Hearthstone’s Leeroy Jenkins has finally been Hall of Famed, along with Mountain Giant and Mind Control Tech.
The Year of the Dragon is over, and as the Year of the Phoenix begins, a few problematic cards have been exorcised from the Standard format. The developers offered some explanations on why these decisions were taken too.
Leeroy Jenkins, Mountain Giant, Mind Control Tech all removed from Hearthstone Standard Format
As is customary with Hearthstone’s rotations, some cards from the Classic and Basic sets are removed from play. Usually, they’re more problematic cards that restrict design space for future releases, but sometimes it happens when they’ve just been a part of the metagame for far too long in a one-note way.
Here’s why these cards were Hall of Famed.
Leeroy Jenkins is the quintessential Charge minion, dominating aggressive decks from his first appearance in the early days of Hearthstone. Now is the time for him to go. The Hearthstone team have been reluctant to print new Charge minions, preferring the restriction of Rush in recent expansions to keep design space as open as possible. Leeroy Jenkins was the last bastion of (actually useful) Charge minions, and getting rid of him will hopefully mean more interesting minion buffing interactions in the future of Hearthstone.
Handlock and other decks requiring large hand sizes are super interesting and fun to play. However, there’s more you can do with the archetype than just discounting a Mountain Giant. Unfortunately, the card is just too strong, so it ended up being the focal point of all hand-based decks. With Mountain Giant gone, we’ll hopefully get to see some unique interactions with regards to hand sizes, and some powerful replacements for the ubiquitous Mountain Giant.
Mind Control Tech
This card is so high-rolly. Your opponent plays a 4th minion onto the board, and you can just take one of them for 3 mana. If you’re aware Mind Control is a 10-mana spell in the Priest class, having this effect for just 3, despite the random element and condition to be fulfilled, isn’t particularly healthy. It never feels good to play against Mind Control Tech, so many players will be bidding it good riddance.
Acolyte of Pain
Acolyte of Pain is being Hall of Famed for a similar reason as Northshire Cleric. A source of almost infinite card draw, Acolyte of Pain is even scarier thanks to its availability to all classes, giving classes who shouldn’t really be drawing that many cards so easily. It’ll also open up design space for card draw options that would otherwise have been unprintable thanks to Acolyte’s power level.
Spellbreaker is an interesting one. It’s pretty much always been a better option than Ironbeak Owl, especially after the latter was nerfed to 3 mana. When we spoke to the dev team, they indicated they’d want to do something more interesting with the Silence effect in a similar manner to what Gluttonous Ooze did with weapon destruction. With Spellbreaker at a good stat level and easy to slot into many decks, it seemed difficult to make this happen. We’re intrigued then - how will the devs make Silencing enemy minions more compelling?
Priest cards rotating into the Hall of Fame
Six Priest cards are being put into the Hall of Fame too. Prophet Velen, Auchenai Soulpriest, Shadowform, Holy Fire, Divine Spirit, and Northshire Cleric are all being rotated. For more information on this, as well as the brand new cards replacing them in the Classic and Basic sets, check out our Priest changes page.
We’ll keep you nice and updated on all the new Hearthstone content coming up. Check out our rundown on the brand new Demon Hunter class being introduced, as well as the upcoming changes to the returning player experience of Hearthstone.