What does control look like?

Posts: 915
The Warrior was the first library I completed. I started testing other classes and found them more to my liking at the time being. That was back in November. I'm interested in trying them out again and I'm wondering what a Warrior Control deck looks like now.
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Posts: 256
The core idea is the same as any control - stack spells and card draw until you can get your winning condition out. In current situation, this generally means the following setup:

1/2 Execute
2 Shield Slam
1/2 Slam
2 Inner Rage or 2 Cruel Taskmaster (depending on whether you need a body on the board or reduced mana cost)
2 Acolyte of Pain (usually the best source of cards when combined with taskmasters, whirlwind, slam)
2 Armorsmith (best comboed with acolytes and whirlwind)
2 Fiery War Axe
1/2 Brawl (1 is usually fine, unless you're extra paranoid)
2 Shield Block

On top of that core, you add heavier stuff. The most common win condition is Alexstraza + Grom + Inner Rage. Having a Gorehowl in hands also helps, naturally.

Additional win conditions include Ysera and Ragnaros. Support/bullet magnet roles are usually given to Cairne and Sylvanas. Add utilitarian cards like Tinkmaster and Black Knight for those situations when you need to clear the board of huge threats, and you're all set.

The rest of the slots differ wildly from deck to deck. Faceless Manipulator is an awesome card to have, for obvious reasons. Some players prefer adding Mortal Strikes for additional direct damage/removal. Bloodmage Thalnos + Whirlwind is not a bad combo to clear the board of a bunch of weak creatures.

I saw decks with double Arathi Weaponsmith and Cleave just to help you survive the earlier phase, but haven't tried that kind of setup myself. Others use additional means of draw, like Azure Drake and Gadgetzan Auctioneer, to get Alexstraza and Grom sooner.
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Well I've got Grom, Alex, Rag, and Cairne, so I'm good on that front. I assume however that I need board presence other than legendaries. So what kind of numbers am I looking for in minion count? Is taunt a factor of importance in this deck. My Mage control ignores it altogether but these are two radically different beasts.

Also for card draw would Wild Pyromancer, Acolyte of Pain, and Commanding Shout work as a combination, or is that to man imponderables and too heavy in the card slot count?
Edited by Peripatetic on 2/25/2014 12:53 AM PST
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Posts: 256
Taunt is a complicated issue. I had enough time to try both approaches - first spell- and charge-heavy deck which featured double mortal strike and kor'kron elites as additional means of removal, but no other serious threats aside from legendaries (obviously not taking into account utility creatures like acolytes). It got me as high as rank 6, but people with something simple like Faery dragons or a decent amount of medium-strength creatures (including defenders of argus and divine shield) would outplay me.

Then I switched to double Argus and double Yeti, and it let me use Gorehowl a little more freely (since I could protect myself against minion spam in mid game), but I had to give up Mortal Strikes which are a great way of dispatching an enemy near-death. Won some, lost some, rank didn't change much.

From this I conclude that both ways are viable, and you should probably make your judgment according to the current meta and the decks you encounter the most. Maybe players with more experience and better skills than me will give additional advice.

Also for card draw would Wild Pyromancer, Acolyte of Pain, and Commanding Shout work as a combination, or is that to man imponderables and too heavy in the card slot count?


I think Wild Pyro might work instead of Whirlwind or even together with Whirlwind to give better results. Commanding Shout, though? Not sure you need it, since creatures are usually only used to go for the face, while spells are reserved for removal. And if you need a way to shuffle through your deck faster, Azure Drakes might be preferable.

Then again, worth a try, but keep in mind that double Acolyte + Whirlwind + double Shield Block will give you a sufficient enough draw that you might run out of cards much faster than your opponent, which will inevitably lead to fatigue. Not an uncommon hazard in control decks.
Edited by Phoenix on 2/25/2014 1:04 AM PST
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Posts: 915
Would you mind sharing the Kor'kron deck, I'm sure I'll have my own sort of home-brew mix on it but I'd like a place to start if you don't mind.
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Posts: 256
02/25/2014 07:24 AMPosted by Peripatetic
Would you mind sharing the Kor'kron deck, I'm sure I'll have my own sort of home-brew mix on it but I'd like a place to start if you don't mind.


