The Knights of the Frozen Throne expansion has been out now for a few weeks now, and players have been busy busting open thousands of KFT card packs in the hopes of hearing the Innkeeper’s voice ring out the words “LEGENDARRRY.”
Common cards are often overlooked due to this factor, but let’s be honest, where would Hearthstone be without this card tier? Previously, we’ve covered the best Death Knights from bottom to top. Now let’s check out the rest of the cards and see which ones deserve the most use, be it in Constructed or Arena format.
Chillblade Champion is one of the many cards in the new expansion to use the new Lifesteal mechanic (damage done by the minion heals the player’s life total.) As a charge minion with lifesteal, it is good for slowing down aggressive decks.
Constructed decks: The Paladin has so many great 4-mana cards, but this card just doesn’t come close to getting the same amount of value as other cards such as Truesilver Champion or Consecration.
Arena decks: Chillblade Champion is a weak card in Arena. Lifesteal offers almost no value and just ends up being a more expensive Wolfrider in every situation.
Grim Necromancer is a fairly weak card. Although the combined stats of all the minions summoned by the card are excellent for the cost, the distribution of the stats make it inefficient at trading compared to other 4-cost common cards such as Chillwind Yeti (4:5)
Constructed decks: This card might be viable in the popular aggressive token druid and shaman evolve decks as it is a neutral minion.
Arena decks: Below average, but if you are offered it late into your deck draft it should be considered if you are lacking 4-mana picks.
Snowflipper Penguin is the Beast equivalent of Wisp. Although it is a weak card, the fact that it is a beast means that it may function as a free activator for beast synergy cards such as Kill Command. (Plus, it is adorable according to the Lich King.)
Constructed decks: Snowflipper Penguin should be added in any highly aggressive Beast decks. However, it offers little to no value in any other decks.
Arena decks: The penguin is terrible in Arena, as it often comes down to trying to get a card advantage over your opponents and a 0-cost 1/1 will almost always die for free is simply a waste of a card slot.
Sunborne Val’kyr can generate a ton of value when played, enabling better board trades using the minions that it buffs. It has reasonable base stats for a 5-mana cost card.
Constructed decks: Sunborne Val’kyr can represent a lot of stats, but it’s not good enough for most Constructed decks. The extra 4 health means that it will not be particularly difficult to deal with and the buff requires two minions to be present on board to get the full value of this card.
Arena decks: Sunborne Val’kyr is a good card in Arena. It has reasonable enough stats to contest the board when played, and the buffs it gives to adjacent minions are permanent and can be used immediately.
Cobalt Scalebane has a relevant ability and is a Dragon. As a stand-alone card, this means that it has enough value to be worthy of consideration in decks. It should be noted though that because the ability takes effect at the end of the turn, your opponent will get a chance to react to the buff before you can use it.
Constructed decks: Cobalt Scalebane is a decent card in Constructed play. It may not have the power level of Drakonid Operative (an unfair comparison, come to think of it), but for situations where the Operative is unavailable or where you want a third 5-drop in a Dragon deck, the Scalebane is good enough to be included.
Arena decks: Cobalt Scalebane is a good card in Arena. It has good stats and the ability to impact the board. The threat of both a minion with a +3 buff and playing a 5/5 on the same turn will often give your opponent too many questions to answer at once.
Tuskarr Fisherman can be compared with Kobold Geomancer. Although it has an important extra point of Health compared to the Geomancer, the condition imposed is very large. If the Spell Damage is important in the deck, you would rather it not be conditional as you will often want to use that Spell Damage on the turn it is put into play.
Constructed decks: In Constructed play, Tuskarr Fisherman misses out because Kobold Geomancer and Bloodmage Thalnos are more reliable.
Arena decks: In Arena, Tuskarr Fisherman is an average card. It is usually going to be the same as River Crocolisk, with the occasional bonus for the Spell Damage.
