Mastering the Midrange Paladin: Advanced Guide

This is Part 2 of the Mastering the Midrange Paladin extensive deck guide series. It is split into 3 main guides: Part 1: Beginner Guide Part 2: Advanced Strategies, Alternate Cards and Tech Choices Part 3: Matchups and Mulligans – It is important for all decks to have some form of silence at this meta. There are many minions […]

This is Part 2 of the Mastering the Midrange Paladin extensive deck guide series. It is split into 3 main guides:

Tech Choices

ironbeak-owl– It is important for all decks to have some form of silence at this meta. There are many minions with game breaking deathrattles and in order to nullify these threats, a silence should always be run. The cheapest form of silence comes in the form of Ironbeak Owl which is the sole reason to why this card is being played in the deck right now.

big-game-hunter– Similar to Ironbeak Owl, the meta really needs some form of late threat removal. Sure there is Aldor Peacekeeper to reduce the threat’s attack to 1. However, the easier way to deal with a 7+ attack threat is to simply take it out once it comes onto the playing field. The most efficient card to do this is Big Game Hunter.

blessing-of-kings– The 4/4 stats that are instantly added provide a mechanic that are similar to charge. For 4 mana, the added statistics are actually decent. This is basically the same as power-overwhelming but instead the minion does not die. I really like this card in the meta right now as it can really provide a strong turn 4 play as long as you have a minion already on the field.

antique-healbot– This is about necessary at this moment and for the Midrange Paladin deck in general. The extra heal provides enough to stabilize against decks such as Face Hunter. The extra 3/3 body also does well to contest the board for its mana cost. The card is just too good to leave out but only one copy of it should be played at the moment because it fills a unique niche.

harrison-jones– A special tech card for the metagame right now. Harrison Jones will provide +1 with the card draw while also taking out the opposing players weapon. It stops the Patron Warrior deck which is widely considered to be the best deck in the game right now.

sylvanas-windrunner– This card likely will lead the opposing player to trade his whole board in or to make unfavorable plays just because of the threat to lose one minion to the other side. I have had many games where I just dropped Sylvanas and watched the opponent make misplays because of the deathrattle effect which has yet to be even activated.

dr-boom– Of course we have come to Dr. Balanced. This card is indeed the most broken card in the game right now as it provides so much utility for its mana cost. The body even without the bombs will oftentimes come in quite huge as of turn 7. Unless the opponent has a Big Game Hunter, Dr. Boom will wreak havoc if he stays on the board.

Alternatives

  • When there is a meta filled with Aggro decks, I would recommend keeping the current deck list.
  • Drop Harrison Jones if the Grim Patron meta ever does die out.
  • If this deck or the Hunter class sees a rise in play, possibly tech Kezan-Mystic.
  • In a meta with more control oriented decks, think about adding Ragnaros-the-Firelord and taking out a Zombie Chow.

The deck is rather expensive to craft as there are two legendaries. Dr. Boom is integral and quite necessary in most decks so you should already have it. However, the other cards are mostly specific to the Midrange Paladin deck.

I would not recommend playing this deck if you do not have tirion-fordring. The card helps so much with the control matchups and serves as a huge taunt against aggressive decks later in the game.

Strategy Against Deck Types

Aggressive Decks

Against aggressive decks, the Midrange Paladin really does shine. There is a substantial amount of early game drops that are good at punishing aggressive decks. The best examples of cards like these are Zombie Chow and Shielded Minibot. Against something like Face Hunter or Aggressive Paladin, an early sticky drop used to counteract their early plays can totally swing the game in the Midrange Paladin’s favor. If you somehow do end up missing some of your anti-aggro cards, there is still Consecration to clear up the board.

It is simply quite difficult to lose to aggressive decks as Midrange Paladin. There are so many different types of methods that can be used to starve off the early aggression of the opponent.  I am actually a huge aggressive deck player myself and there is nothing more frustrating than facing up against a Midrange Paladin. From turn 1, it just seems like they have every possible answer for the plays that I intend to make.

Midrange Decks

The midrange matchup is less overwhelming for the other class than all the other aggressive matchups. The early drops that the Midrange Paladin has are all now used for aggressive purposes rather in an attempt to stabilize the board. This is a vast change in the way that the deck is played. The Midrange Paladin is usually the more aggressive midrange deck because of their vast tools early.

The great advantage that the Midrange Paladin has in these types of matchups is that they curve out extremely well relative to most other midrange decks. From even turn 1, the Paladin will always have something to do. In comparison to Midrange Druid and Midrange Priest, this is a huge tempo advantage. The Midrange Paladin will never ever have to really sit on their cards. However, this also presents a significant problem of running out of cards. The Paladin player has very few ways to draw more cards and since they are playing from their hand a substantial amount from the early turns; they will run out of cards eventually. The point in this matchup is to create enough of an advantage to end the game early enough before this problem is encountered.

