4 Attack "Sweet Spot".

Posts: 174
There are many issue with the Priest class, most people simply call them “OP” but I feel that those people haven't actually played a Priest. Perhaps I'm wrong in this regard, but here's my take on what I think the biggest flaws of the Priest class are. (I'd talk about their strengths, but this post is long enough without it)

Quick Edit: A poster by the alias of "JunCurium" has posted an interesting idea regarding what this post is all about and I suggest that everyone reading this post checks it out after/before reading this, thanks! (Post #17 on the first page) Also. Here's a link to a thread that is also regarding this topic, enjoy!

http://us.battle.net/hearthstone/en/forum/topic/10716571935

Lets begin with other class abilities:

Druid – Naturalize. (1 Mana) Though this ability awards your opponent 2 cards for using it, in a clutch moment it could possibly save your hide and because of it's insanely low cost, I'd say that, in certain situations, it's worth it as it, indiscriminately, destroys any targetable minion you need destroyed.

Hunter – Deadly Shot. (3 Mana) The randomness of this ability hurts it quite a bit, but considering it's cost, it might actually be worth the hassle as it also destroys any minion. In some cases, the randomness of it can actually be a blessing. Say your opponent has only 1 minion (a stealthed minion), this ability bypasses that stealth.

Mage – Polymorph. (4 Mana) Though it's a tad expensive, it indiscriminately pacifies any minion that you need it to, as long as said minion is targetable. And it's honestly quite demoralizing when your big, threatening minion is turned into a cute/fluffy, white sheep...

Paladin – N/A. Though Paladins don't have any HR (Hard Removal) abilities, they do have a few tricks up their sleeves. Humility, Aldor's Peacekeeper and an interesting combo in the form of Equality and Consecration. These abilities definitely make it much easier for Paladins to deal with sudden threats in a pinch.

Rogue – Assassinate. (5 Mana) This is (IMO) by far the best HR ability in the game thus far. As long as you can target it, Assassinate destroys any minion, indiscriminately. It's a tad expensive, but considering it's affect, I'd say it's worth it.

Shaman – Hex. (3 Mana) Like Polymorph, this isn't actually removal, it simply pacifies any minion you wish, as long as you can target it. And like the Polymorph, it's just as demoralizing to have your big, threatening minion turned into a helpless, green frog (at least the Frog has Taunt?).

Warlock – Siphon Soul. (6 Mana) This is indeed expensive but it, like Assassinate, indiscriminately destroys any targetable minion you need it to. Aside from this, Warlocks also have Twisting Nether, but that's something else entirely.

Warrior – Execute. (1 Mana) Though this ability does have a rather interesting condition, damaging minions is fairly easy to do. With this mind, I'd say that this is the second best removal tool in the game as it, indiscriminately, destroys any targetable minion that you need it to, when you need it to.

I left Priest to last as it's the focus of this article. Shadow Word: Death/Pain, Holy Fire/Nova, Shadow Madness, Mind Control and the Auchenai Soulpriest + Circle of Healing combo. Nearly all of these abilities are insanely expensive... SW: Death and Pain are the only cheap abilities to cast, and for good reason, they're severely limited.

SW: Death (3 Mana) requires the minion to have 5 or more Attack and SW: Pain (2 Mana) requires the minion to have 3 or less Attack, leaving that 4 Attack as a “sweet spot”. This opening is massively damaging to the priest as it makes it next to impossible to kill these minions, some times.

I was playing, as a Priest, against a Priest, and I had played a Sunwalker. I buffed the Sunwalker with a thought stolen Divine Spirit and then it was MCd by the other Priest. He/she then buffed it's health again with their Divine Spirit, and it took me a good 3 or 4 turns just to chew through it's health... Needless to say, this minion (my own minion) dealt a good 12 to 16 damage to me before I managed to kill it. How this is fair, I don't know. (Before y'all say “you should have MCd it back”, I would have if I had it, but I didn't...)

This isn't the only instance in which 4 Attack minions have severely screwed me over, just about any 4 Attack minion, even a Warlock's Succubus, is simply really difficult to deal with. The reason for this is our other removal. Holy Fire, aside from MC, is a Priest's only reliable removal as it, as long as you can target it, indiscriminately deals 5 damage to whatever minion you need it to and then heals you for 5 health. This (Holy Fire) is just about a Priest's only way of dealing with minions like the Chillwind Yeti, however... it costs 6 Mana... (Like a Warlock's Siphon Soul)

Holy Nova is a great ability, but it's fairly expensive (5 Mana). However, not only does this ability deal damage to all enemy characters, but it heals all friendly characters as well. This ability has saved me more times then I can remember, but it's so tricky to use as it only deals 2 damage. The reason as to why this is a problem is simply because of how the Meta-Game currently is. Everyone's using cheap costing minions with 3 health that buff other minions... Yes, this can be buffed with Spell Damage, but it's fairly impractical to have Spell Damage in your deck simply for 1 ability, perhaps 2. Even then, we'd have to first acquire said Spell Damage minion, and then be able to cast both that minion and the Nova in 1 go or else the SD minion would get killed and the combo would be lost.

