With the new card Murkwater Scourge soon to be upon us, I thought it’d be cool to give a quick write-up on what the best monthly cards have been in the history of Legends.
This is highly opinionated so feel free to disagree with me. I found it harder to rank them the further down the list I went, so expect more discrepancies as you go down. Nevertheless, here is the list and some of my reasoning behind it.
Sower of Revenge – 99/100. Even though Aggro Warrior or even Redoran have not seen much play recently, especially with the Catapult nerf, this card allowed them to exist in the first place. And while their power may be temporarily reduced, this card will continue to allow them to exist in the future.
Black Hand Messenger – 95/100. Control Telvanni staple, tripling as removal, a body, and drain. When you think about it, it sort of puts Reverberating Strike to shame outside of perfect hits like on Cornerclub Gambler.
Dushnikh Yal Archer – 95/100. Functional support removal, allows decks like Control Archer to both stay alive vs. tokens and have a chance vs. support heavy decks.
Steam Constructor – 88/100. This card is insane and is just a good neutral card away from being pushed over the edge. If Mudcrab is ever nerfed again to say a 1/1, then Steam Constructor will be further from viability than it currently is. But you’re starting to see it pop up a bit in non-Dwemer decks as people experiment with 13-15 card neutral packages to help get off to explosive starts (Mudcrab/Constructor/Marked Man or Crown Quartermaster/2 Dwarven Dynamo/sometimes Yagrum, and I’d argue even Haskill is viable).
Ashlander Punisher – 85/100. With less people playing Lightning Bolts, this is a good on curve play for any aggressive Archer/Dagoth/Hlaalu deck. It fits perfectly in the 4-slot, where Archer previously had almost nothing. It procs Awakened Dreamer, activates Hlaalu Oathman, and has a great effect that pseudo snowball if it’s not dealt with. IMO it’s pretty grossly underplayed as you might have trouble remembering when exactly was the last time you saw one of these on ladder.
Altmer Dragonknight – 82/100. This card has a lot of potential in the future as it seems like Action Mage gets more and more new tools with every release. With the right card printed, this could soon become viable in Tokens, which is a scary thought. Even seeing a card like Manic Jack being printed has pushed this card ever close to playability. Even if you queue up ladder today, there’s a chance you might see a Mage deck playing this – for better or for worse. Once it gets snowballing, it can be a b*tch to deal with.
Blackwood Distiller – 80/100. It doesn’t have a great home right now but never write it off completely. Niche uses in Control Scout or variations of Control Telvanni can seriously do some damage if it’s left unchecked. Not a popular card by any means but one that needs to be dealt with, otherwise the 3 magicka advantage can create some blowout scenarios.
Mechanical Ally – 75/100. When it procs, this card is one of the best ally cards in the game. Getting there though is difficult. It excels in Dwemer decks, buys time, and creates a massive threat when paired with Halls of the Dwemer if both are left alive.
Ulfric's Housecarl – 69/100. I know you. You were only reading down to this point to see which card earned the glory of getting 69 points. Well, here you have it, the devious Ulfric’s Housecarl himself. He was once a feared warrior prior to his stat nerf that left him a 3/3. But with the recent Ash Berserker nerf, he remains relevant. These days though, you’ll almost never see more than 1-2 copies in a deck given all the new card draw and card generation – but sometimes, he’ll still feel like his old self and draw you 2-3 cards.
Murkwater Scourge – 61/100. I really don’t think this card is great, but when you compare it other monthly cards, it doesn’t look half bad. A 3/1 body for 4 in a tempo deck or mid deck is so unprecedentedly bad that you really hope that those curses will find turn 5 plays like Leaflurker. Two meta staples, Negation and Sharpshooter completely shut this card down meaning you just paid 4 magicka to generate a Curse. At least Murkwater Shaman presents an ongoing threat and doesn’t die to pings or silence. The fact that this is in green, which has notoriously poor 4-slot options, makes me give it a slightly higher benefit of the doubt than I would otherwise.
Worm King's Agent – 60/100. Every time I see this card on ladder, I think my opponent must have netdecked CHARM3R. It’s a niche card that has gotten worse with the printing of Wilds Incarnate (moose) but it still remains relevant. And with Catapult being nerfed, it might have slightly more breathing room if the meta slows down. At the very least, it’s playable, which is saying a lot compared to some of the other monthly rewards. Even with Moose, I can still see this card being relevant in a slower midrange Sorcerer or Telvanni that wants to put some emphasis on tempo plays.
Pure-Blood Elder 54/100. A card that will always make Ramp decks that much more scary. With that said, they are often too slow, lack ways to stifle Aggro, or ways to keep this alive until it can become of use. Had Ramp Warrior not just suffered nerfs on multiple fronts, I would have gave this card a way higher rating – maybe even in the 70s, as it was a core wincon when combo’d with rage. Until it finds it’s way back into a staple deck, or Control Warrior shows more promise post-nerf, I’m hesistant to give this a better rating.
