1 - Quick introduction
Hi Hearthpwn community!
We’re Jumarti and Weedovore, two die-hard Rogue fans who enjoy experimenting, testing and theorizing for the Rogue class with the goal of competition in mind; and Kobolds and Catacombs with the new secrets, Fal'dorei Strider and the Kingsbane, is bringing a lot of new possibilities to the class that caught our attention and allured us to join forces for the construction and constant refinement of a competitive Miracle Rogue deck exploiting the potential of the new cards.
Finally, feeling satisfied with the deck we have been working on, we considered that it would be worth to show it to the Hearthstone community so anyone looking for either a competitive Miracle Rogue deck, a serious approach on the new cards or just and interesting deck to have fun with can get a solid starting point. Also, we as authors and players benefit a lot from the interaction with the community since the discussions the deck generates are going to be very helpful for us to polish it as much as it needs with the ideas the other users share.
Tempo Kingsbane variant
After a few days of practice and enhancement to our first Miracle Rogue shell, we paid some close attention to the feed-backs of our fellow Rogue players and we've seen a lot their desire to have a more effective deck against Aggro match-ups. For those reasons, we've decided to work on a second list called "Tempo Kingsbane" with a more proactive playstyle and a better board domination in the early game. After a bunch of research on HSReplay, Reddit, and a very instructive discussion with the very dedicated Wild format Oil Rogue builder Kohai_ , we're finally ready to share with you our second list.
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Both decks will have their own summary and guide for you guys to be able to choose between which one interests you the most, but still keep a strong link with the players preferring the other one, in order to make us share more of our experiences playing our favorite Kingsbane decks, enriching both decks at the same time !
2 - Summary of the deck's game plan
For anywone wanting to quickly understand the main strenghts and goals of our deck.
Tempo Kingsbane Summary
Tempo Kingsbane is an archetype somewhat new to the metagame, although those of you who have been playing before the creation of the Standard might find it familiar as it is very similar to an Oil Rogue deck. In the same way as Kingsbane Miracle, this deck is able to pull out very strong Tempo plays and card draws effects, although this time the playstyle is much more proactive, meaning that instead of playing defensively and stacking answer cards in your hand before throwing them with Gadgetzan Auctioneer and recycling them, you will be playing a lot more of your cards early to dominate the board and build up pressure, before playing your Elven Minstrel and Sprint to refill your hand with threats and answers and aim for the lethal play. Since you'll not be forced to play some of your spells in a sub-optimal way anymore, to activate the card draw effect of Gadgetzan Auctioneer (Backstab on your own minions; Eviscerate face early when the board is cleared, etc.), you are completely free to use your cards in the most efficient ways possible. That said, playing everything efficiently is also going to augment the level of decision-making needed to play the deck correctly. Planning multiple turns ahead, analizing your options and understanding the tides of the game to create windows of opportunity for you to do your weakest tempo plays (mainly playing Elven Minstrel Sprint) when it's not going to cost you too much will be very important. So in the end, just like Miracle Rogue, the skill ceiling is very high and the deck rewards extemely well its best players.
Compared to Kingsbane Miracle, we'll be using Kingsbane to dominate the board in the early game first, then quickly start dishing out tons of damages unpreventable with removals to lower our opponent's health pool and allow our Eviscerate and Leeroy Jenkins to be used for the lethal play. In certain ways, our tools are pretty comparable to those of a Pirate Warrior : Kingsbane 1/3,3/3 and 5/3 statlines make up for N'Zoth's First Mate weapon, Fiery War Axe and Arcanite Reaper, and Eviscerate can be compared to Heroic Strike. The main differences being that we're focusing less on the proactive build up of threats and more on the interactivity of controlling the board, and that we have some value and tempo tools to slighly change our playstyle against control decks and regularly refill our hand with threats before going back into the fray with some huge tempo swings, which in term will most likely send your opponent to his demise unless he finds a way to out-tempo you with a combo kill.
