Ding dong, the Shaman’s dead! Well, injured at least. The pre-holidays Hearthstone patch took a hammer to Galakrond Shaman’s key cards, upping the mana cost for key cards like Corrupt Elementalist and Mogu Fleshshaper while weakening Sludge Slurper and Faceless Corruptor in the process.
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That alone won’t necessarily keep Galakrond Shaman out of your ranked games, but it does mean that their tempo clock’s gotten more lenient for their adversaries. Here’s how to take advantage of that lapse until the next patch – scheduled for January 5.
Post-Nerf Tips And Tricks
Without the late-game threat of a multi-Invoked Galakrond facing them down, ye olde Face Hunters are having a grand time of it in ranked.
There’s nothing particularly unexpected about the archetype—though more advanced players may take more care with the when and why they’re casting specific cards, it’s not as if there’s any stage of the game where the opponent’s going to be happy with taking three Leper Gnomes to the face. And that’s exactly what Face Hunters are up to now, thanks to Descent of Dragon’s Toxic Reinforcements rewarding usages of Hunter’s hero power.
There Can Only Be One
Highlander decks are also increasingly prevalent, thanks to yet another powerful card added to their list of “things that care about singletons.” Dragonqueen Alexstrasza joins Zephyrs the Great and Dinotamer Brann as the core of Highlander Hunter, rewarding their card diversity with a flight of late-game threats to contend with.
But it isn’t just Hunters getting on the Highlander action. Mages will be running Reno the Relicologist from Saviors of Uldum to complement Alextrasza, while Rogues have been spotted with Galakrond-based variants, reusing the Necrium/Mechanical Whelp core alongside Zephrys and Alexstrasza to some effect.
Good as Gold
Finally, Paladins are experiencing a resurgence thanks to cards like Lightforged Crusader and Lightforged Zealot, pushing the Paladins-only theme alongside the tools they got from Saviors of Uldum. This is a straightforward deck—half of it is sticking mechas onto Glow-Tron to make a beefier robot, and the rest are just really good cards that hit the board and don’t need much in terms of fancy backup. Lightforged Crusader keeps your engine going late into the game, while Amber Watcher’s big chunk of healing makes up for early-game mishaps.
Unfortunately, while straightforwardness may be easy to play, it also means the deck doesn’t have as an explosive potential as its peers.
Written ByJames Chen@Obscurica