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».ben.    7437

I am pleasantly surprised that Stealth Rogue might be a real thing.

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Carbon    1884

The amount of people that coin out their patches  turn 1 when they draw it is crazy.

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wonderPreaux    1408

Dragon Priest Day 2: Idk if I'm just running a lot colder or if it's the ladder, but I've dropped in win rate from 70% to 65%, which is disheartening. Notably, I've continued to lose a handful of games due to bricking out and drawing no dragons all game. I'm running 9 dragons, which my cursory research had noted as at/above par, so I'm not sure if I'm needing extra dragons or if I'm supposed to prioritize Dragons entirely over other relevant cards like Cleric/SW:P. Has anyone played a lot of Dragon Priest/decks who can comment on mulligan priorities?

 

That said, there were some more neat happenings:

Day 1 - R10 -> R7

 



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TFW you get to hold all the board control cards, even if you're just borrowing them.



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Dragon Priest mirrors occasionally run long, but this was probably the best one. Each of us went through roughly 90% of our deck, 3+ Operatives and a Nefarian each, before I finally clinched it with Inner Fire. An Inner Fire that I was immensely nervous about him discovering, especially since his last play was Brann+Kabal. 



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Inner Fire has been really good at letting me amp up the pressure, grab trades, or burst people down. I'm enjoying it quite a lot. Surprisingly flexible too, I've rarely been at a loss for finding a way to make it useful, even if all it does is give me a trade I wouldn't have gotten otherwise because I can't deal 1 damage.



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Absolutely meme'd

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».ben.    7437

I'm by no means very good, but if I open a dragon, I nearly always keep it (unless Pirate or Shaman). In particular, I always keep Twilight Drake if it's my only dragon. Your best case scenario 1 through 3 play basically requires 1 dragon, so I don't think it's too crazy.

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wonderPreaux    1408

Day 3: I've tried to mulligan a bit more conservatively lately, I seemed to be doing a bit better as I wasn't out-and-out "bricking" as much. Unfortunately, I've hit a severe stumbling block and am sitting at Rank 6 after an uninspiring 24-25 run that briefly brought me to Rank 5 before I fell back down. The main problem I seem to have is that, oddly, I'm just not getting the aggro or midrange advantage that I figure I should. I get out-drawn so much in the early game where I feel like I have to hit the 1-2-3-4 curve with an activator just to have a chance, or hope for some blowout SW:Death against Shaman's 7/7.

 

Shaman feels particularly difficult because it's so hard to get an opening that really works well against them; they have such a wide rand of opening that they can pull ahead with whatever spell/weapon/golem your hand might not be able to cover. Moreover, Aggro and Midrange can use all the same challenging openers but then you don't know until you scout with Drakonid OP or run into Hex/Lava Burst what you really have to plan for. I'm not sure if I'm just doing something really wrong here, but it feels like it's too easy for them to just run away with the game with runner-runner removal spells/weapons backed by any of their excellent opening minions.

 

I'm not really sure how'd I'd make it to legend if I'm basically flipping coins on whether I'm going to be able to play the game or I'm just going to pass the first few turns and slowly get ground to pieces when I try to take the board. IDK if I'm playing these matchups badly, but it feels like I'm really missing something. With that in mind, I wanted to see if I could tune up the deck a bit, since I figure if I'm complaining a lot about getting out-drawn or bricking, I should go to the source of my draws at the least. If you guys have the time, I'd appreciate some feedback on this Dragon Priest list:

 

Dragon Priest V1 (72W/50L)



1 Inner Fire

2 Northshire Cleric

2 Power Word: Shield

2 Twilight Whelp

2 Netherspite Historian

2 Shadow Word: Pain

2 Wyrmrest Agent

1 Brann Bronzebeard

2 Kabal Talonpriest

2 Shadow Word: Death

1 Defender of Argus

2 Twilight Guardian

2 Azure Drake

2 Blackwing Corruptor

2 Drakonid Operative

1 Holy Nova

1 Book Wyrm

1 Dragonfire Potion

 

First, some explanation for the list. Overall, I started out just wanting to jam Dragon Priest and do Operative shenanigans. Since I was trying to run down the middle of the Patches/Kazakus gauntlet, my underlying philosophy was that I just wanted to curve out and not have a card that was totally dead on one side of the matchups. This is reflected in the use of middle-of-the-road cards like Defender of Argus, it's taunts against Aggro, and it gets dudes out of AoE against Control. Inner Fire is the same way, it's reach against Control, but then it also serves as a tempo swing against Aggro. The goal was to try and have a fighting chance against basically anything I ran into. For the most part, that's about what I got, but I do much better against Control than Aggro, which surprised me.

