Aleco

Kobolds & Catacombs Set Review: Neutral Cards

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expansion-kobolds-and-catacombs.jpg

A written set review for the remaining 45 neutral cards in Kobolds & Catacombs.

Click here to read my other written set reviews!

My Rating System

Each card is rated on a scale of 1 to 5 on two criteria: Power and Versatility.

The Power rating reflects how much I expect a card to impact the game when played. Cards which immediately represent multiple cards worth of value (Ultimate Infestation) or have a powerful effect on the board for their mana cost (Sunkeeper Tarim) will receive high Power ratings, while cards which have a low impact on the game (Ice Breaker) or cost too much for their effect (Furnacefire Colossus) will receive Power low ratings.

The Versatility rating is intended to communicate how dependent a card is on other cards for its success. Cards can be very powerful without being versatile at all (Clutchmother Zavas), which means that many exciting and powerful cards will end up seeing very little play once the metagame is established. A high Versatility rating means a card relies very little on other cards to be good, and the more comfortable I would feel crafting that card on day one. A lower Versatility rating doesn't necessarily reflect that I expect the card to be bad, but that I wouldn't feel comfortable crafting it until it has proven itself to be a part of a competitive deck.

Marin the Fox

leg1.png

Fits into: Control decks

Power Versatility
2 3

Marin was released shortly after Blizzcon in November, so we already know what we're getting with this card. It isn't phenomenal, but it also isn't horrible. I don't expect it to get any better in the K&C meta.

Zola the Gorgon

leg2.png

Fits into: Quest Rogue

Power Versatility
2 2

As much as I love the gorgonzola joke in this card's name, I don't think Zola has what it takes to see widespread play. She probably makes the cut in decks that care about playing multiple copies of the same card, such as Quest Rogue.

King Togwaggle

leg3.pngleg3-1.png

Fits into: Don't play this card

Power Versatility
1 1

The Battlecry on this card is as awesome as it is awful. If it weren't so easy for your opponent to swap decks back with you then maybe King Togwaggle would see niche play, but as things stand right now the card is dreadful.

Master Oakheart

leg4.png

Fits into: Dedicated combo/recruit decks

Power Versatility
4 3

Getting 4 minions from one card seems undeniably powerful, and being able to tailor you deck in such a way to maximize the effectiveness of Master Oakheart's trigger should make his Battlecry even stronger. The obvious thing to do with this card is to nab cards with modest bodies but powerful effects, such as Drakkari Enchanter, Dragonhatcher, and powerful Legendaries like Fandral StaghelmLyra the Sunshard, and Hadronox, but you probably don't need to go very far out of your way to make this card good. It'll take some finesse to design a strong Master Oakheart deck, but I have faith that it can be done in multiple classes.

The Darkness

leg5.png

Fits into: Tech Card

This is an anti-Highlander tech card. Shuffling multiple copies of a card with the same into your opponent's deck name breaks the Highlander clause on cards like Raza the Chained. As tempting as a 20/20 is, this card is way to slow to played under normal circumstances.

Carnivorous Cube

ep1.png

Fits into: Deathrattle Decks, Jade Rogue

Power Versatility
4 2

You need to have a fairly dedicated Deathrattle deck before Carnivorous Cube starts to make sense, but once you have enough valuable targets for this card's Battlecry it actually becomes quite powerful. A 4/6 body is no joke, and I can only imagine that playing three Aya Blackpaws in a single game is pretty powerful. This card requires some setup, but I think that it will do enough to warrant some extensive testing.

Rummaging Kobold

ep2.png

Fits into: Legendary Weapon Decks, Weapon Rogue

Power Versatility
2 2

The body on this card sucks, but if you absolutely must play your shiny new Legendary weapon more than once this will certainly do the trick. I'm having trouble identifying which of the new Legendary weapons are actually strong enough to justify putting a 3 mana 1/3 into your deck, but that shouldn't stop Rummaging Kobold from finding its way into dedicated weapon decks.

