babbelbox indepth malygos druid guide sector one

My Greetings. I’m Babbelbox (https://twitter.com/Babbelbox_HS). I recently joined Sector One and saw this as a great opportunity to make a guide and share with you my knowledge of Malygos Druid.

Some of you might recognise me from my participation in the Summer Preliminaries, in which I was trying to qualify for a spot in the top 8.

Before we get started I would like to announce that I’ve started livestreaming on twitch : https://www.twitch.tv/babbelbox_hs and give a shout-out to “Guukboii” (https://twitter.com/ONE_Guukboii) for assisting me with the write-up of this guide.

Introduction

I’ve been an avid Druid player since the beginning of Hearthstone. What I enjoy most about the class is the aspect of having to think a couple of turns ahead to make your curve as smooth as possible with usage of Innervate and ramp cards like Wild Growth and Mire Keeper.

Due to my recent success with Malygos Druid and finishing #6 Legend in the October 2016 season, it motivated me to write this guide and share my perspective on Druid.

My main goal was to ‘try hard’ and hit #1, I peaked at #3 twice on the last day of the season. These were the results from my last days of laddering.

laddering babbelbox indepth malygos druid guide sector one

Decklist

Class Specific Cards
  • 0Innervate2 
  • 0Moonfire2 
  • 1Living Roots2 
  • 1Raven Idol2 
  • 2Wild Growth2 
  • 2Wrath2 
  • 3Feral Rage1 
  • 3Mulch1 
  • 4Fandral Staghelm1 
  • 4Mire Keeper2 
  • 4Swipe2 
  • 5Nourish2 
  • 7Ancient of War1 
Neutral Cards
  • 5Azure Drake2 
  • 6Emperor Thaurissan1 
  • 6Sylvanas Windrunner1 
  • 8Ragnaros the Firelord1 
  • 9Malygos1 
  • 12Arcane Giant2 

Innervate

One of the strongest cards in the game. The card that allows Druid to do ‘Druid things’. It is hard to imagine the class without it. This card is absolutely key against aggro decks, even more important than ramping with Wild Growth. You need to be able to seize the board as early as possible.

Wild Growth

A fantastic tool that allows you to put many expensive minions in your deck. Playing this card early in the game allows you to bring out threats faster than your opponent has the mana or cards to respond to. Followed up with a Mire Keeper this puts you at 6 mana on turn 4, which gives you an insane advantage against most midrange and control decks.

Living Roots

A very flexible card that synergizes greatly with spell damage. As the deck is not token based you almost never play it as 1-1 Saplings. It’s a really good removal card with Azure Drake and a great finisher together with Moonfire and Malygos.

Wrath

One of the most flexible cards in the game. It also synergizes with spell damage. You usually end up cycling the card in order to draw into your big cards but sometimes it can relieve the pressure from the opponent in the early game.

Fandral Staghelm

The MVP of the deck, as you run so many ‘choose one’ effects. A Fandral that is left unanswered usually wins you the game on the spot.

Mire Keeper

The number of Mire Keepers you have to put in your druid list has been up for debate for quite some time. I strongly Believe that two is the answer for this deck as you are playing many expensive minions. It is fantastic with Innervate as you basically turn the Innervate into a free 3-3, or compared to Wild Growth it’s a 2 mana 3/3.

Swipe

It is the only good and mana-efficient AoE removal that is available for the Druid. Every list runs two copies. If Living Roots and Wrath are good with Spell Power, Swipe is even better. The collateral damage doubles (1 to 2), which makes it so much better.

For example: it can kill a Thing from Below and all the totems on the board at once.

Nourish

As you ramp a lot and play cheap cards like Innervate, Moonfire and Living Roots, you are forced to put cycle cards in your deck. As you often ramp with the first Nourish you simply have to put two copies in your deck.

