Hi guys, Smash here.
Today is the 11th and I thought I’d share a few ‘day one’ decklists with you rotten lot. Although not all of the cards have been released we have seen enough to begin thinking about what we might want to play once the expansion goes live. For me, deckbuilding is the most interesting part of card games and I thought i’d share some of my thoughts with you.
These lists are (for obvious reasons) not battle tested and some of them are a bit “out there” in terms of ideas. In my mind the aim of ‘day one’ decklists isn’t to be optimal but rather our decks should aim to be more ‘exploratory’ in nature.
In short, this post is about giving you lot a few ideas to try out and paths that I think might be worthy of exploration. Consider the following decklists as a canvas to be worked on rather than the finished portrait.
The Decks showcased:
(1) Tribal Vet
(2) Cascading Rebirth Mag
(3) Bangle Cheese
(4) Joseki Mech
(5) Arc Hai
(6) Swarm Creep (hybrid)
(7) Ghost Faie
Okay, lets begin!
The Big Idea:
1) Flood the board with our tribal critters, that’s 20 minions + bbs!
2) Buff them the fuck up (with Feralu, Inner Oasis)
3) If our shit gets fucked up get the board back with Zureal / Sirocco
4) Step 4) Finish with Nosh-Rak
1) Limited heal (only Aymara).
2) Very limited burst damage means you cannot finish the game without a big board.
3) If you lose board control and cant find a way to get it back its game over.
4) Low spell count means our deck will in most cases be inflexible.
1) Can snowball quickly. (e.g double pax into turn 2 Feralu)
2) Good board clear defences/recovery.
There are loads of cards you could try with a deck like this. You could lower the curve and go for more tempo (eg add stuff like tigers and/or primus fist) or you could try adding “bursty” finishers (like Stars fury combos) to offset that weakness. You could add/remove Golems and in their place just add different tribes (e.g. Dervish), or a bit of tech (such as Rasha’s Curse). Also notable is the omission of 1st and 2nd wish (I couldn’t find room for them, but maybe you can. ).
CASCADING REBIRTH MAG
The Big idea:
Cascading rebirth is a really really cool card when it comes to deck building; to get maximal value you are going to have to carefully consider what minions you use this card on, and those decisions are best made in the deck building phase, not during a match.
This particular deck does have a lot of crazy ideas but everything here does have a purpose. After a bit of thoughtful analysis I’ve come to the conclusion that the key breakpoints for Cascading Rebirth are 3, 5, and 6.
3 Mana minions turn into Elcuidator (great), Taygette (good), Drogon (good), Veteran (okay), The-Grow-thing (can’t even remember its name, lol –- bad) Wild Inceptor (very bad).
5 Mana minions turn into Makantor (great), The-Egg-dude (good).
6 mana minions turn into either Silthar Elder (great) or Unstable Leviathan (good).
So basically, we want to build a deck with these breakpoints in mind. For even more value, we want to find minions we don’t mind sacrificing for the greater good.
Jax Trusight is a good example, Jax itself is a 6 mana 1/1. Which means we can for a total of 8 mana and 2 cards potentially get 4x 1/1 ranged in the corners and an Elder somewhere else. Likewise, we can turn our 4/2 Makantor into an elder after attacking.
In the case of Gnasher there is a greater variance in outcome if we rebirth it but on the plus side Gnasher’s dying wish makes it well worth sacrificing.
Ash Mephyt is probably the craziest idea here, but since Ash spawns 3 copies of itself (that means 3x 5mana dudes) it should be a really nice way to set-up Crebirth play, especially since it makes for a decent flash target.
Btw, the purpose of Primus and Razorskin here mostly to try to turn Jax into a win-condition.
1) Decent ‘out of hand’ burst combo’s
2) Great value plays and good synergy.
1) Currently an awkward curve; risks missing turn 1 plays.
2) No dispel (in the current version).
3) No Global AoE (only local AoE, eg Makantor/Gnasher).
Dying wish cards (e.g Azure Horn Shaman, Doiltas, Sarlac) work well with C Rebirth, as does actuall rebirth cards (e.g. Ragebinder). Chakram is also worthy of some consideration. For other ideas you should consider the fact that since you choose when (and on what) you cast C Rebirth you could build for less synergy; you could for example cut the Ash and just run a decent card instead.
The Big Idea:
This incredibly ambitious basically gives zero fucks about what you are doing (so normal songhai then, amirite guys? Kappa), the aim is to dart around the board stall and then just kill them with a big flashy backstab combo.
Examples of Cheese:
Bangle + O Blow + Shadows Mask = 16 dmg, 6 mana.
Bangle + O Blow + Shadows Mask*2 = 24 dmg, 8 mana.
Bangle + Saber-Seal + P-Fire = 13 dmg, 7 mana.*
*no backstab required
1) If you win, nobody will tip you and your mother will disown you.
2) This deck does one thing and one thing only; no AoE and a fragile win-condition makes this deck easily countered and fucking hard to pilot.
3) If you don’t draw Bangle, your damage output drops significantly.
1) Your opponent will quit the game for good if you win.
There is a lot of things you could try here; maybe a Cyclone Mask and/or Grincher for more Bangle Shenanigans, or maybe you shore up the decks weaknesses and add a bit more removal/AoE/alternate win-conditons/healing/more backstab synergy (eg Repulosor beast).