Spiteful Summoner

ep3.png

Fits into: Big Spells Mage

Power Versatility
3 1

If this can consistently find a spell that costs 4 or more Spiteful Summoner will probably pull its weight. The question is, how many decks will be able to consistently meet that bill? The obvious home for this is the Big Spells Mage deck, but I wouldn't be surprised if there were a few other decks that could consistently hit the 4+ mana cost mark.

Grand Archivist

ep4.png

Fits into: Dedicated Combo?

Power Versatility
2 1

The amount of deckbuilding restrictions this card imposes is nuts, which leads me to believe that it won't see any play in normal decks. You could try to build a deck which only has positive hits for this card, but the fact you have to wait until turn 8 to play Grand Archivist leads me to believe that this kind of strategy is too slow and inconsistent to ever be competitive.

Arcane Tyrant

ep5.png

Fits into: Any deck that runs 4 or more spells which cost 5 or more

Power Versatility
5 4

Cards that can potentially be played for zero mana set my alarm bells off. A 4/4 body is highly relevant in most Hearthstone games, so expect to see Arcane Tyrant cropping up in basically every deck that can consistently play it for free. Nourish and Ultimate Infestation make this card a slam dunk in Big Druid and Jade Druid, and the majority of slower Mage decks with Blizzard and Firelands Portal will probably find ways to make room for this card. It even has an Elemental subtype, which could make the card even more powerful in Elemental Mage or Elemental Shaman.

Dragonhatcher

ep6.png

Fits into: Recruit Decks

Power Versatility
2 1

I only see this being played in Recruit decks as a target for Master Oakheart. If you're going to pay nine mana to get a big nasty Dragon, why waste your time on Dragonhatcher if you could just pay the same amount of mana for the big nasty Dragon?

Void Ripper

ep7.png

Fits into: Taunt decks, Silence Priest

Power Versatility
4 3

Flipping the stats on a board of Spreading Plague Scarabs could be a game-winning move. The fail case of being a 3 mana 3/3 makes me even more interested in this card, which could also serve as extra copies of Inner Fire in Silence Priest.

Shimmering Courser

ep8.png

Fits into: Quest Paladin, Beast Druid

Power Versatility
3 2

Decks which can take advantage of Shimmering Courser's asymmetrical effect will probably be happy to run it. This card has built-in protection against removal spells for a Last Kaleidosaur deck, and could be a potent target for Mark of Y'Shaarj in a beast-themed Druid deck. Aggro Druid can probably find better things to do for four mana though.

Corridor Creeper

ep9.png

Fits into: Go-wide aggro decks

Power Versatility
4 2

I originally gave this card a very high rating and ranked it among one of my top 5 most underrated cards in the set. Then I realized it wasn't a beast, and I got way less excited about its applications in Midrange Hunter. Then this card got errata'd back to a beast by Blizzard, and I'm back to being pretty excited about it.

Any aggressive deck that its looking to flood the board with minions will be happy to play a 5/5 thats costs 3 or less, and I don't think it will be particularly hard to kill 4 or more minions in those kinds of decks. The fact that this is drawn as a 7 mana 5/5 makes it a rough top deck, but I think that the card has enough upside to see some play.

Feral Gibberer

rar1.png

Fits into: Quest Rogue, Handbuff Paladin

Power Versatility
3 2

Stupid autocorrect, what do you mean "gibberer" isn't a word?!

Feral Giberrer is far too fragile to be a potent threat in the majority of aggro decks, but the fact that this card generates copies of itself could make it quite the little pest in decks which can consistently put buffs on it. Handbuff Paladin is the first deck I can think of which could potentially make use our gibbery little friend, and anything with Prince Keleseth in it might make sense as well. The majority of the Hearthstone community seems to be down Feral Gibberer, but I wouldn't be so quick to write it off.

Lone Champion

rar2.png

Fits into: Slow decks with few early drops

Power Versatility
3 2

Lone Champion does a fine job of gumming up the board against aggressive decks, but I don't think I see myself playing it over Tar Creeper or Stonehill Defender.

