Good evening, I am Matthew “LBYS” Teska and I currently play for Vicious Syndicate. My favorite deck has always been Freeze Mage. Freeze Mage’s playstyle is, simply put, to stall the game until you can finish the opponent with Alexstrasza and very efficient damage spells the Mage class has to its disposal. I have always liked messing around with various builds and tech for the deck. Most of the cards in Freeze Mage are pretty standard and irreplaceable such as Doomsayers, freeze spells, and the secret choices. Lets take a look at my deck that influenced Demigod at the ESL Legendary Series S2 LAN Finals.
I made a few changes going into the last call qualifier. I fell just short of qualifying myself for the tournament and helped Demigod choose the best Freeze Mage deck for the occasion. The most unique thing about this deck is the inclusion of two Cone of Colds. The casters continued to talk about how different and potentially poor this card choice might be for Demigod. It is a card that hasn’t been played in quite some time and even when it was played it was usually just one copy. Going into the tournament, I made the call that there would be tons of midrange and control decks brought and made a freeze mage list with this thought in mind. I was recently only running one Cone of Cold for ladder with the initial reasoning that 80% of people on ladder did not play around it by putting their strongest cards on the side and weaker ones in the middle. Through some play testing a month or so ago, I realized that many times I found myself facing down a board of 2-3 medium threat creatures. Cone of Cold is amazing in these type of situations. Sometimes you really need to get to your late game stall and have nothing to play turns 4-5. The card is also really good against control and has better synergy with Emperor Thaurissan and Archmage Antonidas. Archmage Antonidas and Cone of Cold is a really strong combination and saving a Frost Nova can be important going into the late game. I personally really like having a Frost Nova in my hand just in case Loatheb tries to ruin my plans. Cone of Cold generally does the same thing as Blizzard for less and is available two turns before Blizzard is. This stays true unless more aggressive decks or decks that flood the board beyond a few minions become popular.
There is also the decision of running Healbot over a second Ice Barrier. The argument for Ice Barrier is that it heals the same amount as Healbot, has Mad Scientist synergy, and costs less. The reason that Healbot is better is in the Freeze Mage mirror which helped much more in the Qualifier than it did in the actual Finals in California. It also does well against hunters because they can simply ignore an Ice Barrier and burn you out. Pyroblast will always be a super solid card because in some matchups, including Handlock and Hunter, all you need is a Fireball and a Pyroblast to finish the game. Pyroblast opens a win condition if Emperor Thaurissan or Archmage Antonidas wasn’t able to be used.
Otherwise, the rest of the cards in the deck are pretty standard and used in any current Freeze Mage build. Malygos was also considered as an extra win condition but in our preparation, Pyroblast was found to be better for the strategy. Freeze Mage is a very fun deck to play and has a high skill cap in my opinion. There are very complex situations and you need to play to your win conditions while playing around theirs. I often stream freeze mage on my twitch channel: //twitch.tv/lbys_hs and provide my commentary on the games. My current schedule that I am trying to stick to is every weekday in the afternoon CST time and you can follow my twitter: @vS_LBYS as well.
I hope you enjoyed this article and I will be working on more articles on Freeze Mage in the future.