Hey guys, last wing of the League of Explorers is arriving soon, and Blizzard surely loves to save the hype cards in the final wing of most adventures.
The highlight card of this final wing is probably elise-starseeker the card that really built hype for the adventure, with map-to-the-golden-monkey that grants you golden-monkey that changes the rest of your deck into legendaries.
So this week’s meta would be more amounts of people trying to achieved the golden-monkey dream by trying to experiments decks for that best fits for her .
This wing’s card are very interesting and most of them have various concepts and thoughts, so it’s going a little bit longer than the usual usual reviews. Hope you enjoy it!
So, in this wing you have to deal with a total of 4 Bosses as the following:
First Boss: Skelesaurus Hex
Defeating this Boned-T-Rex grants you with fossilized-devilsaur , raven-idol and the Rogue class challenge that gives you tomb-pillager via completion
- A Big bad ass skeleton dinosaur, but will see no play in constructed because at this mana cost there are legendary cards that will easily compete with this card. (force-tank-max , north-sea-kraken are nice examples too) The card isn’t bad, but at the same cost you could get better cards that could much more than a 8/8 and maybe Taunt. (tirion-fordring , ragnaros-the-firelord , grommash-hellscream and the list goes on)
Maybe viable in: None
- More viable in arena, a nice competitor with force-tank-max. Druids and Hunters get an extra edge on the possibility of having extra beasts to get its Battlecry. (Other classes would depend on how many beasts you can get) We could say that ironbark-protector just got available for everybody lol.
- Blizzard surely release all the best cards in the last adventure wing. This card is quite similar to dark-peddler and adds more spice to Druid class. The big issue of this card might be that Druids might fight it difficult find space in their deck to add this card in. Considering the class card have a higher chance to appear in the Discover ability, and most Druids spells are trash (dark-whisperers , savagery , healing-touch , tree-of-life you name it) so chances that you’ll get a good spell is low. I’ve done a little math for ya’all and Druid has a total 26 spells, 3 of them are wrath , swipe , starfall so pretty low chance to get a good spell (around 11.5%).
- Now let’s talk about the minion Discover for this card, ‘Discover: a minion’ the pool of cards that can be picked is very, very huge and could even include neutral legendaries (yes, LEGENDARIES) however, class cards have more chances of appearing as always (unless Blizzard decides to nerf this in the future) so it’s pretty like an unstable-portal with no cost reduction and has highly chance of Druid minions to appear.
- So, it comes to how good is unstable-portal that doesn’t get cost reduction (Druid’s version) is in contructed. The answer is mixed to no, it can be decent or not very good sometimes, as the overpowerness of unstable-portal comes from it’s cost reduction which raven-idol does not possess, however, it can give choices for you to curve out perfectly with a good hand and ramp power, I’ll let you decide on this one. But as I mentioned earlier, what would you cut to put this in?
Maybe viable in: Midrange Druid, Aggro Druid
- Similar points as shown in constructed opinion if you are expecting a good spell from this card, the odds are low (11.5%) for the minions Discover, it could help you curve out in the early game or get a big threat late game. So, it’s nice to consider this card as a card draw mechanic, nevertheless consider other solid options during the draft with this card.
Second Boss: The Steel Sentinel
Beating the Steel Sentinel rewards you with cursed-blade and museum-curator and also unlocks you the Mage class challenge which grants you animated-armor via completion.
- Damn cursed indeed, but in an aggro meta? I don’t think it’s gonna be a good idea. But it really fixes the problem of having to coin out your fiery-war-axe to deal with small stuff and uses this blade instead, saving the coin for later but backside is you take extra damage. Thinking about how it could replace fiery-war-axe and I don’t think it would good, as long as you hold it, you take extra damage until you use it all up, or equip a new weapon. You equip it late in the most games, then you are very vulnerable for burst spells, fireballs become pyroblast , even kill-command is a pyroblast. So for control/midrange fiery-war-axe is damn better.
- Some how makes blingtron-3000 lovers more weapons to play with, giving the blade to a non-weapon class means they will take double damage for most likely 2-3 turns but only if your opponent is that unlucky.
- So by all means, this card has more possibilities of killing you more than killing your opponent.
Maybe viable in: Face Warrior
- Might be considered, most Warrior arena runs might lack weapons adding another Weapon into the rare rarity is good. However, be cautions with the weapon, as swinging it around too much might make you take too much damage and vulnerable for burst spells. I would consider the card if I do not have enough early drops or is lacking a weapon.
