This is the matchup analysis of Fatigue Warrior versus Shaman.
We’re using this decklist as a basis. Keep in mind there are decklists with slight variations, each one tweaked to the player’s own taste and the meta they’re facing.
Cards To Keep
Shield Slam, Fiery War Axe, Slam, Bash, Bouncing Blade, Death’s Bite
Shield Block with Shield Slam. Justicar Trueheart if you know that you face a slower Shaman build – some sort of Control/Dragon/Malygos stuff.
Shaman Meta Decks
Shaman is the second class I’ve faced least – only 3 games against Shaman. So it’s pretty much the same idea as for the Rogue. But in Rogue section I could write more about theory because I’ve been playing Rogue a lot and I’ve played the very similar deck (Control Warrior) against Rogue a lot before TGT, but Shaman is different. I don’t have enough Shaman experience or experience against Shaman to go very in-depth here. But I’ll also try to cover those matchups from theory.
The first one is Mech Shaman. It’s the very aggressive deck that relies heavily on getting the early board tempo. Which is bad for you, because you can’t stand decks like that.
The matchup is slightly in favor of the Shaman, but it really depends on their early draws and your early draws. The matchup is similar to the Mech Mage, because the basics of the decks are the same. Snowball the early board and finish enemy with burn.
When it comes to the early threats, there are two in particular you REALLY need to kill. First one is Mechwarper. It allows Shaman to get even bigger tempo, if he sticks to the board for couple of turns, you lose the game 9/10 times. Even though 2/3 stats aren’t threatening, if enemy can follow it with let’s say Piloted Shredder on turn 3 and and Fel Reaver on turn 4, you’re going to be overwhelmed very quickly. Two Mechwarpers is a nightmare. Enemy dumps his whole hand by turn 3-4 and ONLY the last second Brawl or 3 damage Revenge might save you then. But it’s much easier if you can actually kill the Mechwarper. Fiery War Axe is the most obvious way and probably the best card in this matchup to have on turn 2. You can also Bash it or Slam + Execute it.
The second biggest early game threat is the Whirling Zap-o-Matic. You can’t leave it unchecked. Not only it deals 6 damage per turn, which is A LOT for a 2-drop, but he can get buffed to deal even more. With the proper hand, enemy might capitalize on Zap-o-Matic to kill you by turn 4-5. Something as simple as Flametongue Totem + Rockbiter Weapon deals 16 damage. This one is a little easier to take down, because 2 health lines perfectly with your Slam. Even though both of those are very scary cards, there is one more I need to mention – Annoy-o-Tron. It’s probably the card that is going to win enemy more games than you’d expect. As Warrior, there is no clear way to go through it. Taunt + Divine Shield is too much. And when a lot of your early game removal depends on your weapon hits, having to waste two of them on the 2-drop is very, very bad.
The general game plan against Mech Shaman is to survive. The deck rarely has any source of card draw, meaning you’re going to win once they run out of steam. Mech Shaman is a little inconsistent – the deck runs a lot of burn spells, and drawing all of them early might screw the Shaman. Fel Reaver is a card you need to have in your mind. It rarely makes a very big impact in this matchup – if you have the Execute or Bouncing Blade in your hand you can easily deal with it and if you have a Big Game Hunter you actually want enemy to drop it. Remember that even though Mech Shaman is an Aggro deck, it runs quite a lot of the bigger cards. Stuff like Fire Elemental, Loatheb or Dr. Boom can be often seen in the Shaman decks. So play your removals carefully and try to keep the bigger ones to deal with their big bombs.
Mid and Late Game
Once Mech Shaman runs out of cards, you should win the game easily. Their Hero Power doesn’t do anything, you can just leave the totems up, the 1/1 can hit you, but that’s it. You gain 2 Armor per turn, possibly even more with Justicar, and enemy won’t likely draw enough burn to kill you from 15+ health from his hand.
The only scary way they can kill you from their hand is the Doomhammer. The weapon deals 16 damage over 4 turns, even more if enemy has Rockbiter Weapon in his hand. That’s the only way you can lose this matchup once you stabilize on the board. Harrison Jones can completely shut it, though, and draw you a lot of cards too. If you Harrison their Doomhammer that’s a definite end of the game. Harrison Jones is actually quite decent, because Shaman also runs the Powermace. The problem with destroying it is that enemy will RARELY be at 2 charges, meaning you only get rid of the 3/1 weapon, and the Deathrattle still procs if enemy has the Mech on the board. It’s good to get rid of it in case enemy has no Mechs on the board, this way you deny the +2/+2 buff which is very strong.
Brawl is a strong card in this matchup. You still should try to remove everything they play until turn 5, because you can’t afford to take too much damage, but it can save you if enemy tries to make the last stand and dumps his whole hand into the board. Then you can get rid of it relatively easily thanks to the Brawl.
Another Shaman matchup is the Midrange/Totem Shaman. And I also think this one can go either way, but like I’ve said, it’s mostly the theory.
You have enough answers for every of their threats. The problem in this matchup is that Shaman can snowball the board in the early game. Totem Golem is really bad for you – you can’t easily deal with 3/4 minion on turn 2. Something like 2x Totem Golem start might actually set you so behind that you won’t come back into the game.
Another thing is the Tuskarr Totemic RNG on turn 3. If he gets some Hero Power totem, it’s completely fine. But him getting a 1/8 roll on Totem Golem often means that’s the game for him.
Fireguard Destroyer is a great turn 4 play. Similar to the Water Elemental from Mage, the 6 health on the 4-drop is also hard to deal with. This however can’t be ignored most of the time. It gets 5 or 6 attack on average, which is a lot on that turn. There are some niche situations where you actually WANT it to get 7 attack. If it gets 7 attack (1/4) and you’re holding a Big Game Hunter, that’s great for you.
Mid game is going to be the biggest struggle against those builds. They have quite powerful mid game drops and it might be very hard to deal with those. The good thing is that they might have a lot of dead cards. Lightning Storm is useless in this matchup, Hex might be also pretty much dead for the most part of the game, early removals like Rockbiter Weapon or Lightning Bolt / Crackle also sit dead in his hand unless they are going to be used as a burn.
Enemy Totems are in a pretty weird spot here. On the one hand you want to remove them if you can, because Shaman might get the Thunder Bluff Valiant value and they make your Bouncing Blade very weak. On the other hand, Totems make your Brawl insanely good in this matchup. If enemy develops 2 or 3 minions and has a couple of totems on the board, Brawl has a big chance for phenomenal outcome. If the Totem survives, you got a lot of value.
Brawl is generally great card in this matchup, as the Shaman is very board-centric deck. You take the board from them and not let them develop a lot of stuff – you win the game. Baron Geddon is good in this matchup too – it’s a way to get rid of the Totems after enemy has buffed them with Thunder Bluff Valiant. The game is likely to go into the fatigue, but you might draw some cards. In this matchup staying even with the enemy or being 1-2 cards deeper into the deck is fine. Your Armor gain is going to outmatch the couple of draws into fatigue and Grommash Hellscream, if not used earlier, is going to serve as a nice finisher. But you won’t likely be deeper into your deck since most of Midrange Shaman builds runs some sort of card draw.