I am finally here to divulge my spoiler from the first batch of community spoilers. I got this around the time that Borderlands Lookout was spoiled but haven’t had the chance to create this write up. A lot has changed since then. A lot more cards have been spoiled which continues to morph the context in which we can evaluate this card. My card is not all that exciting, but I think it may be a role-player in a new archetype that may be debuting with the release of Flames of Xulta — Stonescar or FPS Dragons. My card is named Dread Hellkite. Here it is.
That’s right. We got another Nightmare Dragon — this time at Uncommon! This one is a 4/3 for 4 and 2 Shadow Influence that Can’t Block but has Flying and Deadly. On summon, play a Cowardice on an enemy unit. So, your opponent has a Sandstorm Titan in play when you cast this? You have the choice of making it unable to block or to hit one of their other units and try to force them to trade with your Dread Hellkite to clear the skies for your other / future Flying Units. While I believe this card will mostly be a draft card, I think it could be a role-player in a Dragon based deck as I stated above.
Currently competing with Dread Hellkite in the 4-drop slot are Crimson Firemaw, Raging Firemaw, Arc Dragon (technically) and Poaching Drake. As of the time of this writing, no other 4-drop Dragon related card have been spoiled. Raging Firemaw isn’t really a consideration nor do I really think you want to play Innate Conviction, either. Even if you did, that would technically make Arc Dragon a 5-drop as you’d have to spend turn 4 creating the card. I think Crimson Firemaw is the guaranteed include so really you’re debating between playing Poaching Drake or Dread Hellkite. They both have different strengths and weaknesses. Other than Den of Ordeals (which we’ll get to) and the super sweet card that it creates, Nakova & Molot, I personally don’t want to be in Primal and my first stop is going to be Stonescar Dragons where I potentially splash Den of Ordeals. Of course getting the FPS Display could potentially sway me…
What I’m really looking for is some kind of small dragon roleplayer for turns 1 through 3. I didn’t expect anything at 1. Currently we have Oni Dragonsmith as our 1-drop alongside cards like Seek Power and Torch, which I’m sure is plenty. For 2-drops, sure we could play Scale Seeker but it’s not my preference. There is the new card Smokedancer but it’s just a vanilla stat-stick until (currently) at least turn 4. That just doesn’t seem to be good enough to me but maybe I’m wrong? I think the 2 Units I’m most likely to play right now would just be something like Argenport Instigator and Ripknife Assassin. The deck is likely to look a lot like Stonescar Midrange but with a Dragon theme for some reason or another. Especially sense the best 3-drop for the deck (assuming we don’t go into Primal or at least not heavily) will still be Champion of Chaos and some number of Merchants. Yeah, sure, we’ll have access to the new card Vile Collaborator, but I’m currently thinking I’d just want one of these in the Market. I want some kind of cheap Baby Dragons to fill out my curve before I start thinking about jamming this card into my Main Deck as a 4-of. I definitely think we want the card for a giant life total swing when we’re behind or what have you, but just out of the Market.
We also have a brand new removal spell that is totally on theme and very flavorful for the deck in Cremate. A way for us to (somewhat freely) kill a Site without having to waste a precious attack on it and not go straight face with our damage. 4 is a lot for a kill spell in this game, but I think I’m down to play 4 of this in the main, but I’m not positive. I want 4 – 8 kill spells in the 2-drop slot and 0 – 4 above that. At the very least, I’d throw one of these in the Market over In Cold Blood or something.
Other cards we’d likely be looking to play in this deck are Eclipse Dragon, good ‘ol Xo of the Endless Hoard and possibly Black-Sky Harbinger off the splash. If we wanted to go super deep, we could try out Cruel Wyvarch but I think that’s a bit too out there (maybe in the Market, though?). I think we’d jam a Stonesmelt Dragon in to the Market for sure. Backtracking to Cremate and Eclipse Dragon, how cool would it be if Cremate happened to cost 1 less if you controlled a Dragon? Flavor win! I better get Scarlatch on the phone…
One of my favorite cards in the site is definitely Nakova & Molot which is only obtainable from Den of Ordeals at the moment. Technically Enemy of my Enemy and Nictotraxian among a few other similar cards, I’m sure as well. This site is really cool but is also really hard to evaluate. We currently don’t have many cards in the Fire-Primal-Shadow Factions that care about having Power in the void or can do much of anything with them being there. Most of the cards that can are in Time. While The End is Near is obviously one of my favorite cards, I’m kind of bummed to see it on this site that can’t utilize it all that well. Sure, there’s Stonescar Excavator but that’s not really what we’re looking for. I’m not sure how good Talon Dive will be in this deck (especially without Flying Units to fill out our curve earlier on without the assistance of Oni Dragonsmith) but my spoiler, Dread Hellkite, will absolutely love it. One of the things that I’m really liking on Sites in general is how they utilize cards that we don’t usually see outside of Draft. Streets Aflame is a great example of that. This could have just as easily been Torch. Plus the name is a great flavor win for the Site. On the flipside, it does help ensure you’re drawing gas for a while but I just don’t think this is where the deck wants to be. I feel like a Midrange Dragon Deck wants to go deep deep DEEP into the late game, but what do I know? I’ll tell you what I know. I know that I’m going to be working on some Dragon decks and making some Dragon videos those first few weeks of The Flame of Xulta and I’ll be sure to share those with y’all
If you throw all the cards we’ve talked about so far into a deck, we’re pushing 60+ cards, so some concessions would have to be made about our early game or the new sweetness, for sure. In addition, we don’t know the full set yet! There could still be those Baby Dragons or Dragon Eggs to fill out the curve in some way. More pay offs for being a Dragon Deck or a pay off for having power in your void in FPS! Hell, we could even have the FPS Display! I wouldn’t hold my breath on that last one, but the point is we don’t know the entirety of the set yet so anything is possible. Thanks for reading. Be sure to catch me live sporadically at twitch.tv/theplatypusking while I re-align my schedule and priorities.