December 6, 2016
Table of Contents
Gadgetzan Brews: Jade Rogue N’Zoth
Hello! For those that haven’t met me before, my name is Fireflyer and today I bring you my first brew of a deck that I think may prove to be strong enough to battle with the best in the upcoming weeks where people are still figuring out deck strategies. I combined the new power of the Jade Lotus’ Jade Golems with the tricky sneaky tactics of Deathrattle N’Zoth Rogue to create a fun deck that abuses Deathrattle and also has a good time stealing cards and making some fat Jade Golems. So without further delay, let me introduce you to my deck brew: N’Zoth Jade Lotus Rogue.
Overview: Jade Lotus Rogue
With the introduction of Mean Streets of Gadgetzan, three new gangs have shown up each with their own gang ability. The Grimy Goons (Paladins, Warriors and Hunters) got cards that can buff minions in your hand which I have seen being used in Paladin decks that use Small-Time Recruits and Smuggler's Run. The Kabal (Mages, Priests and Warlocks) received more Reno Jackson style cards like Inkmaster Solia and Raza the Chained which have produced lots of Reno themed decks. But the gang that caught my attention the most while the cards were being leaked was the Jade Lotus which is comprised of Rogues, Shamans and Druids.
The Jade Lotus introduced a mechanic that revolves around the creation of Jade Golems. Jade Golems can be summoned as a side-effect of Jade Lotus cards and start off as a 1/1 but grow in size with each extra summon, an extra +1/+1. Initially, the card that got the most attention was the new Druid card, Jade Idol, due to its ability to keep yourself from ever reaching fatigue. During my 50 pack pre-order I opened up an Aya Blackpaw and knew immediately that I wanted to try a Jade Druid deck. After a few attempts and deck revisions, I came to a conclusion that Jade Idol isn’t as great as people thought it would be. When combo’d with Gadgetzan Auctioneer or Fandral Staghelm it’s not bad at all but when you don’t have those extra effects the card by itself is far too slow. The long-term idea of having 8/8 or 9/9 Jade Golems is nice but the build up to those sizes is a long journey for Druid decks and relies on the Druid getting the few cards that can make Jade Golems and playing them in a perfect curve.
I took a moment to check out the remaining Jade Golem cards and tried to figure out which class would end up being the most effective at summoning Jade Druids and I found my answer: Deathrattle Rogue.
Only four Jade Golem cards exist for Rogue: Jade Shuriken and Jade Swarmer which are Rogue cards, along with Jade Spirit and Aya Blackpaw which are available to all the Jade Lotus classes. Of these four, two of them create Jade Golems using Deathrattle. By getting multiple uses of those Deathrattles using Unearthed Raptor, Barnes and N'Zoth, the Corruptor we can make some huge golems around the end of the game. The card Journey Below also helps us get more Jade Golems by giving us extra Jade Swarmer and Aya Blackpaw cards.
You may notice that in my version I’ve taken out most of the components of Miracle Rogue that exist in the regular N’Zoth Deathrattle Rogue deck. To make room for the Jade Golem cards, I cut most of the combo cards and spell-based cards like Preparation and Gadgetzan Auctioneer and made the deck mostly minion-based with lots of Deathrattle minions. To do this I also altered the deck to add in more Deathrattle minions that are popular in the control versions of the N’Zoth deck, like N’Zoth Paladin. Normally you wouldn’t see Sylvanas Windrunner or Cairne Bloodhoof in N’Zoth Rogue but in this heavy minion version I think they work great, especially with Barnes and Unearthed Raptors.
First let’s go over my decklist and the card choices I made and the section after will go over the pieces that I removed from the regular N’Zoth Rogue deck as well as one piece you might not expect me to keep out of the deck, Jade Spirit.
Decklist: Fireflyer’s Jade Rogue
Before Gadgetzan was released, N’Zoth/Deathrattle Rogue was considered somewhere around the 15th-20th top deck to be played. Compared to Miracle/Malygos Rogue it just didn’t do as well as having lots more spells instead of N'Zoth, the Corruptor and Deathrattle minions.
My decklist is to the right but here are the changes I made from the typical N’Zoth Deathrattle Rogue deck to my current version:
I took out the combo heavy stuff like Preparation and Tomb Pillager coins which help trigger Edwin VanCleef, SI:7 Agent and Gadgetzan Auctioneer to put in the Jade Golem cards as well as more Deathrattle minions from the N’Zoth Paladin decklist.
Jade Golem Cards
Jade Swarmer: This is the staple card of the deck. It makes Jade Golem cards and it can be brought back with N'Zoth, the Corruptor or copied with Unearthed Raptor. Using these guys you will easily make 4-6 golems in a match not including all the other Jade Golem effects. I like to mulligan for these early and use them to trade with decks like Pirate Warrior but against control decks I like to keep them in Stealth while I wait for a good trade with a spell to help or for Unearthed Raptor.
Jade Shuriken: This card is hard to combo into in this deck since I took out most of the cheap costing spells but I can still manage to get off the combo most of the time by saving up lots of removal for one turn. There isn’t much to say other than try to get this used early so you can build up your Jade Golem size.
