Hey guys, I'm MoogleMog, a frequent legend player who enjoys brewing and playing off-meta decks. My friend DuskSculptor and I wanted to build a deck around Snowfury Giant, and this deck is the result of our testing and refining. DuskSculptor successfully used the deck to climb from Rank 10 to Rank 5. I started using the deck above 5 and have been hanging around Rank 2-3.
The list utilizes Shaman's removal cards for survival and then follows it up with huge swing turns and value off of jades, evolve, and discounted fat bodies. Note that the deck has a high skill ceiling, as overload cards, Doomsayer, Stonehill Defender, Volcano, and Evolve/Devolve shenanigans take a lot of skill to use optimally.
Added Doomsayer usage guide, renamed the deck
Tweaked the deck to improve faster matchups and updated the guide.
Thanks for the responses! Matchup guides have been added.
- Evolve: enables crazy tempo swings when combined with Doppelgangster, also has good synergy with Stonehill Defender and Jade Spirit. Also serves to preserve a damaged board as well.
- Devolve: premium removal that works mostly as a discounted AOE silence.
- Jade Claws: earlygame MVP, this card acts as removal, tempo, and increases the jade counter. Also overloads (1) which discounts Snowfury Giant.
- Maelstrom Portal: premium AOE removal, amazing when combo-ed with Devolve against token decks, sometimes just a 1 dmg ping that puts a body on the board.
- Bloodmage Thalnos: extra cycle, strong synergy with Maelstrom Portal and Lightning Storm
- Doomsayer: Strong turn 2 play against aggro, also strong after clearing the board with Volcano/Lightning Storm.
- Stonehill Defender: great defensive tool against aggro and a proactive play against control. Remember to check how many totems you’ve played before picking Thing from Below. Fantastic followup to turn 2 Doomsayer, also a great way to stall before playing Volcano.
- Mana Tide Totem: card draw and must remove threat that can make your opponent play awkwardly. Fantastic followup to turn 2 Doomsayer, don't be afraid to dump the card to cycle 1 card and absorb 3 damage.
- Spirit Echo: potentially insane value, pseudo card draw, beware of Devolve and Mass Dispel.
- Hex: still premium removal, but not quite as premium as it used to be.
- Jade Lightning: reach/removal, jade counter.
- Earth Elemental: fat body taunt, reduces cost of Snowfury Giant.
- Doppelgangster: extreme synergy with Thrall, Deathseer and Evolve.
- Thrall, Deathseer: enables crazy tempo swings, can be used to “heal” injured minions. Knowing when to play this card is key to success with this deck. It's often better to save 2 mana to use with the hero power after playing this card to get rid of game losing evolves (Anomalus, Ticking Abomination)
- Volcano: premium removal for both wide and tall boards, make sure to count carefully
- Aya Blackpaw: jade counter, sticky body, premium Spirit Echo target (though be careful of silence/transformation effects).
- Snowfury Giant: fat body that can be discounted - evolve effects heal it, great target for Spirit Echo
Alternative Card Choices/Cards to Try:
- Jinyu Waterspeaker: if the meta contains a lot of burn/direct face damage, this card provides great healing with a solid statline.
- Jade Spirit: jade counter, Kalimos, Primal Lord activator, good Evolve/Thrall, Deathseer target.
- Kalimos, Primal Lord: very high utility card, can remove, heal, generate a board, or act as reach.
- Paladin (Heavily Favored): Mulligan for Jade Claws, Devolve, Maelstrom Portal, Doomsayer, Lightning Storm, and if you have at least one of these or the coin, also go for Volcano. This matchup is straightforward – deny them the board as much as possible, try to save Devolve for scary Murloc Warleader boards or Spikeridged Steed and Hex for Tirion Fordring. Once you clear their board and follow up with a big tempo swing from Doppelgangster+Evolve, Snowfury Giant, Earth Elemental, or big jades, the game is usually won. If it’s Control Paladin, you have more value so just play it slow and try to get a greedy Spirit Echo. Don’t forget Equality+Wild Pyromancer/Consecration.
- Shaman (Slightly Favored): Mulligan for Jade Claws, Maelstrom Portal, Doomsayer, Lightning Storm, and if you have at least one of these or the coin, also go for Volcano. This matchup usually comes down to who plays Doppelgangster+Evolve first. You have superior removal, so do your best to play around Bloodlust and take the board when you can. Hex is primarily for Aya Blackpaw or scary Evolve minions. Enemy Shamans will have difficulty dealing with Snowfury Giant, as Devolve has no effect on them. Beware of playing Earth Elemental for the opposite reason.
- Priest (Slightly Unfavored – Heavily Unfavored): Mulligan for Mana Tide Totem, Doppelgangster+Evolve. This matchup is tough… There are generally two ways to win: a quick Doppelgangster+Evolve that the Priest can’t answer, or a Doppelgangster+Thrall, Deathseer after he’s already played Shadowreaper Anduin. Keep in mind all of Priest’s AOE: Kazakus potion, Dragonfire Potion, and the Shadowreaper Anduin battlecry. Sometimes you can afford to play around them, sometimes you can’t. For Big Priest, pray they don’t have Barnes on turn 4...
- Hunter (Slight Favored - Favored): Mulligan for Jade Claws, Maelstrom Portal, Doomsayer, Lightning Storm, Devolve if you can pair it with an AOE, and if you have at least one of these or the coin, also go for Volcano. Hex and Devolve annoying deathrattle minions and try to reduce face damage taken. Once you get the board, Hunter will have trouble taking it back.