Hungry Ettin

rar3.png

Fits into: Taunt Druid

Power Versatility
2 2

Hungry Ettin seems pretty close to playable, even with it's negative Battlecry ability. His body is awfully large, and if you can cheat him into play then he won't summon a 2 drop for your opponent.

Furbolg Mossbinder

rar4.png

Fits into: Evolve Shaman

Power Versatility
2 2

The fact that this guy's Battlecry trigger won't activate cards like Blazecaller holds him back from any kind of relevance in dedicated Elemental decks. I also doubt that he's better than Doppelgangster in Evolve Shaman.

Ebon Dragonsmith

rar5.png

Fits into: Dragon + Weapon decks

Power Versatility
2 1

Its mana cost isn't quite low enough, its stats aren't quite high enough, its Battlecry isn't quite strong enough, and its minion-type probably isn't relevant enough. If you can somehow assemble a deck which cares about both its minion-type and it Battlecry trigger, then I don't see why you shouldn't give Ebon Dragonsmith a shot.

Gravelsnout Knight

rar6.png

Fits into: Don't play this card

Power Versatility
1 1

Giving your opponent a random 1-cost minion is far too big of a downside to make up for this cards impressive stats.

Kobold Monk

rar7.png

Fits into: Tech Card

It doesn't seem unreasonable to expect that at least a few decks will appear in the K&C meta which Kobold Monk cause headaches for. A 3/6 body is quite impressive for 4 mana, which could potentially make this one of the stronger tech cards if the need for its ability ever arises.

Shrieking Shroom

rar9.png

Fits into: Evolve Shaman

Power Versatility
1 2

Unless I'm seriously undervaluing how strong a random 1-Cost minion is, this card seems far worse than Primalfin Totem.

Guild Recruiter

c1.png

Fits into: Recruit Decks

Power Versatility
3 4

Not every Recruit deck will be interested in wasting their time on 4 costs minions, but I expect that Druid decks with Oaken Summons will be interested in Guild Recruiter. The Recruit mechanic is quite strong, so I'd be surprised if Guild Recruiter didn't play.

Silver Vanguard

c2.png

Fits into: Deathrattle decks

Power Versatility
2 2

I'd be far more interested in Silver Vanguard if it's Deathrattle was a Battlecry. As-is, I could maybe see this as a combo piece in dedicated Deathrattle decks. Carnivorous Cube and Seeping Oozeling might be strong enough to make this mediocre card playable.

Hoarding Dragon

c3.png

Fits into: Aggro Dragon decks

Power Versatility
2 1

As impressive as a 4 mana 5/6 is, giving your opponent two Coins will more than likely offset the tempo that this card buys with its body. Dragon decks which can take advantage of this card's minion-type might find a few uses for it, but I don't expect this to see play.

Cursed Disciple

c4.png

Fits into: Quest Druid

Power Versatility
3 1

The fact that this triggers Jungle Giants twice makes it an instant role-player in Quest Druid. The fact that this card has one health twice makes it dreadful against Mage, and will likely hold it back from seeing play outside of the Arena.

Fungalmancer

c5.png

Fits into: Don't play this card

Power Versatility
1 1

Fungalmancer doesn't consistently provide enough stats to justify its mana cost. Next!

Hoarding Dragon

c6.png

Fits into: Don't play this card

Power Versatility
1 1

This has been erratta'd to a Dragon minion-type, but I think I'll still stick with Ysera if I ever need a 9 mana 4/12.

Kobold Apprentice

c7.png

Fits into: Tech Card

If Dude Paladin ever becomes a potent a player in the meta, Kobold Apprentice will do a great job of cleaning up Silver Hand Recruits. Outside of that bizarre scenario, this card doesn't do quite enough to earn a spot in competitive decks.