Aya Blackpaw: Wow, what a great legendary for Jade Lotus. She comes into play and brings usually by this time a 3/3 or higher and then trades really well with 5 attack, and dies really well with 3 health, dropping another big golem. Just like Jade Swarmer she can do all the Deathrattle tricks with Unearthed Raptor and Barnes. I play her as soon as I can but one thing you should look out for is Polymorph and Hex type cards because they will negate her Deathrattle and stop her from coming back with N'Zoth, the Corruptor. Try to play around it if you can see it coming but if they’re something like Druid or Paladin, drop her aggressively.
Backstab: We’ve all seen Backstab before. Don’t use this early like on Turn 1 or Turn 2 to remove something quick. Let it attack maybe once so you can use it to trigger combo cards like Eviscerate and more importantly Jade Shuriken. Combining this with Jade Shuriken on Turn 3 will give you 4 damage to an undamage target which is like a Shadow Bolt while also getting your Jade Golems started.
Eviscerate: Not much to say, try not to use this for just 2 damage, make sure you’re getting the combo damage for maximum use. Even if something a little annoying comes out on Turn 2, either wait or use another card to take care of it so this can remove bigger things or help combine damage to kill bigger things.
Sap: There’s only 1 in the deck but I could see it going up to 2. Don’t use it really early, you want to use this and also drop down Deathrattle minions in the same turn so that next turn when the minion you sapped comes back down, you can trade in your minions and get the Deathrattle effects while also killing theirs.
Fan of Knives: You can sometimes use this card as a board clear if you’re against maybe Paladin but most of the time you will use it to draw a card and also deal 1 damage to help kill a minion, like combining with Eviscerate to deal 5 damage and draw a card.
Shadow Strike: Good large removal for cheap mana, I know it’s obvious but sometimes people forget, it’s only to undamaged minions like Backstab so don’t miscalculate and try to Backstab + Shadow Strike. Good card to start combos like Eviscerate and Jade Shuriken to kill big minions.
Bloodmage Thalnos: Good Deathrattle minion that lets you use Backstab for 3 damage on Turn 2 or combos with Eviscerate for 5 damage on Turn 4. Combo it with a spell to get enough damage to kill a minion and then get a free card after he dies. Not the best minion to get back with N'Zoth, the Corruptor but at least he gets you another card.
Undercity Huckster: Comes out early and trades well with early minions along with the cheap removal spells like Fan of Knives or Backstab. Will give you surprise cards like two days ago when I got Sacrificial Pact against a Reno Warlock player and he used Lord Jaraxxus.
Infested Tauren: This comes from the Paladin version of N’Zoth which uses these guys to soak up damage and stall. They also help a lot at the end of the game when you use N'Zoth, the Corruptor and you get some Taunt minions to soak up more damage. They also replace themselves really well when they die which gives you more minions to keep trading with. I find these guys so important that it makes me want to put in something like Abomination because Taunt Deathrattle is so effective against the aggro decks, but I feel like Abomination comes just a little too late.
Xaril, Poisoned Mind: Another great Deathrattle legendary. He gives you some great Toxins that can do stuff like deal 2 damage for extra removal, Stealth your important minions like Aya Blackpaw so she doesn’t get Hex‘d and you can make her attack something to get killed, or my favorite returning a minion to your hand and making it cost 2 less which I use on N'Zoth, the Corruptor to get another Battlecry and fill the board again. I love this bug.
Cairne Bloodhoof: This also comes from the N’Zoth Paladin decklist which is more control based. He’s slow to come out so I’m not sure if I want to keep him much anymore with all the Pirate Warrior aggro going around, but when he does come out and stays out, he’s great with Unearthed Raptor. He’s also fun to get with Barnes. He’s just a powerful card by himself so you will usually play him quickly to get him out and controlling the board. Just make sure to keep watching out for Hex and things like that.
Sylvanas Windrunner: This is another control card from the N’Zoth Paladin list but this one I wouldn’t consider taking out like I do with Cairne Bloodhoof. She’s just too strong when she comes into play and if you can use Unearthed Raptor with her, like I sometimes do on Turn 9, you can flip the board on your opponent.
Journey Below: This card is amazing for this deck. It can help you find more Jade Golem cards like Jade Swarmer and Aya Blackpaw. It can help you find Toxin cards with Xaril, Poisoned Mind. And it can also help you find Taunt if you’re starting to get too low on health with Infested Tauren and Chillmaw. And of course when you cast N'Zoth, the Corruptor you get it back. Perfect deck synergy. Also, great to start combos.
Unearthed Raptor: Best part of being Rogue and abusing Deathrattle. Use this dinosaur to copy your best Deathrattles and get great value. Best played on Turn 3 after Jade Swarmer so you effectively get a 3/4 and a 2/2 at least. Other than that, I like to save them to use with the legendary Deathrattles, don’t waste it on Undercity Huckster.