Stitched Tracker’s cost is appropriate on stand-alone value. The ability “Discover” is better than “Draw a Card”. Because of this, this card is well-suited for fixing your curve and for use in a toolkit style deck with many one-off cards with widely differing effects. Unfortunately, Stitched Tracker is not a Beast, which severely limits the decks it can be played in.
Constructed decks: In Constructed play, Stitched Tracker has very specific uses. It is good for fetching Legendary cards such as N’Zoth, the Corruptor to help finish a game. However, as it is not a Beast, it is ruled out of serious Constructed decks.
Arena decks: Stitched Tracker is a playable card in Arena, but it should not be counted as a 3-drop on curve. It is far better played on later turns as a way to fetch your bombs from your deck. Playing Stitched Tracker on curve is not powerful enough to contest the board.
Frozen Clone gives up a lot of tempo in exchange for value. It gives twice as much value as Mirror Entity, but at the cost of having to play the minions from hand. With larger minions, this is problematic as you have to deal with the minion that your opponent played as well as playing the minion yourself. If you copy smaller minions instead, you are better off playing Arcane Intellect.
Constructed decks: Frozen Clone is powerful in Mage decks that are designed to go to the late-game. Such decks can survive the early rush, and then use Frost Clone to refill. With good timing, you can force an opponent to either play something small on a turn where they want to start to play large minions or to give you two threats yourself.
Arena decks: In Arena, Frozen Clone is an above-average card. The value versus tempo equation balances out very close to even, meaning that the cards gained will be great as the game goes on, but will subject you to early pressure.
Drakkari Defender has incredible stats for a card that can be played for 3 Mana, but an Overload cost of 3 is a very big price to pay. This Overload means that over two turns, 6 Mana is spent on this minion, and so the upside of playing it early needs to be very big to make up for the downside of spending so much Mana. The best use of this card is not to play it on Turn 3, but instead to play it on a later turn alongside a minion that you wish to protect, such as Mana Tide Totem.
Constructed Decks: In Standard play, Drakkari Defender lacks the synergy to make the most of its downside. If you delay playing it until later, then there will be better minions available, whilst if you play it on curve, it ruins your next turn entirely. In Wild, the card is viable due to the presence of Tunnel Trogg, which helps to mitigate some of the downside of the Overload.
Arena Decks: In Arena, Drakkari Defender is a mediocre card. It can be played to protect utility minions, or to defend important minions from trades when setting up lethal. It is weak in the early game however, as the overload is too restrictive when trying to play minions on curve. It should be considered as a 6-drop or higher when drafting.
Spirit Lash is a great spell for the Priest arsenal. It serves a similar function to Wild Pyromancer that has regularly seen play in Priest decks, providing a cheap AoE (area of effect) effect to stop the most aggressive decks. Spirit Lash also damages friendly minions in the same way as Wild Pyromancer, which is often regarded as a positive effect due to healing synergies such as Northshire Cleric.
Constructed decks: Spirit Lash is a great choice for spell-heavy Priest decks. It can be used either instead of or alongside Wild Pyromancer as a board control tool and a simple method of damaging minions for healing synergies where necessary.
Arena decks: Spirit Lash is a weak card in Arena. The AoE effect of the card is generally too weak to achieve any value, while the fact it also damages friendly minions makes it even harder to utilise. Although the card also has a Lifesteal effect, this offers almost no value in Arena as tempo is much more important than Hero Health.
Bonemare is a straightforward but potentially powerful card. It is worth bearing in mind when considering this card, that it is still a conditional card, even though the condition (of having a minion on board) is easy to fulfill.
Constructed decks: In Constructed, Bonemare suffers from competition for the 7-slot. The Curator often provides more value in that slot, while 7 Mana is often reserved for exceptional cards in more aggressive decks.
Arena Decks: In Arena, Bonemare is a very good card. The main body of the minion is a decent size, and it will almost always get to activate its effect, which is very powerful.
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