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"Oops..." -  Dunemaul Shaman

Forgetful, previously known as clumsy, is an ability which grants a minion or weapon a 50% chance of doing something when attacking. Forgetful is a type of triggered effect.

While the term forgetful is not featured in card text or otherwise found in-game, it can be found in the game data for these cards. On most forgetful cards, the following wording is used: 50% chance to attack the wrong enemy. Though forgetful effects don't always necessarily redirect the attack. Some cards, such as  Ogre-Gang Rider, have different 50/50 effects during attacks.

Introduced with Goblins vs Gnomes, the forgetful effect is usually paired with ogres and related cards.

Notes[edit | edit source]

  • A forgetful minion has a 50% chance to attack an enemy target that is not the intended target, if such an alternate target exists. If this occurs, the new target will be randomly selected from among all other enemy characters with even chances, including both heroes and minions.
  • The forgetful effect can stack, with no known limit to the number of instances a minion can possess at once.[1][2][3] In the case of multiple forgetful effects, each instance of forgetful is checked for separately, after the previous one has completed. For example, if a  Dunemaul Shaman attacks while  Mogor the Ogre is in play, he will first check to see if he will attack his intended target, and if not, will select a new target; he will then check a second time to see if he will attack his current target at that point.
  • It is therefore possible for targets to switch to an unintended target with the first forgetful trigger, then switch back to the original target with the second.[4]
  • By engaging in combat with a randomly targeted enemy, forgetful can allow the character to hit minions with Stealth,[5] or even Immune targets.[6] In the case of Stealthed minions with more than 0 Attack, this will cause the enemy minion to lose Stealth, since it will deal its combat damage in exchange.[5] Stealthed minions with 0 Attack will not deal any damage in exchange, and so will not lose Stealth, but can still be struck by forgetful targets.
  • There are some cards that have a percentage chance of triggering an effect, such as  Cho'gall, Twilight Chieftain or  Ogre-Gang Rider. However, these are not considered Forgetful effects, since they do not specifically affect redirecting attacks.
  • When targeting an attack with a Forgetful minion,  Mayor Noggenfogger's question mark targeting arrow is used instead of the normal arrow.

Forgetful and Secrets[edit | edit source]

The forgetful effect triggers during the same step of the attack sequence as most Secrets. When a forgetful minion attack triggers a Secret, the effect that triggers first is determined by which was played first.[7] This can make order of play extremely important.

  • Example 1: An  Ogre Brute, which was played before an enemy  Noble Sacrifice, attacks an enemy. The forgetful effect triggers first; Noble Sacrifice will then activate, and whichever target the Ogre Brute had selected, he will instead hit the Defender.
  • Example 2: An Ogre Brute, which was played after an enemy Noble Sacrifice, attacks an enemy. Noble Sacrifice activates first, summoning a  Defender; the Ogre Brute's forgetful effect will then activate, giving him a chance to instead strike another target, including his original target, thus overriding the secret's Taunt-like effect.

Secrets that activate from an attack will still activate even if the forgetful effect interrupts the attack. Attack-based Secrets will also check for activation each time a different attack is set in motion by the forgetful effect, if they were not already activated by an earlier planned attack.

  • Example 1: An Ogre Brute, which was played before an enemy  Explosive Trap, attacks the enemy hero but forgetful triggers, causing it to instead attack a minion. The Explosive Trap will activate even though the Brute is no longer attacking the player, prior to the Ogre Brute attacking its new target. If this destroys the Brute, the new attack will be aborted.[8]
  • Example 2: An Ogre Brute, which was played after an enemy Explosive Trap, attacks a minion but forgetful triggers, causing it to instead attack the enemy hero. The Explosive Trap goes off even though the Brute did not originally attack the player.[9]

Probability[edit | edit source]

  • With only the enemy hero as a hostile target, a forgetful character has a 100% chance to hit them, effectively negating its triggered effect.
  • With a single minion on the field, a forgetful character has a 50% chance of hitting its intended target, and a 50% chance of hitting the other.
  • With a 50% chance of hitting the wrong target, the percentage likelihood of any specific other enemy character being struck is 50 / [number of other enemy targets] percent, or 1 in 2 * [number of other enemy targets].
Number of other enemy targets 1 2 3 4 5 6 7
Chance of being hit 1 / 2 1 / 4 1 / 6 1 / 8 1 / 10 1 / 12 1 / 14
50% 25% 16.7% 12.5% 10% 8.3% 7.14%

Strategy[edit | edit source]

The main significance of the forgetful effect is that with multiple targets available, the player cannot be sure which target will be hit. This makes its use less advisable when there are high-Attack enemy minions on the board (unless they are desirable targets), as hitting them will cause the player a lot of damage. It adds further unpredictability when playing against minions such as Boom Bots.

