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Rogue Quest Is Getting Nerfed

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In an upcoming balance update, the Rogue Quest (The Caverns Below) will be changed to be less powerful.

Almost three months after the release of Journey to Un'Goro, Team 5 has decided that it's time to tone down Quest Rogue. Soon, The Caverns Below will require 5 minions of the same name to be played, instead of four.

Blizzard LogoZaerhinon

In an upcoming update, we will be making a balance change to the Rogue card:
The Caverns Below.

The Caverns Below now reads: 
Quest: Play five minions with the same name. Reward: Crystal Core.

Since the release of Journey to Un'Goro, Hearthstone has enjoyed a wider variety of competitively viable classes and decks than ever before. We’ve been monitoring overall gameplay, and we’ve decided that—even though everything is varied and many decks are viable—a change to The Caverns Below is still warranted.

The Caverns Below is uniquely powerful versus several slower, control-oriented decks and played often enough that it’s pushing those decks out of play. This change should help expand the deck options available to players both now and after the release of the next expansion. (source)

While Quest Rogue isn't as overpowered as most people think, it is almost unbeatable against control decks. It has also created many aggro decks that directly counter it and are also efficient against midrange and control decks.

According to the latest Vicious Syndicate report, Quest or Crystal Rogue is characterised as a Tier 2 deck with a 51% win rate in Legend. Rogue is also one of the most represented classes in Legend. The same report summarises very well why Quest Rogue has been problematic in the current meta:

Quote

Is the Journey to Un’Goro meta losing its balance? It appears to be the case, and the primary culprit is Crystal Rogue. Its overbearing presence at the highest levels of play is crippling some decks while enabling some of its aggressive counters. Crystal Rogue is not dominating the game, but it’s definitely getting stronger across all levels of play [...]

The date for the balance update hasn't been announced yet.

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Too little too late. You can't ignore something for half an expansion and then come up with this simple of a fix. No excuse for taking this long and essentially killing your player base.

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4 minutes ago, Laragon said:

Too little too late. You can't ignore something for half an expansion and then come up with this simple of a fix. No excuse for taking this long and essentially killing your player base.

I disagree. Cards do not rotate out in every expansion. So, having quest rogue as it is for 5 more expansion, with more possible synergy is the problem (maybe next year, it will be weaker after Gadgetzan Ferryman). 

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I think they had to do this kind of nerf else they would have to forget about printing 1\2 mana neutral\rogue minions with good battlecries\combos. 

On other hand, I am worried about jade druid era. We lost the best counter against it. 

Edited by Strongpoint
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55 minutes ago, Laragon said:

Too little too late. You can't ignore something for half an expansion and then come up with this simple of a fix. No excuse for taking this long and essentially killing your player base.

Yea, I'm sure one quest is the reason a ton of people would just outright quit...

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29 minutes ago, idburns said:

Yea, I'm sure one quest is the reason a ton of people would just outright quit...

Actually, it is. I know of three people that had quitted because of quest rogue (myself nearly as well), and even though they are likely coming back after the nerf, it makes it easy to believe that there were people that quit for good.

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you might know they would nerf it right before I had enough dust to purchase the quest card lol,  but on the other hand I am glad because this quest is the easiest of all the classes to perform making rogues all but unbeatable, hell I have faced oponents who can play the cards reguired all in one turn on the 4th draw and win by the 5th, while every other class has to play 7 or more cards just to do there quest wich ends up being usless anyway due to already being beaten too bad to use the quest or having the activater card stolen/destroyed/silenced rendering the whole deck useless.

 

Now if they if they Nerf the unbeatable wall of taunt warrior quest that leads to instant win Ragnaros power or the easy to finish priest quest that essentially makes them an invincible fatigue deck with reno and other mass heal cards, we might be able to see more balanced wins in ranked play.

In all Honesty tho some of the quests dont make sense or fit the class, like why make warlocks discard half there deck for infinite spawning 2/3 cards that are too weak to be any help and take up 3 spots on the field permanently, Or hunter quest that requires you to play so many little 1 cost cards you are so weak you have no way of coming back with the 15 2/3s to make a difference?

in closing I have said for years this game is horribly imbalanced, your opponent ether beats you into a pulp by turn 4-5 or drags it out for 40+ turns with perfect defense to where you ether lose to fatigue or quit in frustration. 30 health is too low they need to give us like 50-60, or give both players a base starting mana of 2 and get rid of the redundant coin.