Yeah, absolutely. It's a fairly typical design, really. Hope you'll have some luck with it:

2x Execute
2x Shield Slam
2x Whirlwind
2x Fiery War Axe
2x Slam
2x Armorsmith
1x Bloodmage Thalnos
2x Cruel Taskmaster
2x Shield Block
2x Acolyte of Pain
1x Tinkmaster Overspark
2x Mortal Strike
2x Kor'Kron Elite
1x Brawl
1x Cairne Bloodhoof
1x Black Knight
1x Grommash Hellscream
1x Ragnaros the Firelord
1x Alexstrasza

I'd probably replace Thalnos with Ysera if I had it, and the lack of taunts doesn't let me use Gorehowl since I'm usually at too low health by that point. Also, double Slam is versatile but questionable. At one time, it lets you kill Yetis with Thalnos + Slam + Whirlwind, at other time it sits in your hand while you die at hands (jaws?) of fairy dragons.

Don't forget to share your ideas with your brothers in arms if you find better combos and interesting tactics. I (and many other readers of the warrior forum, I'm sure) will greatly appreciate any advice and thoughts.
Edited by Phoenix on 2/25/2014 8:54 AM PST
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Posts: 915
Alright here's what I've come up with, and I managed to sneak three games during my lunch break today. I won two and lost one. The one I lost, my brawl got baited out, and I got midgame board swarmed by a Shaman so I wasn't too surprised when I lost.

Minions
Armorsmith – 2
Cruel Taskmaster – 2
Acolyte of Pain – 2
Arathi Weaponsmith – 2
Kor'Kron Elite – 2
Cairne Bloodhoof – 1
Grommash Hellscream – 1
Ragnaros the Firelord – 1
Alexstrasza – 1

Spells
Execute – 2
Shield Slam – 2
Upgrade – 2
Whirlwind – 2
Shield Block – 2
Mortal Strike – 2
Brawl – 1

Weapons
Fiery War Axe – 2
Gorehowl – 1

I don't have too many thoughts as I'm reserving judgment for more games. Initial impressions, so far I've been able to control the game till about turn 7. Around that time one of us breaks it open. So surprisingly I've been able to equip Gorehowl in two of the three games. I've also been able to field every legendary at least once.

There has only been one thing that has bothered me about the deck so far. The Arathi Weaponsmith, while not a true tempo killer, does tend to feel like a dead play. Sure the axe is nice to have and if I hit it with an Upgrade it's very nice, but it's not always playable. First it competes with the Kor'Kron which tends to get more work done in the first place. Second with three legitimate Axes on the board there are plenty of times I don't play the Arathi because I want to get the full durability out of the axe at hand. Thirdly, on the other side of the coin I've had to lose a better axe to play the Arathi in a situation where I desperately needed a minion. Is it one too many axes, and if so could Upgrade fill the damage gap lost if I cut it the Weaponsmith. I think it could, undoubtedly it could if I'm lucky enough to cast it on Gorehowl.

My thoughts are this. My Mage control deck doesn't have a single taunt in it. I rely on threat of what the card can do or become to work as my taunt. And, if for some reason they can't get rid of it in one turn the free damage is appreciated.

I'm seeing parallels and wondering if the same could apply here. Acolyte of Pain always gets targeted for good reason. They have to get rid of it and it's better if I only get one card rather than two or three. Armorsmith gives people fits as they try to figure out the best way to give me as little armor as possible. With those two I was thinking Frothing Berserker might be a good addition. I already have minions that synergies with damage. This way regardless of what they target I get something: armor, attack, or cards. Also people go to great lengths to get rid of the Berserker, four life is nothing to sneer at, and if I have other minions on the field I'm powering up my shield slam, or pulling Grom.

Anyway open to opinions or options I haven't considered or tested yet.

In an effort to try and share the wealth I had an idea. Unfortunately, I had it a week too late for myself. As I said above I can usually make it to turn 7 easily in control and with a stack of armor. What if you put Baron Geddon in the deck. At turn seven you could drop him. Our armor up ability would negate the damage dealt to Garrosh and his 2 damage board hit takes away all small creatures and set up any large creatures for execute or an axe to the face. Also not to mention he's no wimp when it comes to straight up combat damage. Has anyone thought of or tried this out, if it worked Geddon might actually be a useful legendary.
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Posts: 1,462
Sorry in advance - this is long.

