L0rinda

Mean Streets of Gadgetzan: Preview of Revealed Kabal Cards

12 posts in this topic

QKtjpVU.jpg

The next expansion, Mean Streets of Gadgetzan, has been announced, and many of the cards have been spoiled already. This first preview discusses the announced cards from the Kabal classes of Mage, Priest, and Warlock.

The Kabal are one of the three gangs in Mean Streets of Gadgetzan. Their relevance in-game is the use of tri-cast cards. Kabal cards can be played by Mage, Priest, and Warlock. Grimy Goons cards can be played by Warrior, Hunter, and Paladin. Jade Lotus cards can be played by Rogue, Druid, and Shaman.

Kabal cards:

Xx4hQxL.png

It is too early to tell how good Kabal Courier will be, but Discover tends to be far more powerful than instincts suggest. The fact it is from such a wide pool of cards might make this less strong than some other discovers however, and a 2/2 for 3 mana is very weak in general.

The custom spell from Kazakus is best explained in the video below. It involves three rounds of discover. 

Kazakus is an interesting card, and is bound to be popular with casual players. It does however look like it might be a strong playable card too. We have seen with many recent legendaries that many headline cards end up being tournament strength, and I don't see any reason for Blizzard to change this philosophy. Playing Kazakus with Reno Jackson in Reno Warlock seems like a certainty at this stage, but they will only co-exist in Standard for about four months and then Kazakus will be on his own.

Priest cards:

L8A0MYm.png

Unsurprisingly, given the hate Priest has received recently, Blizzard were eager to reveal a lot of Priest cards early. At first glance, the Kabal Talonpriest seems like an improvement on Dark Cultist, and is at least comparable. The potions seem to show that Priest is headed down a tempo based route, having the board with a Pint-Size Potion in hand could be terrific if the support is there. The Talonpriest suggests that it will be. It will be interesting to see if Priest is given a powerful 2-drop, if it is, then I feel we could see some powerful decks capable of snowballing to victory. I am going to pass on commenting on the Dragon based cards, as we do not know enough about which Dragons will be available after Standard rotates.

No Warlock cards have been spoiled at time of writing, and only one Mage card, which is pictured below.

evdIpuT.png

Manic Soulcaster is probably not good enough for inclusion in a deck. If it does find play, it might be in a deck that survives a long time, and the Soulcaster can be used to get a combo piece twice. It is one of those cards that could pop up when we have all forgotten it exists.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Pit fighter that lets you discover a card from your opponents deck and acts as dragon synergy activator? That looks... pretty good.

Kabal Courier looks like a good addition to renolock, no?  

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Oddlane said:

I see Manic Soulcaster and Barnes setting up some interesting situations

Yes and no. I feel like those decks where Barnes is vital (Barnes/Ysh), it does nothing. In others, it's just a small boost to your chance of getting another mob. Even then, it's just the same old Barnes RNG.

I'm excited to see how it plays out, but I don't think it's going to be a defining card.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'll try to give my opinions on the spoiled cards and rate them, using this scale :

Spoiler

 

A : Obviously powerful, a multi-archetype staple, perhaps, a format-defining card.  (Tunnel TroggFiery War AxePiloted Shredder);

B: A decent card, your typical "bread and butter"; archetype staple; reliable niche card (Blackwing CorruptorCult SorcererBlood To IchorAcidic Swamp Ooze);

C: A mediocre or weak card that is a filler, outclassed by its peers or has a niche that's not reliable (Eater of SecretsStampeding Kodo;Stranglethorn Tiger; Infested Tauren);

D: It has seen play. Once. Something that's just really not great, but can occasionally make it in a meme deck, or via "get a random card" things. (Cone of ColdBloodsail CorsairStarfall);

F: Striclty unplayable. It exists to brick your random effect cards. (ShatterWispPurifyCaptain's Parrot).

Ratings are purely subjective, and, of course, opened up to debate. But I'll try to back them up with reasonable explainations.

One big thing to note is that I'll be giving two ratings - one for the current Standard, and one for going forward, in 2017-2018.

 

To kickstart things off - on all the triclass cards, or "Gang" cards:

Spoiler

The idea is definetly cool, but current iterations do not look great. It reminds me of multicolored cards in Magic: The Gathering, except for one huge thing. Being multicolored is a design thing that imposes strict disadvantage - a card is harder to cast because you need different types of mana. This drawback opens up space for card text to be good - and it will be balanced out in the end, because color screw is a very real thing. With those Gang cards coming in Hearthstone, design goes in a directly opposite way - being available to three classes is a strict advantage. You just can't make it good and don't stick an opportunity cost to make it fair. Also it would greatly reduce the diversity of the format. So it ends up undertuned, like it was with Inspire in TGT. 

