Quick Brews: Elemental Quest Rogue (with The Caverns Below)

Rogue Decks April 4, 2017 2 16

In the Quick Brews series, I’ll make a single pre-release deck for each class and talk a bit about it. However, since it’s impossible to tell how the new meta will look like, those might not be the best lists or they might not even work at all. And so, I don’t recommend crafting the cards Day 1 – you should probably wait and see how the meta turns out!

Next deck utilizes tons of cheap minions and token generators to complete [card]The Caverns Below[/card]. I think that it’s the best way to approach the new Rogue’s Quest, but will it be good enough?

  • Nerfs Announced – Pro and Dev insights by Nuba!
    09/16/2017
    Coming late to the party, but my thoughts about the nerfs were very, very similar (http://www.hearthhead.com/news/analysis-of-upcoming-nerfs-and-their-effect-on-the-meta). I REALLY didn't get the huge community outrage. While I think that UI might use a slight nerf (like drawing 3 instead of 5, without changing anything else), I don't think that the card is that problematic. And all the basic/Classic nerfs are great, those cards were pretty much cancer and auto-include into the respective archetypes .They would NEVER go away, because it was impossible to print stronger cards than FWA, Innervate or Hex. I'd love to see more 100% staple evergreen cards rotating into Hall of Fame or getting nerfed. It would mean that the expansions will have a much bigger impact on the Standard. Right now the rotations have a nice impact on the Standard, but not enough. And the individual expansions without rotation have way too small impact. At the same time, they should promote Wild as the mode for people who want a more stable meta and seeing the same cards for the next X years.
  • Knights of the Frozen Throne First Impressions… By Nuba!!
    07/11/2017
    I've started writing full-time for HearthHead almost a month ago. I'm still browsing the HSP from time to time, but I'm afraid that I won't be able to write for this site anytime soon. You can still find my new articles on the Twitter if you're interested (https://twitter.com/StonekeepHS).
  • Hearthstone Quiz – Un’Goro Edition
    05/17/2017
    Oh yes, my bad. When I say "minion dies" I usually mean that you don't have an influence over it dying, as in "it dies on your opponent's turn". "You kill off your minion" is usually what I say when it dies on your turn. But you're right, I will add that it dies on the opponent's turn.
  • Hearthstone Quiz – Un’Goro Edition
    05/16/2017
    Yep, the card seems to "store" info about every spell used on it, no matter which player did. But it only gives back the spells to the current owner. Which is a bit counter-intuitive with how the card's worded, because it seems it should work only with the spells used by the current owner (it specifically says "YOU" in the card's text). But hey, that's Hearthstone, some interactions are pretty difficult to understand until you get deeper.
  • Hearthstone Quiz – Un’Goro Edition
    05/16/2017
    Sorry, fixed it. I've witnessed this interaction very early in the expansion so I must have messed it up.
  • Journey to Un’Goro Deck Recommendations #4
    05/11/2017
    The draw RNG is definitely huge in the new Secret Mage. But I still can't agree with it being more than in the old Tempo Mage, where draw RNG also mattered. The 50/50 roll at the start of the game alone was often deciding the games (getting turn 3 Flamewaker + Coin + Missiles clear was often a way into the game against Aggro). Then a lot of the early game depended on getting Flamewaker, 2 out of 30. Of course, you could still win the games without it, but he was - obviously - one of the most important cards in the deck. Secret Mage works quite consistently for me. While I didn't hit Legend yet (I've started playing very late this season, around 6th or 7th), I had almost 70% win rate between ranks 16 and 5 (with a few games with other decks in between). I've also checked it in the latest Vicious Syndicate Data Reaper Report and it shows Secret Mage as #1 deck at higher ranks and #2 deck overall (with just 0.15% less win rate than the #1). While Burn Mage is still relevant, Secret is the strongest archetype. Of course, if you draw only Secrets and no minions that support them or vice versa, the deck is pretty bad. Games aren't exactly unwinnable, but it doesn't perform well at all. But it shouldn't happen that often. With 2x Lackey and 2x Kirin Tor Mage (for which you might mulligan harder) and 6 sources of Secrets (4 Secrets + 2x Arcanologist), it's really easy to draw and combo them together. My guess is that you've been unlucky with your mulligan/early draws. I've also just finished writing the Secret Mage guide (for another site), I can give you a link once it's posted.
  • Journey to Un’Goro Deck Recommendations #2
    04/20/2017
    Yeah, it's crazy how many new cards Paladin is playing. But the deck really needed that, Midrange Paladin was completely dead in the last Standard rotation. I'm pretty happy with that, Midrange Paladin is a pretty fine deck to play with and play against.
  • Journey to Un’Goro Deck Recommendations #2
    04/20/2017
    Because the Druid's Quest is pretty bad. You start with one less card, which means that you get your ramp cards less consistently and Ramp Druid is WAY too slow without the early ramp. It already has a very strong late game so it doesn't need the Quest. What it needs is to have the highest chance to get to 7+ mana as soon as possible.
  • Journey to Un’Goro Quest Ranking
    04/18/2017