So I've been running warrior control all season (rank 1 atm, making push to legendary tonight), so I've tried a lot of different variants. This is what works for me, but understand at whatever player level you're playing against, you may want to tailor your deck a bit that suits what you play against most.
Here's my list:

Minions:
2x Armorsmith
2x Cruel Taskmaster
1x Nat Pagle
2x Acolyte of Pain
2x Frothing Berserker
1x Tinkmaster Overspark
1x Cairne Bloodhoof
1x Baron Geddon
1x Ragnaros
1x Grommash Hellscream
1x Alexstraza
1x Onyxia

Spells:
2x Whirlwind
2x Execute
2x Shield Slam
2x Slam
2x Shield Block
1x Brawl

Weapons:
2x Fiery War Axe
1x Gorehowl

There are a few things about your deck that can cause issues:
1) Too weapon heavy. Most control warriors don't run Arathi Weaponsmiths and Upgrades haven't been run in Control Warrior since last patch with OTK Warrior. I suggest cutting these 4 cards, because as you said it can cause a lot of bloat in your hand trying to use all the charges. It's much better going lighter on the weapons, and using the charges more optimally.
2) Somewhat light on win-conditions. The reason warrior control decks are usually so legendary heavy is that we don't have an aggressive hero power and our spells don't offer much reach aside from Mortal Strike (which is pretty poor value for a control deck). You have Cairne, Rag, Grommash and Alex, but against another control deck they'll generally have enough answers for those guys and your other minions don't really give you any bite. Imagine playing a shaman - Cairne will get Earth Shocked, he'll have 2 hexes for Rag/Grom/Alex, and all he needs is one Tink or BGH or just 2 for 1 against another legendary. My version runs 6 lategame threats, and Frothings also sometimes bait premium removal.
3) Mix between aggressive and control. Kind of a summary, but you have some cards that resemble a control deck like your high end legendaries and Shield Slam/Execute as hard removal, but then you also have cards seen in aggressive decks like Mortal Strike, Kork'ron Elite, Arathi Weaponsmith and Upgrade. Although it may seem like this makes the deck more "well-rounded", it's usually better to go for a plan or theme of the deck, so your cards have more synergy.
4) Light on card draw. You really only have the Acolytes and Shield Block. If you have Nat, he fits right in as this is a control deck and Slam is overall an excellent card and also strengths you against aggro.

Proposed Changes:
1) Cut the fat. Drop the weaponsmiths, upgrades, Mortal Strikes, Kork'ron Elites. This gives you 8 cards to play with.
2) Decide whether you want to go for more midgame pressure or be pure lategame. My build is pure lategame, as the only midgame minion I use are Frothings, but I really use those more often to strengthen my board vs aggro and to hopefully bait removal vs control. It seems like the European flavor is to go with more midgame pressure while the pure lategame is more popular on NA. I've tried both styles, each have their merits. If you lack some of the legendaries that I'll list later, the midgame variant is lighter on legendaries.
2a) Midgame cards to consider: Frothing Berserkers, Chillwind Yeti, Twilight Drake, Defender of Argus, Black Knight, Sen'jin Shieldmasta (vs aggro) are probably the most popular additions. Spiteful Smith, Stampeding Kodo, Venture Co Merc or Mind Control Tech are also interesting cards that you could try out.
2b) Lategame cards to consider: Gorehowl, Grommash, Rag, Alexstraza, Ysera, Onyxia, Baron Geddon, Deathwing, Cairne, Sylvanas, Black Knight, Boulderfist Ogre (budget option, but 100% viable), Faceless Manipulator.
3) Which legendaries? If you are midgame focused, I'd say you want to run 4-5 of those cards listed in 2b. If you are lategame focused, I'd run 6-7 as you'll be lighter on midgame threats to draw removal.
3a) Just as a headstart, the staples in order of importance imo are: Grommash, Rag, Alexstraza, Cairne. If you have to pick 4, go with those 4 although even Alexstraza I've found not to be 100% necessary if you're running a midgame variant since you ideally will be widdling away health away in the midgame. I wouldn't run more than 2 9+ drops. Ysera is most common as a compliment in that slot to Alex, but I've actually found Onyxia to work much better as she puts 14 damage on the table and it's rare that your opponent can answer an 8/8 and all the 1/1s in a single turn, where any hard removal drops Ysera and she isn't as much as an immediate threat. Deathwing is also viable in this deck, but you definitely need to be fairly legendary heavy if you run him so you can be sure he can't be answered.
4) Summary: Get midgame focused or get lategame focused. Regardless, of those 8 slots free, I highly recommend 2 Frothings. 1-2 Slams, Nat and Tink if you have them. Just a quick word on Tink, but he's really the only way to efficiently deal with the popular Cairne.