Barnes: Play this fast! Just kidding, I like to play him as fast as possible but there’s one thing to keep in mind: There are 5 non-Deathrattle minions, N'Zoth, the Corruptor, 2 Swashburglar and 2 Unearthed Raptor. If you don’t have any of them in your hand or in play, maybe wait so you can get better odds. But playing him early is the best most of the time, he is good as a 3/4 that can trade and kill small minions and usually gives you a good Deathrattle that will come back with N'Zoth, the Corruptor when it dies.
N'Zoth, the Corruptor: THE Old God himself. Most of the time if you have him in your hand and you can cast him, you should, because the deck does a good job of playing lots of Deathrattle and getting them back. Sometimes it’s okay to wait if you don’t have any Legendary Deathrattle minions yet, but most of the time getting your whole board is worth it.
Swashburglar: He can get you randomly good cards and he trades early against Pirate Warrior. Also great for starting combos.
Alternate Choices: Regular N’Zoth Rogue
These are the cards that were removed from the regular N’Zoth Rogue deck but they do have value and with the right tweaks your own playstyle might be able to find a place in the deck for them by taking out things you don’t like using.
SI:7 Agent: I really want to use these guys and I had them in earlier in the deck, but it’s hard to combo them sometimes and they were a little slow against Pirate Warrior. I took them out for Swashburglar because he comes out fast and also helps combo, and sometimes the cards he can get me will work against my opponent better than just SI:7 Agent.
Tomb Pillager: I like Tomb Pillager because he’s a big Deathrattle that trades VERY good because of his high attack but he also felt slow in the current meta and the Coin doesn’t help this deck as much as it does the Miracle combo deck, more explained below.
Dark Iron Skulker: Regular N’Zoth Rogue has one because it’s great for board wipe but I think that’s more against Midrange Shaman than anything. If you think you need more board wipe, then use this guy.
Harrison Jones: Good against weapons but slow and also doesn’t do much else besides destroy one weapon and draw cards. Helpful against Pirate Warrior but I can’t think of a spot that I want to give up, but it might be worth making a spot.
Preparation, Edwin VanCleef, Gadgetzan Auctioneer, Tomb Pillager: If you like the Miracle Rogue combo-style deck you might want to put these back in and use maybe Counterfeit Coin but there’s so many cards that you need to work together and I think you either pick Jade Golem as your extra stuff with N’Zoth or you take the combo Miracle Rogue stuff with N’Zoth.
Why no Jade Spirit?
Jade Spirit: The reason I don’t use this card is because the deck isn’t about JUST Jade Golem. The goal of the deck isn’t to make the biggest Jade Golem possible, it’s just to use it effectively as an extra trick. The golems you make with just Deathrattle effects and Jade Shuriken will be big enough to kill your opponent. The problem with Jade Spirit is that it feels like the 2/3 is pointless and rarely does anything useful. At least you can aim the Jade Shuriken damage and of course the Deathrattle minions can be abused for multiple effects. Alone, Jade Spirit just doesn’t give enough value like the other Jade Golem cards do. A Jade Golem deck doesn’t have to have all the Jade Golem cards.
Out of 54 matches, this is my current win rates against other decks around Rank 15-10.
54% winrate at 29-25 but this was also over 3 different deck revisions so some of the losses were because of bad choices, haha. This was also right during the Gadgetzan release so it’s not a good example of my rates, I just wanted to add it to show you that I was going pretty effective until Pirate Warrior started to get popular. (Probably around 8 warriors in my last 10 matches….)
Druid: 88% 7-1
Mage: 67% 2-1
Paladin: 50% 2-2
Priest: 70% 7-3
Rogue: 100% 2-0
Shaman: 50% 3-3
Warlock: 67% 4-2
Warrior: 13% 2-13
As you can see besides Warrior I was doing great. Almost every other Jade Golem deck wasn’t as good as mine at making golems except that ONE Druid who went Turn 1 Coin + Innervate + Fandral Staghelm and then Turn 2 Jade Idol + Jade Idol. From there it was just huge golems all day. I also had a few problems with control Shaman but that’s just because I wasn’t sure of what cards they were going to use and one loss was because of a really good Evolve.
I am having a great time with this deck. It’s lots of fun to see how crazy you can get with the Jade Golems and it’s a lot of fun playing with Barnes and Unearthed Raptor in a Deathrattle deck. I also love playing N'Zoth, the Corruptor and seeing my whole board fill up with dangerous minions that WANT to die. I don’t play Rogue much but I’m going to be playing Rogue for quite a while now, I think.
This deck seems to be working fine getting me up from Rank 15 to Rank 10 so give it a shot if you’re tired of playing Pirate Warrior and want something different. I guarantee you’ll have some fun.
I hope you like my deck! If you want to watch me play it sometime this week follow me on Twitch at Twitch.tv/ItsFireflyer and catch me streaming or keep up with my Hearthstone antics on Twitter @HS_Fireflyer.
Leave me some comments below, tell me if you’ve tried your own Jade Golem build, either Shaman or Druid or even your own Rogue version! Let me know if I’m forgetting any important cards that should go into the deck. Or try the deck out and tell me how it worked out for you! I’ll be waiting.