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[[File:Bloodfen Raptor(576).png|thumb|right|200px|[[Bloodfen Raptor]], a simple minion card. A [[Beast]]-type minion, it has 3 Attack, 2 Health and a mana cost of 2.]]
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{{Card type define|4|Minion}}[[File:Bloodfen Raptor(576).png|thumb|right|200px|[[Bloodfen Raptor]], a simple minion card. A [[Beast]]-type minion, it has 3 Attack, 2 Health and a mana cost of 2.]]
 
'''Minions''' are persistent creatures on the [[battlefield]] that will fight for their [[hero]]. Minion [[card]]s can be recognized by their [[Attribute#Attack|Attack]] (a number displayed on a yellow sword, in the bottom left corner) and [[Health]] (a number displayed on a red blood drop, in the bottom right corner).
 
'''Minions''' are persistent creatures on the [[battlefield]] that will fight for their [[hero]]. Minion [[card]]s can be recognized by their [[Attribute#Attack|Attack]] (a number displayed on a yellow sword, in the bottom left corner) and [[Health]] (a number displayed on a red blood drop, in the bottom right corner).
   

Revision as of 13:49, 15 June 2021

Bloodfen Raptor, a simple minion card. A Beast-type minion, it has 3 Attack, 2 Health and a mana cost of 2.

Minions are persistent creatures on the battlefield that will fight for their hero. Minion cards can be recognized by their Attack (a number displayed on a yellow sword, in the bottom left corner) and Health (a number displayed on a red blood drop, in the bottom right corner).

Minions are controlled by the player who summoned them, and can be commanded to attack their opponent's minions, or even the opposing hero. Minions with Taunt can act as defenders, preventing the opponent's forces from attacking the hero directly with melee attacks until that minion is destroyed. Minions are a major element in battles between heroes, and are usually responsible for the majority of all damage dealt in a game.

While most minions are recognizable creature or character types from World of Warcraft, some, such as the legendary minion cards, depict major characters from Warcraft lore. Hearthstone also expands the Warcraft universe a little, with further exploration of established themes, and some new additions of its own.

Summoning

Kor'kron Elite(130).png
Abomination(597).png
Deathwing(474) Gold.png

Playing a minion card places that minion onto the battlefield. This process is known as 'summoning'. Each minion has a mana cost value, shown in the top left corner of the card, which shows the amount of mana you must pay to summon the minion. Successfully playing a minion card will transform the card into the minion itself, which will then appear upon the battleground represented by a portrait. Once summoned the minion will stay on the battlefield until it is destroyed or returned to the hand of its owner. Minions can be destroyed by reducing their Health to zero, or by using destroy effects such as Assassinate to remove them directly. Note that if a minion is returned to its owner's hand, or shuffled back into the owner's deck, its Attack and Health will return to their original values, and any enchantments will be removed. However, transformations will not be reversed by returning a minion to its owner's hand or deck; the transformed minion is considered an entirely different card from what it was transformed from, and that is what is "returned" to the deck.

Minion placement is sometimes significant, as certain positional effects take effect depending on position. For example, Explosive Shot deals high damage to a single target with splash damage onto adjacent minions, while Dire Wolf Alpha is a minion that provides an Attack buff to adjacent minions. When summoning a minion, the player can choose where to place it. However, once a minion has been placed it cannot be moved or re-placed, although the removal of a minion will cause the minions formerly adjacent to it to become adjacent to each other. Minions summoned or taken control of through spells, minion abilities or Hero Powers such as Totemic Call will always appear at the right of the battlefield, for both the player and their opponent.