The list I gave before is for a lategame focused build. Here's what I would change for a midgame variant.
-1 Execute - Less need for removal with more minions.
-1 Slam - Didn't want to cut, but it is a slight tempo loss being slightly behind the curve of damage/mana.
-1 Brawl - Same as Gorehowl
-1 Gorehowl - Gorehowl isn't needed for board control because you'll have more minions. Gorehowl is also pretty slow.
-1 Alexstraza (the idea is to have more pressure and deal more damage early so you don't need her help to take down health)
-1 Baron Geddon - More of a control card, which isn't needed now.
-1 Onyxia. Swapped for Ysera.
+2 Twilight Drakes - Yeti's are also popular in this slot, but I prefer these as they help bait out silences for some of your legendaries. This does weaken the matchup against shaman however.
+1 Defender of Argus - Really good with Twilight Drake, Cairne and Sylvanas
+1 Faceless Manipulator - Plenty of targets and works well with your cheap removal.
+1 Sylvanas - Solid threat especially when your overload the deck with silence targets.
+1 The Black Knight - With more midgame minions, you'll be facing more taunts.
+1 Ysera - Better than Onyxia here because you should be baiting out silences beforehand.
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Posts: 3
I did a bunch of playtesting with commanding shout today. I really really want to like it, but I feel it's super limited by the fact that if a minion is at 1 health, any damage technically dealt to it doesn't count for triggers. I managed to deal 7 damage to an acolyte in one turn, but you only draw 2 cards from it. You also only get buffs to your armor and to frothing berserker from damage taken by a minion before they reach 1 health. I still think it's a great card in control, especially since it 1 for 1's a card to your hand, and allows you to trade without losing your creature (like trading a Cairne into something without losing the battlecry for a turn), it just doesn't feel as amazing as it should.
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Posts: 1,462
Just pushed legend w/ my list.

DECKLIST: http://imgur.com/og86zFP
PROOF: http://imgur.com/xWQWOlt
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Posts: 915
02/26/2014 06:41 PMPosted by Simplexity
Just pushed legend w/ my list.

DECKLIST: http://imgur.com/og86zFP
PROOF: http://imgur.com/xWQWOlt

Congrats.

Thanks for all the help Phoenix and Simplexity.

It’s gratifying to see I was right about the damned if you do damned if you don’t damage procs. I slipped the Frothing Berserks in yesterday when I confirmed the Arathi is a tempo killer in this kind of deck.

Hum, well I don’t have the utility legendaries, I dusted Barron Geddon a little while back to craft Cairne, and I’ve never been lucky enough to pull Onyxia. Anyway, I’m going on vacation to Koh Phi Phi, Thailand in two days so the Legendaries will have to wait till my next paycheck. I do have the four essentials as you say. I guess I’ll have to go budget in the mean time with Bolderfist Ogres and Faceless Manipulators. I’m gonna guess rule of thumb applies and you only run one faceless manipulator?

I see your point about the late game. I did construct my deck in a fashion after my Mage control. I was right people reacted the same way to Warrior procs as they do to Mage procs. I did however overlook the glaring discrepancy of closing spell damage that a Mage has at it's disposal. While mortal strike can be brutal sometimes I don't want to have to to get in Pyroblast range in order to deal the real damage. Your right I need more muscle. That was certainly lacking in the first run deck.

Swapping Upgrade for Slam isn’t much of a wrench. I can’t stand it when decks play slow or dead, and I’ll take your word for it. Mortal Strike and Kor’Krons, ugh, I love those cards I really don’t want to get rid of them. I’d ask if there was a way to bridge gap between Mid and Late control but I can see that your way of bending the rule is the Frothing Berserkers. So this is the revamp till I pick up some of the other legendaries. I'm gonna try the budget version of the late game first.