Control Decks

The control matchup is simply the most difficult out of the three types of decks for the Paladin. The Midrange Paladin occupies the same niche in this matchup that it does versus the midgame deck. However, the problem of running out of cards is much more serious. The Midrange Paladin will likely run out of threats by the late game. This is when the control player will start to be dropping bombs.

The additions of Big Game Hunter and Aldor Peacekeeper do serve as roadblocks which can clear some of the early bombs. However, against a deck like Control Warrior where its bomb after bomb, the removal that the Paladin player has may start to dwindle over time There is no real way to avoid this problem. The Midrange Paladin deck is specifically tech’ed to beat aggressive decks, so there is of course slight struggle against more late game oriented decks. The play around this is the Equality+Consecration problem which can essentially deal with the most menacing of boards. This one combo will prevent the opposing player from ever wanting to over-extend too hard or else risk losing their whole board for almost nothing in return.

Combos

There are a few combinations of cards that the paladin can utilize in order to gain tempo advantage over the opposing player. Every class has a few combos which are specifically unique to the playstyle that they have. For the Paladin, their combos often involve measures which can completely tip the board control in their favor without them having to sacrifice many resources. Here I will detail some of these combos, and when to properly enlist them in order to maximize your chances to winning with the deck.

Equality + Consecration

This is by far the bread and butter of the Paladin class. Regardless of what specific archetype of the class that you might be playing, this combo will more likely than not full clear the opposing player’s board. The best/worst part of this two card combination is that the agency completely lies to the Paladin player. There is almost no counterplay to this board wipe besides to simply not play that many minions. However, unlike Brawl from the Warrior class, there is no chance at all that any of your existing minion will survive. The only potential saving grace is that this combination also puts the Paladin player with many low health minions.

The best time to play this combination is when the opponent has clearly extended and exhausted most of their resources. After this, they should have minimal resources left, and this is the time when the Paladin player can completely capitalize. Another situation to use these cards is in the case when you are clearly in trouble. The opponent may still have resources, but this is your most valuable clear. Timing is the key to using this combination. Depending on the number of Equalities that a player decides to run in their deck amounts to how many times to which they can completely clear the board.

Knife Juggler + Muster for Battle

Unlike the previous combination, the sensitivity with timing does not quite exist with these cards. At any given moment in the game when you have above 5 mana, this combination can be played. When this hits the board, there is a minimum of at least 4 immediate damage. Three of which comes from the Knife Juggler procs, and one from the Light’s Justice weapon which will grant immediate damage.

This combination can oftentimes swing matchups against aggressive decks because it both establishes the Paladin’s board while also doing immediate damage. Sometimes, the best sequencing is to play Knife Juggler on turn 2 and then follow it up with a turn 3 Muster for Battle. Usually, this play is used in an aggressive manner. There are very few circumstances where this early play will do much later in the game. The earlier that the player can get off this damage, the more valuable it is in the grand scheme of things.

Muster for Battle + Quartermaster

This is another combination which involves Muster for Battle. I think you all can get a feeling that this card may just be a little nuts. The key to this combo is essentially to play them on the same turn. If the player were to wait a turn in order to play the Quartermaster, then this gives the opponent the opportunity to set up some sort of board clear and that would end up in a huge missed chance for the Paladin player to snowball the game.

It is QUITE difficult to deal with a 3/3 3/3 3/3 and 2/5 appearing on the board in one turn. Most players have clears that can do about 2 damage. However, at any health above that, they will often have trouble. Therefore the 3/3s are the perfect level for stats in order to avoid board clears but to still threaten the board of the opposing player.

Shielded Minibot + Coin + Blessing of Kings

Coin is not necessarily required but going from a turn 2 Shielded Minibot into a 6/6 with divine shield is certainly something that few players can expect. This essentially offers potential for a huge trade, without damaging your Shielded Minibot at all. This combination can effectively be done with any minion, but the extra assistance from the divine shield mechanic is what really makes it special.

The 6/6 body that is left essentially can trade with another big minion. Big Game Hunter which only works on 7 attack minions cannot touch the 6/6. In fact, the opposing player will most likely be forced to waste a silence on the 6/6. Since it is such a large threat, it should not be allowed to stay on the board at that state. This opens up for the Paladin player to play threats such as Tirion and Piloted Shredder and not have to necessarily worry about silence which is the only thing that really threatens those minions.

More

Be sure to check out the other 2 sections of the Midrange Paladin guide:

Co-authored by Anthony – June 21st.