Boisterous Bard

c8.png

Fits into: Don't play this card

Power Versatility
1 1

This will probably do some work in the Arena, but likely isn't powerful enough to consider for constructed play.

Corrosive Sludge

c9.png

Fits into: Don't play this card

Power Versatility
1 1

For when you absolutely, totally, must have more than 7 weapon destruction cards in your deck! Seriously, just play Harrison Jones.

Dire Mole

c10.png

Fits into: Beast Hunter, Aggro Druid

Power Versatility
4 3

Beast Hunter decks have always wanted another playable and resilient 1-drop beast to accompany Alleycat, and I think they found that card in Dire Mole. 3 Health is an awful lot for one mana, so I expect this card to be a real pain in the catacombs if it ever gets Poisonous or +3 attack from a Crackling Razormaw.  It should also be able to find its way into Aggro Druid lists that can buff it up with Mark of the LotusPower of the Wild, and Mark of Y'Shaarj.

Dragonslayer

c11.png

Fits into: Tech Card

Boy, am I glad this card was printed. If Duskbreaker and Cobalt Scalebane ever take over the metagame, this dwarf will be up to the task of keeping them in check. Don't be surprised if this impressive tech card sees quite a bit of play in the upcoming meta.

Fungal Enchanter

c12.png

Fits into: Aggro Priest

Power Versatility
2 2

This card does some serious work in combination with Northshire Cleric, and a 3 mana 3/3 is a somewhat reasonable body in exchange for the upside this card provides. Even still, I don't think it does quite enough to earn its keep in aggressive Priest decks.

Green Jelly

c13.png

Fits into: Taunt decks

Power Versatility
2 2

If you can reliably trigger this card two or three times it seems pretty good. The trouble is, I don't think you'll be able to reliably trigger this card two or three times.

Plated Beetle

c14.png

Fits into: Armor-matters decks

Power Versatility
3 2

Plated Beetle provides juuuuuuuuuust enough upside with its Deathrattle trigger to find its way into Armor-matters decks. River Crocolisks provide a reliable upside in the early game, so this card should be passable if you can make use of the 3 Armor.

Sewer Crawler

c15.png

Fits into: Don't play this card

Power Versatility
1 1

A slightly better Razorfen Hunter in beast-themed decks, Sewer Crawler is a little too lackluster for competitive play.

Shroom Brewer

c16.png

Fits into: Handlock

Power Versatility
3 3

First Gadgetzan Socialite, then Earthen Ring Farseer, now this? When it will stop Blizzard?!

Decks that are looking for a burst of healing and have a spot in their curve for another 4-drop will be happy to play Shroom Brewer. I can see this card working its way into a few Handlock decks.

Sneaky Devil

c17.png

Fits into: Demon Aggro Decks

Power Versatility
2 1

I don't think that adding stealth to Raid Leader makes the card playable. This probably doesn't do quite enough to justify its mana cost in normal decks, but if you could take advantage of its Demon type then you might be able to make it work.

Toothy Chest

c18.png

Fits into: Don't play this card

Power Versatility
1 1


Nice try, Validated Doomsayer. Reducing your cost to three and a Attack/Health to 4 doesn't make you suddenly playable!

Trogg Gloomeater

c19.png

Fits into: Don't play this card

Power Versatility
1 1

I'd way rather play Stubborn Gastropod if I was in desperate need of a minion that had both Taunt and Poisonous, as this card's stats are dreadfully inefficient for its mana cost.

Violet Wurm

c20.png

Fits into: Hunter decks with Seeping Oozeling?

Power Versatility
3 2

I want to believe that this card is somehow good, because the Deathrattle trigger on this card is incredibly powerful. Your opponent can't ignore a 7/7 forever, and there are plenty of decks out there that are capable of taking advantage of 7 1/1s. Perhaps this can see play in a deck with Seeping Oozeling?