Minions
Armorsmith
Cruel Taskmaster
Acolyte of Pain
Frothing Berserker
Faceless Manipulator
Boulderfist Ogre
Cairne Bloodhoof
Grommash Hellscream
Ragnaros, the Firelord
Alexstrasza

Spells
Execute
Shield Slam
Whirlwind
Slam
Shield Block
Brawl

Weapons
Fiery War Axe
Gorehowl

2X on everything but Manipulator, Gorehowl, and Legendaries. Please let me know about the Manipulator in the mean time I’m gonna go with as Phoenix put it “paranoia” and run a second Brawl.
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Posts: 1,462
Yeah looks much better imo. 2xBrawl isn't that common, but if you're not using Geddon it could work. Also, people tend to overcommit after they see the first Brawl, so that could also work in your favor.
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Posts: 915
02/26/2014 10:40 PMPosted by Simplexity
Yeah looks much better imo. 2xBrawl isn't that common, but if you're not using Geddon it could work. Also, people tend to overcommit after they see the first Brawl, so that could also work in your favor.

Yeah that has worked for me in the past. I wish I still had Geddon I just didn't know he was a piece in any relevant deck. I might look into him and Onyxia in the next few months but in the mean time I'll see how this pans.

I'll have to think about trying to bait people with the first brawl. Unlike flamestrike and some others your right people don't often expect a second one.
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Posts: 915
So.... played a few matches.... WOW!

Yeah keeping the second brawl, I never got that kind of control with my Druid deck and I had all the pieces for it. I absolutely dominated a couple of paladins and I had two games where my opponents surrendered on turn four because I had an Armorsmith and Frothing Berserker on the field. Finally Investing in warrior cards will pay off.

THANK YOU!
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Posts: 1,031
02/26/2014 12:57 PMPosted by Simplexity
1) Too weapon heavy. Most control warriors don't run Arathi Weaponsmiths and Upgrades haven't been run in Control Warrior since last patch with OTK Warrior. I suggest cutting these 4 cards, because as you said it can cause a lot of bloat in your hand trying to use all the charges. It's much better going lighter on the weapons, and using the charges more optimally.


Reasonable and sound advise, though I'd consider keeping 1 upgrade and 1 Arcanite Reaper along with the standard 2 Fiery War Axes in order to consistently remove your opponent's threats, since Warriors lack AoE clearing(Whirlwind+Thalnos combo aside) and aren't big on taunters either so you must be able to keep clearing your opponent's minions as they put them. Relying on chargers for 1:1 trades isn't ideal either, which is precisely where the weapon usage does come in and why you shouldn't drop it too much.

2) Somewhat light on win-conditions. The reason warrior control decks are usually so legendary heavy is that we don't have an aggressive hero power and our spells don't offer much reach aside from Mortal Strike (which is pretty poor value for a control deck). You have Cairne, Rag, Grommash and Alex, but against another control deck they'll generally have enough answers for those guys and your other minions don't really give you any bite. Imagine playing a shaman - Cairne will get Earth Shocked, he'll have 2 hexes for Rag/Grom/Alex, and all he needs is one Tink or BGH or just 2 for 1 against another legendary. My version runs 6 lategame threats, and Frothings also sometimes bait premium removal.


Here I completely disagree with you. Warrior control doesn't need more threats, in fact it needs less than what you're been talking about and more ways to control the board to make it to the late game in the first place. All Warrior control really needs is Alex+Grom combo, nothing else. Alex brings health down to 15, regardless of what it was, than the following turn you enrage Grom(preferably with a +2 and enrage card like Cruel Taskmaster or Inner Rage) for 12 damage, with the last 3 coming from either another minion on your board or from your weapon. This is obviously cutting it a bit close against classes with armor like fellow Warriors or Druids/Mages(well, their secrets), so against those you just need to make sure to either have another turn after you drop Grom or to have more than 3 damage on your board to compensate for his armor. Nothing your opponent can do about that since Grom has charge. Of course if he doesn't deal with Alex right after you drop him than you don't even need another minion/weapon on the board as Alex' 8 damage+Grom's 10-12 will be more than enough and will easily break said classes with armor potential. The only trouble will be Mages and their secret that prevents death, as that will really mess up your combo, but as long as you attack with Grom first than he won't have much life after you pop the secret with your weapon/other minion so as long as he doesn't kill you the following turn you should still be able to win easily.

3) Mix between aggressive and control. Kind of a summary, but you have some cards that resemble a control deck like your high end legendaries and Shield Slam/Execute as hard removal, but then you also have cards seen in aggressive decks like Mortal Strike, Kork'ron Elite, Arathi Weaponsmith and Upgrade. Although it may seem like this makes the deck more "well-rounded", it's usually better to go for a plan or theme of the deck, so your cards have more synergy.


