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Legendary Battlecry Mage Control Wild Deck

Last updated on Jan 13, 2016 at 14:49 by Sottle 14 comments

Table of Contents

Battlecry Mage is a fairly unique deck that aims to outvalue the opponent over the course of a long game by repeatedly gaining resources from Discover mechanics. Despite this, it is also quite effective against Aggro decks due to the high number of Anti-Aggro cards in the deck. It was pioneered by Team Liquid's Dog and can prove a very effective ladder deck due to how unexpected it is.

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. Legendary Battlecry Mage Control Wild Deck

Our deck costs 2,320 Arcane Dust and it is made up of the following cards.

Mage Cards Neutral Cards

2.1. Mana Curve

0
0
9
7
3
7
2
2

3. Strategy

Battlecry Mage is a unique deck that aims to repeatedly outvalue the opponent by gaining additional copies of Discover cards, or high value cards like Sludge Belcher. These Discover cards can then be activated twice with Brann Bronzebeard, leaving you with an incredible amount of resources in your hand. It is a very effective deck against both Aggro and Control, since the extra resources are naturally excellent against Control decks, while many of the cards you can gain extra copies of, such as Sludge Belcher and Antique Healbot are fantastic at walling Aggro decks out of the game.

Your early game turns will vary heavily depending on the deck you are playing against. Against Aggro decks, you should aim to simply develop any minions you can in order to fight for the board. However, against Control, it may be better to play the game slower, and hold on to cards like Jeweled Scarab until they are able to be played with a combo card for more value. Mad Scientist is also tricky to play against Control, since you will most often get a Duplicate from it, which you will want to engineer onto a strong target like a Sludge Belcher or Ethereal Conjurer. This plan can be difficult if your Secret is pulled into play too early, since it will prevent you from playing other minions.

Since the deck does not play too many efficient early game creatures, you will likely fall behind at some point in the early- or mid-game. This is where tools like Frost Nova and Doomsayer come into play to function as an excellent stopping point for your opponent. Since this buys you a free turn, it is an excellent point to then start developing slow minions like Ethereal Conjurer on an empty board.

The goal of the deck is to survive and exhuast your opponent of resources by picking up multiple 3-for-1s (or better) with board clears like Doomsayer, Blizzard, and Flamestrike. At this point you can take over the game when they are not able to mount enough pressure by hoarding resources in your hand with the Discover minions, as well as Echo of Medivh and Duplicate. The difficult of this is that you also need to be able to sustain your own life while doing this. Ice Block is an excellent tool to buy you a guaranteed turn where you know you are safe to develop whatever you need to. Outside of this, you will need to be able to correctly evaluate whether to make a defensive play, or a more proactive one for value. Remember when doing this that your life total is a resource that you can expend to put yourself in a better position overall. For example, it may be correct to pass up what may look like a decent Blizzard or Flamestrike in order to draw more cards, or set up a Duplicate for a later turn. This will lead to you taking more damage, but may gain more value from your AoE cards, and spend your Mana more efficiently so that you have the resources in the later turns to continue fighting.

The deck plays two copies of Polymorph as well as a Big Game Hunter. Because of this, you should aim to use your Polymorph on difficult midrange minions that you have no answer to due to the lack of Fireball in the deck. Even using Polymorph on a Piloted Shredder is sometimes the right play, since you are safe in the fact that you have Big Game Hunter for a huge threat later in the game. Be careful against decks that commonly run high value threats with less than 7 health like Ysera however. Against these decks, holding on to a Polymorph is usually wise.

Part of the skill of the deck is choosing the right cards from the Discover mechanics. While it can be tempting to always pick the highest impact card from Ethereal Conjurer, this deck is often not looking for high burst cards like Fireball or Flamestrike, and often more niche choices like Flame Lance are more appropriate to deal with a Dr. Boom that you expect on a following turn. When playing a Discover card, carefully evaluate the state of the board by using the Hide button, and evaluate what you and your opponent are likely to do over the next couple of turns before making your choice.

The deck plays no particular win condition, and wins simply through attrition and card advantage. Because of this, it is important to recognise the point in the game where you need to stop aiming to stop the tide of your opponent's advances, and instead start to gather resources in your hand and pressure them back. Once you have identified it is time to start the offensive, then you should start to make your Brann Bronzebeard plays, and gather an overwhelming amount of resources.

3.1. Synergies & Combinations

Brann Bronzebeard is a key card in the deck and allows you to gain two cards from your Discover minions, as well as allowing you to heal for 16 with Antique Healbot.

Duplicate can allow you to gain additional copies of key minions such as Ethereal Conjurer, Antique Healbot or Sludge Belcher, depending on the game situation.

Frost Nova plus Doomsayer is a fantastic board clear, and one of your best methods of halting early aggression.

3.2. Mulligans & Matchup Specific Strategies

Your Mulligan process will differ greatly depending on whether you expect your opponent to be playing a fast or slow deck. Against faster decks, you will need to look for cards like Mad Scientist, Explosive Sheep, and Frostbolt in your opening hand in order to fight for the board effectively. However, against slower decks, you can afford to be much greedier with your Mulligans and can look for card draw, as well as key cards for the mid-game like Sludge Belcher, or Frost Nova and Doomsayer. Mad Scientist is still a strong keep in slower matchups though, even if it can make your Duplicate plays a little awkward.

Your general strategy is also markedly different against Aggro and Control. Against Aggro you will need to use your cards when you can in order to fight the board, even huge value cards like Brann Bronzebeard should be played on curve if it helps you to fight for the board effectively. Against Control, you need to aim to use your health as a resource and be extremely greedy with your card use, maximising the value you get from all of your removals and board clears.

3.3. Card Swaps

One Frostbolt can be cut from the deck for a second Explosive Sheep if you are encountering a lot of early minion flooding decks like Secret Paladin.

Big Game Hunter can be cut from the deck in favour of a second Arcane Intellect or an additional Frostbolt or Explosive Sheep depending on the choice above.

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