Each player can normally have a maximum of 7 minions on the battlefield at any time. Once 7 friendly minions are on the field, the player will not be able to summon further minions. Minion cards and summon effects such as Totemic Call will not be playable, and any minion Battlecries and Deathrattles that summon other minions will be wasted. Other means of acquiring minions such as mind control effects will also be unplayable. However, it is possible to have more than 7 minions at once through the action of certain simultaneous effects or queued events, such as the combined Deathrattles of a Cairne Bloodhoof with Ancestral Spirit, or a minion controlled by Shadow Madness returning to its previous side of the board.[1]

Minions may be played directly from the hand, or through the effects of other cards or minions, and some effects distinguish between these two types of summoning. For example, Battlecries only activate when minions are played directly from the hand, while related triggered effects usually respond regardless of how the minion was summoned. Playing cards directly from the hand is termed 'playing', while the term 'summoning' is used to refer to either method. Indirect methods of bringing minions into play are the Summon ability, where a card creates a new minion in the battlefield, put into battlefield effects, which place a minion card from the deck directly into play, and transform effects, which replace one existing minion with another. Transform effects are not considered summoning, but still act to bring new minions into play, by replacing existing minions.

Action

"Attack the hero? Or the enemy minions? Answering correctly can often turn the tide of battle." - Practice mode tip

The only action players can direct minions to take is attacking. However, many additional effects and interactions can result from an attack, creating a wide range of gameplay options when multiple minions are in play. Additionally, many cards target or otherwise affect minions when played from the hand, many triggered effects do the same, and minions can themselves be attacked by enemy characters.

Minions enter the battlefield in a state of exhaustion (indicated by a "zzz" above them), and cannot attack while they are exhausted. Using a minion to attack will also exhaust it. Exhaustion lasts for one turn. Minions with Charge or Rush do not enter the battlefield exhausted. Exhaustion occurs however the minion entered the battlefield, whether through a play from the hand, a Summon effect, a put into battlefield effect, or a transform effect.

Minions enter the battlefield in a state of exhaustion (indicated by a "zzz" above them), and cannot attack while they are exhausted. Using a minion to attack will also exhaust it. Exhaustion lasts for one turn. Minions with Charge or Rush do not enter the battlefield exhausted. Exhaustion occurs however the minion entered the battlefield, whether through a play from the hand, a Summon effect, a put into battlefield effect, or a transform effect. The exhaustion that results from being summoned is sometimes known as summoning sickness, but with the release of Sunstruck Henchman is now also officially known as being asleep.

Each turn, any minion that is not exhausted can be commanded to attack one target. Minions with Windfury can attack twice. Minions can be commanded to attack enemy minions or the opposing hero. Minions can also be attacked directly by heroes, if the hero has increased their Attack stat by equipping a weapon or using certain spells. Druids can also use Shapeshift to do this.

In combat between minions it does not matter which target attacked which; each minion will suffer damage equal to the Attack of the other. This damage is dealt to both targets simultaneously. If either minion's health is reduced to zero (or below) they will be destroyed and removed from the battlefield. With combat involving heroes, direction of attack is important. If a hero attacks a minion, both targets will take damage equal to the Attack of the other, but if a minion attacks a hero, only the hero will take damage; any weapon equipped by the hero will not be used, and so will also not lose Durability. If a minion causes a hero's health to reach zero, the hero is destroyed, ending the game and granting victory to the surviving hero.

All minions have the innate ability to attack, except those such as Ancient Watcher which are specifically unable. Minions with 0 Attack (such as Mirror Images) cannot attack, but if their Attack reaches 1 or higher, they will become able to. Minions can also be prevented from attacking on any given round through effects that Freeze or otherwise incapacitate them, such as Frostbolt. However, incapacitated minions will still defend themselves if attacked.

Many minions possess abilities which can grant them additional powers or have special effects in response to certain events. As well as being attacked, minions can also be affected by numerous friendly spells, healing them, granting them new abilities, or using them to activate other cards; abilities.

Portraits

A selection of minions, each with its own ability. From left to right: Divine Shield, Deathrattle, a triggered effect, and Spell Damage

Certain abilities or properties will be reflected in a minion's portrait on the board through the addition of various features.

