A total of 45 new cards are being added with the release of the League of Explorers. Included in that are two commons and a rare for each of the respective classes. Today we're starting off with a look at the first five: Druid, Hunter, Mage, Paladin, and Priest. We'll be following this up tomorrow with the rest of the classes and concluding our reviews on Wednesday with the majority of the Neutrals.

You'll begin seeing these on Thursday with the release of the Temple of Orsis wing which we preview here.
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Druid

Jungle Moonkin

At BlizzCon, Hearthstone developers admitted that this is the most Spell Damage they've ever put on a single card that isn't Malygos and therefore it's very volatile. Against an aggressive deck that uses burst spells like Hunter or a more control oriented one like Mage, this can be a very risky card to play. As such, it's unclear as to whether or not it will actually see play in constructed. It's probably most comparable to Savage Combatant due to the fact that you never just want to play it by itself on the field, you'll usually want to have other Mana to allocate as fit.

Druid is one of the strongest classes for spell power with huge swing cards like Swipe and other highly influential cards such as Wrath and Living Roots.

As such, we think it'll be a niche card for inclusion in spell power decks like Control / Spell Damage Druid.

Mounted Raptor

The three mana slot has always been one of Druid's biggest weaknesses. Druid of the Flame is okay at best while Grove Tender only sees play in Mill decks. Aside from the combo potential, this is one of the main reasons you frequently see Shade of Naxxramas in most, if not all, decklists. The addition of Mounted Raptor should help bolster its curve a bit, though there may be some concern over the fact that in an ideal situation the Druid skips turn three thanks to Wild Growth or Darnassus Aspirant. And despite what you might think, there are actually a bunch of good 1 Mana drops that can come out of it.

Raven Idol

Honestly the biggest question about Raven Idol is whether or not you can fit it into the deck. With such an intense focus on ramp and high mana cost creatures, there isn't a ton of room for cards that aren't guaranteed value. There may be some argument towards cutting Living Roots in favor of something that could potentially be better, but you have to remember that it can also be worse. Living Roots has incredible flexibility in that it can help stall against aggression, push for damage, or help you fill the board for Savage Roar.

That said, there's such a wide number of cards that could come out of Raven Idol. Seven Mana for another Force of Nature? Not bad. Or maybe Eight Mana for a third Ancient of Lore. And because you get to choose between three different cards, you have less of a chance to simply get stuck with a dud.

Hunter

Explorer's Hat

Okay, so no Hunter deck currently out there would benefit from Explorer's Hat. Many were confused as to why the class would even need a card like this, but a Frazer_TV made an excellent video on how it essentially gives Hunter the option to replace its hero power with something that helps board control. So if that ever becomes a thing, maybe we'll see a bit of it, but we would advise you not to hold your breath.

Desert Camel

This camel is nuts. There are no other three drop minions in the Hunter class that are currently being run and you can probably expect to see this one. It's of huge benefit to the Hunter if the opponent doesn't have any 1-Cost minions in their deck and on top of that it also has some really solid stats with four health.

Look at it this way: it's not strictly worse than Leokk, Misha, or Huffer. Considering that, there's a chance we'll actually see it played, especially in some of the Hybrid Hunter decklists.

Dart Trap

The one thing Hunter secrets have had going for them is that they're consistent. Dart Trap is the first exception in that it deals 5 damage to a random enemy. It could be face, it could be a high value target, or it could be that 1/1 Webspinner. Therefore we don't expect to see much of this at all, it's arguably worse than Bear Trap and that doesn't see a ton of play either.

Mage

Animated Armor

The four mana slot of Mage is actually surprisingly crowded. Water Elemental easily remains the staple of that, but [card=36111 may just contend as a tech card in a highly aggressive meta. It has a pseudo-Taunt due to the fact that unless they're actually dealing one damage at a time, no one is going to want to simply let this exist. It does however offer something that no minion with Taunt can: protection from spell damage burst. Whereas Hunters can choose to ignore your Taunt minions and simply use Kill Command and the like on your face, this prevents that from happening and is a completely unique offering thus far in Hearthstone.

Ethereal Conjurer

On stats alone this Conjurer is just too weak. It can be killed by most two drops and that alone detracts from most of the value that it brings to the table. In essence it's a two mana cheaper Nexus-Champion Saraad that can only be activated once, gives you a choice between three spells, and has one more attack at the cost of two health. And even though that sounds okay, it really isn't just because of how fragile this minion is. Playing it is basically just throwing away a card.

Forgotten Torch

Value! You'll probably see Forgotten Torch contend for spots in the average Freeze Mage deck. It simultaneously offers early board clear while giving you a 3-Cost Fireball.

Paladin

Anyfin Can Happen

This marks the second content release in a row that Blizzard has been pushing Murloc Paladin decks. Murloc Knight is indeed a fantastic fit for that deck but it didn't really do anything but strengthen the fourth and sixth turns for Paladins.

Anyfin Can Happen serves as an interesting card for Casual play and Tavern Brawls, giving you a way of summoning any combination of 7 Murlocs that died this game.

.@IplaiGames @RobertAWing Nope! Anyfin Can Happen summons one Murloc for each Murloc that has fallen, up to a maximum of seven.

The main problem lies in the fact that a 10 Mana card pretty much needs to win you the game, and this really doesn't do that. There's no guarantee that the Murlocs it spawns will immediately give you the win with how many great board clears there are these days.

Keeper of Uldaman

The only other four drop minion in the Paladin's arsenal is Murloc Knight which is most certainly better than this. On top of that you have all the neutrals including Piloted Shredder. Those two facts alone make us hesitant to say this will see any Constructed action. It might not be bad at all in Arena though, especially as a common.

Sacred Trial

Well the good news is that Sacred Trial doesn't make Secret Paladin any better than it already is against Control decks. That considered, Secret Pally was already incredibly strong against Aggro decks that just don't have the resources to be able to push through the incredible walls that Mysterious Challenger and Tirion Fordring put up. So as long as we continue to see board presence remain a premium, we'd expect to see this sneak into most Secret Paladin decks.

Priest

Museum Curator

Museum Curator is basically trash. A 2 Mana card that only sports 1/2 in stats and simply Discovers you a card with Deathrattle? Even if that's something like Sylvanas Windrunner, you've still put yourself incredibly behind in the early game where Priest struggles to begin with. Therefore this should see little to no play in Constructed, might be a different story in Arena however.

Excavated Evil

Another relatively abysmal card. Excavated Evil has no reason to be run over Holy Nova which does one less damage, yes, but also heals you for two and doesn't give the opponent the same damage you just gave them. There's some argument towards the fact that in a pure aggro meta this might make sense because Control decks really aren't going to be phased by three damage, and it does give them an extra card that they don't want, but overall it's probably just not worth it.

Entomb

Entomb is honestly one of our favorite cards from the set. Basically a Recycle that puts the enemy minion into your own deck, you not only get to skirt any Deathrattles but the card gets added to your own arsenal later in the game. On top of that it's only 6 Mana, so you can play something alongside it such that your turn wasn't completely about removal. Control Priests are going to be stealing Tirion Fordrings for days.

What are your thoughts on the cards we've discussed so far? We'll be back tomorrow with the rest of the cards for the four remaining classes.

Want another take? Our YouTube channel has a second opinion on every card.