LOTI #012 – Legend of the Innkeeper – “Arena Wrap Up”
Welcome to the Legend of the Innkeeper. I’m Vastidious and I’m Ariannwyn. We’re glad you could join us for our twelfth episode.
This week we are talking about…
What did you do this week?
Top 3 of the week – Heroes
Vastidious: Hunter, Warlock, Shaman, Priest, Paladin, Druid and Warrior. Sometimes even Mage and Rogue.
Ariannwyn: Priest, Priest, Priest
1. The Big Nerf
Zeriyah from Blizzard posted on Thursday:
“Both before and after the release of Curse of Naxxramas: A Hearthstone Adventure, we have been monitoring card balance as more Hearthstone games are played along with the new cards that have been added. After careful consideration we have decided to make balance changes to Leeroy Jenkins (Neutral) and Starving Buzzard (Hunter).
The following balance changes will be made in an upcoming patch:
- Leeroy Jenkins now costs 5 (up from 4)
- Starving Buzzard now costs 5 (up from 2) and now has 3 Attack and 2 Health (up from 2 Attack and 1 Health)
Leeroy Jenkins created a strategy that revolved around trying to defeat your opponent in one turn without requiring any cards on the board. Fighting for board control and battles between minions make an overall game of Hearthstone more fun and compelling, but taking 20+ damage in one turn is not particularly fun or interactive. This was occurring when Leeroy was used in combination with other cards like Power Overwhelming, Faceless Manipulator, Cold Blood, Shadowstep, and Unleash the Hounds, among others.
The amount of cards Starving Buzzard allowed Hunter players to draw ultimately ended up being too excessive for its low cost. This change will allow the Hunter’s opponent more time to react to both the Starving Buzzard and the cards drawn by its power.
Expert cards that are being changed can be disenchanted for their full cost for a limited time once this balance change goes live. The currently targeted date of this balance change is September 22nd.
After these balance changes go live on September 22nd, we will not be making additional card changes between September 22nd and the Hearthstone World Championship at BlizzCon.
We will continue to make balance changes to Hearthstone only when we feel they are completely necessary in order to increase the variety of cards seen at all levels of play and make Hearthstone a more fun and interactive game for everyone.”
Getting Better – Arena Wrap Up “What we have learned”
1. Quality minions (Importance of Chillwind Yeti)
2. Removal removal removal
3. Mana curve
1. Board control (Reddit comment: “The most common mistake I see (as someone who averages 6.5 wins) is people trying to sneak damage in when they should be making a favourable (or even) trade. The damage will come later when you have board control. There are definitely times where you should be going face, but most often that should be when you have a clear finish in mind (pyroblast/fireballs in hand, etc). When in doubt, simplify the board.”)
2. Keep in mind the stages of the game (Mulligan, Early game, Mid game, Late game)
3. Making wise trades/ Mana efficiency
Pushing for Lethal Damage
The only reason why you should choose to attack your opponent rather than trade minions is to push them within the kill range. When pushing for lethal, you should always have a finisher or a backup plan (strong removal, direct damage, silence to break through taunters) in your hand if you consider your opponent capable of finding a solution to the current state of the board.
Each time you allow your opponent to have priority when trading minions, you run a great risk of losing any hard earned advantage you have made in the earlier stages of the game. The trade can turn out to be much worse than you initially estimated, and can potentially shift the state of the board in your opponent’s favour, which is why you should always consider whether it is worth taking the risk.
There are several factors you should consider before you decide swapping from efficient minion trading to pushing your opponent within kill range.
- Your deck and mana curve. When playing an extremely aggressive deck, you will often have an outstanding early-mid game plan, however the late game will be mediocre at best, and every big minion your opponent plays is a potential 2-for-1, which is why you should push for lethal when you consider your opponent’s late game stronger than yours.
- Your opponent’s class and AoE damage spells. When your opponent plays a class that has decent mass removal, you should consider the previous stages of the game. If your opponent was offered a 2-for-1 or more and did not use theirConsecration, Holy Nova, Flamestrike, or other mass removal when they were under pressure, it is unlikely that they have it in their hand. The possibility of your opponent drawing a solution from the top of their deck remains, and you always run a small risk of that happening.
- Your hand. When you are are holding on to a response to your opponent’s most threatening defensive plays possible, you should always go for the kill. Silence, strong minion removal, direct damage spells, weapons and minions with charge should build up your confidence and help you decide whether or not you should push for the kill.
- Your state of the game. When you fall behind and you consider your deck incapable of providing you with solutions to the current state of the board, you should always consider going in for the kill and letting your opponent deal with the board while you hope to topdeck a solid finisher.
Whenever you decide to push your opponent for lethal damage, evaluate your hand, position on the board, and your opponent’s likely responses to your play. If you consider it to be worth the risk, go for it.
Racing Your Opponent
When you decide to go for your opponent’s face and your opponent responds aggressively by attacking your hero rather than trading minions, you should consider the following scenarios if you are unable kill your opponent on the following turn.
- Your opponent has a strong finisher and is trying to push you in kill range.
- Your opponent is not satisfied with a potential 2-for-1 use of an AoE damage spell.
- Your opponent has no solutions to the current state of the board and is hoping for a good draw.
In most scenarios, you will make the right choice by playing it safe and minimizing the risk by going back to efficient minion trading, however if you consider your finisher strong enough to seal the deal on its own the turn after and your health high enough to take another swing and remain outside your opponent’s kill range, you can go for the kill.
Knowing each class, its strengths and its weaknesses is crucial when it comes down to deck construction during the drafting stages of the Arena.
(Which may be what we will cover next)
Reviews and Emails
iTunes Reviews: We did have a two more ratings but no reviews.
I recently found your podcast on itunes. I’ve been listening to others and found that L.O.T.I. is more my speed. You touch on the casual side of the game while still appeasing my appetite for the competitive side.
I’ve also heard that you all are in N.C. I live just south of Raleigh! I used to hold WoW TCG nights at my local comic shop. But I’m sad to say that since the game has passed, the shop does not have a need for the game. We still play, just not at the shop. So… I’ve gotten into Hearthstone! But alas, my WoW TCG friends refuse to play the CCG version
Keep up the great work and I appreciate the work that you do with the podcast.
Just wanted to say I love the podcast, I’ve been listening since the beginning and I can really relate as I play Hearthstone and have recently introduced it to my daughter as well.
I wanted to let you know that even though I am probably a tad more hardcore than your target audience as I’ve been an avid CCG player for 20 years, I really enjoy the casual perspective of the podcast, and even though I’ve played well over 1000 games of Hearthstone, I still come away learning a thing or two from each episode.
As far as arena goes, I strongly suggest you to not put a big emphasis on which classes are represented on Hearthstats. I myself have had the best runs by playing hunter which is classified as one of the worst classes. I find the key to being successful as hunter in arena is drafting as many scavenging hyenas and houndmasters as you see and then always taking beasts over anything else. The best draft I’ve ever had (11 wins) I had 4 hyenas and 2 houndmasters in the deck. The hyenas chain off of each other very well and demand the opponent to waste removal on them allowing your other creatures a clear path. If you can draft an unleash the hounds and play it with 2 hyenas out, you can swing for a ton by using the hounds to clear their board. The houndmasters make any beast a tank as well as giving you a 4/3 body to boot.
Keep up the amazing work!
5 stars from Canada!
Twitter: Up to 60 followers and we are having some fun conversations with fans.
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Until next show, Happy gaming!
Music by James Marantette – https://soundcloud.com/james-marantette