Hey, guys! I’m Chriseroi, a “pretty okay” hearthstone player who started in June of 2015 and has been playing and enjoying it ever since! While I love reading a lot of these guides on hearthstone Players from various parts of the community, I noticed that a lot of people seemed to be writing off Tempo Mage as a meh deck recently, which I absolutely reject because it’s actually amazing for lots of reasons (Tempo Mage being my most favorite deck to play not having anything to do with it at all). I made this deck a couple weeks ago around the beginning of the Wrath of the Old Gods meta in the middle of May, but it’s still doing me justice now and it can deal with any class in the meta, given you’ve got the skill. And if you don’t, well, a handy guide can be found on the article you’re about to read right now! Lucky you!
Now, I’m not going to explain every card in the deck – not only would that drag on, but it’d basically be reciting information that’s been around in the hearthstone meta for a long time, and most are self-explanatory.
But, there are a couple of really important cards, both new and old, that are essential to making this deck work, especially in today’s meta, so let me point them out here so you guys know how they work and why they work.
Servant of Yogg-Saron
- Except for Frostboltin certain situations, you should always be throwing away your spells and high-cost minions in search of your early game minions: Mana Wyrm, Cult Sorcerer, Sorcerer's Apprentice, and Flamewaker.
- This is important: even if you think you have a good hand of spells, you’ll always rather play low-cost minions in the early game and save spells to activate Flamewaker.
- If you don’t have board presence, play a minion over a spell. The goal of Tempo Mage is to put pressure on your opponent while pushing the game in your favor, and a lack of board presence will not help do that.
- Try to hold your cards to maximize their synergetic value (i.e. cards like Sorcerer's Apprentice, Flamewaker, Archmage Antonidas) but if you’re behind on the board and you don’t have any other choices, feel free to play the card to get ahead, because you can’t play a good combo if you’re not alive to play it.
- I’d play Ethereal Conjurerover Azure Drakeif I know that whatever is left in my deck will not be as helpful as a spell that I could get from Ethereal Conjurer.
- Remember to always have board control, but make sure to not play right into an area-of-effect (AOE) spell by the opponent. Generally, the rule is three minions at a time, and even when you think you’re about to win the game, don’t overextend – you’ll never know when the opponent can make a comeback.
- Play your cards in the right order! Play Sorcerer's Apprenticebefore you play any spells so that they’re all discounted, take down Huge Toadbefore you play Loot Hoarderon the board – these are all simple moves that could cost you the game if played incorrectly.
- There’s a crazy amount of Warrior archetypes in the meta right now, but generally, definitely follow the standard Tempo Mage mulligan I listed earlier as it’s generally effective against all Warrior decks.
- Don’t use Arcane Missilesagainst Control Warrior, because cards like Armorsmithand Acolyte of Painlove getting pinged multiple times.
- Again, don’t overextend your board, because Brawlreally destroys the board and could swing it in the opponent’s favor if you weren’t careful.
- Before you’re thinking of dropping high-value targets like Archmage Antonidas, bait out their removal like Executeand Shield Slam, but most of the time you’d only play Archmage Antonidasif you can make use of his ability on the same turn.
- If it’s Patron Warrior, definitely try to save Flamestriketo leave a huge dent in their board of Grim Patronand Frothing Berserker.
- I haven’t seen too much Pirate Warrior recently, but they traditionally tend to be aggro-centric, so try to tempo out with Flamewakerand clear their board, since their burst potential is ridiculous. Mirror Imageis a great card against this deck and aggro decks in general in order to protect your early game minions.
- Most Shaman decks use the same core cards, so stick to the default mulligan and try to control the board. Curving out with Flamewakerand spells is the most ideal play here.
- If it’s a , definitely consider using Polymorphon a Thing From Belowor a Flamewreathed Facelessto control the board and pressure the opponent.
- Always save Flamestrikefor when you absolutely need it, because Shaman boards can get ridiculous very fast due to overload.
- If it’s an Aggro Shaman, keep their board clear using your spells and drop as many minions as you can, but most Aggro Shaman players ignore your minions anyway, so don’t focus too much on creating a strong board if you need to protect yourself first.
- Focus on clearing their board using Flamewakerand spell synergies, using Polymorphon insanely buffed minions such asor double Cold Blood, and save Flamestrikefor a board full of stealthed minions.
- As always, make sure to control the board and remove their minions through efficient trades and spells as soon as possible.
- I’ve mostly seen a lot of Divine Aggro Paladin and some Control Paladin on the ladder, but go about it the same way you’d go about Aggro Shaman and Control Warrior and stick with the default mulligan.
- Keep a small and strong board to avoid Equalityboard clears.
- Consider using Polymorphfor Tirion Fordringor Sylvanas Windrunner, or even C'Thun.
- Face Hunter isn’t really a thing, but I have seen a lot of Midrange Hunter lately, but the strategy for that matchup is pretty similar to Shaman and Warrior. Keep the board clear and ruin their day by taking away their beast synergies, watching out for that turn eight Call of the Wild.
- Consider using Polymorphon one of their Savannah Highmane, making sure to develop a strong enough board to take care of the second one. These tend to generally be the biggest threats.
- The only troublesome archetype that Druid has against Tempo Mage is Ramp Druid, courtesy of their ability to drop huge threats before you can efficiently deal with them.
- Their primary weakness is that Swipeis their only effective board clear, so if you can maintain an okay board before they drop too many threats down, you should be able to eventually out-tempo them with the standard Tempo Mage combos and synergies.
- In recent memory, I’ve seen more Zoolocks than Renolocks in the ladder, so I’d stick with the default mulligan as outlined earlier.
- If you can come up with a solid early game, you’ll most likely be able to curve out long enough to drop out the big guys; just make sure to use your Flamewakercombos and synergies to tempo out the opponent and control the board, because once you do that, you basically won the game.
- If all else fails, a Flamestrikeshould clear most of their board, if not all of it.
- A Renolock deck is a decidedly different battle, as you’ll have to wear out the opponent as he burns through his deck and eventually drops Reno Jackson. If you can’t kill your opponent within a single turn, don’t waste your burn spells and minions because you do not want to give them the opportunity to heal back to full health with Reno Jackson.
- There’s a lot of Control Priest and C'ThunPriest on the ladder as of late, so stick with your default mulligan and a Frostboltto take out the traditional turn one Northshire Cleric.
- Cards that you should definitely bait out before playing a Water Elementalor Archmage Antonidas: Shadow Word: Pain, Entomb, and Shadow Word: Death. However, if you can kill your opponent on the next turn, drop these guys on purpose so they’ll be forced to waste mana on removal and neglect to heal themselves.
- Tempo Mage against Priest without Lightbombis much more tolerable, so create a strong board and your opponent will eventually focus on removing your minions and allow you to push through and finish the game.
Thanks for reading! I hope you find this guide useful, and like you all probably know already, always think about the worst outcome that could happen every single turn and plan ahead! Let me know if you’ve enjoyed what I’ve written here, and feel free to criticize anything I said if you disagree. I’ll see you guys in Hearthstone!