We have a new meta! First, Sathrovarr found it’s way into Malygos Druid and Holy Wrath Paladin, but something else had an even greater impact. Highlander Hunter rose noticeably in popularity (probably because of VKLiooon’s victory at Blizzcon?). As a result, Control lineups were less effective, and Aggro Warrior replace Combo Priest in a lot of the tempo lineups.
The following data is from Hearthstone Masters Qualifiers Arlington #76-90.
Data summary from Off Curve:
Click on the players names to find out their lists and copy deck codes from Yaytears. The ones that are in bold are Qualifier winners who have provided comments about their strategy. Scroll down past the tier list to read them.
Tempo Rogue, Token Shaman, Control Warrior (NaySyl / Dcon)
Highlander Hunter, Tempo Rogue, Quest Shaman (zoska107 / ularpetarung)
Highlander Hunter, Tempo Rogue, Token Shaman (Rezdan)
Combo Priest, Tempo Rogue, Quest Shaman (Tara)
Malygos Druid, Highlander Hunter, Highlander Paladin (iBeennn)
Pretty Good Lineups:
Resurrect Priest, Token Shaman, Control Warrior (Juggernaught / Matroid)
Resurrect Priest, Quest Shaman, Highlander Warrior (Cydonia)
Tempo Rogue, Quest Shaman, Control Warrior (tidsskrift / NanoNasone)
Resurrect Priest, N’zoth Rogue, Control Warrior (Azur)
Quest Druid, Holy Wrath Paladin, Quest Shaman (SaucisseSwan)
Quest Druid, Tempo Rogue, Token Shaman (myr)
Quest Druid, Quest Shaman, Control Warrior (Jaina / Jimmare / Daydreamin)
Highlander Mage, Quest Shaman, Control Warrior (현명한현민이)
Quest Druid, Holy Wrath Paladin, Resurrect Priest (Level9001 / Zeh)
Malygos Druid, Highlander Hunter, Quest Shaman (Dethelor)
Highlander Hunter, Quest Shaman, Control Warrior (토다 / Jasiek862)
Resurrect Priest, Control Shaman, Control Warrior (Chalk / Vol)
Highlander Hunter, Combo Priest, Token Shaman (TheTeacher)
Tempo Rogue, Token Shaman, Highlander Warrior (lulnenko)
Quest Druid, Resurrect Priest, Control Warrior (Miracle7 / J4kubb)
Tempo Rogue, Quest Shaman, Aggro Warrior (TIZS)
Holy Wrath Paladin, Quest Shaman, Control Warrior (woziny)
Highlander Hunter, Combo Priest, Quest Shaman (DrBoom)
Murloc Paladin, Tempo Rogue, Quest Shaman (Robert228)
Tempo Rogue, Quest Shaman, Highlander Warrior (Yocto94)
Cyclone Mage, Combo Priest, Quest Shaman (Jester)
Quest Druid, Token Shaman, Highlander Warrior (ParadoX)
Holy Wrath Paladin, Quest Shaman, Highlander Warrior (Lethal)
Highlander Mage, Holy Wrath Paladin, Tempo Rogue (shameless)
Highlander Hunter, Resurrect Priest, Quest Shaman (Jordan)
Highlander Hunter, Token Shaman, Mecha’Thun Warrior (WaningMoon)
Highlander Paladin, Resurrect Priest, Quest Shaman (Rjú)
Malygos Druid, Resurrect Priest, Control Warrior (Mikka)
Comments from the winners:
There are a few reasons I chose to stick with this lineup. First of all I believe these 3 are between the very strongest decks of the current meta, and it’s very good to have 3 pretty strong all-around decks in conquest. I am a fast/tempo deck enthousiast as well, so the choice was obvious for me. In some earlier open cups I tested some decks like Aggro Warrior but they felt weak and inconsistent overall, without very good possible matchups. Another reason is that some people will maybe try to target Priest or Evolve Shaman, but due to their very high power level, that feels close to impossible. All my series could be played with very good chances to win.tholwmenos
My main ban with my decks is Evolve Shaman. Given a mirror which is likely to be banned and 2 unfavourables, it feels natural to ban the deck. I think the only deck that is higher priority ban is Control Warrior. Sometimes, you have to think what your opponent is going to ban and change your ban accordingly.