 

I was initially worried that not running cards like Entomb or Ysera would leave me hurting in control matchups as I ran out of resources or lost hard to Sylvanas. That hasn't been my experience though; Brann + Operative/Historian is fantastic since it gives me a stream of high-quality cards without rapidly moving me to fatigue, and Sylvanas has simply been irksome, but not the blow-out I assumed it would be. Also, Northshire + PW:Shield basically stole games from Reno decks because I got to be a Warlock that can play better removals and Drakonid OP, sweet stuff. As I alluded to earlier, though, aggro decks are way better against me than I thought.

 

I feel like it's way too punishing to miss a 1-drop or coined 2-drop, and Shaman/Warrior have more 1/2-drops than me and a plethora of ways to support them with weapons and spells. Shamans options to curve into midrange, get value with Flametongue while SW:Pain is strained by Trogg/Golem already, or use its superior proportion of burn spells to close games or grab more tempo are all especially imposing circumstances. I think that the main thing I need to do is shift the deck a bit more towards contesting aggro, and rely on that early curve to let me aggress against control and curve out to high value minions to exhaust the control decks under a shorter time frame. That said, here are some change I had in mind.

 

Cards I'm considering removing:



Inner Fire/Defender of Argus: While I talked a lot about Inner Fire's usefulness before, and Defender gives me a 4-drop and some much-needed reach in dealing an extra 1-2 damage, I feel these cards are increasingly suspect when I consider why I'm really winning or losing games. Since it's so important for me to simply not fall behind on board, cards that only let me leverage the board presence I've managed to stick feel somewhat "win-more". While this wouldn't let me steal control games with Inner Fire burst, or lock out control by suddenly having two taunts, being able to have a stronger curve might solve those problems just as well by steamrolling the control to the point I don't need burst or stabilizing me against aggro sooner so I don't need to try and hit the Defender to not lose to weapons/charge.

 

Kabal Talonpriest: Along the same vein, this is another card that doesn't really impress me unless things were already going well. Missing a 1/2 drop makes it very hard to use this card, and it's often been Spider Tank against aggro opponents who pick off all my minions with War Axe or Lightning Bolt etc. While Blackwing Technician wouldn't be significantly better against aggro, the extra health might make the difference now and then, especially if Talonpriest would've been blank anyway.

 

Northshire Cleric: This is mostly something I'm thinking about given how poorly it feels playing Cleric against aggro. It dies to Small-Time Buccaneer and Totem Golem, pecking at a Trogg/Patches and then healing seems cool but is damnably low tempo, and generally Cleric is too slow/small to be effectual (though having a 1-drop to get in Defender is useful). The problem I run into is that Cleric is really effective against some control decks (though it does often need a PW: Shield) and it's not as though there are other 1-drops competing for the slot given that I already have Whelp in the deck. At this point, I'm not quite sold on removing it, but idk if it warrants its two slots in the deck.

 

Cards I'm considering adding:



Acidic Swamp Ooze: I feel like this is something like the inverse of my Inner Fire pick in that it has an obvious role against Aggro, and then has some lighter use against Control by picking off Gorehowl or Atiesh. Since I'm having trouble against Aggro, I feel like this one is an easy path to consider.

 

Twilight Drake/Priest of the Feast: Along the idea of keeping the curve formidable, I think these might be worthwhile picks. The former is impressive as it boasts roughly Yeti-esque stats (notably, being able to deal 4 damage to Tomb Pillager, Totem Golems is something special given how most early Priest cards push 2 then 3 damage) and activates dragons while not needing an activator itself. Priest of the Feast is more of an Aggro counter, but 6 health is quite a lot and it can make a Power Word/Shadow Word follow up game-winning. It can also synergize with AoE by forcing a lot of trades from the opponent.

