Kara Out! A Look at 2 RNG Cards

I painstakingly stayed up last night to watch the Hearthstone reveal, which turned out to be what most were expecting, a Karazhan adventure called “One Night in Karazhan.” Only 7 cards out of 45 were revealed for the adventure, but 2 RNG-based cards caught my eye, Firelands Portal and to a much lesser extent, Ivory Knight. Let’s look at the numbers and see how good these cards really are.

Firelands Portal

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This is an eSports portal with more predictable results, limiting to 5-drops. A cursory view of this card is saying you’re paying 2 mana for 5 damage, and getting fair value for the 5-cost minion. But this is wrong!

Standard
Attack 4.19
Defense 4.69
Wild
Attack 4.13
Defense 4.68

The table shows the average attack and defense of the current 5-drops in the game. Very similar numbers of a minion having a near-vanilla 5-drop stat points, like Chillwind Yeti. Whatever 5-drops coming from the new adventure would likely be a drop in the bucket to affect these averages too much.

Battlecry 33%
Taunt 9%
Inspire 9%
Charge 4%

This table is more telling. 1/3 of your outcomes will be battlecry minions, meaning you are not getting battlecry from the summon, and you will be left with an under-stated minion. This is the main downfall of Firelands Portal. Getting a Faceless Manipulator (3/3), or Ram Wrangler (3/3), or BGH (4/2), with no battlecry. On the flipside, you could get Earth Elemental (7/8, taunt). Otherwise, taunts and inspires come up a good amount. Important to note that Firelands Portal costs 7, meaning you can inspire the same turn after Turn 9. Your rare chargers have a good chance to be big time reach with Leeroy Jenkins and Doomguard.

So is Firelands Portal good? Yes. It will practically kill most 0-6 drops with 5 damage and leave something on the board. Just don’t expect that minion to be too valuable. With that said, it looks to be a better arena than constructed card, because Mages just need more good common cards in the arena. (/sarcasm)

Ivory Knight

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The more boring card I will spend less time on is the Paladin card above. You’re basically paying a 2+ mana anti-tempo to discover a Paladin spell, and heal yourself for that value. A unique mechanic I must say, and I dig the chess theme.

Wild 2.94
Standard 3.04

The average costs for Paladin spells sit around 3. So you’re healing 3 and getting a 3-cost spell.

Secret 26%
Buff 23%
Destruction 13%
Card Draw 13%

The percentages in the table above aren’t exactly accurate, as discover allows you to pick from 3 cards. 26% of Paladin spells are 1-cost secrets, with most of them being bad. Paladin buffs on the other hand are typically OP cards. Some form of damage and destruction (Enter the Coliseum) and card draw cards are also other outcomes.

So is this card good? It’s hard to tell at the moment. In the arena, it is card advantage of getting a good spell. Just not sure if the big cost of a 6-drop is worth it.

In the coming days, the rest of the cards will be leaked. Excited to see the rest.

Paladin Arena: Liadrin Joins the Struggle

Last week, I spent two days playing WoW in order to obtain my Lady Liadrin Paladin skin. I did obtain her, but was continually not offered Paladin in the Arena. I notoriously don’t play Paladin as a Ranked class (2 wins), so I needed a Paladin Arena selection to debut Liadrin.

Decklist

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  • A red carpet debut for Liadrin, with two legendaries in Tirion and Fjola. Unlike many other 2 legendary drafts, which don’t work well, both of these cards are pretty good. Tirion could be the most valuable card of any in the Arena.
  • I spent the first 20 picks or so drafting for value, and had a huge glut of 4 drops. My last 10 picks was catch up in drafting early game. I had to make awkward picks like Gadgetzan Jouster over Boulderfist Ogre.
  • This deck has a little bit of everything it seems. Some removal, some AoE, some buffs, some secrets, some weapons, some taunts. Card draw could be an issue, as I just have Hammer of Wrath and Tomb Spider.

Games (now on YouTube!)