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This is a joke honestly, quest rogue was already just mid tier deck, even tho its really uniteractive this is just excessive, nerfing a deck that wasn't a problem in the first place. This is what happens when Blizzard listens to Reddit instead of people who actually understand whats an issue in this game. If there was any card to nerf for being too problematic it would be every single time Primordial Glyph instead of The Caverns Below. This is honestly disgustingly bad joke, pushes rogue, an already below average class even further into the niche and will make the meta get completely out of control as there will be no real deck to punish control decks anymore. Rogue will probably become another dead class, joining hunter and warlock. This is both infuriating and disappointing and makes me lose all faith in Blizzard when it comes to balancing their games. If they would revert one change in this game it would be this for sure every single time. This nerf is a huge buff to already prominent control decks and removes one of the "gatekeeper" decks that held the meta from becoming just control vs control clown fiesta. I guess I will quit Hearthstone till next expansion, thanks for the memories, but you are dead game now.

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3 hours ago, BrightwingMain said:

This is a joke honestly, quest rogue was already just mid tier deck, even tho its really uniteractive this is just excessive, nerfing a deck that wasn't a problem in the first place. This is what happens when Blizzard listens to Reddit instead of people who actually understand whats an issue in this game. If there was any card to nerf for being too problematic it would be every single time Primordial Glyph instead of The Caverns Below. This is honestly disgustingly bad joke, pushes rogue, an already below average class even further into the niche and will make the meta get completely out of control as there will be no real deck to punish control decks anymore. Rogue will probably become another dead class, joining hunter and warlock. This is both infuriating and disappointing and makes me lose all faith in Blizzard when it comes to balancing their games. If they would revert one change in this game it would be this for sure every single time. This nerf is a huge buff to already prominent control decks and removes one of the "gatekeeper" decks that held the meta from becoming just control vs control clown fiesta. I guess I will quit Hearthstone till next expansion, thanks for the memories, but you are dead game now.

The best deck against a control deck is jade druid? It laughs at control decks. The jade Golems keep coming and after the control deck removed them so many times they still keep coming..they have infinite spawning ability and that is what is the best cure for control.

The meta is not exactly showing control as the leading decktype. As explained above quest rogue isnt overpowered ..it's just killing the slow deck types completely and that is unwanted. When you can nerf 1 decktype and regain more than 1 that gives you a more balanced meta. That's a good thing to be honest.

Also is Quest rogue such a solo game that it's not the most fun deck to face a lot.  I say: Nerf that.

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Were Jade Druids ever nerfed? I feel this nerf is primarily needed because the Quest Rogue (yes, it is strong) is creating too many counters and overall those decks are a pain in the butt for more complex archetypes that are late game oriented.

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And in the meantime, YARRRRR! Warrior will still axe questions to the face like there's no tomorrow and Living Meme Druid will still demonstrate that his bark is just as bad as his bite; since either of these decks are too fast for both control decks and solo Rogue with a good draw... Not really certain this will slow the meta down at all.

Oh, well, I was planning to save up for Sherazin, Corpse Flower and get back to Ravioli anyway.

 

5 hours ago, Esthirel said:

Also is Quest rogue such a solo game that it's not the most fun deck to face a lot.

That, however, is true. Frustrating to play against and just as frustrating to play with; turning Hearthstone into a solo game. (*ahem* Freeze Mage *ahem*). I won't be sorry to see it go. Hell i wouldn't be sorry to see Quests go as a whole. Good idea; terrible implementation.

...

I just summarized Blizzard for the last ten years, didn't I?

Edited by Keizoku

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Let's not forget that game is not all about competitive games. Quest rogue destroys slower fun decks. If you make something like jade rogue or elemental N'zoth mage or quest paladin or whatever like this you will be destroyed in a very unfun way. It is way worse than playing against Karazhan Mid Range Shaman or MSG pirate warrior\aggro shaman with out of meta decks. 

 

Another important issue is that quest rogue is a very nasty deck to encounter for a new player with limited experience and collection. Look at any of basic only decks on this site. They are not that bad against meta-decks piloted by rank 20-15 players but quest rogue will rip basic decks to pieces because they are not fast enough and have zero tools to deal with 5\5 boards.

