Having Trouble Playing Against Mages? Read

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Posts: 12,345
01/06/2014 08:34 AMPosted by AshVandal
Hey Sar, I found this on Hearthpwn recently and it goes into what you're trying to get across in this thread. I wanted to post it on your thread so it's all neatly collected in the official forums. Since the back pages rarely get read except by people arguing and trolling I feel like it's a fairly safe place to put it temporarily. Give it a read and see if you'd like to edit your OP with the info or a link to the article. If not, just get this post deleted by a mod, I won't mind.

http://www.hearthpwn.com/forums/managrind/articles/3929-countering-ignore-the-board-mage-part-1-2

EDIT: Hahaha, nevermind, you wrote that article. Is a better article than your forum post here. :)
YUNO LINKS?


Yeah, I wrote it, but it was published several weeks after I wrote this post. To not look like I'm just trying to advertise a hearthpwn document, I've been linking to this post instead. The jist of that article and this post is the same, but the article goes into more details.
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MVP - Hearthstone
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There may have been a miscommunication here; I've been under the impression we've been talking about countering direct damage in the form of hero damage, not minion removal (which is why I've been talking about hero health). This basically all stems from some players complaints that there's no method to counter direct damage to the hero; the point being that healing IS a counter to direct damage to the hero.

You are correct about it in the case of these spells being used as minions removal.


Why does it matter if we're talking about minions or about heroes?


Because tons of people keep erroneously saying that there's no counter to a Fireball to the face. Which is why I'm responding that there is a counter to Fireball to the face. I'm not sure how this is unambiguous, I keep saying that's what I'm answering over and over.

Why am I not focusing on that healing doesn't counter a Fireball on a minion? Because Fireball does 6 damage to a minion for 4 mana, which will kill any minion with 6 health (without Divine Shield) or less; for one more mana, Assassinate (the baseline card for removal spell) will kill ANY minion, such that anything with a Divine Shield or more than 6 health can more easily be removed by Assassinate.

It's not that healing counters this, it's just that using a Fireball in this fashion isn't very efficient. It's like asking "How do you counter a Rogue from killing my Silver Hand Recruit with a Backstab?" You don't... but it's a fairly inefficient use of Backstab.

And no, a card that can be used two different ways can have 2 different hard counters. For example, what if someone asks, "How do I deal with Druid of the Claw?" Well, that depends; are you talking about Druid of the Claw charge form or taunt form? In charge form, you counter it with a taunt minion; in taunt form, you counter it with a removal card (or a big minion killing it). By the logic you're presenting here, your response to this question would have to be, "There's NO method of countering Druid of the Claw because each use of it has a different counter. Therefore, the card must be removed from the game because there's absolutely no method to deal with it." Which is, of course, ridiculous. But that's exactly the same argument you're making with the two uses of Fireball (hero vs. minion), that because each use has a different counter that the card doesn't have a counter.
Edited by Sar on 1/7/2014 11:44 AM PST
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01/05/2014 08:30 PMPosted by Cheezzhead


How did you get your MVP title, in the local raffle lottery?

The answer is to why I'm an MVP (and by implication in your question, that you're not) is because I understand these higher-level concepts in Hearthstone (and by implication of your statements, you don't understand them). I'm here to donate my time to help newer players understand these aspects of the game.

By the way, just to share some credentials, since you probably view me as just some random person. I've won the Managrind tournament twice, once as a Paladin and once as a Warlock. I was also their shoutcaster for their tournaments for a long time. I've been on two top 50 Blizzard lists, playing as a Priest and Shaman. I'm also up to almost 6k gold from my success in Arena (I like constructed and Arena, but prefer Arena). In essence, I've had quantifiable success as a player split amongst a wide array of classes in the game. I may not be the only player with these qualifications, and I'm certainly not the only player who has comparable qualifications than these, but I do promise you that I'm far more experienced, knowledgeable, and successful in the game than 99.99% of the population, who would not be able to come close to these qualifications. If you put me up to another experienced and high-level player like Kithros, I may not be able to say the the situation is the same in comparison than him, but I can promise you it's true to basically anyone you see on the forums.

There's no way to say something like this without sounding condescending, but the bottom line is, I understand the game better than you, and such simplistic concepts of "I need counter-spell to counter an ability" is a very elementary way of thinking of the game; and you're unlikely to be a high-end player without understanding that. The problem is that many players think of concepts in Hearthstone like they would think of it in MTG; but Hearthstone isn't MTG, it has a different set of rules and abilities available to you.

