)—lot of potential value in the Notetaker.
Totem Goliath (Epic 5-Cost Creature – Totem): Okay, so. I’m confused about how I feel about this card. It’s a bit high cost for what it does, first off. It does have an interesting Deathrattle: Summon all four basic Totems. But it also triggers Overload: 2, so you have less mana the next turn. The problem I have is that Shaman doesn’t have a ton of synergy for Deathrattle in the first place. Now, if this expansion drops some serious Totem synergy, or we get a new card like Al’Akir the Windlord on the other hand. . . Shaman has had some issues dropping totems, and this does sort of fix it. But for 5 mana? I’m not entirely sold on it. It is a ⅘ for 5 with Deathrattle. It’s not the worst creature, but as of this printing, we have no idea why this was created. Does it synergize or work well with any card in Standard? Wild, I could see it being used again, with Al’Akir. But in Standard? Ehhh. I dunno.
Instructor Fireheart (Legendary 3-cost Minion): Instructor Fireheart is not a game-breaker, but boy can she do some incredible things, especially with Dwarven Archaeologist. A Battlecry from this 3-cost legendary has you Discover a spell that costs 1 mana or more. If you play the spell this turn, repeat this effect. This isn’t likely to be a world breaker, but you can conceivably trigger this again and again. But it is finite since it’s a 1-mana or more. That’s good because otherwise, it could be an infinite spell loop. I’m very glad this isn’t a Mage/Shaman card. That means we aren’t going to normally use this Shaman legendary to boost our Spell Damage to unreasonable levels. It’s a card that’s got a lot of potential value.
Molten Blast (Rare 3-cost Spell): A nice, simple spell that will be amazing when you pair it with +Spell Damage. Are there better things you could slot in? Yeah, probably. But you would slot this in if you’re going for +Spell Damage/minion flood. It’s very possible, especially for Shaman/Mage dual-class cards, and the general expansion feel/mood. This is 3 mana for 2 damage to a target. Then you summon that many 1/1 Elementals! So the more damage it does, the more minions you get. Good thing they don’t have rush, yeah?
Tidal Wave (Common 8-cost Spell): What we have here, is a potential tide-turner, if you’ll pardon the pun. An 8-cost spell that has Lifesteal, and potentially board wipes. Bear in mind that we have access to +Spell Damage as Shaman. It deals a baseline 3 damage to all mana, and all that damage comes back to you as Health. If you’re about to die, you and obliterate the board and go back to full Health, in theory! I like this card, even with its crazy cost. If we run this in the same deck as Earthquake, we have so much control. But yes, this is board clear with life gain. That’s double your pleasure, double your fun. Sure, you lose your totems and +Spell Damage minions (probably), but you now have a way back into the game! Huzzah!
Boneweb Egg (Rare 2-Cost Minion): A 0/2 for 2? Well, that’s pretty lame, IMO. But wait, what’s it do? It has a Deathrattle. When it dies, you summon a pair of 2/1 Spiders. But if you discard this card, you still trigger the Deathrattle. This will be a nice fit for quite a few Warlock decks that require discard. Why not pitch something to the grave that still gives you a benefit? Yeah, I like the Boneweb Egg, that’s for sure. Maybe a niche’ card, we’ll see what the meta needs.
Archwitch Willow (Legendary 9-Cost Minion): A 7/7 minion for 9 is well, it’s okay. Here’s another card that, as of right now, feels better for Wild than Standard. Her Battlecry is very potentially busted. You summon a Random Demon from your hand and your deck. It’s not just one demon, according to that, but two. When this was revealed, we saw a pair of demons summoned: Imprisoned Scrap Imp and Flame Imp. But these are weak demons! If you’re running her with a ton of really high-power, high-cost Demons, this can be a bunker-busting game-winner. But yet again, this is RNG. I thought Blizzard was going to lower the amount of RNG-based cards the game is going to have! It seems like every day I reveal at least one.
School Spirits (Common 3-cost Spell): Do you have School Spirit? I hope so! School Spirits is our Soul Fragment triggering card and again, thankfully, it’s common. This is a card that will undoubtedly be used, even if they aren’t using the Soul Fragment cards. Why? When you cast this 3-cost spell, it deals 2 damage to all minions and brings 2 Soul Fragments to your deck. So it’s budget AOE, and potential heals later in the game. It’s AOE with upside, and it’s not expensive to craft or use. This is going to be a well-used card. You can be sure of that.
Void Drinker (Epic 5-cost Minion – Demon): If you don’t have Soul Fragments in your deck, this card is worthless. A ⅘ Taunt for 5? Meh. It has Battlecry that destroys a Soul Fragment in your deck. If this happens, Void Drinker gains +3/+3, making it a ⅞ Taunt. If you’ve already dropped School Spirits, and you drop Archwitch Willow, you could pull this out of the nether, destroy a Soul Fragment, and thus get a huge Void Drinker for nothing. It’s an okay card, but if you aren’t already ready to destroy a Soul Fragment, it’s not worth it.