 

Some sort of AoE: Again, having problems with Aggro and Midrange leaves me seeking anti-aggro answers. The high cost of Dragonfire Potion makes me hesitate to say that it should be the pick, since I'd often be close to dead against Aggro anyway, though it does perform well against Midrange Shaman and Rogue. Shadow Word: Horror or Holy Nova seems like reasonable candidates, while the latter most follows my original "least dead cards across the board" intentions. Double Holy Nova is also a common option I've seen in other lists.

 

Potion of Madness: For this one, I'm especially seeking some crowd-sourced knowledge. It seems like an interesting way to contest early Aggro and solve Priest's "can't deal 1 damage" problem. My hesitance comes from the idea that Shaman can just lean on me with Totem Golem and that Potion seems like it would interact awkwardly against a Buccaneer opening. Has anyone played with Potion a lot and willing to speak for/against it?

 

In addition to advice on my current list, what to add and remove, I also have some draft ideas for V2, hopefully to try and finish the legend run. I'd appreciate some thoughts or recommendations on which path to consider. Sorry for the wall of text, I don't usually play Priest and I wasn't expecting to hit the wall so hard here.

 

V2 - Anti-Aggro Focus



2 Potion of Madness

2 Power Word: Shield

2 Twilight Whelp

1 Acidic Swamp Ooze

2 Netherspite Historian

2 Shadow Word: Pain

2 Wyrmrest Agent

1 Brann Bronzebeard

2 Blackwing Technician

2 Shadow Word: Death

1 Twilight Drake

2 Twilight Guardian

2 Azure Drake

2 Blackwing Corruptor

2 Drakonid Operative

2 Holy Nova

1 Book Wyrm

 

V2 - Balanced Midrange



2 Northshire Cleric

2 Power Word: Shield

2 Twilight Whelp

2 Netherspite Historian

2 Shadow Word: Pain

2 Wyrmrest Agent

1 Brann Bronzebeard

2 Blackwing Technician

2 Shadow Word: Death

1 Twilight Drake

2 Twilight Guardian

2 Azure Drake

2 Blackwing Corruptor

2 Drakonid Operative

2 Holy Nova

1 Book Wyrm

1 Dragonfire Potion

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».ben.    7437

Sounds like you may just be hitting the Dragon Priest wall. This is a reductive look at it, and is by no means gospel, but vS suggests:

 

 

Aggro shaman isn't a good match up, and as you see more, I think it should be expected that dragon priest loses more.

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wonderPreaux    1408
17 hours ago, .ben. said:

Sounds like you may just be hitting the Dragon Priest wall. This is a reductive look at it, and is by no means gospel, but vS suggests:

 

 

Aggro shaman isn't a good match up, and as you see more, I think it should be expected that dragon priest loses more.

It might be the case that the deck is just too underpowered in the early game, as weird as that is to say for a deck with 1 mana 2/3s and 2 mana 2/4 taunts, to boast a truly high percentage against the Patches decks. It is competitive, though, and I guess that is the balance I'm trying to strike, be competitive against both sides of the meta. I did end up opting for a slight adjustment, less than either of the proposed builds in my earlier post, cutting the Inner Fire and Defender for Acidic Swamp Ooze and Potion of Madness. My limited testing of it has been promising tonight, as I've managed to eke out some nice edges with Potion against Aggro and Control decks, while Swamp Ooze has been great at cutting out weapons and played a fairly good role of vanilla 3/2 otherwise. 

 

It could have just been a bad run of luck for me, though, since it occurs to me that every other time I've gone and tried to run a single deck straight to legend there was at least one night where I would just hemorrhage stars. I guess I just wasn't expecting to run into that so early. Also, I just noticed this, but apologies to all for the mess of a post last time with all the extra screenshots, I didn't realize ever one I loaded would make it into the post even if I didn't place them somewhere. Here's some more happenings from the last few nights, hopefully formatted properly...