Main target is Quest Shaman since Combo Priest and Rogue both have very good matchups vs that deck. I don’t think there is something else that is being hard targeted with this lineup, maybe some uncommon lineups with highlander decks. It is more important to have 3 very strong decks in the format, since having to go 9-0 makes it unlikely that you find what you specifically target every round. Playing strong decks and piloting them well feels like the best strategy.
Shaman: a must-bring. Either Quest or Evolve, Shaman’s powerlevel right now is absurd, with the evolve combo being quite unbalanced so it’s a crazy strategy to not bring any of those decks.
Most decks will either ban or lose to Shaman. I prefer Evolve, because it has better matchups versus Druid/Priest/Rogue, some of the decks that are very common in lineups. Aside Control Warrior which is a very bad matchup, I don’t think there is a good enough control strategy to counter Shaman, with decks like Control Priest or Mage losing quite easily. Pretty standard list, Storms not that needed since you ban the mirror, Haunted Visions can find some tools that are good in specific situations and helps cycle the deck with Spirit of the Frog by picking cheap spells.
Priest: Another very strong all around deck, with some draws like Amet or Cleric combinations that can win single-handedly. Very good vs. some common decks of the field like Quest Druid and Quest Shaman. Not good enough vs. Rogue, some queue order or draw highroll needed vs Rogue Lineups. Decks like Highlander Hunter or Face Warrior which are supposed to beat Priest are fake news, and you can easily beat them. Another pretty standard list, 2x Silence feels correct for mirror and Control Matchups with many taunts, Van Cleefs etc. Some people cut Acolyte for 2x Silence, I think having maximum draw is important, so I cut 1x Beaming Sidekick which feels like the worst card in the deck.
Rogue: Rogue can win with many ways. Swashburglar helped a lot in terms of getting class cards for cheap cost, enabling some great tempo with Underbelly Fence and Vendetta. Edwin Van Cleef is one of the most broken cards in Hearthstone even today and can win by himself. Chef Nomi is just correct because combined with Myra’s, it enables another win condition and can win some otherwise unwinnable games. While it feels like Rogue doesnt fit very well aside 2 decks that are strong vs. Druid (Rogue not that great in the matchup), there are a lot of opportunities to beat Druid with correct, greedy mulligans and of course, luck. I prefer to play Rogue which is strong in most matchups, compared to a weaker deck that is better vs. Druid on paper but weaker overall in the field.
Conclusion is to play good decks, play well and wait for the highroll. Good matchups and draw RNG is always needed since going 9-0 in a bo3 tournament will never be just a matter of skill alone. The grind of open cups requires patience and can be very annoying some times, try to give your best in every attempt and the win becomes more likely to come. It was also my 4th Top8 so it was really likely that I would be rewarded sooner or later.