 

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A week after release I thought, and still think, the idea of quests sounded cool ... in theory but in really they are not a good or healthy addition to the game. Not only the rogue quest. Quest are the reason why I stopped playing ranked , just getting to 20. It's not like I cant win but grinding my way through this cancer again and again is simply no fun.

And nerfing rogue quest from 4 to 5 minions definitely makes it weaker but still no fun to play against.

Edited by Caldyrvan

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12 hours ago, BrightwingMain said:

This is a joke honestly, quest rogue was already just mid tier deck, even tho its really uniteractive this is just excessive, nerfing a deck that wasn't a problem in the first place. This is what happens when Blizzard listens to Reddit instead of people who actually understand whats an issue in this game. If there was any card to nerf for being too problematic it would be every single time Primordial Glyph instead of The Caverns Below. This is honestly disgustingly bad joke, pushes rogue, an already below average class even further into the niche and will make the meta get completely out of control as there will be no real deck to punish control decks anymore. Rogue will probably become another dead class, joining hunter and warlock. This is both infuriating and disappointing and makes me lose all faith in Blizzard when it comes to balancing their games. If they would revert one change in this game it would be this for sure every single time. This nerf is a huge buff to already prominent control decks and removes one of the "gatekeeper" decks that held the meta from becoming just control vs control clown fiesta. I guess I will quit Hearthstone till next expansion, thanks for the memories, but you are dead game now.

Ben Brode states that he is surprised how popular Quest Rogue is when taking its win rate in account, and that there has never been a deck so "bad" yet so popular. That is why it was a problem - it was taking up a huge % of decks on ladder.

I feel like Quest Rogue isn't really non interactive. You can fight against their board, which is not the case against for example most mage decks these days. I would take Quest Rogue over Freeze/Quest/Burn Mage as my opponent any day, with any deck.

Reddit is complaining about Vicious Fledgling all the time (once I saw like 6 threads about the card on the front page). If Blizz was listening to Reddit, Vicious Fledgling would be the card getting a nerf. Besides, if that's what the majority of players want, they will probably do it. After all, they need to keep their playerbase. Losing few hardcore players is better for them than losing a lot of casuals.

There are still other aggro decks that will fight against control decks, so no need to worry about the game becoming control vs control all the time.

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All of the other quests are along the lines of "do something you might want to do anyway, but do more of it and get a reward". Warlocks routinely discard cards by playing Doomguard or Soulfire, can you discard 6 cards? Every paladin deck runs Spikeridged Steed, but they have numerous other buffs like Blessing of Kings. Can you play 6 buff cards? It turns out the answer to the question posed by most of the quests is no, if you want to be competitive.

Every mage deck runs 2x primordial glyph, and babbling book, kabal courier, cabalist's tome are all cards that see play, so it is at least plausible that someone could build a mage deck that accidentally fulfills the quest condition occasionally. Discard warlocks want to play soulfire, doomguard, etc, so playing a discard zoo deck you would probably discard 6 cards sometimes.

The reason Quest Warrior is competitive is because control warrior wants to play a LOT of taunts anyway, and if you just removed the quest card from a Quest Warrior deck, it would still be playable. Quest warrior actually mulligans its quest in a lot of matchups. If you built a control warrior deck without using the quest, you would likely fulfill the quest condition in many games just playing naturally.

The quest condition in Quest rogue is completely unnatural. Yes, shadowstep is a card that sees play in miracle decks, which might occasionally result in them playing 3 of the same name. But there is basically no way you would ever design a rogue deck without the quest in mind and notice during play-- that's odd, I just played a minion with that name 4 times.  Also the quest reward is only significant if your minions will be buffed by turning into 5/5s. So you are forced into something that looks like quest rogue decks-- full of tiny minions and bounce effects, with zero early game pre-quest, a strong mid game post-quest if you manage to complete before dying to aggro, and no answer for a late-game control deck that manages to hold out against the initial wave of 5/5s until turn 8+.

I think the 4 minion condition was actually pretty well tuned. On average, aggro decks will kill you and your pathetic 1/1 minions around turn 6 if you haven't managed to complete the quest and stabilize. Control decks will start to laugh at your pathetic 5/5 minions around turn 8-9. If you are lucky and complete quickly, you might outrace an aggro deck. If you are slow and complete too late, you probably die to control. There is a narrow window in the middle where quest rogue is dominant. Even if the 5 minion condition just pushes back average quest completion by 1 turn, that window will shrink to unplayability.

