GvG Legend Divine Wisdom Part II

Last time I showed you my Top 40 Legend deck. Today we'll break down in detail so you can pilot it to Legend too!

Introduction

Happy Holidays! I hope all of you enjoyed reading the first part of my GvG Legend Divine Wisdom guide. It discusses the card choices for the deck as a result of the increased card pool stemming from the Goblins vs. Gnomes expansion. This follow-up article is a continuation of the deck guide and will thus focus on general game-play, strategy, and match-up analysis as opposed to deck construction. Because I feel it may be tough for someone to pick up a brand new deck and immediately play it flawlessly without a strong background in deck construction, I encourage readers to glance over the first part of the guide if they haven’t already.

A Small Change

After hitting legendary, I briefly tried tweaking the deck to make it run even more smoothly. While a mech sub-theme sounded good in theory due to Mechwarper powering out your minions faster for even more efficient Divine Favor plays, it didn’t pan out as well in actual games. Not all was lost however as I found a gem in the form of Clockwork Gnome.

I really like the utility spare parts that Clockwork Gnome provided during my testing. It tended to mess with my opponent’s math and was often crucial for maintaining/establishing board control early in the game. In contrast, the additional two damage from Leper Gnome is hardly relevant. As a result, I decided to remove the two copies of Leper Gnome for two Clockwork Gnome cards. Like Loot Hoarder, you can easily “store” an extra card prior to your big Divine Favor plays. Moreover, there is no anti-synergy with Divine Favor because the spare part is often used on odd (i.e. 3, 5, 7, etc.) turns anyway with your excess mana. Note: The spare mana is a byproduct of all the 2-drops in the deck. This change, though seemingly small, culminated in me reaching Top 40 Legendary in North America.

General Strategy

Mulligans – Only keep early drops (converted mana cost of 1 or 2 mana) that are not dependent on other cards. This means Knife Juggler and Argent Protector should not be kept. Blessing of Wisdom, though a major crux of the deck, should not be kept as well. In addition, keep only the strongest 2-drop (i.e. Shielded Minibot) to improve the chances of a strong Undertaker start. Finally, mid/late game cards with converted mana cost 3 or more should obviously not be kept as well.

Against Aggro Decks – In general, the faster your opponent’s deck is (i.e. Face Hunter) the more trouble you will have. This is due to the deck needing board control to set up some of its devastating combos. Aggressive Undertaker starts on the opposing side is going to make the match-up very difficult. Fortunately, Annoy-o-Tron is a very strong card to fight back against these strategies. Assuming you can regain board control with about 12-15 points of life remaining, your chances of stabilizing are high. It is important not to be afraid to aggressively use Truesilver Champion to attack your opponent’s face to regain some lost life and to increase the pressure on your opponent. If you can force him to waste burn spells (i.e. Kill Command) on your minions, you should be able to win.

Against Mid-range/Control Decks – Because you have board control early on due to the higher number of early drop minions, you should have enough time to set up your plays several turns in advance. For example, an Undertaker on turn one should immediately draw out a removal spell or grow to a 2/3 the following turn. Similarly, a turn one Argent Squire (generally ignored) can immediately take over the game if you happen to have a Blessing of Wisdom in hand. Divine Favor will almost always draw at least four cards and will usually win you the game right on the spot. As a result, it’s best to dig to for it with your Blessing of Wisdom and Loot Hoarder. Drawing it early also allows you to be more aggressive with your board state since you can recover more quickly if you successfully bait out your opponent’s sweeper spell. Note: This deck can often survive up to 2-3 sweeper effects and is thus heavily favored against control decks.

Cards to Beware

Blood Knight – Blood Knight is probably the strongest hate card against this deck. On the bright side, this card is hardly seen. However, I thought it was worth mentioning since I lost to another Aggro Paladin deck running two Blood Knights during my ladder climb.

Dr. Boom – Dr. Boom is a new staple in many control builds as an additional sweeper effect. However, you can usually trade in a way to minimize his effect. Muster for Battle and the Reinforce hero ability really help against him.

Harrison Jones – Having your 1/3 (assuming one charge use) weapon from Muster for Battle destroyed is back-breaking. To prevent this from happening, Truesilver Champion can ironically bait out Harrison Jones in the mid/late game against decks that play the weapon destroyer. This further reiterates the fact that Muster for Battle should be considered a late-game card against control decks. Interestingly enough, Divine Favor offsets some of the card advantage resulting from Harrison Jones.

Mind Control Tech – Personally, I usually don’t play around Mind Control Tech since it is not really that popular. However, it is pretty strong against this deck since most of the minions in the deck are valuable.

Wild Pyromancer – Whirlwind effects are very effective against this deck because they crack all of our divine shields. Moreover, Wild Pyromancer efficiently deals with our Muster for Battle plays.

Match-Up Analysis

Druid:

Mech – The only way you can lose this match is if they have an explosive start with Innervate and Mechwarper. This gets especially bad if you draw Divine Favor at an inopportune time. However, if your opponent does not have the Innervate hand, the match-up is pretty favorable as you can easily play around Swipe.

Overall Odds: Slightly Favorable

Ramp – Against Ramp Druid, you should be able to develop your board uninhibited in the early parts of the game barring an early Innervate. Blessing of Wisdom on a divine shield minion will probably force your opponent to respond. Baiting out a sub-optimal Swipe early will allow you to aggressively play Muster for Battle. Once this happens, Quartermaster should be able to win the game for you. It is important to save an Equality to deal with a possible Ancient of War.

Overall Odds: Favorable

Token – Try to keep their Violet Teacher off the board as the deck is very reliant on the card. Knife Juggler is amazing in this match-up so you’ll definitely want to save it to combo with Haunted Creeper and Muster for Battle. As usual, make sure to keep above 14 life to play around their Force of Nature / Savage Roar combo.

