Do we need a change to ice block to prevent the second one?

Posts: 72
So here's my situation. I'm relatively new th Hearthstone, but still, I can grasp some of the meta, like "we have to be able to beat otk warrior and ice block alextraza molten giant mages".

So here I go on the ladder with an otk chaman, I meet a mage (Me-Hello, him-sorry).

Well, effectively, he plays an ice block, effectively, I bring his heath from 17 to 1 in one turn, triggering the ice block.

There, my situation, I feel like I'm auto winning since
-even if he plays alextraza, I have 18 dammages on the board.
-even if he plays a removal, I have spells in my hand

In the game, he actually played blizzard (+2molten giants, of course) and I won, but the tought crossed my mind, that if, in addition of freezing my minion (preventing me from trading his giants) he used a second ice block, it'd have been auto loose for me (with no possible solution in my deck, except for to hexes on the giants).

So, I was thinking that either we need ice block to be legendary (I don't think we need that, ice block would not be reliable anymore), either we need a way to prevent mages to play a second ice block right after the first one is triggered. (I don't think that it has been implemented yet, it it is implemented, please forgive my ignorance).

If you don't think the same, please share the way you've found to counter those two ice blocks in a row, I kinda feel powerless just thinking about it. (And please don't tell me that I have to play hunter to have flare in my deck, my hunter deck is terrible at the moment).
Edited by Neerzidaas on 1/2/2014 3:21 AM PST
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Posts: 939
Hypothermia isn't a bad idea, but it would be a very specific rule that would feel targeted at Mages. A lot of people don't really like those, unfortunately (including blizz =/).

Shaman spells tend to destroy a mage's momentum, but a mage has little problem clearing a whole board of totems. The whole stall/freeze shenanigans are part of the mage toolset, it's a strategy like another since the nerf, and indeed it's good at delaying OTKs but it doesn't guarantee anything.

I can't offer much advice, other than have direct damage spells against the mage. Rogue eviscerates, Druid starfires and even well-timed Lava Bursts tend to put a dent in my plans, although I realise not every deck runs those.
Edited by Vanish on 1/2/2014 3:37 AM PST
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Posts: 1,281
Or you can put some healing cards in the deck to counter direct damage :)
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Posts: 72
Well, actually, the fact wasn't that I couldn't pull my otk, it is that once I pulled my otk, and left it with just the one hp before the ice block trigger, he can play 2 molten giants, freeze my board, and put another ice block. (and there, even if I can trigger the second ice block, I can't cope with the attack of the giants (And I don't think that having taunts to prevent them from attacking is a good idea because of mages removals).

And since I do'nt think mage removals are the problems, I guess the problem lies with the second ice block.

Edit: and I do'nt really want to put healing cards in the deck becuase since I'll often have full board controll, mages shall have trouble bringing me below 20 without allowing me to pull the kill. (and that's way out of range for pyroblast) But that's still in range for 2 giants + freeze (but heal woudl'tn help much agaisnt those, I feel).
Edited by Neerzidaas on 1/2/2014 3:45 AM PST
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Posts: 270
Or you could play a control druid and get rank 5+ with minimal effort.
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01/02/2014 03:43 AMPosted by Neerzidaas
Well, actually, the fact wasn't that I couldn't pull my otk, it is that once I pulled my otk, and left it with just the one hp

Then don't OTK without a sure kill, I'm not sure what answer you're looking to get here :P
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Posts: 72
Could you please be more explicit, like in how control druid counter the double ice block issue (I can imagine the 5/10 taunt being a problem even with two molten giants and the second ice block on the field, but it can be sheeped quite easily).

Please forgive me if I miss something (English is not my native language, so I'm afraid I might).
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Posts: 72
01/02/2014 03:51 AMPosted by Vanish
Then don't OTK without a sure kill, I'm not sure what answer you're looking to get here :P


actually, I get the kill, theorically, if it isn't for the ice block. So I get him to one hp, then trigger the ice block (so the mage wins one turn) but there, if he manage to put his giants (and he will, ofc) and a second ice block, how am I supposed to deal with the second ice block (expecially if he freezes my minions to prevent me from trading his giants).