Which will make this just as bad as all of the other quests (except warrior), so maybe that is by design.

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Hmmm. Looking at Vicious Syndicate maybe they are fixing a problem I haven't seen because I have never made legend yet. VS show that Quest rogue is the most popular archetype at legend ranks at  13.26%.  But it is only the 5th most popular archetype where I am in ranks 1-5 at  7.26%.

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16 minutes ago, zifmia said:

All of the other quests are along the lines of "do something you might want to do anyway, but do more of it and get a reward". Warlocks routinely discard cards by playing Doomguard or Soulfire, can you discard 6 cards? Every paladin deck runs Spikeridged Steed, but they have numerous other buffs like Blessing of Kings. Can you play 6 buff cards? It turns out the answer to the question posed by most of the quests is no, if you want to be competitive.

It is true for the current meta but we have 5 expansion before quests go wild. Warlocks will get new discard synergy cards, paladins will get buffs, priests will get deathrattles, hunters will get one drops... 

I am not saying that currently non-viable quest are guaranteed to become competitive, but they  definitely will grow stronger and it is a possibility that we may see them in tournaments. I am not even sure that 5 cards quest rogue won't become viable again in the next expansion(s)

Quests are not like C'thun or Jade golems. They will get cards that work with them in every expansion. Try to look in the future instead of evaluation deck archetypes by looking at the current pool of cards. One of reasons why quest rogue nerf is necessary - they'll become stronger with any fast one or two drop.

 

19 minutes ago, zifmia said:

Hmmm. Looking at Vicious Syndicate maybe they are fixing a problem I haven't seen because I have never made legend yet. VS show that Quest rogue is the most popular archetype at legend ranks at  13.26%.  But it is only the 5th most popular archetype where I am in ranks 1-5 at  7.26%.

That 7.26% indirectly resulted in my first ever legend this month. I got so pissed playing against quest rogues that I went for pirate warrior to smash some Maiev's faces

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15 hours ago, Moos said:

Were Jade Druids ever nerfed? I feel this nerf is primarily needed because the Quest Rogue (yes, it is strong) is creating too many counters and overall those decks are a pain in the butt for more complex archetypes that are late game oriented.

No Jade druid is never nerfed. I don't claim it has been I just explain Control is dominated by more decktypes than just cancer decks. On the other hand I must admit I really don't enjoy playing against a jade druid as well.It has a similar problem to quest rogue being that the luck of the draw of the Rogue/Druid will decide most of the time who wins. I'd rather win because i made the right decisions in the game ;)

In fact everything containing the word jade pushes me away. The spawning a bigger minion everytime  doesn't complement the game at all. It's a dissonant among the different game mechanics in Hearthstone.

Murlocs f.e. are a brilliant concept compared to jade blabla..so much more layered than the never surprising next bigger jade golem.

Don Han Cho is pure maffia and should be a powerful boss.. Crafted him right after Gadgetzan released. Soo cool and soo powerful  but he doesnt bring me the win??

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On 6/29/2017 at 6:53 AM, Strongpoint said:

It is true for the current meta but we have 5 expansion before quests go wild. Warlocks will get new discard synergy cards, paladins will get buffs, priests will get deathrattles, hunters will get one drops... I a

m not saying that currently non-viable quest are guaranteed to become competitive, but they  definitely will grow stronger and it is a possibility that we may see them in tournaments.

I disagree, with the exception of the priest one.  The warlock, hunter, and paladin quests are pretty flawed.  The hunter one will pretty much never be viable.  Hunters need the board to win, they have no come back mechanisms.  Having to shove a ton of 1 drops in your deck then not playing one on turn one pretty much guarantees that the quest will never be good.  Too low value, too many deck building restrictions and the quest reward simply isn't good enough.  Similar problem for the warlock one, not a good enough reward, too clunky in a zoo type deck, and discarding cards in a control deck is BAD, especially when you can just play mister J instead.  Paladin one COULD become viable if they print some absolutely broken buffs, but they would have to be very very strong, buffs are inherently weak, since putting them on your minions means you can get 2 or 3 for 1ed by your opponents removal and creatures.  Plus galvadon just isn't that strong, good for a finisher in a faster deck, but for a slower deck, its pretty meeeeeh.  The priest one could become good though.  It is good in wild.  Though I doubt it, but that one is a possibility.  The two cards in wild that make it good are sludge belcher and death lord, so if we get some good taunt/death rattles (Or deathrattles that heal a lot), then yes, otherwise this one will also be relegated to obscurity.

