Grandmaster/Master mage Decklist

Posts: 18
10/19/2013 01:43 PMPosted by Jerdubya
Some things I've noticed since my last post. I'm still struggling to keep damage off of my hero while clearing the board. Here are a few things I'm not sure about. Are you using specific spell cards (pyro or fireball) for direct hero damage or can any spells be used to maintain board control? I'm sometimes unsure when I should use a frostbolt which could be why I can't keep the board clear. I've also noticed that blizzard rarely turns up in my hand. I'm going to switch to two flamestrikes and see what happens. Also, what do you think about using Antonidas in this deck?


Just in the most general sense, you want to use your direct damage spells as efficiently as possible, which is obvious, but what it really boils down to is that you want to use the direct spells to clear out their board as much as possible around the mid game, after hopefully letting their side fill up with minions and wiping it down. The only time you should be casting a direct damage spell to them directly is either when you have spell damage creatures in play that you fear might die before you get to cast it, or when you have calculated that there is a reasonable chance for you to kill them in the near future off of damage spells.

A more complicated situation arises late late game, where you are basically top-decking. enemy hunter is at 6 life with a 2/2 in play and no cards. You are at 7 life with a frostbolt in hand and nothing else. What is the correct play?

In my opinion you should cast the fireball on yourself and concede...all jokes aside, at this point it is better to cast the frostbolt on your opponent. due to the large amount of removal you have in your deck in the late game each card you draw is going to, on average, be able to deal with that 2/2, or hopefully kill them on the spot. Frostbolting the opponent instead of the creature gives you a greater chance at killing them the next turn, with the additional advantage that it nullifies any weaponry they might draw. If you clear the board instead, the hunter can easily outrace you with his hero power, and since mage decks are centered on board control (creature killing) you want that creature to be in play if you can afford it, because if you draw say a cone of cold, its useless against the hunter directly. Note that taking this path, you would also use your hero power on the hunter, in case of say, an arcane missiles draw the next turn.

Switching to two flamestrikes is a valid strategy, especially before you get to masters~ rating, where people tend to zerg out more creatures with less care, which can on occasion pubstomp a mage before he has the mana to react appropriately.

As for antonidas, I really have no clue how good he is honestly, I haven't had the chance to play with him yet, nor do I have the card. Even playing against him I've only seen him a few times with both good and bad results...perhaps you can try him out and let me know how good he is. At the end though I think he's really just the Jaraxxus of mage decks, seeing as he's sort of a "win-more" type of card who is great in stalemates, but can't save you immediately like many other cards can.
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Posts: 3
can anyone recommend a good replacement for: Bloodmage Thalnos (don't have that card) ?

right now i replace him with malygos...cause that card i have ;) but its a 9 drop vs a 2 drop..so not sure if this is a good trade..
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Posts: 18
I think the closest replacements to what he provides would be something along the lines of acolyte of pain, or dalaran mage. But in reality, those each provide separate things (card advantage and spell power) and the reason he is so good is because he combines both those things, the only other card to do this is azure drake, which is already in the deck. Try out acolyte first and see how well he does.
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Posts: 2,277
Some things I've noticed since my last post. I'm still struggling to keep damage off of my hero while clearing the board. Here are a few things I'm not sure about. Are you using specific spell cards (pyro or fireball) for direct hero damage or can any spells be used to maintain board control? I'm sometimes unsure when I should use a frostbolt which could be why I can't keep the board clear. I've also noticed that blizzard rarely turns up in my hand. I'm going to switch to two flamestrikes and see what happens. Also, what do you think about using Antonidas in this deck?


Just in the most general sense, you want to use your direct damage spells as efficiently as possible, which is obvious, but what it really boils down to is that you want to use the direct spells to clear out their board as much as possible around the mid game, after hopefully letting their side fill up with minions and wiping it down. The only time you should be casting a direct damage spell to them directly is either when you have spell damage creatures in play that you fear might die before you get to cast it, or when you have calculated that there is a reasonable chance for you to kill them in the near future off of damage spells.

A more complicated situation arises late late game, where you are basically top-decking. enemy hunter is at 6 life with a 2/2 in play and no cards. You are at 7 life with a frostbolt in hand and nothing else. What is the correct play?

In my opinion you should cast the fireball on yourself and concede...all jokes aside, at this point it is better to cast the frostbolt on your opponent. due to the large amount of removal you have in your deck in the late game each card you draw is going to, on average, be able to deal with that 2/2, or hopefully kill them on the spot. Frostbolting the opponent instead of the creature gives you a greater chance at killing them the next turn, with the additional advantage that it nullifies any weaponry they might draw. If you clear the board instead, the hunter can easily outrace you with his hero power, and since mage decks are centered on board control (creature killing) you want that creature to be in play if you can afford it, because if you draw say a cone of cold, its useless against the hunter directly. Note that taking this path, you would also use your hero power on the hunter, in case of say, an arcane missiles draw the next turn.

Switching to two flamestrikes is a valid strategy, especially before you get to masters~ rating, where people tend to zerg out more creatures with less care, which can on occasion pubstomp a mage before he has the mana to react appropriately.

