|Set:||Goblins vs Gnomes|
|Abilities:||Remove from deck|
|Artist:||Zoltan & Gabor|
Whenever your opponent plays a card, remove the top 3 cards of your deck.
So reaver. Much fel. Wow.
How to get[edit | edit source]
|Golden Fel Reaver||1600||400|
Notes[edit | edit source]
- The Fel Reaver's remove from deck effect is similar to a discard effect, but removes the card directly from the player's deck rather than from their hand. The effect is not considered a discard for synergy purposes.
- The Fel Reaver's effect will never cause Fatigue damage. This is because it does not actually draw cards, but simply removes them.
- Like most discard effects, cards removed through Fel Reaver will be revealed to both players.
- Assuming you go first, you will normally draw through 8 cards by the time you can play Reaver, leaving 22 in your deck. Should Reaver remain in play, your deck will run out after 8 opposing cards, reduced by 1 for each 3 times you draw.
- Like other card-playing triggers, the Fel Reaver's effect will occur following the playing of a card, but before it takes effect. For example, if the opponent attempts to use Thoughtsteal to copy the last two cards of the deck, the Fel Reaver will first activate from the card being played, and remove the remaining cards in the deck; the Thoughtsteal will then take effect, but will produce nothing, since the player has already lost all their remaining cards, leaving none to copy.
Strategy[edit | edit source]
Fel Reaver is a card that requires a specific type of deck to be utilised to its full potential. The card is simply so colossal that it is difficult to deal with at five mana, or even more. The card is extremely powerful for its cost, though this is put into perspective by the drawback, which is to remove three cards from the top of your deck, and destroy them, for each card that your opponent plays. Fel Reaver often looks worse than it is, though it is a card of two extremes; it will either lose, or win the game. If it wins as a result of attacking your opponent for a hefty amount of damage, it can be argued that there was no drawback, as the strength of the Fel Reaver was in its stats. However, the Fel Reaver can easily be blocked by Taunt, particularly Sunwalker or similar effects, such as the Fel Reaver being frozen, such as by a Frost Elemental. In the event that the Fel Reaver destroys all the cards in your deck, it can be argued that the game would likely have been lost anyway. Fel Reaver can generate extreme wins and extreme losses, put simply.
The downside forces players to use a specific type of deck, often a fairly aggressive one that utilises the strength of Fel Reaver to close out the game, by clearing minions with Taunt, or by simply doing huge amounts of damage. Fel Reaver also does not work well in decks that feature combo mechanics - such as Force of Nature and Savage Roar, which means that a player must use a deck that does not rely on specific cards to win, which can negate the purpose of Fel Reaver to some extent, as Fel Reaver is included as a mechanism to end the game.
The one disadvantage that the Fel Reaver's remove from deck effect always has is that the removed cards are revealed to the opponent. This allows them a glimpse into your deck, but more importantly can reveal which cards you have run out of. For example players who have removed their second copies of a specific card, or any legendary, will allow the opponent the knowledge that they will not be playing those cards later on. When a player loses a single copy of a card of which only one copy is commonly used in a deck, the opponent may also consider that the player is unlikely to have a second copy. Such knowledge can allow the opponent strategic advantage, safe in the knowledge that certain specific plays will not be available to the player.
Another disadvantage is that Fel Reaver's removal effect can eliminate cards that could otherwise be played indirectly through card effects: for example: the use of the warlock spell Sense Demons is harmed whenever a demon is removed, and the same goes for losing Secrets for Mad Scientist.
Two interesting beneficial interactions are that Fel Reaver directly counters the Iron Juggernaut's Burrowing Mine by removing it from the deck harmlessly; and that losing the cards prevents a priest from using Thoughtsteal to copy them.
Fel Reaver's negative triggered effect can be removed with a Silence. With the cost of this card being just 5 mana, in later rounds it is possible to play a minion or spell with a silence effect immediately after summoning Fel Reaver, preventing its effect from triggering.
Perspective[edit | edit source]
Some players consider the Fel Reaver to be a poor card, on the basis that it is almost guaranteed to cause you to lose several other cards. Seeing your most valuable cards burned before your eyes can be disheartening, and may seem like a catastrophic misplay. Additionally, for many players losing any cards feels inherently bad, and suggests the player is being placed at a disadvantage.
What is often not understood is that because the order of the cards in the player's deck are random, there is no actual difference between the Fel Reaver burning the top 3 cards of the player's deck, and it burning the bottom 3 cards of their deck. Since the vast majority of games do not see either player reach the bottom 3 cards of their decks, in most cases such a removal in fact has no impact on play. In essence, there is no practical difference between drawing a remaining card from a randomly ordered deck, and simply drawing a remaining card, at random.
As a rule: unless the player runs out of cards before the end of the game, any cards removed by the Fel Reaver will have no effect on which cards the player will draw.
This even extends to especially valuable legendaries - unless the very bottom of the deck is reached, the player is just as likely to simply not draw those cards that match as they are to have them removed.
Trivia[edit | edit source]
- Unsurprisingly, following its release, Fel Reaver's design was a common subject of misunderstanding by players, with articles such as Brian Kibler's Understanding Fel Reaver: Hearthstone Theory written to educate players as to the true nature and value of the card.
- According to designer Mike Donais in September 2016, the game stats for Fel Reaver are "almost" as "absurdly high" as Dr. Boom, at least in the Arena.
- The card's flavor text is a reference to the Doge internet meme.
Gallery[edit | edit source]
Patch changes[edit | edit source]
- Patch 18.104.22.16886 (2015-08-18): Now considered a remove from deck effect instead of a discard effect. Its card text has been changed from "discard the top 3 cards of your deck." to "remove the top 3 cards of your deck."
- Patch 22.214.171.12434 (2014-12-04): Added.
References[edit | edit source]
- Zeriyah on Twitter. (2014-12-04).
- Ben Brode on Twitter. (2014-12-05).
- TIL that if a priest plays thoughtsteal against a fel reaver with 3 cards in the opponents deck, the cards are burned first and the priest gets nothing (Reddit). (2015-02-08).
- Juicy Bits from Hafu and Mike Donais’ Co-Op, Pt 2. (2016-09-22).