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N'Zoth Control Warrior Standard Deck

Last updated on Oct 07, 2016 at 09:01 by Sottle 15 comments

Table of Contents

The following build of Control Warrior is a N'Zoth, the Corruptor variant that packs in a huge late game win condition in the form of the 10 Mana Old God. It plays out a little more proactively than most builds on Control Warrior but is still a very slow late-game deck that is equipped to answer the threats of aggressive decks while having enough value to outlast Control decks.

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. N'Zoth Control Warrior Standard Deck

Our deck costs 11,600 Arcane Dust and it is made up of the following cards.

Warrior Cards Neutral Cards

2.1. Mana Curve


3. Strategy

This build of Control Warrior plays in a slightly more proactive style than most. It is well equipped both to sit back and play the Control game with removal spells from hand, and to try and contest the game on the board through minion presence. Playing it successfully requires you to adapt your play style to different matchups.

In the early game turns, Fiery War Axe is key as it always is with Warrior decks, the efficiency of this card can easily help you navigate the early-game turns and start to build yourself a platform for success. With this deck however, you still have multiple effective options to cover yourself if you do not hit a War Axe. Slam and Bash can both be used to address must-kill minions such as Sorcerer's Apprentice.

Starting around turn 3 or 4, you will often need to make the decision between developing a minion of your own, or sitting back and using removal cards like Bash from your hand. This decision will depend greatly on the deck you are facing. Against very minion heavy decks like Zoo, it is often important to develop the board presence of something like an Infested Tauren to save your removal for more dire situations later on. Against spell focused decks like Tempo Mage however, you should focus on removal of the minions that they do have, since they are well equipped to be able to remove the minions that you try to contest the board with and continue to push damage with their existing minions.

The important skill with this deck is to recognise when it is appropriate to use each of your cards. It is important to accept that not only your removal spells are resources, your life total is as well. If you are in a comfortable position, you can choose to hold on to a Slam, Bash, or Execute for a more appropriate target, or hold back to try and set up a better Brawl. If you immediately use each of your removal spells at the first opportunity presented, you will quickly find yourself running out of resources.

This balance continues throughout the game and dictates much of the play in the deck. As the slower deck in almost any matchup, your job is simply to assess the situation and react to it in the appropriate way. Your goal is to stop the game from progressing as much as possible where as it is always your opponent's job to force the initiative. Use your removal too quickly, and your opponent will be able to outvalue you with their late-game threats, but use it too slowly and you will find yourself running out of life. Always assess this balance when choosing to use a removal spell.

Justicar Trueheart is another key minion that can be a single-handed win condition in this deck. Once you have the Tank Up! Hero Power available the equation of Health vs removal becomes a lot more straightforward, since the opponent has to commit so many resources into racing you for damage. This will cause them to overextend their large minions into your Shield Slam and Execute as well as commit too many minions into a Brawl. Brawl in particular is a huge card against many decks, but especially Zoo Warlocks and various Shamans, try to be as greedy as possible with your Brawls, especially if you have Tank Up active, as once they're gone, your opponent has no reason to fear them anymore.

Elise Starseeker is a fantastic tool to help this deck outlast other Control decks. Without access to Elise, this deck would find itself lacking in power against other slow decks in the extreme late-game turns. In many super slow Control matchups, the game often progresses all the way to fatigue, with each player having a few useless cards left in their hand that have never found an appropriate use. The Golden Monkey is an excellent tool to turn those useless cards into impactful threats that can finally overwhelm your opponent. It is important to wait on playing the Golden Monkey until you have used all cards in your deck that have important roles to play in Control matchups. Against faster decks, Elise will primarily function as a 3/5 minion that can help you to fight for the board, as the game will rarely progress to the point where you draw all the way through to the Golden Monkey.

N'Zoth, the Corruptor is another potential win-condition in the deck that may seem to be at its most powerful in Control matchups, but can also be a final back breaking push for the board once you have stabilised against Aggro decks. Control decks will often have large scale AoE effects like Brawl or Twisting Nether which it will be difficult to force them to use before you play your N'Zoth. Because of this, the key minions in these matchups are the Infested Taurens and Cairne Bloodhoof that will still retain you a board presence after these large AoE effects. Against Aggro and Midrange decks, you will simply need to look out for your window of opportunity to make a counterattack with N'Zoth. It can be easy to slip into a pattern of stalling and removal, but the key turn is often the one where you take a small risk in order to make the push for the win by dropping N'Zoth, even if it is only for a couple of extra minions. If you do not die immediately after playing N'Zoth against a more aggressive deck, you will almost always be positioned to win.

Finally, Grommash Hellscream is another card that is often used somewhat counter-intuitively in this deck. Classicly Grommash will be used as finishing burst damage to end the game in combination with Slam or Revenge. Although that usage still comes up in this version, Grommash is also very commonly used as a board control tool to remove a minion from play and stick a large intimidating body to the board.

3.1. Synergies & Combinations

Grommash Hellscream can be combined with Revenge, Slam, or in some cases Shield Slam in order to create burst damage to the opponent.

Justicar Trueheart and Shield Block can be used to increase the effectiveness of your Shield Slams.

Sylvanas Windrunner is an excellent setup for Brawl on a following turn, as if your opponent ignores it, you have a Brawl with a guaranteed favourable outcome.

3.2. Mulligans & Matchup Specific Strategies

Fiery War Axe is a must-keep card in almost every matchup, but outside of this, your Mulligan strategy will vary enormously on what kind of matchup you are expecting to face.

Against early minion focused decks like Zoo, Secret Paladin and Aggro Shaman, alongside the essential Fiery War Axe and Ravaging Ghoul, Slam and Bash are also strong tools to keep in your opening hand.

Against decks that need to keep Control of the board throughout the game to maintain pressure on you such as Zoo and Secret Paladin, you can consider keeping a Brawl in your opening hand, since it is the best card in your deck for coming back against these matchups. Against more outright damage based decks like Face Hunter and Face Shaman however, keeping Brawl will be too slow and can cause you to miss key removal options to limit damage in the early-game. Brawl is also an excellent keep if you are playing against a Warrior and expect it to be a Grim Patron variant.

Against more Midrange focused matchups, Bash and Execute will be your key cards, perhaps even more important that Fiery War Axe in some matchups they will not have early threats very consistently and you will instead need to plan immediately for the mid-game turns with your mulligan.

In Control matchups, such as against other Warriors and Priests, Justicar Trueheart is a core card, and is perhaps good enough even to keep in your opening hand alongside at least one other solid option. Getting Justicar down early is key to helping you outlast your opponent in the extremely long games that two Control decks commonly play out. Early game cards like Slam are nowhere near as effective in these matchups as they are against aggressive decks. These are the matchups where Elise Starseeker is key to turn any leftover useless removal cards at the end of the game into high value threats to finish your opponent.

3.3. Card Swaps

Tech cards like Harrison Jones and Tinkmaster Overspark can be added to the deck in place of cards like Slam or Ironforge Portal. Harrison is clearly strong in a weapon heavy meta, while Tinkmaster can help you to win Control matchups by transforming huge threats like Sylvanas Windrunner or C'Thun to make sure they cannot be revived by N'Zoth or Doomcaller.

4. ChangeLog

  • 06 Oct. 2016: Deck added.
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