A Month in The Wild - Week Three: Dragon Priest
Dragon Priest, coming through! This week we're leaving the recruits behind and unleashing the raw power of Dragons.
Wrapping up Paladin
Last week, I started off playing N’Zoth/Reno Shaman with some success in the lower ranks, before struggling as we started to meet better opponents. That was a deck of my own concoction, but this week, with a relatively standard Token Paladin deck, I kept a 63% win rate over a larger sample size. I think this deck might be pretty good. Hell, I even managed to win a game against Pirate Warrior and, more importantly, perhaps, this deck was a blast to play
If you enjoy grinding out wins by maintaining board presence, this is the deck for you. You aren’t going to combo kill anybody from 30 and you aren’t going to kill anybody on turn four, but you will fight tooth and nail for the board, and you will usually win against other attrition decks. You have so many great tools for staying on-board that other fair decks will feel like they are bashing their heads against a wall. I found that I mostly lost to hyper aggressive decks and decks that good generate even more value. Dragon Priest, in particular, was a nightmare and the greedier Reno lists can outlast you.
I almost didn’t want to swap decks for week three, but you can vote below as usual. Oddly enough, the vote from last week ended up being between my two worst match-ups: Pirate Warrior and Dragon Priest. Pirate Warrior is a real problem in Wild, and is especially problematic for the decks I have played so far. Dragon Priest is just better at grinding out value than Token Paladin. I feel like if you roll high on your Stegodons you have a chance, but my record was 0/2 in the match-up so it’s tough to say.
Week 3 - Coming Through!
So, I mentioned above that I kinda didn’t want to swap decks for week three. Well, with this article being written a day earlier than normal and the fact I was having so much fun with Paladin, my Priest sample size is not huge so far. I did manage to squeeze in 10 games but I will definitely have more to say about the deck next week.
So far, I’m not convinced by Dragon Priest. I went 6/4 in my games today and the deck felt pretty inconsistent. The two matches I played against Pirate Warrior perfectly exemplified this: In one game I drew all my early game cards and won easily but in the other I died on turn six, having done very little. I lost to a couple of what seemed like some very sub-optimal decks, but won against staples of the format, such as Midrange Paladin.
Individually, Drakonid Operative is still bonkers. The fact that he grabbed me a Spikeridged Steed against Paladin pretty much won me a game I was expecting to lose. Getting relevant cards for Operative can change the course of a game, obviously, but the same is true of Netherspite Historian. I think these two cards are a big part of why the deck feels so swingy. They’re fun to play with when they work out, but they can have a huge say in whether you win or lose and I found that reliance on RNG a little frustrating.
I definitely made some mistakes with this deck, including the classic “oops I didn’t have a dragon in hand” we all remember from six months ago. Indeed, despite the prevalence of RNG in the deck, there are definitely some decisions to be made with this deck. It’s no Patron Warrior, and you can have hands where you just play on curve and win, but it usually plays out somewhere between those two scenarios. Choosing whether it’s best to take a potentially game-winning bomb off Technician or to fill out your curve with a less powerful card is just one position that can trip you up. A lot of these decisions are board and match-up dependent, too, though picking another Operative if you have that option is rarely incorrect.
It’s still early days for my relationship with this deck. I’m not in love with it but I don’t hate it either, and there are definitely enough interesting lines of play to keep me interested. Whether the interest grows into an infatuation like the one I had with Token Paladin remains to be seen, but I’m certainly looking forward to finding out. I think some more AoE might be required for the aggressive match-ups but there is plenty of time to experiment.
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What should I play next week?
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