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Mage

It’s been just short of a month since the Hearthstone Closed Beta patch went live and we’ve seen a flurry of changes in the culture of the game as a result. Rogues are out, as we’ve discussed extensively, and Mages and Priests are in, having received buffs. Hunters, utilizing the Unleash the Hounds combo, along with Paladins, through the used of a number of diverse strategies have also risen to prominence, despite receiving almost little to no buffs. Druids, Shamans and Warlocks, while all seemingly viable, are not as commonly seen in Play Mode, but remain a factor in high tier competitive play. This window, prior to soft release in the form of open beta, seems like a proper time to evaluate the state of the classes, and to decide if more changes need to be made. Those in charge of balancing the various decks have to consider empirical date

After spending a weekend coming up with new and inventive ways to construct decks and repeatedly getting crushed, I came up with a brand new approach: just pick cards I like, and throw 30 of them in a deck. Simple. The result is exactly the kind of deck Zenstyle would hate. It’s a horrifying mishmash of things, running counter to any deck building philosophy. If I learned anything from my co-host, it’s that you come up with a specific strategy, then choose the cards to best support that goal and play style. Instead of pursuing an aggro build, a turtle deck or minion swarm, this deck does none of these things in particular – but you know what? It works and it wins for me. While it may seem that this deck gives you both everything and nothing, I like to think of it as actually being focused on one

 

ZenStyle and the Top Deck Miracles

by Zenstyle on

There’s a certain stigma in card games to profiting as a result of top decking a card. Despite the obvious amount of luck that comes with something like a great starting hand, or getting the right spells and minions in the right sequence, veterans and new players alike shout from on high the dishonor of being ‘lucky’, as opposed to skilled. Regardless of the negativity that’s sometimes associated with it, there’s really nothing more satisfying than seeing the perfect answer pop up in your hand, saving you from certain death. I had a hilarious and amazing experience tonight in the arena, where in, beset by overpowered Blood Imps and a hoard of marauding enemies, my poor Mage deck was forced to dig through card after card in desperate search of Blizzard and Flamestrike. In the process of digging, I would slaughter my own Loot Hoarder, and singe my own Acolyte

 

ManaGrind Tournament Wrap-up: 10/07/13

by Zenstyle on

It’s no secret that we here at BlizzPro are looking forward to a thrilling competitive scene when it comes to Hearthstone. There’s no doubt in our minds that, upon being released to the masses, this game is going to be huge, and the resulting number of players will hopefully lead to a varied, constantly evolving metagame. The reasons to be optimistic are in the polish the game displays in its infancy, along with an intense competitive scene that already exists in closed beta. This competitive scene has been nurtured and developed by a group called ManaGrind since before closed beta, tracing its lineage back to tournaments run on the Cockatrice platform. When it comes to this sort of the thing, they are absolutely the authority. In an effort to join our own analysis to their incredible efforts, BlizzPro will be doing a weekly article discussing the results of the  North

So now that we have the patch notes and what cards are getting changed, let’s take a look at some of the winners and losers and some other changes a little more in depth and how they will affect the game. Winners The “Free” Players – I’ve been trying to think of a term for these players for the last 10 minutes and simply can’t come up with anything. These are basically the people who don’t want to spend any money on the game and want to unlock everything by grinding. Either they like the challenge of doing so or simply can’t afford to put money in to open packs – either is really ok. Now Hearthstone makes it even easier to acquire gold for these players as before you had to basically win 1 game for 1 gold and that felt not fun. Now they have increased it to

 

Hearthstone, while amazing, can present a player with a plethora of difficult conundrums. Given the intended similarities between the CCG and its point of origin, World of Warcraft, the issue of separating ourselves from traditional conventions can be difficult. This is very much apparent when it comes to a mechanic like spell power. We’ve been taught since the release of the MMORPG that  the hallmark of the caster is boosted spell power. Sure, Fireball’s good, but what if it could be made better? It can be, young Mage, it can be. Find yourself some spell power and watch as that torrent of flame deals 8902 damage as opposed to 7103. What’s more, spell power has traditionally been a non-factor for Warriors, Rogues and Hunters. Yet, here we are in the Hearthstone closed beta, where it’s all too common to watch as a Rogue, riding Gadgetzan Auctioneer, deals 18 points of

I feel like Mage should have one minion, and that’s a Water Elemental. Blizzard never asked me sadly, and went ahead and made a few others. Today, we’ll take a look at what’s available and how to combine them, along with the multitude of spells available in order to bring a fiery end to your unworthy foes. Minions Mana Wyrm I’m on the fence about Mana Wyrm. For one energy, the minion enters the field at 0/3 and gains an attack point per spell played. Assuming it survives, the Mage has the means to buff it up to something more reasonable, say 2/3 or 3/3. The problem is, it’s a pretty slow process. Another thing. Yes, it’s a beefy one drop, but without taunt, and with no offensive pressure initially, it can be easily ignored. If you do choose to go with it, just understand the risks. Sorcerer’s Apprentice This

Hot off the heels of our preview of the Priest class, we at BlizzPro are taking a look at another explosive caster class, the Mage. Jaina Proudmoore has been a perpetual victim in the Warcraft universe, but it looks like she’ll get the chance to drop the hurt on her would be opponents in Hearthstone. The Mage deck, despite dealing with the numerous mysteries of the arcane, is actually a bit more straightforward than the Priest deck. It features a fair amount of freeze spells and in general a bunch of high damage nukes. Is it worth playing though? We’ll address that question by first looking at the multitude of spells and abilities available to the Mage deck. Fireblast In the last couple of weeks, we’ve discussed two different hero abilities that feature direct damage. We’ll continue that this week. Fireblast costs two energy and deals a single point of

The Hearthstone team has put out a new Fireside Duel – this time in the form of Jaina vs. Thrall (mage deck vs. shaman deck). Some interesting points in this game – this is the first time we see how the secret cards work. Basically you play them, they cost mana, your opponent sees you have played something but it’s unknown to them what you played. When your opponent does something to trigger the secret card then it activates and says what it does. In the case of this game the card was activated when the opponent attacked with their minion and the effect in place was the player who played the secret got a copy of the minion card that attacked. The shaman deck in this case looks seriously fun to play (if not a bit overpowered) as the random totem ability and his wolf cards are really good.

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