Status
  • Ability to attack this turn is shown by a bright green frame
  • Exhausted minions are indicated by a "zzz" text floating up from the portrait
Abilities
  • Taunt is shown by a large shield-like border
  • Triggered effects are shown by a small lightning bolt icon on the bottom of the portrait
  • Deathrattle is designated by a skull on the bottom of the portrait
  • Inspire effects are shown by a small blue flag icon on the bottom of the portrait
  • Poison is designated by a flask of bubbling poison on the bottom of the portrait
  • Spell Damage is designated by blue magical sparks over the portrait
  • Ongoing effects are designated by a pulsing yellow glow around the portrait
  • Stealth is designated by smoke across the portrait
  • Lifesteal is designated by a broken pink heart at the bottom of the portrait
  • Windfury is shown by moving wind torrents over the portrait
  • Silence is shown by shining purple bands across the portrait
  • Enrage is shown by red boiling blood around the portrait
  • Freeze is shown by ice crystals around the portrait
  • Divine Shield is shown by a translucent yellow cocoon around the portrait
  • Immune is shown by a rotating white border around the portrait
  • Rush is shown by a shifting thick green border around the minion.
  • Reborn is shown by a cracked blue glow around the minion.
  • Elusive minions are shown with a yellow fog
  • Spellburst and Frenzy minions are shown with a yellow sparkle on the bottom of their portrait.
Enchantments
  • Minions whose stats or abilities were magically increased have yellow magical sparks over the portrait
  • Numerous individual enchantments have unique visual effects, and there are too many to list here. A few examples:

Minion types

Several specific minion types[2][3][4] exist, often referred to as tribes or races, after similar concepts from other collectible card games. A minion's type does not directly affect the behaviour of the minion, but allows it to be affected by certain type-specific effects. For example, Tundra Rhino grants Charge to all friendly Beast minions while it is in play, while Murloc Warleader grants all friendly Murlocs +2 attack. Most minions do not have a type, but where present minion type is stated at the bottom of the card.

Minion type cannot be removed by Silences, but is removed by Transform effects, since the minion is entirely replaced.[5]

Hearthstone features the following minion types:

  • Beast - The most common specific type of minion, Beasts are capable of quickly forming a strong offense, and are favored by hunters (and to some extent, druids), with numerous synergistic effects providing strength in numbers.
  • Demon - Almost exclusively available to warlocks and demon hunters, summoning these powerful minions often comes at a price, with their undercosted stats offset by harmful abilities.
  • Dragon - Featuring more legendary cards than any other specific type, many Dragons come with powerful abilities. Dragon synergy mainly comes in the form of effects that require holding one in your hand.
  • Elemental - Introduced in Journey to Un'Goro, these minions depict elemental spirits who have attained raw physical form. Playing an elemental allows elemental synergy effects to activate on the next turn.
  • Mech - Introduced in Goblins vs Gnomes, they often reward the presence of another friendly Mech on the field with additional effects, be it through Battlecries or their specific Magnetic keyword.
  • Murloc - Typically a low-cost yet aggressive type, many Murlocs grow in power with each other friendly Murloc on the field, allowing them to quickly overwhelm an unprepared opponent.
  • Pirate - Favoring weapons and swashbuckling heroes ready to leap into the fray, many Pirate minions offer benefits based on the controlling hero's weapon.
  • Quilboar - Introduced in Forged in the Barrens, these currently only exist for flavor. They were originally intended to exclusively appear in Battlegrounds, and were added to Constructed for consistency across the game. In Battlegrounds, they revolve around the use of Blood Gems, and empower themselves and allies with them.
  • Totem - Totems are available almost exclusively to the shaman class, with basic Totems summoned through the Totemic Call Hero Power, with several more powerful options that can be summoned directly; certain effects become stronger the more Totems the player controls.
  • All - Introduced in The Witchwood, this is the rarest minion type. These minions benefit from and are affected by every type effect in the game.
  • General - The majority of minions do not possess a specific type, but are considered general minions. These minions do not benefit from any specific type effects.