Shadowlight Scholar (Rare 3-cost Minion): Even though this is arguably the weakest of the Soul Fragment cards, it’s still very good. A ¾ for 3 is honestly not bad on the curve, even if you don’t have Soul Fragments. But if you do, her Battlecry will destroy a Soul Fragment, and deal 3 damage to a target. This means you can hit the other player in the Face. It’s a decent control card just in general. Even if it’s the “weakest,” it’s still quite good.
Rattlegore (Legendary 9-Cost Minion): Rattlegore is a boss from actual WoW lore, so that’s already neat. But it’s a 9/9 for 9, so that’s slower than I’d care to think about. If we can cheat this out early, why not just run Colossus of the Moon instead? Because this 9/9 has a Deathrattle: Resummon this with -1/-1. That leads me to the question: Does it come back again as an 8/8, 7/7, 6/6, et cetera? If so, this is an unstoppable fiend that can lead us to quite a few victories. Opponent board wipes? So what! He’s going to come back! I just think he’s kind of cost-prohibitive. But I’d love to see him in highlander decks and things like that.
Troublemaker (Rare 8-Cost Minion): Here’s another high-cost creature that I’m curious about in Warrior. Reminds me a lot of Priestess of Fury and Ragnaros, the Firelord. Why? Because he deals essentially random damage. This is a 6/8, that at the end of your turn, you summon a pair of 3/3 Ruffians that attack random enemies. It’s important to note that this means they could just target the actual Hero of the other player! You could get a free 6 damage directly to face, and you just can’t beat that.
Playmaker (Epic 3-Cost Minion): This right here’s an interesting minion, with some potential upside. They’re built for Rush minions. After you play a Rush minion, summon a copy of it with 1 Health remaining. What makes this interesting to me is that it doesn’t summon copies with “1 Health” but “1 Health Remaining.” This means it could synergize well with Warrior decks that rely on having “weakened” minions (so damaged minions). I think this could be a really fun card to run. Being able to have a second of your Rush minions whenever you play them means you can throw the clone away to weaken something, while still having the “original” Rush minion to either attack with, or hold it until next turn! It’s not wildly busted (yet), but this might be fun with Rush/Reborn minions like Restless Mummy. That way we kill the clone, it comes back, we kill the original, it comes back too! Free minions!
Reaper’s Scythe (Rare 4-cost Equipment – Weapon): It’s not a wildly ridiculous card, but you can do some pretty serious AOE minion clearing with it. At least, for one turn. A 4/2 for 4, this weapon has Spellburst – Also damages adjacent minions this turn. So we target something weak, in the middle preferably, and blast the minions to its side for 4 damage also (but we can also enhance that number with a variety of effects). So it’s a fun niche card, but not going to be our must-include, I don’t think.
Athletic Studies (Common 1-cost Spell): We’ve seen at least one card like this per class. It’s a “Studies” card. We Discover a particular style of minion – in this case, a Rush minion. The next one we cast costs 1 mana less. I like this style of card, and each one befits the Hero class; it’s tied to’s theme. Plus, there are plenty of amazing Rush minions! This could give us an awesome legendary that we don’t have in the deck (because there is no room or simply don’t have the Dust).
Headmaster Kel’ thuzad (Legendary 5-Cost Minion): I was hoping he would be Mage-exclusive at first, but on second thought, I seldom play mage in Heartstone, so this is one of the spoilers in Scholomance Academy I’m happy about! I briefly mentioned him earlier, but I think Headmaster Kel’ thuzad will help out aggressive spell decks. He’s a 4/6 for 5 with Spellburst: If the spell destroys any minions, summon them. Did you wipe all the other player’s minions, or use a spell to sacrifice your minions? Just bring them back! It only happens once, so make it count. God, I love how much utility this card adds. You can get all kinds of minions you’d normally never run! Plus, it rewards aggressive plays and removal.
Transfer Student (Epic 2-Cost Minion): We’ll receive two of these for free if we log in before October. I’m not entirely sold on the card, but I really like the concept of it. This yet another “RNG” card for Hearthstone. It’s a 2/2 for 2, and its effect is dependent on what board we’re playing on. What are the various effects you can get? Well, I’m glad you asked!
- Pandaria: Battlecry: Give a friendly minion +1/+2
- Stormwind: Divine Shield
- Stranglethorn: Stealth, Poisonous
- Orgrimmar: Battlecry: Deal 2 damage
Those are the most current boards. If you want to see the previous year’s effects, for Wild/casual/etc, the Hearthstone Gamepedia has a comprehensive list. I like the idea of this card but again, it’s a bit too random for me. As far as the card itself, it’s unique in that it doesn’t change based on the character class, or the hand, or the board state. It matters what the physical board looks like. None of the effects are bad, but I don’t know if I would run it in a competitive deck for the sheer random factor.
Onyx Magescribe (Common 6-Cost Minion – Dragon): Hey, a minion that has a typing! It’s the first I’ve seen of that this whole expansion. And it’s a dragon, so it synergizes well with a lot of different decks! It’s a 4/9 for 6 though, which is kind of high. But consider this: Spellburst: Add 2 random spells from your class to your hand. So, you burn through a spell after casting him, and you receive two spells as a result! That sounds like a win-win. Plus, 9 Health? Hello? How can you not like that?
