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hearthstone Sottle's Weekly Hearthstone Meta Analysis for Week of 23/11/2014 - 30/11/2014

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Sottle walks us through what's hot and what's not in the Hearthstone meta


                                  Hearthstone Meta Analysis: 23/11/2014 - 30/11/2014


Welcome to an ongoing weekly series where I discuss the state of the meta-game in Hearthstone. Which classes are strong? How should you be building your decks to counter them? Which is the best class to be playing right now to climb ladder? These are all questions that I hope to address in these articles. So let’s jump right in.


Common Decks and Cards.


Unfortunately, I don't have a great deal to report this week. Usually things do tend to stagnate towards the end of a season, but this month is a special case due to the imminent release of Goblins vs Gnomes. With such a huge meta shake up expected in the coming weeks, people are lacking motivation to "solve" the current meta, or to innovate new decks.


In fact, we've seen more innovation at this weeks Dreamhack Hearthstone Championships then we have on the ladder. Decks like Firebat's Youthful Brewmaster Druid and Strifecro's Fatigue Mage have made a big splash and could pop on ladder in the coming days.


One observation I have continuously made this week is the decrease in Zoo and the increase of Handlock at high rank. A quick look at my stats reveals that 78% of the Warlocks I have played this week have been Handlock, that's a huge number.  This is probably due to my observation last week that the meta had slown down a little, making room for Handlock to come in and dominate the Control matchups. With the Handlock vs Hunter match now much more winable than it used to be, it seems like a solid choice.


Control Warrior has also appeared in greater numbers this week. People tend to gravitate towards Warrior towards the end of a season as it proves to be such a solid and consistent deck time after time. The Warrior builds do still tend to be teched down towards Aggro with additional cards like Whirlwind and Ironbeak Owl as opposed to greedier builds that run additional late game cards like Ysera.


Card Choices


I would echo last weeks advice. The meta seems to have a healthy mix right now, so building a strong deck against the field right now continues to seem correct. 


The prediction from last week that the meta would continue to slow down has somewhat come to fruition but not to the extent that running all out greedy Control seems correct. Hunters are still around, and are still able to punish you, so make sure your deck carries enough early game to deal with them.


Class Power Rankings




1. Warlock





Warlock holds its spot for the 3rd week running. Although Zoo seems to be at its weakest point since I began writing these, every Zoo that has disappeared has been replaced by a Handlock, leaving the relative power level of the class pretty much unchanged.



2. Warrior





Warrior finally breaks the Hunter/Zoo axiom at the top of the rankings this week. As mentioned previously, Warrior is a strong fall back for many players towards the end of a season due to how consistently strong it is season after season. Warrior built with additional early game in mind is an extremely strong deck against the field right now.


3. Hunter






I thought long and hard about this one, but I feel it's finally time to drop Hunter down. With almost every deck on ladder built with Hunter in mind, Hunter can have an uphill climb to be successful. Despite that, the fact that it is still incredibly powerful and capable of beating even its strongest counter decks with the right draw keeps it at a respectable 3rd.



4. Rogue






Rogue continues to be strong this week with numerous players looking to finish in the top 10 Legend spots playing Miracle variations. The strength of Rogue right now is that all the Control decks are playing additional cards like Zombie Chow and Ironbeak Owl to deal with Hunter, which take the place of additional power cards that can really threaten Rogue.


=4. Druid






Druid continues to improve. As well as Fast Druid being far and away the MVP of the recent Dreamhack Championships, the sheer flexibility of Druid makes it a fine choice. Changing something as small as 1 or 2 cards can skew your matchups in one direction or another, meaning it's easy and effective to adapt to what you're facing on a daily basis.



6. Shaman





I may have oversold Shaman last week. While the commentary on Shaman's power being during times where there is a good spread of decks in the meta is accurate, the current spread turns out to be fairly awkward for Shaman to deal with. The decks tend to be either too fast, or just capable of outlasting them. It remains a strong answer to Warrior however.



7. Priest





Not much change in the bottom 3 classes, so apologies for echoing my sentiments from last week, but without a strictly aggro dominated meta, there is little reason to play Priest on ladder. Other Control classes are capable of dealing with the Aggro problems and are actual able to hold their own in Control vs Control much more favourably than Priest.


8. Paladin






No great improvement for Paladin this week. It functions purely as a Control stopper and gets crushed when faced with any sort of consistent aggression.



9. Mage





Mage continues to suffer from not having a powerful build that is not directly overshadowed by a different class. However, if GvG does not release in the imminent future, keep an eye out for Strifecro's Fatigue Mage potentially making a splash.

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