Shadow Madness may only cost 4 Mana, but it doesn't actually remove anything from anywhere. If your opponent, as a Priest, has a 3, or less, Attack minion on the field, you can temporarily take control of it with Shadow Madness. The minion gains Charge and you're free to attack whatever you want to, as long as it isn't stealthed. This can be used to “kill two birds with one stone”, but can be tricky. Taunt can get in the way and it's also not able to target 4, or more, Attack minions...

Mind Control is, by far, the most hated Priest ability, understandably so, but realistically... it's the Priest's only guaranteed removal, and it costs 8 mana... Like Shadow madness, this ability is a way to deal with 4 Attack minions, but at such a hefty cost (that is only going to get even more hefty (nerfed to 10 Mana)). Not to mention that it can't target stealthed minions or the Faerie Dragon.

And lastly, the ASP + CoH combo. This combo is by far the best way for a Priest to deal with 3 and even 4 Health minions in mass numbers, it bypasses stealth and the FD's shield but, it hits your minions as well and is hard to acquire. This combo, like the Paladin's combo, is left completely to chance and is, more often then I can count, the only thing that will save my hide from certain defeat.

By turn 4 (for 4 Mana) a Priest, using this combo, can completely wipe the board, excluding the Soulpriest, (assuming the minions don't have more then 4 Health) but is left completely to RNG to actually get the combo. Why Priests have to resort to such gimmicky crap is beyond me (the same is true for Paladins).

I simply feel that the Priest class is weak and needs to be re-worked (buffed) a tad to be more consistent, removing such abilities as: Divine Spirit/Inner Fire, Cabal Shadow Priest/Lightspawn, etc... For abilities that make sense and can be relied on. I could go on and on regarding this topic, but I feel I've babbled enough. If you've got to this point, I congratulate you and I hope you agree with me.
Edited by JohnCP on 11/29/2013 8:36 PM PST
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Posts: 135
SW: Death (3 Mana) requires the minion to have 5 or more Attack and SW: Pain (2 Mana) requires the minion to have 3 or less Attack, leaving that 4 Attack as a “sweet spot”. This opening is massively damaging to the priest as it makes it next to impossible to kill these minions, some times.


I think the fact that Priests have Assassinate for 3 mana way makes up for the fact that there's only 1 attack value those spells can't hit. To be honest, the Shadow Word spells are pretty overpowered considering it only costs 3 mana to remove a powerful creature.
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Posts: 16
Can I just tell you without even reading the wall of text that the priest is insanly overpowered and should be nerfed. I love how people playing the class can justify their said class by comparing it to others. Enjoy the nerf
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Posts: 174
11/27/2013 09:58 AMPosted by Demonic
Can I just tell you without even reading the wall of text that the priest is insanly overpowered and should be nerfed. I love how people playing the class can justify their said class by comparing it to others. Enjoy the nerf

I'd like to know, from your PoV, how Priest is "OP". I've presented evidence as to why I think that Priest is actually in need of buffs and all you do bash the class.

I understand that, unlike most other classes, Priest doesn't have to resort to obtaining board control through playing a minion and using said minion to destroy the opponent's minions, we can do that through the use of abilities. But, if this is why people think Priest to be "OP, then I don't understand it, because control in this form has been in many card games way before this...

I'm unsure of what you're referring to when you say "justify", but I'd like to know why comparing Priest to the other class' is a bad thing. I understand that they have different playstyles, but I'm not comparing that, I'm comparing the abilities themselves.

Why people have to be so hostile toward other people I'm also unsure of, but I don't think neither I nor anyone else that chooses to play a Priest deserves hostility of any kind. All-In-All. Instead of blindly bashing the Priest try playing it and seeing for yourself how underwhelming the class actually is...
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Posts: 174
11/27/2013 09:38 AMPosted by elfignutz
SW: Death (3 Mana) requires the minion to have 5 or more Attack and SW: Pain (2 Mana) requires the minion to have 3 or less Attack, leaving that 4 Attack as a “sweet spot”. This opening is massively damaging to the priest as it makes it next to impossible to kill these minions, some times.


