Welcome to “The More You Know,” a segment where ironFIRE walks you through some obscure Hearthstone interactions that you may not be familiar with. Big thanks to Ultimate and Starlax this week for taking the time to play some challenge games, and a special thanks to TeamAmerica for his extra practice sessions.
This week we’re looking at a game between odd quest warrior and midrange shaman.
The game has progressed to the point where the warrior needs to play 3 taunts to complete the quest, and he can do it this turn with Phantom Militia… or maybe not. The warrior’s hand is full. When he plays the third Phantom Militia to complete the quest, which card ends up in his hand: another echo copy of Phantom Militia or Sulfuras, the quest reward?
The answer to this question surprised me, so I spent a lot of time figuring this interaction out. Shout out to TeamAmerica for doing some extra testing with me.
I haven’t been able to find any official Blizzard communication (nor any mention in unofficial rulebooks) regarding the timing of when an Echo minion re-enters one’s hand.
Before we begin this discussion, it helps to understand the timing of things that happen after a minion is played. For simplicity, let’s say there are 3 phases:
1. On Play (Questing Adventurer’s effect is triggered in this phase)
3. After Play/Summon (Knife Juggler and Mirror Entity are triggered in this phase)
Quest timing is known, but it is not consistent. For example, the warrior quest and the rogue quest both read “Play X minions” but the warrior quest triggers after the “On Play” phase and the rogue quest triggers after the “After Play” phase. This is why you get Sulfuras in hand even if you complete the quest with Stonehill Defender and a full hand, but you can mill the rogue quest with Novice Engineer.
If you’ve ever played with Face Collector, you may know that it puts a random legendary minion in your hand if you play it with a full hand. It does not return itself to your hand. This means Echo occurs after the Battlecry phase
This is enough to deduce that the quest is completed first, in the “On Play” phase. Then the Echo occurs, after the “Battlecry” phase. Sulfuras enters the hand before Phantom Militia.
But I couldn’t stop here. I needed to know one more thing.
Let’s jump away from our Warrior v. Shaman game to continue the above discussion. Does the rogue quest get milled when playing a fifth Phantom Militia with a full hand?
The Crystal Core does indeed get milled! This seems to suggest that Echo occurs during the “After Play” phase.
Okay, back to Warrior v. Shaman. The Shaman plays Electra Stormsurge, then plays Unstable Evolution on the Stormsurge. Does the Unstable Evolution get played a second time, even though Electra Stormsurge is no longer on the field after it gets cast once?
Electra Stormsurge’s battlecry reads, “Your next spell this turn casts twice.” The key is the phrase “this turn.” Electra doesn’t need to stick around for the Battlecry to take effect. Even if Electra got killed by Explosive Runes, her battlecry would make the shaman’s next spell trigger twice.
One funny thing to note: Ultimate got 2 echo copies of Unstable Evolution back in his hand, since the spell cast twice.
The game continues. Many, many battlecries are played on the Shaman side, including Thrall, Deathseer. It’s time for the Wock (discounted from an evolved Dreampetal Florist). Do the battlecries stop happening when the Shudderwock is evolved from Thrall’s battlecry, or do they continue afterwards, even though Shudderwock is not on the field?
The Wock stops wocking. Once Shudderwock is off the board, it can’t continue to cast battlecries. Same thing happens if you play Shudderwock into a Spider Bomb and Hagatha triggers first. Your battlecry stops abruptly, replaced by regular crying.
That’s it for this week’s The More You Know! Leave a comment if you can think of any interactions you’d like to see explored in the future.
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