Overall Odds: Favorable

Hunter:

Deathrattle – Generally speaking, Hunter is the only class you don’t want to play against. Having an explosive Undertaker start is probably your best chance at winning the game as they tend to rack up tons of early damage. It is important to play around Explosive Trap, Snake Trap, and Unleash the Hounds whenever possible. With that said, you have to keep in mind what gives you the best chance of winning (your life total being the primary factor). This means sometimes playing straight into those cards and hoping for the best.

Overall Odds: Unfavorable

Face – Face Hunter is by far the worst match-up I have encountered on my ladder climb. Unless they open with an abysmal hand, they can often bring your life total below 10 in only a few turns. By this time, you have to hope to draw into multiple Annoy-o-Tron and Truesilver Champion. The Muster for Battle / Quartermaster combo can be good to give you much needed burst as well.

Overall Odds: Very Unfavorable

Mage:

Freeze – I haven’t seen too many Freeze Mage decks around lately. However, the few games I have played against the deck have all been very close. Try to prioritize playing your 2-attack minions without 1 health as this should help accelerate your clock. It is crucial to bring your opponent down as low as possible in the early/mid game. Finally, always keep above 10 life since they will frequently have access to Pyroblast as a finisher.

Overall Odds: Slightly Unfavorable

Mech – Similar to the other mech decks listed in this section, battling for board control is vital to winning the game. This is even more relevant against Mech Mage decks due to Snowchugger and Goblin Blastmage. Snowchugger is able to cut you off of your weapons while Goblin Blastmage is devastating against many of your minions. As a result, it is crucial to keep their board empty as soon as possible. Lastly, try not to fall below 10 life since they have access to Frostbolt and Fireball.

Overall Odds: Favorable

Paladin:

Control Paladin – Prior to the release of Goblins vs. Gnomes, many Paladin players would include Wild Pyromancer to combo with Equality. However, this is no longer accurate as Wild Pyromancer has anti-synergy with new all-star Muster for Battle. As a result, the only sweeper card to worry about is Consecration, which is fairly easy to play around. Once again, baiting out their Consecration should allow your own Muster for Battle to take over the game. Keep in mind that some Control Paladin lists are running Knife Juggler like us to combo with Muster for Battle.

Overall Odds: Favorable

Priest:

Control – Wild Pyromancer is definitely a good card against us. It is generally important to play around it if possible. Equality is instrumental in countering their Injured Blademaster / Circle of Healing combo. It is important to keep track of how many Circle of Healings they have left. If you can survive an early Injured Blademaster, the odds of winning are probably in your favor as they most likely won’t be able to combo Circle of Healing with Auchenai Soulpriest.

Overall Odds: Slightly Favorable

Tempo – Tempo Priest decks generally have 3 available 1-drops to them just like us. Whoever has a strong Undertaker start generally has an advantage. Equality is very good in this match-up to cancel out their health buffs from Dark Cultist, Power Word: Shield, and perhaps Velen’s Chosen. Finally, their Northshire Cleric card advantage engine is not too scary if you have Divine Favor.

Overall Odds: Even

Rogue:

Mech – When unable to protect Iron Sensei, the mech-themed Rogue decks tend to crumble. Fortunately, we can usually establish board control early due to our 1-drops. This therefore allows us to dictate trades and makes it very difficult for them to thus protect their valuable minions such as Iron Sensei and Mechwarper.

Overall Odds: Favorable

Shaman:

Mech – Both Shaman variants listed have major problems dealing with this deck. I feel the match-up is almost un-winnable for them as long as you play well. Because we have more 1 and 2 mana minions, we can wrestle board control away from them very early in the game. This cuts them off of Totemic Call and should usually bait Lightning Storm out early. After seeing that, you can freely play Muster for Battle and take over the game with your Knife Juggler combos. Hex and even Fire Elemental are not very good against this deck.

Overall Odds: Very Favorable

Mid-range – Mid-range Shaman generally keeps the game closer due to Zombie Chow starts but ultimately lose to our sheer card advantage engine as well. Their best chance is probably to mulligan aggressively and hope we have a very slow hand.

Overall Odds: Very Favorable

Warlock:

Hand-Lock – Along with Shaman variants, this is probably one of the easiest match-ups you will play against. Their hero ability, Life Tap, plays right into Divine Favor! Moreover, they are damaging themselves early, which reduces the overall damage output your minions need to provide. It is important to save Equality to get past their taunted Molten Giant later in the game. As usual, try to keep them above 15 life to prevent them from playing a cheap Molten Giant.

Overall Odds: Very Favorable

Zoo – Because they have more 1-drops than this deck, Zoo-lock can usually establish board control early in the game. With that said, Shielded Minibot and Annoy-o-Tron are very difficult for them to remove cleanly. This allows you to slowly wrestle away board control from them in the mid-game. As usual, the odds of winning the game dramatically improves with a strong Undertaker start.

Overall Odds: Slightly Unfavorable

Warrior:

Control – Of all the mid-range and control decks in the current meta-game, Warrior has the best chance at beating us due to the plethora of Whirlwind effects they run. However, even assuming they have access to two Whirlwind, two Death’s Bite, one Brawl, and either Baron Geddon or Dr. Boom, the match-up is still very winnable. Some important things to keep in mind include playing around Harrison Jones and their respective sweepers while setting up your Blessing of Wisdom plays to bait out their sweepers pre-maturely.

Overall Odds: Even

Conclusion

I hope all of you have had enjoyed reading this two-part series. If you have picked up the deck after the first part of my article, I look forward to hearing any possible feedback and comments you may have. This second portion of the article should answer most of the relevant questions you may have regarding the deck but feel free to shoot me a message if there are any questions you may have. Well met!