New Hearthstone Un’Goro reveals: Here come the dinosaurs

In a livestream today, Blizzard revealed 11 new cards from the upcoming Journey to Un’Goro set slated for release in early April… and the fanbase went wild. You know what that sound is? That’s the sound of the meta being turned on its head. It’s also the sound of dinosaurs! Let’s take a look.

Gentle Megasaur

4 Mana 5/4 Epic Neutral Beast Minion

Battlecry: Adapt your Murlocs

Our Take: We actually missed this card in the first reveal. It’s somewhat interesting, giving a random power to Murloc decks, but Murloc decks are already pretty weak and the random nature of the adapt mechanic probably won’t do enough to push them into the meta without more support.

Explore Un’Goro

2 Mana Epic Warrior Spell

Replace your deck with copies of “Discover a card (1 mana spell)”

Our Take: This is another one of those goofy cards like Renounce Darkness that probably won’t see a lot of play, but that everyone will experiment with. It has some interesting combos with Gadgetzan Auctioneer, but that takes a lot of setup and essentially makes your entire deck cost 1 mana more. Overall, I don’t see this being used in any capacity except for, maybe, a way to exchange out useless cards at the end of a control warrior match that went to fatigue.

Tortollan Shellraiser

4 Mana 2/6 Common Priest Minion

Taunt

Deathrattle: Give a random friendly minion +1/+1

Our Take: Dragon Priest is losing the amazing 4 Mana 3/6 Taunt Twilight Guardian, and this will naturally take its place. While a 2/6 is nowhere near as good as a 3/6, the extra +1/+1 buff gives you essentially 3/7 of stats, which is technically better than Twilight Guardian and doesn’t require dragon synergy. I wholly expect this to be played in every mid-range or control Priest archetype in the future, especially since it has synergy with the Priest’s Deathrattle quest.

Lakkari Sacrifice

1 Mana Legendary Warlock Spell

Quest: Discard 5 cards.

Reward: Nether Portal

Nether Portal

5 Mana Legendary Warlock Spell

Open a permanent portal that summons 3/2 imps

Our Take: Permanents are a new type of object in Hearthstone. They take up a space on your board, have no mana cost, cannot be targeted, cannot be destroyed, and basically cannot be interacted with in any way. Once a permanent is out, you have it forever.

This permanent generates two 3/2 imps on either side of it every turn. That’s an absurd 6/4 value for free, infinitely, every turn of the game, and there is nothing your opponent can do about it. It seems like this would be an insane play on turn five, but there is just no way you can actually discard that many cards by then, which is actually this card’s major problem. By the time you discard five cards, the game will have already entered its late stages, and the only discard themed Warlock deck is Zoolock, which aims to win in the early stages. This also causes Zoolock to pass up its turn 1 play, which might be crippling. Maybe a more control-oriented discard-based Warlock can be created, but that seems unlikely. There’s a high possibility someone somewhere will break this card, but until we see the rest of the cards in Un’Goro I’m going to say that this won’t see play.

Lakkari Felhound

4 Mana 3/8 Common Warlock Demon Minion

Taunt

Battlecry: Discard two random cards

Our Take: Hey look! It’s more support for the Warlock quest! Lakkari Felhound has very impressive stats for a 4 drop. However, it also causes you to discard two random cards on turn 4, which basically wipes your hand for the rest of the game. I don’t see this being played without Malchezaar’s Imp on the field, but even so, Doomguard is one mana more and is much better. Still, I did say before that a control-oriented discard Warlock would make the quest good, and this is a control-oriented card, so maybe it’s just the tech the new archetype needs.

Arcanologist

2 Mana 2/3 Common Mage Minion

Battlecry: Draw a Secret from your deck

Our Take: This is going to be one of those cards that is either amazing or horrible. Being able to draw a card while still having a decent statline is great. That’s what made Azure Drake so good. This statline is basically where 2 mana minions want to be (it would only be more powerful if it were 3/2) and it always draws you a secret. The problem is that mage secrets aren’t that good when played normally. They need to be coupled with a cost reducer, like Kirin Tor Mage, to be useful. When Arcanologist curves out with Kirin Tor Mage it will be amazing, but otherwise it just gets you a somewhat crappy turn 3 play. That being said, we might see this being run in Kazakus Mage decks, if the archetype survives when Reno rotates out.

