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Cheap Mage Wild Deck

Last updated on Apr 25, 2016 at 14:37 by Sottle 86 comments

Table of Contents

This deck:

  • has been designed for players who have levelled most classes to Level 10, cleared the AI, and are looking to start climbing in Ranked mode;
  • costs 1,000 Arcane Dust or less;
  • is built entirely of Basic, Common and Rare cards.

While this deck will not immediately make you competitive at the highest levels of Ranked mode, it is strong, and replicates many key strategies of high level decks while using cheaper cards. If played well, it can certainly hold its own against decks of higher cost.

In addition to listing the deck, we will also discuss the cards that are included and how they are best used, as well as explaining the reasoning behind cards that are not included. Finally we will explain how you can improve the deck through various resources you may have available, such as the Curse of Naxxramas Adventure.

Note that to succeed with this deck (as with all decks), you need to make the correct decisions while playing. For this reason, we advise you to also read these two articles: Card Advantage and Why Am I Losing?.

1. About the Author

This deck is presented to you by Sottle, a professional Hearthstone player who plays for compLexity Gaming. Sottle regularly streams on Twitch and explains all of his moves. Watching him is a good opportunity to see how this and other decks play out in practice, and how decisions are made in real time.

2. Cheap Mage Wild Deck

Our deck costs 980 Arcane Dust and it is made up of the following cards.

Mage Cards Neutral Cards

2.1. Mana Curve


3. Strategy

This Mage deck is built to be recklessly aggressive from the outset. It features an extremely low curve of minions, and various forms of direct damage to overwhelm your opponent. When playing the deck you should mulligan very aggressively for your early minions like Worgen Infiltrator, Mana Wyrm and Knife Juggler, and only keep cards like Mirror Image or Arcane Missiles if you already have the above cards to synergise with them.

When playing the deck, it is usually best not to play around the options your opponent might have to counter you. For example, holding back an additional minion because your opponent might have an AoE spell is often incorrect. It is usually more beneficial to simply push all-in and force them to have the answer, or lose.

3.1. Card Choices

In this section we will discuss some of the cards that have been chosen, how to use them effectively, and why they are chosen over other possibilities. Hopefully this will both help you to succeed with this deck, as well as inform your own deck building decisions in the future.

Arcane Missiles represents 3 damage for 1 Mana, making it an efficient source of damage in this deck. Despite this, you should refrain from simply throwing it out on turn 1, and instead wait for a point where it can used to clear a minion, or buff your Mana Wyrm.

Ice Lance represents 4 damage for 1 Mana, making it even more efficient than Arcane Missiles. However, it requires an activator, either Snowchugger or Frostbolt, in order to deal damage. Be wary of using up your Frostbolts before you have drawn into your Ice Lances.

Mirror Image is a stalling card. It can be used in the early game to protect your cards like Mana Wyrm and Knife Juggler while synergising with their effects, or in the late-game to buy you the additional turn you need to inflict lethal damage.

Mana Wyrm is your strongest 1 drop, and the starting point for your deck. The games in which you get turn 1 Mana Wyrm will usually be the easiest for you to win, since this card provides an excellent platform for you to build on.

Frostbolt is a hugely efficient spell. It can be used to clear minions in order to create more repetitive damage to your opponent with your minions, or to create large amounts of burst damage to the opponent in combination with Ice Lance.

Snowchugger is included in the deck both to provide the ability to freeze weapon classes, stopping them from removing your minions, and to function as an additional activator for Ice Lance.

Wolfrider are both crucial cards in order to ramp up the aggression in the mid-game. Wolfrider is a fine play any time you have the Mana available, although you should consider whether to hold onto it to potentially get value from an Abusive Sergeant later.

Polymorph: Boar is a flexible card that can be used to turn a small token minion like a Mirror Image into an aggressive attacker, or to push through a huge minion in the later turns when your opponent is starting to get a grip back on your early aggression.

Fireball is your final finisher card. Although common sense would seem to dictate that this is the most important card to hold in order to finish your opponent, you can actually afford to be a little more liberal with Fireballs in terms of clearing minions, as they are not needed to activate the Ice Lances in your deck.

Jeeves is your primary card draw engine in the deck, and can help you cycle through your cards very quickly. Since the deck plays a very low curve, you will often be able to empty your whole hand before playing Jeeves, allowing the full 3 card draw. If you are able to protect Jeeves with a Mirror Image, you may be able to cycle through a huge portion of your deck, since you are very likely to be able to play all the cards you draw on a particular turn.

3.2. Card Omissions

Here we will talk about some of the cards that are not included to help you understand and identify weaker cards, hopefully improving your deck building skills.

The Mage secrets are not played, since without using Mad Scientist, playing a Secret from your hand for 3 Mana is usually much too slow for such a fast paced deck. If you do have access to the Naxxramas set however, Mirror Entity and Counterspell can possibly be included alongside Mad Scientist.

The board clear spells like Blizzard and Flamestrike are not used. This is because this deck is highly focused on being the aggressor and forcing the opponent to clear your minions. If you are forced into a position where a board clear is necessary, you have probably lost anyway, making the AoE spells unnecessary.

3.3. Card Swaps

Obviously, as a Cheap deck, this list has a lot of room for improvement. As you progress with the game and gain access to more cards and Arcane Dust, here are some additions that you may consider.

If you have access to the Naxxramas set, the following additions are excellent:

  • 2 x Mad Scientist, 2 x Mirror Entity for 2 x Arcane Missiles, 2 x Snowchugger. Mad Scientist can create some powerful tempo turns by summoning a Secret when it dies. Mirror Entity is the most effective secret to choose in a deck like this as it can put your opponent in some very awkward situations when trying to drop powerful answers to your Aggro creatures.

If you have access to the League of Explorers expansion, the following additions are strong choices:

For other strong cards to consider, look at our full budget Mage decks, or our Crafting Guide.

4. ChangeLog

  • 25 Apr. 2016: Updated to reflect ToG Nerfs.
  • 16 Dec. 2015: Updated with LoE card swap suggestions.
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