Again, we're in agreement. Warrior isn't very good at mid-range so its best to either go all out aggro or all out control. Technically mid-range Warrior can work but it's much weaker than Shaman/Druid/Hunter mid-range, so it's not really worth it.

4) Light on card draw. You really only have the Acolytes and Shield Block. If you have Nat, he fits right in as this is a control deck and Slam is overall an excellent card and also strengths you against aggro.


Again, wholeheartedly agree, nothing more to add here.

2) Decide whether you want to go for more midgame pressure or be pure lategame. My build is pure lategame, as the only midgame minion I use are Frothings, but I really use those more often to strengthen my board vs aggro and to hopefully bait removal vs control. It seems like the European flavor is to go with more midgame pressure while the pure lategame is more popular on NA. I've tried both styles, each have their merits. If you lack some of the legendaries that I'll list later, the midgame variant is lighter on legendaries.


After you just said why mid-range isn't the way to go with the Warrior, why are you suggesting a mid-game focused deck? Mid-game pressure is contradictory to big Alex plays, and you have plenty of armor to pad your life total to survive against aggressive decks without committing to mid-game creatures too heavily. I mean, I can understand not wanting to rely on Alex too heavily, but that's what makes Warrior control what it is, the Alex+Grom combo. Even if it's the last card in your deck Warrior control has all the necessary tools to survive for as long as you need to in order to get your game ending combo up, if anything you need more ways to stall rather than ways to pressure. Baron Geddon for example is an excellent staller, a big 7/5 body that basically does a Consecrate every turn(though it also hurts you), if your opponent has a troublesome fatty on board just kill it with the Baron, if not than just let it consecrate every turn until your opponent deals with it and kill off whatever remains from your opponent's board with your other tools. Cairne is also a decent option for a road block, being a 4/5 body that replaces itself on death, so unless silenced you basically get 2 4/5 bodies to soak up some damage/minions. Rag, Ysera, etc are all unnecessary and contradictory to your main game plan, and considering that you're so focused on your plan A(Grom+Alex combo) your plan B is highly unlikely to work, so it does more harm(by wasting card slots that you'd otherwise use to stay alive in the early-mid game) than good.
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Posts: 915
Last night I got utterly destroyed. I won one game out of I think nine. Somewhere along the line the blinding pain made me lose count. I found that despite all the control I have early game I was entering the late game devoid of board presence. I made a couple of changes in hopes that they might propel me to Mid game where I can establish board control, which is where this deck really shines. This is how the deck stands at the momment

Minions
2X – Cruel Taskmaster
2X – Acolyte of Pain
2X – Harvest Golem
2X – Frothing Berserker
1X – Faceless Manipulator
2X – Boulderfist Ogre
1X – Cairne Bloodhoof
1X – Grommash Hellscream
1X – Ragnaros the Firelord
1X – Alexstrasza

Spells
2X – Execute
2X – Shield Slam
2X – Cleave
2X – Slam
2X – Shield Block
2X – Brawl

Weapons
2X – Fiery War Axe
2X – Gorehowl

I’m bringing this up because I got rid of four seemingly cardinal cards. I dropped the Armorsmiths and replaced them with Harvest Golems. I then dropped Whirlwind and replaced it with Cleave. I’m wondering if there is something inherently wrong with this card change because I only see up sides.

My problem last night was that I couldn’t get to the late game, at least not on even terms. This forced me into a reactionary gameplay which is the bane of control. When forced into that style of play my Legendaries became relatively impotent, irrelevant, which in turn killed the late game.

I believe these changes remedy that problem. The Harvest Golem is a staple in most decks. It’s a royal pain to get rid of, it buys time, and it trades rather well. Cleave is awesome at getting rid of pesky early game creatures and in the late game can set up executes. As this is a control deck I believe my ability to minimize the random factor makes this a viable card.

As far as what I’m losing; I already have four cards to enrage Grom, and I run two copies of Brawl so I don’t need Whirlwind as a weak board sweep. To be perfectly honest Armorsmith has done relatively little for me. With so much early game removal, Armor Up happens at least every other turn, not to mention Shield Block add’s five stacks to begin with. In a ten turn game it’s likely I’ll pick up 15 to 20 stacks without the Armorsmith.

Are these viable choices or am I missing something?
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Posts: 256
Peripatetic, first of all, what's your current rank this season and who were your opponents? Aggressive druids with savage roar, warlocks with giants? Just to make the whole situation clear.

