November 4, 2016
Table of Contents
Mean Streets of Gadgetzan Info + First Impressions
New expansion was just announced on the Blizzcon stage. We knew very well that that it’s going to revolve around Gadgetzan for a while already, as we were bombarded with a lot of hints. The new expansion will revolve around the Gadgetzan “underground” – 3 gangs that compete with each other.
What we didn’t expect, though, is that this expansion might make things REALLY interesting. Because ladies and gentlemen, Mean Streets of Gadgetzan will introduce… MULTI CLASS CARDS! Yes, that’s right. So far we don’t know a lot of them, but it’s already exciting, because that means a lot of deck building opportunities and very interesting, possibly even crazy scenarios.
But let’s start from the beginning, with general info about expansion.
The 3 gangs I was talking about in the beginning are not only lore thing, it will also have a direct impact on the game. Each of the gangs will have their own cards in the game. And each of the classes will belong to one of those 3 gangs. Some of the cards introduced will be shared across all 3 classes belonging to the same gang. Here are the gangs and classes that belong into them:
- Grimy Goons: Hunter, Paladin, Warrior
- Jade Lotus: Druid, Rogue, Shaman
- Kabal: Mage, Priest, Warlock
What it means is that let’s say Hunter might play the same “class” card as a Paladin, but Mage or Rogue won’t have access to it. It will make for the interesting deck building decisions down the road and some cross-class synergies. E.g. from what we already know, Mage playing the Kabal Courier might discover a Priest card and vice versa.
One more thing is that discovering a card from 3 classes will ALWAYS let you pick one card from each class. So if you have a Grimy Goon discovering a card, you will always get 1 Hunter, 1 Paladin and 1 Warrior card offered.
Cards Revealed So Far
I will do a more in-depth review as new card show up, it’s just a teaser with my first thoughts about each of the cards showcased so far!
Hunter weapon. The Piranhas are 1/1 Beasts with no card text. The card is not that good. It’s more in the “annoying” category. Even though the effect is good, it’s just too slow. 5 mana for a 2 Attack weapon is too high and the fact that it takes 4 turns to get a full value out of it makes it a not so great Hunter weapon. It’s in a position similar to Shaman’s Charged Hammer – it’s good over a long period of time, but the immediate impact is just too low. The only deck I can see this being played in a slower Midrange Hunter or something like a Control Reno Hunter. The second one is incredibly rare sight and first one was nerfed hard with the Call of the Wild change.
This one is a very interesting card. It’s like a Stranglethorn Tiger, but with a big upside. After killing a minion (or well, player too, but in that case it doesn’t matter) it gains the Stealth again. So let’s say you play against Shaman. You drop this and trade into the Totem Golem. Normally, you would have a 5/2 minion with no Stealth, which Shaman could easily take down with Lightning Bolt, Fire Elemental, Spirit Claws etc. But now that 5/2 gains Stealth and if Shaman wants to kill it, he has to expend the AoE removals. This minion has a huge 2 for 1 or even 3 for 1 potential. Definitely amazing in the Arena card, but I’m not sure about Constructed. The thing is – Miracle Rogue isn’t really a minion-based deck. And right now it’s the only Rogue deck that’s viable. I think that this would be great in a more minion-based Rogue deck, but it might even see some play in the good old Miracle (besides the trading factor, it’s a good way to set up the Cold Blood burst if you don’t have Conceal).
I’m really, really hyped for this one. Finally an AMAZING Priest card. It’s very similar to the Dark Cultist which was great. 3/4 for 3 are best stats you can ask for. And then, the Battlecry is very strong + it scales into the mid/late game quite well. Compared to Dark Cultist, it will be a worse 3-drop (because you don’t always have a minion on the board on turn 3), but it will definitely be amazing in the mid/late game. Giving +3 health might immediately boost a trade, get a minion out of removal range or just make it harder to deal with overall. I think this card is really strong and while alone it won’t bring the Priest to being viable, it’s a great step in the right direction.
The first tri-class card showcased. It’s a Kabal card, so it can go into Mage, Priest or Warlock decks. So if you play it in Mage, you might for example discover the Entomb. And in Priest you can discover the Twisting Nether if you feel that you will need some AoE removal soon. The card is very interesting, but I’m not sure how good it will be. On the one hand, it’s Discover and Discover cards are generally strong. Getting to pick a spell for the situation is also good. But the statline – 2/2 for 3 mana – is very questionable. It would be hard to play him in the deck without getting screwed by the high tempo decks.
This is another Reno-like card that promotes “no duplicates” kind of deck building. And while I’m not sure if it would make the archetype good alone, it’s going to be AMAZING in already existing Reno decks. Both RenoLock and RenoMage are a thing, Reno Priest is also possible to make – and this is a card from those 3 classes. This card is great, because it’s very flexible. And I mean it – VERY FLEXIBLE. A custom spell is really a custom potion you brew yourself. You get 3 discover screens back to back. First you pick one of the three mana cost (1, 5 or 10), then you pick the first effect and you end with a second effect. So you can drop him on t4, pick a great spell you might need on t5. Or maybe you already have a t5 play, but you might fit a 1 mana spell somewhere – why not, you can brew something like that too.
