Cyclone Miracle Mage Deck List Guide - Rise of Shadows July 2019
This guide contains detailed Strategy, Mulligan, and deck-building information to help you play Cyclone Mage in The Rise of Shadows expansion.
Cyclone Mage has emerged as one of the most poweful decks in the game and the most effective shell for the Mountain Giant and Conjurer's Calling package. While its win condition usually involves landing Conjurer's Calling on a huge minion, it has a wide variety of different strategies for reaching this point, making it one of the more difficult decks to play in the current metagame.
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Cyclone Miracle Mage Mulligan Guide
Cyclone Mage is a deck which plays very differently depending on whether it is going first or second due to the extra hand-size provided by The Coin. This will inform your Mulligan strategy more than the matchups you face.
- General Mulligan (keep regardless of whether you are going first or second) — Luna's Pocket Galaxy, Sorcerer's Apprentice, Arcane Intellect, Mana Cyclone.
- Mulligan when going first — Banana Buffoon. Sandbinder can be a good keep if you do not expect your opponent to be playing an aggro deck.
- Mulligan when going second — Mountain Giant, Conjurer's Calling, Elemental Evocation.
As Cyclone Mage is a combo-oriented deck, the guidelines above will not be sufficient on their own. It is important to also consider the synergies between the cards in your opening hand. If you have Sorcerer's Apprentice or Mana Cyclone, for example, it is generally correct to keep Ray of Frost alongside them, as it combines very strongly with both cards. Similarly, Elemental Evocation is too inconsistent to always keep when going first, but its value becomes much higher if you already have a Mana Cyclone. These are just two examples of Mulligans that vary depending on the situation. It is impossible to list all such considerations here; the best way to improve your decision-making in this area is to play a large number of games with the deck and develop your own sense for what works.
Cyclone Miracle Mage Strategy
Cyclone Mage games play out very differently depending on whether you are going first or second, as mentioned above. This is because of the different speeds at which you'll be able to play Mountain Giant.
Because you will have fewer cards in hand when going first, it is usually not possible to power out a Mountain Giant + Conjurer's Calling combo until late in the game. This means that the best strategy is often to play aggressively for board. A turn 2 Sorcerer's Apprentice followed by a Banana Buffoon and two copies of Bananas cast on the Apprentice, for example, is one of the fastest openings in the game.
In cases where you have Mountain Giant in hand, you may need to be more conservative in order to preserve some hand-size. This is generally matchup-dependent. Against an aggressive deck such as Bomb Hunter, you can usually consider the Mountain Giant to be a dead card, and prioritize using the rest of your hand to fight for the board. Against slower opponents like Control Warrior, it becomes much more important to get the giant out early and begin applying pressure, so look for ways to add cards to your hand with Arcane Intellect, Banana Buffoon, and Mana Cyclone.
Luna's Pocket Galaxy can be game-changing when going first. If you have it in hand, you should feel much freer to play your cards for maximum tempo, as you no longer need to hold cards in hand in case of a Mountain Giant draw later in the game. Try to play Luna's Pocket Galaxy as soon as possible; it provides most value if played in the early stages of the game, when there are more turns remaining to draw into discounted Minions.
When going second, the focus shifts to getting Mountain Giant out as early as possible. Even without hand-size increasers like Arcane Intellect, it is possible to play Mountain Giant on turn 4 if you play passively with your Hero Power early on. If you do have the ability to add cards to your hand, it is possible to land Conjurer's Calling on a Mountain Giant absurdly early in the game — if you have a full hand, The Coin, and an Elemental Evocation, a full combo can be played on turn 4.
Against Aggro, you will need to play defensively until you can use Conjurer's Calling to create an unanswerable board-state and win the game. In this context, "play defensively" does not mean hold back resources; on the contrary, getting must-remove cards like Sorcerer's Apprentice and Stargazer Luna onto the board quickly will slow your opponents down by forcing your opponent to spend time and resources answering them.
Remember that Khadgar is not only useful in combination with Conjurer's Calling; it can also be used alongside Mirror Image to flood the board with Taunt minions, preventing a large amount of face damage and enabling major swing turns with Sea Giant.
Against Control, it is important to maximize the amount of value you get out of each of your major threats. This is because the amount of big Minions in the deck is actually quite limited, and if your opponent is able to remove all of them, you will quickly run out of things to do. You should think carefully about whether to play Mountain Giant on its own or save it to play on the same turn as Conjurer's Calling; many control decks struggle to remove an 8-Health Minion on turn 4 or 5, and if you identify a spot like this, do not hesitate to get Mountain Giant onto the board and begin attacking for 8. Otherwise, it is generally best to be patient; removing two 8-health Minions at once is much more difficult than removing one without specialized tech cards such as Supercollider.
Archmage Antonidas can be a very important card against control decks as the Fireballs he generates cannot be interacted with by your opponent. If you were able to connect two or three times with a large minion at any stage of the game, you will often find that this extra burn damage is enough to seal the win. Plan for this by saving cheap spells such as Ray of Frost to use with Antonidas rather than trading them in for random Spells with Mana Cyclone. It will usually take more than one turn to cast all of the Fireballs created by Antonidas; you will usually need to cast them over multiple turns while stalling with defensive cards like Frost Nova. Be sure to consider your opponent's likely healing options before committing to a line like this.
Cyclone Miracle Mage Card Swaps
- Against Control — Add 1x Alexstrasza and 2x Astromancer for 1x Sandbinder, 1x Zilliax, and 1x Frost Nova.
- Against Aggro — Add 1x SN1P-SN4P for 1x Sandbinder.
- 08 Jul. 2019: Deck added.
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