Hearthstone is one week away from launching its newest expansion. The Year of the Phoenix officially begins with Ashes of Outland, which will kick off a new Standard year proper. With the arrival of this new expansion, Blizzard debuts a new playable class and introduces 135 new cards for both Standard and Wild.
Card reveals for Hearthstone: Ashes of Outland have come and gone and now it's just a matter of waiting for the expansion's arrival. So let's make that time go a little faster by taking a look at the cards that are about to debut and giving them a full analysis.
Before we begin the analyses, be sure to check out the cards revealed during last Wednesday's livestream presentation and catch up with our previous entries:
All 63 cards revealed during today's Hearthstone: Ashes of Outland livestream
Hearthstone: Ashes of Outland card analyses (Part 1)
Hearthstone: Ashes of Outland card analyses (Part 2)
Hearthstone: Ashes of Outland card analyses (Part 3)
Fill your hand with random Mage spells At the end of your turn, discard them.
Analysis: An outstanding Legendary Mage spell that's going to see a lot of play in just about every Mage deck. It fits in like a glove with the new Spell Mage deck, but it can also fit nicely into Tempo Mage or Highlander Mage. Pair this thing with one or two Sorcerer's Apprentices and get the most out of this.
(4) Maiev Shadowsong (4/3)
Battlecry: Choose a minion. It goes Dormant for 2 turns.
Analysis: Maiev can be handy in more ways than one. If there's a high-value target on the other side, buy yourself some time by making it go Dormant for a few turns. Likewise, if you have a high-value minion that you're hoping gets a lot of play, protect it against area-of-effect spells by making it immune to removal. Maiev may not be a top-tier Legendary, but there's going to be uses here.
(5) Apexis Blast
Deal 5 damage. If your deck has no minions, summon a random 5-Cost minion.
Analysis: Here's another candidate for the Spell Mage, which should more often than not leave a strong 5/5 minion on your side of the board. It should only be used in a Spell Mage deck or in the late game when there's little to nothing left in reserve, otherwise it's an underpowered spell. Although it's not terrible if it gets discounted off a Quest Mage effect.
(2) Apexis Smuggler (2/3)
After you play a Secret, Discover a spell.
Analysis: This isn't quite Shadowjeweler Hanar, but it's a decent 99 Cent Store version of it for the Mage player. If you're packing Secrets, this can help you find some fresh spells. It really only works well if you have Secrets on your person, so if you don't, then at the very least, it's a decent 2/3 vanilla minion for Arena.
(2) Imprisoned Vilefiend (3/5)
Type: Minion - Demon
Dormant for 2 turns. Rush
Analysis: On top of class-based Imprisoned Demons, here's a Neutral one. What makes this an above-average pick is that it gets Rush the moment it wakes up. It won't go in too many constructed decks, but if you get it off a random effect or find it in Arena, it's a solid pick.
(4) Magtheridon (12/12)
Type: Minion - Demon
Dormant. Battlecry: Summon three 1/3 enemy Warders. When they die, destroy all minions and awaken.
Analysis: Alright, let's take a much closer look at this guy.
Let's forget that it's a 12/12 for a minute. Look at it as a card that summons three 1/3 minions. Not for you, but for your opponent. Alright, maybe that's not so great, especially if you haven't established any sort of board presence in the early game.
On top of that, Magtheridon won't be going to an A-tier because there are ways to get around this. For example, Shamans have Plague of Murlocs to completely remove the summoning condition. The Rogue can simply Shadowstep and never summon the 1/3 again. Or there are other similar transformation effects that clever players can put into use.
The other thing to think about it, this is nooooo good if it gets resurrected, because the Magtheridon will get resurrected as a Dormant minion with no means to awaken it. So be cautious about putting this in something like a Priest deck or a Warlock deck, both of which have various resurrection effects packed in. If it comes back, it's a totally dead play and eats up a slot on the board permanently.
There are going to be cool uses of this thing if it shows up as a random drop, so at least that's something to watch out for.
(2) Imprisoned Felmaw (5/4)
Type: Minion - Demon
Dormant for 2 turns. When this awakens, attack a random enemy.
Analysis: So the Hunter's Imprisoned Demon has better stats than the Imprisoned Vilefiend we talked about earlier. But the primary difference here is that this thing has slightly better stats and will attack a random target when it wakes up. This could work to help clear the board or it could put pressure on the opponent's face. I wouldn't anticipate seeing too much of this guy in a constructed deck, but the Felmaw isn't terrible on its own.
(2) Sethekk Veilweaver (2/3)
After you cast a spell on a minion, add a Priest spell to your hand.
Analysis: It's easy to misread this guy. This does not say, "cast a spell on a friendly minion," it's simply cast a spell on a minion. So any single-target removal of an enemy minion will give you a fresh Priest spell. As a tempo Turn 2 play, this is great and as a tool for the late game, it's even better. If you're already playing a deck with spells like Penance, Grave Rune, and Forbidden Words, you might as well pack this guy into your deck, too.
(5) Shattered Rumbler (4/6)
Type: Minion - Elemental
Battlecry: If you cast a spell last turn, deal 2 damage to all other minions.
Analysis: Here's a 5-drop with decent 4/6 stats, but the draw here is that it acts as a mini-Abyssal Enforcer. But that effect isn't something I would necessarily count on. Two damage won't clear off most opposing minions but can prove to be a hindrance to your own. So I wouldn't expect to see much of this guy in established Shaman decks, whatever they may end up looking like in this crazy, post-Shudderwock world.
(4) Mok'Nathal Lion (5/2)
Type: Minion - Beast
Rush. Battlecry: Choose a friendly minion. Gain a copy of its Deathrattle.
Analysis: Ooh! Here's a cool new addition for the Hunter player. That health stat is concerning, but it doesn't matter, because this is a Rush minion that's mainly meant to trade in to other minions. And because it can Rush in with a friendly Deathrattle in place, it means that there's little the opposing player can do to stop it. A great addition to the mid-game.
(9) Ysiel Windsinger (5/5)
Your spells cost (1).
Analysis: Check out the inverse of Aviana. Instead of your minions costing (1), your spells will cost (1) instead. That means you can play this on Turn 10 with room for a 1-Cost Nourish, which can then transition right to a 1-Cost Hidden Oasis. The Quest Druid will love this. Just remember not to plan to add Innervate to any of these combos, because Ysiel will actually increase its cost to (1).
And if you're playing Wild, doesn't a 1-Cost Ultimate Infestation just sound delicious?
That's all for now. We'll be looking at the rest of the new expansion's cards as its release date approaches. Hearthstone: Ashes of Outland releases on April 7.