I think the fact that Priests have Assassinate for 3 mana way makes up for the fact that there's only 1 attack value those spells can't hit. To be honest, the Shadow Word spells are pretty overpowered considering it only costs 3 mana to remove a powerful creature.

I'll be honest, I'm not quite sure how you think that SW: Deathis Assassinate. Assassinate destroys any minion of any Attack value for 5 Mana... Both of the SWs for Priest have quite severe restrictions on them because most 4 Attack minions are actually very strong and simply because you might get the correct ability when you need it, leaving you wide open if you don't have any other answer.

(IMO) Priest is meant to be played as an ability heavy class. For example, my current Priest deck has 19 abilities in it... This is because of how the abilities of Priest are spread out (currently). We need 2 abilities to do a half-assed job that one ability can do and we need a combination of a minion and a healing ability to do the job that one ability should be able to do.

Now, quite obviously, because of how many abilities I have in my deck this is contributing to why I'm having such a difficult time advancing in Diamond League and is probably the cause of my rant(s) in this post, but this is how I like to play control decks. In MTG: Duels of the Planeswalker (2014) there is a Blue/Red control deck called "Dodge and Burn". This deck can be played as a spell heavy deck and works very in doing so. I run only 4 creatures in that deck and am able to completely lock my opponent down until I get and am ready to play my creatures to finish out the match. Why shouldn't I be allowed to do that in this game?
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Posts: 349
11/27/2013 08:35 AMPosted by JohnCP
I left Priest to last as it's the focus of this article.


you forgot the battlecry from the cabal shadow priest, and this mini mind control is permenent (assuming the minion u take is kept alive), so also very powerful removal.
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Posts: 349
11/27/2013 06:42 PMPosted by JohnCP
I'd like to know, from your PoV, how Priest is "OP".


i have played a priest deck a few times, both in arena and constructed (note: in constructed i have nowehere near the kind of cards needed to make a "perfect" deck for a priest), in arena, i have won games i should easily have lost, purely due to how much spell removal, and healing the priest class has, i have recovered from having 3 health, and being dead next turn, to 29 health and winning the match through self healing up the wazzoo, and seriously powerful spell removal, no other class in game can be this versatile when it comes to both outgoing damage, and self sustaining play, not even stacking battlecry healing minions is it possible, i personally think the healing portion of things needs to be toned down slightly, because as it stands, with the right cards, u can keep a battle going to fatigue, out healing the fatigue for a time, and win by drawing the game out.

furthermore, u complain about 4 ATK being a sweet spot, assuming u can afford to not use it for outgoing damage purposes, inner fire can be used on 4 ATK minions to great effect, either taking them above the 5 ATK threshold for SW:death, or below the 3 ATK threshold for SW:pain so there are ways a priest can negate the "sweet spot" problem to some degree, it's not like every minion u come up against that has 4 ATK can't be dealt with as a priest, not by a long shot.
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Posts: 174
11/27/2013 09:16 PMPosted by Rogoth01
I left Priest to last as it's the focus of this article.


you forgot the battlecry from the cabal shadow priest, and this mini mind control is permenent (assuming the minion u take is kept alive), so also very powerful removal.

No I didn't. Cabal Shadowpriest may, kind of, act as removal, but it's severely limited (2 attack). not to mention that it costs 6 Mana.
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Posts: 174
Look. I understand why a lot of people hate playing against Priests, I too hate it when I go up against other Priests, but I deal with it and usually win. But control will always be apart of card games. And the only real difference between a Priest and any of the other class' is our tools.

Instead of relying on minions to remove our opponent's minions from the battlefield, we rely on abilities. I understand that we have a lot of abilities, but there are ways to work around them. Simply zerging a Priest will more then likely result in a win for you.

I too, Rogoth, have come back from the brink of death only to win the match, playing as Priest, but that's simply what the Priest does. Priest is the only class that has the inate ability to heal, without it we can't win... at the very least, it would be severely difficult to do so.

And the fact that we are so reliant on our abilities, if you build passive-aggressive control like I am, hurts us a lot because that leaves very little room in our deck for minions. This makes us rely on powerful minions like the Venture Co. Mercenary, for example.

And one thing you have to remember is that Arena is very different from Constructed. You're not allowed to preconstruct your deck in the same way as Constructed and you're allowed to exceede the 2 card limit, which is what makes Priest super strong in Arena.