The strategy with these decks is to setup 2 turn lethal and not die on the backswing, especially Aggro Warrior I think has a massive skill gap, I roped most turns counting damage 3-4 turns ahead and if trading changes the clock and if I trade what’s the odds of drawing more damage. I haven’t included Bloodlust in my Aggro Shaman deck as it’s a burst variant which I favour, still can snowball board with Hare, Mogus and Soul but instead it gives another game plan of killing them from hand with Doom Hammer, Rockbiters, Burst and even Electra. Gives an alternative gameplan which is more consistent I believe against decks such as Druid, Rogue and any tempo matchup where you can lose board in a swing. I have 1 Shark in my Rogue which looks odd but it’s there because I couldn’t find a 30th card and out of every card it had the ability to just carry otherwise unwinnable games, debateable to put 2 in or 0 as with Myra’s it can be clunky, but you don’t always draw Myra’s and this gives you an alternative refill and massive tempo turn or a 20/20 Edwin vs Druid which can just win a game by itself. I can ban Control Warrior, Resurrect Priest, Highlander Hunter and then Aggro Shaman, Control Warrior farms my lineup so if someone is running that it’s an insta ban, Resurrect Priest has favourable matchups against the lineup but not as drastic as Control Warrior, Highlander Hunter has the ability to snowball, develop and clears with zeph and offers a versatile approach and tempo swings that none of my decks can deal with. If my opponent isn’t running any of those decks I just ban Shaman because it can just auto-win if it has coin vs my lineup.kirm
This lineup is pretty similar to the almost default Token Shaman + Vendetta Rogue + Combo Priest. However, instead of Priest, which feels like the worst deck of these three and has a handful of not-so-good matchups across the board, I opted to pick Aggro Warrior over it (credits to Psychodel for the list as well as the Rogue one and to FudoV for the initial idea). This decision also makes Combo Priest the main target of your lineup. Warrior still felt subpar comparing to Shaman (obviously) and Rogue, but managed to go 8-4. Facing control lineup, which you are hoping to dodge, you want to ban Warrior. Against Shaman/Rogue/Priest you can of course ban Shaman, but there is a solid point in banning Rogue as it lines up well against all of your decks. Versus lineups containing Druid it’s your primary ban almost in all cases. There are not many card choices to talk about, except maybe Myra’s Unstable Element over Toggwaggle and Haunting Visions inclusion in Shaman. The former one is dictated a bit by lack of control lineups on NA comparing to EU as many people do not have all the cards needed to build one; it also unlocks the possibility to play Eviscerates over Evil Cable Rats/Novice Engineers, adding up to deck’s burst potential. As for the latter, it’s essentially a 0- or 1-mana card, which provides a lot of flexibility, which is never a bad thing.doge34
The lineup was a Target Combo Priest lineup.rezdan
3 decks with 60% winrate vs Combo Priest.
I banned Control Warriors, Resurrect Priests, and Evolve Shamans.
Other than that, would like to thank my practice partners: Nexok40, DouAhou, and Joth703.
I wanted to target the popular line-up that consisted of Token Shaman, Tempo Rogue and Aggro Warrior. My ban priorities were OTK decks > Token/Quest Shaman. Control Warrior seemed to be its biggest threat and I expected it to be banned most of the time so I decided to include Rez Priest in my line-up as I felt that it was favourable against the rest of the other archetypes after I ban Shaman. N’Zoth Rogue was the final addition to my line-up as I was comfortable with the archetype. I chose a tempo-orientated package to help out with most of the early game against aggro/tempo decks. Shoutout to those who helped me practice over at Hearthstone VN!azur
I built my lineup to target Shaman and aggro lineups. You should ban Druid, not the Hakkar decks. Also, Sathrovarr is a good choice for Paladin, but it was hard to play against VanCleef and Combo Priest without Subdue.woziny
I decided to play 3 midrange decks to hardcounter control lineups and soft target the others combo/midrange lineups. As we can see there is no hard smorc/aggro lineups so this strategy has everything to go well. Worst deck against this lineup is Token Evolve Shaman so I always ban that. Another bad matchup is N’zoth Priest but I was not affraid of it because it’s not as common as Combo Priest. So the lineup is 2/3 favored against Combo Priest (1 50/50 mirror, that’s why 2 silence) it is fine against any Rogue and any Warrior or non Token/Evolve Shaman archtype. So i thought that if the field is Priest/Shaman/Rogue I will be okay and other lineups that don’t play Rogue I’ll be completlty favored.drboom
Hunter: Wild Bloodstinger too destroy combo or midrange decks and even against (non Token) Shaman.
Shaman: Plague of Murlocs because it’s too good against Priest, Rogue and even in Quest mirror it’s good.
Priest : 2x silence because of the same reason of the lineup, good against Priest and Rogue.