Mech Mage has always been a Hearthstone enigma, with it constantly fluctuating in and out of the meta-game. It established itself in GvG, making it look like it was going to last for the long haul, but instead, it eventually got exposed for its lack of strength without a perfect curve and its inconsistent draw mechanics. Overall though, it was a successful deck; helping hundreds of pros and average Joes climb to legend and in this article, I highlight some of the possibilities of this archetype moving forward.
How to Play:
The Avant-Garde Mech Mage plays very similarly to that of its GvG predecessor. Controlling the board early is crucial to set up the mid-late game plays. Mechwarper is still the crème de la crème of this deck, allowing you to drop better or more minions than the opponent. Unlike previous iterations, this deck scales bigger and stronger, allowing you to have more win conditions while also supplying plenty of early-midgame minions. Cards like Rhonin and Effigy infuse the Mage class with a new flavor that is both fun and proficient to play with.
Against Aggro (and most Midrange): Flooding the board and overwhelming the opponent is the key to success. The coalition of the Mage hero power and high valued mech minions allows you to control the board while also keeping minions alive. Mid-tier minions like the Piloted Shredder and Goblin Blastmageare good tempo cards, especially when backed up with an Effigy.
Against Control: Depending on the class, a steady unremitting stream of minions is usually the most tactful way to defeat the opponent. Try not to waste Effigy on a low costed minion, getting it off on a 4+ costed minion can swing tempo in your favor. Play around AoE, try to draw out Lightning Storm,Flamestrike, and the Auchenai Soulpriest/Circle of Healing combo. Hold onto all your low costed spells as Archmage Antonidas will be one of your main win conditions. If that doesn’t work; Fireball, Piloted Sky Golem, Dr. Boom and Rhonin are great alternatives to apply pressure, and finish the opponent off.
The mulligan phase is pretty simple for this deck; look for one 1-drops and the Mechwarper. The coin can sometimes be tricky and it’s often a better play to wait until turn-2 to coin-out an Annoy-o-Tron with a Mechwarper, instead of coining out the Mechwarper on turn-1. Unless you have to immediately remove a minion with Frostbolt , hold onto the coin until at least turn2-3, as it synergizes more efficiently with 3-4-drop cards.
Effigy: I’m really enjoying this card, the Recombobulator effect is definitely a blast. The reason I didn’t add a Mad Scientist to this deck is because controlling the Effigy’s effect is very important. Getting this to go off on a minion below 4-mana actually nullifies the usefulness of this card. Using it to set up a turn-4 play is sometimes your best option, using it on a card like the Piloted Shredder provides immense value, essentially giving you 3-minions worth of value!
Clockwork Knight: Overall, this is a pretty solid card, especially if you can activate it on turn-4. I don’t know if this card will last, but right now, it adds an additional beefy minion to help transition to the late game, a missing feature of most mech archetypes.
Rhonin: How can you say anything bad about this card? Its deathrattle provides insane value coalesced with a beefy minion. Yes it can get BGH’d, but that’s only supplying you with an Avenging Wrath that does one more damage and cost three less!
In summary, I think Mech Mage is a decent choice to climb the ladder with right now. It’s a consist deck that can defeat a lot of differentiating archetypes; a crucial factor for those trying make that “end of the season push.” As always, if you have any questions, comments, or suggestions, make sure to leave them below!