If counterplay didn't exist, then there would be one best deck out there, and no one would be able to beat it. This blatantly is not the case if you watch what decks are winning though; there are tons of decks that are winning. The problem is that counterplay DOES exist, but many newer players don't understand how counterplay works in Hearthstone. You can keep denying it if you want, but the end result is that you'll be stuck below a certain skill ceiling if you keep denying it exists.

As I've told people many times in this forum, and still stand by. Most players come to the forum not looking to improve their skill in the game; rather, they're just looking to complain about why they lost. In other words, they view themselves as perfect, so if they lost a game, it couldn't POSSIBLY be their own fault, it must be the fault of something else in the game (most likely the rules). But that's obviously not true; both players are subjected to an IDENTICAL set of rules, and while you may occasionally lose a game from bad RNG (it happens), if you're consistently losing, it's something your opponent is doing that YOU are not.

So a person can either figure out what they're doing wrong and fix it, but they won't be able to complain any more on the forums because they'll realize how well balanced the game is. OR, they can keep doing the same thing over and over, refuse to change anything, refuse to improve as a player, and then keep coming back to the forums complaining. It's a matter of which you want to be.

So to go back to your question, why am I an MVP? Because I 1) know far more than you, and 2) am willing to share this information even against the stream of whiners who attack me personally for doing it.
Edited by Sar on 1/7/2014 12:01 PM PST
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Posts: 469
01/07/2014 11:57 AMPosted by Sar


How did you get your MVP title, in the local raffle lottery?

The answer is to why I'm an MVP (and by implication in your question, that you're not) is because I understand these higher-level concepts in Hearthstone (and by implication of your statements, you don't understand them). I'm here to donate my time to help newer players understand these aspects of the game.

By the way, just to share some credentials, since you probably view me as just some random person. I've won the Managrind tournament twice, once as a Paladin and once as a Warlock. I was also their shoutcaster for their tournaments for a long time. I've been on two top 50 Blizzard lists, playing as a Priest and Shaman. I'm also up to almost 6k gold from my success in Arena (I like constructed and Arena, but prefer Arena). In essence, I've had quantifiable success as a player split amongst a wide array of classes in the game. I may not be the only player with these qualifications, and I'm certainly not the only player who has comparable qualifications than these, but I do promise you that I'm far more experienced, knowledgeable, and successful in the game than 99.99% of the population, who would not be able to come close to these qualifications. If you put me up to another experienced and high-level player like Kithros, I may not be able to say the the situation is the same in comparison than him, but I can promise you it's true to basically anyone you see on the forums.

There's no way to say something like this without sounding condescending, but the bottom line is, I understand the game better than you, and such simplistic concepts of "I need counter-spell to counter an ability" is a very elementary way of thinking of the game; and you're unlikely to be a high-end player without understanding that. The problem is that many players think of concepts in Hearthstone like they would think of it in MTG; but Hearthstone isn't MTG, it has a different set of rules and abilities available to you.

If counterplay didn't exist, then there would be one best deck out there, and no one would be able to beat it. This blatantly is not the case if you watch what decks are winning though; there are tons of decks that are winning. The problem is that counterplay DOES exist, but many newer players don't understand how counterplay works in Hearthstone. You can keep denying it if you want, but the end result is that you'll be stuck below a certain skill ceiling if you keep denying it exists.

As I've told people many times in this forum, and still stand by. Most players come to the forum not looking to improve their skill in the game; rather, they're just looking to complain about why they lost. In other words, they view themselves as perfect, so if they lost a game, it couldn't POSSIBLY be their own fault, it must be the fault of something else in the game (most likely the rules). But that's obviously not true; both players are subjected to an IDENTICAL set of rules, and while you may occasionally lose a game from bad RNG (it happens), if you're consistently losing, it's something your opponent is doing that YOU are not.

So a person can either figure out what they're doing wrong and fix it, but they won't be able to complain any more on the forums because they'll realize how well balanced the game is. OR, they can keep doing the same thing over and over, refuse to change anything, refuse to improve as a player, and then keep coming back to the forums complaining. It's a matter of which you want to be.

So to go back to your question, why am I an MVP? Because I 1) know far more than you, and 2) am willing to share this information even against the stream of whiners who attack me personally for doing it.


This was an amazing post and as eloquent and polite as it could possibly be. I'm only sorry most people will never see it for the insightful post that it is.
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Posts: 644
Sar,

Much enjoyed this post. Thanks for writing it. Internet forums, especially ones about electronic games, have a high d-bag quotient, but a lot of people appreciating the post aren't commenting to say thanks, but are gaining from it.