As for antonidas, I really have no clue how good he is honestly, I haven't had the chance to play with him yet, nor do I have the card. Even playing against him I've only seen him a few times with both good and bad results...perhaps you can try him out and let me know how good he is. At the end though I think he's really just the Jaraxxus of mage decks, seeing as he's sort of a "win-more" type of card who is great in stalemates, but can't save you immediately like many other cards can.


Hey Bodwin, I'm currently 3* Master as well. Antonidas is very solid in a Secrets Deck running 2x Counterspell and Spellbender. Basically you play him turn 10+ with one of those secrets and just destroy people. I like to lead into him with a spellbender the turn before i play him and then play him with a counterspell. I feel right now though, that counterplay is the best way to play a Mage and have migrated away from big plays. I basically run 3 silence, 3 weapon removal, 2 poly, 6 aoe spells, and 2x FrstB, FB, PB. It really takes people out of their element when you counter like half their plays (or more).
Edited by Hippy on 10/21/2013 10:47 PM PDT
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Posts: 136
can anyone recommend a good replacement for: Bloodmage Thalnos (don't have that card) ?

right now i replace him with malygos...cause that card i have ;) but its a 9 drop vs a 2 drop..so not sure if this is a good trade..


If you have two kobold geomancers you should be fine and i would agree a never replace a 2 drop with a 9. I guess if you really want you could put in dalaran mage or a ogre magi but those are still 3, and 4 drops. As long as you have two azure drakes and two kobold geomancers you should be fine. If you want the card draw just throw in a loot hoarder in place of thanos.
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Posts: 2,796
everyone always using Bloodmage Thalnos -.- if only i had $100s to buy packs.
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Posts: 55
You don't need 100$, I crafted him.

But I wanted to give my thoughts on something, instead of the spell replicator secret.

Why not use the secret that replicates minions when they are summoned, I found that much more universal and useful.
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Posts: 3
thanx 4 reply, will try acolyte of pain for now.

and btw. AWESOME deck @bodwin!
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Posts: 55
thanx 4 reply, will try acolyte of pain for now.


I'm not so sure about acolyte of pain. For 3 mana cost, you will average about 1.5 cards drawn. An arcane intellect would give you 2 cards for 3 mana, instantly. Since it only does 1 damage I find acolyte to be a pretty weak option most of the time, and it essentially works as just a damage soaker for you in the early stages of the game since they're likely to try and one shot it even if that means losing out on 1 damage from their 4 damage minion.

I guess there's some advantage to be had from that, and he does always guarantee you 1 card to replace himself (unless he gets SW:P), but I just find him to be too expensive for what he gives. If you really want the card draw I would recommend just a Novice Engineer. She basically accomplishes the same thing a turn earlier.


Bloodmage thalmos provides an additional spell damage. Point is, there is nothing that can 100% substitute thalmos, he is "best in slot" so to speak.
Edited by Dizzy on 10/22/2013 11:13 PM PDT
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Posts: 120
Great Deck, I don't have a Bloodmage so just used my Antonidas in his place, works perfectly as there is a lot of low mana cost spells in the deck to use to grab fireballs.

Thing I like about the deck is in certain situations you can use arcane explosion multiple times against single targets to save your sheep for something else. Really handy for opponents that play fewer but stronger minions instead of Zerg.
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Posts: 18
The higher up you go MMR wise, the larger the creatures tend to be individually, which is ultimately the best strategy seeing as how common board wipe cards are in the current meta, it makes sense to play high toughness creatures, as well as 4 power creatures to deal with priest(as bad as that is). I would agree with the majority of you that say antonidas is strong, but I feel that late game you really need to rely on him having counterspell/spellbender backup, which is not bad unto itself, but necessitates packing all 4 secrets, along with likely bringing a kirin-tor mage for synergy. Playing all 4 secrets can really negatively impact your game just based on mana curve. Playing a secret on turn 3 makes you lose momentum against fast decks, and doesn't increase card advantage against slow decks. The same can be said against on each turn...unless you're stopping a holy nova or spellbending a blessing of kings, secrets will detract from your tempo - and while they do bring up your late game effectiveness, they can really hurt your deck against aggro.
All of this said however, if priests continue to exist at their current power level, i think we'll all be forced to run 4x silence and 4x secrets.

You don't need 100$, I crafted him.

But I wanted to give my thoughts on something, instead of the spell replicator secret.

Why not use the secret that replicates minions when they are summoned, I found that much more universal and useful.