Let's have a look on a Cabal Courier.

My main question is whether Discover on this cycle will look like "always one Mage, one Warlock and one Priest" or will it be pure RNG. Second option will render the card completely useless. A 2/2 body is just enough to make at least some relevance and get your mana investment back, and then the Discover still would be hard to make good, given the fact we're going in (sic!)the biggest Standard format we've ever had(!). I should give props to Courier though because it can be better post-rotation, when tempo will matter less and Discover will be more reliable.

Verdict : D for now, C in '17-'18.

Kazakus.

I have to shoot first here and call out for flavor loss. He says "custom spell" but it's a potion. And that's a serious issue. He doesn't even look like an alchemist! And frankly speaking, I have absolutely zero idea who is this guy - he does not look generic like some new characters do, so it leaves me wondering even more.

Now, on the card itself - we haven't seen all the variants yet, but I'm already making some safe assumptions. First of all, we can say this guy is Reno Jackson best buddy, and that is entirely true - you get the condition met, you get some flexibility and then the 5-drop slot in Reno decks is usually not clustered. Pretty much no questions he makes the 30. 

My biggest issue with Kazakus - he is not Reno Jackson (thx, Captain Obvious!). But it's a big thing - Reno is not just a payoff card with a chunk of value that you get for Highlander-style deck. Reno covers the deck's biggest issue - inconsistency - by being a safety valve in case you're getting ran over. Kazakus doesn't do that, and that may render him totally unplayable when '17-'18 rotation kicks in.

Verdict : B for now, D in '17-'18.

The good ones : Priest is alive!

Cabal Talonpriest

A variant of fan favorite Dark Cultist that could not come at a better time. Priest actually has viable targets in Twilight WhelpWyrmrest Agent, and then some new generic minions, so I'm expecting Talonpriest to be all over the place. Makeshift Deathlords incoming!

Verdict : B+ for now, B in '17-'18.

Dragonfire Potion

Lightbomb is alive and kicking. Would it be anything other than Priest, I would try to say that "pushing archetypes that hard is bad" but a desperate time requires desperate measures. It's playable even with 0 Dragons in your deck. But I should mention Dragons on the other side of the table are not exactly extinct right now.

Verdict : B+ for now, A in '17-'18.

Drakonid Operative

Pit Fighter-sized Shifting Shade Dragon? It competes with Blackwing Corruptor and Azure Drake, but going forward in Standard I could not ask for a better filler. This is the definition of "bread-and-butter" for your Dragon Priests(much like the other 5-drops mentioned are). And Discover is just the cherry on top.

VerdictB for now, B+ in '17-'18.

Pint-sized Potion

It's a fairly good combat trick that is going to be handy if you are trying to play for the board. A couple of synergies come to mind as well, so it's not going to be shelved for a long time.

Verdict : B for now, B in '17-'18.

Potion of Madness

This one is probably the most striking of the pack in terms of being undercosted and reliable. Shadow Madness saw play but it's ultimately too expensive. This little one is just as good and comes in at a bargain cost. Sign me up.

Verdict : A for now, A in '17-'18.

Manic Soulcaster

It looks like a very bad version of Shadowcaster (hence the name), except all the good things about Rogue card have been taken out. You'll forget it exists and then will be getting golden copies out of your rank 5 rewards and be frustrated. I'm not giving it F because it's still a Spider Tank.

Verdict : D for now, D in '17-'18.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Drakonid Operative seems absolutely nuts. What's possibly its strongest feature though is that discover mechanic, you basically get to look inside your opponent's deck and see 3 cards! That info can be so incredibly important. You can find out specific tech cards, spot niche decklist changes, see what removal isn't in hand but still in deck etc. This card will be MVP of the entire list imo.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/7/2016 at 5:10 AM, YourGod said:

Let's go Priest! Time for a rebound. 

So glad to see that 3 slot filled.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/7/2016 at 6:19 AM, PaasHaaS said:

Drakonid Operative seems absolutely nuts. What's possibly its strongest feature though is that discover mechanic, you basically get to look inside your opponent's deck and see 3 cards! That info can be so incredibly important. You can find out specific tech cards, spot niche decklist changes, see what removal isn't in hand but still in deck etc. This card will be MVP of the entire list imo.

Definitely gives a nice indicator of what you're facing, but I can't think of many decks where you haven't figured out the majority of the time by turn 5. Maybe if there are 2+ variants of a control deck? Even then, I feel like most of them have something to hint.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, Blainie said:

Definitely gives a nice indicator of what you're facing, but I can't think of many decks where you haven't figured out the majority of the time by turn 5. Maybe if there are 2+ variants of a control deck? Even then, I feel like most of them have something to hint.

