Part one of our newest Hearthstone Tavern Brawl concept, “Battle of the Black Empire” featured cards and Hero Powers from the forces of the Old Gods. Part two sees players taking on the role of the king of the Titans himself, Aman’Thul, the Highfather.
Aman’Thul, the Highfather
Aman’Thul the Highfather was the leader of the Titan pantheon back when they were still making their journey across the universe to bring order to the planets they came across. In fact, when they came across Azeroth, it was he who reached out and destroyed Y’Shaarj to prevent it from forever scarring the planet. He was the creator of the constellar Algalon, and when the Dragonflights were created, it was a fragment of his soul which granted Nozdormu and the rest of the bronze dragons powers over time.
Hero Power: Force of Wills
When the Titans came across Azeroth and found it ravaged by the chaos and madness of the Old Gods, they created races known as the Titan-forged who would serve them and try to bring about order to the planet. Some of these races were afflicted with the Curse of Flesh by the Old Gods, turning their stony metallic bodies into frail fleshy ones. Eventually, races such as the Earthen, Mechagnomes, and Vrykul came to be known as the Dwarves, Gnomes, and Humans.
The Tol’vir were a race of stony constructs created by the Titans in order to keep lore and maintain the Titan lands of Uldum and Ulduar. When they were afflicted by the Curse of Flesh, they broke off into three major tribes, including the Ramkahen, Neferset, and Orsis. (2 per deck)
This is one of Algalon the Observer’s attacks during his boss fight in Ulduar, and the one which I decided had the catchiest name of them all; it just seems like a power which a Titan would have, “Cosmic Smash.” Say what you want about Warcraft storytelling, but you can’t deny some of their ideas are just awesome. (2 per deck)
A way to counter the Whisper mechanic so that your hand doesn’t get too bogged down with cards which you don’t want to waste mana on. I figured something like this would be necessary, considering the power of such a mechanic. (2 per deck)
Can I just say that the Tol’vir are one of the weirdest fantasy races I have seen in a mainstream fantasy series? I mean, they’re intelligent cats; made of stone, with wings; they have the anatomical limb structure of a centaur; and they have like an Ancient Egyptian sphinx-theme kinda going on. That’s a really odd combination of traits, but it still works in a weird way. (2 per deck)
I designed this guy to be like the ultimate Keeper of Uldaman. Rather than leaving a potential threat in the form of a 3/3 with whatever effect the card had before still active, this guy transforms the threat into a 0/2, effectively silencing the card in a similar manner to stuff like Hex. (1 per deck)
Now, you may recognize this guy from one of the most iconic and well designed Tavern Brawls we’ve had, “Unite Against Mechazod,” but what you may not know is that this guy was actually rebuilt from Titan-forged parts that gnomes found. When he was activated, Mechazod was programmed with one goal: cure the Curse of Flesh. Sounds like a noble aspiration, until you realize this involves transforming all living beings into mindless Mechagnomes to serve in his army.(1 per deck)
Hand of Norgannon
Norgannon was one of the most powerful Titans who worked alongside Aman’Thul to bring order to the universe. In addition to this, he was also the Keeper of Celestial Magics and Lore, and as such he held many secrets which have been lost to time. When the Dragonflights were created, a fragment of his soul was imbued into the Blue Dragonlight, granting them power over the magics of Azeroth. (2 per deck)
Keeper of Uldaman
It is still a wonder that this incredibly powerful card was printed to be a Common, meaning it dominates the Arena and significantly polarizes whether or not your Paladin deck is good or not based on its inclusion. (2 per deck)
The Halls of Ulduar
Mustard is my favorite condiment. Especially when it summons Titan-forged. (2 per deck)
Algalon the Observer
This guy right here. Not only is he one of the coolest and most memorable raid bosses from World of Warcraft in my opinion, but he is also just a crown jewel to one of the coolest raids in the history of the game, Ulduar. Topical too, considering it is the jail cell of the Old God Yogg-Saron. (1 per deck)
Orodur is the legendary weapon which Aman’Thul wielded during the era of the Titan Pantheon. In this case, it is a really helpful way to clear up your hand of Whispers without wasting your Mana. (1 per deck)
When the Titans left Azeroth in the care of the Titan-forged, they also created constructs to maintain order in their cities, and to ensure that the Old Gods whom they imprisoned there would stay locked up for all eternity. Of course, that didn’t work. Not really a foolproof plan in hindsight. (2 per deck)
Before they were afflicted by the Curse of Flesh and began to lose their way, the Mogul were a race of stony giants who worked alongside the rest of the Titan-forged to bring order to the land. Once they became flesh and blood, however, they strayed from the mission set by their creators and began to value power and strength over all else. This led the race to be the main rivals of the Pandaren on the continent of Pandaria. (2 per deck)
Avatar of the Coin
Fun Fact: During the development of Hearthstone, the developers played around with the idea that instead of getting the coin as compensation for going second, Player 2 would get what was essentially a Wisp. It was also called “Avatar of the Coin,” is used the art you see here, and its card text read as follows:
“You lost the coin flip, but gained a friend.” (1 per deck)
The giants were all created by the Titans for the purpose of shaping and maintaining the natural beauty inherent in the land of Azeroth. Lord Arkkoroc specifically is considered a lesser deity, and is the father to a vast group of Sea Giants in Azeroth. In fact, it is he who is depicted in the Sea Giant card that is currently in the game. (1 per deck)
“I bring life, and BLAARGH!!!”
-Alexstrasza, the Lifebinder, 2014 (1 per deck)
For those who only play Hearthstone and haven’t looked at the lore much, it may surprise you that Malygos actually went crazy and tried to stop all mortals from using magic in fear of bringing the Burning Legion back to Azeroth. The current Blue Dragon Aspect is named Kalecgos, who became a weird cross species love interest for Jaina Proudmoore. (1 per deck)
While it may not really work well in practice, Nozdormu is one of my favorite cards in Hearthstone because it really shows just how flexible the digital format can be. Only in a digital card game can things like this card, the Discover mechanic, and other things of that nature exist in a simple fashion. (1 per deck)
Ya know, I never really understood what that golden crescent shape floating above her head was. It’s just kinda there. Food for thought, I suppose. (1 per deck)
Before he was called Deathwing and was a servant of the Old Gods looking to destroy the world by bringing about the Hour of Twilight, the Black Dragon Aspect was known as Neltharion. While other aspects ruled over domains such as life and magic, Neltharion ruled over the land and came to be known as the Earth-Warder. His mind was not powerful enough, however, to withstand the whispers of the Old Gods who resided deep within the land which he was born to protect, and as such he went mad. (1 per deck)
Cleave of Gorshalach
Gorshalach is flat-out the most powerful weapon in the universe, and it was originally created and wielded by Sargeras, the champion of the Titan Pantheon, before he fell into madness and created the Burning Legion. (1 per deck)
Which deck/side would you choose in the Battle of the Black Empire? Sound off in the comments.
And be sure to check out our other Hearthstone Tavern Brawl concept, The Elemental Sundering.
Want to learn more about the Titans, the Old Gods and their constituents? Pick up World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1, the “definitive tome of Warcraft history [that] reveals untold stories about the birth of the cosmos, the rise of ancient empires, and the forces that shaped the world of Azeroth and its people.”