5 likes = Mulligan guide 10 likes = Replacement options 25 likes = Full explanation!! Tips, probable scenarios, strategies against each class...
You will ALWAYS look for EVIL Totem, either if you are second or first (against extremely aggressive decks, such as Murloc Paladin, you may consider priorize other more proactive cards). Other cards you should mulligan for are, in priority order, Questing Explorer, Sludge Slurper and last, and ONLY if you are facing a board-filler class, Mogu Fleshshaper. There is a little to talk about Mogu, we will do so if this post gets 10 likes.
The only other card you may consider to keep is Sandstorm Elemental and ONLY against Murloc Paladin, and only if you want to play super safe. You should never Mulligan for it.
I will write first three different versions of this deck depending on which way you want to orientate it, and then I will point out some arguments on it
>>>>>Tempo (more budget) choices: - Zilliax, - Hagatha -- + Mutate x2
>>>>>Control choices: - Hagatha -- + Fire Elemental or + Giggling Inventor
>>>>>Value choices: - Zilliax, - Fire Elemental, - Mind Control Tech --- + Barista Lynchen, + Vulpera Scoundral x2
- Over Mutatex2, I prefer Zilliax since it's a great card to stabilize against those fast aggro decks. On the other hand, I also included Swampqueen Hagatha to get a lot of value against control decks (you could get a huge burst or a big removal out of it). I think that the only reason why you should include Mutate is its combo with Mogu (attack and then evolve it into an 8-drop). However, since there are many options to get an evolve card (lackeys, spells), I wouldn't waste two slots on this.
- I also cut out Barista Lynchen since I already have enough value with Hagatha. Fire Elemental was my choice: nice body and handy battlecry either to catch up tempo or to have a nice 6 dmg burst with your quest hero power.
- I have also seen Vulpera Scoundrel in some lists, but I don't like it at all, since its effect is basically the spell lackey, and including it denies you from including other better value cards.
- Barista Lynchen is not a good option. Although it may seem that the psynergies with this deck could be awesome, they are not. Most of the time, you will get crushed by aggro decks. Technically, you could suck out even more value with her, but this list already has a lot of it (Hagatha and Shudder usually fill your hand unnecessarily). I would include her only if I am facing A LOT of control decks.
STRATEGY. Full explanation (thanks!)
This deck is very versatile and can fit into either a control or midrangey aggro-ish playstyle. This allow it to perform really well against the current meta in general. Before going into each matchup, I would sugges you to keep in mind a few general advices:
1. EVIL Totem is beautiful. Play it on turn 1 with coin (yes, before activating the quest) or don't play it to die at the following turn. Defend it. You can actually win games out of Lackeys only. Their Battlecries are really handy and it will get your quest complete in no time.
3. Sandstorm Elemental is better than a regular AOE spell. It's your trusty weapon against aggro (once you have completed your quest).
4. UPGRADED HERO POWER + DAMAGE LACKEYx2 + WASPx2 = 20 DAMAGE. The amount and the flexibility of this burst makes this deck great. You can use to finish with your high health Control Warrior or to clear midrangey stuff against your Highlander Hunter.
Without further delay, matchups:
Token Druid: Good matchup. Forget about his face. You have enough control over it that you shouldn't risk a possible board fill + Soul of the Forest. Do not even hesitate to use a Sandstorm Elemental for two small minions. Your plan is not letting him expand, and even so, you have MCT to catch up.
Quest Druid: Good matchup. Opposite plan. Push him as much as you can. Trade Crystal Merchant only. Priorize face. His catch up are Hidden Oasis and Oasis Surger, so with your midrange-ish pressure you will be able to burst him down in a final push.
Highlander and Secret Hunter: Hard matchup. For Secret Hunter, make sure to trigger the traps in order so you don't take an unnecessary Explosive Trap on your recently played minions, for example. Try to control the board early and pay attention to Unleash the Hounds. For Highlander, board expanding is usually a good idea (basically because they only tend to have Hounds and Zephrys to board clear).
Highlander and Control Mage: Push face hard and finish off with your burst. MCT can deal with King Phaoris, but you shouldn't let the game be that long.
Murloc Paladin: Reallly good matchup if the opponent is not nastily lucky. You simply wreck them with Sandstorm Elemental. Keep an eye on a possible Coldlight Oracle so the +2 health doesn't suppose too much health for your clears. But honestly, as soon as you have your upgraded hero power, you can let your most evil laugh come out, since Sandstorm Elemental + Bog Slosher will carry you. HOWEVER, the only thing to keep in mind is that Chef Nomi is too much for you to clear. There will be a few turns (around 12-14) where this deck will weaken, and that's your opportunity to push and burst him down, since Nomi will crush you if you keep trading forever.
Quest Paladin: Opposite strategy. Play aggressive and make sure you kill Micro Mummy, but don't waste time on other minions. By the time your opponent has finished the quest, he should be around 10 health. Its late game is insane, but it takes time to shine. Try to get Hexes and save them for Mechano-Egg, but again, your goal is keep pressure.
Combo Priest: Worst matchup by far. You simply don't have an answer for his 12/12 Injured Tol'vir (and that isn't the worst scenario). Don't dare to let a minion alive, since this deck can OTK or Two Turns Kill you: you don't have taunts, and your heals will not be very useful. Try to get Earth Shocks or Hexes. Fortunately, I haven't encountered this deck many times.
Quest Priest: Way more realistic matchup, yet hard. Clear all minions and don't let many damaged minions on board so he cannot complete the quest that fast. Similar to Quest Paladin, this deck has an insane late game, so control the board early and maintain pressure from turn 5 on.
Quest Rogue: Great matchup. Control the board but play noticeably aggressive. His upgraded hero power will make your board some damage, but at that point you should be able to finish the game easily.
Tempo Rogue: Much, MUCH harder matchup. Opposite plan, play defensively. By turn 7 you will have been stabed by Hooked Scimitars severely, but you will (hopefully) hear a soothing buzz to help you (Lifedrinker) with your upgraded hero power, but it may not be enough. Play your minions wisely since your opponent will have many ways to regain tempo.
Quest Shaman (mirror): Show him you are the best quest shaman! Clear Questing Explorer so he cannot combo her with Bog Slosher. Technically, you have less advantage than the regular list, since, in equal conditions, Mogu Fleshshaper + Mutate may be a strong powerplay. Anyway, it's a 50/50, it will end up being a race for the hero power.
Zoo Warlock: Good matchup. Although in general terms you should be clearing his stuff (to avoid a Grim Rally disaster), you have two main targets which cannot be alive: Magic Carpet and Diseased Vulture. As with Token Druid, if you control the board you win.
Control Warrior: You hear it? It's the sound of a mechanized nightmare that will deal a
completely unbalanced amount of 14 damage for 4 mana (Omega Devastator). To be honest, this match isn't as difficult as Combo Priest or Hunter, but it is HECKINGLY DISGUSTING to have such a long game to end up losing most of the times. However, my strategy consists of two points: 1. Maintain pressure wisely (not to little, so Dyn-o-matic clears you, nor too exposed to Warpath or Brawl) and set your opponent to 20 health (after he has played Dr Boom, Mad Genius) 2. BURST HIM DOWN with your magic combo Weaponized Waspx2 Damage Lackey x2 and your hero power, that will deal exactly 20 damage. The reason for this is that it its IMPOSSIBLE to regain tempo once those nasty robots have got rush. Hopefully your opponent will not get casual 7 armor out of that completely unbalanced hero power.
Proof below. I have been doing terribly this September, so the WR has gone down.