The End of the Year of the Mammoth
Exciting changes are coming to Hearthstone as we say farewell to the Year of the Mammoth!
With the start of the year of the Raven, the following expansion sets will no longer be available in the standard format:
- Whispers of the Old Gods
- One Night in Karazhan
- Mean Streets of Gadgetzan
All of them will soon be wild exclusive.
On top of this, we will also be seeing Ice Block, Coldlight Oracle and Molten giant (in its pre-nerf form, back to 20 mana base cost) be moved to the Hall of Fame making them wild exclusive as well.
With these changes, a lot of archetypes will disappear and open the way for new decks to rise. The most notable decks that will be leaving standard are the following:
- Dragon Priest due to the loss of Drakonid Operative, Netherspite Historian, Potion of Madness and Kabal Talonpriest.
- Secret Mage, which loses Kabal Lackey, Medivh’s Valet, Kabal Crystal Runner as well as Potion of Madness.
- Murloc Paladin, Losing Grimscale Chum, Vilefin Inquisitor, and Rallying blade.
Here you can find also a Really Interesting Guide on how you can get some free arcane dust out of the Year of the Mammoth end!
With Mean Streets leaving the standard format, this removes all types of Jade from the meta of which Jade druid, the more popular one, and Jade Shaman will no longer be playable in the standard format.
What deck will you be missing most when these cards rotate out next expansion?
Players will no longer have to rely on 3rd party websites with their ongoing issues or worry about opponents changing their decks throughout the tournament.
This shows that the Hearthstone developing team at Blizzard might finally care more about the competitive environment, with this being developed and considering all the improvements they are making to the HCT format this year.
Thank you, Blizzard!
With the Year of the Raven announcement, they also announced a new Druid hero, Lunara.
To unlock the new hero Lunara, all you have to do is win 10 games in Hearthstone on Standard Ranked or Casual mode after the expansion launches later this year.
Another thing mentioned in the blog post is that once Lunara enters the game you will no longer be able to unlock Maiev Shadowsong which was introduced last year with the start of Year of the Mammoth, so make sure to unlock him if you haven’t yet!
With the next Hearthstone patch, there will be a lot of changes coming to the Arena!
One of the biggest changes will be to the way you draft cards starting from the next expansion. At its current state, the cards in Arena that are available to draft are based on a card rarity system, which often leaves you with certain picks just being stronger than the others regardless of your draft.
In the new system, the cards will be offered on a more “power level” based system. We at Boosting Ground really like the idea, but it remains to be seen how accurate blizzard’s ratings for cards actually are.
Starting in the new Hearthstone patch 10.4 the first, 10th, 20th and final pick of your arena draft will be guaranteed to be a rarity of Rare or above.
Nothing is mentioned about the power level of these picks yet.
On top of that, there will no longer be an increased chance to draft cards from the newest expansion (for now) which we expect to be until the next expansion releases.
Arena Unique Cards
Probably the biggest and most exciting change is all the new Arena Unique cards that will be coming very soon! Each class has one new exciting card to use.
Paladin: Hand of Salvation
1 mana Secret “When your second minion dies in a turn, return it to life.”
In itself, the card isn’t that strong, but it can make a great impact played wisely.
The card’s main use will be through cards like Hydrologist or used together with the occasional Mad Scientist or Mysterious challenger.
Only if the arena remains in the Wild format.
If it reverts to the standard format as it is planned, this card will likely never get picked and thus won’t see any play.
Mage: Polymorph: ???
5 mana “Choose a minion. Discover a new minion to transform it into.”
I know many of you are fans of the discover effect. While the mana cost is a bit high in the end the flexibility of this card for arena could be quite useful.
2 Mana “For the rest of the game, your Hero Power can target minions.”
This is by no means a weak card! Getting the ability to target minions with a 2 damage hero power can be extremely effective in an arena environment.
Druid: Nature’s Champion
3 Mana “Return a friendly minion to your hand and give it +5/+5.”
These kinds of effects are incredibly powerful and some would even say that this card will see play if it was printed in the standard format.
Most definitely an often pick due to the stats it offers, no randomness involved with it either.
Warrior: Blazing Longsword
3 Mana “Also damages minions next to whomever your hero attacks.”
Not a lot to say about this card. It’s strong but not game-breaking. It will make some of the other weapon-buff cards a bit better and will definitely show up whenever you face a warrior in the arena.
Warlock: Bottled Madness
0 mana “Replace your hand with random Demons.”
This card is very hard to judge since it only replaces the cards in your hand. Its random nature probably will leave the card too weak to be a high priority pick. It will definitely give you grounds to make a great story, considering the things this card could leave you with.
Shaman: Crackling Doom
0 Mana “Deal 12 damage to all minion. Overload: (10)”
Regardless of its incredibly high overload cost, this card is immensely powerful.
With card draw being much more of a rarity in Arena, a card that can “for free” allow you to make a complete board swing is incredible.
Being able to remove all of your opponent's threats if you are behind on the board and loading it up on your turn is so powerful...
Even if you lose a turn for it, board swings are hard to come by, so played in the right conditions, it's super strong!
Rogue: Smoke Bomb
1 mana “Give a minion Stealth until your next turn. Draw a card.”
On a first glance, this card is already fantastic. A 1 mana Stealth is reasonable, on top of it, it draws a card which is even better!
Looking into it more, it doesn’t specify friendly or enemy minion, which means you can also use this card to bypass enemy taunt minions!
This card will likely be picked every single time it’s offered in the arena and will put the rogue class in a much better spot!
Priest: Generous Spirit
2 mana: “Choose a friendly minion. Give it to your opponent and draw 3 cards.”
Once more a very strong card with many uses.
Giving your opponent a weak minion and refilling the cards in your hand. Likely the best time to use this would be before you are about to use one of your board clears.
Another use of this card is to give your opponents minions they wouldn’t normally want, this card’s synergy with doomsayer is undeniable.
In a more common scenario, you can use it as a way to overdraw your opponent with card draw minions or Northshire Cleric.
If you ever feel the need to score higher ranks in the arena make sure to check our Arena Boosting Services our boosters will be more than happy to offer you some tips on improving your picks and gameplay.
Quest Reward Buffs
Last but not forgotten, with the upcoming year of the Raven, quests will be seeing a small buff!
A pattern that Hearthstone has followed slowly over the years into making quests easier and quicker to complete. The idea behind this is to make Quests feel less like a chore and more as a way to enjoy different aspects of the game.
Still, if you ever get tired of doing daily quests and farming gold you can always come to us for our Daily Quests & Gold Farm Boosting Service
All quests currently awarding 40 gold will be buffed to give 50 gold and some of the longer quests will be completed faster.
Only the Mighty (play 20 minions that cost 5 or more) Will now be 12 minions only!
Class Victory’s wins will be lowered from 2 to 1!
Class Mastery will be lowered to play 30 cards of a certain class from 50 and the quest rewards being untouched.
Between the set rotation shaping up the standard mode, the massive changes coming to the arena, the new quest buffs and the tournament mode finally entering beta.
There is something out there for every hearthstone player. Let's hope the Year of the Raven will be just what Hearthstone needs!