As some other mages have already said on the forums, mirror entity is probably still the most common secret cast by mages so players will usually suspect it, and then play around it by playing a weak creature, then waiting to cast their threat. Counterspell and Spellbender are both much more difficult to play around, each coming with the guarantee of 1-for-1 card advantage, or better in the case of spellbender. On a side note, those familiar with other tcg type games will know that having 1 copy of each card in a deck is, by nature, the most efficient methodology of deck construction - accounting for the element of surprise. Why do we have 2 copies of some cards in the deck? because the second copy happens to be better than the first copy of any other card for the same slot. In my opinion, this is not the case when playing mage against a random deck, but as stated earlier, accounting for the metagame it could be appropriate to move up to two copies of each counterspell and spellbender (and this strategy definitely becomes more efficient the larger creatures you play).
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Posts: 18
Got my beta invite 3 days ago - and as of right now already diamond 2s thanks to this amazing deck!

ps: i used to play mtgo a lot ;)
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Posts: 64
I Replace the ooze with Mage Apprenctice. And Well I rocket to Diamond 3s. :D

Any idea how many wins it is to master? Today I won 5 matches and lost 1. Yesterday I lost 3 and won 3.

With the Mage Apprentice my spells has lesser mana and they become more of a sponge from the enemy team. 3/2 still hurts :D
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Posts: 18
I Replace the ooze with Mage Apprenctice. And Well I rocket to Diamond 3s. :D

Any idea how many wins it is to master? Today I won 5 matches and lost 1. Yesterday I lost 3 and won 3.

With the Mage Apprentice my spells has lesser mana and they become more of a sponge from the enemy team. 3/2 still hurts :D

Grats on the rating, and yeah sorc apprentice is definitely better than ooze in the deck. As far as how many wins it takes you to get to master it all depends on your skill level, or rather the skill level blizzard thinks you are. For me, I won 7 straight games from diamond 2 to masters 3 and that's all it took were those games. From what I can tell, win streaks are your best shot at moving up divisions. If you really want to win - now's the time to do it, a huge wave of invites came out today (lots of noobs that haven't seen our secret teach to beat up on). If you win 60% of your games it should take you about 40-50 games to move up from diamond 3 to masters 3, but that's just my best guess
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Posts: 19
I used like half of these to build a test deck and so far I've won five games in a row
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Posts: 55


Jeez Tiber, how'd you get all those gold cards??? Gotta admit I'm quite jealous of you for being able to pocket those.

Anyways, I noticed you ran Mana Wyrms and no Blizzards. I'm quite terrible at handling opponents if I don't have Blizzard in my deck. Could you share why you don't run Blizz and prefer a hot target like Mana Wyrm?


if they dont clear the wyrm he will grow and he helps me through early game to midgame, so its always a trade i win, if i play him, cause they waste a turn just for killing a 1 mana card and if not they maybe take 3-9 dmg from him and get closer to kill range for my spells. once i even won on turn 5 with wyrm and some other cards (lethal dmg).

dont like blizzard too much cost 5 mana and deal 2 dmg (would get my mana curve to high), got enough aoe with 2 arc explo, 2xcone of cold and flamestrike. cone of cold + kobold = same like blizzard, expect i can use them for different things and they are single used cheaper ofc.

and my deck is outdated (its from pre wipe) dalaran mage isnt worth it anymore, got a new one since patch

http://s14.directupload.net/images/131016/n37bm4mg.png

at the moment im testing out second water elemental or ogre mage or ragnaros(think hes to expensive cause of 2 pyros) instead of hogger

edit just played some warrior, i got my wyrm in turn 1 he wasnt able to counter it, i counterd all his minions and he conceded on turn 4^^

http://s1.directupload.net/images/131016/frsn29s2.png


I tested some things, and I found 2 water ele's weren't cutting it. They also have 3 attack which isn't good against priests. So 2 ogres and 1 water ele is perfect. I tried out Hogger again instead of archmage, and I am going about 75-80% win rate in 3 star masters... Hogger is simply too useful to drop for archmage. Try it out guys, see what you think and add me so we can duel! ;)

EDIT: I was thinking about dropping 1 of the ogres for a blizzard, but not sure that is necessary.
Edited by Dizzy on 10/25/2013 9:31 PM PDT
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Posts: 55
I still think Hogger > Arch

But the faerie dragons over the sorcs apprentices aren't bad

I will test

EDIT: 41 minutes later and 8 games played I am not liking the arch nor the faerie dragon

Reasons:

1.Faerie dragon: Although he is not targetable by spells and hero powers, you must still understand the sorc counterpart still requires use of a card to get rid of... still giving you a card advantage, but also her reduced cost of spells is irreplaceable IN MY OPINION

So I am switching back to sorc

2.Archmage: This card isn't bad, high defense paired with spell damage. The reason I prefer Hogger is that when the game has gone on for 7+ turns Archmage isn't the card I wan't to spend my mana on, mainly because at that stage in the game the opponent may be swarming OR it is a top deck situation, and this is where Hogger will beat Archmage any day. If you have been using your spells properly your opponent could be on the ropes. You shouldn't need the extra spell damage from him compared to the stackable taunt minions provided by Hogger.

BOTH ARE FINE, but Hogger comes in handy more often than Archmage IMO

Conclusion/TLDR: I believe sorc > faerie AND hogger>arch


I will do more testing and edit this if need be!
Edited by Dizzy on 10/26/2013 3:33 AM PDT
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Posts: 4
What was your reasoning behind letting Bloodmage live for so long in our mage vs mage match a few mins ago Dizzy?
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