This card is used in
23.71% of all Mage decks
Fantastic secret card.
When Ice Block triggers due to fatal damage, it prevents all of that damage from happening. Taking 8 damage in a single hit when you have 5 HP left, you would become immune, prevent all 8 damage, and still have 5 HP left.
"Secrets can only activate on your opponent’s turn" since the
11 March 2014 patch
. This means you can die to fatigue damage at the start of your turn, or to various things like killing an enemy
during your turn even if you have an Ice Block in play.
If both Ice Block and
are in play, and Ice Block triggers first (because Ice Block was put into play before Ice Barrier) due to a minion attacking the hero physically, the Mage becomes Immune, takes no damage, and Ice Barrier does not trigger.
Once a Mage goes Immune due to Ice Block, the Mage is
no longer a valid target
for attacks, spells, battlecries or random effects. If you have any remaining minions that have not attacked yet, and the enemy Mage has no minions on the board, they will lose their green border indicating they cannot attack since there is no valid target to attack. Spells that can only target an enemy hero will also lose their "castable" green outline status.
This is a situational card. By itself it isn't that great because many people find that if you are already about to lose, it is unlikely you would swing the game around next turn, and replacing Ice Block with another card that might have allowed you to win earlier might be better.
Even so, an extra turn is an extra turn, and that might be all you needed. An entire "genre" of decks have revolved around buying time so that the Mage can finish off the enemy with huge minions (Frost Giants deck with
Ragnaros the Firelord
), or with huge spells (
stall deck), or the Freeze Mage deck popularized by RDU's win at DreamHack Summer 2014 (uses 2x
). Other spells that buy time are
, and even the neutral minion
(your enemy has to spend 7 damage or otherwise killing it).
When attacking an enemy Mage that you suspect to have Ice Block in play, try to bring him down to as close to 1 HP as possible before attempting to deliver the killing blow. For example, if you have 3 minions that can do 1, 2 and 5 damage respectively and the enemy has 4 health only, attack with the 1 and 2 damage minions first, this means he starts his next turn at 1 HP. If you attack with the 5 damage minion first, it will trigger Ice Block and your 2 smaller minions will be unable to do any damage, and he starts his next turn with 4 HP.
Ice Block is a secret that doesn't trigger until you're about to die. This has 2 side effects.
The enemy will begin to play sub-optimally until he can deduce that the Secret in play isn't one of the other 5 possible Mage Secrets. However, this isn't necessarily true in high level constructed play, for example, the Freeze Mage only have Ice Barriers and Ice Blocks in the deck.
Because this secret lasts almost the entire duration of the game, it guarantees that the
comes into play as a 5/5, and it will keep growing and requires immediate enemy attention to either remove it or silence it.
If you have this in your deck, you should cast this Secret early whenever you have excess mana lying around.
Watch out. When using this secret to avoid fatal damage from fatigue, the game will freeze
This card is annoying to deal with, and has cost me a lot of games as a Rogue. Unless you specifically have a card to remove secrets such as
, your options are very limited, even if you already found out that it is in fact Ice Block.
The best way I found to deal with this, is to lower their health as much as you can, before dealing the killing blow. None of the blows before the killing blow is negated, only the final hit.
For example, if a mage has 5 health, and you have a 4/4 and a 1/1 on the board.
If you attack with the 1/1 first, then the 4/4, the damage of the 4/4 will be negated, and the mage will enter the next turn with 4 health
Alternatively, If you simply switch the order, the mage will have the least possible remaining health entering into the next turn.
playing this card very early in-game when having a
avaible on the field or hand. will allow you too buff it for so long. and opponents will go mad trying too trigger the secret in order too prevent it buffing
more each round.
Some say the world will end in fire,
Some say in ice.
From what I’ve tasted of desire
I hold with those who favor fire.
But if it had to perish twice,
I think I know enough of hate
To say that for destruction ice
Is also great
And would suffice.
Fire and Ice - Archmage Robert Frost
This is probably the one card where I think the non-gold version looks better. There's just something hilarious about the smug look on the mage's face that makes me smile.
I'm not sure if this is intended or not, but this card does NOT prevent 'fatigue' damage from being out of cards. I have lost two or three times with this in play, taking fatal damage due to being out of cards in my deck.
I'm not 100% as to why this is the case, as the text on the card is, "Secret: When your hero takes fatal damage, prevent it and become Immune this turn."
When you receive fatigue damage, it says, "Out of cards. Take X damage."
Being an ex MTG player a few years back, I would assume that taking x damage would be a condition of triggering Ice Block.
I have sent a ticket in to Blizzard about this, but there is very little about this particular interaction about on the internet :)
Regardless, this comment is just here to warn people about it NOT preventing 'fatigue' damage.
I've built a deck with this card included and I just devastated a Shaman player who even told me "That was a mistake" the turn he was going to kill me. He had 6 points left and I took him down with a fireball after he couldn't kill me. It rocked.
I wouldn't call this card situational.
Let me ask you a question? How many times have you said "No, I win next turn!"?
This card has won me so many games, especially when you get to high ranks and matches become intense nail-biters.
It is among my favorite cards and deserving of it's epic quality.
any lethal damage. So if you have 8HP and they pyroblast you, that's lethal damage. All of that damage is ignored, so you still have 8HP (it doesn't reduce you to 1HP)
There is something very satisfying with winning due to this card, because you know the other player is jumping up and down banging his keyboard screaming "f---ing blizzard!"
Just remember that fatigue damage (or any other damage on your turn) will kill you. So be careful about drawing too much, or popping Leper Gnomes or Abominations.
I actually just watched a game a few days ago where one player won by triggering the secret, then forcing his opponent to draw the rest of his cards by dealing 3 singular points of damage to an
Acolyte of Pain
, and letting him die to the fatigue damage on the mage's turn.
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