  1. Paladin – Coin – 1-0 – A weird game in that I never really won control of the board. I was just ahead through the game and was able to be aggressive to close the game out. Ashbringer from Tirion came through for some face damage.
  2. Paladin – Coin – 1-1 – I got in an awkward spot Turn 8 when I was forced to trade a 8/5 Frost Ele into a 6/1 Lord of the Arena. I burned out due to lack of card advantage and was overrun by Murlocs.
  3. Paladin – 1st – 1-2 – I made the face turn up 30-10, but it was a turn too early. Like the last game, I was topdecking and overrun by Murlocs.
  4. Hunter – 1st – 2-2 – I was mostly in control in the game, and a Tomb Spidered- Maexxna was useful.
  5. Rogue – Coin – 3-2 – A 4 minute blowout in which I had the board right away and had tempo to put stuff out every turn.
  6. Druid – 1st – 4-2 – A game where a lot of taunts were put out on the board, but Tirion ended the game.
  7. Mage – Coin – 5-2 – The mage had no answers in board clears to clear my minions.
  8. Mage – 1st – 5-3 – A 16 turn affair where I just threw the game away. The mage had a lot of spells to remove my minions. Instead of trying to take the board, I kept hitting face and put pressure. My opponent’s Cult Master helped draw enough to beat me.

Upshot

  • Was too greedy throughout the arena run, where trading could’ve helped. The double good legendary draft must have wrecked me with power.
  • Tirion is as good as advertised, but he is not immune to a board of Murlocs.
  • Card cycling is important, and it was a big downfall of this deck.
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Murloc destroys Tirion

12 Win Paladin – Praise the Lord (RNGesus)

Given my baffling inability to play Paladin, I was glad to get back to 12 wins. While I played well for the most part in this run, I did not deserve to get 12 wins. I will try to highlight all the times I won the benefit of adverse probability to pull off the 12 wins.

Decklist

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  • I personally don’t own a Ragnaros, so it was a pleasure to use it. I chose him over a pick of Deathwing and Ysera.
  • The draft took me this way, and I benefited much from the plethora of card draw. There are 7 cards that help card advantage, and I only had 1 game where there was topdecking going on. Very underlooked.
  • I was offered Equality, giving me the chance of the sexy Equality + Consecration combo, but I didn’t like the chances and took the Argent Lance.

Games

  • Paladin – 1st – 1-0 – I had the board for a good 7 turns and was doing some face damage until my opponent put bigger things out. I used MCT to steal the Mukla’s Champion, and subsequently had the opponent MCT my Amani Berseker. Jeweled Scarab got me another MCT, to which I stole a 6/7 Emperor Cobra in Turn 12.
  • Priest – Coin – 2-0 – My opponent never had the board, and I did, so the game was over by Turn 7. Keeper of Uldaman helped a little in controlling the board.
  • Shaman – Coin – 3-0 – My opponent was aggressive with a boosted Gadgetzan Jouster and Micro Machine, but my Argent Lance helped control the board a little. In an evolution of my gameplay, I used Aldor Peacekeeper on a 4/4 Ogre Brute, just to preserve my minion (Spellbreaker (4/3) on the board, when trading. I was able to deal with some big threats like Earth Elemental and Force-Tank Max. MCT stole me a 5/2 Arcane Golem, to which I boosted to clear the tank.
  • Paladin – 1st – 4-0 – A 16-turn game, so a long one. MCT stole a 2/1 Squire for his first failed steal. I was consistently losing the board, but was winning the card advantage game. I guess my opponent was losing patience and threw their entire hand out on the board on Turn 11. It was a pure topdeck game by Turn 13, and just a lot more trading. Opponent puts out Tirion Fordring on Turn 15. I get Cult Master, and trade into a Aldor Peacekeeper. My Evil Heckler taunt stood up to protect me from hits.
  • Paladin – Coin – 5-0 – A game that involved a lot of trading, as evidenced by a 29-29 score by Turn 9. MCT stole a Silver Hand Regent, so it was good, but not amazing. I had pure card advantage, and threw out Ragnaros for his debut in Turn 9. Ragnaros his face a good few times, before getting killed off, but I had enough on the board to win.
  • Rogue – Coin – 6-0 – Another very competitive game, which lasted 12 turns. My opponent had some Mech Rogue thing going on early (Iron Sensei too) for board presence. In my evolved gameplay, I used Aldor Peacekeeper on a 3/4 Spider Tank. After the mechs died, the Rogue starts playing Crowd Favorite, and a ton of battlecry minions, eventually buffing it to 10 attack. Cult Master won me the game here, as I had pure card advantage. Ragnaros showed up to help close the game. MCT stole a 1/1 Boar out of BM.
  • Mage – 1st – 6-1 – A 19-turn slugfest, in which I played an attrition Mage. I got Flamestruck on consecutive Turns 10 and 11, and then an Arcane Explosion on 12. My opponent was doing some Gorillabot shenanigans with Duplicate, giving them a good cycling of cards through discover. I put out Ragnaros out of desperation but died immediately to a Flame Lance. I was just exhausted and was out of resources by my concede.