Managing our draw tools is another important aspect of the deck, that will require lots of practice to be perfect. We have access to two types of draw : "raw draws" (every case of "Draw X Cards" : drawing at the beginning of your turn; playing Fan of Knives, Sprint, etc.) and "fetch draws" (every case of "Draw X of a certain type of cards" : Cavern Shinyfinder and Elven Minstrel). Apart from the fact that fetch draws give you a certain capacity to predict what they'll bring you (the easiest being Cavern Shinyfinderthat'll always draw your Kingsbane), they also reduce the amount of certain types of cards in your deck; something that we also call "deck thinning". Considering the potential of Fal'dorei Strider's free Leyline Spider and the diversity of effects present in the deck, thinning your deck properly before using raw card draw effects will have a very important impact on your RNG. The general rule of thumb being that you'll always want to use your fetch draw effects first, then use your raw draw effects to have more chances not only to bring one or more Leyline Spider, but also to draw your high-tempo spells.
This management can make Sprint excessively strong; as an example : with good management, you'll very regularly be able to assemble a Preparationand a Sprint in your hand on turn 6+, having played most of your other cards in hand to put pressure on your opponent, and then use Preparation + Sprint, bringing 1-2 Leyline Spider, and use the rest of your mana to play an Eviscerate or a Sap, which in total is comparable to a 6 mana Ultimate Infestation ! Obviously not 100% similar in term of raw numbers, but absolutely simlar in term of impact and tempo push during a game.
Kingsbane Miracle summary
Miracle Rogue is an archetype pretty dependent on RNG but somewhat consistend as the game progresses, capable of pulling very strong Tempo plays and generate a lot of Card Advantage, which allows it to shape it's gameplan depending on the opponent's deck and remarkably have some ways to win against any deck. Because of that, it's an archetype based on decision-making and skills to mitigate the impact of RNG, which gives it a very high skill ceiling and makes it extremely rewarding as you master it.
Kingsbane Miracle is a deck that follows the same principles as every Tempo-Oriented Miracle Rogue deck, which are using a lot of efficient Tempo tools and cheap spells to fight against faster deck's early game or dominate it against slower decks, and then use Gadgetzan Auctioneer along with those very cheap spells to cycle through the deck in the mid-game, and either smother fast decks by having more ressources than they do, or continuously develop threats against slow decks and overrun their defensive kit.
Kobolds and Catacombs added some very refined tools to the archetype that we're using in our deck.
Fal'dorei Strider acts as decent 4-drop that transforms into a win condition as the game progresses by pulling out free 4/4 from the deck, turning him into a minion worth 16/16 points of stats. Gadgetzan Auctioneer allows us to accelerate the process of Leyline Spidercreation, which gives us some form of control on the development of the pack of 4/4, and an extremly strong Tempo tool against fast decks that allows us to dominate the board.
Kingsbane, along with Deadly Poison, Cavern Shinyfinder and Leeching Poison, makes up for a very potent weapon that can both serve as multiples cheap removals to help us fight faster deck's minions in the early game and get out of range of burst cards by gaining some HP back and an infinite source of board domination and face damage against slower decks, thanks to the card's ability to permanently keep enchantments and come back in the deck once it's destroyed by Oozes or runs out of stacks.
- The highest-priority cards you'll always want to keep
- Swashburglar : Get that Patches the Pirate out of the deck asap ! ;-)
- Fal'dorei Strider : Playing him right on turn 4 allows you to start pressuring out your opponent very quickly.
- Deadly Poison : Crucial to make Kingsbane strong, but if you have to use it on the Hero Power to save the early game, it's still completely worth it.
- Backstab : Combo-activator; tempo gain; always finds a fitting target in the early game and allows you to dominate it.
- Kingsbane or Cavern Shinyfinder : Having at least one of them before the mid-game is very strong if you have a Deadly Poison ready.
If you're playing second and will get The Coin, Edwin is pretty much always a good keep. A 4/4 (or more with 0 mana spells) on turn 2 is going to win you a bunch of turns during which you'll be able to rebuild your hand.
He's also a good keep if you're playing first and have a Backstab. He then be easily played as 4/4 on turn 3 with the tempo swing of removing something with Backstab. You can also delay him a bit if it means he'll easily get stronger with some 1-mana card or Preparation you have in hand.
In the end, your Edwin VanCleef plays are going to be better as you start mastering the deck and won't generally be awesome right away. The general rule of thumb is that against classes that can't deal easily with a big Edwin (Druids, Rogues in the early game) or the majority of aggro decks, investing a lot into Edwin is definetely worth it. Paying attention to what you'll be able to do in the following turn also makes you consider your Edwin plays better.
Note that if you quickly pull out a 4/4 Edwin against a Priest, he's going to be a pain in the ass to deal with for him and impact the game greatly.
