Disclaimer: Hello and welcome to yet another
Decks to Play. Well, after some thinking I decided to broaden my horizons regarding the “Decks to Play”, mostly because of our latest article which concerned something that wasn’t completely directed to Decks to Play, and I decided to change the overall concept of the series into something more personal. From this day onwards, we’ll be having a different type of “Decks to Play” articles, which is going to be called “Nuba’s Corner” – Here i’ll be not only posting Deck lists I think you should be playing this week, i’ll also be making different types of articles and talking about things related to Hearthstone that I find interesting and worth noticing. The competitive air of the analysis and discussions will remain the same (which is, mildly informal) and the writing will also remain the same, hope you guys enjoy 🙂
This day we’ll be taking a closer look at all the Decklists used by the Americas Spring Champion Cydonia and analyzing his card choices for every list, deeming their viability in the ladder and Open tournaments altogether.
Different from most Open tournaments, the Spring Championship happened as a 5-deck-1-ban best-of-seven tournament, but that doesn’t mean his deck choices are not viable ladder or tournament options, we’ll actually only be able to tell that after making some deep analysis on them, so let’s get started!
C’Thun Druid became the best of the Tier-2 deck options that are presented to us as tournament picks, the choice goes usually between C’Thun Druid, Miracle Rogue or Freeze Mage as to which deck to bring as 5th deck.
The reason why this gets chosen over the other options is its consistency – C’Thun Druid has a much smoother, proactive and simpler curve than the other options. Despite not having the potential to auto-win certain matchups like Freeze or Miracle, C’Thun Druid has no automatic loss either, and is a fine deck to consider whenever making your tournament choices.
Now let us take a closer look at Cydonia’s list itself: The player has chosen to bring back the pair of wild-growths, he also brought in the two raven-idols which starts to make me think he decided to go for the basic approach rather than a more bold one like AKAWonder did in the EU Spring Championship.
Judging by the way this list was made, analyzing how it has some extra late game, doesn’t run klaxxi-amber-weaver and how little early game it has when compared to AKAWonder’s list, I don’t believe this one list to be as ladder-viable as AKAWonders given how it auto-losses to Aggro, however it does seem to do a better job at fighting the main class it was meant to fight: Warrior.
The reason for me to disregard this deck is a viable ladder deck is how weaker this deck is when fighting against both Zoo and Shaman when compared to other versions of C’Thun Druid, meanwhile this deck seems to do a much better job at defeating Warriors and probably other Control decks such as Renolock and Priest, which is the reason why this could be a good bring-up in BO3 tournaments, although I don’t think it is the best option nor the best list for Opens.
Given the power of Midrange Hunter at fighting Control decks when compared to other more aggressive decks, Midrange Hunter is often a good pick for tournaments as well as Ladder. This is given due to the fact that Hunters, despite having a below-50 win rate against Aggressive decks, that win rate isn’t very far from the actual 50-50, which given the almost-guarantee win against Control decks is enough justification for the deck to be played.
Here we see a much different approach taken by Cydonia when looking at the C’Thun Druid. As the Midrange Hunter, Cydonia decided to go for the better matchups across the board rather than a specific matchup snipe deck.
Don’t take me wrong, Cydonia’s addition of freezing-trap to the deck makes it slightly better against Control and Midrange, which is something that Midrange Hunter as a whole already is, so that can be a reason why the deck was chosen to be built as this rather than let’s say Camel Hunter, which is absurdly good against Warriors but has lower matchups against the other kind of strategies it is either even or bad against.
Midrange Hunter is historically bad against decks such as Zoo, Shaman and Pirate Warrior while excelling at destroying Control decks such as Renolock, Warriors, Priests and Paladins. By playing this version you won’t be losing your odds of defeating the one decks you are bad against, but you’ll also not be having higher odds of defeating the decks you are already good against. I call this a decent ladder deck overall and a good open-tournament option too. This is definitely a deck I would bring to a Open tournament in my line, even as a 3-deck choice.
Much like the Midrange Hunter option, Cydonia didn’t go very deep in making his Shaman choice (much like everyone else in the Americas Championship) and decided to go with the standard Aggro Shaman build.
This is a build that I have already discussed multiple times in various other articles, so I don’t think we need to add much here anyway. Just remember this is the best, hands down, version of aggressive Shaman and the one you should be playing in case you want to play Shaman.
Tier-1 choice for both ladder as well as tournaments.
Zoolock is a tier-1 deck with only a few open slots for development, however these “few” open options for personal choices makes the deck a lot variant from player to play. Cydonia’s options here were, once again, directed toward fighting Warrior and Control in general.
Cydonia’s choices with his Zoolock were just a little out of the ordinary, which should be fine given his previous Deck choices. The presence of crazed-alchemist means he was expecting doomsayers and bloodhoof-brave, meanwhile the lack of sea-giant makes his snowballing against Aggro decks less consistent and his Control matchup slightly more consistent.
You might have noticed a trend lately to leave sea-giant aside from your deck when making your choices, and despite that being decent for tournament, it is optional for ladder given the number of aggro matchups you face.
Another interesting card added to this deck was argent-horserider. This card was likely added here to smooth the curve even further as a 5th Drop-3 instead of a 4th Drop-4, which should make sense if we take a closer look at the deck’s curve. The good point about adding the Horserider here is that not only you’ll be smoothing your curve and having a decent “persistent” minion, you also won’t be losing the effect that a dark-iron-dwarf (possible target that was removed to add the Horserider) would have on board.
Dragon Warrior is becoming a popular tournament pick in open tournaments. The deck’s playstyle is something in between Pirate Warrior and Tempo Warrior, without the inconsistency of Pirate Warrior but with less potential. The deck started being picked often in tournaments because it can steal games here and there because of its snowballing potential, and was Cydonia’s deck of choice. It is also important to note that Dragon Warrior has a much weaker matchup against Aggro when compared to either Tempo or Control, meaning it isn’t the best ladder option, despite how much we try looking at it.
Given that every other player in the tournament decided to pick Tempo Warrior, I believe Cydonia’s strategy here was to play something that people haven’t being training a lot against, while retaining part of Tempo Warrior’s consistency. Dragon Warrior also seems to have more proactive plays than Tempo Warrior, which is a deck made to fight off early aggressive more than anything.
Dragon Warrior is a better option to play against Control decks and Warrior (any strategy) mirrors, which is likely to be the reason why this was picked over Tempo or Control Warrior.
Analysis on the Lineup in general
Cydonia’s deck choices were made to exploit Control and Warriors in general, however there wasn’t many Control decks in the scene as we saw on China for example. However, given the raw power of the deck’s choices, his lineup was still able to compete toe-to-toe with other decks, and given how good Cydonia played, he was a deserving champion.
And this is it for the analysis of the Americas Spring Champion decklists. After taking long looks at playtesting his decks I learned a lot from them, so I hope you guys were able to extract at least part of the information I wanted to give you, because these little details does help us improve a lot in the long run.
We’ll be seeing each other again very soon in more Decks to Play coming your way, I love you guys! 😀See you around,