    I've seen a deck like that, but it didn't work well. It's just too slow. Quests are big investment - you start with 1 less card, which might not seem like a lot, but it decreases your win rate heavily. So the faster you can finish your Quest, the better it is. With this deck, you can finish it on turn 10 at best, but that's only if you draw Deathwing and can play it right away on turn 10. Realistically, since you won't mulligan for Deathwing (because that would mean that you have two dead cards), on average you should finish it around turn, I don't know, 12-14? Then one more turn to actually play the Quest - only then you start getting value. Then you need like a few more turns to get enough value from the Quest for it to be worth. Maybe 1% of my matches last that long. It's just not worth it. Not to mention that surviving so long with Warlock is incredibly hard. Now without Reno in Standard, Warlock's healing is VERY limited - I've played around with Handlock and surviving is very hard task, the deck would be much better if it had something like Healbot available (or un-nerfed Molten Giants). And you don't even start with dead card or rely on such late game win condition. It makes some sense in theory, but in practice it just won't work. It's inconsistent (since you rely on a single card to finish your whole Quest, which might be on the bottom of your deck), it's too slow and even if it works, it's not good enough. Like, let's say that you face Quest Warrior - he got Rag Hero Power 6 turns before you finished your Quest and you're probably dead at that point.
  • Guide on Amazon Coins outside US/UK/Germany (no VPNs)!
    04/12/2017
    Yes, if you do it with this method, you will have to pay the US price. Amazon will "see" that you're from the US.
  • Un’goro Brews: Cavern Rogue
    04/06/2017
    I think you need to re-read what's the requirement to finish the Quest Abhimannu, because this deck is not going to get you too far :D
  • Journey To Un’Goro Card Review #5
    04/06/2017
    The first version I've seen on HearthPwn didn't say "other card", just "card" - must have been a mistake on their part. It has been fixed, but I forgot to update this review. Yes, it's other cards, so the card is pretty poor. I agree that Mage didn't get treated too well this expansion - the cards are all over the place. A Control card (Meteor), some Elemental synergies (including a weak Legendary), some Secret synergy + Secret, some Quest synergy... But I disagree about the Quest. I think that it might replace Freeze Mage as the Mage's "combo deck". It's not crazy hard to survive when you run Ice Blocks, Frostbolts, Doomsayers, Frost Novas, Blizzards + you will get a lot more survival tools from the random cards you generate. The deck should be even better at surviving than Freeze Mage was. Sure, Freeze Mage wasn't popular on the ladder (because Pirate Warrior was just too fast, it still mowed the deck before it could do anything), but it was very powerful and commonly picked in tournaments. While sure, it's still hard to say, the Quest Mage (however it will be called) seems like a pretty solid tournament deck and maybe a Tier 2/3 ladder deck.
  • Quick Brews: Taunt Control Warrior (With Fire Plume’s Heart)
    04/05/2017
    I thought about making a Tempo Warrior in the new expansion. My main reasoning was that Malkorok, which is already a great tempo card, is getting even better. Cursed Blade, Argent Lance, Poisoned Blade, King's Defender and Charged Hammer are leaving Standard. Charged Hammer was probably the best one of those 5 and it still wasn't among the best options. Cursed Blade leaving means that there is no way to "lose the game on the spot". Instead, we get Vinecleaver, Obsidian Shard and Molten Blade - Molten Blade is basically a blank, 1/1 weapon, but still much better than Cursed Blade most of the time. Obsidian Shard is average as a 3/3 and Vinecleaver is insane. After the rotation there is over 80% chance to get something okay (worth at least 2-3 mana) and over 50% chance to get something good (worth at least 4 mana). Malkorok was widely used in Tempo Warrior early in WoG. That said, I'm not 100% sure whether the Quest will be worth it in Tempo or Dragon Warrior. The thing is, you'd have to put A LOT of Taunts into your deck to finish it in a timely manner. Those decks generally want to close up the game around turn 10, which means that you'd have to play like 11-12 Taunts to complete the Quest by 10 quite consistently. And during that time, so for the majority of the game, you'd be 1 card down. So here's the question - is the quest reward good enough to justify making your deck worse by putting tons of Taunts AND being 1 card down for most of the game? Of course, it will be fun trying - that's why I love new expansions. So many things to try, so many decks to experiment with, even if most of them will fail you can still play them for a while before the meta settles down :)
  • Quick Brews: Taunt Control Warrior (With Fire Plume’s Heart)
    04/05/2017
    Unless I'm missing something, I don't think that Grommash will be necessary with the Quest reward as a finisher. You can't both hit your Hero Power and activate Grom in the same turn, so you're gaining like +2 damage by playing Grom. Sure, there are some scenarios where the opponent's board is full and you have no Brawl (so you don't have a high chance to hit the face) or when he's at 9-10 health as compared to 8 or below, but at the same time Hero Power as a finisher has its merits - you can play it alongside FWA to hit for 11, you can sometimes roll the hit through the Taunt etc. I really think that Hero Power alone will be enough to close up the games, so the rest of the deck should focus on removal and survival IMO. I think that Zoo will be quite popular after rotation, so Ghoul is too good to cut if that's the case.
