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TOPIC: Identity Crisis: RNG and Shamans in Hearthstone

Identity Crisis: RNG and Shamans in Hearthstone 11 May 2018 09:28 #273148

In September of 2017, the dev team for Hearthstone ...

In September of 2017, the dev team for Hearthstone implemented a number of nerfs to Basic set cards that they felt were too much of a constant in the game. No Druid deck would ever play without Innervate and no Warrior deck without Fiery War Axe. In Shaman's case, the hammer fell on Hex, which was long regarded as the best single-target removal card in the game. In their explanation for why Shaman had been targeted despite not being anywhere near the top of the meta and with only one mildly competitive deck (Evolve/Jade), they stated that “Shaman is a class that... is lacking in both class identity and identifiable weaknesses.” and that this change had been made to push the class toward achieving both of those goals. At the time, most players would have argued that Shaman was lacking in identifiable strengths, but the change happened and here we are, 9 months later, able to declare partial success: Shaman still lacks an identity, but it has weaknesses aplenty. 

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Identity Crisis: RNG and Shamans in Hearthstone 11 May 2018 13:00 #273155

I appreciate you man. Great article. You hit it out of the park with first paragraph. Really sets the tone and draws me in to want to read more. And tied up nicely with conclusion paragraph. I hope this gets decent views here.

I don’t like the 1/1 searing totem. If they just cut that out and left the other 3 it would be an improvement
Last Edit: 11 May 2018 13:02 by MacDirk Diggler.
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Identity Crisis: RNG and Shamans in Hearthstone 11 May 2018 13:34 #273157

Thanks! There were supposed to be more images to break up the text a bit, but we're having formatting issues, and Matt and Shellie and others are already deep in the weeds trying to get other things on the site changed. So, progress. I expanded the original post about Cathedral Gargoyle and sent that to Matt, as well, so it's in the queue. I'm tinkering with the one about Kripp's DreadCube deck right now. I linked this piece in a response on the main HS sub, which was complaining about that sub being nothing but shitposts and CompetitiveHS being nothing but netdecking advice, so we'll see if we pick up any interest from there.

As for Searing Totem... I think it would serve a purpose if it did something other than just be Shaman's version of a Dude. Granted, it becomes a 3/1 if you drop a Flametongue next to it, but it's usually the least exciting of results. I remember thinking a while back that it could be another 0/2 that deals out 1 damage to a random enemy target at the end of each turn, similarly to how it used to function in WoW. That still wouldn't resolve the RNG problem of both Totemic Call and its targeting, but it would at least be more interesting.

Gotta get to work on some of the TV and film stuff, too...
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Identity Crisis: RNG and Shamans in Hearthstone 17 May 2018 19:20 #273557

Jeebus, I hate Even Shaman. People keep talking it up as "viable", but every time I play it, I feel like I'm out of answers as soon as we hit the midgame and I end up spending I don't know how many turns fruitlessly summoning totems that simply get mowed down by the all the AoE that people have in their decks to deal with Paladin. It remains the main argument I had made in this piece: the RNG still isn't worth the mana risk, but in the case of Even, you end up doing it because there are so many turns where you don't have any other choice because you always have 1 spare mana. The reason Even Paladin works is that you're always gonna get that Dude. If I need to contest the board, my 1 mana gets me... and 0/2 Healing Stream. Maybe this was the deck that Totem Cruncher was intended for...? But, man, that card is still so one-note that I can't bring myself to play it because I know I'll just concede the one time I get an 8/9 Cruncher and my opponent just follows with a Spellbreaker.

I switched over to Midrange and immediately won against Cutlass Rogue by Unstabling out a Deathwing and getting two Ancestral Spirits from Hagatha to keep it going through everything he could throw at it. Considering the number of Shaman cards he got off me and continued to get from me while I tried to beat him down with the Earth Dragon, I was certain a Hex would be in there.
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