October 1 Rogue Arena

Coming into this draft, I had a 2 straight blase 3-3 arena runs, bringing me to exactly a 5 win average, over 154 recorded runs in Heartharena. I was looking for a spark, which usually means a good Rogue deck. I was in luck.

Draft

  1. Lil’ Exorcist (44), Argent Commander (79), Blade Flurry (63) – I like Blade Flurry but it is a better constructed card than in the arena. Argent Commander is a premium card for the first pick.
  2. Wisp (20), Antique Healbot (52), Amani Berserker (60) – Healbot is useful in constructed, but it an anti-tempo card in the arena. Take the 2 drop here.
  3. Stormpike Commando (56), Annoy-o-Tron (62), Lost Tallstrider (54) – Nothing here really inspires awe, so taking the most valuable card here. Also in time for Annoy-o-Tron vs Boom Bot!
  4. Betrayal (62), Vanish (13), Mad Scientist (26) – Unlike constructed, Betrayal is pretty good board clear in the arena. Also the other 2 picks are crap.
  5. Defias Ringleader (72), Stoneskin Gargoyle (4), Vanish (13) – I love everything about Defias Ringleader. The early jump with coin, the quotes. It probably contributed greatly to Rogue being my favorite.
  6. Nerub’ar Weblord (45), Young Dragonhawk (14), Mukla’s Champion (50) – I can afford to take the win condition ape on hippo here. I like Nerub’ar Weblord and would have taken it over a bunch of other things.
  7. Buccaneer (78), Kobold Geomancer (35), Backstab (83) – 2 very good cards here. I would take Backstab only for the ability to combo. Buccaneer takes 3 mana to set up. Buccaneer is great as well, hope to see another in this draft.
  8. Assassin’s Blade (51), Ironforge Rifleman (37), River Crocolisk (55) – The River Crocolisk is the safe pick here. Assassin’s Blade was good back in the day, but in the arena, you’re just incentivized to taking damage for 4 charges.
  9. Volcanic Drake (57), Frostwolf Grunt (35), Priestess of Elune (30) – One okay card, and two bad ones, easy pick.
  10. Twilight Drake (69), Sunwalker (87), Saboteur (71) – All solid cards, but the Sunwalker is one of the best cards in the arena. 1/3 into the draft and I have no 3 or 4 drops.
  11. Voodoo Doctor (50), Bloodfen Raptor (58), Flame Juggler (74) – Flame Juggler is a premium 2-drop to take here. Also I prefer 2/3 to 3/2 on 2-drops.
  12. Undercity Valiant (74), Razorfen Hunter (62), Refreshment Vendor (54) – Premium 2-drop over mediocre 3 and 4 drops? I don’t seem to panic over having a good curve. Maybe that’s why I’m stuck at 5 wins average.
  13. Spectral Knight (63), Sprint (62), Gang Up (-1) – I find myself topdecking a lot in the arena. For that reason alone, I am taking the Sprint, which swings a top deck match to a high probability of winning. This is a controversial pick, as Spectral Knight is a very solid card in its own right.
  14. Acolyte of Pain (60), Dalaran Mage (15), Kvaldir Raider (65) – Kvaldir is a win condition that spirals out of control. Acolyte of Pain is a considerable pick here, but I am seeming to lean towards 2-drops and big drops.
  15. Ancient Brewmaster (50), Gurubashi Berserker (43), Tinker’s Sharpsword Oil (58) – Oh boy, this is a weird deck. I need some good middle game! The oil gives me the burst needed to put up a win condition.
  16. Boulderfist Ogre (62), Buccaneer (97), War Golem (40) – I have enough big stuff at the moment, and Buccaneer is always a welcome pick.
  17. Backstab (79), Hungry Dragon (70), Booty Bay Bodyguard (36) – Oh hey, here I am skipping on another 4 for a better value card.
  18. Unstable Ghoul (43), Leper Gnome (47), Sap (76) – I don’t have an Assassinate or Sabotage yet, so Sap is my removal for now. I don’t love the card, but it is pretty good.
  19. Youthful Brewmaster (50), Sprint (17), Tournament Medic (44) – I’m taking the Tournament Medic here. Sure, it’s not a good card. But I also have 0 4-drops at this point.
  20. Angry Chicken (18), Abomination (31), Shady Dealer (82) – Shady Dealer fills the void in my middle game. I already have 1 pirate as well.
  21. Venture Co Mercentary (74), Mukla’s Champion (52), Scarlet Crusader (88) – Premium 3-drop right after I picked my first 3-drop in my deck!
  22. Coneal (22), Gilblin Stalker (78), Hungry Dragon (79) – Normally the Gllblin is a bit better than Hungry Dragon. However the lack of middle game necessitates this pick. Also the Backstabs mitigate the threat here.
  23. Burgle (52), Bloodsail Corsair (37), Coliseum Manager (67) – Going against the value pick, I’m going for Burgle. Why? Because it is hella fun and usually good.
  24. Gang Up (-5), Nightblade (30), Mechanical Yeti (89) – Pretty good 4-drop here to make the mana curve a little more normal.
  25. Backstab (75), Windfury Harpy (14), Abusive Sergeant (83) – I would’ve taken the 3rd Backstab if it weren’t for HearthArena. Oh yeah Betrayal synergy!
  26. Frigid Snobold (58), Silent Knight (100), Blackwing Corruption (62) – All okay here, but Silent Knight fills the gaping hole of middle game.
  27. Force-Tank Max (45), Nightblade (31), Eviscerate (92) – I often say that I feel naked playing Rogue and not having Eviscerate. This will “give me some clothes.”
  28. Blackwing Technician (77), Shieldbearer (43), Young Dragonhawk (25) – 2 dragons in the deck to help my 3-drop. Yeah science!
  29. Boneguard Lieutenant (80), Elven Archer (65), Tournament Medic (41) – Boneguard is one of the quiet cards that is pretty good in the arena, and nobody really talks about.
  30. Emperor Cobra (69), Cutpurse (64), Deathlord (55) – The last pick of this putrid draft is not too exciting as well. The Combra is easily the best pick here.