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5 hours ago, VaraTreledees said:

I disagree, with the exception of the priest one.  The warlock, hunter, and paladin quests are pretty flawed.  The hunter one will pretty much never be viable.  Hunters need the board to win, they have no come back mechanisms.  Having to shove a ton of 1 drops in your deck then not playing one on turn one pretty much guarantees that the quest will never be good.  Too low value, too many deck building restrictions and the quest reward simply isn't good enough.  Similar problem for the warlock one, not a good enough reward, too clunky in a zoo type deck, and discarding cards in a control deck is BAD, especially when you can just play mister J instead.  Paladin one COULD become viable if they print some absolutely broken buffs, but they would have to be very very strong, buffs are inherently weak, since putting them on your minions means you can get 2 or 3 for 1ed by your opponents removal and creatures.  Plus galvadon just isn't that strong, good for a finisher in a faster deck, but for a slower deck, its pretty meeeeeh.  The priest one could become good though.  It is good in wild.  Though I doubt it, but that one is a possibility.  The two cards in wild that make it good are sludge belcher and death lord, so if we get some good taunt/death rattles (Or deathrattles that heal a lot), then yes, otherwise this one will also be relegated to obscurity.

I strongly disagree with your evaluation of potential of the warlock quest, Cards with effect like > draw three cards discard two of them or add three 0\1 imps with negative battlecry to your hand as well as cards that like to be discarded can make the quest quite powerful and better than discard zoo without quest

I pretty much agree with the hunter quest evaluation,  Hunter needs board control and skipping turn one is not a great turn one for them. Looks like anything that empowers quest decks will empower other hunter decks more.  

Priest quest is summon, not play... It may be ridiculously easy to complete should blizzard print something silly like deathrattle that summons a deathrattle that summons a deathrattle. 

 

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43 minutes ago, Strongpoint said:

should blizzard print something silly like deathrattle that summons a deathrattle that summons a deathrattle

So a neutral/priest Dreadsteed?

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9 hours ago, positiv2 said:

So a neutral/priest Dreadsteed?

Dreadsteed was originally suppose to be neutral but they couldn't do it due to Warsong Commander, hence her nerf. It wasn't just the Grim Patron decks that warranted her nerf, it was a developmental issue for future cards and here we are with the issue with The Caverns Below.  My biggest issue with cards being nerfed is they should be made better the first time around, especially this far into Hearthstone. Sometimes it seems like they don't consider the other cards in existence when they are making new ones. Hopefully they learn from this moving forward but I'm not going to hold my breath. 

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10 hours ago, Strongpoint said:

I strongly disagree with your evaluation of potential of the warlock quest, Cards with effect like > draw three cards discard two of them or add three 0\1 imps with negative battlecry to your hand as well as cards that like to be discarded can make the quest quite powerful and better than discard zoo without quest

I pretty much agree with the hunter quest evaluation,  Hunter needs board control and skipping turn one is not a great turn one for them. Looks like anything that empowers quest decks will empower other hunter decks more.  

Priest quest is summon, not play... It may be ridiculously easy to complete should blizzard print something silly like deathrattle that summons a deathrattle that summons a deathrattle. 

 

A card that causes you to draw three cards then discard two of them would be pretty terrible in zoo, tbh.  Your already lowering your consistency with the quest, on top of possibly missing a drop with the quest.  Meh.  I really don't ever see the warlock quest being good in zoo.  Most of the time when zoo plays doomguard on turn 5, they have nothing to discard.  When your playing an aggressive deck that floods the board, discarding six cards is hard, you simply play too many of them too fast in most cases.  I just don't ever see a world in which discard zoo will be better with that quest.  The control route seems slightly more viable to me, but again, discarding cards is bad when you play control, since you discard the cards that make your deck a control deck half the time, especially because you have to run so many low valueish cards (things like silverware golem and the imp) to make a discard gimmick work.  The quest has too much anti-synergy with both control and zoo lock to be used in either, there might be a deck somewhere at sometime that it might possibly see play, but it won't be zoo or control, and even then, I think its highly highly unlikely.