Pen Flinger (Common 1-Cost Minion): I don’t think this is an infinite, but it’s a fun, reliable loop. Especially when you have access to 0/1-cost spells! When you cast Fluffy Author (1/1 for 1), his Battlecry triggers, dealing 1 damage to a target. Then, when you cast a spell, his Spellburst triggers, returning him to your hand. You can just keep doing it over and over, as long as you have the mana! The more mana and the lower cost your spells are, you can do some annoying things with this card. This was honestly a card archetype I was waiting for when I saw Spellburst initially. It’s a card that deals with damage that’s easy to return to your hand, especially since I imagine the Spellburst will re-trigger every time since it’s a fresh cast of him putting the Pen Flinger into play. What a wild common for the Hearthstone Scholomance Academy spoilers! Why did outof.cards call this “Fluffy Author?” That’s what we want to know.
Wretched Tutor (Common 4-Cost Minion): Wow. That’s all I have to say about this card. A ⅖ for 4, and it has Spellburst! Whenever you cast a spell the first time, this minion deals 2 damage to all other minions. Any deck that has Lifesteal can grant its minions. This is a potential board wipe and a huge heal. I wonder if Shadowstep bouncing it out of play would let it re-trigger its Spellburst a second time? That’s the same thing I wonder about Pen Flinger. This is, however, another really powerful trigger for Libram of Justice. It turns all enemy minions Health to 1 and gives you a ¼ weapon. You play this, the enemies weaken, and then you blow them all up. I foresee a lot of decks (particularly Priest, Warlock, Paladin, Demon Hunter) running this card as a tech tool.
Vectus (Legendary 5-Cost Minion): Vectus is a really interesting card, and it’s 100% designed with Rogue/Priest Deathrattle combos in mind. Might be great for Eggs too. I don’t think it’s going to be busted at all thanks to its prohibitive mana cost (5). For Deathrattle combos, you want to curve out early with low-cost stuff. I think it has potential though. But what does Vectus do? When you cast him, his Battlecry gives you two 1/1 Whelps, and each gains a Deathrattle from your minions that died earlier this game. The downside is again, RNG. It doesn’t seem like you control what ability they get. We’ll just have to see. If it’s an RNG card, I don’t think I’d enjoy it, unless I only have one or two Deathrattle powers in my grave. It’s okay, though.
Lorekeeper Polkelt (Legendary 4-Cost Minion): Lorekeeper Polkelt is frankly, a fascinating card. This is one of the most unique Battlecry powers I’ve ever seen in Hearthstone: Reorder your deck from the Highest Cost card to the Lowest Cost card. I want to see this run with Kael’thas Sunstrider already in play. That way, you get your crazy cost combo cards into your hand. Cast some cheap cards from your hand, and drop those 8-10-12 cost cards for 0! This would be fun with a new card we’re going to cover next (Sphere of Sapience). Lorekeeper Polkelt is fascinating, and I really think it has the potential to do some destructive things in both Standard and Wild metas. If your deck relies on very expensive cards (like say, Highlander), it can really make your win much faster. Now you don’t have to wait for those cards! Now they’re on the top of the deck!
Sphere of Sapience (Legendary 1-Cost Weapon): A . . . neutral weapon? YOU GOT IT! We’re breaking new grounds here, as opposed to the website, newgrounds. This is not an aggressive weapon though. Instead, it’s a Scry card! At the start of your turn, you peek at the top card of your deck. If you choose to, you can put it on the bottom of your deck, and this card loses 1 Durability (Baseline 0/4). In decks where you can improve the Durability of a weapon, it’s twice as good. Scry is a powerful tool though. It lets you see if the next card is what you want, and if not, you can try again. If you’ve already got Lorekeeper Polkelt, you combine it with this card, and you can shuffle through your most expensive combo pieces much faster. Sure, that’s two expensive legendary cards (in Dust Prices, not mana cost). This makes me hope that one day, Hearthstone gets away from that tedious method of creating cards.
Keymaster Alabaster (Legendary 7-cost Minion): On first glance, I said to myself “Good. Freakin’. God.” when I looked at Keymaster Alabaster. A 6/8 for 7, the other player will try their level best to kill this as soon as humanly possible. Because anytime the other player draws a card, you add a copy of that card to your hand that costs 1 mana. Not only do we get a card that costs 1, but we now know what the other player pulled! Alexstraza? Now we have a 1-cost version! Oh God, I love this card. I do, I don’t care how logical, or how random it will be, I would run this in so many decks, just because. There’s nothing more disrespectful than defeating the other player with their cards. Will it be abused? Probably not, because he’s a 7-cost. This could be fun in Wild, using Coldlight Oracle to make the other player draw 2 cards. I want to see a combo with this using Demon Hunter’s Glide. If Outcast, your opponent shuffles their hand into their deck and draws 4 cards. So we can get a lot of value in that hypothetical situation. I know what jank/combo deck I’m building.