Another direction to consider is cutting down on the OTK portion of the deck and concentrate on build a “normal” songhai deck with the potential for some stinky cheese.
The Big Idea:
So this deck is basically a traditional mech deck with the inclusion of one new expansion card (Joseki).
On reddit I noticed a lot of people hating on this card. Hating not only because its RNG but also because they think its bad. Well, the RNG aspect isn’t up for debate but I will offer a counterpoint to all those that think the card sucks.
In my view, Joseki has a very niche use, but I do feel that in a few decks it might end up shining, I believe that one such place is an aggressive version of mech.
So the basic strategicy of these deck is to assemble Mechazor! And then use Joseki to mess up our opponent. You see, one of the downsides to Mech decks is that post Mechazor you usually have a bunch of lacklustre & understated minions, Thus trading a crappy Helm of Mechazor for whatever is in their deck is a trade worth making in most cases (note; playing Joseki Before you have Mechazor would clearly be a terrible idea!)
Also consider what happens if our opponent gets something like Flameblood or Dreamgazer; given that we are aggro our opponent will probably be reluctant to use such cards (or if they do use them thats probably good for us too). Now sure, they can replace such cards but even in this case they have a bad card in their deck that they might draw/replace back into later on.
Finally, lets consider what we might steal; we might get something powerful (like Makantor), or maybe we steal an answer to Mechazor (e.g Sunset Paragon), or maybe we otherwise just draw a decent body to curve out with (e.g post Mechazor, Silverguard Knight is better than 90% of our deck).
In short, I feel that Joseki isn’t a bad card for decks that are low curve (relative to the meta) and/or just have a bunch of junk cards our opponent cannot use effectively (eg Mechs).
Its a Mech deck.
If you win, nobody will tip you and your mother will disown you.
Its a Mech deck.
Less mechs, more tech, alternate win-conditions…
The Big Idea:
Arcanyst Hai has actually been a deck in the past, so with the new expansion it is highly likely Arc Hai is going to be a thing we see a lot of in the coming meta.
The difficulty we have now is knowing (a) What Arcanysts to run (unlike before, there are a lot to choose from!) and (b) what ratio of spells-to-minions do we go for; A low spell count but high minion count potentially means we struggle to proc dudes, meanwhile, a high spell count with few minions risks having nothing to buff.
Without cards like Kindling, our snowball boards can get rekt by shit like Plasmastorm.
This version doesn’t really ‘go nuts’ with Arcanysts, we only have two snowball cards (e.g. Owlbeast, Illusionist).
Its songhai, therefore bullshit is always possible.
This archetype can be built in a variety of different ways, so yeah, have fun experimenting.
SWARM CREEP HYBRID
The Big Idea:
So this super weird looking deck is built around the idea that Nocturne gives us new ways to generate creep. In the past, creep has usually been a Cass thing (notably because the BBS generates creep), but now, all thanks to Nocturne, Lilthe has a higher creep potential than Cass.
Imagine we get the dream; we get a good swarm start and we drop a bloodmoon 1-2turns later. Now those 1/1’s represent a whole lotta Creep with Nocturne or a whole lotta damage with DFC; in some cases we might get lucky enough to get both!
Consider the simple case where we play:
Nocturne –> BBS – > Cryptograher – > BBS
^ That’s 6 mana for 4x creep and 4x 1/1’s. Not bad eh? If only Cass could get Creep that fast
Moreover, our Keliano probably represents more healing than it does in Cass (because bloodmoon). Overall, I think its a pretty interesting idea. Will it work? Who knows…
If we don’t draw Nocturne, our Creep package blows.
Current list lacks removal.
Low curve, very reliant on drawing Rite.
Very Diverse set of threats (creep AND swarm).
As a hybrid deck you can always tinker with the ratio of creep-to-swarm. Fuck it, why not add Variax as well?
The Big Idea:
Note, as of building this only 2 vanar cards have been revealed
Okay, so this deck is rather spell heavy and we want to try and win by getting a shit tonne of tempo from playing Ghost + Big Spell on seven Mana.
There a few subtle points I should make about this deck, most notably is the inclusion of Vespyric call. Not only is this a cheap little thing that allows us to proc Circulus the real reason for its inclusion is much more cunning than that. Basically, if you look at the Vespyr’s it can call a lot of them cost about 2 mana post reduction. What does this mean? Well it potentially means that on 9 mana we can do crazy shit like:
Ghost – > Snow Rippler (4 attack, 2 mana) – > Spirit of the wild.
^ thats 12 burst + card.
If get a cloaker, we can do even more damage:
Ghost –> Cloaker (5 atk, 1 mana) – > Spirit – > BBS
^ 15 burst.
And finally, if we get Artic displacer thats a 9 mana 11 dmg combo.
Another card we are running that you don’t normally see is Cryogensis. This is basically here because for Ghost to be powerful we need to have a good hand size AND spells to play when we get there. Cryo is thus duel-purpose; it keeps the hand size high and provides good tempo swings when we have the mana to play Ghost.
Low minion count
Weak early game
Relies on BBS and spirit combos to actually win games.
Good removal package.
Lots of cycle
Powerful lategame tempo plays.
We could do lots of things to spruce this deck up. Give it a better early game, convert it to an arcanyst deck, Fix some of its glaring weaknesses. etc etc