I've been busy playing the new single-player adventure as soon as it released. In 4 runs, I tried each available hero and cleared both of the released wings on normal. Eased through both wings using Mage, and then failed on final bosses with my first runs using the newly unlocked Shaman & Hunter.
I haven't tried heroic yet but I'm excited by the possibilities, since normal mode itself felt reasonably challenging, extremely customizable, and very fun! Awesome voice lines. Great art. Interesting new treasures, passives, and deck ideas to play around with!
This adventure seems to have addressed every major issue I can think of re: the other single-player adventures released since Dungeon Run. Some initial observations:
Dungeon Run sometimes wasn't fun because you might get offered bad card buckets, or get offered buckets which have no synergy with your current deck, and then have no way to adjust your deck accordingly. You'd end up limping to a final boss using a crappy deck and then get owned. Heist guards against this a little because on every run, you get 2 friendly encounters with Bartender Bob, who offers a chance to double up on your good cards, reduce spell costs in your deck, add some extra random cards, or even get rid of some crappy cards. Sure, there's still a lot of randomness involved, but I was always glad to get the encounter and I always ended up improving my deck! And overall, Heist seems less dependent on crazy synergy in your deck because the bosses aren't super-overtuned (maybe this is different on heroic lol, but that would be a feature there, not a bug).
Monster Hunt only had 4 unique classes and a 1-of run through was enough to not ever do it again because it was just the same setup over and over with some random shuffling of bosses. Even with just two wings of Dalaran Heist, we've got three heroes, each with a choice of three hero powers, and several different combinations of starter cards. And they're meaningfully different and worth checking out! Even though I cleared both wings with Mage, I'm up for doing them again (even if the bosses stay the same) because I unlocked different hero powers and card loadouts for the class in the process. Doing it again would feel different!
Rumble Run was my least favorite single-player expansion in a while because the shrines were not very interesting, there was no boss hero power variation, it was all about immediate snowballing (unlike dungeon run and monster hunt, to a degree), and of course there was no way to select the shrine you wanted when starting a run! Heist is an unbelieveable improvement in comparison. You get to choose, you can track your classes again, and it brings back the fun boss encounters with unique hero powers, synergies and decks. AND they seem relatively balanced to play against, unlike some RR bosses. It's early days, but none of the encounters felt OP or annoying to play against unlike particular shrines in RR.
In short, Dalaran Heist seems to:
- Address the drafting issues in Dungeon Run
- Offer FAR, FAR more replayability than Monster Hunt
- Allow you to choose your loadout easily, unlike Rumble Run
- Afford a huge degree of customization when deck building that NONE of DR, MH or RR offered
- Have a whole new suite of fun bosses with great art, voice lines and hero powers / decks
- Bring back a heroic mode, just like the oldschool adventures, for the masochists of HS!
In a way, I was lucky that they waited a month to release this, because it allowed me to accumulate the gold required to buy the wings without having to pay real money for it. For those of you wondering whether it is worth it (whether gold or $$$), even from the little I've seen so far, I can assure you that it is BY FAR the best single player experience we've had in HS, even counting the oldschool adventures (Naxx, LoE, Karazhan, all of which I've played).
If you spend money to buy packs, you should absolutely consider trying this out. The few packs you miss out on are more than made up for by the experience. And if you don't want to use money and don't have any gold saved, it's not impossible to get 700 gold on a weekly basis starting right now if you need to!
Just check out the first wing. You'll know if you're into it. I genuinely can't think of any improvement to the overall structuring of this adventure. Even the weekly releases are going to allow me to have time to really explore and dig into it, wing by wing.
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