Ice block most OP card?

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Posts: 314
It reads: Take an extra turn in the late game for 3 cost. Also you are invincible. All this while in the same control class that can use their Pyroblast next turn.

For some perspective, this card is about as over the top as the MTG card that is considered maybe the most powerful card made: Time Walk. http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=time%20walk

How can anyone defend this card, it isn't like it takes skill or timing to use? Do any mages have any suggestions on how to fix it?
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Posts: 13,852
I have mixed feelings on Ice Block personally. That being said, there's an incorrect myth that Ice Block is the only card that lets you survive for an extra turn. There are a lot of cards that do that. For example, if you play a Giant and I Assassinate it, I've just survived for one extra turn. This is true even if I'm at 30 health when you do this, unless on the turn that you have lethal damage you're going to overkill me by 8. Or if I put any minion down whatsoever that you have to spend damage killing, that will often result in me surviving one more turn; once again, not necessarily that THAT particular turn was going to be the kill turn, but the idea that it's going to result in one additional turn for you to accrue enough damage to kill me.

The difference with Ice Block is two-fold, one good and one bad. The good is that Ice Block allows the mage to survive any amount of damage. So for example, Assassinating a Giant will allow me to live one extra turn in MANY situations, but not if you have 25 damage on the board on the final turn (not a common occurrence, but not an unheard of one either). The bad side of Ice Block is that it does nothing to change the board state. So for example, when I kill a giant, I've now traded 1:1 with you card wise, and it gives me a better chance of gaining board control and beating you down with minions. On the other hand, Ice Block lets me survive a turn but doesn't change the board state, so assuming I can't kill you next turn (which obviously mages can sometimes do with direct damage), the mage simply finds himself in a worse situation on the next turn (i.e. all he did was delay the inevitable).

Anyway, the point is, I understand the annoyance with Ice Block, and I found it broken when mages used to use it to safely drop Molten Giants and then Alexstraza their health back up. I understand there are a few broken combos with the card, but in general the card is nowhere near as good as most people that don't play mage seem to think. Frankly, it's actually strongest in the mage mirror matchup; it's a good counter to classes that try to kill you with direct damage (since in that case it actually is a 1:1 trade) but is far less useful against classes that will simply control the board and keep beating you down every turn.

Also, it's substantially different from Time Walk; you don't gain an extra turn from Ice Block, you LIVE an extra turn from Ice Block. That extra turn can still be spent by the Mage opponent to heal, kill enemy minions on the board, play additional minions, draw cards, etc.
Posts: 192
Time walk made you skip your opponents turn, could be played at whim and comboed to give you infinite turns. They are not really comparable.
Posts: 1,251
01/03/2014 11:27 PMPosted by Aza
It reads: Take an extra turn in the late game for 3 cost. Also you are invincible. All this while in the same control class that can use their Pyroblast next turn.

For some perspective, this card is about as over the top as the MTG card that is considered maybe the most powerful card made: Time Walk. http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=time%20walk

How can anyone defend this card, it isn't like it takes skill or timing to use? Do any mages have any suggestions on how to fix it?


Ice block can be pretty strong in the burn down type of decks, and it would be nice if secrets had more counters besides just flare, but calling ice block the equivalent to Time Walk is absolutely absurd. I cannot imagine how anyone with even a mediocre level of understanding of HS and MTG could make that statement.

You obviously haven't looked at many MTG cards before deciding to write this, because there are plenty of MTG cards with effects such as "You cannot lose the game and your opponent cannot win the game while this card is in play", "Your life total cannot change", "You do not lose from dropping to 0 life", etc. All of those cards are much more comparable to ice block, and none of them are considered even remotely close to Time Walk in terms of power.
Posts: 314
I understand my argument is a strongly worded comparison. But the mage counter argument of a 5 cost Assassinate (how do you like sheep at 3? Remember Assassinate has to deal with Death Rattle) card as an extra turn is pretty absurd. Also the example of having 25 damage on the board is a common occurrence only for mages because your strategy already was to freeze troops multiple turns so your opponent could do nothing. Your enemy can't cast 10 damage spells to counter that. I think the frustration for most people against these strong mage spell decks is there isn't really any counter cards outside of playing a Hunter for secret removal, and freeze really has no counter at all. I know you lose to getting rushed and that will be your counter argument, but we all run bad some % of the time.