Pack Leader 50/100. Compared to your average monthly card, Pack Leader is pretty good. Unfortunately, when you compare it to the myriad of options that yellow has in the 4-slot, it becomes pretty bad. That’s pretty much all I have to say about Pack Leader.
Frenzied Alit – 45/100. A nearly playable 1-drop? Not bad. Has synergy for the non-existing self-harm archetype, which still needs a few more tools to really become relevant. Despite all of the limited 1-drops in this game, you’re probably better off with nearly any other 1-drop that other colors offer.
Renegade Magister – 40/100. When this card was first printed, I remember seeing a lot of debate on how good it would be. As you know, it curves perfectly into Ice Storm and can make amplify the strength of a lot of smaller actions like Firebolt pretty well. For the most part though, it’s just too slow and is easily silenced – and if aggro is breathing down your neck, it’s going to hurt a lot to pay 5 magicka for this if you can’t reap any value out of it.
Prophet of Bones – 35/100. It’s a playable 1-drop that can find decent value later in the game. With that said, playable doesn’t mean it’s good, so you would probably be hard pressed to find a deck you want this in, especially with the recent nerf of Catapults. It seems like it’d be best slotted into a slower midrange deck that wouldn’t mind seeing this as it's turn 6 play.
Smuggler’s Haul – 32/100. One of the tougher cards to rank due to its niche use mostly in Market decks. The fact that there are pretty high impact 0-cost cards means that this isn’t completely irrelevant, as hitting anything with the word Fire in its name (Firebrand or Firebloom) means that you’ll get some decent value out of it. Is it playable? Probably. Is it great? Not really.
Conjurer's Spirit – 30/100. A really niche card in a meta abundant of support removal and very aggressive decks. It can definitely generate some value if your games go long enough, but it’s hard to proc consistently in every game. The dream of somehow keeping a Bruma Profiteer alive and this going at the same time seems like a rarity. Considering that you’d likely play this in a Token deck like Redoran, they’d probably win you enough games through their own power that you wouldn’t notice how few times this card actually does anything.
Stampede Sentinel 28/100. Compared to Protector of the Mane, this is marginally more playable. It’s a big body for 6 with Breakthrough, although its effect is rather small in scope. With that said, if you really want to play a 6-cost Giant, then Cradlecrush Giant renders this card irrelevant.
Protector of the Mane – 25/100. Outside of The Gatekeeper, 5-cost guards are just not in style and are too easily dealt with. Anyone who perceives this as a serious threat will likely have a way to deal with it, either by silencing it and leaving you with a body that’s way understatted or just straight up removing it 1 for 1.
Training Grounds 22/100. I’ll just say it, it gets hard to rank cards that are this bad. You might see this on ladder recently or have gotten high rolled from it, but I assure you, it’s only because the card is brand new. With that said, I only give it a 22/100 in the current meta. Once more Dark Elves/Nords/etc are printed, maybe this card will see play. But it is still a massive tempo loss and chances are it’ll be hard to make up the value before you either lose or your opponent removes it.
Frostscale Dragon 20/100. It’s a modified-for-the-worse 9-cost Ice Storm that leaves a body on the board. I can see it having fringe uses in Dagoth if Mid gets some more tools to keep the game going longer, but as of now it just doesn’t have great use.
Chaurus Breeding Pit 15/100. If you managed to play this card without straight up losing the game first, then congratulations – it's probably the first time you managed to do so in about 20 games. All jokes aside, I don’t think this card has ever seen play outside of Larson’s meme Telvanni deck where you would combo it with Mushroom Tower.
Hist Grove – 13/100. Two words: dead card. Once upon a time, it preyed upon Control Mage and other decks that didn’t have removal. Aggro decks have gotten faster, Control decks have more support removal, and the decks that this card would benefit are dead.
Conjuration Tutor – 11/10. This card is extremely slow and very situational. And it got much worse when they printed more support removal and Control Tribunal became the Control deck of choice – because this card is best paired with an Altar deck.
Battlereeve of Dusk – 10/100. This card is just bad. It requires you to not only have a decent board but also that board needs to be full of keywords. In that case, isn’t there a good chance you might have just won already? If you want to mess around with keywords, then play a Mentor’s Ring in your Mid Sorc, Mid Dagoth, or Control Telvanni – it’ll go way further and create some blowout situations. Heroic Rebirth – 5/100. Too random, too niche, and too much of a tempo loss. If you want to take your chances with this type of card, play Wabbajack instead – which believe it or not, did see play once upon a time. I guess you could argue this has fringe use in a Unite deck, but you’re probably better off playing other cards of that nature if you insist on rolling the dice.
Elsweyr Lookout – 0/100. It’s a 3-cost 1/1 who’s first pilfer turns it into a 2/2. Weak to silence, guards, removal. Overall poor card but it probably high rolls someone once a week who’s opponent tries to ignore it completely and race in the other lane, or a Breton Guest who doesn’t understand that card text is a thing.
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