Wax Elemental

c21.png

Fits into: Aggro decks with pump effects

Power Versatility
2 2

We know that Righteous Protector is a worthwhile card for Paladin decks, but that card is capable of trading with 1 Health minions. Wax Elemental is probably too weak to find its way into normal Aggro decks, but it might be annoying enough to see play in combination with Prince Keleseth. I doubt that the Elemental minion-type on this card will relevant.

Stoneskin Basilisk

c22.png

Fits into: Don't play this card

Power Versatility
1 1

Divine Shield isn't as good as Stealth and an extra 1/1 in stats, so I'm pretty sure this card is worse than Giant Wasp

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Sleepy Dragon is a Dragon type that image is wrong fix it.

Source: Blizzard Official Website and Hearthstone Top Decks have the correct version

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15 minutes ago, Hanz39 said:

Sleepy Dragon is a Dragon type that image is wrong fix it.

Source: Blizzard Official Website and Hearthstone Top Decks have the correct version

Thanks for the heads up! I've noted that in the set review.

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Regarding Togwaggle, there seems to be a combo with explore Un'goro. I don't think there's a lot of potential in it but any combo that can destroy the opponent's deck does deserve some attention: 

 

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8 hours ago, Aleco said:

 

Zola the Gorgon

leg2.png

Fits into: Quest Rogue

Power Versatility
2 2

As much as I love the gorgonzola joke in this card's name, I don't think Zola has what it takes to see widespread play. She probably makes the cut in decks that care about playing multiple copies of the same card, such as Quest Rogue.

 

I'd say Gorgon Zola (:mirrorshades:) fits in any deck including Valeera the Hollow for even more combo-wombo value. It remains to be seen if Miracle rogue will manage to climb out of the pit it's currently in, though.

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16 minutes ago, Liistrad said:

Regarding Togwaggle, there seems to be a combo with explore Un'goro. I don't think there's a lot of potential in it but any combo that can destroy the opponent's deck does deserve some attention: 

We already have quest mage hanging around, do we really want/need more of things like that?

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8 hours ago, Aleco said:

Spiteful Summoner

ep3.png

Fits into: Big Spells Mage

Power Versatility
3 1

If this can consistently find a spell that costs 4 or more Spiteful Summoner will probably pull its weight. The question is, how many decks will be able to consistently meet that bill? The obvious home for this is the Big Spells Mage deck, but I wouldn't be surprised if there were a few other decks that could consistently hit the 4+ mana cost mark.

I was delighted to hear Trump commenting on an idea apparently floated by Kolento. Picture your regular zoolock, cut soulfires, add two copies of DOOM! and a couple of Spiteful Summoners. 6 mana 4/4 + random 10 drop every time (at least when you don't draw both dooms) seems pog champ. 

Good enough? Eh, most likely not...(?) But sounds fun. 

 

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11 hours ago, Aleco said:

King Togwaggle

leg3.pngleg3-1.png

Fits into: Don't play this card

Alright, you're officially fired Kappa

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11 hours ago, Aleco said:

ep5.png

Fits into: Any deck that runs 4 or more spells which cost 4 or more

Slight error in the fits into

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Thanks for letting me know about all the small issues guys - I've fixed everything that has been mentioned so far. Super excited about he fact that Corridor Creeper is a beast now!

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How would togs and discover un'goro work?    If you play them same turn, the opponent just lifts an eyebrow and does NOT switch decks back.

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I'm having a lot of fun whit The Darkness in the Taver Brawl, you just need to play 2 in a row, then Coldlight Seer till the candels pop, i had a druid quest so i'm bouncing the Coldlight Seer using  Zola the Gorgon, it isn't the best way, but it does the job hahaha.

Another thing that i tried was put Twig of the World Tree and proc the deathrtle chainching it with another copy, sadly, the few times a could manage that, i didn't have Nourish on Ultimate Infestation :(

Edited by Demenzel

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1 hour ago, darquill said:

Thanks for the guide =)

There's a mistake in the Sleepy Dragon title text, it says Hoarding Dragon.

Cheers

Maybe it was hoarding a lot before finally getting some well deserved sleep? :D

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