Master of Evolution – A Bright Future

Cards are being released for Whispers of the Old Gods in Hearthstone. The cards released have gone anywhere from deck defining, controversial, must-craft (for me), and downright horrible. Today a card was released that made me say “Wow.”


What you see is a card that passes the vanilla stat distribution test, and has the ability to ramp up a friendly minion. It is a Chillwind Yeti with a positive effect.It looks to be an auto-include for Shaman decks, and a very excellent choice in the Arena.

What is it good for?

  • Ramping up a minion – Obviously the ability to transform a minion one mana higher will usually result in a better-stated minion. Sometimes you can transform an understated battlecry minion, to make a big leap to the next mana cost. In the next section, I will show how much more you are getting for each ramp.
  • Healing – Sometimes you are trading and have an injured minion that doesn’t have much remaining value. A 6/1 Fire Elemental for example. With the transform, you are not only ramping up a minion, but you are basically healing your injured minion.
  • Fishing for effects – With the RNG of transformation, you never know what you’re getting. You can get a taunt, continuous positive effects, etc.
  • Reach – You could be a little off winning and need a touch of reach. Turn a 7-mana minion into Ragnaros? Turn something into a charge minion?

Benefits of evolution

Here I did some math to determine how much better a minion you are getting when transforming your minions.

The methodology is as stated:

  • I took the average “original minion” attack and health for each mana cost, 0-9. Because the original minion belongs to a Shaman, I only limited the class types to Shaman and Neutral minions.
  • I included the 4 free totems (Searing, Stoneclaw, Healing, Wrath of the Air) as 1-mana, as they are commonly played on the field.
  • Then I took the average “transformed minion” attack and health for each mana cost, 1-10. These minions include all class cards and neutrals.
  • I took the difference from “transformed” minus “original.”
  • The card sets include all of the currently released sets, not including any Old Gods cards.



So typically, you are getting something like 1.5 points of stats higher. Turning a 7-cost into an 8-cost actually could result in a lower attack minion, but much higher health. It looks like transforming a 6 to 7 gives the best jump in stats, almost a +1/+1.


  • Midrange Shaman does not become a thing – Time will tell, but it’s possible that Aggro Shaman remains the only viable type of Shaman deck. That could limit this card being included in decks, though it will remain an elite Arena pick.
  • Mercy of RNG – Of course, you could get a understated minion, like a Antique Healbot from a 4-cost. Such bad outcomes include turning a 1-cost into Doomsayer and turning a 4-cost into Venture Co Mercenary.

All in all, I think this card has a great future. I think it will be a Top 5 card in Old Gods, even after every card is revealed. It just has no downside, and seems great in constructed and arena. Oh, and it is a little fun seeing what you’re getting.


5 thoughts on “Master of Evolution – A Bright Future

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