Gameplan

Aggro-control is my favorite type of Rogue to play in the arena. With 2 Backstabs, I have a good handle on controlling the early game board. This is a really small deck: my biggest minion is Kvaldir Raider or Volcanic Drake. I have more than enough early game, and fewer mid game options. Not having an Assassinate makes me skittish, but Sap will do.

Games

  1. Shaman – Coin – 1-0 – I played a somewhat competitive game against a newish player, based off the decisions he/she made on removals (e.g. Crackle on low health minions). Overall I never lost control of the field and won with oil.
  2. Shaman – First – 2-0 – I was able to take the board and had Kvaldir Raider and Mukla’s Champion inspiring together. My Kvaldir Raider got silenced but I still had enough for exact lethal thanks to oil. A flawless victory in Mortal Kombat Standards (30-0 health).
  3. Rogue – First – 3-0 – I am happy to see more Rogues in the arena but also not the happiest since I am not great against Rogue. This was a taunt up, face-fest, and I won another thanks to my inspiration engines. Interestingly, my opponent drafted a lot of the same cards as me and played them.
  4. Warlock – Coin – 3-1 – Took my first loss against a class I usually do well against. I can say I lost to Voidcaller bringing out a big Dread Infernal. I went face a little to pressure the Warlock but it didn’t work.
  5. Mage – First – 4-1 – This was a game of workable RNG. I Burgled a Dalaran Apsirant and had him inspiring a few times. I used a 4 damage Backstab to clear a minion. Then the opponent Spellslinger gave me a Lava Shock. This lead to a 5 damage Lava Shock to the face.
  6. Paladin – Coin – 5-1 – This was a weird game, namely because the Paladin didn’t play cards such as Shielded Minibot, Murloc Knight, Truesilver Champion, Argent Lance, Aldor Peacekeeper, Mysterious Challenger… Tinker’s Oil helped me close out the game yet again. A timely Betrayal gave a huge swing in this game.
  7. Paladin – First – 6-1 – Game ended by Turn 7. I put a lot of small stuff early and was able to put an early Volcanic Drake out to help me win this one.
  8. Shaman – Coin – 6-2 – Welp, it’s not every day you face a deck with at least 3 good legendaries (The Mistcaller, Nexus-Champion Saraad, Kel’Thuzad.
  9. Rogue – Coin – 7-2 – This game ended by Turn 6. My opponent did not play enough on the board and I was able to SMOrc my way to an easy win.
  10. Rogue – Coin – 8-2 – Case of an Aggro-Control Rogue going against one with bigger drops. I can say I got lucky with topdecks in this game, and was able to rush my way to victory, while my opponent didn’t have answers to my early game. Tournament Medic also saw his first action in the run.
  11. Rogue – Coin – 9-2 – I’m showing newcomer Rogues who’s boss and played Rogue before they did. A very competitive game that involved Kidnapping, Sapping, Freezing, etc. Sprint won me the game, as the refill proved invaluable. Tinker’s Oil for the win again.
  12. Druid – 1st – 9-3 – I faced a balanced Druid who had a lot of minion answers as opposed to spells. I surprisingly got a lot of value from the Mulch and Dark Whispers I burgled. In the end, I got in trouble due to lack of card advantage and basically fighting big minions.
Dark Whispers is supposed to five you 6 Wisps. As you can see, the one leaving at the left of the screen is not ready for action.
Dark Whispers is supposed to give you 6 Wisps. As you can see, the one leaving at the left of the screen is not ready for action.

Upshot

A solid run on all accounts. With aggro-control Rogue, and decent core Rogue cards, I expect to do above-average. I don’t think I made any surprising blunders with my gameplay. Probably just lacking the subtle nuisances that define infinite arena players from me.

  • I won more games than I can admit due to Tinker’s Sharpsword Oil.
  • I’m not sure what is the main contributing factor to more Rogues in the arena. It could be the Heartharena guys’ article on Rogue being the top class. It could be just people figuring out on their own that Rogue is great in Arena. Either way, I am happy people are discovering Rogue, but also unhappy that my exclusive club is being invaded upon.
  • I’m working on an RNG series for this blog. Its good to know a couple games in this run were determined by RNG.
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