Educated Elekk (Epic 3-cost Minion – Beast): You know what they say, “An Elekk never forgets.” This is a card that, on a hypothetical level, I adore. This is a ¾ beast for 3, and anytime a spell is cast, the Educated Elekk remembers it. When it dies, Deathrattle triggers and those spells get shuffled into your deck. I like this because it remembers both player’s spells. We could, in theory, do some hilarious, awful things with it. This could be used in a variety of decks, but as a beast, I want to see it in Hunter decks the most. Maybe Druids too. If nothing else, this will be a meme-worthy, troll card. I’m here for it.
Enchanted Cauldron (Epic 3-cost Minion): This is a card 100% designed for janky nonsense. It’ll be a great Arena pick, but I don’t know how often it’s going to see actual play. But what does this ⅙ Spellburst minion do? When you cast that second spell, you cast a random spell of the same mana cost. So if you end turn, and next turn drop a 10-cost spell, you get a random 10-cost. I think this would be very useful with Kael’thas, potentially. If you cast a spell with Kael’thas and pay 0 mana, but the original cost was 10, that brings an interesting conundrum. If it counts the base cost, we could get two 10-cost spells for 0.
Robes of Protection (Rare 3-cost Minion): This should have been a piece of equipment, in my opinion. But it’s a 2/4 minion that gives your minions “Can’t be the target of spells or Hero powers.” It’s a very great anti-control card, and it protects itself when it’s onboard. I like this card. I don’t know that it’s going to see tons of widespread play, but I regardless, really like the card. It’s brilliant and useful if the meta becomes control-based.
Steward of Scrolls (Common 5-cost Minion – Elemental): Remember when I said there would be at least some additions to +Spell Damage? Well, here’s one of the new ones. I’m not sold on the Steward of Scrolls. It’s got Spell Damage+1, which is nice and is an Elemental. It also has Battlecry: Discover a spell. My problem is primarily with it being a 4/4 for 5. Please use another card to “Discover” this creature and put it into your hand. But I don’t know if it’s worth adding to a deck for 5 mana. It’s going to be hard to curve and take advantage of the cast’s additional spell damage unless you draw it well late into the game. By then, you are already beyond needing that one point (in theory at least) of Spell Damage. I do think it’s okay.
Ogremancer (Common 5-cost Minion): This is another card that is “Okay.” It’s one that I like conceptually, as a 3/7 for 5. This card practically feels designed to try and combat the meta created with Scholomance Academy: Spellburst. Spellburst is going to make players start casting way more spells to get those abilities to pop off. Ogremancer, in theory, combats this. Whenever your opponent casts a spell, you summon a 2/2 Skeleton with Taunt. Sure, those taunt creatures aren’t very powerful, but they’re annoying. Your opponent can’t fight your Hero until they deal with the Taunt creatures in most situations. I like this card in theory. Maybe make them 3/3s? Or would that be too powerful?
Intrepid Initiate (Common 1-cost Minion): This is a card that could become Sleeper OP. It’s a ½ for 1 that has Spellburst. On turn 1 we could, in theory, do something pretty darn mean with this. Pair it with Blessing of Might, and trigger that Spellburst – Gain +2 Attack. Suddenly they’re a pretty brutal beatstick. If the other player doesn’t have a Taunt creature, we’re going to start hitting them hard right in the face. This is going to be a card people throw into quite a few decks I think. Not a card that is going to see nerfs right away. I do like the possibilities it presents!
Dual Class: Demon Hunter/Warlock
Felosophy (Epic 1-Cost Spell): Ahh, get it? It’s not “Philosophy” but “Felosophy” because of Fel! Hah! This is a card that’s going to see nerfs. I can almost promise it. A 1-mana spell where you copy the lowest Cost Demon in your hand? If this is your Outcast card (Left/Right-most card) you also give it +1/+1! Someone suggested something horrifying, while also hilarious: Handlock, copy Jaraxxus, so you get another shot at winning the game (getting 15 Health). The lower-cost demons are some of the best in the game anyway. Having extra versions of them to use is going to be busted. I’m betting within a month, that Felosophy will get a nerf. Either a cost increase or maybe even removing the Outcast effect. We’ll see, but this card is ridiculous.
Soulciologist Malicia (Legendary 7-cost Minion): Soulciologist Malicia will be a required card, we think if you’re running Soul Fragment control. Otherwise, this is not a card you’re going to need ever. She’s a 5/5 for 7, but for each Soul Fragment in your deck, you summon a 3/3 Soul with Rush. You could at most have 6 Soul Fragments in the deck, unless through other shenanigans that I’m not aware of. That would give you 6 3/3s with Rush, and that’s never a bad thing. On top of that, this does not destroy the Soul Fragments in your deck, so you can still trigger those effects later. I think that math is correct.
Soul Shear (Rare 2-cost Spell): “Deal 3 damage to a minion. Shuffle 2 Soul Fragments into your deck.” 3 damage for 2 mana and you get Soul Fragments?! This could be a very powerful, possibly nerfed spell for 2 mana. It’s a Darkbomb only with a potential heal attached to it. It won’t go in Odd DH decks though, because it’s an even-cost spell! So be grateful for that, friends. But it’s a very powerful spell. I can feel it gaining an extra point of cost.
