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Warlock Zoo No Naxx/BrM/LoE/Kara Wild Deck

Last updated on Nov 08, 2015 at 19:12 by Sottle 1 comment

Table of Contents

This guide outlines a fast, aggressive Warlock deck. At an extremely low dust total of 3,240, it is one of the cheapest decks that can compete at the highest ranks of the ladder as well as in a competitive setting.

Losing access to the Hearthstone Adventures makes a big impact on Zoo, since so many of their highest quality minions like Haunted Creeper, Voidcaller, and Imp Gang Boss came from Naxxramas and Blackrock Mountain. Without them, the deck is weaker, but still highly playable.

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. Warlock Zoo No Naxx/BrM/LoE/Kara Wild Deck

Our deck costs 3,240 Arcane Dust and it is made up of the following cards.

Warlock Cards Neutral Cards

2.1. Mana Curve

0
10
8
3
6
2
0
1

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.

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 an Argent Squire you will want to place the Squire 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 Mistress of Pain, and Silent Knight 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 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. 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.

Imp-losion is included in the deck to make up for some of the power lost by the nerf to Soulfire. The power of Soulfire was that you could play multiple minions onto the board, and then Soulfire for 0 Mana and an empty hand. Imp-losion simulates this effect by dealing damage, and also putting multiple minions into play for you.

Finally in this deck you have Doomguard, which is your power card and primary finisher. Although this is a Charge minion, it should not be viewed purely as a finisher. Playing a Doomguard to make an immediate favourable trade on the board can often be the game-winning play, especially if it consolidates a board of multiple other small minions. Do not be too afraid to play Doomguard before emptying your hand if it creates you a significant advantage, but of course, playing the card without discarding anything is the ideal scenario.

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.

3.1.1. Card Swaps

Zoo decks have an incredibly flexible list of cards. The version we have published is the one we believe to be the best, however there are numerous cards that can be considered.

Zombie Chow can be used in place of Leper Gnome, sacrificing some aggression for a more consistent early game.

Elven Archer can be used in place of Leper Gnome to increase your winrate against other aggressive decks like Face Hunter.

Hellfire is an inclusion that can help you catch up against other fast decks that outpace you in the early turns. Try cutting a Defender of Argus if you find the need for a board clear.

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