Without disparaging the advice you've given, I will say that I share everyone else's concern about the healing deck vs everything non-mage. Most of the heal minions, unfortunately, are inferior to similar mana cost minions, so against non-mages, you're giving up board control - those heal minions also don't buff, charge, or do other useful things.

I mean, specifically, your guardian of kings, darkscale healer, etc will have to face beefier opponents and will presumably lose those fights. Possibly you can still have a good deck even giving away a few stat points on these guys, but I don't know. I mean, it's better than Holy Light, for sure.
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Posts: 226
I still don't get some of your logic though. Here's a quote from your other article:
Without spell power, Cone of Cold is unlikely to kill anything (and if you’re swarming the board with large numbers of small minions, you can actually cause multiple minions to be left unfrozen)
This is just a downright fallacy; CoC can easily kill weakened minions, and even though you say to put large minions on the outside, mages tend to kill the weaker minions first and either poly or slowly whittle down the other minions. CoC is a hugely powerful spell and it can easily wipe the board on turn 3 or 4, or be a huge swing in late game.

I appreciate the fact you are trying to help people, but the classes you've played are either healing classes (paladin, priest) or classes with direct damage (lock, shaman) that can counteract a mage's DD and CC. I've seen people like you in tournements who love to run the trendy decks and never understand why people complain about losing to the elite decks. Because some people don't like playing the same deck 99% of the population is playing. I don't expect you to get that. I just hope you understand mage is harder to beat then you think it is. Not saying it's broken, but their synergy works a lot better in constructed and arena. And their Hero ability is probably one of the best in the game.
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Posts: 200

The answer is to why I'm an MVP (and by implication in your question, that you're not) is because I understand these higher-level concepts in Hearthstone (and by implication of your statements, you don't understand them). I'm here to donate my time to help newer players understand these aspects of the game.

By the way, just to share some credentials, since you probably view me as just some random person. I've won the Managrind tournament twice, once as a Paladin and once as a Warlock. I was also their shoutcaster for their tournaments for a long time. I've been on two top 50 Blizzard lists, playing as a Priest and Shaman. I'm also up to almost 6k gold from my success in Arena (I like constructed and Arena, but prefer Arena). In essence, I've had quantifiable success as a player split amongst a wide array of classes in the game. I may not be the only player with these qualifications, and I'm certainly not the only player who has comparable qualifications than these, but I do promise you that I'm far more experienced, knowledgeable, and successful in the game than 99.99% of the population, who would not be able to come close to these qualifications. If you put me up to another experienced and high-level player like Kithros, I may not be able to say the the situation is the same in comparison than him, but I can promise you it's true to basically anyone you see on the forums.

There's no way to say something like this without sounding condescending, but the bottom line is, I understand the game better than you, and such simplistic concepts of "I need counter-spell to counter an ability" is a very elementary way of thinking of the game; and you're unlikely to be a high-end player without understanding that. The problem is that many players think of concepts in Hearthstone like they would think of it in MTG; but Hearthstone isn't MTG, it has a different set of rules and abilities available to you.

If counterplay didn't exist, then there would be one best deck out there, and no one would be able to beat it. This blatantly is not the case if you watch what decks are winning though; there are tons of decks that are winning. The problem is that counterplay DOES exist, but many newer players don't understand how counterplay works in Hearthstone. You can keep denying it if you want, but the end result is that you'll be stuck below a certain skill ceiling if you keep denying it exists.

As I've told people many times in this forum, and still stand by. Most players come to the forum not looking to improve their skill in the game; rather, they're just looking to complain about why they lost. In other words, they view themselves as perfect, so if they lost a game, it couldn't POSSIBLY be their own fault, it must be the fault of something else in the game (most likely the rules). But that's obviously not true; both players are subjected to an IDENTICAL set of rules, and while you may occasionally lose a game from bad RNG (it happens), if you're consistently losing, it's something your opponent is doing that YOU are not.

So a person can either figure out what they're doing wrong and fix it, but they won't be able to complain any more on the forums because they'll realize how well balanced the game is. OR, they can keep doing the same thing over and over, refuse to change anything, refuse to improve as a player, and then keep coming back to the forums complaining. It's a matter of which you want to be.

So to go back to your question, why am I an MVP? Because I 1) know far more than you, and 2) am willing to share this information even against the stream of whiners who attack me personally for doing it.