Raven Idol

One of the more interesting and complicated cards of the deck. You usually want one copy on turn 1 to increase the chance of getting either Wild Growth or Innervate. It also has the added benefit of making your Arcane Giants 1 mana cheaper. If you manage to combine the card with Fandral you create a lot of value. Most of the time you go for a spell because you always get a class card. When you pick a minion you can get neutral minions which might be absolutely junk. But sometimes it is justified to search for a minion when your hand is really spell-heavy and you have nothing to develop on the board.The main reason to go for a minion is because you want to add value to your deck in a control matchup. You will usually pick the most expensive one.

Feral Rage

A flexible card that is often used as a 3 mana 4 damage removal. But it can be key in matchups like Freeze Mage and Aggressive Hunters as a defensive option.

Mulch

This is probably the least flexible card of the deck as it sometimes sits idle in your hand. As it usually saves you in the mirror match you simply have to run one. It also combos well with Sylvanas Windrunner.

Moonfire

This card is solely put in the deck because you run Malygos. Malygos turns the card into a 0 mana Fireball. It also synergizes greatly with your Arcane Giants as it can help smooth out the curve. When you are 1 mana short of playing one you should not hesitate and just throw your moonfire away since it’s basically the same as having a Coin that deals 1 damage at that point. Sometimes it can also be used with Azure Drake to serve as a ‘Backstab’.

Azure Drake

One of the most efficient minions in the game. Ancient of Lore was nerfed a while ago but this card is like the mini-version of it, with the Spellpower as a bonus! Druid makes use of everything the card has to offer; it is simply fantastic.

Emperor Thaurissan

Absolutely insane when you can Innervate it into play since it’s basically the same as getting a coin for every card in your hand, and it makes ridiculous Malygos combo’s possible. In my opinion one of the best cards of the deck.

Sylvanas Windrunner

A more tricky card. It is mainly put into the deck because of its use in the Druid mirror. Dropping Sylvanas Windrunner into an Ancient of War can turn the game around. Sometimes you can combo the card with Mulch.

Ancient of War

Quite possibly the best taunt minion in the game. I run only one because of the lack of space in the deck. you can consider running two and cutting Sylvanas Windrunner when the Meta gets more aggressive.

Ragnaros the Firelord

It pushes a ton of damage versus Control Warriors. The fact that the card instantly deals 8 damage when you play it makes it really strong. Also, since the Big Game Hunter nerf, most decks have no good answers against Ragnaros the Firelord and even if they are able to remove the card you will have gained value from it.

Malygos

Your main finisher. It turns your Living Roots and Moonfires into nukes! Though sometimes it is just used to stabilize. When it sticks one turn you generally win the game on the spot, especially when you have a Swipe in hand.

Arcane Giant

Only after the release of this card people started to play Malygos Druid instead of Token Druid. Because you run so many spells you can sometimes even play an 8-8 for free! One trick that you should not forget is that it allows you to cycle your Wild Growth for free on turn 10 because you cast 2 spells for 2 mana.

General Advice

As this deck is all about ramping up you have to look for your Wild Growths, Innervates and Mire Keepers in the early game. Finding these cards is usually so important that you should throw away cards like Wrath and Living Roots that might seem efficient in the early game.

When you don’t find Wild Growth and Innervate it is basically always correct to ramp with your Nourish.
Even if you draw your Wild Growth it is still a possibility to ramp with your first Nourish when your hand is heavy or when you have a lot of cycle cards in your hand. As Hearthstone is a game that is all about percentages you sometimes have to assess how you rate the chances to draw the cards you need. Usually the Druid wins by quickly ramping up and then later on overpower your opponent with spell damage removals, big minions and Innervate plays.

When you are playing Druid you generally have a lot of options each turn. You have to carefully map out all of your options and assess which of them you feel is most efficient. Thinking about your curve is really important. Don’t simply use both Innervates to get a big minion out quickly if they might have an answer and then your next 3 turns will be completely dead. Some things just come with a lot of experience.
For example the best choice from Raven Idol clearly depends on the situation. You need knowledge of each matchup as some require you to adopt a specific game plan.

