It's a better Spikeshot Goblin, plain and simple. It is an awesome 1-drop that usually has to be dealt with before turn 3 or 4. Why? Not only does Claws of Valakut make this thing into a Howitzer, but it also came out in the same set as Grafted Exoskeleton, which while not making it as big as Claws, it put your opponent on a 4-turn timer minimum. And why is it better than Spikeshot Goblin? After all, Goblin only costs 1 mana to activate whereas this costs 3. The big difference is that Elder can activate multiple times a turn whereas Goblin can only activate once without outside influence (like an Umbral Mantle). Now, the one issue with this card is that without anything on it, it's not that great. That and it doesn't get going until turn 3.
Pros: It hurts a lot with the right enchantments/artifacts, doesn't tap to activate
Cons: Requires a fair mana investment, requires right enchantments/artifacts