Hello readers. Welcome back to another Fan Community Spotlight. Today, I'll be revisiting a multi-article project I've done on this series, that being Neoguli's Core Set reworks. I made the first part three months ago covering Warlock and Druid, and I'll finally be finishing it in this part with the Neutrals. Few people attempt to remake a single Core Set for one class, and even fewer people attempt to do it for Neutrals. Even fewer than that are the people who do the entire Basic and Classic set for all classes and the Neutrals. I've got Neoguli here once again to talk about the Neutral set rework for the final installment of that 6-part series. As an added bonus, he's also made some deck recipes for each class featuring some of the cards that have been tweaked or added.
What cards did you cut and why?
Neoguli: "Most of the cards that were HoF’d were mostly obsolete and powercrept for so long, especially Basic Set cards. Some may have stuck around, but I had replacements which better aligned with my vision of expanding the deck diversity - say for example Cloud Drake replacing Oasis Snapjaw, because I wanted some Dragons. Some could be still in there, but I lacked room, and I prefered to stay to the same number of cards that is in the game’s current Core Set - unless you’re talking about five more Basic cards.
I’ve actually removed quite a few Charge cards. The keyword hasn’t been removed, but it has been more limited to lower-Attack minions. Higher-Attack minions with Charge are better when being class-specific.
I can delve a bit into cards like Pint-Sized Summoner and Alarm-o-Bot, because they exemplify my philosophy I leaned towards, which was removing most of card cheating mechanics. Cards like these are always dangerous in the grand scheme of things, because they can change the power timings of certain cards."
Of note is the VERY high amount of rotated cards from other sets. Did these just happen to work with what you wanted to do?
Interviewer's note: Some of the Common cards have been rotated to the Basic set in this rework, but have not been edited to remove the rarity gem and watermark. These cards show up in the Basic set section of the rework thread.
Neoguli: "Yes, they tend to fill the gaps I wanted to fill. Besides, it can feel pointless to create entirely new cards if there is already a serviceable replacement in the actual game. Saves me time and energy, and also gives those existing cards a second chance."
One other thing of note is that a lot of bad cards were buffed. Did this happen to work better than just outright replacing them?
Neoguli: "A lot of cards can be really good, but they get held back by mostly stats. Creating new cards to HoF those bad cards also creates a dilemma, because they will be still trash after being rotated, and those new toys may cause harm. It’s safer to renovate what you have."
Let's talk about the cards you made yourself for the Neutrals.
Neoguli: "Cloud Drake is a simple vanilla minion, and so is Arcane Researcher as a French Vanilla. But Southsea Brigadier gives the set a solid minion for weapon classes. It’s probably solid enough to be included in Odd Rogue, which says something about its power.
Floating Eyebat gives another Demon to the set, and also fills the void of good early game minions left by rotating some cards that served the purpose. It also rewards proper positioning and is not as threatening enough when alone.
Thunder Bluff Herald is another simple card, but it has an interesting dynamic of being a solid defensive body while also helping you cycle through the deck. I imagine some combo decks would like this card for said reasons. Speaking of combo decks, Mogu Cultist used to be in the set, but got ultimately replaced.
Sky Daredevil allows Control decks to have a great removal tool for the early game and enables Faceless Lackey to give you a shot at establishing board control.
Desert Ambusher functions similarly to Swamp King Dred, but instead of having an oversized body, it has vanilla stats and Stealth. If you have a small minion to sacrifice, it becomes much more vulnerable. However, play a spell-reliant deck against this shark and you’ll be guaranteed four damage to your face.
Thalyssra allows Secret decks to gain some value generation, as otherwise those cards would feel redundant the later the game goes on. I was thinking if she could use a change in stats and Cost, but she’s probably in a fine spot. Maybe a change to 4 Mana 3/3 will open up Mage to use the card better.
Nozdormu has now become your card to combat Control decks. Dare they use mass removal like Twisting Nether against Nozdormu, for you can now laugh at your opponent with Hourglass! But at the same time, it’s definitely a win-more card, because if used when behind, summoning a 10 Mana 8/8 isn’t that exciting."
What identity were you going for with the Neutral set?
Neoguli: "I’d say there isn’t much of an identity for the Neutral set, as its main purpose is to allow classes to cover some of their weaknesses and to provide tech cards. But one thing is for certain - it’s got a lot more stuff to work with, ranging from Fatigue queen Conjured Mirage to value generator Gazlowe to my part-time lover Da Undatakah (so is Vectus and N’Zoth, the CorruptorBADCARDNAME, but Da Undatakah is the safest one of ToDSL - Trinity of Deathrattle Synergy Legendaries, and with the Deathrattle cards I included, it turned out to provide pretty fair AoE for some classes)."
And so, we have reached the end. Over 6 installments, we have now covered a complete reworking of the Core Sets of all 10 classes and the Neutral set as well. Check out Neoguli's reworked Neutral set and let us know what you think. Since we don't want this work to be in vein, and they all go together, be sure to also check out the reworked class sets for all 10 classes.
If you want to see some deck-lists that utilize these new cards, Neoguli has provided one for each class although you will need to go into the decklist itself and imagine that the cut cards have been replaced (and thankfully, the decklists all do that for you).