Hearthstone‘s new Scholomance Academy expansion is coming on August 6, with a theme that takes you to a magical school. In the lore, the Kirin Tor mage Kel’Thuzad is doing dark experiments in the basement. But some at Scholomance stood up to the mage, like the character behind GameSpot’s card reveal: Keymaster Alabaster.
Keymaster Alabaster is a late-game Neutral Legendary that can generate enormous amounts of value if your opponent can’t remove him. Simply giving you a copy of your opponent’s draws is already a big advantage by feeding you information about their hand, but it goes one step further by making your version of the card potentially cheaper. Simply playing Alabaster and passing to your opponent’s turn will get you at least one cheap card from their deck, and if they can’t remove it, you can make it two. If they have to dig for a solution to remove him, he’ll just keep generating value.
The Neutral designation means Alabaster could appear in any deck, but he’ll be especially potent in late-game Control decks that look to out-value your opponent, and ones that benefit from low-cost cards. That includes Rogue, which is always looking for more low-cost cards to act as triggers for its Combo effects. Drawing 1-cost spells can be especially effective for Priests and Mages, and synergizes well with the new Spellburst keyword.
Spellburst is one of the new mechanics in Scholomance Academy. It triggers a Battlecry-like effect upon the first use of a spell, so you can determine when is best to activate it. Scholomance will also introduce new Dual-Class Cards, and “Studies” spells that let you discover a card while reducing the future cost of its type.
Scholomance Academy is now available for pre-order as two bundles. A Pre-Purchase bundle ($50) gets you 55 packs, one random Golden Legendary, and a Kel’Thuzad card back. The Mega bundle ($80) gives you 80 packs, five Scholomance Golden packs, a random Gold Legendary, Kel’Thuzad Mage Hero and card back, and a Tavern Pass with four Arena tickets.
For more on Scholomance Academy, read our interview with game designers Chadd Nervig and Liv Breeden.
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