 

On to the topic of quest rogue, The. Nerfs. Can't. Come. Soon. Enough.  As someone who likes to play slower controlish style decks and miracle rogue, I absolutely detest this deck.  It might not be "too strong", but it is meta warping, and in a bad way.  Any deck that has the sort of match ups quest rogue does (incredibly polarizing one way or another) is inevitably going to warp and change the meta, especially if it is popular.  Forcing players to nearly auto lose if they play something that isn't gunther mage or aggro against a deck is a bad way to design a card game.

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      Towards the end of the Un’Goro metagame no one class was vastly more dominant than the others, but the same is certainly not true for the early days of KFT. Druid has become the most popular by a wide margin. According to the current Reaper Live report a staggering 36% of the Legend meta is made up of Druid decks. Thanks in no small part to the new cards Ultimate Infestation and Spreading Plague, Druid now boasts highly competitive Midrange and Control decks to compliment the Aggro deck which was already top tier in Un’Goro.
      A major reason why all three decks are so difficult to play against is how difficult it is to mulligan against a Druid. You can never know for sure if you should be keeping cards which are strong against Jade Druid or Aggro Druid, which surely plays a part in the success of both decks. Druid might be quite strong at the moment but it is certainly not unbeatable, and according to the Reaper Live report there are multiple decks which have a positive winrate against two of three Druid builds.
      Meta Beaters
      The perfect deck for this early meta will have the defensive tools to outclass Aggro decks such as Pirate Warrior and Aggro Druid in the early game while still being fast enough to kill Jade Druid and Kazakus Priest decks before they get the chance to dominate the late game. Aggro decks make up only 25% of the current meta, which means it’s still much more important to slant your deck towards the speedy end of things so that you can beat up on the slower decks which are still popular. All of these signs point towards an aggressively slanted Midrange deck as the best choice for the current meta, and the data from Reaper Live agrees. The deck with the best winrates across the board is not a Druid deck at all, but an aggressive Midrange Murloc Paladin deck.
      Midrange Murloc Paladin
      2x Murloc Tidecaller 2x Righteous Protector 2x Vilefin Inquisitor 2x Hydrologist 2x Rockpool Hunter 2x Murloc Warleader 2x Rallying Blade 1x Stonehill Defender 1x Wickerflame Burnbristle 2x Blessing of Kings 2x Corpsetaker 2x Gentle Megasaur 1x Bolvar, Fireblood 1x Finja, the Flying Star 2x Spikeridged Steed 1x Sunkeeper Tarim 2x Bonemare 1x Tirion Fordring Shockingly, Midrange Paladin has positive matchups against every deck in the meta except for Token Shaman and Aggro Druid, but even these matchups sit at a very manageable 48%. The deck was already a strong choice in the Un’Goro meta but it picked up some exciting new toys in KFT to build upon its previous success. Defensive minions like Righteous Protector and Corpsetaker allow the deck stall aggressive decks into the midgame, where Midrange Paladin shines. A Bonemare or a Spikeridged Steed on a Skelemancer is commonly a game ending play, and all of the powerful legendary minions the deck had access to in the Un’Goro meta have gone nowhere.
      Midrange Paladin also packs an impressive number of early Murlocs which are capable of applying tons of pressure. The dream 1-2-3-4 of Murloc Tidecaller into Rockpool Hunter into Murloc Warleader into Gentle Megasaur has to potential to kill as early as turn 4 against any opponent who doesn't pack interaction for the early game . With Murloc Paladin boasting such high win rates across the board, don’t be surprised if you see Hungry Crab start popping up as the tech card of choice in the near future.
      Big Priest
      2x Forbidden Shaping 1x Silence 2x Pint-Size Potion 2x Potion of Madness 2x Shadow Visions 2x Shadow Word: Pain 2x Shadow Word: Death 1x Barnes 2x Eternal Servitude 2x Priest of the Feast 2x Shadow Word: Horror 2x Dragonfire Potion 2x Shadow Essence 1x Free From Amber 1x The Lich King 2x Obsidian Statue 1x Ysera 1x Y'Shaarj, Rage Unbound In what I consider to be another big surprise, Big Priest is the only other deck with positive winrates against two of the three popular Druid decks . A brand new deck in KFT thanks to Eternal Servitude, Shadow Essence, and Obsidian Statue, the deck boasts a dominant 71% winrate against Midrange Druid and a very respectable 53% against Token Druid. Its 45% win rate against Jade Druid isn’t embarrassing either, which means this deck still has some game against the most popular deck in the format.
