Hearthstone – Blackrock Mountain Wing 1

In what is becoming a clear business plan, with each year another Hearthstone single player expansion comes along to make us depart with our hard earned gold or real life currency. This year, we pay a visit to Blackrock Mountain, a place established in the Warcraft lore since the first games, where lots of bosses and unlockable cards await. As opposed to last year’s Curse of Naxxramas, the first wing is no longer free during the first month of launch and each wing costs 700 gold or several dollars/euros.

Speaking of which, the first wing is entitled Blackrock Depths and features 3 bosses and 2 class challenges:

The first boss you encounter is Coren Direbrew, inside the Grim Guzzler, the best (and probably only) tavern inside the mountain.

Brawl!

Brawl!

 

Coren’s ability is quite a simple and entertaining one, a 0-mana auto-cast that puts a minion from each deck into play. This can result in some hilariously fast and spectacular games, with 8-9 mana legendaries on turn 1. For one of these examples, watch the clip further down the page in the Hunter Challenge section.

His minions are varied, from a few unique minions that guaranteed win at the Brawls, to a spell that summons 4 1/1 taunts and 2 Tanks. Interestingly enough, he doesn’t abuse this power by putting in large minions in his deck, which is understandable, being the first boss. Tactics for this one involve milling him, filling your deck with large minions or just playing control.

As a reward, you get one of the better cards: the Grim Patron

This minion works very well in a few circumstances, but is particularly shines in Warrior decks, where the obvious combo is Warsong Commander + Grim Patron + Inner Rage + Inner Rage on new Patron + Whirlwind. 22 damage right there.

This minion works very well in a few circumstances, but is particularly shines in Warrior decks, where the obvious combo is Warsong Commander + Grim Patron + Inner Rage + Inner Rage on new Patron + Whirlwind. 22 damage right there.

The middle boss is High Justice Grimstone, master of the Dark Iron Arena.

Let's get ready to rumble

Let’s get ready to rumble

Looking at his hero power, the most obvious classes you may want to choose are Mage, Druid or Rogue (you get to kill 2 of them for 2 Mana). As for minions, he has legendaries. Only legendaries. Even Manastorm. That may lead to some very funny situations in future, where this guy may get double Pyroblasted, double Fireballed on turn 3. A control deck is recommended here.

The reward for this encounter is Gang Up.

This is a pretty hard card to get a grasp on, because although it may not do anything immediately, if the game drags out enough it may prove incredibly valuable. The best case scenario is casting it when you have almost run out of cards (which doesn’t happen that often) on a powerful minion, thus gaining more steam and card advantage.

This is a pretty hard card to get a grasp on, because although it may not do anything immediately, if the game drags out enough it may prove incredibly valuable. The best case scenario is casting it when you have almost run out of cards (which doesn’t happen that often) on a powerful minion, thus gaining more steam and card advantage.

The last boss of the wing is Emperor Thaurissan, who has a pretty unfair ability.

Don't touch his wife! Instant death!

Don’t touch his wife! Instant death!

Do not fret, because there is a catch. On the board stands his wife, Moira, a 1/3 minion who attacks only the hero or a taunt. So no taunts (at least that deal damage) or board wipes allowed. This gets especially difficult on Heroic, as you will see.

For this last encounter, you receive 2 cards:

There is a right way and a wrong way to use this card. The right way is in the early game to get another body on board (possibly a 2, 3 or 4 drop). The wrong way is in the late game when you might get a 2-drop or worse. It resembles the Mage’s Unstable Portal a bit, only instead of a random minion from the entire card collection appearing in your hand at a lower cost, it summons into play a minion which you lost during the game. It’s a fun card, but it isn’t as good as Unstable Portal.

There is a right way and a wrong way to use this card. The right way is in the early game to get another body on board (possibly a 2, 3 or 4 drop). The wrong way is in the late game when you might get a 2-drop or worse. It resembles the Mage’s Unstable Portal a bit, only instead of a random minion from the entire card collection appearing in your hand at a lower cost, it summons into play a minion which you lost during the game. It’s a fun card, but it isn’t as good as Unstable Portal.

This card is the best legendary in this set. Combined with stealth spells (the spare part, Rogue spells, Master of Disguise etc.) and costly cards in your hand, it could lead to some massive value. The fact that the effect is applied at the end of your turn means a great deal, because even if you immediately lose it, it still adds a lot of value.

This card is the best legendary in this set. Combined with stealth spells (the spare part, Rogue spells, Master of Disguise etc.) and costly cards in your hand, it could lead to some massive value. The fact that the effect is applied at the end of your turn means a great deal, because even if you immediately lose it, it still adds a lot of value.

As for the Heroic mode, here are the powers:

bosses H

The first boss grows a lot more powerful, thanks to the extra minion it summons for himself. Also, the 2nd has a free taunt every turn, thus leaving him more mana for legendaries and the last one has his wife at 3/1 instead of 1/3. Also, each also gains 15 armor to start with.

Regarding class challenges, the Hunter must face the Grim Guzzler with what seems like a Beast deck.

The reward is probably the most unfair thing I have ever seen:

As if there weren’t enough Face hunters... This card is a Dark Bomb with an extra bonus. It is a great card for a class that is already very powerful.

As if there weren’t enough Face hunters… This card is a Dark Bomb with an extra bonus. It is a great card for a class that is already very powerful.

The second class challenge is for the Mage, whose whole deck is nothing but Unstable Portals. Fun, fun, fun. However, the reward is not.

It’s sad to see one of my favorite Mage spells from WoW reduced to a very situational card. I think you’re better off with Frostbolt.

It’s sad to see one of my favorite Mage spells from WoW reduced to a very situational card. I think you’re better off with Frostbolt.

So what did the first week of Blackrock Mountain bring? The best legendary of the lot, a decent minion for Warriors, a great spell, 2 situational ones and a very situational one. Here’s hoping the rest will be better. Cheers!


I'm an engineer, currently employed at a financial software company. My interests include gaming, LPing and, of course, reviewing, but also game dev and graphics. Also, in the past I've dabbled in amateur photography, reviewing movies and writing short stories and blog posts. I am also a huge Song of Ice and Fire fan, but that's beside the point. Youtube Channel, Deviantart , Google + , Twitter

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