Day 3/4/5 - R7 -> R6 -> R5 -> R6 -> R4

 



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I've been running into the Dirty Rat/VLPS?? Control Warrior thing lately, about as evenly as Aggro Warrior. This is pretty nice, given that the matchup feels very winnable as the Dragon Priest and diluting the Aggro encounters is quite pleasant. Smashing on their 5-drop with SW:P is cool, you can pull tons of value with Brann (exempting random Rat blowouts, but the conservative play that serves you well here inherently stacks the odds in your favor), and it's even nicer running into it when I'm packing an Ooze for the Gorehowl. 



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Epic gardening/tree-care triumphs over the magic OTK



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I'm pretty sure I'm supposed to be the Aggro against Renolock. But hey, why not just steal a shit ton of control cards, right? This was made partially possible by Potion of Madness on the opposing Brann, that and Thalnos were clutch steals tonight. Though I also managed to find a cheesy Block-pop against Reno Mage that stole the game since I knew with Operative that the Reno was still in their deck. Games against Control are pretty neat with this deck.



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Oh, ok.



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Two 7-for-1s against the control deck? Sure, I'll take it. Almost makes up for the Sac-Pact.



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And if the night hadn't been good enough, closed it out the with the casual value-pulls. 



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The last Inner Fire dunk for the now, RIP. Also, this is only the third or so time I've encountered Murloc Paladin, I'm still waiting on the sweet Operative > Anyfin interaction... someday...

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Ammit    5159

a couple months since msog came out and i have to say i'm having a lot less fun than i did right before it came out

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».ben.    7437

Hopefully the balance changes will make people like HS again...

...but probably not.

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wonderPreaux    1408

RIP Freeze Mage. Also RIP stars/ranks I will lose as I will probably still try to play the deck.

 

As an aside, while Azure Drake rotating out is probably a good choice in terms of centralization alone, I worry the 6 or so classes that could justifiably play it won't all find a good substitute for it. It seems like it could be really easy for classes to get left out in the cold. Moreover, imo it's not as though Drake is like Dr. Boom, where it was very very powerful and having little competition for its slot; its not as though Drake is oppressively powerful (though a lot of Drake counterplay involves Drake boosting Wrath, Arcane Blast etc so... there is that...)

 

Last rotation was pretty exciting, so even though I'm sad to see a lot of these cards go, I'm optimistic for the next rotation.

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DarkBlaze557    2106

Honestly, I had a lengthy discussion with some friends about how Azure Drake needed a nerf because of how popular it's been since beta. Sure, there aren't many good 5-drops with Sludge Belcher gone, but that gap can be filled with future releases.

 

My thought was that Azure Drake would just need to be a 4/3 to balance it out, but this seems fine too. I'm happy with change.

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».ben.    7437
On 2/16/2017 at 9:16 PM, Paraliel said:

Surprised they were so conservative with the moves.

 

I think it's a good precedent to set though.

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wonderPreaux    1408

Hi guys,

 

Around mid-April I'll be updating the strategy discussions for Year-of-the-Mammoth. I'm thinking Finja midrange/tempo might be worth drafting a discussion for, and we'll see what rotation holds for combo/highlander.

 

One thing I've been considering is shifting the discussion template a bit by taking some cues from something like Smogon's write-ups for Pokemon, that emphasis overarching movesets/builds (here, they would be classes of an archetype), a brief nod to flexes/techs built in, and then a section of deck tips in general (echoing the team-building suggestions for a Pokemon) and then checks and counters based on matchups on an archetype-wide interaction (this is possibly complex due to class permutations). Thoughts?

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Ammit    5159
On 3/13/2017 at 10:10 PM, wonderPreaux said:

Hi guys,

 

Around mid-April I'll be updating the strategy discussions for Year-of-the-Mammoth. I'm thinking Finja midrange/tempo might be worth drafting a discussion for, and we'll see what rotation holds for combo/highlander.

 

One thing I've been considering is shifting the discussion template a bit by taking some cues from something like Smogon's write-ups for Pokemon, that emphasis overarching movesets/builds (here, they would be classes of an archetype), a brief nod to flexes/techs built in, and then a section of deck tips in general (echoing the team-building suggestions for a Pokemon) and then checks and counters based on matchups on an archetype-wide interaction (this is possibly complex due to class permutations). Thoughts?

i mean pirate warrior loses nothing too but we already have a write up on that i'm pretty sure?

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».ben.    7437

Priest is getting some awesome shit. That tutor card is probably OP.

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