Minion card list

Unfortunately, wiki limitations mean it is not possible to provide a single list of all minion cards. However, more specific lists can be found on pages such as Taunt, Charge, Beast, Mage, Legendary card list, One Night in Karazhan and Triggered effect. For a list of such pages, see the template at the bottom of this page.

A full list of uncollectible minions can be found on Minion card list. A full list of all minion cards can be found on Hearthpwn.com.

Related cards

Hearthstone features a wide range of effects which affect minions.

  • Effects specifically related to summoning and playing minions are listed below, as are effects specifically dependent on the presence of minions on the battlefield.
  • For effects specifically related to specific minion types, see individual type pages, e.g., Beast.
  • For abilities possessed by minions, or which grant abilities to minions, see individual ability pages, e.g., Deathrattle.
  • For effects related to minion death, see Death-related.

Summoning and playing-related

For Wild format listings, see Minion/Wild format

These cards have effects related either to the summoning of minions in general, or the playing of minions from the hand specifically.

Name / Desc Rarity Type Subtype Class Cost Atk HP Description
Murloc Tidecaller Rare Minion Murloc Any 1 1 2 Whenever you summon a Murloc, gain +1 Attack.
Mirror Entity Common Spell Arcane Mage 3 Secret: After your opponent plays a minion, summon a copy of it.
Shroud of Concealment Rare Spell Shadow Rogue 3 Draw 2 minions. Any played this turn gain Stealth for 1 turn.
Showing all 3 cards
Murloc Tidecaller(475044).png
Mirror Entity(475126).png
Shroud of Concealment(63358).png


Battlefield-related

For Wild format listings, see Minion/Wild format

These cards have effects that depend on the number and types of minions on the battlefield.

Name / Desc Rarity Type Subtype Class Cost Atk HP Description
Ritual of Doom Rare Spell Shadow Warlock 0 Destroy a friendly minion. If you had 5 or more, summon a 5/5 Demon.
Cogmaster Common Minion General Any 1 1 2 Has +2 Attack while you have a Mech.
Overwhelm Rare Spell General Hunter 1 Deal 2 damage to a minion. Deal one more damage for each Beast you control.
Argent Braggart Epic Minion General Paladin 2 1 1 Battlecry: Gain Attack and Health to match the highest in the battlefield.
Headhunter's Hatchet Common Weapon Hunter 2 2 2 Battlecry: If you control a Beast, gain +1 Durability.
Lushwater Murcenary Common Minion Murloc Any 2 3 2 Battlecry: If you control a Murloc, gain +1/+1.
Open the Cages Common Spell General Hunter 2 Secret: When your turn starts, if you control two minions, summon an Animal Companion.
South Coast Chieftain Common Minion Murloc Shaman 2 3 2 Battlecry: If you control another Murloc, deal 2 damage.
Transfer Student Epic Minion General Any 2 2 2 This has different effects based on which game board you're on.
Bonechewer Raider Common Minion General Warrior 3 3 3 Battlecry: If there is a damaged minion, gain +1/+1 and Rush.
Greyheart Sage Epic Minion General Rogue 3 3 3 Battlecry: If you control a Stealthed minion, draw 2 cards.
Lone Champion Rare Minion General Any 3 2 4 Battlecry: If you control no other minions, gain Taunt and Divine Shield.
Water Moccasin Common Minion Beast Rogue 3 2 5 Stealth
Has Poisonous while you have no other minions.
Barricade Common Spell General 4 Summon a 2/4 Guard with Taunt. If it's your only minion, summon another.
Draenei Totemcarver Rare Minion General Shaman 4 4 5 Battlecry: Gain +1/+1 for each friendly Totem.
Reckless Apprentice Rare Minion General Mage 4 3 5 Battlecry: Fire your Hero Power at all enemies.
Frostwolf Warlord Free Minion General Any 5 4 4 Battlecry: Gain +1/+1 for each other friendly minion on the battlefield.
Headmaster Kel'Thuzad Legendary Minion General Any 5 4 6 Spellburst: If the spell destroys any minions, summon them.
Tent Trasher Epic Minion Dragon Warrior 5 5 5 Rush. Costs (1) less for each friendly minion with a unique minion type.
Sorcerous Substitute Common Minion General Any 6 6 6 Battlecry: If you have Spell Damage, summon a copy of this.
Bloodboil Brute Rare Minion General Warrior 7 5 8 Rush
Costs (1) less for each damaged minion.
Showing all 21 cards
Ritual of Doom(475030).png
Cogmaster(475170).png
Overwhelm(329963).png
Argent Braggart(329936).png
Headhunter's Hatchet(475100).png
Lushwater Murcenary(464067).png
Open the Cages(389006).png
South Coast Chieftain(464057).png
Transfer Student(211502).png
Bonechewer Raider(210790).png
Greyheart Sage(210785).png
Lone Champion(475024).png
Water Moccasin(63357).png
Barricade(442040).png
Draenei Totemcarver(475067).png
Reckless Apprentice(475199).png
Frostwolf Warlord(604).png
Headmaster Kel'Thuzad(329877).png
Tent Trasher(388946).png
Sorcerous Substitute(329954).png
Bloodboil Brute(210798).png