One thing that I must admit is that I actually never thought about using Inner Fire as a way to work around the "sweet spot", thanks for bringing it to my attention. :)
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Posts: 7,549
Gain board control early. It's what a priest does best.

Early minions that need to be killed in one turn or else be faced with priest healing.

Insane card draw potential with minion.

Most games a priest can get to a near full hand within the first couple turns, as well as have 1 or 2 minions on the field for multiple turns that just can't be cleared, or won't be attempted to clear for risk of healing negation and card draw.
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Posts: 174
Gain board control early. It's what a priest does best.

Early minions that need to be killed in one turn or else be faced with priest healing.

Insane card draw potential with minion.

Most games a priest can get to a near full hand within the first couple turns, as well as have 1 or 2 minions on the field for multiple turns that just can't be cleared, or won't be attempted to clear for risk of healing negation and card draw.

It's called control. Every card game has it and it, hopefully, isn't going away any time soon (at all) in this game. I say "hopefully" because control decks in card games are very much needed (IMO) as they set the standard a lot of the time and give players that needed variety. If there weren't any control decks then everyone would be playing the exact same decks as everyone else, which is more/less what we've already got in this game.

Control decks are supposed to be difficult to deal with otherwise they wouldn't be considered "control", but this doesn't mean that they're unbeatable. Instead of complaing about how you can't beat a Priest in a match, learn how they opperate and work toward being able to beat them.
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Posts: 135
I'm not quite sure how you think that SW: Deathis Assassinate. Assassinate destroys any minion of any Attack value for 5 Mana... Both of the SWs for Priest have quite severe restrictions on them because most 4 Attack minions are actually very strong and simply because you might get the correct ability when you need it, leaving you wide open if you don't have any other answer.


Are you implying you'd Assassinate a 4 damage minion?
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Posts: 174
11/28/2013 06:26 AMPosted by elfignutz
I'm not quite sure how you think that SW: Deathis Assassinate. Assassinate destroys any minion of any Attack value for 5 Mana... Both of the SWs for Priest have quite severe restrictions on them because most 4 Attack minions are actually very strong and simply because you might get the correct ability when you need it, leaving you wide open if you don't have any other answer.


Are you implying you'd Assassinate a 4 damage minion?

If it imposed a threat, yes... Abilities are in our decks so that we don't have to use our minions as removal tools. Sometimes this can't be avoided, but such is the way of things. All-In-All. 4 Attack is quite a bit for one minion to have, and if you haven't a Taunt minion on the field, or any other way of dealing with it, why not use Assassinate on a 4 Attack minion?
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Posts: 349
11/28/2013 06:26 AMPosted by elfignutz
Are you implying you'd Assassinate a 4 damage minion?


archmage says hi.
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Posts: 7,549
Gain board control early. It's what a priest does best.

Early minions that need to be killed in one turn or else be faced with priest healing.

Insane card draw potential with minion.

Most games a priest can get to a near full hand within the first couple turns, as well as have 1 or 2 minions on the field for multiple turns that just can't be cleared, or won't be attempted to clear for risk of healing negation and card draw.

It's called control. Every card game has it and it, hopefully, isn't going away any time soon (at all) in this game. I say "hopefully" because control decks in card games are very much needed (IMO) as they set the standard a lot of the time and give players that needed variety. If there weren't any control decks then everyone would be playing the exact same decks as everyone else, which is more/less what we've already got in this game.

Control decks are supposed to be difficult to deal with otherwise they wouldn't be considered "control", but this doesn't mean that they're unbeatable. Instead of complaing about how you can't beat a Priest in a match, learn how they opperate and work toward being able to beat them.


Priest control dominates all other control. Early advantage is always in favor of priest with both minions difficult to finish off due to healing, as well as card draw. I was giving this as advice to the player complaining about Priest being weak because of the 4-atttack sweet spot.
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Posts: 174
11/28/2013 12:45 PMPosted by Mith
I was giving this as advice to the player complaining about Priest being weak because of the 4-atttack sweet spot.

I see. I figured you were simply another person complaining about how "Priest is OP". My apologies. Whilest I understand what you're talking about, the fact is that all the cards in the world, for the Priest, can't deal with 4 Attack minions on their own, you have to go that extra mile before being able to kill almost any minion with 4 Attack, it's like trying to cut a steak with a butter knife (it isn't exactly the easiest thing to do).

And control isn't about "early advantage", it's about patients and moments of opportunity. This is where the Priest excells, because of it's inate ability to heal, but a lot of the time that isn't even enough simply because of this major flaw in the Priest.
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Posts: 952
You've got it backwards.

