Hearthstone's latest Maw and Disorder Mini-Set hasn't been out very long, but we've seen enough of what it's brought to the stand that we feel confident enough to once again declare some early winners and losers for the Standard Hearthstone meta. These are the classes, archetypes, cards, and concepts that are doing the best or the worst thanks to Maw and Disorder, and we start with an obvious winner:
No one knows better than us the power of a good pun, and Maw and Disorder is chock full of juicy wordplay. From Class Action Lawyer to All Fel Breaks Loose, there's a pun for every occasion (and if you need help understanding some of the puns, we've got you covered) - so much so that we've decided on the spur of the moment to break into an emergency mini-article ranking our five favorite puns from this Mini-Set:
Digression: The Five Best Puns From Maw and Disorder
"Totally objective" disclaimer and all that:
#5 - Attorney-at-Maw vs Mawsworn Bailiff
Since both of these cards are playing with the "law"/"maw" twist, we can't really put one over the other - although if we had to, it would be Attorney-at-Maw.
#4 - Class Action Lawyer
If the creation of Pure Paladin as an archetype was only so we could eventually have a "Class Action" pun, then it was totally worth it.
#3 - Order in the Court
Paladin cleaned up in the pun department, with another playful twist on a familiar phrase from the judicial system - this time, the "Order" in the court is your deck, because it's, you know, from highest to lowest instead of being random - so it's, like, in order.
#2 - Dew Process
We're just glad that Blizzard has finally given its players the right to Dew Process, even if their employees [JOKE CENSORED BY ACTIVISION].
#1 - Habeas Corpses
Puns in English are great and all, but when you can get the most popular dead language involved, you've got yourself a winner that can't be topped.
So where were we... ah, yes. Now back to our regularly scheduled programming. Take it away, Winners and Losers:
Winner: Big Beast Hunter
Big Beast Hunter was a very good deck before Maw and Disorder, but the new set looks like it increased the archetype's dominance at every level. HSReplay shows the deck sporting a 58% winrate, but that's not the only sign of its power level: the deck also has a 16.48% share of the meta, which is nearly twice as much as the number two deck (Ramp Druid) and over three times as popular as number three (Implock). So if you've been wondering what might be the next potential nerf candidate...
Why is Beast Hunter doing so well? Mainly because the deck could keep playing the same refined list while every other class experimented with the new cards. However, the cards it has added from the new set - Sylvanas, the Accused and Defense Attorney Nathanos - are perfect tech cards for its worst matchup, Naga/Bless Priest. The best deck not only wasn't pushed out by more powerful new decks, it also found the right pieces to answer its weaknesses.
Theotar, the Mad Duke has had himself a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad week. First, he didn't work with Hero cards. Then, he didn't work with Choose One cards. On top of all that, his bugginess was so rampant that it actually affected his parasol in Battlegrounds. Several hotfixes later, the problems appear to have been solved - but too late for our faith in The Mad Duke to be fully restored.
We'll still play him, of course.
Winner: Ramp Druid
Ramp Druid was hit fairly hard the last time nerfs were meted and doled unto our savage race - they took Guff's free Mana, as well as Ramp Druid's favorite "tech" card, Smothering Starfish. Well, weep no more because, if Silence is what you need, Attorney-at-Maw can be that guy for you. The 2-Drop slots right in as a neat removal tool for slow Druid decks, doing great things in matchups where Silence is a must-have.
Dew Process has also been seeing play, but it's mainly been noteworthy thanks to its bugged relationship with Hero cards.
Loser: Relic Demon Hunter
What happened, you guys? Relic Demon Hunter was doing so well: it was one of the most popular decks heading into the Mini-Set, but afterwards it just... evaporated. The main reason is that Beast Hunter, a very bad matchup for Illidan, got even more popular post-Maw, so it's possible this has a silver lining when the inevitable nerfs come down on Hunter. While it's possible that those nerfs will bring Relics back to the top of the meta, we can't help but wonder if the archetype's time has passed for good.
DING DING DING WHOOP WHOOP WHOOP WHOOP BWAMP BWAMP BWAMP
You what that sound means: it's time for another emergency mini-article! This time we're breaking down the five legal puns we wish had been part of Maw and Disorder.