Minion type-related

These cards have effects related to any minion type. For cards that interact with specific types, see the individual type pages.

Name / Desc Rarity Type Subtype Class Cost Atk HP Description
Tent Trasher Epic Minion Dragon Warrior 5 5 5 Rush. Costs (1) less for each friendly minion with a unique minion type.
Waste Warden Epic Minion General Any 5 3 3 Battlecry: Deal 3 damage to a minion and all others of the same minion type.
N'Zoth, God of the Deep Legendary Minion General Any 9 5 7 Battlecry: Resurrect a friendly minion of each minion type.
Showing all 3 cards
Tent Trasher(388946).png
Waste Warden(210814).png
N'Zoth, God of the Deep(378803).png


Trivia

  • The Mechanical and Elemental types were originally among these unused tags, until they were added to the game and retroactively applied to a number of pre-existing minions at the same time. Mechanical was renamed to Mech and added with Goblins vs Gnomes. Elemental was added in Journey to Un'Goro.
While these types may show potential for future gameplay directions in Hearthstone, their current appearance in the game data is simply a remnant from the game's early development stages. Some of these types can be seen in early screenshots, such as this one from the game's alpha.
  • The developers have considered adding an Undead minion type ever since the development of Curse of Naxxramas, and Mike Donais describes it as "the minion type that has come up the most often". The type was "talked about [...] a lot" during the development of Knights of the Frozen Throne, but the team ultimately decided that it was "not quite worth it" to implement. An Undead type may still be added one day, but there are currently no plans to do so. In Donais' opinion, there aren't too many disadvantages to making a new minion type, but one of the reasons the team chose not to do it was because of the addition of the Elemental type in the preceding Journey to Un'Goro expansion, and "doing two new minion types in a row didn't really make sense to me".[6]

References

  1. Hearthstone Mythbusters. (2015-02-08). 
  2. Yong Woo on Twitter. (2015-08-07). 
  3. Journey to Un’Goro promotional email: NEW MINION TYPE: ELEMENTAL Nothing is more primal than the elements themselves. Harness the power of the Elemental Minion Type cards and unleash them on your opponents.
  4. Chadd Nervig on Twitter. (2020-04-16). 
  5. Ben Brode on Twitter. (2014-11-24). 
  6. Mike Minotti (2017-07-19). Hearthstone: Knights of the Frozen Throne -- creating Death Knights and Un'Goro's legacy | VentureBeat | PC Gaming | by Mike Minotti. Retrieved on 2017-07-22.