Forgetful can be useful for potentially bypassing Taunt minions. For example, with 1 Taunt minion and 3 non-Taunt minions on the field, attacking the Taunt using a forgetful minion will have a 50% of hitting the Taunt, and a 12.5% chance of hitting any one of the other targets.

This can be useful for removing protected minions, or even for dealing lethal damage to the opponent themselves. For example, with only 1 Taunt minion on the field, attacking the Taunt using a forgetful minion or weapon will have a 50% chance of bypassing the Taunt and striking the enemy hero. In close games this chance at extra damage can allow players to close the gap.

Because of this possibility, when seeking to prevent an opponent with forgetful cards from hitting your hero while behind a taunt, it is effective to summon as many minions onto the field as possible. Each acts to decrease the likelihood of an attack reaching your hero should the attacker miss its intended target.

For further strategy and specific uses, see individual card pages.

Cards[edit | edit source]

Swipe left or right to see the cards.
GVG 065.png
GVG 054.png
UPCOMING 101549.png
GVG 066.png
WW 419.png
TRL 532.png
GVG 088.png
WW 420.png
DMF 068.png
GVG 112.png
AT 088.png

Terminology and lore[edit | edit source]

There is no official term for the "50% chance to attack the wrong enemy" ability. The term forgetful is currently preferred by the wiki due to its presence in the game data, where it is used to mark cards with the ability. However, this is still an unofficial term, and is not used in-game.

The ability was first previewed in the Goblins vs Gnomes: It's Not Ogre Till It's Ogre blog. The pertinent section reads:

The large, brutish, often clumsy ogres have a knack for “CRUSH BIG THING INTO SMALL THINGS,” making them a force to be reckoned with on the battlefield. Don’t have a trash compactor handy to mash that malfunctioning mech into spare parts? Get ogre it! Ogres aren’t particularly careful in what they hit and don’t take orders kindly—as long as they hit something, they’re satisfied. This makes them both unpredictable and dangerous in combat.
In Goblins vs Gnomes, many ogres will have the “50% chance to attack the wrong enemy” card text, reflecting their wild and uncontrollable nature. Like previously mentioned, ogres don’t care about what they hit as long as they hit “something,” so their ability can also potentially bypass Taunt and Stealth if one of their wild swings manages to connect. When you see an Ogre on the battlefield, watch out; something is about to get smashed!
[emphasis added]

This text provides multiple possible terms - clumsy, wild, uncontrollable, careless - but also several possible lore interpretations for the ability. Forgetful suggests ogres frequently forget which target to attack. This is reinforced by  Ogre Brute's trigger quote, "Wait... who?". However, clumsy suggests ogres attack the wrong target by accident, which fits with  Dunemaul Shaman's trigger quote, "Oops".  Ogre Ninja on the other hand appears to mis-target due to disagreements between its two heads - "No! That one." - although this could be interpreted as a kind of forgetfulness, or possibly the second head proving "wild and uncontrollable". None of the quotes appear to confirm the concept that ogres "don't care about what they hit". The only related non-minion,  Ogre Warmaul, presumably imbues the user with some characteristic of these ogres, or else has a mind of its own.

Patch changes[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Zeriyah on Twitter (X). (2014-12-02). 
  2. Ben Brode on Twitter (X). (2014-12-03). 
  3. Zeriyah on Twitter (X). (2014-12-03). 
  4. Zeriyah on Twitter (X). (2014-12-02). 
  5. 5.0 5.1 Ben Brode on Twitter (X). (2014-12-08). 
  6. Hearthsim IRC channel, 2015-02-14. [7:15pm] dyule: Interesting Ogre Fact: Ogres will attack immune targets as one of their "wrong enemies" [7:23pm] dyule: source is I just tested it. [7:24pm] dyule: And it was the hero who was immune, so the ogre did not take damage [7:24pm] dyule: (I had Mal'ganis down)
  7. Ben Brode on Twitter (X). (2014-12-08).