As a mage remember you probably have card advantage due to your draw card spells and super efficient removal/stall cards. With Ice Block, a turn at the tale end of the game when you have the most mana can be more advantageous than you consider.
Edited by Aza on 1/4/2014 8:03 AM PST
MVP - Hearthstone
Posts: 13,852
01/04/2014 08:02 AMPosted by Aza
I understand my argument is a strongly worded comparison. But the mage counter argument of a 5 cost Assassinate (how do you like sheep at 3? Remember Assassinate has to deal with Death Rattle) card as an extra turn is pretty absurd. Also the example of having 25 damage on the board is a common occurrence only for mages because your strategy already was to freeze troops multiple turns so your opponent could do nothing. Your enemy can't cast 10 damage spells to counter that. I think the frustration for most people against these strong mage spell decks is there isn't really any counter cards outside of playing a Hunter for secret removal, and freeze really has no counter at all. I know you lose to getting rushed and that will be your counter argument, but we all run bad some % of the time.

As a mage remember you probably have card advantage due to your draw card spells and super efficient removal/stall cards. With Ice Block, a turn at the tale end of the game when you have the most mana can be more advantageous than you consider.


Well, two things. First, this isn't a mage "counter-argument", I'm just bringing up a perspective on the card that most people don't understand; namely, it's more effective to "survive one more turn" but running the enemy's minion off the board than it is to heal or make yourself immune to damage. Case in point; you see a lot of high-end decks that only run 1 Ice Block, but almost none that don't run 2 Polymorphs. The reason why is that in MANY situations, it's better to simply never lose board control than it is to survive for one extra turn. That is, if you can keep punching the enemy in the face every turn, and stop them from punching you, then there's no need to have a "don't take damage card" in the first place.

Beyond that, you're also inaccurate about mage card advantage; mage is just about the weakest class in terms of card draw. They can survive it because they tend to use more expensive cards compared to the next most comparable direct damage class, rogue. And mind, it's not that mages have BAD draw cards, they just don't have a lot of draw volume available to them. For example, Arcane Intellect is a decent card, but it only draws you a net +1 card; as such, when you fill your deck with the maximum number of these, it still only provides a net +2 card draw. And like I said, it's not that it's a weak card, but with the low volume, it's hard to scrape up much draw power.

Gadget Auctioneer can be used, but he's far more efficiently used with decks that combo together cheap spells like Rogue.

The last possibility is Acolyte of Pain, but despite popular misconception, it's actually a pretty inefficient draw card for mage unless you're going to buff its stats. Even if, hypothetically, the enemy just plain ignores it and lets you ping it with your hero power, it will cost 7 mana to gain a net 2 card draw (essentially, 2 more mana than Nourish, which does the same) as well as losing access to your hero power those turns for some other potentially important purpose.

Anyway, the point being, draw power is actually one of the primary weaknesses of the Mage class.
Edited by Sar on 1/4/2014 8:11 AM PST
Posts: 314
Arcane Intellect? Low cost card draw spell to go with uncounterable mage freezes, yes please?
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Posts: 13,852
01/04/2014 08:21 AMPosted by Aza
Arcane Intellect? Low cost card draw spell to go with uncounterable mage freezes, yes please?


Did you even read what I said? Read again, cause you clearly missed it.
Posts: 206
01/03/2014 11:27 PMPosted by Aza
For some perspective, this card is about as over the top as the MTG card that is considered maybe the most powerful card made: Time Walk.


Stupid comparision as hell, and you get this from the guy who know M:tG back from Invasion.

It's a friggin big difference between:
'Instead of losing game, take one shot more, maybe you'll get lucky'
and:
'Take another turn after this one'.

If you don't see this you're bad and you should feel bad.

Also learn what the tempo is, and how cards like Ice Block slow it down.
Posts: 314
Even though my example falters in areas, I appreciate all the abuse for bringing up the topic. Other people making Mage topics talking about strong cards are also receiving the same treatment here.

This is beta, try other classes and seek to understand before you devote yourself to a single class and shun feedback.
Posts: 48
01/04/2014 06:52 PMPosted by Aza
Even though my example falters in areas, I appreciate all the abuse for bringing up the topic. Other people making Mage topics talking about strong cards are also receiving the same treatment here.

This is beta, try other classes and seek to understand before you devote yourself to a single class and shun feedback.


prolly cause all you ppl do is rage about the card you never offer up any ideas to make it balanced. you come to mage forum where its more then likely then majority of ppl here are mage players then you attack their class and expect them to be like ohh yea bro lets be friends and debate this when u dont want to debate it you want ppl to be like your right this card is bull!@#$ lets just take it out. or maybe its because your topics are totatly stupid. ive lost plenty of games even with iceblock cause the opponent played it well or the opponent just out healed my damage and i had nothing left to kill him with did i go over to the pally forums and start talking about how they have like every heal spell plz nerf it breaks the game? no i didnt but im not an idiot either so there you go.
Posts: 314
Even though my example falters in areas, I appreciate all the abuse for bringing up the topic. Other people making Mage topics talking about strong cards are also receiving the same treatment here.

