Welcome to the fourth edition of the Data Reaper report!
The ladder was reset and the June season has begun. Over the past week we’ve recorded nearly 7,500 games.
These are the numbers for games played between June 1 and June 7.
Since it is the beginning of the season, and there haven’t been many games recorded at high ranks, we present the numbers separately for games played at rank 10 or under, where we’ve recorded over 2,500 games. As the month progresses, we will present the Metagame at ranks 5-1 as well as legend, like we did in past Data Reaper reports.
Ranks 10 and Below
Not much has changed from last week. The most significant trend is the decline of Miracle Rogue, causing Druid to leapfrog the class to become the 5th most represented. There has also been a slight overall decrease in the number of Warriors, but that can be chalked up to the ladder reset, and they still sit at the top of the Meta game.
We are looking forward to seeing how the European Spring championship and the innovations in it might impact the ladder Meta game over the weekend and later.
Control Warrior is king once again! Recently, we witnessed Shoop and Th3Rat absolutely dominate the most recent ONOG feature tournament. One of their main keys to success was using a strong Control Warrior build. This archetype wanes in and out of popularity but always stays prevalent in every Meta game Hearthstone has ever had. Here is the list Shoop and Th3Rat both used during their successful ONOG feature runs.
Dragon Warrior has remained a top contender for the best Warrior deck and is still present on the ladder. We believe the deck is currently underrated by the masses. The growth of the archetype seems to be plateauing this week but we have seen new innovations in the archetype with cards like N’Zoth’s First Mate appearing in more lists.
C’Thun Warrior has remained steady throughout the past few weeks. Every build is relatively similar and different players are continuing to find success with the deck each week.
Thrall is still doing Thrall things! This week we feature both familiar and unfamiliar faces that have successfully piloted the class in tournaments or on ladder.
Vicious Syndicate’s very own Shoop SMOrc’d his way to a victory at the ONOG Feature #3, earning a ticket to the Hearthstone tournament at Pax Prime. He utilized a fairly common Aggro Shaman list with very minor changes, sticking to the core of the deck.
Up next is Derpytroller , a rising underground player who is avid ladder grinder participating in many open tournaments as well. He works hard on making a name for himself in the scene. He has reached rank 1 legend on the first week of June using Xixo’s Hybrid Shaman list that was featured in last week’s Data Reaper report.
Zoo has continued to be a strong contender during the first week of June. Crazed Alchemist is still widely played. The versatility of the card promises a discovery of a new situation every week where this card is amazing. Example of the week: Swapping the stats of your Sea Giant after your Paladin opponent set its attack to 1.
There is an ongoing debate as to whether Leeroy or double Doomguard is better. Each variant has its strengths and weaknesses, but ultimately the correct answer can depend on the current Meta and on your own play style. Competitive tournaments this week have shown more players preferring Leeroy over Doomguards, while Chakki built a Zoo list that included neither Doomguards nor Leeroy, with a Warrior ban in mind.
Reno Warlock has an established presence in competitive tournaments. It was used in Shoop’s lineup to win the ONOG Feature #3 as well as SuperJJ’s lineup to win the FACEIT TV invitational. While not winning the tournament with the deck, Eloise brought a dragon variant of the archetype that had a decent performance as well.
There have been several interesting developments over the last week in the Hunter Class.
Justsaiyan popularized a list which helped a few players place top 10 legend at the end of the May season. Keep in mind that Tracking should not be used as a 1 drop on turn 1. It is a tool to find lethal in the end-game or to help smooth out your curve. The card can have its FeelsBadMan moments though, such as forcing you to choose between Savannah Highmane or two Call of the Wilds.
Firebat may have solved the puzzle on a successful Face Hunter build. He recently posted a list which helped him to win an online cup recently. After some internal testing of the deck, it is reasonable to say that Midrange Hunter has mostly better matchups across the board; however the surprise factor of the deck can provide an advantage against an opponent caught off guard, and it can complement certain tournament line ups well.
Druid has started seeing more play both on ladder and in tournaments. Its increased presence is partly due to SilentStorm’s C’Thun Druid list, which several players (SilentStorm, Neobility, and Bbgungun) navigated to high legend finishes in May.
C’Thun Druid was successfully utilized by Shoop in his victory at the ONOG Feature #3. Chakki and Amnesiac also brought C’Thun Druid to tournaments, but made different tech choices such as Bloodmage Thalnos and Mulch.
Another popular Druid archetype is Ramp Druid. In the FACEIT Invitational over the weekend both Eloise and Dog brought Ramp Druid, but each list was built very differently. Eloise’s list was created by Neobility and it has a very top heavy curve which features Deathwing as a late game comeback mechanic. Although Dog’s list didn’t perform particularly well in the tournament, it is interesting nonetheless. The deck features more spells which synergize with Violet Teachers in the mid-game, and complement Yogg-Saron as a late game comeback mechanic.