Spirit Jailer (Common 1-cost Minion – Demon): It’s a common, it’s a Demon, and it’s only 1-mana. PLUS it adds 2 Soul Fragments into your deck as a Battlecry. If that’s not enough, it’s a ⅓ for 1! Overall this is a very strong 1-cost spell, and it’s going to be in both Demon Hunter/Warlock decks, that’s for sure. It’s got so much potential, and it’s an odd cost for those Odd-cost Decks. I like Spirit Jailer as a turn-1 drop. And we can run two of them! Oh yes, Spirit Jailer is wonderful.
Dual Class: Druid/Hunter
Shan’ do Wildclaw (Legendary 3-Cost Minion): Ehhh. . . It’s a Choose One for Hunter and/or Druid, and it’s neat. Give Beasts in your deck +1/+1, or Transform into a copy of a friendly Beast. So, run this with Dinotamer Bram to get a second King Krush, which sounds amazing and broken. Maybe in that Druid deck where your “Choose One” effects let you pick both? I don’t see this having a ton of utility in Druid, at least, not yet. Maybe there will be some really good new Beasts to clone in Druid. It just looks like a really solid Hunter card, instead of something that could be great in either or. This is a “time will tell” card.
Adorable Infestation (Common 1-Cost Spell): This is probably going to be the most adorable card in the set. It does a whole lot for 1 mana too. While it’ll probably be neat in a Druid deck, it’s no doubt going to be way more useful to Hunters. For 1 mana you get: +1/+1 for a minion, summon a 1/1 Cub, and add a Cub to your hand. As long as the Cub is a “Beast,” it’ll see even more play. It reminds me a lot of Fire Fly, but not as good. This provides a lot of stat advantage for just 1 mana, along with another creature to play, guaranteed. Plus it’s so cute! There’s a ton of upside to using this in Hunter decks. It’ll see play.
Guardian Animals (Epic 7-cost Spell): Ehh. This one’s okay. It might be a fun mid-game bomb, but with the new Druid card (Forest Warden Omu), this could be much stronger than initially thought. For a measly 7 mana, you summon two Beasts that cost 5 or less mana from your deck and give them Rush. If you’re only running specific Beasts in your deck, this becomes a lot less random. In Hunter, this becomes a bit more random, but still quite potent. This is a card you run to ramp a couple of creatures that you don’t currently have access to, so I like it. It’s not going to be a game-breaker. At least, I don’t think. I have a feeling someone has already seen this and has some great ideas.
Teacher’s Pet (Rare 5-cost Minion – Beast): With a Beast deck, this card is amazing. Well maybe not amazing, but it has a lot of possibilities! It’s a ⅘ Taunt Beast and only costs 5 mana. When it dies (and it will, because Taunt), it summons a random 3-cost Beast. So it has a lot of potential use, and I think it will be picked frequently in Arena. I like the idea of this card in both Druid and Hunter, but I think Hunters will get more out of it.
Dual Class: Hunter/Demon Hunter
Ace Hunter Kreen (Legendary 3-Cost Minion): If you aren’t running this in your tempo/aggro Demon Hunter decks, I don’t know what to say to you. What does he do that’s so great? As a 2/4 for 3, he makes “Your other characters Immune while attacking.” That makes me wonder if Ace Hunter Kreen has to attack, or if while he’s in play, your other characters are immune to damage/effects while they’re attacking. The wording is a little ambiguous, but it seems like it would be a must-include. It’s not like Demon Hunter will ever really be without a board state. It’s better for Demon Hunter than traditional Hunter, but I think it will work nicely in both decks.
Trueaim Crescent (Epic 1-cost Equipment – Weapon): This one is kind of confusing, so I’m not going to go into too much detail. It’s a 1 attack, 4 durability weapon. After your Hero attacks a minion, your minions attack it also. Does this override summoning sickness? What if my minions have already attacked a target? Do they get another attack? I have a lot of questions about this one because it’s kind of weirdly worded. This is a card we’ll have to see in action, that’s for sure.
Blood Herald (Common 5-cost Minion): Meh. I’m glad it’s common because it’s not a card I can see as necessary. Maybe a 1-of, as a surprise? But this is a 1/1 for 5 that you want to hold in your hand. You don’t want to cast it until much later in the game. But having it on turn 1 is frankly not too bad if you’re playing aggressively. Whenever a friendly minion dies, this minion gains +1/+1, as long as he’s in your hand when they die. So, in theory, you could do a lot with this. But it’s too weird and annoying to set up. I’m not a fan of Blood Herald, but I’m sure somebody is going to disagree and find a great way to use it, which is fine. But it’s not for me.
Dual Class: Mage/Shaman
Devolving Missiles (Epic 1-Cost Spell): Now, this works well in either deck. This card, when cast, shoots three missiles at random enemy minions. It transforms them into minions that cost 1 mana less. It’s not amazing, but I do like it! It has a chance of completely ruining the other player’s strategy and taking what they’ve put work into and ruining it. It could make better minions, potentially though. Too RNG heavy for me to use, though.
