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Rating  7

Contributed by

Stonekeep

Guide Type

Last Updated

August 2, 2015

Table of Contents

HSP reviews TGT: Darnassus Aspirant & Wrathguard

View list of cards released so far in this dedicated post.

Introduction


This is the series where our contributors – high ranked ladder and Arena players – and players from Team HSP review the new revealed The Grand Tournament cards. We rate every card both in Constructed and Arena, then give you our thoughts about them. This post will be updated every time we’ll get a new review!

When it comes to the rating, we rate the cards from 1 to 5:

1 – Very Bad – The card will see no play in any kind of deck. It won’t be drafted in Arena unless you’re present with other terrible options. E.g. Magma Rager, Dalaran Mage.
2 – Bad – The card might see some occasional play in low tier or budget decks, but isn’t good enough to be played in top tier decks. It will rarely be drafted in Arena – either it needs to synergize with the deck or you need to be present with other bad options. E.g. Boulderfist Ogre, Frostwolf Warlord (Constructed), Ironforge Rifleman, Ancient Mage (Arena)
3 – Average – The card might fill some niche and see play in couple of decks. Not an especially strong card, but can be used to fill gaps in the deck after putting staple cards. In Arena, it’s the card you’re gonna draft pretty often – the card is good enough to not ruin the quality of your deck, but nothing impressive. E.g. Gnomish Inventor, Sen'jin Shieldmasta (Constructed), Bloodfen Raptor, Archmage (Arena)
4 – Good – You’re gonna see this card in a lot of decks. Either it fits into a certain archetype or is overall a good card. Your Constructed deck are mostly filled with cards of those quality. They’re strong and definitely serve their purpose. In Arena, those are the cards you actually want to see and draft – every great deck will have at least couple of those. E.g. Azure Drake, Defender of Argus, Haunted Creeper (Constructed), Harvest Golem, Mechanical Yeti, Stormwind Champion (Arena)
5 – Very Good – This is THE card that will be auto-include or at least a very strong contender. The card that is gonna be really strong and see a lot of play in many decks. Card that is often best in its role, the one that you can’t really pass. In Arena, this is the card you want to see most in the draft, the base of 12 wins Arena decks, one that you instantly pick when you see it. E.g. Dr. Boom, Mad Scientist, Piloted Shredder (Constructed), Flamestrike, Truesilver Champion, Fire Elemental (Arena)

Both of the cards were revealed on the different streams today. The first one is Druid Rare minion – Darnassus Aspirant and the second one is a Warlock Common minion – Wrathguard.

Darnassus Aspirant


WindUpRabbit


Constructed: Very Good (5)
Arena: ?

Alright, this card is definitely interesting in Constructed, since I’m a main Druid player I’m going pretty in-depth with this card.

So, basically, this card allows you to ramp up to 4 mana if it survives and if it doesn’t, it’s a vanilla 2/3. I think this card is absolutely fantastic. It’s a Wild Growth as long as long as it stays alive and if it dies, you basically lost nothing. Playing this on Turn 2 not only gives the Druid a body, but also an effect that forces the opponent to deal with it ASAP. So, in theory it basically works like this.

You pass turn one and your opponent does the same. You play this card, now you force your opponent to deal with it unless they want to deal with both a body and ramp. Let’s say it’s against a Tempo Mage, they now have the decision to either deal with it using, let’s say Frostbolt or Flamecannon or play Mad Scientist.

If they leave it up you can play Sen'jin Shieldmasta/Piloted Shredder next turn and if you kill it you can just play Shade of Naxxramas/Wild Growth and prepare for a sick Turn 4. This card will maybe not see play in standard Combo Druid, but I feel like this card can be excellent in a new variant of Watcher Druid. This is because the first effect is a Battlecry. If you silence this (Wailing Soul/Keeper of the Grove/Ironbeak Owl) it’s absolutely sick. Combine this with Ancient Watchers and you got yourself an aggro murderer. This card will definitely be something to look forward to and if it succeeds spawning a new type of deck you readers can definitely look forward to a deck guide on that.

Keyo


Constructed: Average/Good (3.5)
Arena: Average (3)

So this card is quite good, I think it will fit into some Druid decks. But the thing you have to think about with this is what benefit it has over playing Wild Growth, or do you play both? Druid is such a set in stone class with barely any room for tech, so there needs to be an incredibly valid reason for you to cut a non tech card. I think this will fit into Ramp Druids, but not into Fast/Midrange Druid. The drawback isn’t awful, because if it dies the turn after you play it its a 2/3 for 2, but if it doesn’t die you get crazy value. The problem is that a deck like Midrange Druid doesn’t have anything to cut imo – Keeper of the Grove? No. Swipe? No. Wild Growth? HARD no. The only thing i can see swapping this for is Wrath, and i still think that’s a no.

