OTK decks have come and gone in Hearthstone and one of the most infamous decks that had the ability to burst down opponents from full health was the old Grim Patron Warrior. Warsong Commander was nerfed but the deck lived on, without the burst of course. Worgen OTK Warrior broke into the meta recently after a long time and it finds its place as a tier 2 deck. The deck is known for having some insane potential versus decks like Zoo and Aggro Shaman with plenty of AoE effects and spot removals. With One Night in Karazhan Wing 2 bringing out the fury of Arcane Giant, people immediately added the card to spell heavy decks and the giant has been showing impressive results. I tried the card out in Yogg Druid and Miracle Rogue and it did not disappoint with Yogg Druid being a sleeper choice for fitting in the card for some insane mid to lategame potential.
Recently, Reynad came up with the idea of having the core removals that OTK Worgen Warrior had but instead of choosing to include the Raging Worgen combo which requires you to either save the coin or wait for Emperor Thaurissan to make the combo cheap enough, he chose to include Arcane Giants and Blood Warriors. It allows for generating some amazing lategame threats as well as having the Charge combo with Faceless Manipulator intact for one turn kills. Now the combo by itself isn’t as explosive as Worgen but it is a lot easier to pull off. Dog and RDU tried the Patron variant and cut out the Blood Warriors from the deck and chose to add Grim Patrons instead to have an alternate win condition outside of the burst damage allowing the deck to perform a lot more consistently. Many pros have achieved high legend ranks with the deck and Dog peaked at Rank 12 Legend this season. It’s a really fun deck and I’ve been playing it a lot lately. Almost every matchup is winnable if you play it right with Control Warrior and Freeze Mage being the only 2 extremely hard matchups I can think of. All you need to do is draw out your deck and keep removing all threats in the initial turns and then you can safely drop your patrons and win the game very easily.
Understanding Your Win Condition
One of the best things about the deck is that you can be very flexible with the way you plan your games. You do not always need to OTK your opponent. Sometimes, just dropping Patrons and spawning more of them with Whirlwind effects across several turns is enough to force concedes because many classes cannot deal with them. Druid is one of the most popular classes on ladder right now and they have no means to clear a board full of patrons. You do not even need to save your Inner Rage in this matchup because having complete board control is enough. While a matchup like Priest would require you to save your combo pieces fully because they have sufficient AoE clears and you are better off saving your Inner Rage copies for the full burst combo. Decks that have no means of clearing Patrons can be approached differently and the same can be said about classes that have healing spells or minions. If you know your opponent does not run any kind of heals then you can plan out your potential burst across the turns and spend your cards accordingly. The maximum damage that you can do to your opponent is 28 with 2 Inner Rage, Arcane Giant and Faceless Manipulator. If you happen to be facing a lot of decks that see through your gameplan and try to keep themselves at 30 HP then you can consider running a Rampage for a full OTK. You can choose to let go of one copy of Commanding Shout or Shield Block and tech in a Rampage to swing at your opponent for full HP bursts.
Micro and Macro Decision Making
You need to be fully aware of what your turns down the line should be like. There are various small decisions that you need to make each turn like using a Slam on a 3 health minion but choosing to not play Blood to Ichor on it for a Ravaging Ghoul into Execute the following turn based on your opponent’s potential plays. You need to force the maximum value out of your cards but at the same time you need to manage your health pool and avoid falling back too hard. It’s not just the plays of a specific turn but also the follow ups in the subsequent turns that matter and you need plan them out. Setting up a good Battle Rage is essential because it is your most powerful draw engine. Acolyte of Pain is a card that you should try to get 2 draws out of at the very least but dropping it on curve against aggro to avoid some face damage when you do not have your Fiery War Axe or other removal to deal with the board is a correct play. These small decisions you make and the planning down the line can be very rewarding.
Inner Rage: One of the optional combo pieces that you can use for spawning an extra Grim Patron or combo it with Acolyte of Pain when you desperately need draws, use Wild Pyromancer for AoE effects and so on. I do not recommend using it for Execute but when you have no other means of damaging the target minion unless you do not have other options.
Blood to Ichor: One of the best cards to come out in Whispers of the Old Gods. It makes Execute a lot more effective that what it was in the past. It’ a perfect tool to work with Wild Pyromancer, Grim Patron, Acolyte and other key cards.
Whirlwind: This card is a simple 1 damage AoE that works perfectly with Battle Rage, Grim Patron, Wild Pyromancer and Execute. Use it whenever you need to clear lots of 1 health minions or spawn patrons.
Battle Rage: This is your most important draw engine. The best case scenario would be to use it on a board full of Grim Patrons to draw out your whole deck easily by turn 10. Try to be as greedy as possible and identify how you can make the best use of the card. However, if you happen to have a dead hand and see no means of abusing the power of the card then use it for cycling.
Commanding Shout: The card was first made popular by Neviilz in the recent past when he took his OTK Worgen Warrior to Legend #1. The card when used in conjunction with Wild Pyromancer seeks to replace Brawl by allowing you to clear out boards quite efficiently while cycling a card in the process as well. In the later stages of the game if you have dealt with all major threats that your opponent can play, feel free to use it to get to your combo pieces to close out the game.