Ras Frostwhisper (Legendary 5-Cost Minion): This card’s ability is Improved by Spell Damage. Keep that firmly in mind, with Mozaki, Master Duelist. In theory, combining these with low-cost (0-2) spells, you could OTK someone. How could this create a one-turn-kill, or something very close? Ras Frostwhisper is a 5-cost legendary, and at the end of your turn, deals 1 damage to all enemies (including the player). With this being improved by spell damage, consider Mozaki. Anytime we cast a spell, we improve our spell damage by 1. If we have Malygos, this would be hilarious too. Being that it’s a 3/6 for 5, it’s also very hard to kill. 5 mana is pretty reasonable for what it does. We also want to have Sorcerer’s Apprentice for this card, to reduce our spell costs by 1 (down to 0). Then we just ping away until our Spell Damage is high enough; then simply end your turn and zap the other player’s board into pieces! This one could see a nerf, I think.
Primordial Studies (Common 1-cost Spell): This is honestly an amazing spell in theory. I feel like we’re going to see quite a few more Neutral +Spell Damage minions. This is a 1-mana spell, and you Discover a Spell Damage minion. Your next one costs 1 less. So I assume that simply means the next one you cast (even if it’s not the one you Discovered). What I also wonder is if it will pull +Spell Damage from other classes if possible. I don’t know why this wasn’t just made a Mage spell, and why it was added to Shaman. Are there going to be more +Spell Damage options for Shaman? But this is something new and interesting, so at the very least, I’m here to see what it does to the game going forward.
Trick Totem (Rare 2-cost Minion – Totem): Trick Totem is a meme card. It’s silly, but in the right situation, it can lay the beat down. As a Totem, it’s going to synergize with Shaman well! But this is a 0/3 for 2 and has a pretty fun ability. At the end of your turn, cast a random spell that costs 3 mana or less! There’s no telling what you’ll get, but I like what this can potentially do. This is one of those cards I say “won’t break the game” but can do something hilarious and absurd, quite out of nowhere. I hope so!
Dual Class: Paladin/Warrior
Ceremonial Maul (Epic 3-Cost Equipment – Weapon): You can do a lot with this card. It has no downsides that I see. A 2/2 Weapon for 3, it comes equipped with a powerful Spellburst. When you cast your next spell, you summon a Taunt minion with the stats equal to the spell’s cost. The bigger the spell, the stronger your taunt minion. This would be great in a tempo deck for either class. Maybe It’s just because I love Taunt as an ability. Someone mentioned pairing this with Brawl in Warrior would be fun. You cast Brawl, and all minions but one die, then the Spellburst procs. Worst case, the other player has one minion, but you have a 5/5 Taunt. Or you win the Brawl and have a minion, and the 5/5 Taunt.
Commencement (Rare 7-cost Spell): This reminds me of an old keyword that I’m shocked wasn’t used “Recruit.” If we get to pick the minion, this is going to be fun with another card that was revealed. I mean, we won’t be able to attack a hero with it right away, but the +8/+8 offered by Blessing of Authority would mean the next turn we could potentially just drop the other player with a single mighty blow. But Commencement, for 7 mana lets us summon a minion from our deck, and then also give it Taunt and Divine Shield. We pick something huge and annoying, give it Taunt/Divine Shield, and if we have Kael’thas, drop Blessing after for 0. Then next turn, swing lethal. Love. It.
Shield of Honor (Common 1-cost Spell): When I look at these dual-class cards, I have to ask myself if both classes will use them. Warriors getting access to an excellent buff/Divine Shield card for 1 mana? Lots of decks are going to use it. For Paladins, this is Seal of Champions, but with a damage requirement. It isn’t hard to get a damaged minion thankfully. But for 1 mana, you give a damaged minion +3 Attack and Divine Shield. Honestly, it’s a great card. The “damaged minion” requirement makes the 1-cost pretty fair, even at the common rarity. There does need to be commons/rares that are good cards, after all.
Dual Class: Priest/Paladin
Gift of Luminance (Rare 3-Cost Spell): Gift of Luminance will surely be neat in both classes, it’s genuinely going to be a terror for Deathrattle Priest. This 3-mana spell grants a minion of yours Divine Shield, and then you receive a 1/1 copy of it! There are so many things you can do with this card. Can you imagine this going on Mindflayer Kaahrj? We get to pick a minion with him, and when Mindflayer dies, we receive a new copy of that minion. Or Teron Gorefiend, Ashes of A’lar, or even Reliquary of Souls? This card is amazing. It keeps your Deathrattle minion around 1 turn longer at least, and lets you use that new one as a sacrificial pawn if you need it. At least the copy doesn’t have rush (unless the target does). For 3 mana, this is potentially a must-run for deathrattle Priest.
Devout Pupil (Epic 6-cost Minion): Devout Pupil will see play, you can be sure of that. Especially in buff Priest/Paladin decks, or heal decks. This is a ⅘ for 6 that also has Divine Shield and Taunt. This minion costs 1 less mana for each spell we cast on friendly characters all game. So this can be a 0-cost ⅘ with Divine Shield/Taunt! Run this in your Libram decks, 100%. Sethekk Veilweaver and this card would be amazing. Veilweaver adds a Priest spell to your hand whenever you cast a spell on a minion, so you can immediately see the appeal. This is going to make Priests and Paladins very meta-powerful going forward.
