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Kobal

Which competitive deck to build first?

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As the thread title indicates I am relatively new to Hearthstone still but have started to  dabbled in constructed play with basic or near-basic decks. The deck lists on this site have been very helpful in this regard. 

 

There have been quite a few frustrating losses though that at least partially could be attributed to my inferior card quality. As such I have been looking around in the deck list section for affordable top tier decks that would put me in a position where my losses are due to my lacking playskill only. I have found three potential candidates, but do lack the experience to judge how competitive they truly are, and as a result which one to work towards. Hence advice would be welcome whether they are indeed all equally viable and a mere matter of personal taste, or whether one or more of the alternatives is objectively superior. 

 

The three candidates:

 

Warlock Zoo in its different variations:



 

Face Hunter (Substituting Leeroy Jenkins for starters)

 


 

 

 

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Zoo is one of the best decks for new players. Although it isn't as straightforward as face hunter, it is still easy to play and is powerful at the same time. However, aggressive decks are easy to play but hard to master and this is one of the cases. It can easily get you to rank 10 and with some skill and higher budget, it can get you up to legendary.

 

Face hunter is currently (in my opinion) the strongest face deck. You can see it from rank 20 all the way to legend. As I already said, this deck is easy to play but hard to master. The low budget with fast games make this deck a very good option to ladder with. 

 

Grim Patron is very strong deck and has many variants. I do not recommend this deck, since it is very hard to play. This deck is a combo deck, allowing you to make huge bursts of damage. It is the hardest out of these three, but can be very rewarding. 

 

I personally recommend zoo, but the choice is up to you. You should choose by the way you like to play. Zoo is control, face hunter is aggro and GP is combo.

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Grim Patron Warrior is currently considered to be one of the best decks in the game, if not the very best. As positiv2 stated, however, it is very difficult to play and probably not the ideal deck to start with.

 

Face Hunter is a good starting deck. Many players start here due to its simple nature and because it's the cheapest deck to make. However, there is a lot of wisdom in positv2's comment that it's easy to play yet hard to master. Going straight for face isn't always the best choice, although it usually is... biggrin.png

 

Zoo is also a good choice. I consider it a tempo deck rather than straightforward control, as you're not looking to delay the game or keep your opponent's board completely clear until the late turns. With Zoo you want to flood the board with minions, thus allowing you to manage the board through favorable trades while still keeping enough minions alive to maintain pressure on the opponent and gradually chip away at their life total. You want to be one step ahead of your opponent the whole way, making them play catch-up. In short, you strive to keep the tempo in your favor until you reach lethal. You don't want the game to go into the late turns as you will run out of steam before popular control decks such as Warrior and Priest. Terminology aside, Zoo is a good deck that can compete with both aggro and control.

 

I haven't tried Mech Zoo and I don't even recall playing against it, but seeing the link makes me want to try it. Collecting the mech cards will also help you transition to other popular mech decks such as Mage and Shaman.

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I have started building and playing Face Hunter now, and while I still don't have all the cards (I am just loathe to craft commons like Ironbeak Owl and Abusive Sergeant, they have to be in one of the next packs I earn in Arena or Tavern Brawl, right?) it is already performing decently well and contrary to the sentiment I read actually quite fun to play. smile.png

 

Now, though, two Doomguards, one Knife Juggler, one Defender of Argus, one Imp-losion and two Sea Giants have found their way into my collection and I am wondering  whether it is worth the arcane dust investment to give Sea Giant Zoo a whirl. Against what sort of decks would that one perform better than Face Hunter?

Edited by Kobal

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I think zoo decks might be the best to start off with in general, because you deal with a lot of mechanics and decision making that are vital to learning about the game as a whole. Learning how to play minions with the correct positioning on the board and how to get the most value out of trading into enemy minions are huge things, and I see a lot of people make mistakes, like ramming their minions into taunts in no particular order or not taking advantage of a valuable trade to hit face instead.

I'd recommend Warlock zoo and then moving into a Maylgos dragon Warlock deck if you can manage it, because they're both very consistent decks to start out with.

As far as mech decks go, I haven't generally seen a lot of issues playing against them, unless I'm playing a weird deck and they get a good draw and flood the board. I've not played them at all, but with how easily I've usually beaten them using a variety of decks I wouldn't really say to go that route.

Patron warrior is incredibly popular, especially right now, because it is a very strong and consistent deck, but I wouldn't recommend it because it falls flat on its face against a lot of matchups since it relies so much on combos and having board conditions a certain way if you're not used to playing it or are new to the game.

I'd also recommend control decks in most flavors, Paladin and Warrior primarily. Once you get to a point where you learn what kind of other decks are out there or what sort of removal they'll typically play, you're pretty much guaranteed to win quite often simply by dragging the game out and baiting all of their removal so you can drop big minions.

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I have started building and playing Face Hunter now, and while I still don't have all the cards (I am just loathe to craft commons like Ironbeak Owl and Abusive Sergeant, they have to be in one of the next packs I earn in Arena or Tavern Brawl, right?) it is already performing decently well and contrary to the sentiment I read actually quite fun to play. smile.png

 

Now, though, two Doomguards, one Knife Juggler, one Defender of Argus, one Imp-losion and two Sea Giants have found their way into my collection and I am wondering  whether it is worth the arcane dust investment to give Sea Giant Zoo a whirl. Against what sort of decks would that one perform better than Face Hunter?

 

Zoo is about having sticky minions and boosting your minions to trade up. Having sticky minions is better against decks with AoE removals, such as midrange paladin with Consecration. Boosting your minions to trade up is better against slower decks that are able to drop one minion per turn, such as ramp druid. However, face decks are unfavourable match-ups, because of your hero power and being unable to trade up (because there usually are no big minions). So basically you are favoured against control and some midrange decks, but you often lose to face decks.

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