      Big Priest seems like a very luck-oriented deck on its surface as it features high-roll cards like Barnes and Shadow Essence to pull powerful minions from its deck at a discounted cost, yet in practice the deck is shockingly consistent. It doesn’t have any true misses off a Barnes, who himself is the only awkward card to hit off Shadow Essence. Even if it doesn’t hit one of these cards early, double Dragonfire Potion and double Pint-Size Potion plus Shadow Word: Horror allows the deck to draw out the game until they can play their huge minions naturally.
      With all that said, the deck still has a tendency to defeat itself by drawing the wrong combination of cards. It gets absolutely run over by Pirate Warrior and Quest Mage and isn’t able to run tech cards like Golakka Crawler or Dirty Rat due to the nature of Barnes and Shadow Essence. Fortunately for fans of Big Priest, these two bad matchups make up just 10% of the meta while the positive matchups for Big Priest account for roughly 40% of the meta, making Big Priest an excellent choice for the early KFT metagame.
      Tech of the Week
      The one piece of technology which has remained consistently powerful throughout the first week of KFT is The Black Knight. Thanks to the extremely widespread play of Bonemare there are almost no decks in the metagame which lack a juicy target for The Black Knight to gobble up. This Aggro Druid list which hit #1 Legend not only runs Bonemare, but also runs The Black Knight to pave the way for its cheaper minions to sneak in those last few points of damage. It doesn’t really seem to matter if your Aggro, Midrange, or Control, The Black Knight is a game winning tech card in the current meta. 
      Deck to Watch
      The success of Midrange Paladin can be attributed to the fact that it is both fast enough to go underneath the current Control decks and defensive enough to go over the top of the current Aggro decks. Any other deck which is capable of accomplishing this same feat would also be very well positioned, which makes me believe that Nostam's Midrange Hunter is poised to take off.
      2x Alleycat 2x Hungry Crab 2x Tracking 2x Crackling Razormaw 2x Golakka Crawler 2x Kindly Grandmother 2x Animal Companion 2x Bearshark 2x Eaglehorn Bow 2x Kill Command 2x Houndmaster 1x Nesting Roc 2x Tundra Rhino 1x Deathstalker Rexxar 2x Savannah Highmane 2x Bonemare This deck has all the tools it needs to blast its way through Jade Druid with the proper draw. Bearshark curves amazingly into Houndmaster, and Bonemare is like a Houndmaster on steroids. It runs a healthy curve of one and two drops to contest the board early, and pack all four crabs so it can steal some free wins off of Aggro decks. Deathstalker Rexxar seems at his absolute best in this style of deck, as he provides the deck with the card draw engine it needs to not run out of steam against controlling decks.
      I still think the list has a bit of room to improve. Hunter is currently the least played class in the entire meta which also means it is the least tested. I’m not sure that double Tundra Rhino shines in this list without Deathstalker Rexxar already in play. The deck also might be in need one more tool to outvalue opposing Midrange decks in the mid to late game, as it doesn’t pack many tools to catch up once it’s fallen behind.
      Conclusion
      Our goal with this report was to get you up to speed on the current trends in the meta and to provide you with the analysis you’ll need to stay ahead of the competition. As this was our first meta report for Hearthstone we would love to hear your feedback on what you felt worked or what you thought might have been missing. Please feel free to tell us in the comments what you found to be helpful and if there if there is anything you’d like to see in the next meta report!
      Until next time,
      Aleco
    • By Zadina

      Choose your Champion returns for the Hearthstone Global Games finals.
      Once again, as with every major Hearthstone competition hosted by Blizzard, we can choose our favourite representative and potentially win card packs! This time it's the Hearthstone Global Games finals with four teams of four people from four different countries.
      The finalists are: the United States, Ukraine, South Korea and the Czech Republic.
      Head over to this site and pick the country that you think is most likely to win. The voting will last until August 23 at 23:59 PDT. You will get a free Knights of the Frozen Throne pack just for participating in the voting. Since the Global Games are already on the semi-finals stage, you can win up to a maximum of two packs only (given that the two semi-finalists will progress to the finals and there's no progressing after that).
      The finals will take place at Gamescom on August 25. Choose wisely!
    • By Vlad
      This thread is for comments about our Sindragosa guide for Knights of the Frozen Throne.