New Standard – Round 1 Decks
Hello everyone and the nerf patch just hit the servers! We are currently experimenting with the new altered cards and testing different decks that involves and doesn’t involves these cards.
The metagame is evolving and today’s article is all about what is happening in the first 48 hours of Post-nerf metagame!
The reason this article is so important is that it gives you guys an insight on what has been going on in the high end of the game, as well as some cool deck lists to play during your new season’s ladder grind!
I know you all love Decklists, but I’ll just with some insights and playtesting results!
Insights and Initial Results
It has been a busy day for us people who work playing Hearthstone, there has been quite a lot to test and we already have some amazing results to share.
First, the elephant in the room, Yogg-Saron, Hope's End nerf was felt a lot more than we initially thought: The card is currently being played by literally noone. I still can’t quite pinpoint the ideal behind simply not using the card, as it mathematically can still be game changing, but the possibility of doing absolutely nothing kind of broke Yogg Saron’s legs in the competitive scene up until this very moment.
Second comes the Abusive Sergeant nerf. The card is somehow still seeing play in the deck that really wants his effect – Zoo. However, simple “aggressive” decks that would run him just as an “good aggro card” like Aggro Paladin, Hybrid Hunter and Aggro Shaman ceased to exist because of this change. We are likely to see more aggressive early game class cards for Paladins and Hunters being added to the next expansions because of this change.
Execute card was overly felt by Tempo-oriented Warrior decks. Dragon Warrior and Tempo Warrior all suffered a great hit from this, as expected, and the result is the diminished number of Tempo Warrior decks in the ladder currently.
Call of the Wild nerf was somehow strange for me to analyze, in fact I haven’t gone too much further in analyzing it other than seeing people using it as a 1-of, and I have to say that it doesn’t seem as much appealing as an 8-mana card. Call of the Wild is still a good card, but something tells me that you have to build around it stronger, because it won’t save you as often. So what have I been doing with Hunter in the past time you ask? We’ll be talking about that later this article!
Much like Call of the Wild, Tuskarr Totemic hit was stronger than anticipated. In fact, people started to cut Tuskarr Totemic from their decks in favor of other cards. Currently, the common build being used runs double Mana Tide Totem and Barnes with no Tuskarr to be found, we’ll discuss that list later this article as well!
The nerf on Yogg-Saron was felt mostly on Token Druid, which was one of the prime Yogg-Saron lists pre-nerf. However, the deck doesn’t seem to have suffered from it as much as I thought it would, at least not until right now. Truth is, Token Druid is still a very consistent deck that draws a lot of cards and can consistently win games against everything but the decks that got hit by the nerf bat – Meaning that, despite the removal of such a strong anti-aggro tool that Yogg-Saron was, Token Druid ultimately became better post-nerf simply because the deck’s prey is weakened.
Less Zoo on the ladder means Token Druid can have an easy time playing against Midrange-Control style of decks, where it can easily shine when played against.
Beware, however, that one of Token Druid’s strongest opponents, Tempo Mage, became a lot more common after the nerf, and the deck’s possible future ascension might undermine Token Druid’s power.
The deck became a much better post-Yogg Druid option than Malygos based Druid lists not only because it is more proactive and relies less on Yogg-Saron, but also because it plays a lot better against Control-ish Midrange decks.
I played this deck with good results on the ladder, but nothing spectacular. I have to say, however, that this deck remains the most fun and skill intensive top tier deck on the ladder.
And this is the version of Hunter that I have been playing on the ladder recently. I have been using this to actively prey on players playing Midrange-Control style of decks with great success. Fact is, with the decrease in the overall aggressiveness of the game we are now able to play slower versions of Hunter without worrying too much about getting trained, which leads us to the possibility of playing what possibly is the strongest N'Zoth, the Corruptor we can cast today on Standard.
To discuss a little about the deck’s mechanics, Azure Drake makes up for the ultra-lacking 5-drop slot on Hunters while not only cycling itself and being sinergic with Quick Shot and Kill Command, it also enables us to use The Curator, which gives us steam to compete even with the most perfect of the Control curve.
Despite running a lot heavier than other Hunter Versions, and not being as explosive, this deck still packs a punch and can win against a huge number of current metagame threats. I could even go ahead and say this deck performs much better against Control decks than pre-nerf Call of the Wild versions used to.
Midrange Shaman continues to be a top tier deck, much like we all thought it would.
The unexpected though, was that Tuskarr Totemic ultimately didn’t make the cut in the modern Midrange Shaman lists, even though those lists still run Thing From Below and other Totem sinergy cards such as Thunder Bluff Valiant.
Truth be told, playing the deck feels a lot fair now, as the deck is a lot less susceptible to RNG and more to skill.
At the end of the day Shamans still have a very powerful curve, even without Tuskarr, and that won’t change until the rotation comes, which means that even without running Doomhammer explosive combo with Rockbiter Weapon and becoming a Spell Damage based deck a lot more than before the deck continues to be a force to reckon with.
And these, combined with a couple non-perfected Tempo Mage and a hundred bad decks were all that we saw today. The lists posted here are the ones that have had the highest success possible, and the ones I would recommend you, my beloved reader, to play during this week until we have better ones!
What I am enjoying the most about Hearthstone is that it is constantly evolving together with the community, the developers are learning more and more what it means to make a great game. Let’s hope, however, that their learning curve is shorter than ones of other Blizzard games and they end up evolving as fast as the game gets popular – which is very fast.
PS: This is my favorite Metagame this game has ever had, let’s hope it stays this way and Yogg doesn’t make a resurgence.
Love you guys!