- Druid (Slightly Unfavored – Heavily Favored): This matchup is tough if you don’t know which Druid deck you’re up against. Aggro/Token Druid is a pretty easy matchup – same mulligan as Paladin. Devolve, Maelstrom Portal, Doomsayer. Lightning Storm, and Volcano are MVPs here. Few plays are more satisfying than answering a Bittertide Hydra with Volcano or Living Mana with Devolve+Maelstrom Portal. For Jade Druid, you need to hard mulligan for Doppelgangster+Evolve and hope they don't get too much ramp. Once you Doppelgangster+Evolve your way to a big board, pressure face and win the game before he can create armies of giant green men.
- Mage (Unfavored – Favored): This matchup can be tough due to the numerous mage archetypes. Quest Mage is unfavored, but you can still pull off wins with Doppelgangster+Evolve. Use Devolve/Hex on Doomsayer and try to push face as much as possible. Unexpected Evolve minions can sometimes win you the game (Nerubian Unraveler, Nozdormu, etc). Secret Mage is pretty even – use Doomsayer, Doppelgangster, Stonehill Defender to proc Mirror Entity and use cheap spells to proc Counterspell (Evolve, Devolve, Spirit Echo, sometimes Maelstrom Portal). The Grinder Mage matchup is pretty favored – you outvalue them, so just play it slow.
- Warrior (Even – Slightly Favored): Mulligan for Jade Claws, Maelstrom Portal, Stonehill Defender. If you’re up against a N’zoth, the Corruptor warrior, Devolve/Hex both Direhorn Hatchlings – if you can do that, the game is easy. Try to avoid playing into Whirlwind+Sleep with the Fishes and Brawl by watching how you distribute damage and not over-committing. Do the same for Dog’s Fatigue Warrior: keep pressuring him while hoping he runs out of removal. Pirate Warrior is much more favorable since the Fiery War Axe nerf, so just preserve your HP and keep his board clear. Don’t be greedy with Spirit Echo – sometimes a single Stonehill Defender is a good enough target if you need taunts badly.
- Rogue (Favored): Mulligan for Jade Claws, Maelstrom Portal, Doomsayer, Stonehill Defender, and if you have at least one of these or the coin, also go for Volcano. Devolve is one of the best answers to Edwin VanCleef. For Aggro/Elemental Rogue, keep damage taken as low as possible and swing the board when you can. Volcano is MVP removal here, but beware of playing Earth Elemental if you think he has Vilespine Slayer or Plague Scientist in hand. If it’s miracle, play around Vanish by avoiding over-committing to the board until both are used. Remove any Arcane Giant ASAP - if they cost 0, he has Valeera the Hollow in play, and he still has Vanish, Devolve can at least help prevent a flood of additional Arcane Giants.
- Warlock (Even - Favored?): Mulligan for Doomsayer, Stonehill Defender, Mana Tide Totem, Hex, Devolve, Volcano. If zoo is prevalent, use the same mulligan as Paladin. Haven’t had much experience against Warlock, so can’t give much advice here. If you can, save Devolve/Hex for Abyssal Enforcer and Despicable Dreadlord so Bloodreaver Gul'dan doesn’t revive an insane board. Earth Elemental is really good early since Warlock has expensive single-target removal.
Tech Choices/Swappable Spots:
- Swappable spots: Spirit Echo, 2nd Volcano, Bloodmage Thalnos
- Against Mage: Eater of Secrets
- Against Aggro: -1 Spirit Echo, +1 Jinyu Waterspeaker
- Against Control: -1 Volcano, -1/2 Doomsayerl. Add +1/2 Saronite Chain Gang or +1/2 Flamewreathed Faceless
- Make sure to plan your turns in advance, especially when using overload cards.
- Volcano is a very high skill card. Make sure to count Volcano damage carefully and trade in cards before playing it if you can clear the entire board. If you have a couple of fat bodies and they have lots of small minions, Volcano will likely destroy their minions while only damaging yours. Nothing beats answering Bittertide Hydra with Volcano :)
- Best targets for Spirit Echo: Stonehill Defender, Aya Blackpaw, discounted Snowfury Giant, good Doppelgangster+Evolve boards.
- Doppelgangster+Spirit Echo can be a strong way to refuel an empty hand, especially while Thrall, Deathseer is in play (but remember not to evolve after playing Spirit Echo).
- Don't forget the 5 armor from Thrall, Deathseer - it can make the difference between life and death against aggro.
How to use Doomsayer effectively:
- Drop the Doomsayer on turn 2 or 3 (maybe even coin it out on turn 1) to remove the opponent’s 1 or 2 drop(s), while also preventing them from making a meaningful turn 2-3 play and giving you initiative. Example: against another Shaman who coins out Primalfin Totem, playing a turn 2 Doomsayer will remove both the totem and the murloc as well as force him to waste his turn using his hero power. When it’s your turn again, you can play a Mana Tide Totem or Stonehill Defender on an uncontested board.
- Follow up a big AOE with a Doomsayer to prevent your opponent from refilling the board after a clear. Example: after using Lightning Storm or Volcano to clear most (if not all) of your opponent’s minions, play a Doomsayer with your remaining mana. Now your opponent has to deal with the Doomsayer before they can refill the board, which usually means that they simply pass their turn and give you initiative.
- Contest a board with less than 7 attack. Example: a Warlock plays a 4/10 Twilight Drake on an empty board, you respond with Doomsayer. Now your opponent needs Shadow Bolt or some other removal in order to save his 4/10 minion from a 2 drop. Keep in mind what your opponent can play and how likely it is that he can clear the Doomsayer. A taunt totem or Stonehill Defender can help the chances that your Doomsayer survives and clears the board.
- Play Doomsayer as a soft taunt to soak up damage while you try to draw removal. It can also bait out cards like Devolve and Vilespine Slayer, which makes Earth Elemental safer to play.