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(S14 Legend) Divine Failure Paladin Aggro

  • Last updated Jun 1, 2015 (Blackrock Launch)
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  • 22 Minions
  • 6 Spells
  • 2 Weapons
  • Deck Type: Ranked Deck
  • Deck Archetype: Unknown
  • Crafting Cost: 2920
  • Dust Needed: Loading Collection
  • Created: 5/31/2015 (Blackrock Launch)
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***UPDATES*** I'm still climbing, but there isn't much time left in the season atm, here's me at rank 460ish http://imgur.com/GMV78K7

Well, I guess we have to start with this proof I made it to legend. http://i.imgur.com/1SMHgoj.jpg 

I am not a grinder, and I've never gotten to legend before, in fact I don't really play tons of Hearthstone, Paladin only became my second lv. 60 class this season, and I have no golden heroes. I don't even have a lot of really common legendaries, which is why I mostly play aggro decks, and why I've championed this Paladin deck. 

I know a large number of people hate aggro decks, or face decks, mostly because of what Face Hunter has done to the meta, but that is also why I really like this deck. This deck does indeed go face a lot, and it does indeed get lucky some times and win games against people who think they shouldn't have lost. That is a major thing in Hearthstone, and no matter what anyone says, every game of Hearthstone has some amount of luck involved, even if its just the flow of the draws, a perfect top deck, because it just as easily could be any number of other things. This game is built with randomness on top of randomness. All card games are games of chance to begin with, and while a level of skill will take you a certain distance, luck is just as necessary to achieve your goals. It took me a long time to get past that, that randomness would determine pretty much every game, but that is what gave me the willingness to actually push for legend this season, with a deck most people say couldn't make it, that most people would say is a less efficient version of some other deck, like Zoo or Face Hunter, but every deck comes with its pros and cons, so lets just go into that, cons first, so we can just be grumpy right away.


1) This deck relies almost solely on Divine Favor for card draw, and you won't beat most control decks without drawing at least 1. Also, some times you'll draw it on turn 7+ and the control deck will have already had its big turn will only have 0-3 cards and even if you draw you won't be able to come back. Some times you'll keep Divine Favor because its a druid, and they play Innervate + Innervate + Druid of the Claw on turn 1 and you never get any value off it anyway. It happens, cards serve a purpose but sometimes that purpose never arises and you lose. 

2) Your hero power isn't Life Tap! Zoo gets this really amazing thing that keeps them full of cards and helps them maintain control of the board while killing their opponent.

3) Your hero power isn't Steady Shot! You have to win mostly with the cards you have, if you lose complete control of the board you can't count on your hero power to finish the game off anyway, what a bummer.

4) You're playing aggro. Everyone knows aggro decks require no skill, no effort, and they probably mean you're the most base being in existence and you should just die, forever. Sorry, its just true.


1) No one expects the SPANISH INQUISITION!!!! No wait, that isn't it. Almost no one will think you're playing aggro pally, they will almost all believe you're playing Midrange or Control pally, and some times your opening sequence will fuel this even more and they will be so mad once they realize they took a bunch of damage and didn't use the coin to control your aggression once you Divine Favor on turn 5 for 4+ cards. Surprise is a great strength of any deck in the meta, a random tech card, or just a total blind spot no one expects. Its fun to win games that way. It feels good to find that weak spot and exploit it. I makes you feel like you're at least smarter than someone even if you're a garbage person playing an aggro deck.

2) This deck is resilient. You have your 4 base Divine Shield minions, and you have 4 other ways to grant a Divine Shield, plus you hero power makes more guys. This means you can force people into using AoE either on a bad board where it doesn't kill everything, or blowing it to kill two minions and 2 recruits before you come back out with even more stuff. Learning to trade away minions to keep up Divine Shields as protection is important, yes, it means if they don't have the AoE you killed off some of your damage and extended the game, but if they don't have the AoE you probably win anyway, and if they do, it means it doesn't actually catch them up that much, they spend a turn killing either half you board or a bunch of replaceable chaff.

3) This deck will test your knowledge of the game. If you want to become a better player one of the best ways to do that is learning to play a new deck. You'll learn to play around the opponents cards, when not to play around the opponents cards, and when the play to your outs. This isn't a deck that you can just pick up and run to legend, it took me most of the season, playing only pally on ladder, only when I had a daily that didn't make me play another class. I probably spent the majority of the season just slowly slowly climbing and tuning and when I realized I could actually make it to legend I decided to dig in and give it my all. This deck taught me to interpret the meta, make dynamic changes to gain ranks, and never give up on a deck you know works.