The topinc isn't about my OTK, it's jsut about the two ice block in a row issue (sorry if I failed to make my point clear in my first post).
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Posts: 154
01/02/2014 03:45 AMPosted by Superanima
Or you could play a control druid and get rank 5+ with minimal effort.


Druid control is a very solid deck. Shame it's one of the most expensive decks atm (3-5 legendary, many epics) so not many people will be able to benefit from your advice (myself included).

01/02/2014 03:51 AMPosted by Neerzidaas
how control druid counter the double ice block issue (I can imagine the 5/10 taunt being a problem even with two molten giants and the second ice block on the field, but it can be sheeped quite easily).


The crucial thing about playing vs mage is you can't let him wear you down. Mage spends a lot of his mana and cards on spells aimed at you so you should develop board advantage easily. Druid is one of the toughest matchups for a mage because it has many heals (2x 8hp heal for only 3 mana each + minions that heal him also). If you have 20+ additional hp in your deck in form of heals no mage would stand a chance if your deck is any good.

2 Iceblocks give a mage two additional turns to deal direct damage to you. If you negate most of his direct damage (heals) even 5 iceblocks won't save him. He will run out of spells and your board advantage will finish him eventually. Most mages focusing on Pyroblast+Iceblock combo don't even run flamestrike, making this even easier for you.
Edited by zamrai on 1/2/2014 4:05 AM PST
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Posts: 865
I agree about ice block but good luck getting people here to agree.

Tbh though I think giants are more broken than ice block itself. Any deck can run giants and if you drop a couple giants and whatever you were going to play anyways your probably going to win. Ive seen druid/paladin/warlock/mage games all come down to someone having a pair of giants while the other guys just like ohh well guess I lost.
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Posts: 72
01/02/2014 03:53 AMPosted by zamrai
2 Iceblocks give a mage two additional turns to deal direct damage to you. If you negate most of his direct damage (heals) even 5 iceblocks won't save him. He will run out of spells and your board advantage will finish him eventually. Most mages focusing on Pyroblast+Iceblock combo don't even run flamestrike, making this even easier for you.


Actually, my problem is about the first ice block allowing them to play 2 molten giants+another ice block (+something for 7 manas)
So since he has a second ice block on the field, I can't kill him, and let's assume he had a way to use his 7 manas so I can't trade his giants (frost nova, blizzard, flamestrike (even if you say flamestrike is rare in those decks? Didn't notice that, I'll pay more attention in the future, thanks for teh hint).

That means next turn (after we triggered his ice block with a spell, I suppose) he'll use his 2 molten giants to either trade so he can play alextraza and survive, or if you only have one taunt, or no taunt, he can sheep the taunt and attack with molten giants + fireball (wich is 23 dammages, with the ping). So even with the druid's heals, I still feel like it's a tought situation.

I can see how a control druid can (maybe) pull out a win out of this, but I still feel like this situation pulled by 2 ice block (+2 molten giants+probably alextraza) shall be prevented from happening by fixing the second ice block.

01/02/2014 04:02 AMPosted by Ellimist
Tbh though I think giants are more broken than ice block itself.


Well, in my opinion, they are not broken themselves, since you have a lot of ways to play around them (but maybe you're right and the giants might be nerfed instead of ice block to allow more diversity, but I don't really feel like they are a gamebreaking problem, just that they restrict the diversity of deck because they encourage people to run otk decks to counter them).
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Posts: 13,852
I wouldn't mind some sort of method of preventing back to back Ice Block, but it would be an extremely unique thing in the game; there are currently no rules that prevent you from playing cards in your hand as long as you have the mana. Beyond that, part of the problem is that Ice Block is a card you're allowed to put 2 of in your deck. So if you restricted usage of it, that would be kind of weird. For example, could you ever imagine the game saying something like "Well, you played a Gorehowl, so you can't play it again? Even though you can have 2 of it in your deck."
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Posts: 72
@Sar:Well, as I said, I wouldn't suggest to make ice block a legendary to limit his appearance in the deck to one, since ti would probably cause too much of a problem of reliability, so things are as you said.
Edited by Neerzidaas on 1/2/2014 4:50 AM PST
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Posts: 320
The only viable thing I see for this is a complete rework of how Ice Block works. It could, f.e. only block damage from Minions.
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Posts: 2,728
Iceblock need change, but blizzard will never admit the mistake they made when they nerved the freeze spells instead of the iceblock, so iceblock is here to stay forever.
Edited by Dido on 1/2/2014 5:50 AM PST
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Posts: 72
01/02/2014 05:28 AMPosted by Rade
The only viable thing I see for this is a complete rework of how Ice Block works. It could, f.e. only block damage from Minions.


