Karazhan Review (Neutral) - Episode 77

August 30, 2016
00:0000:00

Hello!

  • Scott is on the show this week
  • Topic: Karazhan Neutral Card reviews!
  • Reasons to be happy this week
  • News: Karazhan is out!

Review Scoring Guide (NEW!)

Hearthstone KAR Common

Neutral Cards – Common

Arcane Anomaly

  • Scott says: Low-impact. If I’m going to play a 1-drop minion, I want it to have more impact or at least some synergy. A (very) poor man’s Mana Wyrm
  • Josh says: I’ll go one step further: this is bad. Very high-risk (dies to half the hero powers), very low-reward (2-damage yawn).
  • Arena Score: 2
  • Constructed Score: 3

Runic Egg

  • Josh says: I wouldn’t play this for 0 mana, and would have to think about it at -1 mana.
  • Scott says: I don’t get it. At best, I work hard to get it to… Almost break even? I get my card back, but not my mana or those few minutes of my life.
  • Arena Score: 0
  • Constructed Score: 0

Netherspite Historian

  • Scott says: In a dragon deck, seems really good. Small mana premium for the ability, but huge upside. And a Neutral! This feels pushed to keep Dragon decks relevant.
  • Josh says: Deceptively strong. Always have to think about what you’re drawing with Discover. Dragons tend to be big, very strong, and often unique. Late-game gold.
  • Arena Score: 1
  • Constructed Score: 4

Pompous Thespian

  • Josh says: Can trade up, but will most often just break even or a little under. Seems like solid vanilla.
  • Scott says: Agreed. Solid vanilla. From a strictly stats perspective, I feel like it’s a good value. But from a configuration perspective, not as much. Less than the sum of its parts.
  • Arena Score: 3
  • Constructed Score: 1

Pantry Spider

  • Scott says: Beast keyword helps it. Some decks just want lots of minions, and this gets there. Low-impact, but good for beast and/or swarm decks.
  • Josh says: I can’t follow you into this charge, Scott. 1-attack is just so underwhelming. You’ll likely trade both into the same minion just to deal 2 damage.
  • Arena Score: 3
  • Constructed Score: 3

Violet Illusionist

  • Josh says: Extremely interesting in Warrior control/attrition. Guaranteed one effect, and that’s all it takes to make it worthwhile. Lots of upside.
  • Scott says: Agreed. Warlock can get some mileage from him too. In a self-harm warlock deck, he might actually make a big difference. Not sure it’ll see much play, but should always prevent a few damage over the course of a game in the right deck.
  • Arena Score: 3
  • Constructed Score: 3

Zoobot

  • Scott says: This card may skate under the radar, but has the potential to provide the overlooked value of a card like Houndmaster. It is a bit win-more, as you’re more likely to have more minions when you’re ahead. Feels like a rare case of a strong archetype anchor in neutral. It’s hilarious that it’s a mech.
  • Josh says: Deceptively strong. Think it will do well in any murloc, Dragon, or beast deck — particular zoo/aggro. One proc is good enough. Shattered Sun Cleric for the modern meta.
  • Arena Score: 2
  • Constructed Score: 4

Arcanosmith

  • Josh says: Am I wrong for preferring to just get a 3/5 body with taunt at this cost(Sen’jin Shieldmasta)? The 0/5 taunt feels like a throwaway.
  • Scott says: Hard to know how to judge this. Decks that want lots of minions will likely prefer this. And while the 0/5 will fall over quickly, the 3/2 can survive to attack. Strangely, I think this is an aggro-leaning taunt card.
  • Arena Score: 2
  • Constructed Score: 2

Menagerie Magician

  • Scott says: This is hard to evaluate. If you have coverage of 2 of the types, this is really, really good. But that’s a pretty tall order. Getting coverage of 1 type will be the most common scenario, and you may need to work a bit to even get that. Higher cost also means harder to combo. It’s also a little bit of a win-more card, since you’re more likely to have more cards on the table if you’re ahead.
  • Josh says: I agree. This sort of effect has diminishing effects as you get higher up the cost scale. Getting 2 bonus stats is less impressive when you paid 5 instead of 3. The penalty for whiffing is higher, AND you’re going to run into a lot of competition for top-notch dragons and beasts up in this cost range! Zoobot is better.
  • Arena Score: 2
  • Constructed Score: 2

Hearthstone KAR Rare

Neutral Cards – Rare

Avian Watcher

  • Scott says: You’d better be playing a secret-heavy deck if you’re playing this card. Just plain bad if it doesn’t trigger.
  • Josh says: Seems like a really low payoff (slightly above vanilla) for something that’s hard to guarantee outside of Ice Block.
  • Arena Score: 1
  • Constructed Score: 3

