Hearthstone has revealed that Quilboars are finally making their way to Battlegrounds once patch 20.2 arrives next week. The update features 17 new minions, 3 new heroes, and the Blood Gems mechanic, all themed around the Forged in the Barrens expansion.
The new Blood Gems mechanic is a 0-mana spell that allows you to buff a minion with +1/+1 to its stats, and they appear to only generate from playing certain Quilboar tribe cards like Razorfen Geomancer. Other Quilboars will benefit from Blood Gems through different effects, such as the Dynamic Duo, and at first glance, it appears that you will get the most benefit from the tribe by going all in, rather than trying to mix and match with other minion types.
Once the patch goes live, you can expect to see Quiboars everywhere as one of the five minion tribes available in Battlegrounds. Unlike the previous expansion, it seems that Hearthstone is aiming to make the overall theme something that you deliberately choose to build upon, as opposed to a passive benefit that everyone attains throughout a match.
This is a complete departure from the addition of Darkmoon Prizes, which gave players a powerful bonus every four turns. At first, discovering a powerful buff was exciting, but soon that excitement wore off and the mechanic simply became another part of the normal game. Worse still was that sometimes it felt that your options were mediocre at best, while other players received massive early-game spikes in power.
In contrast, the Blood Gem mechanic already feels like it will be far more balanced. Even if a player takes a few Quilboar that generate Blood Gems, the +1/+1 stat buff will only be incrementally useful in the early game, but largely useless in the endgame if they have gone with another tribe that focuses on its own strategies.
The big question once the patch goes live will be when to invest in the new tribe. Blizzard has confirmed that once the patch is released, Quilboar will be available in every Battlegrounds game until the launch of the next major content patch, which presumably means the next Standard expansion. This means that competition will be fierce for the best Quilboar cards, while other tribes will be ripe for the picking. If you are careful in observing what your opponents are picking up, which you should be doing anyway, you will have a far better idea of who might be stretching themselves thin to use the new tribe.
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The Fantastic, Science-Fiction, and Horror are Patricio’s go-to genres for literature, film, and gaming. Dead by Daylight is his daily bread and butter as he writes for TheGamer. He teaches Spanish at McGill by day and writes next to his Staffy x Boxer rescue from the SPCA by night.
Patricio graduated from the University of Alberta in 2006, 2012, and will have one more degree in hand by 2020. Innovation in game development, the economics of making games profitable, and the downward, decadent spiral of former great gaming companies fuels his soul to write daily. Will Blizzard Entertainment do something controversial often enough to keep this reference relevant? Patrick certainly believes they will.
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