Although you generally don't want to keep those cards in your opening hand, if you literally see the auto-win play in your opening hand (let's say Counterfeit Coin + The Coin + Edwin VanCleef, or Preparation + Mimic Pod/Fan of Knives + Edwin VanCleef) and your opponent cannot deal with it, you just won a free game by without even having had to be too cocky !
Kingsbane is a very good looking card, fun and with a lot of potential that can be exploited if you build the deck with the correct support for it as it works very well to control the board, can give a long living Lifesteal when combined with Leeching Poison, something that a lot of rogue players have asked impatiently, and it may give you the victory on some fatigue matchups as it will go back to your deck every time it's destroyed. In other words, it has the potential to be a strong win condition for its infinite longevity with multiple functions.
Anyway, due to being a card that needs too much support to be strong it faces the problem of being only one (1) in your deck as a lot of times it will be hard to get on your early draws, which may make your support cards dead cards as long as you don't draw it. Because of this, Cavern Shinyfinder and the overall drawing ability of Miracle Rogue gives the card an ideal shell to be played inside.
- Which weapon enchantments to carry
From all the weapon enchantments and tech cards available, we decided to go with x2 Deadly Poison and x1 Leeching Poison. Then, these was the thoughts we had about the more common weapon enchantments and tech cards available:
- Deadly Poison: best card, works fine for board control even with Hero Power, Shadowblade or other weapons and synergizes with Gadgetzan Auctioneer.
- Leeching Poison: the key the heavens of Lifesteal weapons. 1 copy is fine as it will mostly be useless with Hero Power, becoming a dead card if you don’t have Kingsbane and the second copy won't do anything. That said, 2 copies may be good on a more weapon-oriented deck that contains Shadowblade too.
- Envenom Weapon: we don't like it in this deck since it’s not necessary for Kingsbane to kill bigger minions because Deadly Poison already allows you to do so; it's also a bit is too expensive for miracle plays with Gadgetzan Auctioneer.
- Naga Corsair, Southsea Squidface and Captain Greenskin: good minions for a more weapon or minion-oriented deck. Naga Corsair and Southsea Squidface could be useful too in some miracle decks as 4-drops, but that's a matter of preference.
- Doomerang: can work really well with the Kingsbane kit on this deck, but as it is a Miracle deck and there are already enough weapon based cards, some other weapon-free spells for Gadgetzan Auctioneer are more relevant; however, Doomerang could be a good tech card that may be included in the future and it should be better in a deck more focused on weapons in general.
Generally, she has such a strong impact in the late game that can turn an almost lost game into our favor with the many fun and powerful combos she allows us to do. The problem with her is that in the expansion's first week's meta aggro and tempo decks are very strong and present on ladder, and thus a lot of times it is going to be hard to reach a moment where you can exploit her utility to win, so it is going to be a dead card in your hand a lot of times.
- The importance of 4-drops
4-drops are the keystone of a Miracle Rogue deck. It's the average level of mana where cheap removals start to be less effective at dealing with the card just by themselves, so against aggro, having weak 4-drops or not having enough of them may force you to spend multiple cards to deal with the opponent's 4-5 drops, which leads to less cards for Auctioneer and eventually running out of resources. Against control, that difficulty to cheap-remove 4 drops makes it that you generally start putting pressure on turn 4. Moreover, playing Fal'dorei Strider also creates some win conditions.
Drawing Patches the Pirate in the early game can be very bad, but it's much more probable that you'll pull him from the deck with Swashburglar as you're running two (2) of them and doing your mulligan in favor of this, so that's a managable concern. The important reason to play Patches the Pirate is the strong impact it has on the early game, needed against the other agro and tempo decks common in this meta; it helps very efficiently to deal with the little bodies along with your weapon and Backstab, giving you more time to set up a strong Kingsbane, all of that for free 90% of the games.
- The new Rogue Secrets
They all look interesting, specially Evasion to potentially get extra turns in Miracle decks, but they don’t seem as obvious as other cards on this deck for now. They have to be tested first before getting added into this deck.
- Only 1 Vilespine Slayer
Right now Vilespine Slayer has very few good targets during an overall game because the proactive game right now is more designed around very small minions and face damage cards. For example, you can see that Bonemare, compared to previous metagame, is completely absent at the moment.
