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Take a closer look at 6 new cards from Hearthstone's Whispers of the Old Gods expansion

Something wicked this way comes
Product: Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft | Developer: Blizzard Entertainment | Publisher: Blizzard Entertainment | Format: Android, iPhone, iPad | Genre: Card battler, RPG, Strategy
Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft Android, thumbnail 1
We've already talked a little about Hearthstone's new expansion, Whispers of the Old Gods, which lead designer Ben Brode has described as "the darkest thing that Hearthstone will ever do."

There's no denying it's all doom and gloom, but some of us still need to play the bloody thing, so let's talk about the cards we were shown on the press trip to Blizzard's Headquarters in Irvine California.

We saw just a handful of the 134 new cards. Six, in fact - the same cards revealed by Blizzard during the recent live-stream (that hasn't happened when this was filed, so give us a break if they show off more/less).

Firstly is C'thun. C'thun is a terrifying monster and one of the four old gods that make up the central thrust of the new expansion.

C'Thun isn't a card you slot into your deck, but a focal point for you to build a deck around - he costs 10 mana and requires upkeep from several of his servants. You can't just play him as an afterthought, he's got to be a key part of your strategy.

He can be altered by several different cultists, and this is key, because playing him as a 10 mana card for 6 attack and defence is a waste. You'll need to build his strength before playing him so that he can devastate the opposition.

You'll want to boost him first, too - his battlecry is a series of missiles equal to his damage - if you play him at 6 damage he'll fire out 6 missiles, which is scary enough. If you play him as a 12/12 card? He'll fire out 12 missiles, smashing the opponent's game board.

That brings us to some of his friends. Meet the Beckoner of Evil, a 2 mana 2/3 card that will give your C'thun a +2 boost to attack and defence (+2/2) no matter where he is - on the board, in your hand or even still in your deck.

Not your scene? Why not the Twilight Elder? It's a 3 mana 3/4 card that'll give your C'thun +1/+1 at the end of each turn.

Between the two you can easily boost your C'thun to completely silly levels, but this will require proper use of the cards to get him as strong as possible.

There are three other Old Gods that will require your attention and theory crafting when the expansion launches in late-April/early May, but the team aren't talking about them yet.

It's not all about the old gods though. Their rustling through the night has infiltrated the Hearthstone-verse and corrupted the world around it.

In the case of the Corrupted Healbot, it becomes a perverse "bizarro" version of itself, a 5 mana card offering a tasty 6/6 but with the downside of healing the enemy hero for 8 damage as his deathrattle.

In the decks we played, Healbot seemed totally useless, but how he could fit into the meta on launch remains to be seen.

The Polluted Hoarder seemed to offer a lot more utility. A 4 mana 4/2 that lets you draw a card as a deathrattle, he could offer some punchy draw potential for those decks in need.

With all of this doom and gloom running around. you can see why folks might be a little down in the dumps. Not the Doomsayer though, after running around proclaiming that the end was nigh, he's ecstatic to be proven right.

He's now a Validated Doomsayer, a 5 mana 0/7 card that goes up to 7 attack at the start of each turn.

The card seemed powerful during our playtests but a lot of the pros at the event said that they probably wouldn't ever use the Validated Doomsayer in play. Again, we'll have to see what effect it has once it's in rotation.

It'll certainly be interesting to see where these new cards, and the rest that Blizzard intends to introduce, take the game.

They're certainly offering something new, but whether or not this new update will do enough to shake players out of their current decks remains to be seen.

What do you make of the new cards? Let us know in the comments below.

Reviewer photo
Jake Tucker 11 March 2016
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