I decided to go to sleep and continue the next day.

  • Druid – 1st – 7-1 – I was getting SMOrced, as evidenced to the 28-9 score in Turn 8. While opponent wasn’t particularly trading much, I was able to control the board. Cult Master was big, as I was able to cycle a lot of cards through trading.
  • Mage – Coin – 8-1 – With one Consecration in the deck, I had to resort to putting stuff out on the board just to get hit, to wear my opponent down. This happened a bit here, when I was down on the board. And I was able to use Consecration, when it counted most. My MCT stole a 6/3 Ethereal Conjurer. The game dragged on for a while, until I  was able to draw Argent Commander for lethal.

I watched the Steelers – Bengals football game. The final stretch to 12!

  • Rogue – Coin – 9-1 – The replay disappeared. But there was the highlight where Ragnaros was silenced and swung for lethal.
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Ragnaros saves up his hits to hit extra hard.
  • Paladin – 1st – 10-1 – Lost the replay, but it was a competitive 15-turn game that involved Murloc Knights, blessings and secrets. I somehow overcame it all.
  • Mage – 1st – 10-2 – Lost the replay, but the game only lasted 5 minutes. I attempted to use a Tinkmaster Overspark to transform a 6/4 Piloted Sky Golem, but I only turned my minion into a 1/1 Squirrel.
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Go squirrel!
  • Rogue – Coin – 11-2 – The run should have ended right here. This 13-turn game ended with the screenshot below. I had 8 life, while my opponent had a 3/3 SI:7, 4/4 Anubisath Sentinel, 3/4 Unearthed Raptor (with Anubisath deathrattle), along with a 7/7 Eerie Statue (can’t attack). Option 1 would have been to kill the Anubisath Sentinel, and hope for a 33% chance to buff the Eerie Statue, allowing me to potentially survive the turn. I went with Option 2, kill the SI:7, play Elven Archer to hit face, and hope Ragnaros hits face. I went with a 25% chance play vs a 33% chance play. The rest is history.
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eSports! glory chaser
  • Rogue – Coin – 12-2 – Hey, the replays back! A 10 turn game, but only lasted 5 minutes. I was losing the board, but had pure card advantage. I discovered a Deathlord, which helped protect my 6 HP. MCT stole a 5/5 Frost Elemental, and a bunch of Seal of Champions allowed me to trade effectively and put out big stuff on the board.

Stray notes

  • My 5th Lightforge Key, 2nd with Paladin. I didn’t save the screenshot, but I got 250 gold, 2 TGT packs, and a gold Lance Carrier.
  • Card advantage won me a lot of games. I appreciate Gnomish Inventor and Cult Master a lot more now.
  • I learned to be not greedy with Aldor Peacekeeper and Keeper of Uldaman. I learned to let the situation dictate the play. I can’t say how many times Aldor Peacekeeper on a 3 or 4 attack minion helped me preserve a minion.
  • I also think I learned how to play Questing Adventurer. He helped a lot just as a 3/3 or 4/4 for board presence. No greed here.
  • I’m so glad I picked Ragnaros over Deathwing.
  • MCT stole more good things than bad things. He stole a lot of things.
  • I got friend-requested 2 times in this run, with both people not cussing me out and unfriending me. Yay humanity!