Fiery War Axe: One of the best cards in the game in my opinion because of how efficient it is in dealing with aggro and tempo decks. You can combo Fiery War Axe with Slam, Ravaging Ghoul, Blood to Ichor to take out high health minions quite easily as well.
Slam: It’s a great removal and cycle card that you can use with a range of tools available at your disposal for clearing off minions or just cycling through your deck. Do not hesitate to play it on key targets like Flame Imp of Knife Juggler if you do not have other removals. The cycle is not as important as being able to survive until you can get your combo pieces together.
Wild Pyromancer: One of the core cards of the deck that has plenty of potential combos. With so many cheap spells and Commanding Shout combos, you can use it to clear boards, spawn Grim Patrons or even set up Battle Rage turns for multiple draws.
Acolyte of Pain: One of your cycle cards that helps you get to your removals and combo pieces faster. You should try to get 2 draws at least if possible but try not to be too greedy with it against aggressive decks if you are low on removal in hand.
Charge: This is one of the combo pieces. Play this on one of your Arcane Giants and then copy the giant with Faceless Manipulator for a 20 damage combo at the very least.
Ravaging Ghoul: It’s a great card for generating nominal board presence and clearing tokens or setting up Execute against larger minions. It can also be used to spawn Grim Patrons on board later in the game.
Shield Block: This is your only source of life gain outside of the hero power and it also works well with Wild Pyromancer for emergency clears. Shield Block cycles itself while drawing you a card and stalls out the game a bit longer for you to find the cards you need.
Faceless Manipulator: One of the essential combo pieces to get your charge combo off with Arcane Giant.
Grim Patron: This is your alternate win condition. Versus some classes you can just generate some Patrons and it is good enough to win you the game outright because not every class has efficient answers to the card. The card is also good for cloaking the fact that you are OTK warrior and they might not expect the combo at all!
Arcane Giant: Finally, coming to our most important card – Arcane Giant. It is a great minion on its own and it has found its place in several decks, especially in Druid decks. You only need one for the OTK combo but the second one is available to you just for drawing it consistently and you can freely play one copy of the card as a threat on board. With so many spells in the deck the giants almost always cost 0 by the time you draw out your combo in the lategame.
Arcane Giant OTK vs Worgen OTK
Now coming to one of the most important considerations – why should you play this deck when Worgen OTK is a thing? One of the key differences is that you do not need to hold onto the coin or need Emperor Thaurissan for pulling off the combo. You also have access to Grim Patrons as an alternate win condition. Most importantly, the giants are not situational. You can play them as threats versus decks like Aggro Shaman or Zoolock after you deal with their big threats and they will not be able to deal with the giants too easily. On the flipside, you have a lot less burst than what an OTK Worgen Warrior has but 28 damage is almost always enough if you keep your opponent’s health/armor in check.
Inclusion of Rampage
One of the reasons why you might want to include Rampage in the deck is if you are facing too many classes that have heal and can stay at 30 HP or more to avoid your OTK combo. If you happen to be facing too many control Paladins or Priests who see through your game plan then you should tech in one Rampage in place of one Commanding Shout to be able to OTK your opponent for more than 30 damage. One of the problems with this is that you need to spend 5 mana on Faceless Manipulator, 3 Mana on Charge and 2 mana on Rampage making it a 10 mana combo which means you might need to wait a little longer than usual. There are games where I have been able to pull the combo off on turn 8 and 9 and win before opponents realized what they are dealing with. If you include Rampage you also need to get the cost of the giants down to 0 to be able to use the combo with Rampage. Alternatively you can cut out 1 Pyromancer and both the Commanding Shouts to make place for Emperor Thaurissan and 2 Brawls. I do not recommend this however going by how efficient the deck already is and the lack of decks that consistently are able to stay at 30 HP. You can just preserve one of your Fiery War Axe charges to get the last bit of damage.
The OTK Combos
All of these OTK combos should ideally set you back by 8 mana because of the sheer number of spells you have to make your giants cost 0. You have 17 spells in the deck and all of them cost 3 or less so you will have no trouble playing out 12 of the spells going by how much card draw and cycle options you have.
Arcane Giant + Faceless Manipulator + Charge = 20 Damage
Arcane Giant + Faceless Manipulator + Charge + Inner Rage = 24 Damage
Arcane Giant + Faceless Manipulator + Charge + 2X Inner Rage = 28 Damage
I have been playing this deck on the EU ladder at Rank 1 at the moment. I hope to finish off the grind in a day or two and I feel it’s one of the strongest decks to be made in the recent past. It might need some fine tuning and you can consider running Blood Warriors instead of Grim Patron to use your cheap AoE effects for creating giants for cheap using Blood Warriors for copying the giants on board to add them to your hand. The original list was created by Reynad and it’s really fun to play as well as brings forth a lot of challenging turns where you have to plan your future turns and the whole game in some cases based on how you choose to approach each matchup.
I hope you have fun with the deck and if you have any queries you can comment below and I’ll answer them for you.