Maybe it would make it too weak, but, that's true, maybe dividing damages by sort (like "when you take lethal damages, cancel those and become imune to damage of the same sort for the rest of the turn"). But that would seems like a super huge nerf, and I don't feel that the card needs to be nerfed that hard.
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01/02/2014 03:20 AMPosted by Neerzidaas
So here's my situation. I'm relatively new th Hearthstone, but still, I can grasp some of the meta, like "we have to be able to beat otk warrior and ice block alextraza molten giant mages".

So here I go on the ladder with an otk chaman, I meet a mage (Me-Hello, him-sorry).

Well, effectively, he plays an ice block, effectively, I bring his heath from 17 to 1 in one turn, triggering the ice block.

There, my situation, I feel like I'm auto winning since
-even if he plays alextraza, I have 18 dammages on the board.
-even if he plays a removal, I have spells in my hand

In the game, he actually played blizzard (+2molten giants, of course) and I won, but the tought crossed my mind, that if, in addition of freezing my minion (preventing me from trading his giants) he used a second ice block, it'd have been auto loose for me (with no possible solution in my deck, except for to hexes on the giants).

So, I was thinking that either we need ice block to be legendary (I don't think we need that, ice block would not be reliable anymore), either we need a way to prevent mages to play a second ice block right after the first one is triggered. (I don't think that it has been implemented yet, it it is implemented, please forgive my ignorance).

If you don't think the same, please share the way you've found to counter those two ice blocks in a row, I kinda feel powerless just thinking about it. (And please don't tell me that I have to play hunter to have flare in my deck, my hunter deck is terrible at the moment).


One cheap tactic beats the other, because the second wasn't played smart enough ;)

The idea that one play no matter if mage, warrior, priest or hunter can deal 20+ damage is an issue of HS and that needs a fix and not defensive plays who only work if the other guy plays his cheap tactic wrong :)

While I seldom play Mage I find it a bit funny that people cry about things that don't really matter, while they ignore the problem of the massive killing blows that classes can do in one turn.

I dealt 25 damage to a guy yesterday in one turn, it was not fair and it was cheap and in my opinion such plays shouldn't exist in card games, but if you don't play them yourself you cant get far in this game.

HS right now is a bit like wow, there you could also kill other players in one attack - not sure why Blizz supports this, it does prevent tactical play and skill.
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Posts: 72
Actually, I don't find dealing 20 damages in one turn an issue, 99% of the players are aware of what classes can do and ways to counter them (like, for example, any players know that they have to play a shaman to have a full board or they-ll jsut get bloodlusted, they also know that a stealth boosted minion has to be dealt with, etc)

Actually, the mage ice block ice giant deck also has it's counter, it is to prevent the giants from attacking you by killing the mage the turn after its ice bloc is activated (or by having a way to clear the giants, I guess?)

The fact that the second ice block can come right after the first one can make this winning condition unatainable, and that's what I find broken. (games often solves by a player gaining advantage. If a player gained advantage on me and I couldn't prevent him from using his 20/10 stealther questing adventurer from killing me, that's gg wp, no unfairness involved imo).

(Even magic have this sort of OTK mechanics, was quite fun playing "Kiln Fiend" and dealing 10/15 dammages turn 3/4, but decks shall be able to counter what may come to them to be good, you can't jsut build your own strat ignoring all other strats, and that's part of tactical plays and skills (or so I think, at least)).
Edited by Neerzidaas on 1/2/2014 7:04 AM PST
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Posts: 20,464
Or you could make Iceblock a spell, and not a secret.

You lose out the auto lethal protection, but you gain the ability to, for example, Ice block on turn 6 to mitigate the aggro swarm, and then nuke the swarm on turn 7 with Flamestrike.
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Posts: 848
Honestly, ice block is meant to counter OTK decks like yours. I just wish more classes had access to equally effective answers.
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