J4CKIECHAN’s recently posted a detailed guide of his Token Druid list which was featured last week. The deck is seeing a small but steady amount of play.
Overall, the Druid class appears to be getting more refined, and it remains to be seen what its full potential could be.
- SilentStorm’s C’Thun Druid
- Neobility’s Ramp Druid
- Dog’s Ramp Druid
- J4ckieChan’s Token Druid (Guide Link)
Over the past few weeks, Rogue has gone from an unstoppable powerhouse to nearly Priest status on ladder. The version of Miracle Rogue with which we have been having the most success internally is the N’Zoth Miracle Rogue deck. Much like standard Miracle Rogue, this deck utilizes Auctioneer to thin out its deck and get to its important cards; however it does not have the burst that standard Miracle Rogue does. It does have a lot more staying power against control decks and also offers minions in the early game to help combat the aggressive decks in the Meta.
We have also noticed an increase in many forms of non-Miracle Rogue archetypes such as N’Zoth, C’Thun and Reno Rogue. However none of them have really established a significant presence on ladder or made an impact in the tournament scene just yet.
Mage is in the same spot as last week; a pretty niche pick for tournaments and for ladder. Tempo Mage has seen a slight increase in tournament play but the vast majority of Mages are still of the Freeze archetype. Freeze Mage is an interesting deck to watch in tournaments because of the large number of lines you can take in a single game. The deck rewards matchup knowledge as it is very easy to throw games with it as soon as turn 2.
Sintolol won the French XTRA Cup with the no Pyroblast and 1 Mirror Image Freeze Mage list which seems to be the most consistent deck going into a field with many diverse matchups.
In the vast majority of streamed tournaments this week, Pyroblast was a dead card sitting in the hand. On the same note, drawing two Ice Barriers is almost game over. In the current Meta game, a 3 mana card that heals for 8 is too slow, because it is more beneficial for the Freeze Mage to actively deal with the board. That is even more so with the inclusion of two Forgotten Torches in current standard builds.
Mirror Image allows you to fill out your curve and effectively heal for roughly the same amount, or even more in certain scenarios. It also allows you to play around common cards in the Meta game such as Ragnaros the Firelord, Deadly Shot, Leeroy Jenkins, and Stampeding Kodo. The card has single handedly won games due to its utility.
Tempo Mage decks vary a bit more since there are many more flex card slots, and there are different approaches to builds.
With Hunter picking up popularity, Freeze Mage might get pushed a little bit out of the tournament scene. It will be interesting to see the European Spring Championships coming up this weekend. How will the participants choose to represent Mage, and if they do, how will it perform on this high level field?
The innovation of Priest has been a slow process. The lack of real interest in the class has really hurt its ability to produce any standout builds. JAB did have success qualifying for the Star-Ladder Finals in Shanghai with his N’Zoth Control list. The list featured no Northshire clerics and a copy of Embrace the Shadow for burst potential as well as removal flexibility. It also features two copies of Forbidden Shaping, a card that has received initial hype but was eventually cut from most decks.
The only other notable Priest deck you might consistently find on ladder is the Dragon variant. Most players follow the template similar to Snower’s N’Zoth Dragon list. It is safe to assume that most Priest lists you will run into on ladder will be utilizing N’Zoth.
While Priest’s only relevant Deathrattle class minion is Shifting Shade, the slow nature of the class benefits from a powerful fatigue synergistic win condition like N’Zoth. Shifting Shade has also turned out to be one of the better cards in the entire set of WoToG, so playing decks that can utilize it seems like a no-brainer.
There were two major tournaments this past weekend: the FACEIT Invitational and the ONOG Feature #3. No players brought Paladin to either event, while several players brought Priest!
N’Zoth paladin continues to perform poorly across the board, as its best matchups (face decks and less greedy control lists) are rare these days.
The class’ best hope at the moment may well be Jambre’s Secret Paladin list, which he piloted to top 10 Legend on EU at the end of the May season. It has a slow, mid-range style, utilizing Rallying Blade, Aldor Peacekeeper, and several 1-drops to maintain board control into its power turns on 4 and 6 mana. However, this deck is still unproven in tournaments, and much of its ladder success may be due to its surprise factor.
One of the more surprising phenomenon on ladder is what we believe to be the under representation of Dragon Warrior. It is a deck that, based on our internal statistics (and we are developing a way to present matchups in an accurate manner to the community in the near future), is very good against the current Metagame and a powerhouse according to many high level players.
Its ability to gain an early initiative on the board makes it a good choice to play against Shaman, Mid Range Hunter and Zoo, since it prevents them from dictating the pace of the game. It is also strong against the other tempo-based Warrior variants. It generally struggles against very slow and defensive control decks, but not nearly to the same degree as Patron Warrior, which we featured last week. Overall, we think it is a much underrated deck against the current Meta, which seems to have stabilized, and is just waiting to be broken.
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