Back on Track Mage Arena Run

Either due to bad drafts or being distracted of watching the World Series, I have had 2 straight 2-win arena runs in Hearthstone. Time to get back on track!

Draft

Courtesy of heartharena.com
Courtesy of heartharena.com
  1. Saboteur, Grim Patron, Coldlight Seer – Clear pick hear as Saboteur is the only decent card for arena.
  2. Flame Juggler, Sorcerer’s Apprentice, Spider Tank – This one can go all 3 ways. Sorcerer’s Apprentice is too early to pick due to no spells drafted. Flame Juggler got picked because of it’s active ping ability.
  3. Amani Berseker, Darkscale Healer, Blackwing Corrupter – Amani Berserker gets duckets for Mage decks, and always useful for more early game.
  4. Worgen Infiltrator, Venture Co Mercenary, Maiden of the Lake – Value-wise, this one is closer than it seems. All of these cards have their uses at times, but Worgen Infiltrator is a pesky 1-drop that is good for early game aggression. If anything, it lets me play something after Flamestrike.
  5. Darkscale Healer, Kobold Geomancer, Mirror Image – Not the best picks, Darkscale Healer has the most value.
  6. Micro Machine, Stormpike Commando, Lance Carrier – More mediocre cards here, but going with Micro Machine because it can single-handedly win games if uncontested.
  7. Blizzard, Injured Blademaster, Fencing Coach – Blizzard is a card you should never pass on, except if you get… Nevermind.
  8. Flame Lance, Shieldbearer, Refreshment Vendor – Flame Lance provides big threat removal. Sometimes it may make you think a bit about whether to use it on something that has significantly less than 8 life.
  9. Murloc Tidehunter, Stoneskin Gargoyle, Ironforge Rifleman – The mediocre minion train chugs on. Murloc Tidehunter gives me an option to bring out Turn 1 + Coin aggression.
  10. Coldarra Drake, Molten Giant, Blood Knight – I’ve never used Coldarra Drake before, and it provides my first big minion pick. Molten Giant just isn’t great in Arena, and Blood Knight is a low-risk, high-reward type.
  11. Worgen Infiltrator, Jungle Panther, Archmage – Going with another Worgen here to build up my early game. The other picks are okay, but not cards I really love.
  12. Mind Control Tech, Arcane Nullifier X-21, Gadgetzan Auctioneer – MCT punishes overcommitting to the board, but it often clogs up the hand. It is still the best value over these other picks.
  13. Sen’jin Shieldmasta, Ice Barrier, Ironbeak Owl – Slam dunk for Sen’jin here.
  14. Fallen Hero, Flamewaker, Unstable Portal – This is another pick that could really go 3 ways. Fallen Hero is the safest pick here, as it has a pretty good ability. Flamewaker is reliant on more spells in the arena deck, and Unstable Portal is true RNG.
  15. Flamestrike, Grimscale Oracle, Mechanical Yeti – I really needed a Yeti here, but you can’t skip the Flamestrike.
  16. Mana Wyrm, Dragonhawk Rider, Razorfen Hunter – Half of my deck is picked already, and I have 3 spells and 12 minions. Mana Wyrm is a premium 1-drop that can get really dangerous if I pick more spells.
  17. Fen Creeper, Mogu’shan Warden, Bloodsail Raider – Fen Creeper is the clear value pick compared to the others.
  18. Shattered Sun Cleric, Frost Elemental, Unstable Ghoul – Heartharena favored Frost Elemental, but going with the faster pick.
  19. Gnomish Inventor, Worgen Infiltrator, Mirror Image – Going against the value grain again, just becuase I have 2 Worgens already. Gnomish Inventor gives me something to do in turn 4 and a card draw, which is something I really struggle with in the Arena.
  20. Unstable Portal, Pint Sized Summoner, Target Dummy – Well I can satisfy the RNG requirement with Unstable Portal. A really dangerous card that allows me to play something big on an early turn.
  21. Flamewaker, Mana Wraith, Ancient Mage – As said before, Flamewaker is a dangerous constructed card with less effectiveness in the Arena. I have 4 spells so far. Still the best pick here.
  22. Pit Fighter, Dragonhawk Rider, Micro Machine – Pit Fighter satisfies the need for some solid mid-late game.
  23. Frostwolf Warlord, Ice Barrier, Wisp – Another good pick for my mid-late game department.
  24. Water Elemental, Captured Jormungar, Nightblade – Water Elemental is tough to pick against, but I’m not choosing against a Fireball or Flamestrike.
  25. Spectral Knight, Faerie Dragon, Argent Squire – I picked Spectral Knight, and boy I have a lot of 5-drops.
  26. Flame Lance, Frost Nova, Lord of the Arena – Getting a second big removal with Flame Lance. I will be more aggressive using it to clear threats, now that I have 2.
  27. Stormwind Champion, Dragonling Mechanic, Ice Rager – Stormwind Champ is often a hidden win-condition, or something that can help trading up.
  28. Water Elemental, Ice Lance, Dalaran Aspirant – Another Water Elemental picked to annoy weapon users. Dalaran Aspirant is not bad, given I have a few spells in this deck, but not better than Water Elemental.
  29. Lowly Squire, Stormwind Champion, Flying Machine – I went with a big anti-value pick here, just because my deck was leaning too heavy. I don’t have any early removals like Flamecannon or Frostbolt (and I have one pick left). So I figure I would have to rely on early game minions to fill that void. There is why I took Lowly Squire.
  30. Polymorph: Boar, Madder Bomber, Gnomish Experimenter – Polymorph: Boar gives me a 3rd pseudo-removal, or some extra push for lethal or to kill something.