They are pushing Taunt Warrior thing again. But Discover cards are always good – for example, Rogue’s Journey Below was played in a lot of different Rogue decks, not only the Deathrattle ones. But unlike Warrior, Rogue can put 1 mana spell to a better use – Combo activator, extra spell for Gadgetzan Auctioneer… In Warrior, it’s most likely just a 1 mana spell. Since Discover cards have a higher chance of discovering class cards, you will see – those aren’t that bad, but there are tons of terrible Neutral Taunts. So I don’t think this is going to be that good.
Those are the card revealed in the opening ceremony. I’ll bring more card reviews to you soon!
Edit: New cards from the HS Panel are here!
7/7 for 6 mana. At the base, it’s a pretty balanced “vanilla” minion. You would never play it any serious deck if not for the fact that there are some cool synergies you might want to try out. E.g. Shadowstep, Shadowcaster or Brann Bronzebeard. I like the last one especially, in the late game it’s 9 mana for 2/4 + 1/1 + 2x 6/6, which is a really nice value and a way to flood your board. Right now I could definitely see it being played in Reno Rogue, but besides that, I’m not sure. Maybe if some more Battlecry synergies come out?
Anti-Aggro card. Basically, it’s only good when enemy has 3 or more minions on the board. At the base it’s a 4/5 Taunt for 5 mana, which is pretty meh. But when you actually get to play it for 3 mana, it’s amazing. I guess it might be a tech card in some metas, for example it’s really good against Zoo. But when you think that Shaman has Thing From Below, even a 3 mana 4/5 Taunt looks pale in comparison.
Auto-include into any Pirate deck. That said, only viable semi-Pirate deck right now is Aggro Warrior. So this deck just got buffed, because not only you get to thin your deck, you also have a free 1/1 Charge Pirate every game. Unless you don’t draw it in your opening hand, of course. Then it’s a weaker Southsea Deckhand. But I think it’s still worth the risk. I don’t think this card alone is going to make Pirate decks viable, but if you plan to play any Pirate deck – this card should probably be an auto-include.
The main question is – does the minion get returned to your hand AFTER it dies or INSTEAD of dying? If it’s the first, Deathrattles will proc and I think this card is really cool. But if it’s the second, I’m not so sure about how viable it is. I mean, you can use it to get an important minion back to your hand. For example, you can something and then play this Secret. It dies, it gets back to your hand and you can use it again. It’s also cool with a big minions with important effects like Emperor Thaurissan or Ragnaros, Lightlord. Enemy uses a lot of stuff to kill it and it just comes back to the hand. And he can’t really ignore it either. So far I’m not so sure about this card, but it seems alright.
It seems like a great draw mechanic in the Aggro Paladin decks. When you run a lot of 1-drops, it’s always drawing 3 for 3 mana, which is good value. The problem is that the value of the cards themselves is pretty meh. I mean, if you cast it somewhere in the early-mid game, it’s still strong. But later in the game, three 1-drops aren’t that insane. It probably takes the same slot as Divine Favor. This is better in fast matchups, where enemy won’t likely have a big hand and tempo is important. But it’s much weaker in slower matchups, where you can milk Divine Favor for a lot more cards + you actually get to draw meaningful mid game cards too. Less risk, but less reward. I think it might find place in Aggro Paladin decks.
This guy is pretty interesting. We don’t have a lot of low mana Legendaries, most of them are big late game guys. So I’m always curious what they will come up with. This card is definitely not broken, but it’s pretty strong against Aggro. Divine Shield + Taunt is a great combination, even on a small minion. We’ve already seen that thanks to another Paladin card – Coghammer. So not only this guy will most likely need to take two hits from the opponent’s minions (or hit + removal), but you will also heal every time it deals damage. Deals damage doesn’t mean attacks – so if it GETS attacked (even by the opponent’s Hero), you get healed. This card is also a buff magnet, if you would play it in some kind of Midrange Paladin deck with Blessing of Kings, you can have a huge guy that gets you back to full more quickly than you can pronounce his name.
The card kinda reminds me of the Jeweled Scarab. 1/1 for 2 mana, so a very understatted body, but you get a discover effect. Obviously, discovering a 3 mana card is more consistent and “on-curve” than getting random card from each of the 3 classes belonging to Grimy Goons gang. But on the other hand, it’s better in the late game. I don’t really like it that much, maybe in some kind of Reno decks that need more cards to fill the slots. Jeweled Scarab was mostly used in the classes that had strong 3 mana cards, this one you can’t really control. You can get something good or you can get something useless.
It’s a weaker version of Shadow Madness… but is it really weaker? It works on minions up to 2 attack instead of 3, but it costs 1 mana instead of 4. That’s a HUGE jump. And Shadow Madness was already a quite common tech, you’ve seen it now and then across the game’s history. This card seems pretty strong if you ask me, but it’s definitely a meta call. It depends on how many 2 attack minions are played, as opposed to 3 attack minions. For example, it might be amazing against Zoo – you can deal with the Imp Gang Boss AND get the 1/1 yourself AND deal 2 damage to something for just 1 mana. It’s also a very cheap spell, so it gets a bonus of Wild Pyromancer and Priest of the Feast combos. I like this card as an one-of, but it will definitely be a meta call.
I’m really super excited for the new expansion. Most of the cards so far seem not only fun, but also pretty balanced. I don’t remember my hype for the expansion being so high in a while.
I really can’t wait to play with those cards. But first, I can’t wait to see all the new cards released. You’ll probably hear from me time and time again, when new cards are announced, and later with my new Brews right after the expansion!
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Good luck on the ladder and until next time!