This is beta, try other classes and seek to understand before you devote yourself to a single class and shun feedback.


prolly cause all you ppl do is rage about the card you never offer up any ideas to make it balanced. you come to mage forum where its more then likely then majority of ppl here are mage players then you attack their class and expect them to be like ohh yea bro lets be friends and debate this when u dont want to debate it you want ppl to be like your right this card is bull!@#$ lets just take it out. or maybe its because your topics are totatly stupid. ive lost plenty of games even with iceblock cause the opponent played it well or the opponent just out healed my damage and i had nothing left to kill him with did i go over to the pally forums and start talking about how they have like every heal spell plz nerf it breaks the game? no i didnt but im not an idiot either so there you go.


There are plenty of people making suggestions on this board. My original post alludes to the low mana cost, power level, and low strategic need of timing for this spell - choose something about these aspects to bring to a good power level.

The problem is I know many mage players on this class board are probably better at playing this class than I am, I have not put in as much time on this class, but I understand the cards and how it plays. I come here hoping to strike a conversation about OP cards and mechanics, but all I see is defensiveness and insults.

There are other powerful classes and deck combos, but mages really stick out, and the most reasonable and well spoken person on this board has been Sar, but he doesn't really present a great picture for other classes chances at beating a good mage deck. I want to do my part to make Hearthstone a better game, and unfortunately that means calling for balance to certain Mage decks (due to some outrageous card balance) that are completely negating a huge swath of decks types of other classes.
Edited by Aza on 1/6/2014 3:17 PM PST
Posts: 48
01/06/2014 03:14 PMPosted by Aza


prolly cause all you ppl do is rage about the card you never offer up any ideas to make it balanced. you come to mage forum where its more then likely then majority of ppl here are mage players then you attack their class and expect them to be like ohh yea bro lets be friends and debate this when u dont want to debate it you want ppl to be like your right this card is bull!@#$ lets just take it out. or maybe its because your topics are totatly stupid. ive lost plenty of games even with iceblock cause the opponent played it well or the opponent just out healed my damage and i had nothing left to kill him with did i go over to the pally forums and start talking about how they have like every heal spell plz nerf it breaks the game? no i didnt but im not an idiot either so there you go.


There are plenty of people making suggestions on this board. My original post alludes to the low mana cost, power level, and low strategic need of timing for this spell - choose something about these aspects to bring to a good power level.

The problem is I know many mage players on this class board are probably better at playing this class than I am, I have not put in as much time on this class, but I understand the cards and how it plays. I come here hoping to strike a conversation about OP cards and mechanics, but all I see is defensiveness and insults.

There are other powerful classes and deck combos, but mages really stick out, and the most reasonable and well spoken person on this board has been Sar, but he doesn't really present a great picture for other classes chances at beating a good mage deck. I want to do my part to make Hearthstone a better game, and unfortunately that means calling for balance to certain Mage decks (due to some outrageous card balance) that are completely negating a huge swath of decks types of other classes.


pretty sure healadin is how u beat mage...and i bought that up. so you say theres ppl better at the class then you. so it could be im one of them and when im saying iceblock isnt the problem when i fight a warlock or a rogue and they get a strong start theres not much i can do even if i get iceblock its unlikely ill draw the 2nd one and if i do that gives me 1 extra turn u cant pyro and iceblock on the same turn...theres a reason for that there are times that i win off ice block too but its not just cause the card and i got lucky i had a plan i mathed out how much damage i could do with spells and made a strategic choice to stall the game out so i could use those spells.

01/03/2014 11:27 PMPosted by Aza
It reads: Take an extra turn in the late game for 3 cost. Also you are invincible. All this while in the same control class that can use their Pyroblast next turn.

For some perspective, this card is about as over the top as the MTG card that is considered maybe the most powerful card made: Time Walk. http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=time%20walk

How can anyone defend this card, it isn't like it takes skill or timing to use? Do any mages have any suggestions on how to fix it?


this isnt constructive at all. you started the fight...then you get mad when ppl are rdy to defend their class. your post reads passive aggressive as it can get. this is what i got out of your post..."mages are a skill less garbage class they all suck they just win cause they play op cards like pyro and ice block here look at this card from another card game which is cheaper and does something totaly different but its the best card in magic and its vaguely like iceblock so yea u should all stop playing mage cause you suck. any of you mages have an idea to fix this totaly bull!@#$ card cause i havnt even given it any thought cause im so mad my IQ dropped by 30 points." and thats what i got outta your post which is why i took the stance i did. good day sir.
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