4) You'll playing aggro! You are a smart, capable player, that has decided the best use of your time trying to ladder is to play a deck with faster games, but no less skill. You have to milk all the value you can out of every card, because on average they are much lower impact than midrange or control players, and you've learned to do that. People will still hate you for it, but so what. You've got the time and skill and cards to play the decks you have and you're doing the best you can with them, and you're winning, so throw them a DX "Suck It" and move on to the next one.

I'd like to say a few things about the deck before we get into match ups. This is a fairly aggressive deck, and you will want to spend plenty of time attacking you opponent, but as with almost every aggro deck, even face hunter, you need to know when to make a good trade. This deck in particular is very testing about what to trade with and when because you often want to protect Divine Shields while also maintaining some amount of board presence. You have to decide, even against aggro decks, when its better to use your weapon to clear and take some face damage, or to trade of minions and preserve health.

Another huge thing is knowing when to just go ahead and Divine Favor or try to empty your hand. Most of the time you're only going to be able to play 1-2 cards a turn for the first few turns, and you opponent may be playing 0-1, but they will also have chances for critical mass turns, where they will play 3-4 cards all at once, completely rebalancing a Divine Favor. Rogues, Druids, Priests and Warriors, though patron more than control, are decks with either high card synergy and low card cost, or in case of druids, just Innervate. If you can draw 4 cards and you will only get 5 best case, but you opponent is going into turn 6+ its probably best to just draw your cards because if they have a 3-4 card turn and you then only get to draw 2-3 cards that could easily spell game, because not only did you likely commit more to the board, you're now getting less out of your only source of card draw.

 Now, lets look at some Match up and Mulligan strategies.


There are a few varieties of druid but the strategy and mulligan don't change much. Druids best draws will involve Innervate, because it will make it much harder for you to gain Divine Favor value. The more Taunts they run the less likely you are to win, but its certainly not impossible. Protect Divine Shields and try either force out swipe before playing Muster, or way for the Quarter+Muster turn and you'll be fine. Mulligans are the same with or without the coin.

Mulligan: Cards to keep: Argent Squire, Worgen Infiltrator, Shielded Minibot, Faerie DragonArgent Protector


There are 3 varieties of hunter, but IMO they are all the same effective deck most of the time. Face, Midface, and Midrange pretty much all have cheap minions and weapons and traps and they are trying to get ahead and finish you with their hero power. This deck is designed to try to fight that as much as possible. You can contest the board early, and while its try you don't have any minions with Taunt, Coghammer is a workhorse. Also, Divine Favor does something almost all the time in this match up even if its not until the crunch time turns, because even Face Hunter holds on to those last few points of damage until they know they've got the kill. The biggest problem with hunter as a class is its Hero power and traps. Mad Scientist is a super crazy value card, and even some of the Midface and Midrange hunters are now running 1 Explosive Trap. This card alone can be your biggest nightmare. It kills every minion in your deck except Quartermaster and buffed Silver Hand Recruits, and it can be hard to maintain a Divine Shield, especially if they also draw Unleash the Hounds. So that is the deal. Hunter has 2 awesome AoE spells, that also happen to be able to deal you damage while totally owning your board, however if you play smartly, don't over flood the board, always set up for Quartermaster plays, and play to your outs you'll win. Ironbeak Owl is one of if not the most important card against Hunter early. If you see the signal that its Face/Midface you want to have it to stop Mad Scientist, they will never keep traps, but they will always keep Scientist, and a free trap is too much tempo most of the time. If they show to be pure Midrange you likely don't need to silence Mad Scientist, but you do need to silence Sludge Belcher so you can push through and win, also silencing and early Haunted Creeper can buy you enough time to take the board close the game before Belchers matter. Mulligans are probably the weirdest for this class out of all of them. 


Card to Keep without the Coin: Any single 1 drop, Shielded Minibot, Ironbeak OwlArgent Protector

Cards to Keep with the Coin: Up to two 1 drops, Shielded Minibot, Ironbeak Owl, Argent Protector, Coghammer, Muster for Battle, Quartermaster, only if you have Muster already.


There are 3 mage decks atm, 1 of them is pretty much an auto win, one of them is all about their opening, the other one is all about the coin.

Against Freeze mage you're pretty much gravy. You're going to come out stupid fast, if you have Divine Favor you just can't lose, your minions are too sticky, and you'll just have infinite cards to kill them before they ever even start to burn you out.