Book Wyrm

  • Josh says: As a rule, I generally dislike cards with 2 conditionals — especially if you can’t control one of them. That said, it’s similar to Stampeding Kodo, which saw high-level play despite hitting smaller targets and being random. There’s gotta be more potential here than I’m seeing.
  • Scott says: This charges you 2 mana for the ability, so it’d better fire with a worthwhile target to be worth it.
  • Arena Score: 1
  • Constructed Score: 3

Moat Lurker

  • Scott says: I love the versatility of this ability, but it comes at a huuuuge cost premium (3.5 mana). Most at home with deathrattle minions and shenanigans. (Cairne, Sylvanas, N’Zoth, Ancestral Spirit, Princess Huhuran.) Dat cost premium tho.
  • Josh says: Brilliant fun. So many potential uses for defense and offense. Works as a “heal” like Evolve does. But I agree that it’s too risky. It’s easy for me to best-case-scenario this, but when it comes to actually building a deck, I’ve found that I’m consistently avoiding it.
  • Arena Score: 2
  • Constructed Score: 3

Hearthstone KAR Epic

Neutral Cards – Epic

Arcane Giant

  • Scott says: Requires a very high spell density to be good, and even then, only in the later game. Can’t really be cheated out early like some other minions. You’re casting it late no matter what — the only question is whether you saved some mana.
  • Josh says: Mages just got a little more obnoxious. This guy is a powerhouse minion that gives massive late-game oomf to the spell-heavy decks like mage. The big difference between this and other big 8/8s is that you can cast a bunch of spells AND play this for 0 on the same turn to keep up tempo.
  • Arena Score: 1
  • Constructed Score: 4

Hearthstone KAR Legendary

Neutral Cards – Legendary

Moroes

  • Scott says: I really want to like this guy, but he’s got a lot going against him. Must survive 3+ turns to turn a profit, and that’s a bit of a danger sign. Good luck playing against warrior.
  • Josh says: Fun idea, but there are enough AOE/randomized pings to make me steer clear. (Fun fact: he was undead in the raid, but alive here. WHAT HAPPENED?)
  • Arena Score: 1
  • Constructed Score: 1

Barnes

  • Josh says: Worst case: 4/5 for 4 across 2 bodies. Best case is near-instant-win. Sylvanas, Tirion, Northshire Cleric. Grabbing anything with deathrattle or a passive effect makes this card insane value. There is so much strategy and fun packed into this card, I think it’s the high-water mark for design in this set.
  • Scott says: Priest and Rogue both have fun decks that work well with it. You need to be careful about what you put into the deck, though. Lots of room for fun shenanigans. And maybe a use for Purify since you can silence these to restore their full stats?
  • Arena Score: 4
  • Constructed Score: 5

Prince Malchezaar

  • Scott says: Pure vanilla stats, so his ability is ‘free’. The question is: Is the ability a net positive? In Arena, likely yes. In Constructed, likely no. I will say, if people like Elise so much, why wouldn’t Machezaar be better? (I think neither is good.)
  • Josh says: Awful. Dilutes the card pool, and there are a LOT of bad Legendaries. This card is for the dust-poor who simply must play every Legendary before they die. Elise doesn’t dilute your card pool or strip out your chosen cards until AFTER the payoff hits with the giant taunt monkey idol gold thingy. This guy sabotages your deck before the game even starts. It has all the downsides of Elise without any reliable upside.
  • Arena Score: 3
  • Constructed Score: 1

The Curator

  • Josh says: How many does he have to draw before you’re happy? I could see a two-tribe deck working well (beast druid with some high-end dragons?) and loving this card. Gotta use it like King’s Elekk in Yogg’n’Load to draw specific targets from a very limited pool of options in your deck.
  • Scott says: 2 mana premium for the ability. Agreed that 2-tribe is probably enough. I could see putting Murloc Knights or Sir Finley in the right deck too. I wonder how much natural coverage you’d get in an average arena deck without trying.
  • Arena Score: 1
  • Constructed Score: 3

Medivh, the Guardian

  • Scott says: The staff is pretty cool, and I love that they finally gave non-weapon classes something to do with their weapon slot. Could work well in Rogue? Not sure how good it’ll be. Seems much better in Arena.
  • Josh says: Cool effect, but is definitely slow. Can tempo mage afford to take a slow turn after they’ve built up an advantage in the early and mid game? With Arcane Golem, there are some fun incentives for something like Freeze mage to try to end via huge creatures at the end.
  • Arena Score: 3
  • Constructed Score: 4

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