I think the drawback will have a larger impact in Arena, therefore docking its viability.

Sixis


Constructed: Average (3)
Arena: Good (4)

This guy is a Pint-Sized Summoner on steroids. That alone will make it pretty good in Arena if it gets not answered it can carry games (3 and 4 mana is the biggest power difference). Now in Constructed it will be a staple in Ancient Watcher/Wailing Soul Druid but might not find a spot on the classic Combo build. Definitely an interesting card that can become very relevant.

Stonekeep


Constructed: Good (4)
Arena: Good (4)

I really like the card. While I don’t think it’s gonna be staple in every Druid deck, it’s a really interesting choice. The card is good, because it’s never bad. At worst, it’s just a 2-drop that trades 1 for 1 with another 2-drop or eats early removal like Darkbomb, Frostbolt etc. I mean, it’s not GOOD, but definitely not bad. But if it survives, you get a free Wild Growth as long as it stays on the board (or forever if it gets Silenced, but later on that). It does mean that if you play it on turn 2 you can follow it with a 4-drop. Like the Wild Growth itself shows, playing ahead of the curve is really strong – so what about playing ahead on the curve AND having a tempo play with a 2/3 body on the board? Sick if it works and… meh, average if it doesn’t work.

What is really good about this card is that it gives another reason to play Wailing Soul Druid deck. It’s a perfect target for Silence. So, let’s say you play this on 2, it doesn’t get removed and you follow it with Wailing Soul. Not only you are 1 mana ahead of the enemy now, but you also got a 2/3 and 3/5 on the board on turn 3. That’s pretty sick. On turn 6 you might play it along the Wailing Soul to ramp up to 8 if you need to. I’d go as far and say that it may be played INSTEAD of Wild Growth in the deck like that.

In Arena, it’s also good. The reason is that spells are much more rare. Someone has to play their 2-drop first. Either it’s the player who starts or the second player if he coins it out. So if you’re the one that plays 2-drop first and it’s gonna be a Darnassus Aspirant – well, you get a free Coin next turn. That’s pretty nice value. And if by any chance enemy has no way to answer it and he misses a 2-drop, well, it starts to be really sick. The 2/3 stats are standard 2-drop stats, so even if it gets traded right away, it’s not bad. Much better version of the Pint-Sized Summoner.

And also, another minion with quasi-Taunt. Enemy can’t let it stay on the board so he’s often gonna do suboptimal plays in order to get rid of it – like using 2 mana removal on turn 3 and floating the mana instead of a 3-drop. Things like that are also important.

Nuba


Constructed: Very good (5)
Arena: Bad (2)

In constructed I can see this card as a core part of all Druid decks post TGT. This card takes away the slot of Zombie Chow, and while it costs 1 more mana, it fits a lot better in the deck’s strategy and also helps Druid earlier in the game, while not having such a downside later in the game as Chow does. This card has a lot of utilities in Constructed in which people might fail to see at first:

  • Against Control this card is a 2-mana win condition that must be responded otherwise you will snowball and win the game.
  • Against Aggro Mage, Druid’s worst nightmare, this card responds Mirror Entity secret very strongly: The Mage will lose a mana crystal whenever his copy dies, putting him 2 turns behind you.
  • Against other Aggro in general, having a 2 mana 2/3 isn’t the end of the world, against Hunter this can trade 2-for-1 against most of their threats, and if they don’t respond it and keep going face you will be able to utilize your extra mana crystal before trading this into other minions.

In Arena, however, there are a lot better minions to be picked, because despite anything else this guy is still a 2-mana 2/3, and in Arena usually you will be aiming for high value minions and not tempo boosts. And whenever we are talking about Rare cards, there are much better cards that will impact the board a lot more than a 2 mana 2/3. But in case you need a 2-drop and other cards presented to you as a choice are bad or equally costed, this guy is probably one of the better options you can get.

Wrathguard


Sixis


Constructed: Good/Very Good (4.5)
Arena: Good (4), less if the deck is more Controly

Now that’s a card that will shake things up in Constructed. We might see the resurgence of new hyper aggressive Warlock builds because of this card. His aggressively curved body and the early damage it provides can really punish a bad start by your opponent. I think this card will find a spot in Zoo list and maybe some Midrange ones too. Control will need some new tools to handle this aggression if we want to see slower cards in Constructed.

WindUpRabbit


Constructed: Good/Very Good (4.5)
Arena: ?