High Abbess Alura (Legendary 4-cost Minion): Mmm. A delightfully double-edged sword comes with High Abbess Alura. She’s a 3/6 for 4 and comes equipped with a useful but dangerous Spellburst. When you cast your next spell, High Abbess Alura casts a spell from your deck – and targets Alura if possible. So your buffs and clone spells (Power Word: Replicate, for example) will be amazing and do something great for your Legendary Paladin. BUT: What if you have spells like Subdue in the deck? Suddenly she’s nerfed into the floor, maybe even destroyed. So you have to be incredibly careful with what cards you’re running. It means you have to run fewer control spells and far more buff spells. With planning and a little luck, you can do so much with this card.
Wave of Apathy (Common 1-cost Spell): This card would be amazing with Cabal Shadow Priest (Take control of an enemy minion with 2 or less Attack). A very solid 1-cost common, it’s a great control option for very powerful, quick-dropping minions. It’s a temporary fix, so bring some heat with it. Wave of Apathy turns all enemy minions Attack down to 1 until your next turn. You are dealing with some heavy Taunt minions, or want to take control of something? Here’s how you do it. Batter down their strong taunt/annoying +Spell Damage/Spellburst minions! This could also pair nicely with the Shield of Honor. Attack a minion that’s now got 1 Attack; your minion takes damage, but lives. Now it gains +3 Attack and Divine Shield! I like this card, but I think it’s going to be a bit of a niche’ choice.
Dual Class: Rogue/Mage
Wand Thief (Common 1-Cost Minion): This one’s very self-explanatory on why it’s amazing for Rogue decks. It features Combo: Discover a Mage Spell. In order to get a Mage spell in your hand for either class, you just have to cast another spell first. This is potentially very destructive for Rogues. We’re handing them the keys to the arcane. Who knows what they’ll get?! Maybe the new Combustion spell? Maybe some kind of board wipe? Maybe the new Devolving Missiles? We have no idea! But we love this common.
Jaundice Barov (Legendary 5-cost Minion): First off, I love this art. She’s a 2/1 for 5 with Battlecry. She summons a pair of random 5-cost minions, and you secretly pick which one dies when it takes damage. It’s interesting, but there are a lot of questions here. Is it going to synergize with anything other than Khadgar? Will it pull from cross-class minions? Is it Mage/Rogue only? What are the odds of it pulling Deathrattle targets? It’s an okay card, but I want to see what better players can do with it.
Potion of Illusion (Epic 4-cost Spell): For Deathrattle Rogue decks, this is going to be hilarious and amazing. You add 1/1 copies of all the minions you control in your hand. They all cost 1 mana. This could also be useful in your Spelldamage Mage decks to possibly OTK. But my main thought is “Oh GOD. Deathrattle Rogue HYPE!!!” I can see this being used. For 4 mana, this is pretty solid.
Brain Freeze (Rare 1-cost Spell): Whew doctor. For 1 mana, this hits a minion with Freeze, and if you played a spell before this, it also triggers a Combo: Also, deal 3 damage to it! Ray of Frost then zap them with Brain Freeze! Destroy some early-game threats. Freeze Rogue? Is that a thing that’s going to happen? It’s a great, better version of Frostbolt that you can also slap into a Rogue deck!
Dual Class: Shaman/Druid
Lightning Bloom (Common 0-Cost Spell): Do you need two mana this turn, and don’t care what it costs? Lightning Bloom gives Druid and Shaman 2 mana crystals for just this turn but has a cost: Overload: 2. That means you’ll start the next turn with 2 empty crystals. This is a pretty sick way to pair the extra mana from The Coin to get 4 mana on turn 1. You could get a head start on the other player if you dropped two of these on the same turn with The Coin. Sure, next turn, you’d be down four mana, but you don’t even have that much yet anyway.
Groundskeeper (Rare 4-Cost Minion): What a change of pace – a card in Hearthstone that isn’t wildly overpowered! This is a nice, easy to understand card. It has solid upside and is worth playing. A ⅘ for 5 with Taunt and Battlecry: If you’re holding a card that costs 5 or more mana, restore 5 Health. If we have a high-cost card, while the other player is now aware of it, they don’t know what it is. And you get 5 Health! Plus a ⅘ Taunt is pretty durable and very frustrating. Honestly? It’s a pretty good card! It’s useful in both Shaman and Druid, that’s for sure.
Speaker Gidra (Legendary 3-cost Minion): Speaker Gidra is pretty great right out of the box. Even without the extra Attack/Health she brings, it’s pretty awesome. I don’t think you’d build a deck around her, but I like the concept of it incredibly. Rush, Windfury, Spellburst on a ¼? What’s the Spellburst do? When you cast a spell, Speaker Gidra gains Attack and Health equal to the spell’s Mana cost! So you could drop a 9-cost, and hit someone for 18 damage or so. You could OTK with Gidra if you planned for it.
