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Hearthstone's Saviors of Uldum Brings Back Controversial Mechanic

Hearthstone Saviors of Uldum

Blizzard announced today that the newest expansion for Hearthstone will be Saviors of Uldum, and the set will bring back a controversial mechanic in the form of Quests. Quests were previously seen in 2017's Journey to Un'Goro expansion, which coincidentally also featured a League of Explorers character in Elise Starseeker, neatly tying the newest expansion back to where it draws its inspirations from.

The Quest mechanic is one of the most divisive ever introduced to Hearthstone. Essentially, Quests are all one mana spells that begin the game in a player's hand and can thus be played immediately on their first turn. Quests track different game decisions - some require the player to put Taunt minions into play, for instance, while others ask that they buff minions with spells - and, once the player hits the required number, they are gifted a card that is obscenely powerful. In their first iteration, Quests produced two incredibly draining decks in the meta - Taunt Warrior, which slowed the game down to a crawl and felt inevitable once it hit a certain point, and Quest Mage, which set up a one-turn kill that featured looping Fireballs while the opponent could only hope that the Quest Mage player disconnected mid-combo. Quests also spawned Quest Rogue, a deck so oppressive and powerful it was nerfed twice and continued to remain a powerful force in the meta.

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Understandably, players are likely a little concerned about Saviors of Uldum, which will release on August 6 and introduce 135 new cards into Standard according to Play Hearthstone. The expansion will center around the League of Explorers and, alongside Quests, will add a new keyword in Reborn. Reborn lets minions who die return to the battlefield with 1 health. On top of that, five classes will be getting Plague cards, expensive spells that affect the entire board and provide players with powerful effects.

Hearthstone New Quests Saviors of Uldum

Blizzard is telling a continuous story with this year's three sets, so Saviors of Uldum will be the second part in a trilogy. Rise of Shadows introduced the League of E.V.I.L, which will be traveling to Uldum, and the League of Explorers will be forced to intervene and stop their nefarious plans. Uldum is based on ancient Egypt, and historically was the site of an ancient weapon in World of Warcraft that could wipe out all life from Azeroth, so it seems a likely draw for the League of E.V.I.L.

Storyline aside, however, the introduction of Quests will need to be delicately balanced. The mechanic has produced some extremely problematic metas in the past, and there are already examples of why the mechanic is likely too powerful for some Standard formats. While Blizzard likely knows this, recent balancing decisions don't indicate a strong sense of direction for the game, which could ultimately mean players are in for another Quest-heavy meta come August 6 when Saviors of Uldum becomes available in Hearthstone.

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Source: Play Hearthstone

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