Well, it's nice to see that you can dedicate an entire page's length of paragraphs to detail your MVP-state, despite continuous claims that you want to keep this thread on-topic. I think most people would've ignored that off-handed, half-serious last sentence I made; you made an essay about it. Anyway.

I've already said that I appreciate you making this post, and I don't think I've made any attempt at 'whining', as you so eloquently put it. My first post was about 4 particular points in your original post, as well as a few other arguments made in this thread, and how I disagreed with them. Two of which you ignored, by the way. After that, I delved further into the 'healing as a counter' debate, and I'm pretty sure you started with the condescending tones. But alas, tones are so hard to distinguish in text-form.

If you think I came off as 'whiny', I can assure you I do fine against mages. Not exceptional, but fine. Here's my statistics since the new rankings went live: http://i.imgur.com/QXOnVqw.png

As it turns out, people can actually disapprove of something without having a secret agenda of continuous nerfs! I know it's hard to accept. Sometimes, you see these hundreds of ragetopics and it becomes hard to see anything else.

As for your barrage of achievements and titles; well done! But if you've achieved all of that, why do you still feel the need to splatter your posts with a distinguishing color? If you feel you should be green in order for people to read your posts, what might we deduce about the content of them?

And we can extend this further to the topic here. From the topic it indeed sounds like you're just trying to help people in playing against a mage, and I'm sure that's what you intend. But while reading the topic and your subsequent posts, I can't help but notice your defensive stance. It's almost like you're trying to defend the mage, saying "I'm playing it, but no it's not OP. I'm not a bandwagoner. Here's why'. Apparently, It's not so much about defending the mage-class, it's about defending your choice of playing the mage-class.
Edited by Cheezzhead on 1/8/2014 4:52 AM PST
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A monkey could play a mage and win, nuf said.
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This still does not fix the problem. My deck is absolutely great! It competes well with many decks that have many legondaries, of all classes. It even beats priests a fair amount of the time. But I can not beat a Mage. I literally just last game, played a mage with 0 legondaries, He double pyroblasted me, took me down to 2 hp. Then, I used my Lord Jaraxxus. Then I was totally ahead. Game was mine from then on in. Pulling infernal after infernal. And with 3 cards. He killed me. I would have gamed him next turn. He kept 2 fireballs and and a frostbolt. I can't explain it. Priests, it's either one sided or competitive. Mages, I can't beat them. Everyone elses cards dictate where they attack and limit the cards power, but not a mage's. No. They get 40+ guaranteed damage to anything. Heal for what? 3? 2? Won't matter. What and take away all the reason to use a Warlock deck? I had 15 extra damage and he wrecked me. No matter how good my hand is. Pyro set to 10 with a limit of 1,Fireball can only attack minions, or everybody else gg.
Edited by Shakeyhands on 1/10/2014 1:13 AM PST
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Posts: 465
5) Shaman. I know there are some anti-mage variants floating around, but I don't really know the details on how they work.

Hey Sar, this doesn't cut it for me. How do i heal vs mages?:D With voodoo doctors? Lol.
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MVP - Hearthstone
Posts: 12,345
01/10/2014 03:30 AMPosted by Demolition
5) Shaman. I know there are some anti-mage variants floating around, but I don't really know the details on how they work.

Hey Sar, this doesn't cut it for me. How do i heal vs mages?:D With voodoo doctors? Lol.


To the best of my knowledge, Shaman is a weak matchup against Mage. Sorry that there's no more to it than that. It's just like Druid is a weak matchup against Priest; not all the class matchups are equal.

01/10/2014 01:12 AMPosted by Shakeyhands
This still does not fix the problem. My deck is absolutely great! It competes well with many decks that have many legondaries, of all classes. It even beats priests a fair amount of the time. But I can not beat a Mage. I literally just last game, played a mage with 0 legondaries, He double pyroblasted me, took me down to 2 hp. Then, I used my Lord Jaraxxus. Then I was totally ahead. Game was mine from then on in. Pulling infernal after infernal. And with 3 cards. He killed me. I would have gamed him next turn. He kept 2 fireballs and and a frostbolt. I can't explain it. Priests, it's either one sided or competitive. Mages, I can't beat them. Everyone elses cards dictate where they attack and limit the cards power, but not a mage's. No. They get 40+ guaranteed damage to anything. Heal for what? 3? 2? Won't matter. What and take away all the reason to use a Warlock deck? I had 15 extra damage and he wrecked me. No matter how good my hand is. Pyro set to 10 with a limit of 1,Fireball can only attack minions, or everybody else gg.


