Our very own katsucurry reached Rank 1 Legend just two days into Season 34 and naturally we are all very excited and eager to know what his secret is so that we can just copy/paste and hope to achieve similar results. Because we all want that “gg ez game bois” deck right?
Think it’s that easy? Katsucurry dedicated more than 20 hours of gameplay and played over 150 games, averaging a win rate of 66%. And he did it with just one deck: Reno Mage. He said that the deck definitely felt like a Tier One option as long as there were no Tier One Druids.
Kastucurry says he doesn’t consider himself to be a deck builder, he usually just plays the decks that he thinks are the current best out there. If he were to make any changes to the list, it would be to add additional card draw like Novice Engineer or Acolyte of Pain. The Ice Lance has also been hit or miss for him, so it’s next up on the chopping board.
Because this is a Reno deck, there’s no perfect way to make a reliable mulligan guide as there are way too many possible permutations of starting hands.
That being said, katsucurry did provide some tips:
- Reno Jackson is always a keep except against Druid
- Kazakus is always a keep
- You want removal spells against aggressive decks
- Against control, you want draw spells, cycle/value minions, Emperor Thaurissan and Archmage Antonidas
To answer the question that’s on everyone’s minds: No, Pirate Warrior isn’t the top dog on ladder. Out of the 150+ games he played, Katsucurry mostly faced Shamans – usually Aggro Shaman variants – but there were a few Midrange Shamans here and there as well. Other reasonably represented decks were Miracle Rogue, Renolock, Reno Mage, Pirate Warrior, Dragon Warrior and Dragon Priest. Other than Dragon Warrior, the rest of the decks shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone.
Katsucurry said that the easiest deck to beat was Midrange Shaman. This version of Reno Mage also has the edge in a mirror match and against Renolock because of it’s additional reach. Rogues and Dragon Priests feel like the harder match ups for this deck.
Against aggressive decks, you basically try to survive with removal spells and get to the late game where you can resolve a threat and contest their board position.
Against control decks, you usually go for the burn plan which is really similar to how Freeze Mage wins and sometimes you can go for the value game plan. The burn plan is to crank out a bunch of Fireballs from Archmage Antonidas with the help of Emperor or double 1-cost Kazakus spells and then burn out your opponent to the ground with a little help from Pyroblast or Alexstrasza.
GAME PLAY TIPS
When playing against aggressive decks, the aim is just to survive the early game, so plan your turns in such a way that you take the least amount of damage possible. Don’t be afraid to use cards like Ice Lance just to prevent a few points of damage and keep stalling until you find Reno Jackson or stabilize the board.
Against control, your game plan should be to draw and cycle as much as possible to get to Emperor Thaurissan or Archmage Antonidas. You almost always want to wait for the Brann + Kazakus combo. However, if the situation calls for an emergency Kazakus board clear or if you feel the need to get immediate value in the form of drawing cards and/or developing a board, go for it.
The deck has a few interesting combos that are good to be aware of. Besides the Brann + Kazakus combo, there are:
- Inkmaster Solia + Pyroblast + Roaring Torch or discounted Fireball can OTK after Alexstrasza or against an active Jaraxxus
- Inkmaster Solia + 10 mana Kazakus potion on turn 7
- With 10 mana crystals, Brann + Kabal Courier can potentially find and play Kazakus in the same turn
- Brann + Kazakus for double 1-cost potions to play with Antonidas
Written by Jace
Jace is a casual Hearthstone player. Like most players, he has dreams of hitting Legend, but like most players, he’s too lazy to put in the effort. So he writes articles like this one to learn from the true masters. Check out more of his writing attempts at punslingerofthemildjest.wordpress.com.