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Medium featured0829 concede shaman deck guide

This guide first appeared here.

Proof of Legend

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Core Cards

  • Lightning Bolt
  • Ancestral Spirit
  • Lava Shock
  • Elemental Destruction
  • Healing Wave
  • Hex
  • Lightning Storm
  • Earth Elemental
  • Hallazeal the Ascended

Flex Cards in the Deck

  • Ancestral Knowledge
  • Maelstrom Portal
  • Far Sight
  • Charged Hammer
  • Elise Starseeker
  • Azure Drake
  • Yogg-Saron, Hope's End
  • Arcane Giant

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Flex Cards out the Deck

  • Earth Shock
  • Bloodmage Thalnos
  • Eternal Sentinel
  • Stormcrack
  • Mana Tide Totem
  • Flamewreathed Faceless
  • Cairne Bloodhoof
  • Emperor Thaurissan
  • Fire Elemental
  • Sylvanas Windrunner
  • Thing from Below
  • Baron Geddon
  • Bog Creeper
  • Chromaggus
  • Ragnaros the Firelord
  • Ysera
  • N'Zoth, the Corruptor

Previous Guide

Notable Omissions

  • Eternal Sentinel
  • Flamewreathed Faceless
  • Thing from Below
  • Chromaggus
  • Ragnaros the Firelord
  • Ysera

Last Month's Decklist

Strategy

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The core strategy of concede shaman has not changed; punish over-extenders by using powerful board clears and heals, and then slap down a fattie (or two) by using Ancestral Spirit. It’s in spirit a control deck that has been gifted with ironically some of the best healing and board clears in the game (for a class that classically only knows that FaceIsThePlace).

The major difference between this deck and my previous iteration is the early game strategy. Last month there was far more “totem passing”, and turn four often had a proactive Flamewreathed Faceless.

This month, Lightning Bolt and Maelstrom Portal allowed me to keep the early board more in check, and so I was less reliant on a hard mulligan for Elemental Destruction and a Lava Shock. I think this is what allowed me to cut eternal sentinel from the deck and still survive the early game. Also, using Arcane Giants allows for far more effective tempo plays after an elemental destruction, or when you happen to be overloaded.

Matchups

I really should start tracking my stats formally, anyone have any recommendations for a stat tracker for Mac? These matchups are based on general impressions, and also I’m thinking about what they were like once when I hit my stride with the above list (which took awhile). I wouldn’t consider any matchup an easy win, because aggro can still curb-stomp you if you don’t draw your early answers.

Slightly favored (60-70% estimated winrate)

  • Almost every aggro deck (Zoo, Dragon Warrior, Face Shaman, any Hunter, Aggro Pally, Tempo Mage, and the new Beast Druid)
  • N’Zoth/Murloc pally (contingent on getting good Hexes)
  • Freeze mage
  • Patron Warrior (probably easiest matchup)

Undetermined / 50-50

  • Token druid, due to nutz openings or a good Yogg-Saron, Hope's End

Unfavored (35-45% estimated win rate)

  • Any rogue that runs Sap
  • OTK Warrior
  • Renolock
  • Any midrange shaman that runs Hex and Thunder Bluff Valiant

Again these are estimated, I should probably start tracking formal stats.

Mulligan Guide

Here's a mulligan guide against each class:

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Always Keep

  • Lightning Bolt
  • Far Sight
  • Elemental Destruction OR Lightning Storm (usually not 2)
  • Lava Shock
  • Hex

Shaman and Druid

  • You can keep 2 board clears
  • Maelstrom Portal
  • Healing Wave in aggro meta

Hunter

  • Maelstrom Portal
  • Healing Wave

Rogue

  • Don’t keep Lightning Storm

Priest

  • Don’t keep Board Clears

Paladin

  • Maelstrom Portal
  • 2 board clears in aggro meta
  • Healing Wave in aggro meta

Warrior

  • Keep Healing Wave in aggro meta

Mage

  • No change

Card Discussion

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Charged Hammer/Elise Starseeker

I conceptualize these two almost as the same. They are decent turn four drops (which I would otherwise lack), that are primarily meant to allow me to win grinder matches. I found that the totem hero power was actually a liability against things like brawl. Also, because there is so much AoE, having the zap-zap hero power allows for very efficient removal. One thought I have on Elise is that she allows you to run an extensive amount of healing and AoE’s/removal, which really helps you have consistent answers to aggro.