Amazing in Zoo, early board control (that unfortunately dies to 3 attack) and if it was a 3/4 it’d be an easy 5. Will definitely be played in Zoo, no way that it’s not going to be. Also you can finally Shield Slam face, so playing this against a high armor Warrior might not be the best of ideas! Stats are amazing. This card might spawn a Face Warlock (pls no) due to its sheer amazing stats and early face damage.

Stonekeep


Constructed: Good (4)
Arena: Good (4)

I think the card is pretty strong. In the current Zoo I’d rate it as good – definitely people would try it and if it sticks to the board, it can deal a lot of damage. A lot better than the other 4/3 for 2 – Succubus. In most cases, Wrathguard is gonna deal 3-5 damage to the owner. You rarely overkill a minion by a lot. I’ve heard people saying “Shield Slam is gonna wreck it”. Yeah, it would if the Warrior could get 20 Armor against aggressive Warlock deck, but it’s impossible. If the Warrior is at 20 Armor he won the game anyway, so it doesn’t matter. Obviously there will be a Trolden video of Warrior one-shotting Warlock with Shield Slam, but that’s not a common scenario.

I guess the card means that a lot more aggressive version of the Zoo is gonna emerge. If you are the aggressor, you don’t care whether you take the damage early in the game. You either rush enemy down or he stabilizes and kills you – in second case, the couple points of damage you took early don’t matter. So it’s a 2-drop version of Flame Imp. Flame Imp is really strong – is this card strong too? I guess it is, but we’ll have to find out. I try to not overvalue it because it’s gonna be insane only if the new “Face Lock” will become a thing. In the current Zoo it’s good, but not “oh my god I can’t play Zoo without this card” good.

In Arena, I think it’s definitely above average. And it’s not even about the attack – the 3 health is what matters imo. 2/3’s are really popular in Arena. This is a 2-drop that can kill other 2/3 2-drop and survive. Really strong. If you play rushy Warlock deck it’s also gonna be pretty good, but I don’t find this card gamebreaking. In the slower Warlock decks it’s not gonna be that good – health gain is much more rare in Arena and a lot of Warlock cards deal damage to you already, so can you afford taking 6 to the face if Mage decides to remove this with Fireball? I’m not sure. But I’m sure that the card is gonna find its spot.

Lucky


Constructed: Good (4)
Arena: Good/Very Good (4.5)

Interesting and strong card. The aggressive and overpowered body fits very well in Zoolock, because there is already enough resilient minions in this archetype – , Nerubian Egg, Imp Gang Boss – but not so many high-damage minions which can pressure very early.

The drawback might be a bit tricky, though. Although it seems to be affordable, health is sometimes relevant in aggressive Warlock archetypes, because Flame Imp and Life Tap already hurts Gul’dan, so may be the case we’ll not be able to run too many auto-damage cards in one deck that is not only based on going face.

Nuba


Constructed: Average (3)
Arena: Good (4)

Despite many thoughts regarding this card, and the hype, this card is only playable in Zoo (this will never be played in Midrange Demon decks, for example), this card also won’t be played in metagames where your life total matters even as a Zoo, so whenever you see this card being played Zoo will either be a bad deck (meaning you are not supposed to be playing a lot against other Zoo decks) and/or Face Hunter will also be bad.

This card is strong, very strong, and its for sure playable in Zoo, but it won’t be used in all the Zoo decks all the time and that is why I give this a 3 instead of a 4 or a 5.

In regarding to Aor rena, this is a decent pick since it generates a lot of value earlier in the game and you will not be getting rushed down faster than you usually are in constructed.

Enjoyed this article?



Playing Hearthstone since September 2013. Infinite Arena player. Hitting Legend rank on EU each season, with multiple high Legend climbs during the season and top 200-300 finishes.

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1 Comment

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  1. baartt says:

    Hello thanks for the reviews I do think these cards have a very good potential and i can’t wait for the expension release =)

    I wanted to point out something about the Wrathguard. I agree that the Wrathguard being killed by a 20+ shield slam will probably not happen often as zoo is a very aggresive deck and warrior will have a hard time grinding armor, but I think Oil rogue is the one that our friend Gul’dan should fear with this card. Taking a massive 6-7 damage Blade Flury with it on board doubles the burst of this single spell and in the contrary of the high damage shield slam, it may totally happen.

    It is also interesting to see that both of these cards are eligible for piloted shredder repop, if more 2 drops like these are revealed, with strong drawbacks, rejoining the list of potential self threat like doomsayer, piloted shredder could see less plays. Well true that other interesting 2 drops are coming so risky 2 drops may stay statistically insignificant.