Shadow Word: Death should be removed for more consistent removal. Something that's not condition-based and won't affect how people think outside of playing actual games.
Something that can deal with the 4 attack minions!

While you may find that the 4 Attack "Sweet Spot" makes Priests weak, it also has a negative impact on how people play the game, namely, when building their decks.

If SW:D is replaced with a more consistent removal like...

Shadow Word: Hunger
2 cost: Restore health to your opponent's hero equal to a target minion's current health. Destroy the minion.

Text: To eat is to live, right?


THEN the Priest would be stronger AND there'd no longer be some damned sweet-spot.

It's really not about Priest's control or minion-stealing. It's the fact they have 2 (4 in deck-count) cards that make your heavy-hitters cry or betray you.
That affects how we think when editing our decks - Which no other class does.

If SW:D didn't exist, even Mind Control, as it is now, would probably be considered more acceptable, then maybe we could stick 4 heavy-hitters in our deck and not think "These two will be MC'd, and these two will probably get SW:D'd..."

----

Not having to think "Ugh, I hate Priests, so I won't add ___, cause he's [5+ attack]" is the current dream.

----

Now, you're probably thinking... "Well, what's stopping from using SW:Hunger or whatever, on our heavy-hitters?"

This: The fact it can be used on weaker creatures!

Ever seen a Mage use Polymorph on a Knife Juggler, or Senjin Shieldmaster? I've seen it.
Being able to bait out the class's amazing removal so you can pull out your real trump card, is what makes cards like Polymorph, Hex, and Assassinate so great.

The lack of conditional-activation means your opponent can make mistakes with it. That's what makes them strong, yet balanced!
Edited by JunCurium on 11/28/2013 11:13 PM PST
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Posts: 7,549
11/28/2013 05:31 PMPosted by JohnCP
I was giving this as advice to the player complaining about Priest being weak because of the 4-atttack sweet spot.

I see. I figured you were simply another person complaining about how "Priest is OP". My apologies. Whilest I understand what you're talking about, the fact is that all the cards in the world, for the Priest, can't deal with 4 Attack minions on their own, you have to go that extra mile before being able to kill almost any minion with 4 Attack, it's like trying to cut a steak with a butter knife (it isn't exactly the easiest thing to do).

And control isn't about "early advantage", it's about patients and moments of opportunity. This is where the Priest excells, because of it's inate ability to heal, but a lot of the time that isn't even enough simply because of this major flaw in the Priest.


It isn't a flaw. It is a balance that other classes have to play to give them the leg up they need to have hope of overcoming the early advantage the priest almost always gets.
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Posts: 174
@JunCurium (I didn't want to quote you as your post is huge :P)

I like this idea alot, actually. I can, generally speaking, tell when someone is attempting to bait out my SW: Pain, so something like "Shadow Wrod: Hunger" wouldn't get baited out easily with me. But in any case. I like this idea because it seems practical and "makes us whole again" (Dead Space reference :P). But seriously, Priest needs a buff like this, lol.

11/28/2013 10:54 PMPosted by Mith
It isn't a flaw. It is a balance that other classes have to play to give them the leg up they need to have hope of overcoming the early advantage the priest almost always gets.

It may be a balance, but it (IMO) is a massive chink in our armor, and while I understand that no class should be so strong that very few people can overcome them, no class should have, what I do consider to be, a flaw that can be so easily exploited and (IMO) abused to the point where it makes it very difficult for anyone to play that one class...
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Posts: 7,549
11/29/2013 02:36 AMPosted by JohnCP
It isn't a flaw. It is a balance that other classes have to play to give them the leg up they need to have hope of overcoming the early advantage the priest almost always gets.

It may be a balance, but it (IMO) is a massive chink in our armor, and while I understand that no class should be so strong that very few people can overcome them, no class should have, what I do consider to be, a flaw that can be so easily exploited and (IMO) abused to the point where it makes it very difficult for anyone to play that one class...


It's not a massive chink in our armor. We have four removals for super cheap that can be used for stupid good efficiency. SWP gives us really strong early game control, and SWD gives us really strong late game control. Four removals is more than any other class, so I don't think it's unfair, imbalanced, or even a weakness that we don't have a removal for a 4 attack minion. There are, without a doubt, many better ways to deal with 4 attack minions than to waste removals on them. Use your clerics and your healing for board control and card draw early game so that you have what you need to deal with 4 attack minions that are coming around the corner, and if that doesn't work, make sure you've given yourself enough of an early game advantage as to nullify whatever trade or damage those 4 attack minions might do to you.
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