Try playing a Warlock rush deck. I myself really like Warlock end-game, but in the end, Warlock rush is better against a much more wide array of decks, including mage. That's why you don't see many Warlock end-game decks.

Understand that while almost all classes are basically equal (it's arguable that Hunter and Priest are too weak) that not all decks are equal. There are certain deck variants for a certain class that are better than other variants for that same class. Sorry that that's the case, but it is; it's a common thing in card games. I know Jaraxxus is a fun card to pound newbs with (since they don't know how to handle it), but the decks that he's effective in are by and large not effective decks.
Edited by Sar on 1/10/2014 6:43 AM PST
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Posts: 1,906
One thing I've found is that you can reduce the total damage a mage can do with spells by giving them targets for fireballs/frostbolts etc
worgen is a frostbolt magnet, so it's almost like healing for 3 health, if it doesn't get polymorphed or frozen in preparation for a flamestrike later on.

brewmasters can be used to get extra healing from replaying battlecry healing cards

Lorewalker cho is a nice card
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Posts: 68
12/22/2013 08:49 PMPosted by UMCorian
Honestly, I'm 80% sure you actually are trying to be helpful - you're just woefully out of touch. You're sitting there saying: "Gee... if I weren't a Mage Player, how would I beat myself?"... and you come up with a Pure Anti-Mage deck that, if you actually played the class in question, you'd realize you're trading a slim chance to beat a mage for a reasonable chance to beat one... at the cost of making yourself a huge underdog against any other non-mage class.

Healing vs any non-Mage deck is a Lose Slower card - if you're winning, it doesn't help you at all. If you're losing, it's not going to help you regain any tempo - you're just going to lose slower.


^ Thisssssssss
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Posts: 179
UMCorian makes some really good points, the fact that people are playing healing classes and that shamans are as rare to play against as hunters is caused only by the existence of Mage class (for 100 last games i played against 4 shamans, 5 hunters and around 20 mages)
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01/12/2014 04:42 AMPosted by MissMaven
Honestly, I'm 80% sure you actually are trying to be helpful - you're just woefully out of touch. You're sitting there saying: "Gee... if I weren't a Mage Player, how would I beat myself?"... and you come up with a Pure Anti-Mage deck that, if you actually played the class in question, you'd realize you're trading a slim chance to beat a mage for a reasonable chance to beat one... at the cost of making yourself a huge underdog against any other non-mage class.

Healing vs any non-Mage deck is a Lose Slower card - if you're winning, it doesn't help you at all. If you're losing, it's not going to help you regain any tempo - you're just going to lose slower.


^ Thisssssssss


Definitely This
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Posts: 389
Sar still not banned? This forum warrior's job is to defend mages 24/7 on this forum , what do you expect from him to acknowlage that mage needs a fix?
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Posts: 179
A lot of good players actually defend mage cuz it's the most fun class to play with and win in quite consistent manner, if all classes were balanced then getting to top ranks would be more based on luck rather than game knowledge (and realizing that mage is still one of the best classes post-nerf is game knowledge)
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Posts: 96
01/12/2014 05:20 AMPosted by Orkhepaj
Sar still not banned? This forum warrior's job is to defend mages 24/7 on this forum , what do you expect from him to acknowlage that mage needs a fix?


Well no, he is a MVP so clearly he knows more about the game then we do ;)

Just lost to another mage. His board stayed 100% cleared the whole game but my board was locked down most of the game and direct damage spells killed me.....this is what always happens.

All this game is right now is rush decks. So boring to play. No skill required right now.
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Posts: 46
Sar I am sorry, but no matter how hard I try, no matter what, I do I loose 99 % games vs mages.
Ive read your guide and it simply doesnt work.... No matter what minion i play its either get killed or frozen or polymorphed. Its not possible to get board control in early game vs mage. Mirror image, explosion, arcane missile and frostbolt are more than enough to win the board, Its like a snowball - at first they just stop my minions then, with more mana they play all those minions which reduce spell cost and its game over. Charge minions are only solution but they have low hp so flamestrikes counters them heavily. Mage spells are just too good, Uve said that healing spells are more effective - problem is to use them u actually need something that can be healed... Its not possible to kill a mage in first 6 turns. Turn 6 means blizzard and then turn 7 - flamestrike, ofc if they didnt save a coin. Mages just laugh at my face, Its broken class, I just wonder if ever they going to fix it.
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Posts: 507
The class is obviously getting nurfed. It's just a matter of when.
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