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Fast Discard Warlock Zoo Wild Deck

Last updated on Sep 10, 2015 at 11:33 by Sottle 38 comments

Table of Contents

This guide outlines a fast, aggressive Warlock deck. At an extremely low dust total of 1,420 plus Naxxramas and Blackrock Mountain cards, it is one of the cheapest decks that can compete at the highest ranks of the ladder as well as in a competitive setting.

This Grand Tournament version of the deck speeds the curve up again after the Blackrock Mountain meta being dominated by bigger, slower Zoo decks. Cards like Fist of Jaraxxus come into the deck and create more combinations for burst damage finishes, leading to a more aggressive deck overall.

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. Fast Discard Warlock Zoo Wild Deck

Our deck costs 1,420 Arcane Dust and it is made up of the following cards.

Warlock Cards Neutral Cards

2.1. Mana Curve


3. Strategy

The general strategy of Zoo is to aggressively build a board with small efficient minions and use your numerous buff cards to create favourable trades into higher cost minions. Combining this with the Warlock's Life Tap Hero Power, you can quickly overwhelm your opponent with card draw and create an imposing board state that they will not be able to answer.

A common mistake for newer players with this deck is to prioritise attacking the opponent’s life total directly. Instead you should focus on making favourable trades to maintain minions on the board and create more damage over time. Having said this, this deck is more focused on aggression and burst damage than most Zoo decks, and you do have to begin to push damage at some point. As a general rule, if the trade seems of equal value to both sides, you should push the damage to your opponent and let them trade back into you. However, always look out for situations where trading with a weaker minion protects a larger one from removal.

The key to playing this deck at a high level is minion positioning. When playing minions onto the board always consider cards like Defender of Argus and Dire Wolf Alpha, which rely on minion positions to apply their unique effects. For example, if you intend to apply a Defender of Argus buff to a Nerubian Egg you will want to place the Egg in the middle of your board to maximise the options of which other minion to taunt.

The early game is extremely important with this deck, so in the early turns you want to quickly establish a board advantage. The key cards to facilitate this are Flame Imp, Argent Squire, Voidwalker, and Abusive Sergeant. Using combinations of the Argent Squire's Divine Shield, or the Voidwalkers high health alongside the buff from Abusive Sergeant you can begin to remove your opponent's early minions whilst keeping your own alive, creating a board advantage that you can compound on in the later turns.

Following this you will transition to the mid-game where you will look to drop difficult to remove minions such as Nerubian Egg and Imp Gang Boss to consolidate your board position and make it difficult for your opponent to answer your board with AoE spells such as Lightning Storm or Consecration. It is important during this period that you do not over commit to the board if you do not have any of the above Deathrattle minions in play. Try to be aware of what your opponent can do to clear the board, and hold back sufficient cards in your hand to follow up the next turn if the worst should happen.

The buff cards in the deck such as Abusive Sergeant, Dire Wolf Alpha and Defender of Argus are vital in order to create favourable trades for your small minions. For example, an Abusive Sergeant buff placed on a Flame Imp can trade into a Chillwind Yeti, creating a huge Mana advantage. You should try to use these cards only in these particular situations and avoid using them simply to do damage to the opponent unless you are making a push for the win. Furthermore, these cards are essential for activating your Nerubian Eggs, although you should think about whether you prefer to keep your Egg inactive to prevent potential AoE from your opponent. Power Overwhelming falls into this group of cards as well, although it is tempting to hold this card as a finisher, it is best to use it as an additional buff card to make a favourable trade, especially if you are able to use it on a Deathrattle minion.

Moving towards the late-game, this deck does play more options than an average Zoo deck to create burst damage. Normally your opponent can feel safe when playing against a Zoo deck if they have cleared your board, since Doomguard is the only method of creating damage from an empty board. This deck however, also plays Soulfire and Fist of Jaraxxus which can be used in combination to create large amounts of burst damage. Fist of Jaraxxus is a useful card that can mitigate some of the downside of cards like Soulfire and Doomguard, but you should also not be afraid to cast it as a removal spell, or burst option in its own right if an opportunity presents itself to do so.

3.1. Mulligans & Matchup Specific Strategies

General mulligan strategy involves pushing aggressively for a Flame Imp and other 1-drops. With The Coin, a hand of 4 1-drops is fantastic as you can play 2 1-drop minions on Turn 1 followed by another 2 1-drops on Turn 2 and then use your Hero Power to refill on cards. Without the coin a more standard curve of creatures costing 1-3 Mana is preferable.

Against other aggressive decks that look to have a fast start such as Hunter, Mech Mage, or other Zoos, your best opening is Voidwalker as it is a key card early against aggro. Its 1/3 body can trade very favourably into opposing Leper Gnomes or other small minions, especially when targetted with an Abusive Sergeant buff.

3.2. Card Swaps

Flame Juggler is a new addition to the deck and is performing well, but you can choose to run the classic Haunted Creeper instead if you prefer.

Hellfire is an inclusion that can help you catch up against other fast decks that outpace you in the early turns, as well as synergising with the Nerubian Egg. It also is of great use against Grim Patron Warrior. Try cutting a Fist of Jaraxxus if you find the need for a board clear.

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