Runic Carvings (Epic 6-cost Spell): For Druid decks that run “Choose Both” instead of “Choose One,” this is going to be amazing. This spell lets you choose one: Summon four 2/2 Treant Totems, or Overload (2) to summon them with Rush! This makes Treant Totems, so I can see this being pretty well used in Totem Shaman decks. This could be very powerful in aggressive decks.
Dual Class: Warlock/Priest
Brittlebone Destroyer (Rare 4-Cost Minion): What an amazing card in the spoilers for Hearthstone’s Scholomance Academy expansion! It’s perfect for many Priest and Warlock decks. This is a 3/3 for 4, which has a Battlecry. If your hero’s Health changed in any way this turn, destroy a minion. Gain life? Destroy someone. Lose 2 life to draw a card? DESTROY SOMEONE. You can use this to trigger a Deathrattle on your side, or simply to delete a minion that offends you. This is a great card, even if it costs 4 mana. I think it’s got a lot to offer several decks.
Disciplinarian Gandling (Legendary 4-Cost Minion): He’s going to catch a Health nerf, you watch. A 3/6 for 4 with overwhelmingly good power, I’m glad he’s not in Rogue. “After you play a minion, destroy it and summon a 4/4 Failed Student.” Oh. God. Deathrattle is going to love this legendary. Chromatic Egg anyone? Remember that Egg we revealed? It’s going to nicely here. Galakrond Priest is going to be a mighty force, potentially. That and Warlock Zoo. Anything in those two classes that relies heavily on creatures dying/Deathrattle, they’re going to love this Disciplinarian. I love his Flavor Text, too: “He doesn’t grade on a curve, but on a sharp spike instead.”
Flesh Giant (Epic 8-Cost* Minion): The asterisk next to the cost is about to become clear. This 8/8 for 8 costs 1 mana less for each time your hero’s Health changed during your turns. This makes it better for Warlock than Priest, but in healing decks, it could still very much be useful in the Priest end of things. But the question I have is: Does this still count even when Flesh Giant isn’t in your hand? In Legends of Runeterra, they make it clear by stating on the card that they have to “see” the heal changes, but this does not. If it can be in your deck, and the game just keeps track of it, playing this for 0 or 1 mana in the mid-game would be amazing. Sounds like if you change your Health total say, 3 times on one of your turns, it will count each specific life total change. It also specifies your turn, so you can’t just let the other player hit you, and that just counts. That would be markedly unfair.
Raise Dead (Common 0-cost Spell): Remember Brittlebone Destroyer that lets you destroy a minion if your Health changed this turn? Cast Raise Dead for 0 mana first! You take 3 damage but return two friendly minions that died this game to your hand. Great for re-using Deathrattle abilities or simply in case creatures that were very useful was killed by a rude, aggressive opponent. Priest Control is 100% going to run this, but I think Warlock will too. Heck, you could pull your Prime back (Kantrethad Ebonlocke as an example). Definitely going to be fun for Highlander decks, so they can get their cards back to use one more time, and not count against them!
Dual Class: Warrior/Rogue
Steeldancer (Epic 4-Cost Minion): Welp, Weapon Warrior/Rogue just got a new tool that can support game-winning moves. When you play this minion, you summon a random Minion with cost equal to your weapon’s Attack. The bigger your weapon, the better your chance to get someone truly devastating. This might be a fun mid-game bomb or even a late-game game-winner combo. I’m not always a fan of RNG cards, but I like how interesting this one is. Perhaps we’ll see even more weapon tech for the two classes as time goes on.
Doctor Krastinov (Legendary 5-Cost Minion): Now I understand Playmaker! This will make Playmaker pretty darn fun. Doctor Krastinov is a 4/4 for 5 with Rush and when this minion attacks, your weapon gains +1/+1. Your weapon gets 1 more damage and 1 more durability! So, you pair this with Playmaker making copies of Rush minions, in particular, Doc Krastinov! If you can get two Playmakers and a Doc in play, that’s a lot of extra damage for your weapon of choice. I think he’s better than Captain Greenskin, in that he has Rush and is not a pirate. If you don’t use Pirate synergy for your Warrior/Rogue decks, I think Doctor Krastinov is better. On top of that, Doctor Krastinov can give you repeated +1/+1 stacks for your weapon! Use him to batter weak minions over and over, and make a copy with Playmaker! I think its cost is 5 mana is a bit high. Other than that, I’m a big fan of this for Warrior decks and even Rogue decks.
Cutting Class (Common 5-cost Spell): In theory, this card could be hilarious and amazing. In practice, it will just be a good card, and that’s okay. It’s a baseline 5 mana card that lets you draw 2 cards. But it costs 1 mana less per Attack of your weapon. So if you have an Arcanite Reaper (5 attack) equipped, it’s free! It’s a free 2 card draw. Or you could have a 3 attack weapon, drop Preparation, and cast this for free. Card draw is never a bad thing, but if you have to cast it for 5 mana, that’s not going to be fun. More than likely it will average a 2-cost, which is fine. 2 mana for 2 cards is undoubtedly a positive. It could be an excellent Combo engine for Rogue.