Elise the Trailblazer

5 Mana 5/5 Legendary Neutral Minion

Battlecry: Shuffle a sealed Un’Goro pack into your deck

Un Goro Pack

2 Mana Spell

Adds five random Un’Goro cards into your hand

Our Take: Elise’s original purpose was to aid you in control matchups. Once you had exhausted your deck, she could trade your useless cards in for legendaries in an attempt to win with last minute value. This Elise kind of does the same thing. Blizzard says Elise is “very lucky,” averaging 1 legendary in her packs and always guaranteeing at least an epic. Playing her at the end of a control matchup gives you 5 new cards to play in addition to the tools you already have in your hand. But Elise won’t only be used in control matchups. She fits just fine in mid-range decks too, giving you an extra boost when you exhaust your hand later in the game. Any card that gives you five more cards is bound to be powerful, and I guarantee you we will see Elise played in the future.

Golakka Crawler

2 Mana 2/3 Rare Neutral Beast Minion

Battlecry: Destroy a Pirate and gain +1/+1

Our Take: Are you sick of seeing Pirate Warriors everywhere? Well, here is your answer. CRABS! This probably won’t be run in many decks but, if pirates dominate the meta, we might see it run as a single-copy tech card in some decks, especially any deck with beast synergy.

Dinosize

8 Mana Epic Paladin Spell

Set a minion’s Attack and Health to 10

Our Take: When Arch Thief Rafaam was part of the meta, people would sometimes take the +10/+10 buff spell for a burst of damage to win the game. This is similar, but less powerful. Still, it provides Paladins with a source of burst to finish off opponents, which they really didn’t have before. This easily combos with any charge card, like Bluegill Warrior, to become a massive threat. Maybe that will be enough to see Murlocs get played? Probably not. The biggest weakness of this card is that you have to already have a board in order to make it do anything. It’s a “win more” card, and those cards are usually passed over.

Sherazin, Corpse Flower

4 Mana 5/3 Legendary Rogue Minion

Deathrattle: Go dormant. Play 4 cards in a turn to revive this minion

Sherazin, Seed

Permanent

When you play 4 cards in a turn, revive this minion

Our Take: This is another card that puts down a permanent, and permanents of all types are rather powerful. This time, it allows you to infinitely recur this 5/3 minion as long as you cast a lot of spells. With Tomb Pillager leaving Miracle Rogue’s 4 mana slot and Azure Drake leaving the 5 mana slot, Miracle Rogue will be looking for something to play in mid-game and Sherazin might just be it. Even if all it does is die to a spell, it has forced your opponent to waste a spell on something you paid 0 resources for.

Tar Creeper

3 Mana 1/5 Common Neutral Elemental Minion

Taunt

Has +2 Attack during your opponent’s turn

Our Take: This is actually a pretty good card when you think about the types of decks it wants to be used in. While aggressive decks just do not care about this minion, control decks love it. 3 for a 3/5 is way above the stat curve, and if you are just looking to fend off the brutal onslaught of Pirate Warrior, then this is the card for you. Expect this to be run in Priest and Mage quite a bit, just to enable slower archetypes.

Swamp King Dred

7 Mana 9/9 Legendary Hunter Beast Minion

After your opponent plays a minion, attack it

Our Take: While we really like the mechanic of a minion attacking any other minion that comes into play, it’s strange to see this card in Hunter. Attacking other minions is a control tactic and Hunter has always been aggressive. Maybe Blizzard is including enough cards in Un’Goro to make Control Hunter a viable archetype? If so, this is exactly what you want, but if not, no Hunter will run this.

That’s all we have for today. Tune in next time when we take a look at more of the wonders of Un’Goro crater.