- Pretty interesting at first look, however, I think he’s pretty difficult to find a spot to include in Priest, most likely he will give you a dark-cultist and a rare chance to get other good Deathrattle cards, but since Deathrattle cards are so good, he might see some play in Priest.
Maybe viable in: Every midrange and control deck would probably give this guy a tryout.
- Even better in arena than constructed, as it gets you a strong Deathrattle card, however, its bad stats as a 2-drop might hurt you a bit as it’s a tempo loss card. But potentially getting one of the best cards in the game/class is still worth picking. I rate this card high as Deathrattle cards are very difficult to deal with but you might consider you’re whole draft before picking him.
Third Boss: Arch-Thief Rafaam
Defeating Rafaam grants you curse-of-rafaam and wobbling-runts
Curse of Rafaam
- A new card concept for Warlock. Maybe viable for extra aggro decks, but it really is just a 2 damage to the face for 2 mana and helps mess up your opponent’s curve a bit. The problem is possibly, WHEN to cast it. Aggro decks are very tempo oriented, and losing early tempo isn’t good, your opponent might just ignore the damage and start to establish board with minions then you’re behind and you’re screwed. You play it late game, he just casts it back. So I find it very difficult for this card to fit in any current archetype for Warlock.
Maybe viable in: None
- Face damage is the least thing you would want to worry about unless you are Hunter, or have a super hyper aggressive arena draft then this card might be that damage you’re missing. dark-bomb seems like a more similar card that almost does the same thing. So I would say pass to this card, it’s just not even worth trying in arena.
- Very interesting card, you get a total of 8/12 worth of stats but those Runts are weak to board clears. But this card has very low attack power as a 6-drop, its 2 attack power really does nothing (it can’t even deal with a piloted-shredder alone). Could be viable in token and Druid decks as they can benefit from buffing those Runts and Druids can do Druid stuff (force-of-nature+ savage-roar. But I think overall this card is too weak as a 6-drop. Other competitors on the same mana are sylvanas-windrunner , emperor-thaurissan and even piloted-sky-golem looks all better because they all hit harder and puts more pressure.
Maybe viable in: Midrange Druid, Token Shaman, Midrange Shaman
- Not so good in arena too, even it is very tough to deal with but that’s all it has, very sticky but not threatening. Could be easily compared with boulderfist-ogre as it is considered the best vanilla 6-drop in arena and boulderfist-ogre just looks better because it is more threatening. Then it comes down to Druids and Shaman with their burst spells of savage-roar and bloodlust so they can get value from the runts. Other class shouldn’t even consider picking it, because it is a very weak 6-drop.
Final Boss: Rafaam Unleashed
Second form of Rafaam, by defeating him will reward you with desert-camel , eerie-statue and it completes the adventure and you’ll get elise-starseeker and arch-thief-rafaam to start your golden-monkey hunting time.
- So we have all gave this card some tryouts during Hunter’s class challenge. Trades very well with 2-drops but I don’t really think you want the Battlecry to trigger that desperately. As when playing against most decks (AGGRO decks) you would be giving them a free minion, sure you get one too but they get to attack with it first. The best 1-drop in game currently goes to zombie-chow and the best 1-drop for Hunter is either leper-gnome or webspinner and most of the time you’ll just be giving free stuff for people. (mana-wyrm , tunnel-trogg , zombie-chow , more leper-gnomes and the list goes on) Most Hunters decks already have a fixed 3-mana play such as animal-companion and eaglehorn-bow or even argent-horserider so it’s pretty difficult for this poor camel to compete with huffer or even misha as he can be only a leokk that also gives you opponent a 1-drop to play, how bad is that?
- Control Hunter? Could make this card more sensible to play. As it can trade away most 2-drops and give you a zombie-chow (considering you’ll be playing a full control Hunter) but control Hunter is a very different story and finding a deck for Control Hunter to work hasn’t been discovered yet. So this card is probably not going to see play.
Maybe viable in: Control Hunter
- A decent card, and if you have a 1-drop to make this card even better. Worst case scenario is you don’t have a 1-drop and you opponent does. Best case is you have lots of 1-drops and your opponent does not and you’re gonna be in a very strong spot. However, consider your other choices before picking, but 2/4 stats for 3 mana is nice.