Against control decks, you just save those cards and make them legendaries. TH and ES synergize in a way, in that the zapzap allows you to conserve as much removal as possible.

Arcane Giant

I was skeptical about this addition at first, but the frequent overloading and spending the first 1-5 turns trying to efficiently remove things makes these guys incredibly powerful. They can also be easy value from Ancestral spirit, provided you are sure that they do not have a Sylvanas Windrunner, Hex, or Polymorph.

Maelstrom Portal

The pros (and my) initial opinion on this card was very underwhelming. What I’m finding is that having a board clear that doesn’t overload, and also having a tool to use whenever you roll spell damage totem has been invaluable. The 1 cost minion can actually be significant, and I can’t tell you how many forbidden rituals this card has allowed me to defecate on.

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Card Draws (Ancestral Knowledge, Far Sight, Azure Drake)

I conceptualize these cards very similarly; in order to have sufficient consistency and to not run out steam, this deck needs sufficient card draw. The spell damage on Azure Drake is an excellent bonus (see above), and I use them above bloodmage thalnos purely because they win jousts for healing wave. I’ve tried running less card draw than this, and I just really felt my consistency and sustain was lacking.

Lightning Bolt

This is the only “core” card I’ll comment on, because I think at least 2 copies of an early game removal are needed. I prefer this over stormcrack because I really don’t feel you can use stormcrack in the early game as well. You can totem-pass turn 2 and the totem lightning bolt turn 3, and this maneuver was a very common way of stalling out the first few turns.

Stormcrack absolutely has several important targets in this meta, but I just found the extra mana to be too prohibiting and harmful to tempo when trying to do damage control the first few turns. It was also key to be able to lightning bolt on turn six when I was forced to elemental destruction on turn 5 (without a lava shock).

Bloodhmage Thalnos and Eternal Sentinel

Both cards are useful, but I’d just like to note quickly that they don’t win healing waves, which is key.

Yogg-Saron, Hope's End

I mostly see this as a card draw and a board clear. What was difficult is that you can’t overload at all the turn before yogging, and of course the inconsistency. Still, this fella won me plenty of games. I think conceptually this card highlights the fact that in this version of the deck, you sacrifice threat density (especially when compared to last month) for ridiculous amounts of removal. In this way, you have sufficiently consistent answers to aggro, which I think is truly what allowed this deck to reach legend. Yogg, Elise, and arcane giants are the cards that capitalize on the excessive inclusion of removal in this deck.

Conclusion

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I really love this deck. Psychologically, it is very satisfying to see an aggro heavy meta get rekt, and to have the tools to punish people for over-extending. One of the most frustrating things playing ladder is the abundance of all in/on curve type decks, and most decks not really having the tools to effectively punish these approaches.

Also of note, the approach to this deck is going to change dramatically (IMO) when Spirit Claws come out. I’m so glad they printed this card, it gives early game tools for control approaches, and also gives the deck some form of reach (going face for 9 later in the game is nothing to sneeze at).

I really appreciate comments and feedback, and thanks for reading!

Comments (2)

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Gnarkill

I am really having a hard time with this deck. I have made it my exclusive deck for about a week now. I am having big problems with consistency. I keep hanging out around 12-14 Standard.

With my other two decks, Dragon Warrior and Aggro Shammy, I have seen Standard 3.

I am making the grind, and trying to see how I can improve. But this has not been easy. I have read the guide, and I do STOMP any aggro/zoo. But I lose it vs a late game deck almost every time.

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morocotopo

For MAC trackers, you have:
https://github.com/Jeswang/Hearthstone-Deck-Tracker-Mac
https://github.com/HearthSim/HSTracker

Also, you can update the list (btw, is awesome) since all karazhan was released.