S23 Part 1 – Omelette Du Fromage
We are now a few months into League of Explorers and it has been a while since we saw some innovation. Nonetheless we still have plenty of innovators in the Hearthstone scene that are trying out all sorts of builds and are constantly refining popular decklists. The difference of replacing a few cards can translate in achieving a higher win rate than before and achieving the desired #1 Legend!
Early in the season GoSuForEver, a Spanish player that is well known in the competitive scene took rank 1 legend with freeze mage. This isn’t the first time we see freeze mage performing very well, especially early in the season when a lot of agro is being played on ladder.
Freeze mage stalls the game out with the use of freeze spells, while cycling as many cards as possible. After dropping Emperor Thaurissan or Alexstrasza, your opponent can now be killed over the course of two turns. Your strategy mainly depends on your hand, if you have the ability to stall for a long time you can do so, but don’t forget to keep track of the damage you have in your hand, often you will have enough burn or will be able to generate enough burn with Archmage Antonidas to kill your opponent.
Secret Paladin, Zoo, Face / Midrange Hunter, Paladin, Rogue, Renolock, Priest
Control Warrior, Patron Warrior, Midrange Druid
This hybrid taunt / combo druid was invented by “Dengxu” one of the oldschool ladder gods, who came back after a year’s break and took #1 with a revamped druid build. The deck only runs one combo piece but has tons of heavy taunts to stall out the game or establish board control.
Taunt Ramp Druid is a deck that relies on cheating the mana curve with Wild Growth / Innervate. This deck only runs one Force of Nature + Savage Roar combo. You sacrifice the burst most druid decks nowadays run with double combo, for board control. When only running one combo the goal of this deck shifts more to controlling and building up the board. Nevertheless, you can shift into an aggressive stance when you have the combo pieces in hand. This deck is very flexible; you can win by board control or through bursting down your opponent. Look at your current hand and decide the strategy that’s best for your game.
When facing Aggro :
Keep Wrath and also when you’re face a deck with a high priority early game drop.
Additional Tips :
Consider keeping Piloted Shredder if you have some ramp/coin.
Living Roots is always a keep as well.
Against Paladin it is advisable to keep a Swipe so you can counter his Muster for Battle.
Keeper of the Grove is also a good keep against Warlock, Hunter and Paladin.
We haven’t seen this guy around for a while, stickier than shade and contests the board from early on in the game.
2x Sludge Belcher:
Great 5 drop, fits this defensive oriented deck well.
2x Ancient of War:
A card that doesn’t see a lot of play at the moment. Can be used to bait out your opponent and create a board in your favor.
The deck still requires some extensive testing to define the win rates. This deck should however have similar win rates to the double combo variant.
Several players have been experimenting with this type of zoo, not running Doomguard and focusing heavily on building the board and playing a cheap Sea Giant. This deck also does not run Flame Imp but runs Argent Squire instead, to have a better matchup versus aggro. It’s a different take on zoo and certainly worth experimenting with.
Your goal is to take control of the board very early and using that to snowball into a win. You want to be “flooding” the board in order to get the benefits of Gormok the Impaler or make Sea Giant very cheap to be played.
Keep control of the board and trade your weaker minions. When you are already far ahead you can just start cashing in the damage. Try to play around board clear abilities such as Hellfire or Consecration make sure to leave your Nerubian Egg / Haunted Creeper unpopped if possible.
If you are not on the coin this combo might be too slow, mulligan for something more stable. Keeping Imp Gang Boss on the coin is also reasonable.
Provides great trades versus other agro decks, divine shield makes this a sticky minion.
Almost standard in every zoo deck nowadays protects your board for at least one turn in order to set up lethal or cash in on a bunch of damage.
Can really give you an edge in the mirror. It’s also good versus Secret Paladin that tends to have multiple minions on board constantly.
Favorable matchups :
Druid, Tempo Mage, Aggro Shaman, Control Warrior
Freeze mage, Dragon / Lightbomb Priest, Patron, Renolock, Malylock
Xzirez is a high legend player and also a deck innovator, that is known for his Midrange Paladin builds. This time he experimented with a very unique paladin build, that relies on buffing up your minions and taking over board control.
Xzirez has promised to release a full guide about this deck on hearthpwn, if he hasn’t yet I encourage you to ask him on stream http://www.twitch.tv/vbsof!
“Omelettadin” plays much like zoo, take control of the board and make favorable trades, go face whenever you are far ahead. Keep board wipes in mind although Nerubian Egg and divine shields will help you fight against most types of board clear.
When on the coin keeping you can keep double 2 drops.
Divine Favor is also a good keep versus: Warrior and Priest.
Super valuable card in this deck when facing control.
Keeper of Uldaman:
Great card with all the board flood.
Seal of Champions:
Provides favorable trades or just straight up burst damage.
Usually a silence has already been baited out by a buffed up target which makes Tirion a lot better in this deck.