This week we bring you a new feature called “What Would DKMR Do?” Each week we’ll present an in-game situation and discuss the possible lines of play. Here’s the game state for this week!
As the Druid, you have many powerful plays this turn, but which, if any, is the best play? For the sake of this scenario let’s assume your opponent has used one Hex and one Earth Shock. Our first consideration in this scenario should be to evaluate whether you believe your opponent possesses the second copy of either of these cards in their hand. While it can be difficult to ascertain this information, your opponent’s previous plays may provide evidence one way or the other. If your opponent used Hex on a non-critical minion, it could indicate they did not value it especially highly since they already have a second copy in hand. Earth Shock is not as easy to evaluate. Since Druid does not run many good targets for Earth Shock, your opponent may have used it for moderate value instead of waiting for the unlikely situation they could have used it for significant value (say on an Ancient of War).
Ancient of Lore is most immune to Hex and Earth Shock. It provides value whether it is Hexed or not and Earth Shock merely helps another card trade up. We would never heal with Ancient of Lore in this situation as we wouldn’t put our opponent on having significant burst. We do have other powerful cards to play though, so if you believe the health could be relevant, it is not entirely unreasonable. It is also noteworthy that if we play Ancient of Lore on this turn we have an Innervate to aid us in playing any of the cards we draw. This allows us to play certain removal such as Swipe or Wrath and Hero Power that can deal with the Fire Elemental if drawn. Note these plays would be Swipe the Fire Elemental, removing the Stoneclaw Totem and allowing our Damaged Golem to trade for the Fire Elemental while Wrath on the Fire Elemental would allow our Damaged Golem to trade for it as well after using the Hero Power to clear the Stoneclaw Totem. Worst case scenario, we don’t draw any follow-up plays and we use our Hero Power to remove the Stoneclaw Totem and either deal 2 damage to Thrall with the Golem or remove the Wrath of Air Totem. We are left with a 2/1 and 5/5 on board and 6 cards in hand to our opponents Fire Elemental and 5 cards in hand after they draw. This play puts us in a strong position and does not leave us especially susceptible to Hex. However, we do lose the opportunity cost of making a much stronger play such as Ragnaros or Ancient of War.
Both Ragnaros and Ancient of War progress our board position much more aggressively but leave us more open to Hex and Earth Shock. Ragnaros is likely our most powerful play in this situation as it is our most reliable means for potentially removing the Fire Elemental. Not only that, but it provides some immediate value (damage or removal) and requires our opponent to have Hex or trade his Fire Elemental (if it lives) and a second card for Ragnaros. If we play Ragnaros, our turn is almost surely to activate Shapeshift to remove the Stoneclaw Totem and using the Damaged Golem to remove the Wrath of Air Totem. This maximizes the odds that Ragnaros will remove the Fire Elemental. It’s also notable that playing Ragnaros will almost certainly let you know if your opponent has their second Hex. Unless the Fire Elemental lives and your opponent has their second Flametongue Totem, your opponent will likely Hex Ragnaros or use Lightning Bolt plus Fire Elemental. Either way, your opponent will likely spend time considering their options if they have Hex, allowing you to gauge the likelihood of your Ancient of War being Hexed later.
You could alternatively use the Ancient of War to draw out Hex. Ancient of War also notably plays around a Leeroy Jenkins, Rockbiter Weapon, and Windfury lethal if you know your opponent is playing the combo. We would be hesitant to put my opponent on the combo, however, as it requires three of their four cards and they still have a good bit of their deck left. The combo is also used less frequently than Al’Akir or Bloodlust. While you may still favor playing Ancient of War, we would not allow the threat of the Leeroy combo to factor too heavily in the decision. Even so, healing with Ancient of Lore would play around the combo more effectively since Ancient of War can be Earth Shocked while healing puts you completely out of range.
Savage Roar has few applications on this turn but is worth noting for the future burst potential it provides. It could be another reason to play Ancient or Lore as drawing Force of Nature could set up lethal on the following turn if the Ancient is not dealt with.
So what play would you make? Let us know in the comments! We’ll discuss your comments on this situation as well as a new situation next week. Keep track of your decks on www.Hearthstats.net it is the best way to compare what is working and what is not!
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