- Another very interesting card, could be added to the ancient-watcher type of cards/decks with wailing-soul. Handlocks might be considering to run this card as they have several taunt givers, and this card goes with shadowflame perfectly. Another opinion I’ve heard is that this card may go ridiculously good in Oil Rogue just because it is so big to deal with and your opponents will ignore it, opening for a tinkers-sharpsword-oil turn with blade-flurry and allowing this guy to attack after you’ve emptied their board. Oh, and this card is in big-game-hunter range but nobody would shoot it down unless it is silenced.
Maybe viable in: Handlock, Oil Rogue, Wailing Soul Deck
- Similar attributes as ancient-watcher , it requires an activator and in arena cards that require activation aren’t as powerful as ones that do not. By conclusion it is just a very bad card in arena and not worth picking, as all your opponent need to do to counter it is just play minions. Mage might see this card worthy as it can be played followed by a boardclear like flamestrike the following turn. But that is the best case scenario for it. Most of the time it will be doing nothing.
- Finally, the card that was the highlight of the adventure expansion during the first official statement made in Blizzcon. I would say this card is very unique and has to build a deck around it to make it work, similar to reno-jackson so it would be very difficult to evaluate it. Well, first things first, if you do not know what map-to-the-golden-monkey does it shuffles the minion golden-monkey when you use it, and when golden-monkey hits the board, chaos happens.
- So a deck that can play this combo must have very strong defensive mechanisms, and in order for golden-monkey’s Battlecry to get crazy value the deck must have a possible method of either cycling very fast or contain search combos to make it work, as you need some board control before you can play golden-monkey or you will die before you can even draw a single legendary that was replaced in your deck. So considering how difficult to make golden-monkey to pay off from Elise and win the game requires a very special deck that allows it to work, the current Renolock (Warlock that has reno-jackson and most 1-copy of everything) seems to be a nice place to start, as it has high draw power, and versatile card choices, but even if it works, how much can you rely on the legendaries that are replaced in your deck? Yes, legendaries are strong cards on their own and very few are weak, but you need 2-3 of the best legendaries to carry you to victory (ragnaros-the-firelord, ysera , archmage-antonidas and vice versa) from a pool of almost 100 legendary cards.
- Needs some play testing but we will all have fun trying to making it work. I won’t say that the search for the golden-monkey wouldn’t be worth it but I would say it’s worth the fun to make it work!
Maybe viable in: The Golden Monkey Explorer Team Deck (Soon to be discovered)
- Possibly one of the best cards in arena as long as you manage it get golden-monkey before your run out of cards. Elise is a decent 4-drop minion and would/should be played as soon as possible to increase the odds of getting the map then golden-monkey. I would certainly pick this card in arena, and the only exception is a solid class legendary or a more consistent one.
Arch Thief Rafaam
- Before we can evaluate this card, let’s check out all the ‘Powerful’ artifacts this card provides us to choose:
- lantern-of-power buffs a minion into a god. Could act as a pyroblast if you manage to have a minion stick on board.
- mirror-of-doom summon 3/3 mummies until your board is full. This is maybe the most difficult artifact for your opponent to deal with, as they need exactly an area-of-effect card that can clear all the mummies or they would face a possible 21 damage from the hordes of mummies. However, this artifact is very slow, as you need to waste another turn after playing Rafaam to set the mummy armies up, and then the next turn you can attack with them.
- timepiece-of-horror this artifact might be considered the worst, but depends on the situation of the game, they must be low on health and does not possess a huge board (less than 10 health would be preferred) so that the artifact has a potential chance of getting lethal for you.
- All of the artifacts cost 10 mana, and must be selected carefully, as you must be able to evaluate the best card for the current board situation.
- For example: Getting lantern-of-power when you have a huge board to force your opponent to clear.
- In the current meta, there are onl y 2 decks that could potentially run Rafaam, those decks are Control Warrior and Renowarlock.
- As a conclusion, Rafaam is very slow compared to other 9-mana minions/legendaries so there is quite no reason to run him over ysera or even lord-jarraxxus. Maybe if there was more powerful artifacts for Rafaam, he might be more considerable to play over other legendaries, but as for now, no play in constructed.
Maybe viable in: None
- Rafaam’s tale in arena is very different from constructed. The artifacts can be very devastating for your opponents, as they require exactly specific cards to deal with the artifacts that Rafaam can grant you and answers or cards to the artifacts are very rare to possess or have. (Mage can possibly possess most of the cards to counter Rafaam’s artifacts polymorph for the Lantern, and flamestrike for the mirror-of-doom) So they selection of the artifacts must be precise and depends on how you read your opponent’s hand.