Anyway, I made several changes to my own control deck to give me an edge against strong mid-game paladins and warlocks (thanks to Reynad for making mid-game locks popular) and shammies, which were the biggest problems for me in the previous season. My deck now looks a lot like the old pyrosmith decks, with this setup:

2x Execute
2x Whirlwing
2x Shield Slam
1x Slam
2x Shield Block
1x Brawl

2x Fiery War Axe

2x Cruel Taskmaster (looking to replace them with Inner Rage for Pyromancer synergy)
2x Armorsmith
2x Acolyte of Pain
1x Wild Pyromancer (looking to add another one instead of Slam)
1x Tinkmaster Overspark
2x Frothing Berzerker
2x Sen'Jin Shieldmasta
1x Faceless Manipulator
1x Abomination (shammies are forced to spend a removal or have their board wiped)
1x Boulderfist Ogre
1x Cairne Bloodhoof
1x Grom
1x Alexstrasza

I'm not sure your decision to remove Whirlwind and Armorsmiths was a correct one, mainly because Whirlwing serves the purpose of getting cards out of your Acolytes and buffing up your Frothings while removing any unwanted Divine Shields and 1-hp minions. Can also be used in combination with Wild Pyro for additional damage and draw.

So, in my variant of the deck, Whirlwind is an essential play in order to squeeze maximum out of Acolytes. Unless you add an Auctioneer, they are the best source of draw you get, and you'd better make sure they cycle through as many of your cards as possible.

Problem of surviving the midgame is what I used Yetis + Defender of Argus for, but getting both of these cards and enough mana for them to combo was a bit of a pain, and Sen'Jin is an excellent equivalent that forces your opponent to do early unfavourable trades or, again, waste a removal. Abomination comes especially useful in mid-range, since it's very hard to deal with it efficiently - you either waste a removal or significantly damage your army (which, in mid-range decks, consists of rather low-health minions), while possibly buffing my Frothing or giving me a draw from an Acolyte.

This setup needs a little more testing, but it proved to be very effective to me, and I believe that adding another Wild Pyromancer might actually remove the need of Brawl whatsoever. I make sure to play Frothings, Sen'Jins and Abomination before my actual threats, so when Ogres, Cairne, Alex and Faceless enter the field, my opponent finds himself in a very tough spot, with many of his resources wasted already.

One other thing I'm considering is crafting Baron Geddon and replacing the ogre with him. Not sure if it's worth doing, but considering the rest of the composition (Pyros, Aboms), the deck can be turned into an unstoppable fiery board clear which instills fear in the heart of enemies and shows them who the lord of fire really is.
Edited by Phoenix on 3/7/2014 12:06 AM PST
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Posts: 915
03/06/2014 10:37 PMPosted by Phoenix
Peripatetic, first of all, what's your current rank this season and who were your opponents?

Well to answer your question I didn't play ranked this season. I'm currently living in Thailand, and my network: freezes, drops me randomly, lags me through multiple turns, and is all around unreliable. It's about 50/50 where this is not the case, as such it's unlikely my rank would be a representation of my play. As this is the case I'm honing decks so I'll be ready when get back on the 18th.

Anyway I know some of my changes were not well received. I got better if mixed results with them. I had some insane luck a few days ago, two packs; Edwin, Mukkla, Gruul, and Onyxia. It seemed like now was the time to come back and hone it some more. Anyway I've reworked so a game drawing out to turn six all but a certainty, so I can start dropping Ogres and baiting control. Legendaries are so much easier to play now that Tinkmaster is gimped and if it gets to that point I think I've got a good shot at the win.

I've also begun to learn how to approach this deck. I'm learning how to curb my own aggression to make the smart play rather than the seemingly obvious one. It's very hard to be patient when there are no creatures on the board, and you've got a Fiery War Axe.

Anyway this is what I've got. Only played one game so far. I beat down a watcher druid, though I'm not sure if that says anything.

Minions
Cruel Taskmaster
Acolyte of Pain
Frothing Berserker
Harvest Golem
Sen’jin shieldmaster
Boulderfist Ogre
Grom Hellscream – L
Ragnaros the Firelord – L
Alexstraza – L
Onyxia – L

Spells
Exicute
Shield Slam
Cleave
Slam
Shield Blcok
Brawl – 1X

Weapons
Fiery War Axe
Gorehowl – 1X

2X unless marked otherwise. I'd like some thoughts on any potential weaknesses or suggestions.
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