GRINCHER AGGRO MINI-GUIDE
Sup guys, here’s a short little guide on my aggro deck; I’ve provided
the list, a few notes on strategy, mulligans, and card choices.
DECK LIST (last Update: 22/07/16)
STATS & MATCH-UPS:
As you can see from the stats the deck has fairly well-rounded
match-ups. Lyonar is perhaps the tougest opponent but even then with
good play you can get close to 50%. As of typing (22/07) I am currently
S-rank #10 with the deck.
General Advice (going 1st): In general you
want to look for a 2-drop, 3-drop, and any ‘special’ card you may need
for that match-up (more on this later). Note also that this deck has a
lowish curve and not a huge amount of draw. Thus, be on the lookout for
cards like Spelljammer. Against decks that run Bloodtier Alchemist try
to avoid starting the game with Flameblood Warlock.
- General Advice (going 2nd): Consider keeping a card like Grincher and cards like Blazehound.
LYONAR: Lure is the only response to an Ironcliffe, keep it in hand. Blade can also be decent. If your hand is otherwise exceptional consider keeping a card like Spectral Revanant
(you’ll most likely need it).
Abyssian: Against Swarm, Grasp is a good keep. Consider keeping Lure / Tiger to deal with stuff like Bloodmoon Priestess. Against Cass you don’t need anything special,. just look for a
SONGHAI: Blade is great for Fox and Fourwinds.
Void Pulse is also a reasonable keep if the rest of the hand is good
(since its a race, heal is important in this match-up).
- VANAR: If you suspect its the Walls version Grasp and BloodTear are good. Against Faie I’d advise against keeping Blade/Grincher due to BBS, Against Kara Blades and Lure can be helpful.
- MAGMAR: Lure can be a reasonable response to Taygette. Other than that, you don’t need anything special.
- VETRUIVIAN: Nothing special required.
GRINCHER: When I analysed this card (see here)
I suggested that Grincher should be good in aggro since it provides
tempo, card draw, and “out of hand” damage. After considerable
playtesting I beleive that this assessment is basically correct. It is
also worth noting that lots of the artifacts have interesting/powerful
synergies with Spectral Blade (e.g. Cyclone Mask, Coldbitter, etc).
Even better than this though is Bloodsiren synergy (more on this later).
While some might not want to play this card “because RNG” I’d advise
you to try it out; in a deck such as this basically every outcome is reasonable.
BLOOD SIREN: before the addition of Grincher this
card was medocre but it has just recently been tipped over the edge (by
Grincher). This card can help you squeeze extra juice out of our low
health cards (e.g. Flameblood, Bloodtear, BBS, or even Turn 5 Tiger +
Siren) and artifacts. Moreover, since we are playing aggro normally we
want attack the enemy General each turn, and obvoiuslly we would
normally take 2 damage on the counterswing. But with Siren, we don’t
take counter damage and so therefore in many cases this ability is (in
the worst case) 2 heal which puts it on par with Healing Mystic.
Overall, I have been very impressed with this cards ability to keep the
pressure up; something as simple as Turn 1 Flameblood Warlock into Turn 2
Blood Siren + Blade can devaste the opponent.
GRASP: Grasp is a nifty little card that allows
us to apply damage without falling behind on board. Ideally, you’ll want the 3 damage to hit the enemy Generals face.
…and not Cass? Basically this choice is a simple one in my mind;
while both BBS are decent at controling the board it is only Lilthe that
can translate that control directly into face damage. Moreover, this
BBS has greater synergy with the deck (e.g. Primus Fist, Shadow
Reflection, Blood Siren, etc).
Oh, one more thing. And this is subtle. But in playing the deck I’ve
noticed that the two wraithlings give you more space to play your dudes.
This in many cases makes it easier to position a minion (such as
Grincher) aggressively without being too vulenerable to counters (e.g.
Holy Immolation). Its a small point, but it is nonetheless noteworthy.
Since this is an Aggro deck it is obviously intended to be played
aggressively. We need to constantly out-tempo our opponent and pressure
the life total. If we fail to do that any big minion (such as a Vorpal
Reaver of Ironcliffe) could be the end of us. Indeed, the decks only
response to such a threat is to bounce it away. This works, provided you
can take that tempo and win the game before said minion gets back into
Despite being an aggro deck you would be mistaken if you think that
this leads to fast games; some of the most popular decks right now
(Lyonar, Magmar, Cass) pack a lot of defenisve tools (e.g. Provokes,
Heals, etc) and thus games regually reach 7 + mana. Our deck meanwhile
packs triple Rev and a decent amount of heal (Siren, Pulse, Blade) thus
we can play the ‘value game’ too. For these reasons (and more besides)
I’d recommend that you proritise board control early-to-mid game over
pure damage (e.g. play a 3-drop minion instead of Shadow Reflection).
And with that in mind, I’d recomend replacing Shadow Reflection / Tiger
in the early game unless you have good match-up reasons to keep them.
As for positiong and stuff, well, all decks struggle if postioning and replace decisions are poor. Aggro decks, in this regard, are frequently less forgiving that control decks. In this deck, Positioning Grincher, for example, can be tricky due to its 4 health (e.g. weak to Holy Imolation, Makantor Warbeast) but this is very important to get it right since we can ill-afford to lose a 5-drop without good compensation.
My final tip for playing this deck is to learn your removal combos.
For example, you cannot race a Songhai player while they have a Four
Winds on the board. Thus you need to know (and dig for) combos that can
effectively counter such threats. In this particular case we can use
Bloodtear + Tiger or Lure + Blade or Spectral Rev. Simiarly, Bloodtear +
Blade are reasonable responses to cards like Taygetter or Silverguard
I think that covers the basics. Hopefuly
you enjoyed reading this mini guide and hopefully you enjoy playing the
deck too. If you have questions, feel free to ask away :).