Digression: Five Puns That Should Have Been Maw and Disorder Cards
What could've been, yet isn't. Just imagine that custom artwork:
#5 - Revenant Domain
A great combination of legal terminology (eminent domain), the Shadowlands, and puns - a lawyer's second favorite type of joke.*
*Lawyers' favorite jokes are their fees. ZING!
#4 - So Help You, Yogg
This was a perfect opportunity to give the Hearthstone twist to the swearing-in of witnesses, and also a great time to bring another fully random effect to the game.
#3 - Bear Arms
Very obviously should have been a Hunter weapon. Come on guys, Eternal did it, and they didn't even have a legal-themed set!
#2 - Writ of Certiorari
Or some sort of pun in that manner. We'll be honest, we couldn't think of one - but if we had, it would have been hilarious.
#1 - Jury of Her Fears
If we're in the Maw, we might as well take the obvious play on "jury of her peers."
Have your own puns you wish were part of the Mini-Set? Make sure to share your best and worst takes with us in the comments below!
And onwards, we continue:
While the results of her court case remain to be seen, in-game Sylvanas, the Accused is one of the biggest winners of the mini-set. If you're uncertain as to why, just take a gander at any grouping of popular decklists and you'll see that most (if not all) of them are running the defendant - HSReplay says she's in 22.9% of all decks. For six mana, she's a powerful removal play that can easily* be Infused into a board-swinging tempo turnaround.
Rogue hasn't been doing so well since the "surprise" buff revert of Edwin, Defias Kingpin. The class just can't figure out anything powerful to do, and the cards it got from the mini-set didn't help it any. Scribbling Stenographer should be good in Edwin Rogue, but in practice screws with the deck's ability to draw Edwin. And the less said about Secret Rogue, the better.
Winners: Creepy-Crawlies (Rats, Bats, Spiders, and Imps)
October is usually a great month for creepy-crawlies (the scientific term for these creatures), but this mini-set made it even better. Rats and Bats got their own deck archetype in Hunter, feeding Shadehound with Rats of Extraordinary Size (and you thought they didn't exist), while spiders got in on this action thanks to the synergy of Imported Tarantula and Defense Attorney Nathanos.
And, Imps. Imps are very popular in Warlock right now, and Implock is one of the most popular decks in all of Standard. It's finally time for Hearthstone's creepy-crawlies to truly shine.
Loser: Shaman's New Toys
Shaman has shown no interest in even trying out Totemic Evidence, Framester, or Torghast Custodian. Thrall has decided he's perfectly happy jamming the exact same Moist Shaman list that's been his go-to since the nerf to Snowfall Guardian. When we pressed him to try something new, he half-heartedly tossed in Sylvanas, the Accused and went back to ignoring us.
Winner: The Teddy Club
As of this posting, there are eight 10 Mana 10/10 minions in Hearthstone. Period. Murder at Castle Nathria and Maw and Disorder single-handedly increased the ranks of Y'Shaarj by 33% with Sire Denathrius and The Jailer. The Teddy club is an exclusive one: if you count Nathria/Maw as one set, 75% of its members were contributed by just three sets - a pair from WotOG, a pair from Uldum, and a pair from Nathria/Maw. We don't know why Teddys come in twos, they just do.
As anyone who's been put on trial for the suspected arson of a banana stand can tell you, in a court of Law the burden of proof rests with the Prosecution. If they can't procure enough evidence or charred bananas to prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, you're a free to go and set fire to more fruit vendors.
So it comes as less of a surprise that our three Accusations (Theft Accusation, Arson Accusation, and Murder Accusation) have failed to hold muster in the court of the Standard Hearthstone meta and are being dismissed by the Grand Jury of Hearthstone players, over the protestations of the Defense Attorney Youtubers (did that metaphor get away from us?). Accusations are hard to prove in a legal sense, and even more difficult to play in a Legend deck.
Do you agree with our conclusions? Do you have your own winners and losers that we failed to mention? Prosecute or exonerate in the comments below!