Iyslander is a hero that many people have been intrigued by. She’s a fascinating hero, and many different ways to build her have seen success. Even before she received her set of supporting cards in Uprising, people were still playing her in blitz to great results.
Iyslander has a very powerful ability. Because of the nature of this game, decks are built to be as efficient as possible- and consequentially, the strongest play patterns and lines can frequently be disrupted by a single frostbite. Easy access to this disruption- combined with her consistent access to a powerful weapon- is where the bulk of Iyslander’s power comes from.
Despite how many different builds there were, and how many people were working on her, I had not seen an Iyslander build that I thought was overly impressive. She was plagued by clunky hands and inefficient damage output. Flashy cards like Encase and Icebind have powerful effects, but can be completely neutralized by arcane barrier 3 and a single blue pitch. On the other hand, decks that could present significant amounts of damage turn after turn could punish Iyslanders trying to set up a Frost Hex combo kill.
I think the only way to play Iyslander viably into a lot of the more aggressive decks out there is taking on a more tempo-focused role, where you deal efficient damage as much as possible and prevent their damage as efficiently as you can as well. Because of this, you are kind of forced to try to combine a reasonable damage output with disruption to race these aggressive decks. But her raw damage output with her damaging spells is low. Let's look at the math on some of the ice actions.
Michael Hamilton, the 2022 World Champion, has loved card games his entire life. He has a soft spot for control decks, and loves limited formats. For him, improvement in all things is a way of life.
Our narrator, Mark Chamberlain, is a long-time card game player-- but they're all sitting on the shelf while he practices Guardian in Flesh and Blood. Mark is based out of Colorado Springs, USA.
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