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Mage Crafting Guide

Last updated on May 19, 2016 at 06:53 by Sottle 45 comments

Table of Contents

On this page, you will find a list of the most useful Common, Rare, Epic, and Legendary cards for the Mage class, in terms of crafting. We separate cards by their rarity; Common, Rare, Epic and Legendary, but each individual card is given a rating of priority. It is important to know that a Rare or Epic card that is given a "High" or "Top" priority rating should be crafted before a Legendary with a "Medium" rating. In fact, if you have 1,600 Arcane Dust to spend, crafting 2 or 3 Epics and a handful of Rares is usually better than spending it all on a single Legendary. If a card is not mentioned, you can safely assume that it is rarely, or never, used in the Constructed meta.

You will also find a guide on how to best allocate your gold or money between Classic packs, Goblins vs. Gnomes packs, and the Curse of Naxxramas adventure. This can vary greatly from class to class and has a great effect on how quickly and efficiently you can build a competitive deck.

1. Class-Specific Cards

In this section, we list the class-specific cards that are important for you as a Mage.

1.1. Commons

  1. Mana Wyrm - Priority = MEDIUM: Mana Wyrm is one of the strongest 1 Mana minions in the game and is a fantastic starting point for any aggressive or Midrange deck.
  2. Sorcerer's Apprentice - Priority = MEDIUM: Sorcerers Apprentice is a key card in most aggressive or Midrange focused Mage decks and is a key component of the Tempo Mage deck alongside Mana Wyrm and Flamewaker.
  3. Faceless Summoner - Priority = LOW: Faceless Summoner is an incredibly powerful minion that functions as a mid-game threat in many Midrange Mage decks. However, it can be comfortably replaced by many other strong mid-game minions.
  4. Mirror Entity - Priority = LOW: Mirror Entity is one of the best Mage Secrets, and can create very awkward situations for your opponent. However, due to the loss of Mad Scientist from Standard format, it is much less effective unless you are playing Wild.
  5. Ice Lance - Priority = LOW: Ice Lance is a key card if you wish to play a Freeze Mage deck, but is not currently run in any other popular Mage decks, making it a low crafting priority.
  6. Ice Barrier - Priority = LOW: Ice Barrier is a crucial card in the Freeze Mage deck, but outside of this, it is a very low value card that often has no significant impact on the game.
  7. Spellslinger - Priority = LOW: Spellslinger can be excellent in aggressive or Tempo based Mage decks, but it does not offer too big of an advantage over other available 3 Mana minions.

1.2. Rares

  1. Cult Sorcerer - Priority = LOW: Cult Sorcerer is a strong minion that can serve as a replacement in Standard format to make up for the loss of Mad Scientist.
  2. Blizzard - Priority = LOW: Blizzard is used in the Freeze Mage deck, but outside of this it is usually outclassed by Flamestrike as an AoE option.
  3. Polymorph: Boar - Priority = LOW: Polymorph: Boar is a very flexible card that can be used in both a controlling and aggressive fashion. However, it is often left out of Mage decks for more focused options.

1.3. Epics

  1. Arcane Blast - Priority = LOW: Arcane Blast is a component of Tempo Mage where it used to great effect with Flamewaker and Sorcerer's Apprentice. However, it can be substituted for other cheap spells such as Mirror Image.
  2. Ice Block - Priority = LOW: Ice Block is the key component of Freeze Mage, so if you are specifically looking to play that deck, this card is a top priority. However, the lack of versatility of this card means that you are usually better off spending your Arcane Dust elsewhere.
  3. Pyroblast - Priority = LOW: Pyroblast is used as a burst finisher in the Freeze Mage deck, but is usually considered too slow for most other decks. If you are building an Aggro or Midrange deck on a budget, and are missing some of the more impactful Legendary minions to function as finishers, Pyroblast can be an acceptable substitute.

1.4. Legendaries

  1. Archmage Antonidas - Priority = MEDIUM: Archmage Antonidas is a very common finisher in all kinds of Mage decks, ranging all the way from the aggressive Tempo Mage, to the hyper-controlling Freeze Mage deck. As such, it should be considered as a crafting option for a budding Mage player.
  2. Rhonin - Priority = LOW: Rhonin is a strong card and combines excellently with Archmage Antonidas amongst other things. However, it can be replicated for other high cost cards more easily than Antonidas can, making it a less significant crafting priority.

2. Neutral Cards

In this section, we list neutral cards that are always good to craft if you are playing Mage. Note that many of these cards will be usable in a wide range of decks across multiple classes. This means that crafting these cards over class specific ones is often a good idea if you plan to play a range of classes.

2.1. Commons

No neutral Commons are a specific crafting priority for Mages. The various Mech minions can be useful if you wish to play Mech Mage in Wild format, but generally you should simply allow your collection of Commons to fill out naturally.

2.2. Rares

  1. Azure Drake - Priority = MEDIUM: Azure Drake is a valuable card for Mage, combining much needed Spell Damage with the ability to draw a card. Azure Drake also has the added benefit of being a versatile and common card across many decks and classes.

2.3. Epics

  1. Doomsayer - Priority = LOW: Doomsayer is a common card in the Freeze Mage deck. However, it is possible to build the deck without Doomsayers and this card has little value in other decks.

2.4. Legendaries

  1. Ragnaros the Firelord - Priority = MEDIUM: Ragnaros is often a staple finisher in many decks. Due to the nerf to Big Game Hunter it is often a game ending minion if your opponent cannot answer it with a hard removal spell.
  2. Bloodmage Thalnos - Priority = LOW: Bloodmage Thalnos is a nice addition to many Mage decks. Much like Azure Drake, the combination of Spell Damage and card draw is very fitting for Mage's gameplan. However, in many decks Bloodmage can be replaced by a Cult Sorcerer, and it is not used in many other classes.

3. Gold Allocation Guide

3.1. Pack Type

The Grand Tournament was a weaker expansion for Mages, although they were offered a few cards that improve existing decks, there were not entirely new decks created as in Goblins vs. Gnomes.

Whispers of the Old Gods offers the strong Cult Sorcerer as well as some niche cards such as Cabalist's Tome, but did not bring a huge number of exceptional cards to the class.

Generally it is best to focus on Classic packs for a Mage player as this has the highest chance of opening key cards for the class.

3.2. Blackrock Mountain Adventure Value

Few cards in the Blackrock Mountain expansion are useful to a Mage. Emperor Thaurissan, available in the first wing, is key to Freeze Mage, while Flamewaker can bring good value to aggressive Mages, but is not available until the 4th wing.

3.3. League of Explorers Adventure Value

League of Explorers introduced the excellent Ethereal Conjurer to the class which fits well in a variety of different decks, but outside of this most of the cards offered were fairly weak for Mages.

4. ChangeLog

  • 19 May 2016: Updated to reflect changes in ToG and Standard format.
  • 02 Sep. 2015: Updated to include The Grand Tournament and Blackrock Mountain cards.
  • 19 Feb. 2015: Complete overhaul in format, and update for the Goblins vs. Gnomes meta.
  • 08 Sep. 2014: Adjusted Pyroblast's and Ice Block's descriptions and removed Tinkmaster Overspark.
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