- Rafaam is a decent legendary card, but I would still consider my other choices, the class legendary is almost a pick on most classes (tirion-fordring , archmge-antonidas , mal-ganis) even cards like sylvanas-windrunner or cairne-bloodhoof could be considered better because they can be played before turn 9. Rafaam even trades or dies easily to north-sea-kraken a 9-drop minion that appears commonly in arena so he’s stats are pretty bad for a 9-drop compared to other late game drops. So he’s power really relies on the artifact you pick, and if your opponent cannot counter it, Rafaam might just win you the game.
Mage: Animated Armor
- Unique card design, with similar attributes to bolf-ramshield a minion that acts like a shield for the player. In constructed, this card maybe viable in only Fatigue Mage because the power of this card almost negates fatigue damage. Freeze Mage could give it a try, but he would die to the board via minion trading most of the time (4/4 Taunt)
Maybe viable in: Fatigue Mage
- Unlike constructed, this card would probably be a 4/4 pseudo Taunt. 4/4 for mana is below average (blue-wind-yeti) and this card is a rare pick so you would consider your other choices before picking him.
Rogue: Tomb Pillager
- Vanilla 5/4, gives you a free coin after it dies. I love how Blizzard tries to give the coin to Rogue by using minions (cutpurse) but in constructed they would want it in their hand by starting second every game!. The current archetypes that are the most powerful for Rogue is now Oil Rogue and the brand new Raptor Rogue. (Deathrattle Rogue) So this card could maybe fit in Raptor Rogue as it has a Deathrattle ability. However, just getting a coin from it seems unworthy for it to exist in a deck that relies on sticky minions and strong Deathrattles (piloted-shredder , nerubian-egg)
- As a conclusion, this card may not see play in constructed.
Maybe viable in: Raptor Rogue
- Totally different opinion about it in arena, as Rogues are quite desperate for combo initiators (even their current power in arena is very strong already) and getting an extra coin to throw out big minions ahead of curve is very devastating for your opponent. (shado-pan-cavalry) However, this card stats are quite below average, but could be a decent 4-drop, as sometimes you do not have too many better picks than this.
Winner of the week
I know you all know what card is going to be pick here, no surprises here.
This card is so good, the artifacts are so strong. WAIT, WTF anothersy, WHY RAFAAM AND WHY NO ELISE? NO, I’m just joking with you guys. Here’s the real winner 😀
Absolute winner with no doubt, nobody wouldn’t give her a try (except Face decks experts) The Golden Monkey challenge is sounds too fun for people to not try it, we’ll probably have fun racing on who gets the golden-monkey first in the mirror match or we’ll be the hunters who will deny the explorers attempt to get the golden-monkey dream.
Honorable Mentions: museum-curator , raven-idol
Class Selection Opinions
Probably the hardest deck to theory craft. I had to spent several hours thinking of what deck she can be included in. In Control Warlock, we already have lord-jaraxxus as a super late game oriented minion, and even the Warlock’s class hero power goes so well on how we can speed up our draws to get the golden-monkey faster. The consistent power of lord-jaraxxus seems better and easier to use than golden-monkey. The deck that may be the best possible to run her should be a deck that can easily take the game into fatigue stage, and that deck is Control Warrior.
Basically, a Fatigue Warrior deck, but we add elise-starseeker as a finisher. The deck itself can handle heavy amounts of bombardment, as we can armor-up to gain life and with all the weapons and removals we can handle board control easily. It may seem you can win the game even before elise-starseeker even hits the board just because your opponent just runs out of has to kill you, but I feel as this is the best deck for elise-starseeker to fit in and get her value. Ways to improve the deck is you might add more card draws and more midgame minions, which isn’t a big deal as long as you can draw golden-monkey fast and you can change everything into legendaries, have fun getting that golden-monkey!!
Thanks for reading my review up until the final wing to League of Explorers. I have to apologize for the length of thing week’s wing review, as there are so many interesting cards, and I couldn’t cut the amount my thoughts on them. Anyway, hope you all enjoy my entire review of the League of Explorers, have fun play testing and completing achievements of searching for the golden monkey. Feel free to ask about the cards, or even share your decks of Elise in the comments below. I love to read and I answer every comment. See you guys real soon on my next article.