Strategy

  • I have a deck with plenty of big removal, AOE, and spell-triggering cards.
  • The 3-4 drop game is lacking, but I have more ground on 1,2 and 5.
  • The general strategy seems to be aggressive with small minions and control big threats with my spells. I can also have control on big boards with my AOE spells and MCT.

Games

  1. Paladin – Coin – 1-0 – The Paladin simply didn’t have enough early game to establish a board. I got a Frostwolf Warlord out on Turn 5, and was in control thereafter.
  2. Paladin – First – 2-0 – My opponent was threatening with Muster for Battle, Questing Adventurer, and even Justicar Trueheart! I ended his/her progress with a Flamestrike and put out big minions like Frostwolf Warlord and a portaled Drakonid Crusher.
  3. Hunter – Coin – 2-1 – Face Hunters ruin everything. I actually had my Flamewaker fall victim to a Snipe in this game. I set up taunts, and even played Saboteur to prevent my death in my final turn. And then I get a North Sea Kraken ping to the face. Good gameplan by the Hunter.
  4. Mage – Coin – 2-2 – This game went to Turn 15, and was mostly a product of my opponent being cautious. It also shows that not having card advantage will lose games. My opponent had cards in hand the whole game, while I resorted to topdecking for a while.
  5. Druid – First – 2-3 – Another long 15 turn game, where I played a cautious opponent. I lost a Stormwind Champion to MC Tech, and things went down from there. I faced a Mech-Bear-Cat that seemed to be in the game trading my opponents till I had none.
This literally happened: "For the Alliance!" "For the Horde!" "For Nazjatar." That's why we went 2-3. We didn't have a united cause!
This literally happened:
“For the Alliance!”
“For the Horde!”
“For Nazjatar.”
That’s why we went 2-3. We didn’t have a united cause!

Upshot

  • Welp, the reclamation Arena run proved to be my third straight 2-win arena run. The slump is official.
  • My arena win average is 5.03, drifting down to my plight of 4.9’s.
  • Something is wrong right now, or I am distracted from playing my best.
  • I need a Rogue run to get me going again.
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