This is probably the most difficult card to evaluate in the set, as it’s hard to speculate over its potential value without real experience. There are so many spells in the game and the value of stacking tendril generation to scale them up is unclear. Tendril generators beyond Yogg-Saron look very underwhelming, which suggests that either Tendrils are more powerful than they look at initial glance, or that Team 5 has been very cautious when balancing them. Keeping them underpowered so that they don’t become too prevalent in the format would make sense, considering their potential play experience issues.
Our thinking is that at some point in the game, the random value that comes from scaling Tendrils overcomes possible negative consequences of variance. The only question is whether it’s worth hard running Tendrils to scale them up faster, or whether Yogg-Saron is almost alone as a competitive Tendril card.
This seems like a very powerful pay-off for a spell-centric deck. Prison Breaker is unlikely to be active on curve, as playing 5 spells over the course of the first three turns is quite difficult to do for any deck. But once this card turns online, it’s quite devastating. A 4 mana 4/4 that deals 3 damage to enemies, meaning it goes face and doesn’t hit your own board, is absolutely cracked.
Many classes can potentially utilize Prison Breaker since its only requirement is a spell-dense deck, but two classes that we’ll particularly highlight are Druid and Rogue. Both classes utilize shells that are very heavy on spells, while not having AOE effects naturally available to them. Prison Breaker addresses their primary weakness. Druid is desperate for defensive tools to improve its matchups against aggressive decks. Rogue can even Shadowstep or Breakdance Prison Breaker to repeatedly halt an opponent’s advance.
Considering the broad deck restriction and strong utility, it’s hard to see this card not finding a home.
Eye of Chaos
The neutral Chaos Tendril generator. It’s about as bad as we could expect considering that even the class-specific Tendril generators don’t seem that strong on paper. A 5 mana 5/4 is a horrendous stat line. We’re spending 5 mana to develop a weak body that has no immediate impact on the board and doesn’t protect us in any way. If this is the first Tendril generator we play during a game, it’s not even guaranteed to make up for it on turn 6, since the Tendrils aren’t quite juiced up to swing the game back for us.
If Eye of Chaos sees competitive play, it means that Chaos Tendrils’ scaling potential is so strong that they’re truly parasitic, just like Jade Golems. As in, running as many Tendrils as possible is the correct move. We doubt that’ll be the case, but crazier things have happened.
Cho’gall, Twilight Chieftain
The fun legendary of the mini-set, Cho’gall gives you a 25% chance to corrupt the game with a random anomaly. If both players run Cho’gall, an anomaly is guaranteed. Anomalies affect both the player and the opponent. There is no reasonable way to build around them or leverage them in the deck building phase, since there are 20 of them and you don’t even encounter them that often. An anomaly can be considered a symmetrical effect that, on average, is going to equally benefit the Cho’gall player and their opponent.
If an anomaly doesn’t inherently tilt to the player’s favor, then Cho’gall’s net value is of a 6 mana 6/7 with taunt and lifesteal. Now, those are pretty good stats for the cost, but this is not a constructed level card. The card is going to be popular on ladder, at least initially, because it’s meant to be fun, but it’s unlikely to be optimal in any deck. A big beefy boy with a couple of defensive keywords has no guided synergies.
Yogg-Saron is the first neutral TITAN and the cornerstone legendary of Fall of Ulduar. It is also the only TITAN with a dynamic cost, reduced by spells you’ve cast this game. This further promotes the focus of Fall of Ulduar, which are spell-centric decks. This means that Yogg-Saron can potentially be the cheapest TITAN to play, even costing next to nothing in the right deck once you reach the late game.
Note that the discount applies to spells you’ve specifically cast from hand, not those randomly cast by Chaotic Tendrils or spells that are cast when drawn.
Yogg-Saron’s abilities are very control oriented, promoting a spell heavy deck with late game ambitions.
Reign of Chaos is Mind Control, making Yogg-Saron a Sylvanas for spell-centric decks. This is a powerful single target ability that can easily swing the game in your favor, especially if you’ve managed to substantially discount Yogg-Saron. Reign of Chaos also makes Yogg-Saron potentially the best answer to enemy TITANS.
Induce Insanity is a more powerful and consistent version of Mass Hysteria, which only directs enemy minions to attack other enemy minions. Mass Hysteria was a core 5-mana AOE effect in Priest back in the day, so this ability gives you the opportunity to deal with multiple threats on the opponent’s board. Once again, there’s massive swing potential here.
Tentacle Swarm fills your hand with Chaotic Tendrils. This is a strong value ability, which doesn’t necessarily require more Tendril support in the deck, but it might get better if that support exists. If Yogg-Saron is significantly discounted, you can play multiple Tendrils on the same turn you play Yogg, so while it looks like a value ability that doesn’t immediately impact the board, it certainly can.
Yogg-Saron looks like a meta defining card that will likely be utilized in many decks. Much like other TITANS, it is impossible to ignore. The discount potential makes it the easiest TITAN to combine with copy effects, so classes such as Rogue and Priest can abuse it very effectively. It is a prime candidate to be ran in Control Warrior, thanks to its spell-density and Chorus Riff. It is a huge boost to Druid’s defensive capabilities. On paper, nearly every class is a strong candidate to run Yogg. Death Knight (minion density) and Warlock (Pride/Sargeras) are the only classes we can think of, where Yogg could be an awkward fit.
All bow down to Yogg.