Then, Vilespine Slayer sometimes become a dead card on hand on the early game and sometimes it makes you spend some 0-mana spells in order to activate its combo and kill one of those small minions. Because of this carrying only 1 of them is a good idea.
- Only 1 Cavern Shinyfinder
Sometimes you could think that x1 Cavern Shinyfinder is enough as the deck has good card draw, requires some other cards and because a 3/1 body seem too weak, but in the gameplan of this deck, getting a buffed Kingsbane, while not the only winning factor, is going to be a very important one, so more chances of getting Kingsbane in the early game is going to be much better, and x2 Cavern Shinyfinder make that win condition much more consistent to get. Also, the turn 2 3/1 body is really fine, as it makes your opponent spend some early game resource or use Hero Power to deal with it unless they want to get punched/let you have a trade. So, Cavern Shinyfinder not only serves to bring Kingsbane but also to put some form of early board presence.
- Kingsbane kit not enough :
Apart from the Kingsbane kit there are the new spiders from Fal’dorei Strider and Edwin VanCleef along with the damage spells too for the control of the board and win the game. In terms of key minions, the main differences between previous to K&C Miracle Rogue decks and this one is that instead of Kingsbane and Fal’dorei Strider they contained Sherazin, Corpse Flower and Arcane Giant, and we trust, although their mechanics are very different, the new cards will do a great job to win.
Elven Minstrel is a very cool card that somewhat work as a tutor-effect because we play few creatures and keep your hand with resources while having an acceptable body, but at the moment we don't find space for him in this deck. It's a very good card but not as core-looking as the other cards chosen.
Both serve the same purpose but work quite differently and there is only one of them in the deck because in favor of balance having both cards could be overkill. To choose which one to carry is more a matter of preference or depending on how you want to approach the meta.
Arcane Giants have a big booty that can survive some AoE cards and that once you play one of it gives you a solid 8/8 being a total of 16/16 on the deck, but having the bad side of being only playable on turn 6 on the best scenarios, thus, being a dead card for too much time if drawn on early turns. On the other side, Fal’dorei Striders can be played at turn 4 as a 4/4 body, and make a total of 32/32 stats scattered in the deck, but relying on some drawing luck or being able to pull a nice Gadgetzan Auctioneer miracle play; their bodies are vulnerable to AoE spells but they are so many that if get killed, other spiders will come back later.
We chose Fal’dorei Strider to focus on fighting against tempo decks because of them being able to be played since turn 4 and also for the total 32/32 stats.
Drawing both on first hand may not be so good since you'd prefer to get Kingsbane and Deadly Poison, but you can still use Cavern Shinyfinder as a normal 2-drop for board presence; surely, it's a weak body, but it can help with a trade along with your weapon (which can be worth against pingless Hero Power classes like Hunters, Aggro Paladins and Zoo Warlocks).
Also, a good option if Kingsbane is enough for early board control would be to use it and keep your Cavern Shinyfinder in hand to bring Kingsbane back. Drawing Cavern Shinyfinder along with Kingsbane is a little like drawing Patches the Pirate, a risk that you take in favor of a big benefit, but in the first case it's less probably going to happen and not as hurtful as drawing the little pirate. Mainly depends on the deck you're facing, but if you have Kingsbane, Shinyfinder and a Deadly Poison, you usually can keep them freely.
- No Kingsbane means that weapon enchantments become dead cards :
Having 3 cards that specifically mean having Kingsbane in your hand it is not going to be hard to get it on the first half of the deck. You can survive the first turns trading with Hero Power, and cheap spells, and in some horrible situations, spending one Deadly Poison to survive, but it's more probable that you'll draw Kingsbane early.
- Deck’s survivability depends on Leeching Poison:
The deck works like many other Miracle Rogue decks, you can use spells, some few minions and trade with weapon to survive before reaching a favorable position, so Leeching Poison is not the core for survivability. It is the key for life healing and getting better trades in the late game, and once you survive the build-up, the advantage it gives you is really big, may it be for killing minions and mitigating the health loss, or keeping you safe from burst cards.
7 - Kingsbane Miracle representation
With the release of the expansion our deck has became the most representative of Kingsbane decks. Here, you can see how has been the performance of the deck with a lot of statistical data that will help us understand the deck better:
Also, for anyone wanting to see the deck on action before trying it, here is a showcase video made by Hearthstone youtuber kiwiinbacon. Hope you enjoy it!