  • Quick Brews: Elemental Quest Rogue (with The Caverns Below)
    04/05/2017
    It's really hard to say at this point, but I think that Discard Zoo might be really powerful. Other than that, I suspect that Combo Mage might be the new "hated deck of the meta", because it can be incredible if it works right. However, it will probably take some time to find the most optimal list, unlike Zoo which is much easier to build :p
  • Quick Brews: Control Dragon Priest (with Shadow Visions)
    04/05/2017
    Primordial Drake isn't an amazing card. Actually, it's a pretty mediocre card. But it's really hard to find good Dragons now to put into your deck. Another option would be a huge Dragon like Deathwing, Malygos or Onyxia, but those don't really fit this list either. So in the end I've decided that because I add Primordial, I can cut Holy Nova without really sacrificing too much (because I remove 1 AoE and add another one), it might be an okay choice. We'll see. In the end I'm still not sure whether this will work out, but I think that Drakonid Operative alone is so powerful that I just need to try building a deck around it.
  • Quick Brews: Combo Mage (with Open the Waygate Quest)
    04/05/2017
    Yes, you're right - Portal + Doomsayer will be a guaranteed board clear. Let's say that your opponent Taunts up and you can't get past that wall, you can play Portal + Doomsayer and then Alex + 2x Giant next turn. If your opponent has no big AoE clear then you can just win the game like that. Another example might be him threatening lethal on the board - if Doomsayer + Portal is your only out, you'll at least save yourself. However, the combo would work much better in a more board-oriented deck. This one has pretty much one win condition - combo. While sometimes you can pull extra value from Tomes and cards like that, the fact that you can't guarantee a hit with your Giants might mean that you lose the game to cards like Brawl or Twisting Nether or something. I'd have to say that, just like most of the combo decks, the deck might be even more complicated than it looks like. That's one of the reasons why I enjoy combo decks so much - they're hard to master, but it feels so good when you pull off those cool plays :)
  • Quick Brews: Un’Goro Ramp Druid (with Jungle Giants Quest)
    04/05/2017
    Yes, you're right, it's still a bit hard to remember every card rotating out (deck builders on different sites still have them as viable Standard options, because well, they technically are until the expansion comes out :D). So that most likely makes BGH the best option. Swipe/Wrath will deal with smaller minions and BGH with the biggies. Minions in between will be the biggest problem, then (e.g. 6/6).
  • Un’Goro Full Reveal Roundup!
    04/03/2017
    I feel like Taunt Warrior was bad because it had no way to close up the games. It was always great against Aggro, but against slower decks it had to play a bunch of understated minions (the fact that they had Taunt really didn't matter). Now it gets way to close up the games. This Quest is exactly what such a deck needs. A win condition, a very solid one. Since slow decks generally don't flood the board, the new Hero Power should finish games quite quickly - either it hits all the big minions and you outvalue your opponent or it hits the face for 8 every turn and you just need to survive for a few turns. There is no way to counter your new Hero Power - imagine a Control mirror where one player has Rag on the board for the rest of the game. It can't end well for the other side. Sure, Warrior has to pay 2 mana, but it's not that big of a deal - he would press that Hero Power anyway most of the time. I honestly think that the deck might be pretty powerful. However, it's still a meta call. The deck should be strong against Aggro due to sheer number of Taunts (you just mulligan your Quest away against Aggro, you don't need it at all) and against Control because the Hero Power will dominate the late game, but it might struggle against Midrange decks. The decks that can get past the Taunts quite easily, but are aggressive enough to not give Warrior enough time to finish the Quest. Like, it might actually be pretty bad against the Midrange Hunter, especially the one with +2/+2 Hero Power. Or something like a Midrange Jade Shaman. Also, Jade Druid with the good opening hand should also win the game. It really depends on whether Warrior finishes the Quest before Druid gets to the big Jades or not. So yeah, I'm not saying that the Quest will 100% work, but you can't really judge it by the past "Taunt Warrior" performance, because those two decks don't even look similar. The new deck will be just a Control Warrior with a bunch of Taunts instead of other minions and no stupid "Taunt synergies" like Bolster.
  • Journey To Un’Goro Card Review #5
    04/01/2017
    I also like Control Warrior, the meta just doesn't feel right without that deck. It looks strong thanks to the new quest so I hope we'll see it more often. Un'Goro comes out this Thursday (Friday in Eu) so we don't have to wait too long :)

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Playing Hearthstone since September 2013. Infinite Arena player. Hitting Legend rank on EU each season, with multiple high Legend climbs during the season and top 200-300 finishes.