Against Mech Mage the entire game is dependant on how they start. If they have a Mech Warper and you can't kill it you've probably lost because they'll definitely have a mech for the Goblin Blastmage and you'll be so far behind you'll never recover.

Against Tempo/Flamewaker Mage if they have the coin its fairly likely you lose. Some point either turn 3 or turn 4 they are going to have a tempo turn and kill almost all you minions and have a Flamewaker you can't kill. If this happens its game over, if not you probably win. Having the coin isn't the be all, some times they still just have a crazy good draw and they roll well with Arcane Missles and Flamewaker and you are just never in it, but it happens way more often when they have the coin.

Mulligans could vary based on match up, but because of how favorable some match up are more than others they are based more on that they guessing if your opponent is on one deck over another. So that makes the coin the biggest factor.


Cards to Keep without the Coin: Argent Squire (if you this and Abusive Sergeant keep it), Worgen Infiltrator (if you have this and Dire Wolf Alpha keep it), Shielded Minibot, Faerie DragonMuster for Battle

Cards to Keep with the Coin: Same as above, but Also Coghammer and Divine Favor are keepable here, and if you happen to have Faerie Dragon and Argent Protector you can keep that.


There are a couple varieties of Pally, but its more like vanilla ice cream with different toppings. Standard Control and Dragon Pally are about the same deck, and play very similar, so the main thing is to try to baitConsecrate and be prepared to deal with Muster for Battle. This is one of the tougher match ups because they often play a lot of healing and so if they have Minibot, into Muster, into Consecrate they will likely be able to stabilize until they hit the late game, this means you probably have to have Divine Favor once early, and you'll need the second one after they Lay on Hands to stay in it. If by some crazy chance you run into the another Aggro pally hope they aren't playing this exact list, or that they get a worst draw than you. If either play gets Divine Favor value that player likely wins, otherwise this much more Divine Shield and weapon heavy build will likely outpace other aggro builds. in terms of Value. If you ever get to Quartermaster 2 or more Recruits you almost assuredly win. Mulligans do change slightly with the coin.


Cards to Keep without the Coin: Argent Squire, Shielded Minibot, Argent Protector (you can keep Worgen Infiltrator or Leper Gnome if you have this card), Muster for Battle (if you have this and an Argent Squire or Shielded Minibot you can keep Dire Wolf Alpha)

Card to Keep with the Coin: The only difference is if you have Muster and Quartermaster you can keep it, but only if you have Argent Squire or exactly Worgen Infiltrator/Leper Gnome + Argent Protector. Also, you can keep Worgen Infiltrator and Leper Gnome with Coghammer but you would other mulligan all your cards.


This is the nightmare. They have multiple AoEs, often Wild Pyromancer. Shadow Madness and Cabal Shadow Priest can't pretty much target whatever they want and stealing a Divine Shielded minion is pretty bad. However, Priest also have some very clunky hands, and if you're lucky they'll assume you're playing Control and you'll have a chance to win before they know what happened. The big issue is you often want to keep Divine Shields to protect against AoE, but you also don't want your opponent to steal it and use it against you. Priest also often has very explosive turns in the mid to late game and if you don't get Divine Favor value (3+ cards) you'll almost for sure fizzle out. Luckily priest is a very small portion of the meta, and you shouldn't run into too many. Mulligans are about combos against priest much more than specific cards.

Mulligans: Cards combos to Keep: Argent Squire + Abusive Sergent, Worgen Infiltrator/Shielded Minibot + Dire Wolf Alpha, with the coin, Muster for Battle + Quartermaster



This is very very likely to be Oil, however on occasion it will be some weird tempo deck, but its still pretty much the same thing as Oil with a few different cards because they couldn't play normal Oil rogue well enough so they changed it up. Either way this match up varies dramatically based on who is going first and who is going second. If they have the coin you are probably in way more trouble, you have few cards to find your best mulligans and they have an easy combo enabler with the coin. If you have the coin you can mulligan more cards to find a more punishing start and you'll know that you probably have a great chance of coming up with a win. Try your best to keep as many active Divine Shields as possible, and don't waste Muster for Battle without Quartermaster, they will have to spend too much time trying to answer you, and hopefully when they Sprint you'll Divine Favor and seal the deal. 


Keepable cards without the Coin: Argent Squire, Worgen Infiltrator, Shielded Minibot, Argent Protector, Divine Favor (only if you have a 1 drop into 2 drop hand already)

Keepable with the Coin: Same as above except also Faerie Dragon and Coghammer are probably the 2 best cards with the coin.