Spotting which deck your opponent is playing will indeed just be confirmation a lot of the time. It will still be useful to spot some subtle differences between some decks or varieties of them though, or the spot tech cards like a harrison jones, mc tech, yogg, alex etc.  Getting a bit of a read on your opponent's hand is another big part of it though. You know that the cards you see can't be in your opponents hand. Playing this later in the game actually tells you quite a lot, as by this time they will have played at least 1 copy of a lot of their cards, so if you see certain spot removal or board clear still in there deck you know they have nothing right now.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, PaasHaaS said:

Getting a bit of a read on your opponent's hand is another big part of it though. You know that the cards you see can't be in your opponents hand.

I think this is definitely a better appraisal of how it could be used. I wonder if things can appear twice or if seeing two Brawls, for example, means the opponent has two brawls left in their deck.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now


  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • Similar Content

    • By Damien
      This thread is for comments about our Even Rogue deck list guide.
    • By Aleco

      Get your games in with Cubelock and Even Paladin while you can! The upcoming balance patch will drop on the 22nd.
       
      Confirmed today on the official Hearthstone blog, the upcoming balance patch will go live on May 22nd.
      Though the nerfs had been announced several days ago, a timeline had previously not been provided for when the nerfs would go live. For those who have yet hear, the following cards will be receiving nerfs:
      Naga Sea Witch will have its Mana cost increased from 5 to 8 Mana Spiteful Summoner will have its Mana cost increased from 6 to 7 Mana Dark Pact will restore 4 Health instead of 8 health Possessed Lackey will have its Mana cost increased from 5 to 6 Mana Call to Arms will have its Mana cost increased from 4 to 5 Mana Crystal Core will turn minions into 4/4s instead of 5/5s  
    • By Aleco

      This week's episode features a fresh take on a popular deck, courtesy of Casie.
      Can you guess the next move?
      Situation #22: Let's Even the Odds
      Picking up where we left off last week, we find ourselves in the middle of an odd/even matchup between Warlock and Shaman. I picked this situation partially because it was an interesting spot with many options available to us, and also because its a ladder situation I highly doubt any of my readers have encountered before:

      Commenters quickly identified several key factors about this matchup, namely that Defile and Hellfire are off the table for our opponent and that the only "board clear" available for our opponent is Despicable Dreadlord. Our opponent is more likely to have single target removal (such as Voodoo Doll) or is looking to play a demon-related 5 drop next turn in Skull of the Man'ari, Possessed Lackey, or Doomguard.
      Bozonik summed up this situation excellently in his comment from last week's thread:
      There seemed to be a consensus among commenters that "Option 1", Hero Power + Sea Giant was the line here. It puts a big nasty minion on the board, applying pressure and forcing our opponent to have Voodoo Doll. In the heat of the moment I went with "Option 2", the full clear, but after looking back on things and reading over the comments I believe Hero Power + Giant was the correct line. Despicable Dreadlord is really the only card which gives us serious trouble next turn (since our opponent won't be able to play Possessed Lackey and kill it) and this line plays around Dreadlord while applying just as much pressure as the other options.
      I was secretly hoping that the tap + Giant wasn't the correct line here (because its the most obvious one), but the obvious solution is often the correct one. If you're ever in a situation such as this where you have no idea what your opponent is up to, it's probably best to go for the "obvious" line and not get cute.
      Situation #23: Broken Mirrors
      Today's deck comes courtesy of Kevin "Casie" Eberlein, who cut the dragon package from Mind Blast Priest to turn the deck into something with much more of a combo/aggro feel to it. Many pros are pegging Mind Blast Priest to be the next "best deck in the meta" after the nerfs drop, and Casie's list has a serious advantage in the mirror match:
      Though I didn't find nearly as much success with the deck as Casie did, it did provide me with plenty of interesting situations for What's the Move! Here's the one I ended up choosing for this week's episode:

      It's turn 2, we're on The Coin, and our ladder opponent just played a Wild Pyromancer. For the purposes of this exercise, we can say that we're 100% confident our opponent is on Mind Blast Priest. However, this isn't a mirror match at all. We have Prophet Velen, Holy Smite, two copies of Holy Fire (most Mind Blast Priests run just one), and Lifedrinker in our deck, which gives us a huge advantage in late-game Anduin vs Anduin races. Knowing that we have an advantage in the late game should color our decision heavily on turn two, where have a surprising number of options available to us.
      So, what's the move?
    • By positiv2
      This thread is for comments about our Murloc Paladin.