And this other one by the new hearthstone youtuber KadakHS offering gameplay with very analytical commentary on how he plays the matches.
8 - Deck Updates
Whenever we make a change on the deck it 's going to be notified here.
08/dec/2017: -1 Mimic Pod, +1 Elven Minstrel; definitely drawing 2 minions, especially getting Auctioneer soon is more valuable than getting a random extra resource while also having another decent body on the board. Mimic Pod may have worked better in the past generating threats for a more reactive playstyle, but as our deck is more threatening, Elven Minstrel serves better for a proactive playstyle.
08/dec/2017: -1 Vilespine Slayer, +1 SI:7 Agent: right now Vilespine Slayer has very few good targets during an overall game because the proactive game right now is more designed around very small minions and face damage cards. For example, you can see that Bonemare, compared to previous metagame, is completely absent at the moment. SI:7 Agent helps eliminating those small minions while also giving a good body for its mana cost.
14/dec/2017: -2 Swashburglar, -1 Patches the Pirate, +1 SI:7 Agent, +1 Sap, + Cold Blood: too many control decks from rank 5 to 1, Taunt Warlocks and Highlander Priests mainly, and the pirate kit isn't doing much on those matches, so a Sap alongside Cold Blood make for good finishers or very impactful plays; aggro decks are still hard but pirate kit isn't doing enough of a difference while the second SI:7 Agent can keep control of the board and Sap and Cold Blood also make big plays on the mid-game that can often turn the game on our favour or even finish it.
30/jan/2018: -1 Vilespine Slayer, -2 SI:7 Agent, -1 Counterfeit Coin, -1 Gadgetzan Auctioneer, -1 Shiv, +2 Southsea Squidface, +1 Doomerang, +1 Blade Flurry, +1 Sprint, +1 Leeching Poison: after a lot of testing with several Kingsbane variants I've found Kingsbane working better on a more controlish style deck with which start pushing the game on mid-game, and the it is so consistent that playing some weapon-bases utility spells is very effective. Then, the deck now focus much more on getting the spiders and a buffed Kingsbane than trying hard to survive on the early game, although this means aggro will still be hard, but stronger against control decks; and also considering the incoming nerfs aggro will decrease a bit for sure, the deck is going to show a better performance. x2 Leeching Poison because this is a determinant for many games, or to get back after a hard early game vs aggro decks, so it's better to secure this buff; x2 Southsea Squidface because it brings much more power for Kingsbane and it's a decent 4-drop; x1 Doomerang and x1 Blade Flurry, both are great cards to control the board once you get a decent Kingsbane, Blade Flurry can sometimes get the game back entirely to you or secure if against decks that play many taunts when you are about to win the game, like Spreading Plague and Voidlord's deathraddle, and Doomerang works for many situations, giving you extra lifesteal in a key turn, more control for board and renew your weapon, and only costs 1-mana. x1 Sprint and x1 Gadgetzan Auctioneer, more like a style decision, both work perfectly, each one has a different draw mechanic that doesn't exclude the other in this deck, there are more than enough cheap spells for Gadgetzan Auctioneer and x2 Preparation for Sprint.
17/feb/2018: -1 Gadgetzan Auctioneer, -1 Counterfeit Coin, +1 Sprint, +1 Captain Greenskin: both Sprint and Gadgetzan Auctioneer are excelent draw tools, each one with its pros and cons that make neither of them better than the other but just good and interchangeable in this kind of deck which have many spells and some minions. However, Captain Greenskin is a highly valuable card for Kingsbane thanks to the point of durability it adds, so, in order to make him fit in the deck, we remove Counterfeit Coin and replace Gadgetzan Auctioneer with Sprint as there's a 0-mana spell less in the deck for him to work out well, while also, indirectly getting a bit more draw consistency with Elven Minstrel.
We thank you a lot for your attention, hope we have helped you to understand the deck and maybe some more things about Hearthstone in general, and are looking forward to discuss with you in the comments if you have a question/suggestion/remark, or some feed-backs after having played Kingsbane Miracle yourself !
Also, thanks alot for all those who upvoted the deck ! We're putting a lot of efforts in producing this in-depth guide and paying attention to it's informational and visual quality because of it, and we will continue as the page continues gaining in popularity and visibility !
Jumarti & Weedovore