What’s important is that you need to think about where you will allocate your resources:
Do you use your Moonfires early on because it is convenient, or should you wait for Malygos? Should you play your Raven Idol now to find the card you need, or do you wait for Fandral Staghelm? Should you Innervate a certain minion in the Midgame, or do you wait for Azure Drake + Innervate + Swipe? Should you play your Living Roots on turn 1 to instantly start pushing damage or do you keep it for the Malygos combo?

Detailed Mulligan Guide

In this mulligan guide I want to distinguish playing first and having the coin as your mulligan can be quite different in both situations. This guide is aimed at ladder players so when you face a certain deck you have to mulligan for the archetype that you are most likely facing.

Hearthstone Warrior

Explanation

You don’t keep Raven Idol in this matchup as you want to pick a minion from it to increase the value from your deck or combo it with Wild Growth. Early game removal like Wrath or Living Roots is not needed, and if you draw Living Roots you NEVER play it on turn 1 to play around Ravaging Ghoul and Acolyte of Pain. Try to waste as little resources as possible. Hold on to your Innervates if you don’t have any follow up plays.

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Hearthstone Priest

Explanation

You basically can not lose this matchup if you ramp up and cycle enough. The priest will eventually run out of cards and then you take control of the game.

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Hearthstone Hunter

Explanation

Living Roots is fantastic in this matchup as it can efficiently deal with all the matchups and can help you to sometimes play around the secrets. You definitely play it on turn 1 as the Hunter has no efficient answer. You generally don’t keep Wrath as you want to play the matchup proactively. Try to take as little damage as possible as you will always outvalue your opponent.

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Hearthstone Rogue

Explanation

Wild Growth is MVP in this matchup. The Raven Idols will increase your chances of drawing one. Ramping up will heavily increase your chances to win.

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Hearthstone Warlock

Explanation

If you are able to Innervate a strong minion out you are usually in a fine spot. If you don’t draw it you have to be careful that you don’t let the Zoo get out of control. This is one of the hardest matchups.

manacrystal - hearthstone - sector one
Hearthstone Shaman

Explanation

Many people consider Shaman to be the strongest class in the game. I consider Druid to be on the same level. Almost everyone thinks that the Shaman is heavily favoured in this matchup but I tend to disagree. My stats in this matchup are amazing yet I think the matchup is quite even if both players know what they are doing. Don’t be scared to ramp up with your Nourish even if you are running out of cards. The additional mana can help you make power plays and you just have to assume that you draw well afterwards. Try to line up your threats as efficiently as possible. A well-timed Azure Drake + Swipe can do wonders.

manacrystal - hearthstone - sector one
Hearthstone Druid

Explanation

Ramping is super important in this matchup and the one with Wild Growth usually has the edge. If you don’t get Wild Growth or Innervate from Raven Idol or if you already have them in your hand you are generally looking for Mulch as it helps you to deal with the big threats. A well-timed Sylvanas Windrunner can sometimes turn around a very bad board position. The matchup is a lot harder to play than most people think and there is plenty of room to outplay your opponent. Getting experienced in this matchup will help you make better decisions.

manacrystal - hearthstone - sector one
Hearthstone Mage

Explanation

You have to remove the minions from the Tempo mage at all costs because the spells combo well with the minions. If you can keep the board empty you will usually come out on top.

manacrystal - hearthstone - sector one
Hearthstone Paladin

Explanation

This matchup is a bit tricky to play and quite different from every other matchup. This version of Druid should be favoured as we run Ragnaros the Firelord and Malygos. It is surprising how often you can finish the game with Malygos. The Paladins will generally only heal when they feel they are under real pressure. Keep an eye on a Sylvanas Windrunner combo to steal a minion like Cairne Bloodhoof, Ragnaros the Firelord or Tirion Fordring.

manacrystal - hearthstone - sector one

“I’m out of cards!”

You have made it to the end of my guide, I hope you liked it.
Please let me know if you have any tips or advice on things I could improve upon for future guides. Feel free to contact me on my Twitter (https://twitter.com/Babbelbox_HS) or mail me at [email protected].

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