Shaman has 2 major archtypes, Mech and then all the Midrange variants. Mech can be a tough one if you can't answer Mech Warper, but you are pretty much never soft to Whirling Zap-o-matic which is nice. Midrange is the tougher match because you have to mulligan for Mech because it can open fast and end the game before you. Against Mech obviously the key is keeping them off Mechs. If they draw both Powermace you will likely fall too far behind to their midgame cards like Mechnical Yeti and Fire Elemental, though Ironbeak Owl on a buffed Piloted Shredder can swing the game. If you can keep their board clear they have no card draw and you'll likely win unless you draw both Divine Favor, which are likely to draw you 0-1 cards are most. Against Midrange they often have a bit slower deck and a touch of card draw, plus they have to battle overload so Divine Favor can generally have value before turn 8 after that they are probably out of cards and they are topdecking way stronger than you. Protect Divine Shields, trade for Totems and always have a back up plan for Lightning Storm. I know there is that weird Egg Shaman, its mostly midrange, hope you draw and early Owl.


Cards to Keep without the Coin: Worgen Infiltrator, Shielded Minibot, Faerie Dragon, Argent Protector, Muster for Battle.

Care to Keep with Coin, Same as above, but of course you can keep Quartermaster with Muster, and you can keep Coghammer and Ironbeak Owl


Warlock is the hardest mulligan, and a pretty tough match up in general. Zoo and Handlock are two totally different decks, and you'll likely only beat Handlock without a Divine Favor if you're fairly lucky, over Divine Favor is often terrible against Zoo, though sometimes its fine it means you can pretty much never keep it which is sad. Zoo is tough, Imp-losion and to a lesser extent Imp Gang Boss are often a big too high value to beat. Imp-losion even for 2 likely killed your best minion, plus game them something that will trade for 2 more, if they rolls 3 or 4 its that much worse. If the opponent ever has Knife Juggler + Imp-losion its game over. However the match isn't a total loss. You have Muster for Battle + Quartermaster, and as long as you've got a foothold on the board Consecrate can rebalance after an Imp-losion. One of the most important if not slightly insane seeming plays is to pop any early Nerubian Eggs you don't have Ironbeak Owl for. If you let them get a trade of any sort with the 0/2 before it become the Nerubian you can easily get put out of the game, so don't be afraid to use a Worgen Infiltrator or Shielded Minibot to pop a turn 2 or 3 egg, even if it seems counter intuitive. Handlock is pretty much a walk in the park if you draw Divine Favor. Between your shields and Owls you can survive and punch through anything.


Cards to Keep without the Coin: Argent Squire, Worgen Infiltrator, Shielded Minibot, Argent ProtectorMuster for Battle

Cards to Keep with the Coin: Same as above, with the usual note about being able to keep Quartermaster if you have Muster for Battle, and Coghammer is keepable. Also, Divine Favor is keepable if you have a good curved hand, you might get to draw even against Zoo so its worth the risk.


We all know about the current Warrior decks, the mulligans don't change the match up doesn't change that much either. Control Warrior is actually slightly easier than Patron because it generally runs a couple less Whirlwind effects, and obviously it can win the game on turn a bit faster. Divine Favor is super important here, you will almost always draw 4+ cards and you'll need them to push through a bunch of armor/kill your opponent before they combo you. If Patron gets a fast Combo hand you'll probably just lose, but when they miss you almost always win because they don't have enough armor to maintain.

Mulligan: Cards to Keep: Argent Squire, Shielded Minibot, Faerie Dragon, Argent Protector (if you have this you can keep Worgen Infiltrator), Divine Favor, if you have a decent curve, Coghammer.

 I don't have some thing that keeps track of my win loss record, but I can say I didn't feel lower than 50% to beat anyone but Priest, and I felt favored against Hunter, Mage, Warrior, Druid, Rogue, Handlock, and Shaman. If you have any questions about the deck or more particular match up information due to vagueness just ask.

 As a final note, the Deck in question is named Divine Failure, awhile Fire and Light and Supa Aggro were testing variants I used. I chose to call it this because of the high Divine Shield count, Divine Favor, and my original scepticism of it actually working. I think the deck is good, and most acts like White Weenie decks in Magic: The Gathering, using small efficient creatures and buffs to win games and come out ahead of the opponent before it can finalize is game plan. Obviously Hearthstone and Magic aren't really all that similar but its just a comparison similar to how Zoo took its name from the Magic deck.